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> MyLocoSound sound decoder review
Doug
post 14 Feb 2012, 11:53
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I have been testing the MyLocoSound sound decoder for the last few days. An interesting option for many modellers and perhaps an alternative to some of the products on the market.

Click here for the review thumbsup.gif


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trainsntrees
post 14 Feb 2012, 14:39
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Hi

Very good review and interesting, but for me the idea of this being a cheap alternative is not so clear. At 44 plus the cost of a reasonable decoder at 25 (not top range) that is now 69 and I need to find room for two decoders.

For 45 I could have it all with a Digitrax sound, though I understand the quality is limited or for just 8 pounds more at 77 I could have a Zimo with recorded sound and a top notch decoder all in one package.

It sounds a nice idea but unless you want the sound in a coach or wagon you can swap between locos, it is not that cheap.

Regards

Kal


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Doug
post 14 Feb 2012, 14:57
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Ok, point taken, but I have many locos that I have added DCC decoders to over the years. 20 to 30 off the top of my head. Now I have 4 or 5 sound locos and I find myself running those more often. The non-sound locos feel naked.

This MyLocoSound solution is a way to run a previously chipped loco with sound without having to rewire everything and without having to get rid of a quite pricey Lenz Gold decoder.


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trainsntrees
post 14 Feb 2012, 15:05
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Hi

Your point taken too smile.gif

IT is certainly a good option where you already have decoders you have invested in. I also think I have a few oldies that I couldn't justify a new decoder in, but swapping a carriage between them could be just the job.

Regards

Kal


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Kal


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Jools M
post 14 Feb 2012, 17:03
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would have been nice to have had a review of the DC version to


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Doug
post 14 Feb 2012, 18:43
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QUOTE (Jools M @ 14 Feb 2012, 18:03) *
would have been nice to have had a review of the DC version to

Why doesn't someone who has a DC layout get in touch with Peter (Moonraker) and come up with a DC review. I'll help with the HTML and presentation if needed. Jools, how about you?


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neil_s_wood
post 14 Feb 2012, 21:46
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QUOTE (Doug @ 15 Feb 2012, 01:57) *
Ok, point taken, but I have many locos that I have added DCC decoders to over the years. 20 to 30 off the top of my head. Now I have 4 or 5 sound locos and I find myself running those more often. The non-sound locos feel naked.

This MyLocoSound solution is a way to run a previously chipped loco with sound without having to rewire everything and without having to get rid of a quite pricey Lenz Gold decoder.

That's a very good point Doug. I had a large pile of Lenz Gold left over after converting all my stock to sound.

cheers

Neil


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15A
post 14 Feb 2012, 22:18
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Digitrax do a 'piggyback' sound chip like this and it's 10 cheaper at 34.14p. You can load your own, or the free British sounds avaiablev on the Internet, to this chip though (Providing you have a PR3 of course)

Regards

Max
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pauliebanger
post 14 Feb 2012, 22:46
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QUOTE (neil_s_wood @ 14 Feb 2012, 21:46) *
That's a very good point Doug. I had a large pile of Lenz Gold left over after converting all my stock to sound.

cheers

Neil



Neil,

That's no doubt true, but you do not have to haul a van around all the time. I know what I would prefer. I remember way back when in the early days of DCC when sometimes attaching a van or coach was the only way you could instal DCC. God forbid that we are going backwards to that crude illusion again.

The size of these things is like the large scale Zimo MX695 or Loksound XL.

I'm with Kal on this one, less than 80 gets you a fully user loadable sound decoder with the best motor control in the business and a 3W amplifier. Zimo MX644 and MX645. All my sound locos run with sound that I have recorded from the real thing, and I am happier with that.

And they have Start-up and shutdown sequences, 8 randomly generated sounds, automatic sounds linked to moving off like cylinder draining, acknowledgment whistle/horn, air brake release, and of course automatic brake sound. You can add panatograph raising and lowering sounds, speed-related thyristor and electric motor sounds and even turbocharger sounds with their own controllable dynamics so they can lag behind the engine either incresing or decreasing in revs.

The model rail world is very diverse, and far be it from me to dictate what others should think or do. But, whilst this product will no doubt find a market, I will not compromise on sound quality and convenience (eg solo locos) for the sake of what, when analysed, is a very modest cost saving indeed.

Kind regards,

Paul
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Long funnel ...
post 14 Feb 2012, 22:59
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Thank you very much for the careful piece reviewing the MyLocoSound installed in the the GWR pannier.
It was interesting to compare it with my recent acquisition. I paid twice the price for my Pannier 's Howesound decoder with a speaker which I installed so it was partially visible (though painted Matt black) in the cab - with a driver and fireman either side to mask it.
I agree the sound from the van (to which the loco is manacled) has a profundity which my cab fitted speaker lacks. But then set against that, my loco is footloose and free.

