iPhone speaker comparisons

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tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#1
I installed the iPhone 7 plus speaker sample I got a couple of days ago, into one of the Athearn SD40's that still had the iP4s in it (the wiring to the rear lights had "popped" one of the fans up, so it had to come apart). After trimming the mounting bits off the speaker, it was the same width as the iP6s plus, installed in the other similar loco and slimmer in thickness than the iP4s by about 1.5mm.
Soundwise, comparing it with the iP6s, I couldn't detect any appreciable difference, but I'll ask for opinions at the club as well.

What is most notable with these phone speakers, is the variations in size and shape they come in, even within the same model.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#2
Further to my previous post. I was trying to find a picture of the exact speaker I got (ringer-buzzer-loudspeaker with aerial (peels off)) but even though it looks like the one in this picture, the spring contacts that you solder the wires to is, in the case of mine, in a different place. Not that that matters as far as the use it's being put to. As they are the only contacts, it is a bit of a mystery as to why there appears to be 2 sections to the metal plate.
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tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#4
Ever try those sugar cube speakers or is there limited space.
In the case of these 2 locos,, they are from the 1st RTR Athearn's that were produced with sound or sound ready. The speakers fitted sit in the weight over the rear truck which has been hollowed out to provide an enclosure. They were awful. The sound ready version has the same weight, but with a removable extra piece of weight filling the space. There might be a better sugarcube that would suit. The weight as it is, has more room above it than the earlier RTR's, which almost fill right up to the top of the shell, so some sacrifice in the weight has been made with these newer versions.

The iP4s speaker was mentioned as a good inexpensive speaker, so I got some of them to try. Even being as slim as they are (about 5mm or so), obviously they can still be a bit tight. The iP6s plus can sit, flat on top of the weight with more clearance from the shell and the iP7 plus is a tad better. They both "fire" out of the end, which has a slight step down and hangs nicely out over the decoder, directly under the Dynamic fans. The iP4s fire out of 1 side only. The engines I have are fitted with the early Tsunami (generation 1). The latest models use a version of Soundtraxx's Econami decoder.

I have also just installed an Econami ECO-PNP decoder into an older RTR Athearn SD45 with a iP6s plus sitting above the decoder (double side taped to the shell under the Dynamic fans). The Econami, having a 2amp amplifier instead of the Tsunami 1's, 1amp, makes a huge difference in the available volume. It helps in that the main sounds, such as exhaust/prime mover, horn and bell, don't need as much, leaving more capacity for the other sounds to be heard.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#6
I was watching/listening to a demo by Rawerer? on Y'tube of a LS50X15X14 twin dumbo which had great sound, but too big for most HO installations because of the size that would require weight sacrifices to be made, hence the attraction of these very slim in height iPhone speakers. I was also viewing some of the actual replacement into phone videos, to try and see how and where they went. The iP7 & 8 speakers have a sound exit that is obviously designed to slip into a matching socket, and it appears there could be an extra resonator chamber that enhances the sound. Some experimentation might be in order.
 

CambriaArea51

Well-Known Member
#7
They make different sizes,and other manufactures make small sugar cube type speakers.Look for ones that'll fit N scale for you limited space requirements.
 

KB02

Well-Known Member
#8
I have also just installed an Econami ECO-PNP decoder into an older RTR Athearn SD45 with a iP6s plus sitting above the decoder (double side taped to the shell under the Dynamic fans). The Econami, having a 2amp amplifier instead of the Tsunami 1's, 1amp, makes a huge difference in the available volume. It helps in that the main sounds, such as exhaust/prime mover, horn and bell, don't need as much, leaving more capacity for the other sounds to be heard.
I've got a PNP pumping through an iPhone 4 speaker on a U25C and the sound is AMAZING!
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#9
I bought some HTC One M8 speakers in their OEM enclosures, on Gene's (Genetk44) recommendation some time ago but their contacts to solder to is a very narrow trace, which is very difficult to separate and solder wires to, so I got some of the speakers alone. I tried one out in a Proto 2K GP20 with an enclosure made from Balsawood sheet, also using a Tsunami1. The sound was quite good. I'm going to rehash it by changing the rear light's 3mm LED to an SMD which will then (hopefully) allow for a bigger enclosure made out of polystyrene.
 





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