Author Topic: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?  (Read 1364 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

reinhardtjh

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2694
  • Respect: +265
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2022, 11:45:18 PM »
0
I'm not sure if there are any Canadien dealers for ZIMO or ESU.

At one time the only North American distributor for Zimo was in Canada - Art Luescher (I think)  He passed the baton on to someone else a couple years ago but I don't remember if they were in the US or Canada.
John H. Reinhardt
PRRT&HS #8909
C&O HS #11530
N-Trak #7566

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 28250
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +3204
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #16 on: January 07, 2022, 12:33:34 AM »
0
Yes, Art still participates in the ZIMO group ( https://groups.io/g/ZIMO-DCC ). I believe he passed the distributorship to https://www.trainli.com/ in Reno, NV, USA.
. . . 42 . . .

Dwight in Toronto

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 86
  • Respect: +14
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #17 on: January 07, 2022, 05:18:19 PM »
0
Streamlined Backshop quickly responded to my email enquiry, and clarified that they do indeed have the Zimo sound decoder for the GS4 (I guess I was looking at the wrong thing as being ‘sold out’). 

He said that there was no GS4 sound file per se, but he attached a link to all the available files.  I studied the American steam options, but hoo boy, I replied that I could really use some guidance/recommendation on what might be the most suitable for the GS4. 

Also, I don’t have the capability to download sound files to decoders, but presumably Streamlined Backshop must occasionally pre-load sounds for purchasers, correct?  I’ve never purchased/installed a sound decoder up ‘til now … just the non-sound predecessors.  Waiting to hear back from the shop, but looking forward to getting on with this little project.

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 28250
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +3204
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #18 on: January 07, 2022, 07:14:22 PM »
0
Dwight,
Yes, Streamlined backstop does upload the sound files for customers.  It is all done during the online ordering phase.

While I do like ZIMO decoders, as I mentioned, their American steam loco sound selection is fairly limited.  If I were you, I would wait a bit longer, until the ESU decoder is back in stock as ESU has the appropriate sound file available.

I also want to mention that if you want to jump into ownership of the advanced sound decoders (which use downloadable sound files), things will be a bit more complicated than when using the simpler sound decoders which come with a small range of permanently preloaded sound selections.
. . . 42 . . .

Dwight in Toronto

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 86
  • Respect: +14
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #19 on: January 07, 2022, 09:41:22 PM »
0
Thanks, Peteski, for continuing to check in on this thread, and for guiding me towards the less twisty, convoluted path … much appreciated.  I’ll await availability of the ESU version of the decoder.

As an aside - I do have DecoderPro - I realize that I can’t load sound files with it, but I assume it can access Zimo decoders much like any other, no?  Just curious.

reinhardtjh

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 2694
  • Respect: +265
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #20 on: January 07, 2022, 11:00:36 PM »
0
As an aside - I do have DecoderPro - I realize that I can’t load sound files with it, but I assume it can access Zimo decoders much like any other, no?  Just curious.

That's correct.  The configuration portion - the CV setting JMRI/DecoderPro can do just like any other decoder.
John H. Reinhardt
PRRT&HS #8909
C&O HS #11530
N-Trak #7566

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 28250
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +3204
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2022, 01:05:08 AM »
0
That's correct.  The configuration portion - the CV setting JMRI/DecoderPro can do just like any other decoder.

The list of CVs for ZIMO sound decoders is available at http://www.zimo.at/web2010/documents/cvliste_5.2021_EN.pdf

I checked the SBS website and you weren't mistaken:  the recently released 16-bit sound decoder MS560 is out of stock, but the previous 8-bit version, MX605 is in stock.  To be honest I really don't think that with the tiny speakers we use in N scale, 16 bit will sound all that different than the 8-bit version.

