ONLINE
STORE
"ASK THE BACH MAN"
FORUM
PARTS, SERVICE,
& INFORMATION
CATALOGS AND
BROCHURES

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?
November 19, 2017, 08:16:13 PM
Home Help Search Login Register
News: Check out the photo gallery link above or >click here< to see photos of recently announced products!
+  Bachmann Message Board
|-+  Discussion Boards
| |-+  Large
| | |-+  Simple Sound Enhancement for the 3-Truck Tsunami-equipped Shay
« previous next »
Pages: [1] 2 Print
Author Topic: Simple Sound Enhancement for the 3-Truck Tsunami-equipped Shay  (Read 6358 times)
Tom Lapointe


View Profile
« on: February 04, 2007, 09:40:34 PM »

Here's a VERY EASY way to get a bit more sound out of the new Bachmann DCC-&-Sound-On-Board 3-Truck Shay!

First, remove the tender tank from the 3rd-truck tender frame; remove the 2 small Phillips screws underneath the bottom rear of the tank, & slide the tank slightly forward on the frame to release the two latches at the front of the tank; CAREFULLY lift the tank off the frame, being careful not to over-stress & break the wires going to the back-up light.

All that's inside the tank are the speaker for the Tsunami system, a pair of weights, & the PC board that the "female" header wiring harness connector mounts to.  Find a suitable plastic cup to fit over the speaker (& still clear the top of the tender tank when it's re-installed! Wink); hot-glue the cup OVER & FULLY AROUND the speaker!  (You might also want to put a bit of hot glue over the "header" wires as well as "stress relief", along the lines of TOC's suggestion for the "Procedure").










Re-assemble the tender tank to the frame; while it still doesn't bring the Tsunami sound output level up to that of a Phoenix 2K2 board, I'd say it made something like a 3 db. improvement in the volume level! Smiley

"Cost" was raiding the girlfriend's accumulation of assorted plastic cups! Cheesy Wink  (I think it may at one time have held tartar source from a "fish-&-chips" dinner! Wink).                 Tom
Logged
Colorado

View Profile
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2007, 03:10:40 PM »

Nice.

How is the sound compared to a Phoenix?
Logged
Tom Lapointe


View Profile
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2007, 08:40:09 PM »

I haven't acquired any of the new Phoenix P5 boards yet (which are supposed to be 6-watt audio output Shocked), but it it NOT as loud as the Phoenix 2K2 (2-watt board, which I have 3 of).  The Tsunami board in the 3-Truck Shay is rated 1 watt output; the speaker in the tender tank (which DOES have a good sized magnet  Smiley on it!) is also marked with a 1-watt rating.  In terms of sound QUALITY, though, I would rate it EQUAL  Grin to the Phoenix boards; it IS 16-bit sound, but does not have the programmability of the Phoenix's, where you can download a sound file into it.  (One of my 3 Phoenix 2K2 boards was acquired in used, "like-new" condition via eBay, & came pre-programmed with the sound file for an Alco PA diesel; since I had the Phoenix computer interface & software, (& was installing it in a Bachmann Climax), I loaded the "Climax" sound file into it, & it now makes appropriate Climax noises! Cheesy).

Some of the things I like best about the Tsunami installed in the 3-Truck Shay are it's "playable" whistle, nice-sounding bell, & deep, bassy exhaust chuff.  The chuff rate (as the loco comes from Bachmann), however, is WAY too slow for a Shay Embarrassed; but if you're running on DCC, set CV116 (auto-chuff rate), to it's maximum value of 255, this will give a very beleivable fast Shay chuff rate! Smiley  Although not as loud as the Phoenix boards, I find the max. volume level ACCEPTABLE; living in a densely-populated neighborhood, I RARELY run my 2K2 boards anywhere NEAR their maximum volume!  I also have a "YouTube" clip of it in operation, I'll try to provide the link later tonight. Wink                                                                               Tom
Logged
Matthew (OV)


View Profile
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2007, 10:54:51 PM »

Tom,

Have you tried a big Phoenix speaker with the Soundtraxx system?  Particulcarly enclosed like you've got it there, I think you'll be happier.

If your tartar sauce cup fails, you might try the bottom half (or so) of a soup can.... particularly if you pack around it with fibreglass or something. It's a bit stiffer, and tends to provide more oomph for your buck.

Matthew (OV)
Logged
Colorado

View Profile
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2007, 01:09:36 AM »

So it has the same oomph as the HO Sountraxx?
Logged
Tom Lapointe


View Profile
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2007, 01:56:47 AM »

Colorado, I haven't heard the HO SOundtraxx, s I can't give you any inpuit that way.

