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> Sound chip in all locomotives?, Is it necessary or overkill?
Cobber55
post 21 Mar 2011, 03:01
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I have searched to see if this has been discussed previously before posting.

I'd like to hear your opinions on the issue of how many locomotives on your layout have been or are intended to be fitted with sound decoders. I currently have a Class 25 and a Class 47 with sound chips and one more without. I'm considering a Class 24 for my next purchase. I prefer buying them with factory fitted sound decoders, such as those from Bachmann. So should I go for a sound chipped one or not? Can you have too many fitted with sound?

This is a question for those who want to have sound decoders in their locomotives of course. I'll take it as read that if you are not fitting them at all then your answer will be 'none'.

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Brossard
post 21 Mar 2011, 03:45
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Once you start putting sound chips in your locos, its hard to know where to stop. All but one of mine for our club layout have sound (the one that doesn't is a Heljan Cl 15 and there is no sound available yet). I kind of see sound as neat but a bit of gimmick. At shows, the ambient noise is so loud that the sound is all but drowned out.

I am planning my own layout at present but right now I am not planning on doing sound for it (cost is pretty high for one thing).

Cheers

John


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Doddsy
post 21 Mar 2011, 05:04
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I find that the sound option is a one way road. Once you have one sound equipped loco, they all need smile.gif to be fitted, IMHO! Sound just adds that extra dimension. I am now considering looking at the ambient sound option for the actual layout too!

I hear people complain about the fidelity of some sound decoders. I don't care. I like the fact that brakes squeal when coming to a halt, flange squeal, Guard's whistles, air brakes, doors opening and closing and the sound of engines and motors. Bring it on!

Sound! I love it!

I'll shut the door on me way out - shall I? biggrin.gif

Cheers

Ian
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Casey
post 21 Mar 2011, 06:19
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I have four sound fitted locomotives(two class 20's and two class 25's). And very good they are too. I also have ten non sound locomotives(Five class 26's and five class 33's). I love the sound of my locomotives but there are times when I run them without sound(especially when I'm listening to the Archers). I will have all the locomotives sound fitted at some stage, but I will still operate them without sound on occassions.
The sound does give a different dimension to operations, but I don't think that it is essential.


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IanP
post 21 Mar 2011, 08:54
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I totally agree with the others, once you start it's very hard to stop, Yes they are far more expensive and need to come down in price, but that just means it takes me a bit longer to save up for them.

I have (so far) a 25, 20, 55, 37, 47, and one steam, the Jubilee Kolhapur in sound. I just fancied a steam sound one day, it was a bit of an impulse buy.

The 47 and 37 are both Howes sound and are far better than Bachmann's sound (well to my ears they are)
The worst one has to be the cl 20, but i have a Howes chip on its way this week for that one, and once its here i intend to send the chip out of that back to Howes to have the cl 42 sound reblown onto it.

I have also fitted the Bass reflex speakers to the 37 and the Kolhapur, they really bring the loco's to life and intend to do some more speaker changes in the near future.

So as you can see, I'm another thats into sound, and like Doddsy, I'm now starting to think about adding ambient sound, mainly for the shed and station area. Next door will love me lol.
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chaz
post 21 Mar 2011, 09:10
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I would go along with the others - all or nothing. Of course it's a matter of taste but us converts would have to say "if you can afford, do it".

I have 15 locos on my 7mm layout, split evenly steam and early diesel - all are running with DCC sound. I wouldn't go back to what one of my operating team calls "stealth mode".

Chaz
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Cobber55
post 21 Mar 2011, 10:17
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Thanks for those replies. It helps me with my forward planning. I think I'll look to sound fitted locomotives where possible and when budget allows.



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Andrew Rolland
post 21 Mar 2011, 12:59
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I've got nearly 100 locos collected over the last 32 years and only 3 have sound chips in them. As I'm not planning on selling the car/house/wife (well the last one is tempting at times, defo not the first) to fund 90+ sound decoders, I won't be fitting sound to them. I've got plans for sound chipping my HST, Class 37, Class 57, Tornado, a Princess Royal and a Class 40 and that's about it. I will do this over a considerable time, plus I still need to buy a Class 40 biggrin.gif

With regards sounds.

