Kato HO SD80MAC Loksound install anyone?

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tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#1
I'm embarking on the title's install, have the shell and walkway off and a dedoder with 8 pin plug for it. Not too many handy places to put speaker/s though. (DCC ready model). Just replaced the OEM speakers on 2 Athearn SD40's with the Athearn spec Tsunamis with iPhone4s speakers and enclosures. Got rid of the horrible scratchy, tinny sound the stock ones have. At least the Kato doesn't have all those dangly wires Athearn uses.
 

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
#3
I'm embarking on the title's install, have the shell and walkway off and a dedoder with 8 pin plug for it. Not too many handy places to put speaker/s though. (DCC ready model). Just replaced the OEM speakers on 2 Athearn SD40's with the Athearn spec Tsunamis with iPhone4s speakers and enclosures. Got rid of the horrible scratchy, tinny sound the stock ones have. At least the Kato doesn't have all those dangly wires Athearn uses.
How many iPhone speakers are you using? I've been debating just 2, a full 4, or 6.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#4
How many iPhone speakers are you using? I've been debating just 2, a full 4, or 6.
For the SD40's I got this one with the aerial, which is held to the casing by 2 very tiny screws and sticky tape, easily removed and doesn't affect the speaker otherwise. 51 x 15 x 5mm. Sound port is on the side of the round end. has a gasket that requires removal to gain a gap to let the sound out. Sat it on top of the old speakers housing without modification.


I found a Y-tube review by a German fellow for the SD80MAC where he used a single Zimo cube right at the rear. Had very good sound. The main problem with the Kato is that there are only 2 LED's serving all the lights via plastic "tubes" and they take up what other space is available, will post some pics later.
 

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
#5
Oh, that doesn't look anything like the iphone speakers I have. The ones I have (I bought a gross of them) are much thinner and more rectangular.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#6
Oh, that doesn't look anything like the iphone speakers I have. The ones I have (I bought a gross of them) are much thinner and more rectangular.
The reason I used them was I found a YT vid from someone who had actually used them in those late release SD40's. Didn't show a how to, but the sound is far and away better than the originals. I guessed if he could get them in, I should too. The speakers, with subwoofer, I've got attached to my computer are pretty good, and gave a good representation. These iP ones sound even better with the shell on. The wiring contacts are seperated which made the soldering of wires to them much easier than the HTC one 8/with enclosure, which has coated traces.

Like you, I also have a pile of other ones without enclosures I've yet to experiment with, the aforementioned HTC and the iP4s. The latter are very tiny, rectangular ones, unlike the round ones used in the SD40's. (can just make out the shape through the port in the side). It's a bit of a puzzle as to why they have these long enclosures. I cut open one of the HTC one 8 to to find exactly the same speaker as the loose ones (they have an exposed speaker face) to find most of the cavity filled with sponge, so what the purpose of it's overall size is, no idea.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#7
Pics of the SD80MAC opened. The only instructions that came with the loco said to remove the couplers. That's only needed if you want to remove the walkway as well as the topshell, they are seperate pieces. The shell does need to be removed first any way, so leave the couplers in place while removing it. You will need to remove the white handrails on the cab nose first too.
The shell is held to the walkway and the chassis under the walkway by 3 clips and a locater tab in the center (not a clip). A pair of small clips at the front, accessible from beneath the walkway, just in front of the truck. These you press backwards and up through their small square hole, to raise the cab front off the walkway. Do one, then the other, placing a packer into the gap to prevent them re-engaging.
DSC05069.JPG DSC05072.JPG
In the left pic you can make out the peg on each side just near the front of the cab. On the right are the 2 rectangular holes in the walkway they clip through. Sorry I took these after removal, but they're easy to find.

Won't let me add more pics to this post via the insert image option for some reason, so will post this and hopefully be able to do so in the next.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#8
Positions of the 2 pairs of clips that hold the shell on, these pass down through the walkway and clip onto the chassis. Press inwards on the sides of the shell next to them and wriggle to lift and seperate. I struggled with these I think by pressing to hard and jamming them against the back edge of the holes. I noticed after I got the shell off that there were protrusions on the chassis, restricting how far the clips could be pressed inwards. It would seem the purpose is to prevent easy disengagement of the shell when lifting the loco by hand. You may need a flat, square tipped blade to insert between walkway and the shell's bottom edge to ease the clips up through those holes. Note the center locating tab. It doesn't clip.
DSC05057.JPG DSC05058.JPG
I also found the reason for not getting the insert image to work. Have to click the "From computer" tab to reactivate that function

DSC05062.JPG DSC05063.JPG
This is the view to the back and the front of the inside of the shell showing the plastic light tubes coming inwards towards the LEDS on the circuit board.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#9
There is another light tube mounted at the front of the walkway that takes light from the single front LED (works both H/light and Ditch lights. Non flashing in this DC version) and passes up through the gap in the front weight to get there.
DSC05067.JPG DSC05076.JPG
That tube/s is supported in grooves in the front of the chassis you can just see at bottom left. The wires from the pick-ups travel across the tops of the weights and are clipped to the board near it's middle. The board is on a plastic mount, clipped over the top of the motor. Has only an 8 pin socket.
DSC05081.JPG
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#10
With those light tubes taking up spaces where it might have been possible to mount a sound board except directly on top of the DC board, right at the back for a speaker, looks like the most logical space for it. I guess I could dismantle the Kobo Shops version I have to see how they did it, they would at least have done away with the DC board. This one was easier to handle as it is without the detail parts installed.
 

