Author Topic: 8x12mm speaker comparison  (Read 1104 times)

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jdcolombo

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8x12mm speaker comparison
« on: September 29, 2016, 11:27:36 PM »
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Hi folks.

I ordered a couple of the Soperton 8x12mm cell-phone type speakers from Digikey, and did a comparison between it, an older Star Micronics 8x12mm, and the 8x12mm "sugar cube" available from Streamlined Backshops.   The SBS speaker used the new deeper enclosure from Streamlined Backshops, and was mounted face down in the enclosure, as it is supposed to be in this application.  The Star Micronics and the Soperton speakers were in a custom enclosure I made from .030 styrene - just a plain sealed box.  In each case, the internal volume of the enclosure was about 550 cubic mm; each enclosure/speaker combo was about 6mm high overall.  The custom sealed box made the overall dimensions of the Soperton and Star Micronics speakers roughly 13.5mm long by 9.5mm wide.  Because the SBS speaker enclosure is made so that the "lip" of the front of the speaker faces down in the enclosure, no additional width or length is added by the enclosure and the overall dimensions of this one are 12x8mm.

The comparison was performed using an ESU LokSound Select Micro with the EMD 567 V-16 non-turbo sound file (#73436).   I used the factory defaults for volume levels for all three speakers; originally I thought that I would need to turn the volume down for the Soperton speaker, because its power handling specs are listed as being about half the power handling of the other two; but when I did the test, it turned out that the Soperton was just fine with the default volume settings on the ESU Loksound (e.g., master volume set at 180).   So even though the Soperton spec sheet lists its power-handling capacity as less than either of the other two speakers, in this application it was just fine with the same settings as the other two.

I think all three sounded excellent, and I can't really distinguish among them.  Any would be excellent for a typical N-scale narrow-hood diesel installation PROVIDED THAT you use the speaker in a sealed enclosure with sufficient internal volume (I think about 500 cubic mm is the minimum, but YMMV).

Here's the video of the comparison:


I'm impressed enough with the Soperton speaker that I'll be ordering a couple-dozen to have on hand (they are available from DigiKey - see my prior post for a link).  But if you want a solution that comes with a pre-made enclosure, the Streamlined Backshops speaker is also excellent.  The Star Micronics is no longer available - I still have some of these from a purchase a couple of years ago, but the two available speakers (the SBS and Soperton) are just as good IMHO.

John C.

Late Realization: the name of the speaker manufacturer is "Soberton" with a "b" NOT "Soperton" with a "P".  Sorry about that!
« Last Edit: October 02, 2016, 10:49:06 PM by jdcolombo »

wmcbride

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2016, 11:35:12 PM »
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Excellent, path-breaking work as usual, John!

I couldn't discern much difference among them so Iwas glad to read that you couldn't either!  :D
Bill McBride

wazzou

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2016, 11:47:47 PM »
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Does the newer Soperton sound a little more "tinny" on the engine rev or is that only my imagination?
Bryan

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jdcolombo

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2016, 10:59:35 AM »
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Does the newer Soperton sound a little more "tinny" on the engine rev or is that only my imagination?

Well, not to my ears, but I'm 60 years old and my treble hearing extension is . . . not what it used to be.  The advantage of the Soperton (other than the fact that you can actually buy it!) is that the sides are completely flat - there are no plastic "keying" protrusions that need to be cut off before using it in a sealed enclosure.  It only took me about 5 minutes to build an enclosure around the speaker using some .030 x .250 styrene strip for the sides and some .030 sheet for the bottom.   

John C.

skytop35

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2016, 01:17:08 PM »
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Thanks John. Good to know ! My 60 year old ears thank you as well !
Bill Denton

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BobRunty

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2016, 02:47:58 PM »
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Nicely done John. Thanks for keeping us informed on available speakers, always good to have more than one option. Now if ESU would just get that narrower Loksound Micro out I could get back to more installs.

Bob

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2016, 07:59:10 PM »
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HI John,

Can you show a picture of the soldering pads on this new speaker?

Cajonpassfan

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2016, 12:02:20 AM »
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Thank you John for doing the research for the rest of us. It's nice to have this kind of sound in such small packages. Wow! I need to start ripping out some of my "big" speakers from 15 years ago (and replacing the original Soundtraxx decoders while I'm at it) :|
Otto K.

jdcolombo

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2016, 11:03:26 AM »
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HI John,

Can you show a picture of the soldering pads on this new speaker?

Yep:

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peteski

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2016, 11:29:41 AM »
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Interesting - real solder pads instead of springy contacts. First time I see that on this type of a speaker.
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central.vermont

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2016, 12:19:07 PM »
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Before I go and order some for myself I just want to be sure that this is the speaker we are discussing.

Thanks, Jon


http://www.digikey.com/product-detail/en/soberton-inc/SP-1208/433-1130-ND/6099104

jdcolombo

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2016, 12:28:26 PM »
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Before I go and order some for myself I just want to be sure that this is the speaker we are discussing.

Thanks, Jon


http://www.digikey.com/product-detail/en/soberton-inc/SP-1208/433-1130-ND/6099104

Yep - that's it.

John C.

Santa Fe Guy

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Re: 8x12mm speaker comparison
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2016, 10:50:21 PM »
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Hearing that sound almost makes me want to go purchase some locos now that I sold the lot.
Great work as usual John and thanks for the way you contribute such info for our hobby.
Rod.
Santafesd40.blogspot.com