I would buy the loco you want then go about purchasing a chip with Howes Sound on it. The Howes sounds are better IMO than the default sounds you get from say Bachmann when you buy a sound chipped loco straight out. I've bought a Howes sound chip from Trains on Time and the quality is amazing, plus Daniel at Trains on Time is very helpful.

Buying the loco then fitting the sound chip later will cost more in the long term but less in the short term. Like ~60 for a loco then next month or a few months later buy the sound chip for ~100 rather than one outlay of 140 for a sound equipped loco.

Sound does add that extra dimension as others have said and it is tempting to have them all snorting away.......It's expensive though.....
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Robert Stokes
post 21 Mar 2011, 17:18
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Sound-equipped locos should be called H-locos. H is not for Hornby but heroin because they are addictive!


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class 153
post 21 Mar 2011, 19:56
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I would not use sound because if i got sound for one train i would have to get sound for them all and that would cost alot of money. Also what if an older loco has no sound for it? It would look unrealistic. But i would put sounds such as ambience or station announcments with speakers hidden as that would not cost alot to do.
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dwb
post 21 Mar 2011, 20:03
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I have some sound locos and in an ideal world they all would be but they will have to take their place in the queue behind other bits and pieces for the layout. Whilst I haven't yet got two of a particular type of loco with sound in, if that case should arise, I would be tempted to get the second sound chip from a different supplier to provide some variety. Currently I have sound decoders from (in no particular order) SWD, DCC Concepts, Hornby and Bachmann.

David


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Moonraker
post 21 Mar 2011, 23:41
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Whatever number of sound locos you have, the essential thing is to switch off the sound when they are not running. There is nothing worse than visiting a layout with six or so diesels all going at the same time.

Peter
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Cobber55
post 21 Mar 2011, 23:49
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Thanks for those further replies. It is appreciated. I'm in the position of not having a large back catalogue of locomotives to consider, which for me is fortunate. I'll look at into Howes after-market offering. I am not really keen on carving into the inner parts of locomotives to fit speakers etc. I know it can be done as I have done it with On30 sized Shays and so on. It's just not an aspect of the hobby that I enjoy. That's the appeal of the factory fitted ones for me. The two Bachmann ones I have are LokSound so I could have them reblown if needed, although I am very happy with how they sound now. The Class 25 is particularly nice. My Class 47 just needs to be tweeked a bit, mainly in volume.

I was mainly wondering if you can have too many sound fitted locomotives on a home layout. I'm not gettng the impression that this is an issue, apart from turning off those not in use.

Thanks


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TheBufoon
post 22 Mar 2011, 00:51
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Hi I now have about 30 locos, but only 5 with sound. The ones with sound are: Hornby EWS 08, Bachmann DB Schenker 37, Hornby EWS 60 & 2 x Bachmann 66's DB Schenker & EWS. All are ESU LokSound factory sounds.

I do really enjoy the sound locos that's why they are chipped, but I feel that there is no need to chip the other 25 (as the quality of the locos doesn't warrant the 90 chip), even if I could afford it. I do try to limit the purchase of new locos without sound, easier said than done!

OK if you have a very large layout & a very large bank balance, then sound chip them all! rolleyes.gif

Bring on the noise! For me as already mentioned this does add an extra dimension, especially for DCC modern diesels.

I have heard of people complaining about DCC Sound making too much noise at exhibitions, they need to get a life, or just accept the fact that model railways have reached the micro chip generation & it isn't just a hobby for old men playing with steam trains!

Of course no disrespect intended to old men playing with steam trains, or, old men with VERY LOUD DCC SOUND STEAM TRAINS, OR DIESELS!

Cheers, Chris. biggrin.gif


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MikeDunn
post 22 Mar 2011, 09:42
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QUOTE (Cobber55 @ 21 Mar 2011, 03:01) *
I'd like to hear your opinions on the issue of how many locomotives on your layout have been or are intended to be fitted with sound decoders.

Hi Barry,

Decided that your Live Steamers are too good & showing up the silents then ? wink.gif

At present, I have no sound locos (barring my LS stable ! But that's different cool.gif ). But ... I do plan on getting Clun Castle when she is released (if only because of local interest); SWMBO has pre-ordered Sparrowhawk ohmy.gif ... and odds-are the smelly can Class 47 Ely Cathedral will get a sound decoder (mainly due to having the speaker space already there).

Other than those ... no plans.

Mike
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