Sorry if I'm getting too much off topic, let me know if that's the case, I simply don't know with who else to discuss these things.
I have read a bit and I am still a little confused:
If I get it right, Paula was a totally advanced piece of hardware for its time for its capability of playback of digital audio, while SID was only a real-time partly analog partly digital synth with one DAC converter and PC sound cards having only the OPL2 frequency modulation synthesis used for MIDI playback, right?
I assume that first PC sound card that was capable of something else than simple FM synthesis (AdLib) or multiple PC-speaker-like playback (GameBlaster) was the Roland LAPC-1 featuring the MT-32 synth, which was in fact even more than simple wavetable synthesizer. Is this right?
And then, the first PC sound card capable of playing digital samples was the 1989-90 SoundBlaster. So it took PCs practically 5 years to catch on what was implemented (!) in Amiga back then.
So the "big jump" was actually the digital sample playability (before which we had only FM and wavetable synthesis)? (Which is in fact playing a digital recording which was recorded using pulse-code modulation making use of a DAC?)
And could you please explain the wavetable synthesis to me? I still don't get it. Is it a library of pre-recorded samples that are just combined and played on different volume/pitch to produce sound? Or are they synthesized real-time? And how do the "patches" function? (I am referring particulary to the LAPC-1, that is the most confusing part for me)