The full decoder manuals are available too.
For the MX (8-bit decoders): http://www.zimo.at/web2010/documents/MX-small-decoders_EN.pdf
And for the new MS (16-bit decoders): http://www.zimo.at/web2010/documents/MS-Sound-Decoders_EN.pdf

For some reason the MX manual does not include the MX605, but between the MS and MX manual, you should be able to get all the info you need.  Plus the decoder packaging includes a paper insert with all the basic info about the decoder.
. . . 42 . . .

Dwight in Toronto

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 86
  • Respect: +14
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #22 on: January 08, 2022, 10:01:19 AM »
0
Thanks so much for the links to the Zimo info … there’s a lot of poop there!
You suggested that I wait or search for the ESU version, for which there is a GS4 sound file, and I think I can gather up the patience for that! 

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 28250
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +3204
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #23 on: January 08, 2022, 11:30:45 AM »
0
Thanks so much for the links to the Zimo info … there’s a lot of poop there!
You suggested that I wait or search for the ESU version, for which there is a GS4 sound file, and I think I can gather up the patience for that!

You won't regret it!  ESU sound decoders are even more complex that ZIMO, but that is at the sound file programming level (when you use the LokProgrammer to actually create or customize sound files), but at an end-user level (as in accessing just CV registers) they are about the same as any sound decoder.  Using JMRI DecoderPro is helpful (again, that goes for any sound decoder due to the extensive number of CVs in them compared to non-sound decoders).
. . . 42 . . .

Dwight in Toronto

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 86
  • Respect: +14
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #24 on: February 24, 2022, 09:16:03 PM »
0
A couple of interesting acquisitions for me today.

I googled that Loksound 5 Micro DCC Kato Japan (58731) decoder yesterday, and was surprised to see a link to a model railroad vendor in the Toronto area that I had never heard of before, with a street address (there are very few brick-&-mortar hobby stores these days!). Their web site said they had 3 in stock. Sent an email query …. they confirmed “yes, 3 in stock”.

Took my 4 year old grandson for a road trip far across to the west end of the city. The address was in a strip industrial mall, but no shop. Couldn’t find it. Was ready to leave, and noticed a stack of Walthers boxes in a dusty window of a hardwood flooring store. Long story short, bought the decoder for my Kato Morning Daylight GS-4 ($124 Cdn) from a tiny hole-in-the-wall “store” occupying a forgotten corner of a flooring and trim milling operation.

The decoder, of course, is ‘blank’ and the proprietor had neither the ability to load the GS-4 sound file nor a LokProgrammer in stock. So, it was off to one of the two remaining sizeable model railroad shops, where I bought their last LokProgrammer.

All of this, because I so much want to see/hear my Morning Daylight running with all the prototypical elegance that it so richly deserves.  I just finished adding my own flicker-free led lighting to all 12 coaches, so looking forward to the total sound experience.

Just have to swap the new decoder for the old one, and then figure out this whole LokProgrammer/computer/sound file downloading thing!  I’ll probably be nagging some of you guys for help.

One quick question - the 58731 specifies a 100 ohm résistance speaker.  Can I safely experiment with an old cell phone speaker?

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 28250
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +3204
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #25 on: February 24, 2022, 09:48:28 PM »
0
A 100 ohm speaker?!  Where exactly is that stated?  Some really old ESU decoders (like version 3 or older) used high impedance speakers, but they started using standard low impedance speakers in V4 and V5.

The 58731 is a very recent V5 decoder. Just to confirm, I went to https://www.esu.eu/en/products/loksound/loksound-5-micro-dcc-kato/  and the description there states : A Class-D audio output with up to 3W output power controls the speakers, which can have between 4 ohms and 32 ohms impedance.

Should be perfectly fine to use a standard 8 ohm speaker (just like in any other ESU V4 or V5 decoder.

It should fit into the GS4 loco (from any release), but installing it is one of those 3-handed jobs (keeping all the contacts aligned while trying to reassemble the tender is a bit tricky.  Not an optimal design.
. . . 42 . . .

