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Hi Guys

I have a couple of diesels that the sound files have not turned out that well, one is the Western Ranger class 52 and the other a 47, both from a well known Loksound agent in the UK.

I am just about to purchase a Lokprogrammer to go with the ECoS controller and with laptop at the ready (which by-the-way is Windows Vista, will the Lokprogrammer still run on Vista? Obviously they only say XP etc in the blurb because Vista was not out then).

Anyway, scenario as follows;

Can you save a bespoke custom file sound before making changes?
Can you replace just the engine sounds and keep the horns, brakes etc?
On the Class 52 I cannot achieve any brake squeal, so wondered if it could be added separately.
If you wanted to make your own recordings and then upload to a function button, would simple recording equipment suffice? I refer specifically to those wonderful station announcements that Richard at DCC concepts included with the Deltic; I have a pal who does station announcements and said he will gladly say what I need while I record; the difficulty is I have little knowledge on converting the recording to usable space (I assume as a WAV file) on the chip via F whatever.

Closing doors, vehicle noise would all be of benefit, if you can play around with a custom file.

Finally, ESU say that with the programmer you can download many steam & diesel sounds for free, and change any spare chips to what you want. I have a SF Kestrel coming and have a couple of spare 3.5 chips, I note that there does seem to be an exact replication of engine sound but if it is the one that includes the station announcement in a non English speaking voice I would want to loose that part, also to replace the foreign 3 tone air horns.

Is anything I have said possible?

Thanks sorry to be a pain, I couldn't find the answers in a search.

Charley
 

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***Hello Charley :). Thats a serious font you chose for the post!

Re Vista - you may need to hunt for another USB driver file but apart from that it'll work fine - if its "fresh dealer stock" it should come with a vista compatible driver for the USB chipset. If not a bit of research will find you one.

Re sound mods:

Basically no, you cannot read back or save a sound file thats already in a decoder. Whats there is there. You can modify level or which function does what, but that is about all.

You can add your own self created sound files to an existing ESU sound file before loading though - you can also load then modify providing its done in one session - once the newly loaded loco is off the track or that sound file is closed, it'll need reloading again to allow modification. Be aware there are NO UK files available ex ESU within the very many free ones they offer.

So - what you have is what you have as far as the preloaded decoders go - what you achieve is up to you for files you create yourself, and while its a long learning curve to get it right, the possibilities are endless.

You can download "Audacity" for free - google it and you will find it - its a JMRI project and is a sound edit programme if you need one. Your recordings need to be saved as a wave file after you have finished creation...

You do not need to change the sample rate to suit LokSound - the Loksound does all that for you. Be aware you have limited memory available so you may have to delete some files to make space in order to add others to the ESU projects

Regards

Richard

PS:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Richard; that font thing size came out a bit big; ah well was just trying to pretty it up some
After reading this and looking on ESU there are indeed drivers fro Vista so at least that is fine, and thank you for confirming.

Methinks from what you say its going to be a learning curve from start and after several muck ups I may get the hang of it. I have a couple of diesels hard wired with Loksound 3.5 chips that run well and have no place on the layout so am quite happy to loose or muck them up whilst getting the hang of it.

Thank you again.

Have you got a good quality sound for a Kestral by-the-way? Your Deltic was a cracker


Charley
 

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*** Hi - thats good! I'm pleased you found the Vista reference with no problem.

Yes, its a learning curve but after the first few days of throwing it around the room it'll click and you will be on the way if you persist. Do join the LokSound group on Yahoo - some good specific help is available there and I also drop in there from time to time.

When you join, trawl the group files a little, as there are several improved translations of the German instructions there too (all original ESU english manuals for programmer and LS sound decoders are to say the least not as helpful as they could be)

I haven't cooked up Kestrel yet but I suppose it can be done - I'll have to see if I have any recordings here for it.... I may well have if I dig deep enough!

Richard
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
52 is not the best I have ever heard and the 47 requires some tweaking; if I can find an engine sound which matches the diesel I would prefer to spend the time adjusting CV's via the LP, delete the numerous repetitive horns (which fill functions for the sake of it [IMO]) and reassign other sounds such as station announcements etc, but in particular the 52 is poor (again IMO) from tick over to notching and back down again, it is not in the same class as 40's and 37's in particular.

The Howes 52 that I have heard on YT was excellent, the one I have of which there is only one on YT does not show slow running to a higher speed. I have adjusted CV's maximum and medium speed to try to compensate; no luck though as yet.