Mark R.

Custom Painter
#11
Rather timely .... I just finished installing a Loksound decoder and 16mm X 35mm speaker / enclosure in a Kato SD80 MAC tonight ! The speaker was a perfect fit right under the front light bar in the front half of the shell roof. This worked well as I like to have the speaker as close to the exhaust as possible. I used a 73400 Loksound decoder and mounted it to the roof as well directly above the DC board. The 8-pin plug made for a simple way of connecting the shell to the chassis. In all, it was about a 20 minute install.

Mark.
 

Mark R.

Custom Painter
#12
Like you, I also have a pile of other ones without enclosures I've yet to experiment with, the aforementioned HTC and the iP4s. The latter are very tiny, rectangular ones, unlike the round ones used in the SD40's. (can just make out the shape through the port in the side). It's a bit of a puzzle as to why they have these long enclosures. I cut open one of the HTC one 8 to to find exactly the same speaker as the loose ones (they have an exposed speaker face) to find most of the cavity filled with sponge, so what the purpose of it's overall size is, no idea.
The reason for the size of the enclosure is very carefully calculated in the design stage. Every speaker operates at its maximum potential with a properly designed enclosure. I don't recall the volume of the enclosures at the moment, but I believe the size of the cell phone speakers we use require around one to one and a half c.c. of internal volume. Any more or less, the efficiency of the speaker drops off. The foam in the enclosure is there to absorb any errant resonance the enclosure itself may pick up causing the enclosure itself to vibrate annoyingly.

I've been using the HTC One M8 speakers exclusively in all my own installs and install two wired in parallel to attain the 4 ohm load Loksound decoders work most efficiently at. I love them.

Mark.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#13
Rather timely .... I just finished installing a Loksound decoder and 16mm X 35mm speaker / enclosure in a Kato SD80 MAC tonight ! The speaker was a perfect fit right under the front light bar in the front half of the shell roof. This worked well as I like to have the speaker as close to the exhaust as possible. I used a 73400 Loksound decoder and mounted it to the roof as well directly above the DC board. The 8-pin plug made for a simple way of connecting the shell to the chassis. In all, it was about a 20 minute install.

Mark.
Very timely indeed! The decoder I got was from MB Klein's, a 73431 Select 6 AUX with SD90/43MAC-SD70MAC 16-710GB sounds, 8 pin. A friend at the club has the Lokprogrammer and tells me he can change the file to the 20Cyl version which is available on Kato's website. I looked at that 73400 decoder but wasn't sure about it. I did believe the Select decoders require 8ohm speakers, but I see that the 73400 is capable of using both 4 and 8ohm. The ones my friend uses are the ESU 50327 twin 16mm round speakers in a common enclosure, presumably 32mm x 16mm. I've listened to the ones he's put into several of his locos and they are very good. He did give some interesting info on them. You have to wire them together yourself. Klein's advertise them as 8ohm, but I have seen the same one on ebay being described as 4ohm. Good to know how and where you mounted these parts, double sided tape, I assume?

[I've been using the HTC One M8 speakers exclusively in all my own installs and install two wired in parallel to attain the 4 ohm load Loksound decoders work most efficiently at. I love them.
/QUOTE]

Do you do them with seperate enclosures, or have you tried them in the one enclosure? Isobaric I think it's called?
 

Mark R.

Custom Painter
#14
The 73400 decoder is the exact same, only it's "blank" and you have to load your own file. The 50327 is a decent speaker. Each speaker is 8 ohms - just wire the two of them in parallel for a 4 ohm load, which Loksound prefers. The key is to seal the speakers air tight to the enclosure, even where the speaker wires come out. ANY tiny opening will diminish the sound capability of the speakers.

I use the enclosures the HTC One M8 speakers come in. They are designed for maximum performance from that enclosure, so why mess with what the professionals have designed ! So far, I've been able to fit two of them in every engine right down to my low nose RS11s. This is what they look like in the enclosure ....
speaker.jpg

Where is this Loksound download file for the Kato 20 cylinder on their site ? Looked myself and can't find it. (?)

Mark.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#15
I have about 5 of those (I think) of those speakers, minus the one I pulled apart. I found getting the tough insulation off the traces in order to solder wires on to was very difficult to achieve and keep them seperated. I did do one, but attaching it to a decoder in one of my locos produced a poor response. As you are obviously getting good results, something I did must have gone wrong. Not surprising, my old fingers are not what they were and my soldering is not what it was either.