But where I think my "real" sound pays off compared with the synthesised sound is a really authentic Swindon whistle, the characteristic beat of the vacuum pump and some exquisite wheel grinding. These are sounds truly evocative of the pannier and it is fortunate that they are OK through the small speaker fitted in my cab because they are all relatively high frequency.

It will be interesting to hear how the range of synthesisied sounds like brake squeal evolve.

In short, it seems you gets what you pays for!

LF&T
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Doug
post 15 Feb 2012, 09:22
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We do like to drive our locos around by themselves, hey

I have so many nice little steamers that I really struggled to get decoders into - this was because even only a few years ago, locos were made with not much thought to DCC decoder installation.

So now some of these can run around pulling a few wagons, which isn't such a bad thing.


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pauliebanger
post 15 Feb 2012, 11:18
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Doug,

Check out next month's Hornby Magazine.

I have an article showing how to overcome the sound in small loco problem that does not require permanent attachment to rolling stock.

I converted a Hornby J94 0-6-0 ST to sound with firebox glow and stay alive capacitor without resorting to having the speaker on display on the foot plate. I even retained the ballast weight in the boiler. This model runs on the HM exhibition layout 'Bolsover and Seven Lane Pit.

My own model has the above plus smoke and (DCC Concepts) working loco lamps front and rear.

And the sounds are from a real J94.

You need a tiny Zimo MX648 for this, much smaller than lok micro.

Paul
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Richard Johnson
post 15 Feb 2012, 14:47
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*** LOL, I've done that in a J94 with a Micro Paul :-). However I did dispose of the hornby weight, substituting half its size in a material more than twice as heavy per CC - good old real lead. Its amazing how "not heavy" the supposed H and B weights are!

I do look forward to reading the article - you always explain things well, its nice to see how others do it and there's always a detail or two to learn from. Keep them coming!

(I really will have a go with some Zimo soon - I am also quite interested to look closer at their control system too - I like some of their concepts and ideas far better than other EU brands)

kind regards

Richard


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pauliebanger
post 15 Feb 2012, 16:00
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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 15 Feb 2012, 14:47) *
*** LOL, I've done that in a J94 with a Micro Paul :-). However I did dispose of the hornby weight, substituting half its size in a material more than twice as heavy per CC - good old real lead. Its amazing how "not heavy" the supposed H and B weights are!

I do look forward to reading the article - you always explain things well, its nice to see how others do it and there's always a detail or two to learn from. Keep them coming!

(I really will have a go with some Zimo soon - I am also quite interested to look closer at their control system too - I like some of their concepts and ideas far better than other EU brands)

kind regards

Richard



Richard,

LOL right back at you ohmy.gif) I was going to mention I used a DCC Concepts Stay Alive cap, but I'm not going to now that you've been so mean to me! ohmy.gif)

I did say I did mine without loosing the Hornby ballast weight which is very bulky, (but less toxic than lead?) so it's not the same thing is it? Ha Ha.

How on earth did you manage to squeeze enough Function Outputs to do 4 individual loco lamps, firebox flicker and smoke generator from the Micro? Generally, Loksound aren't exactly well endowed in this area.

Anyway, you show me yours and I'll show you mine Ha ha!!

What I was really saying to Doug, however, was that it is possible to fit genuine sounds to small locos without the old fashioned 'add an unnecessary vehicle to carry your extra components' method. ESU or Zimo is a matter of choice, but either will provide a more elegant solution than the one proposed at the start of this thread.

Kind regards,

Paul

EDIT. I didn't put those stupid emoticons in, the forum software misinterpreted my keystrokes. Goodness knows what they are meant to convey, but a tongue in cheek smile is what I intended.
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Richard Johnson
post 15 Feb 2012, 16:24
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*** I thought I was being very nice to you - that was the intent anyway!!!

Yes, re the weight - that was why I mentioned we removed it and substituted lead.

Small locs certainly can be done without that much stress in many cases - but can be a delight AND a pain to do - We did a really nice sound install in the Hornby Pug recently, but the mechanism is a dog and pickups worse, so in the end I am not sure it was really a success - the sound was quite good though.

We have managed to get sound in some surprisingly tight N scale as well, but again, the issue is time and effort, and the costs of doing it commercially are a bit eye watering.

Installing without modification to chassis as you have done is a good realistic result. More important than all the fancy stuff in the world, as the average modeller really doesn't like to take a hacksaw and file to his locos! Thats why I like your articles - they are clever without being intimidating, and thats all to the good for the hobby.

Richard


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