Charley
 

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have you contacted SWd about it?

Its not a chip i have hesrd really apart from u-tube but i do know some with it and they recon its one of the best yet!

Perhaps you could u-tube the problem?
 

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QUOTE (Piemanlarger @ 13 Jan 2009, 22:01) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>have you contacted SWd about it?

Its not a chip i have hesrd really apart from u-tube but i do know some with it and they recon its one of the best yet!

Perhaps you could u-tube the problem?
If I have time, I will YT it later then as you suggest speak to SWD regarding settings. I will use a separate 3 metre length of programme track and you will see the nothing and back on this small length at very low speeds.

CV 3 is at 54 and 4 at 22 so as you wil lsee from that she should take a while to build. Also there is noelectric start prior to engine sound other than using F6 (usually aux) in conjunction with F1, F10 carries the false start.

Charley
 

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QUOTE (Charley Farley Trelawney @ 14 Jan 2009, 09:20) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>CV 3 is at 54 and 4 at 22 so as you wil lsee from that she should take a while to build. Also there is noelectric start prior to engine sound other than using F6 (usually aux) in conjunction with F1, F10 carries the false start.

Charley

Cv 3 seems very high? I take it the chip as as set up by Swd and you have not altered anything?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
QUOTE (Piemanlarger @ 15 Jan 2009, 16:55) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Cv 3 seems very high? I take it the chip as as set up by Swd and you have not altered anything?

CV3 is at 50 as issued by Steve so it won't (or shouldn't have made much difference) took your advice though and have had a long chat with SWD and have been offered some positive advice. Much of teh problem may be because I am only running end to end on teh programming track and whilst utilising 0-128 speed steps I may be opening and closing the throttle in by a wider range that I should whilst running end to end.

The advice from Steve makes perfect sense and I fear this may well have been me trying to do to much to quickly instead of taking it easier on a short length; it is after all unrealistic to think on a scale half mile or so that one would blast away; in reality it would probably not do a lot more than 10% from tickover.

Don't get me wrong the sound is awesome; so much so that I have just placed an order for another Western Ranger.

As soon as time permits I will YT it. Mother is ill at the moment and much time is being spent on other things; I'm just having a skive at work on teh forum


Charley
 

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QUOTE (Piemanlarger @ 14 Jan 2009, 03:47) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>what exactly is wrong with the 52 and 47?

I have the 52 from SWD and I have to say, while it is very good, I think it could be better, but it is still may favourite loco.
I think the big problem is that the recordings were done on a preserved loco running on a preserved line at preserved line speeds. In reality, in their latter years, 52's were thrashed. Following is a video of a preserved 52 being opened up at Newton Abbott. This is how the SWD should sound. Make sure you use decent speakers and turn your volume up because this video is superb (I have no connection with it, just found it on YouTube):


That is what I would like to achieve with the SWD.
This is what the SWD sounds like (scroll down past my fitting article):

http://www.mrol.com.au/DCCSoundClass52.aspx

Too much engine idling. Although the instruction sheet says you can achieve full revs from stationary, I have not managed to achieve it. All that seems to happen is that the sound is the same and the loco takes off at an unreallistic speed.
To the other writer, their is braking sound, but it's not automatic as with some other loco sounds (eg the SWD class 50), you have to press a throttle button for it.
Note the noise just as the model starts off and the horn sounds (not sure how to describe it - sounds like a rattling plate to me) - that doesn't appear in the Newton Abbot video and I don't know what it is. It also didn't feature in a cab ride YouTube of Western Ranger which I found. Any ideas ?

I did make these suggestions to SWD, but they said that it is what it is, they can't change it and that the Western Ranger society had approved it - well it certainly sounds like a preserved loco being driven carefully, but that's not the same as on a main line how they really were driven!

Graham Plowman
 

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I have purchased an ESU Programmer to use with a Loksound decoder, (from South West Digital) and have connected with Windows 98.

Changing CV's works fine and produces the expected results, but assigning sounds just will not work.

Some sounds like the bell just do not appear, and other sounds like the whistle come out as a faint chuff.

To keep it simple I am simply trying to assign sounds as user sounds, and have downloaded the wave files from esu.

Can anybody advise?