Here's the link to Kato's pages for all their Loksound equipped locos. The SD80MAC is on page 2 and the 10th one down. Buttons for download is black, marked HO
http://www.esu.eu/en/downloads/sounds/loksound-select/loksound-select-usa/
 

Mark R.

Custom Painter
#16
That's ESU's download page .... you indicated your friend could download the file from Kato's page .... typo ?

Even so, your link is an outdated one that goes to their old page. It only has 3 pages with 51 files. The current link is this which has 10 pages and 66 files each with a full description and sound sample. It also has all the revised files that have the Full Throttle feature ....

http://projects.esu.eu/projectoverviews/2

The SD80 MAC file that you linked to is old (2015) and sounds terrible compared to the newer files. Listen to the sound sample - there isn't even any transition sound on those old files. I'm afraid you would be disappointed with that file. Only use files that have the Full Throttle (FT) feature. They are the latest revisions of the file.

Mark.
 

Mark R.

Custom Painter
#17
I have about 5 of those (I think) of those speakers, minus the one I pulled apart. I found getting the tough insulation off the traces in order to solder wires on to was very difficult to achieve and keep them seperated. I did do one, but attaching it to a decoder in one of my locos produced a poor response. As you are obviously getting good results, something I did must have gone wrong. Not surprising, my old fingers are not what they were and my soldering is not what it was either.

Here's the link to Kato's pages for all their Loksound equipped locos. The SD80MAC is on page 2 and the 10th one down. Buttons for download is black, marked HO
http://www.esu.eu/en/downloads/sounds/loksound-select/loksound-select-usa/
I cut that thin circuit trace off even with the edge of the case. Flipped it over and used a sharp X-Acto blade to scrape off the green coating. Must get down to shiney copper. Tin both the pads and the wires. Lay the wire over the pad and touch it with your iron and they will meld right together. My fingers are still good, but my eyes aren't .... glasses AND an opti-visor are a must for me when working on tiny stuff any more.

Not sure why your results were disappointing. Matt from ESU bought some of these speakers once I showed him mine, and he thought they sounded better than anything they currently carry !

Mark.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#18
You're right, it is ESU's page. It's a while ago I went looking for those files and couldn't find them on Kato's site. Forgot where I found them, so bookmarked it and then forgot whose page it was. Convoluted eh! Thanks for the updated link. My friend didn't tell me where he got the file from, just that he could change it. He mentioned the Full Throttle update the other day and said he'd done some of his, so I presume it was from that ESU page.

When I bought the HTC One M8 speakers W/enclosures, I got 6 from a local seller, whose ad said they were original equipment, I questioned and he confirmed they were (paid about $5 each for them), I also bought from another international seller the same type which also claimed original replacement (not questioned). As far as the actual speakers are concerned, they look identical to the one you've shown, for about $2+ each (bought 10), as do the casings. After doing that test using the $5 one, I bought some without the enclosure. The listing showed the same illustration of the speaker face as the others.

What I noticed with the first 2 lots was a difference in the appearance of the traces. Identical shape, traces and ends, except the $5 ones had more height i.e. they are cranked up, which would, I imagine exert more pressure against whatever it is in the phone they contact. The cheaper ones lay virtually flat on the casing. I found what I take to be serial numbers on the back of the casing near the speaker (could only read with a magnifying glass), interestingly the $5 ones had individual numbers, from the same letter prefixes, whereas the $2 all had similar series letter/numbers, but all totally identical to one another.

The non enclosed speakers, after waiting eventually 6 weeks or so and contacting the seller a couple of times. I got a refund for non delivery, on the understanding I would reverse refund if they did turn up. They did so about 3 weeks later. Trouble is they weren't the same appearance as the others. All came in seperate plastic bags and in individual little plastic containers within. Obviously cut from a strip of these little containers The front face looks just like the back i.e. a flat metal piece. Has a piece of blue plastic stuck on with a tab to remove it as a seal. I would have sent them back, but as they were all only $20 free shipping, what's the point? They might be OK, won't know till I get a chance to test one, but that's not a priority. Maybe the plastic front on the others is only a cover, but it just proves, ebay pictures are no guarantee.

What I did with the traces on the one I tried, I scraped the insulation coating off in places on each, staggered, so as to avoid the possibility of cross soldering (hopefully), pre-tinned, then after soldering the wires to each, cut down the middle to seperate them further and clipped off the excess. What I should have done, was slip some heat shrink over each joint. I've still got it with the wires attached, so I'll do that and try again.
 

Mark R.

Custom Painter
#20
There are two speakers in the HTC One M8 phone. The one in the black plastic enclosure and the single one with no enclosure. The one with the enclosure is used for playback on the phone and the single speaker is used for the ringer. While both of the actual speakers appear to be the same, the one in the enclosure was obviously designed for best reproduction of that speaker. Anything we design, would probably not live up to the same reproductive specs.

Mark.
 



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