Testing out loud (speakers)
Hello Folks!

Last week i had a little bit of time to made some testing with speakers.
And a word before, here i can only describe my own (and subjective) impressions of sound.

The candidates.
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Right side from above:
- conventional 28mm speaker with PP-membrane in Soundtraxx baffle kit
- 28 x 28mm High Bass 2W speaker with metal membrane
- 30 x 40mm speaker witn conventional membrane
All have an impedance of 8 Ohm

In the middle one of those astoning tiny sugar cubes Reinhard told me of.

Left side from above; alle were sugar cubes of the Knowles Dumbo 1W; 8 Ohm type, but in different enclosures from Zimo:
- 13 x 18 x 13mm
- 40 x 20 x 9mm
- 40 x 22 x 9mm; two Dumbos wired in serial; 16 Ohm
- 50 x 15 x 14mm; in effect intended for G-Scale; 16 Ohm

Alle speakers were equipped with wires and plugs, so that a quick change of the speakers is possible. The speakers without baffles or boxes got a special "hand" created baffle.

The stage.
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Decoder tester from Zimo, here for all tests a Soundtraxx Econami ECO-100 Steam sound decoder was plugged to get equal preconditions. The sound volume was turned down to low volume and the adjustments were for all tests the same.
It is not my intention to make loud noise or simply a certain level of noise, but to get a certain quality of sound without a tympanum (eardrum) perforation. :hey:
The stage is set, the candidates are prepared and in near future i will narrate my impressions.

Cheers Lutz
Cheers Lutz
First one was this tiny sugar cube:

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The sound is here crisp and clear. And according to the relative small size not very loud. And as Reinhard wrote it has to be mounted into a suitable resonator.

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Next one was this Knowles sugar cube "Dumbo" mounted in an Zimo 18 x 13 x 13 (mm) resonator body. The body is a 3-dimensional printing.
The sound seemed to me like the upper frequencies were cut off. Thus setting the accents more to the middle frequencies.

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And an surprising effect; this improves the sound quality significant. A still more presence and resonance of lower frequencies is the result.
Don't ask me why, but it will do so. :|

Cheers Lutz
Cheers Lutz
Lutz, give it a test and reduce the baffle of the 18 x 13 to the half depth. That is a speaker that fits in surprisingly many places and the quality reduction is marginal. I became a fan of 18 x 13 x 5....10. Extreme flexible.
The effect with the gripper is surprising. May be it is because the baffle and the speaker got a better contact. Zimo mounts the baffle somewhat flaky with the flexible glue to the speaker.

Thanks for testing and letting us know about the results.
The GP38 from yesterday got four LS8x12 sugar cubes built as a pack. The Tsunami total sound CV 128 was set to 200.
I replaced them with one LS13x18 sugar cube and could reduce the total volume down to 15 and the sound is better.
At the same time did I experience that cutting the baffle in half has only minor impact on volume and quality of sound.

My conclusions for sugar cube speakers:
1. One large speaker is better than a pack of small ones
2. One large one with a cut down baffle is preferred over a pack of small ones.
I used the Zimo 13x18x13 sugar cube speaker on my last sound installation.The decoder is a Loksound select.

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I have had very satisfactory results with iphone 4 speakers. They sound much better than the 14x36's that i had been using. I am using them with RailPro modules.

Having more fun with RailPro
Next in testing is the big one. A friend of mine has given his Fujiyama brass SP GS4 to me for reworking and digitalizing it. A good opportunity to test the speaker in an encasement.

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Into the bottom, here a solid brass sheet of app. 1.2mm thickness, several holes of 3mm were drilled in the area where the speaker will be mounted.
The 40 x 28.5mm oval Soundtraxx speaker was simply mounted on the bottom with the also available gasket. These gaskets are self adhesive and made a hassle free installation.
The tender shell is of the type of multi-layer brass sheet, so that a overall thickness of app. 1mm is given. This has the effect of a very solid casing. This loco model is still a piece out of those good old days when rock solid Japanese craftmanship was available.

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The shell was mounted an the spaker cables were leaded outside. As for all tests a Econami Steam decoder an d the Zimo MXTAP test rack was used.
O.K. power on and WOW!!! :hey:

Next deed: reduce general sound level to 10% !
The sound is very bassy, it did not have to be loud, but is still far reaching. Easily reaching from one end of the convention hall, where the Fremo meeting took place, to the other (far) end. Also be very careful with the sound levels. Especially with those fizzling and hissing sounds like those of safety valves or steam blow. They can get to an painful level. At least it will be the best to reduce the sound level of them separately to a not-going-deaf level.

For home use, so my expierience und recommendation, the general sound level should be reduced to 3 - 5%. And when ever you have the space and room take that speaker, it sounds really great.

And at least, Soundtraxx has yet two sugar cubes in it's offerings; of 13 x 9 x 8,85mm and 16 x 12 x 11.25mm seizes.

Cheers Lutz
Cheers Lutz
Lutz that is a speaker housing indeed! A housing/tender of that size might be filled with mineral wool too like professional speaker systems.
My next testing in my "test bed loco":

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Already before i have had installed one of this big speakers into a medium sized USRA tender a year ago.