Is there a compatability problem with Windows 98
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Garth

Your probably using version 2.6.6 and maybe you have updated to the latest version, I would guess that the problem is either drivers or incompatibility with the interface connection. How are you connecting from PC to the LP? USB to serial cable? or does your PC have serial to serial ability?

If usb to serial throw away that horrible cable that comes with it and get a new one, mine would not run with Vista so I run it on XP, the cable was still not liked so upgraded to a new one and since then no problems. It's a bit difficult to advise further without more info from you. User and random sounds need assigning, the yellow light of teh LP should be flashing when uploading. Do it in this order.

Create a project
SAVE IT to wherever you prefer. SAVE IT SAVE IT SAVE IT.
Sound update
Sound assignments
Decoder update.

If you could supply some further info it would be helpful.

Go to Yahoo Groups Loksound there is some serious help on hand. The ESU forums are OK (ish) Aside from Neil and I on the LP I don't find it that useful really.

(IMO) the LP is a real monster and requires some serious taming; it's capabilities are so vast and teh last ESU manual from 2004/5 is a guide but it honestly is full of holes. I have spent hours on it now and can really make it sing and dance; it took some time though to find all teh tricks it can do.

CFT
 

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Any purchase of an ESU decoder pre-loaded with UK sounds will not allow changing of the sounds. To change any sounds in the decoder, you will need the original sound project that was loaded in.

ESU sound decoders will only take full projects not individual sounds.

The first task with any 'poor' sound decoder is to check and improve the speaker installation. Make sure it is enclosed and the enclosure is airtight so that sound will not travel from the front to the rear of the cone.

Elliptical speakers are not as good as round ones.

The Lokprogrammer is as good as it's software which is very good indeed.

Managing and using your 'own' sounds is quite easy for steam, a lot less so for diesels.

Audacity is good. I use WavePad from NCH.au. Free to try.

Making your own sound projects is an art. Few master it quickly. I am still on a learning curve but tend to concentrate on steam.
 

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QUOTE (dwhite4dcc @ 17 Feb 2009, 06:24) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Elliptical speakers are not as good as round ones.

*** Hi David - I agree with the rest of your post but the above bit is simply not correct. Oval speakers are quite capable of being exceptionally good, and in many model train installs, are markedly superior to round speakers.... this applies to the ESU large oval as well as others.

Think back to hi-fi as well - the Kef B139 woofer was a ery famous oval speaker (6x9) and is still sold to this day - it is without doubt an exceptionally nice woofer/loudspeaker!

Richard
 

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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 17 Feb 2009, 12:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>*** Hi David - I agree with the rest of your post but the above bit is simply not correct. Oval speakers are quite capable of being exceptionally good, and in many model train installs, are markedly superior to round speakers.... this applies to the ESU large oval as well as others.

Richard

I think every project has its best speaker set up, as well as speaker position. i.e, with the bachmann 37 most people who have heard the different set ups i have all agreed 2 x 23 ml in the tanks was by far the "best" sound.
 

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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 17 Feb 2009, 12:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>*** Hi David - I agree with the rest of your post but the above bit is simply not correct. Oval speakers are quite capable of being exceptionally good, and in many model train installs, are markedly superior to round speakers.... this applies to the ESU large oval as well as others.

Think back to hi-fi as well - the Kef B139 woofer was a ery famous oval speaker (6x9) and is still sold to this day - it is without doubt an exceptionally nice woofer/loudspeaker!

Richard

Hi Richard, nice to cross posts with you again!!

As always,my comments are based on experience. I have yet to find an elliptical speaker that I can get to perform as well as round ones. This includes at least one of the newer enclosed ones, all of which are rather too large for my purposes. True this was a literal bench test but again, as you know, the place that the speaker is placed can affect it's performance greatly.

I appreciate that there have been some remarkable efforts in the Hi Fi world and I am old enough to have heard some of them but again where they are greatly affects their perceived quality and the music that is playing on them, if badly recorded, defeats even the best speaker.

I sincerely believe that the Loksound Micro would be better sold without the speaker that is supplied. I believe that the current lack of any supplied enclosure is less than ideal but I assume that said Micro has been produced as is for a reason that may not include UK (or indeed Oz ) models.

As to small speakers, it is my eternal regret that I cannot safely link an SL74 8 ohm speaker to an ESU chip and, even if I did, it would not perform as well as it does on the virtually unreprogrammable SL chip.

Having said that, I have played with a beautiful 32 ohm speaker that absolutely transformed a Digitrax sound chip performance.
 
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