any soundchip recommendations please?

I'm researching the beginnings of a new Arduino project.

I am expecting it to turn out a lot more complicated that I envision it so far, but basically this is what I want to do:

1. Have an Arduino play back a Midi file when it is switched on. 2. Have that midi data sent to a sound chip, such as a Yamaha YMZ294 to generate the music. 3. Have that chip rigged up to an audio out.

Basically a self contained music player, based around two chips.

There's a great example here, actually: http://kalshagar.wikispaces.com/Arduino+and+a+YMZ294

Anyway. My initial problem is that these Yamaha YMZ294 chips seem to be unavailable or prohibitively expensive. I guess because they are quite sought after for making 'chip music'.

If anybody has any suggestions, it'd be much appreciated. Likewise, I will post on this thread in the future should I find anything useful, for anyone's future reference.

For the record, these are some of the problems I predict:

- The arduino won't be able to hold enough midi, meaning I'll have to delve into a whole other world (I think it's 'eprom?') which I don't understand. - That midi won't necessarily be the language used by the sound chips, and translating the songs I have in midi to whatever language they use will be incredibly hard to do.

So likewise, anyone with any helpful suggestions to put me right if they can already see I'm about to go wrong - lemme know!

Cheers.

If it’s that expensive you could use a waveshield and play midi, as well as actual songs, it’s $22.
http://www.ladyada.net/make/waveshield/

Look at the VS1103b chip, there are some arduino sellers that produce break out boards for this.

you could use a waveshield and play midi

How can you play MID on a wave shield? It is for uncompressed samples only.