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Installing iphone speakers in locos, any videos?

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  • Member since
    July, 2018
  • 70 posts
Installing iphone speakers in locos, any videos?
Posted by IDRick on Thursday, October 11, 2018 11:01 PM

I've read that people have installed Iphone 4 speakers to the dcc equipped locos with great success.  I'm a newbie relative to dcc and sound.  I understand how the decoders are installed but do not understand where the connections are made to the Iphone speaker and how it's mounted in the loco.  Anyone have a pictorial description or video on installing these speakers?

  • Member since
    August, 2003
  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
  • 6,412 posts
Posted by gmpullman on Friday, October 12, 2018 5:30 AM

I've been using the Loksound 50321 speaker with the universal enclosure which gives me some flexibility since you can stack the sound chamber pieces in different configurations.

https://www.modeltrainstuff.com/esu-50321-loksound-speaker-11mm-x-15mm-square-8-ohms-0-5w-with-sound-chamber-set/

 

Here's a pair I installed in an old Proto E8:

 LL_E8_DCC by Edmund, on Flickr

By design the E8 had a nice sized shelf right behind the cab wall. At the rear end I made a pair of legs out of styrene to support the speaker over the truck gearbox. The violet and green wires are my speakers.

Streamlined Backshop has lots of "sugarcube" information but you have to dig for it — the website is a little "busy" looking. There are a couple videos there, too.

http://www.sbs4dcc.com/tutorialstipstricks/sugarcubespeakernotes.html

Use very small, flexible decoder wire and be sure to tin it first. Lightly touch the iron to the little spring clips on the speaker. I have some stuff that is actually intended for making tee shirt art but it also makes excellent sealant for the speaker enclosures.

https://tinyurl.com/y9j59287

I still don't know how the sound gets out of that little box. It really seems like the speaker is backward to what we're used to BUT they sound great for their size.

Good Luck, Ed

  • Member since
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  • From: Bradford, Ontario
  • 8,711 posts
Posted by hon30critter on Friday, October 12, 2018 6:11 AM

Hi IDRick:

I have installed iphone speakers in a lot of locomotives and as Ed said, they work great!

I strongly recommend that you spend some time studying the videos offered by Streamlined Backshop that Ed referred to. There is a wealth of information there.

Dave

  • Member since
    July, 2018
  • 70 posts
Posted by IDRick on Saturday, October 13, 2018 3:14 PM

Thanks guys, very helpful!

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    January, 2010
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Posted by peahrens on Saturday, October 13, 2018 5:11 PM

My first such project was replacing a Genesis Tsunami & oval speaker with a LokSound Select and dual "micro" (not necessarily iPhone 4) speakers.  (Never mind that some advise not to mix sizes in the same enclosure.)   The first photo shows how the wires are soldered to the tabs.  The subsequent photos show more on the 0.015" styrene enclosure construction (CA glued, plus silicon at the joints for good measure).  Following that, there are several YouTube videos about the project.

 IMG_4791 by Paul Ahrens, on Flickr

 IMG_4793 by Paul Ahrens, on Flickr

 IMG_4795 by Paul Ahrens, on Flickr

 IMG_4804 by Paul Ahrens, on Flickr

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUWio5X4gxc

Note that there are a variety of speakers (size, brand, tech specs) available.  I like the 13x18mm size for HO, older Knowles or newer CUI) which will fit in narrow hood diesels.  I have installed as many as 4 in a loco in one or two enclosures.  I like to build my own enclosures as I can then easily optimize the physical fit.  Increasing enclosure size has a significant effect on lower frequency capability.  It is often critical that the enclosure be properly sealed, as leakage often can create an annoying buzz due to front/back interference.  There are technical arguments about whether the membrane should face in or out.  

Some manufacturers sell decoders and appropriate micro speakers.  TCS WowSound sells "kits" for given locos, decoder, speaker, etc., but I have not checked out whether that includes micro options.  See their installation webpages and your loco type may be illustrated.  LokSound does sell micros.  Note that you need to ensure your speaker(s) net impedence (ohms) seen by the decoder needs to be within the decoder sound amp specs.  Some require 8 ohms, but cannot tolerate 4 ohms (e.g., to 8 ohm speakers in parallel).  When combining speakers, one has to figure the net impedence of the assembly.  The LokSound Selects can handle 4 - 16 ohms.  

It can get complex (and interesting) so you may want to pick a simple setup for your first project.  I enjoy approaching these projects.

Paul

Modeling HO with a transition era UP bent

  • Member since
    July, 2006
  • From: Bradford, Ontario
  • 8,711 posts
Posted by hon30critter on Saturday, October 13, 2018 5:21 PM

peahrens
When combining speakers, one has to figure the net impedence of the assembly.

There is a good explanation of how to calculate impedence when multiple speakers are wired together on this website (Streamlined Backshop - same website Ed referred to above but different page):

http://www.sbs4dcc.com/tutorialstipstricks/wiringmultispeakers.html

Dave

 

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