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But the game changed when i replaced the TSU1000 fitted before, with an new Econami100.
Before with the TSU1000 the sound was average, even when the equalizer was tuned and all soundfiles were carefully adjusted.
The new Econami outperforms it all. The speaker was just the same as before, but the sound changed dramatically. This is much better and the dynamic sequences are much better. Here progress is clearly hearable, so my opinion. Although the tender is not as big as the one of the GS2 (i have to correct it, it is really a GS2 and not a GS4), the sound is awesome.

Cheers Lutz
Cheers Lutz
Comparison of a traditional and a iPhone speaker

My first Intermountain GP10 arrived two weeks ago. It was equipped with a Loksound decoder and a 16 x 35 mm traditional speaker.
The second GP10 arrived today. It was the bare DC version. I installed two Tsunami 2 21pin sound decoder in both (replacing the Loksound in the first one) and a 13 x 18 mm iPhone speaker with an enclosure cut down by 50% in the second arrived engine. The CV setting are cloned (except CV1 for the address).
I got two identical engines with two different speakers.

The much smaller iPhone speaker is a bit louder and very remarkable has noticeable more low frequency power.
This is that what I received with TCS WOW-sound decoder where I installed a modified 18mm speaker into the smoke box.
This is the position where a speaker ought to be installed - my opinion.
See and listen this Youtube video - klick on picture, please.

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The used speaker is that like to see with the big sound box in center which is reduced to a minimal size and a smaller sound box on right.

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I'm very satisfied with the sound!
Cheers, Bernd

Please visit also my website http://www.us-modelsof1900.de.
You can read some more about my model projects and interests in my chronicle of facebook.
The next stage on the play:

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This are 2 of these Knowlws Dumbo Speakers in an shared enclosure. Initially designed for use with G-Scale they are connected in serial and together they have an impendance of 16 Ohms.
No problem for the Tsunami Econami 200 with an audio output designed for 8 Ohms. It may be not possible deafening your eardrums irrevocable by LOUD, but the bass presence is remarkable, even with moderate sound volumes adjusted.
For steam application bass volume is essential and i made the same expierence as Reinhard. The sugar cubes have more presence of lower frequencies, but also fewer presence with high frequencies. Here it causes really CHUFF - CHUFF instead of chiff - chiff. In dog terms boarhound vs chinchilla.

The same speaker squeezed under the shell of an Atlas GP40-2CW:
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Because i did'nt want any hassle with ESU Loksound4, the loco was ordered DC. Here a Tsunami Econami 21Pin was plugged in. The speaker, made by Zimo, fitted after i removed some materail of the weight at the rear end by filing down.
Here the sound file of the EMD 645Turbo was choosen. A engine known for a really screaming sound. And here too the characteristics of these speakers to prefer lower frequencies and supress higher ones are a benefit. The sound is not so sharp shrilling as with conventional speakers. By adjusting the equalizer you can make further tuning in direction of more bass rumbling of the engine sound.
This was increased when i chose just for fun the sound file GE 16FDL. Really PHLAP - PHLAP of the big bore engine was heard. Since i was in Canada last year i know what the big GE's used to tonal. And this combination of Tsunami Decoders and Zimo/Knowles speakers comes very very near to it.

Cheers Lutz
Cheers Lutz
I'm waiting to HEAR some of your experiences with these small speakers. Writing about a sound is that one, to hear the other and more importantly, I think!
Make short sound videos, please!
Cheers, Bernd

Please visit also my website http://www.us-modelsof1900.de.
You can read some more about my model projects and interests in my chronicle of facebook.
modelsof1900 Wrote:Lutz,
I'm waiting to HEAR some of your experiences with these small speakers. Writing about a sound is that one, to hear the other and more importantly, I think!
Make short sound videos, please!
=> Unna!

Explaination for the users: <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="https://www.fremo-net.eu/modulsysteme/baugroesse-h0/h0-usa/unna-divison/">https://www.fremo-net.eu/modulsysteme/b ... a-divison/</a><!-- m -->
Every year there is a annual module meeting, so in 2017 too.

My equipment for filming is suboptimal. I have tried several times, but the film is bucking and the audio has only a flat response. You did not hear what you hear in reality.
O.K. have a try, my fist video, everthing else than perfect:
<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g9S-mAwaOnQ&feature=youtu.be">https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g9S-mAw ... e=youtu.be</a><!-- m -->
The ALCOs are described here: <!-- l --><a class="postlink-local" href="http://bigbluetrains.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=9185">viewtopic.php?f=17&t=9185</a><!-- l -->
Both are equipped with Tsunami Econamis and Zimo sugar cubes as described. The black one with zebra stripes a Econami with 21-pin TMC and a relative small sugar cube 10 x 15 x 11mm under the short bonnet
The blue/yellow one has a Econami 100 an a Dumbo in an 26 x 20 x 08mm enclosure.

The steamer has an Econami 100 and a Zimo 50 x 15 x 14mm with double speakers in the tender. Mikado with 63' drivers and adjusted chuff rate.

Cheers Lutz
Cheers Lutz
a complement, here EMD 645 Turbo in GP40-2 CW:
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Cheers Lutz

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