Matthew, I've usually got loads of assorted small speakers kicking around here, so I've never had to buy any speakers; as a matter of fact, I have a large Phoenix speaker kicking around from that used 2K2 that came programmed for the Alco PA.  (But I'm NOT certain if it would fit the Shay tender, due to some mounting "ears" it had, without modifications; & I've also since acquired a USA Trains Alco PA, so it may wind up actually going in THERE! Wink).  I think the amplifier in the Tsunami itself is the limiting factor; if I want more audio power out of it, may wind up scratchbuilding a suitable amplifier for it myself (in fact, was looking at some spec sheets for 5 to 7 watt amp chips last night! Grin).                                                                                       Tom
Logged
Guilford Guy


View Profile
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2007, 04:46:57 PM »

I have yet to play with those PA's  Tongue
you still need to get the USAT NH streamliners  Wink Wink Wink Wink Wink
Logged

Alex

Tom Lapointe


View Profile
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2007, 11:29:15 PM »

Quote
you still need to get the USAT NH streamliners

Yes, GG, I want to - but I can give you "900" ($!) reasons why I haven't Cheesy!

(Yet! Wink)                                                                                      Tom
Logged
Art

View Profile
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2007, 10:15:59 AM »

Thanks for the fix. I do wonder if there is a way to raise the volume of the sound when you run on analog? It was ease with the older Sierra cards but I don't know much about this one.

Art
Logged
Guilford Guy


View Profile
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2007, 02:36:56 PM »

Quote
you still need to get the USAT NH streamliners

Yes, GG, I want to - but I can give you "900" ($!) reasons why I haven't Cheesy!

(Yet! Wink)                                                                                      Tom

heh you and I combined have ALOT of power Tongue 2 USAT F3's a USAT GP7 and an aristo swicher + your NH PA's hehe. Summer house will be done around may  and then I can finally start, bring over the PA's sometime  Smiley Wink Grin Cool
Logged

Alex

Tom Lapointe


View Profile
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2007, 02:17:23 AM »

Art, this is a very "basic" fix; the biggest issue is that (relative to the Phoenix boards) they didn't give the Tsunami much audio power (only 1 watt) to begin with. Sad  Although I've found it adequate for use here at home (both running indoors & on the outdoor layout, where I intentionally limit volume to as not to annoy  Angry the neighbors), there ARE times when more volume might be desirable.  I hit that recently when I ran the 3-trucker at a local train show; it had difficulty competing with the relatively high noise level in the hall.   Shocked

Another way out is to put a higher-powered audio amp after the Tsunami; I just ordered some electronic components last night to scratchbuild a small amplifier in the 5 ~ 7 watt range, should have them in a week or so; the amp circuit I was looking at looks pretty simple to build, I can probably build in an hour or so.  (I work as an electronics tech, so component-level building isn't a problem for me. Wink).

                                                                                                          Tom

Logged
Guilford Guy


View Profile
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2007, 08:44:03 AM »

Quote
you still need to get the USAT NH streamliners

Yes, GG, I want to - but I can give you "900" ($!) reasons why I haven't Cheesy!

(Yet! Wink)                                                                                      Tom

wait a second, you have a live steam shay, a three truck shay with sound and a lot o other miscellanious stuff and you can't think os specinding 900$ on passenger cars  Undecided Undecided Undecided Undecided
Logged

Alex

Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.


View Profile WWW
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2007, 01:33:21 AM »

Tom, how do you handle the ground side of the amplifier input?  Do you bring a ground out of the Tsunami or do you rely on a virtual ground between the bridge rectifiers in the Tsunami and in the supply for the amplifier?  I have played around using an instumentation style input (high impedance, differential input) using 4 op amps.  It worked, but seemed a bit of an overkill.
Logged

Growing older is mandatory but growing up is optional.
Tom Lapointe


View Profile
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2007, 05:39:45 AM »

Jim, I've yet to build the amp I've got in mind, so actual final configuration is probably going to be decided after a bit of "bread-boarding" & experimentation; at least as PRELIMINARY ideas, I may substitute a resistor for the existing Tsuanmi speaker (just to keep the Tsunami's existing amp "happy" Grin); I'll probably use coupling capacitors off BOTH sides (to the amp "ground" & "hot" inputs to keep any stray DC voltages from going where they SHOULDN'T Angry.  Again, I'll probably experiment a bit to determine exact cap values; just waiting now for the parts to come in.

Oh, and GG, in response to your comment:
Quote
wait a second, you have a live steam shay, a three truck shay with sound and a lot o other miscellanious stuff and you can't think os specinding 900$ on passenger cars
- um, have you ever heard of the term "BUDGETING"?!  Roll Eyes (I DIDN'T acquire all that "stuff' overnight!) Shocked - I also have "stuff" other than trains (such as heating & electric bills, rent, gas, etc. ) Huh? competing for funds.  There's also not a lot of point buying those cars at the moment; with the temperatures here being what they've been for the past week or so, I've actually "blown the dust" off my old indoor layout (very small compared to the garden line, with R1 (24" radius) curves); there's NO WAY the PA or USA cars will handle those curves!  Even if I wanted to drop another $900 on trains at the moment (& between the new Shay & the Springfield show, I went through more than that in the past few weeks!), I'd give priority to getting ANOTHER LIVE-STEAMER (preferably a 2-cylinder Shay) over the USA cars first! Wink (Hoping I can find one down at the ECLSTS!).                   Tom



 
Logged
Guilford Guy


View Profile
« Reply #14 on: February 10, 2007, 01:41:05 PM »

at this rate Ill get the cars before you do!
Logged

Alex

Pages: [1] 2 Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  
Powered by SMF | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!