Dwight in Toronto

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 86
  • Respect: +14
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #26 on: February 25, 2022, 01:19:59 PM »
0
Good day Peteski. Yes, you must be right, I checked the 58731 info sheet that was packed with the decoder, and it says speaker impedance 4 -16 ohms.  I saw 100 ohms somewhere, but I had been scouring dozens of online ESU topics looking for any and all insight. Does a salvaged cell phone speaker fit the bill?

Installation was a breeze - no trouble whatsoever with those loosely fitted power strips. Just did a quick programming track test - so far so good. Going to see what cell phone speakers I’ve got kicking around to play with.

peteski

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 28250
  • Gender: Male
  • Honorary Resident Curmudgeon
  • Respect: +3204
    • Coming (not so) soon...
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #27 on: February 25, 2022, 02:03:39 PM »
0
Good day Peteski. Yes, you must be right, I checked the 58731 info sheet that was packed with the decoder, and it says speaker impedance 4 -16 ohms.  I saw 100 ohms somewhere, but I had been scouring dozens of online ESU topics looking for any and all insight. Does a salvaged cell phone speaker fit the bill?

Installation was a breeze - no trouble whatsoever with those loosely fitted power strips. Just did a quick programming track test - so far so good. Going to see what cell phone speakers I’ve got kicking around to play with.

The speaker will likely work (assuming it is one of those rectangular "sugar cube" speakers).  But me being me, I want to verify its impedance.  However, it is highly unlikely that the speaker has impedance (resistance) under 4 ohms, and if it's higher than 16 ohms, it will not damage anything -- it will just not give as loud sound as the lower impedance counterparts.

Also remember installing it in an airtight enclosure.  Speaker by itself will sound *CRAPPY*.  There is plenty of room in the tender - make the enclosure as large as you can.  There is also likely room for a keep-alive circuit if you have a place on the decoder to hook it up.

I don't have one of those decoders yet, to be able to decipher it.  I'm waiting until Streamlined Backshop restocks them.
. . . 42 . . .

Dwight in Toronto

  • Crew
  • *
  • Posts: 86
  • Respect: +14
Re: Does the ESU 58731 Board Fit the Kato N GS-4 (Latest Run)?
« Reply #28 on: February 25, 2022, 07:16:08 PM »
0
Well, it was a pretty successful day on the workbench.

I still have huge trepidation when it comes to downloading/manipulating computer software. Between struggling to find where downloaded files have been sent, and windows popping up unexpectedly, and COM: ports and things not doing what the instructions say they should do, I just find it very intimidating and maddening.  However, I’m happy to say that the LokProgrammer software and hardware actually played really nicely with my desktop, and setup was all pleasingly painless.

In the bit of time I spent with the on-screen menus, format and descriptions (or lack there of), I have to say that the ESU software is not very intuitive, at least to me. I feel DecoderPro is superior in user friendliness, perhaps because using the NEC PowerCab brings some familiarity to things.

Regardless, I plugged away. I soldered a cell phone speaker to the brown wires on the 58731, and placed the loco on my portable programming board. The “Cab” feature confirmed that the loco was receiving signals. I then did a download of the GS-4 sound file from ESU’s website.  Had no idea where the sound file went, but decided to wing it … hit an icon for loading sounds to the decoder.  Some window said something was happening - took over half an hour.  Found another tab/window showing functions. Heard a bell! Heard a whistle! Heard hissing steam!

Moved the loco to my test oval … holy crap … it actually WORKS!  I can’t convey how thrilled I am; I’m still smiling, because this ‘hacker stuff’, as I call it, rarely works for me.  It’s also nice to not have to be a pain in the butt, asking endless noob questions to all the helpful folks on forums, who surely must have lots of their own projects on the go.

Anyway, I think it was pure beginner’s luck for me today, since I still don’t really know what all I was doing, LokProgrammer-wise.  I’ve been toying with the idea of scrapping the Kato light board and running function-controlled led’s for headlight, mars and reverse lamps (as per Kelley’s post), but I think I’m probably ok with the stock set-up, at least for the next little while.  Damn, it feels good when things work right!