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A big THANK YOU to everyone that stopped by and visited us at the 2019 Railway Hobby Show! We had a really wonderful time!
TCS hosted a well-attended and well-received clinic on Friday afternoon, detailing the upcoming WiFi Command System, and Universal WiFi Throttle.
Visitors had a great time using our new command system and throttles on the LCC layout at our booth. We had a ton of great questions and interested users. Development continues, so keep your ears open for a release date in the next few months!
Our brand new smaller Keep-Alive® devices are making their way through production as of this recap, and will be available very soon!
See a brief recap of some show stuff below:
Thanks again to all who attended, Mike and Barry for the opportunity to present a clinic, and the folks at the Railway Hobby Show who made it all happen. We'll see you next year!
You haven’t heard WOWSound until you’ve heard it through our 28mm 4W High Bass WOWSpeaker! This speaker can deliver an unprecedented 4 watts of power, and showcases a mighty bass reflex that packs quite the sonic punch. Your layout will rumble and vibrate underneath your locos in prototypical fashion, and you might find yourself concerned that there's an actual locomotive roaming around somewhere in your house!
Bigger doesn’t always mean better, but in this case… well, it does. Measuring in at 13.5mm (0.53") thick (includes rubberized mounting gasket) this speaker is considerably taller than it’s round cousin, and that extra length is where the magic happens. This speaker is still 28mm (1.1") in diameter - exactly like our 28mm round speakers - and will still fit within a 28mm speaker footprint. The larger speaker driver will easily handle any and all roaring, grumbling, wheezing, and horn blasting you can throw at it. The specially-designed aluminum cone allows for a greater bass response that produces deeper and richer sounds, closer to the prototype than ever!
The speaker comes with an adhesive mounting gasket, which allows for unrestricted movement of the cone after installation. The speaker should be installed with the gasket partially (not entirely) compressed. This gasket prevents provides a space in front of the speaker which allows the cone to fully deflect; this prevents distortion or other physical damage to the speaker cone, and ensures longer life within your model compared to similar speakers without a gasket which will make contact with whatever they are mounted against.
Here are some of the specs, for the audiophiles and otherwise sonically-inclined among us:
|Power Rating: 3W (Typical) 4W (Peak)||DC Impedance: 4 Ω ± 15%, at 1,000 Hz., 1.0 V|
|Resonant Frequency: 250 ±20% Hz/1V||Operating Temperature: -20º C to + 60º C|
|Effective Frequency Band: 250 Hz. to 20 kHz.||Sound Pressure Level: 84 ± 3.0 dB (A), at 0.63 V, 0.1 m, Average 500,1,000, 2,000, 4,000 (Hz ), at 25°C|
There's never been a better time to invest in your model railroad sound infrastructure - everyone is getting serious about sound quality across the hobby. With the response we've already received, these speakers very well might become the new standard companion for sound decoders. Partner the highest-quality sound in the industry with speakers that can do it justice! Turn heads and tickle ears at the club this holiday season when you order your High Bass speakers today!
Shop Now: tcsdcc.com/1694
One of the greatest joys we get to experience here at TCS is heading out on recording trips. Many of us are avid steam enthusiasts, and if we're being honest - we all just really like trains. In order to get all those "WOWSounds" onto our decoders, we've got to track their respective locomotives down first and carefully record every sound they make. There are A TON of different locomotives out there in the world, so this adventure never really stops. We're always on the hunt!
One great example of a highly successful trip was our western expedition to California back in late 2014. Originally, we were working together with Korea Brass to develop a sound profile for the GE U25B locomotive. We learned that the Orange Empire RR Museum in California possessed the only operable U25 anywhere in the country. Naturally, we didn’t waste any time and scheduled a trip out west.
We started this trip at Orange Empire and recorded four diesel locomotives there, including the U25B. It was a bit toasty that day...
"I will never forget recording at the Orange Empire Railway Museum. It was 105 degrees in the shade that day! Naturally, we headed out to the rail yard area anyway. There was no shade in sight. I have never ever sweated so much in all my life - no exaggeration! Two of us drank through an entire case of water bottles in less than five hours." - John Forsythe, TCS Owner
We figured it would be economical to get as many recordings as we could when we headed out to the other side of the country, so we contacted many additional railroads including Knotts Berry Farm, Niles Canyon Railroad, Railtown 1897, and the Western Pacific RR Museum in Portola, CA.
As the trip around California progressed, we obtained other recordings from each of the other railroads. We discovered a ton of rare and interesting motive power and worked with some great folks to get them mic’d up and operating. We even got to ride around on/in these locomotives as we recorded them.
John Forsythe specifically recounts his experience at the Western Pacific RR Museum:
“The museum was quite impressive in its own right. The amount of equipment they have on display there rivals any top-quality museum. Their shop facility is equally impressive. We saw that work on a steam engine restoration that might even be finished by now. At this museum, they offer a diesel operation experience that’s open to anyone. You can actually drive a diesel locomotive around the yard under your own control. You can’t do that anywhere else that I know of - that’s very cool! The volunteers there are as good as they come and are very dedicated to the success of the museum.
We didn’t limit our trip to railroads though. TCS friend Tim Dickinson invited us out to the middle of his residential development. He grabbed a Nathan P3 air horn from his garage, tied into a compressor, set up in the middle of the street and shook the entire neighborhood out of their daily routine. Seriously, this was as wild of an experience as you could imagine. After calming down the alarmed neighbors and explaining to them what we were up to, we got some great air horn recordings!
All in all, we captured a total of 15 locomotives during this trip (12 diesel, 3 steam) and recorded many additional bells and horns along the way. Some of these sounds have made it onto our currently released sound sets, and more will be included on future releases.
The folks at TCS are always busy tracking down new opportunities for recording so that we can deliver 16-bit CD-quality sound for your models - no matter what you’re running. We’re always open to suggestions and we want to hear from you.
How can you help TCS get our next locomotive recorded?
See more pictures from this adventure below:
Many thanks again to our friends at these excellent railways and attractions that volunteered their time and allowed us to record locomotives.
Jack from Bachmann Trains stopped by a few weeks ago to talk about the ACS-64. We discuss a lot of cool features included in the model, like the specific lighting and sound features. This video also features a demonstration of our powerful Keep-Alive® technology and Audio Assist® programming for adjustments on the fly.
There's even a special preview of an upcoming Bachmann model! (*cough* STREAMLINED K4 *cough*)
Click the "Learn" tab on our website header for more information on WOWSound, Keep-Alive®, and Audio Assist®. Click here to find behind-the-scenes information on the ACS-64 project.
You can also visit Bachmann Trains at www.bachmanntrains.com for more information on current and upcoming models.
Nothing beats standing trackside while a train is flying past. There's the gust of wind, the sight of cars flying by that your eyes can barely keep up with, and the SOUND. The unmistakable sound of wheels on rails, couplers groaning, engines roaring, and the wind whipping by.
Replicating that feeling is difficult in model railroading, but TCS is proud to introduce our best attempt: the all-new Whoosh feature. We spent hours recording these glorious run-bys, and are now including them on our WOWSound decoders in 16-bit CD quality.
TCS is leading the pack with this addition to the sound decoder landscape, first to engineer and debut this functionality on our WOWSound decoder. The first decoder to hit the market with Whoosh was the Bachmann ACS-64. On this model, a press of button 4 produces one of several Whoosh sounds that emulate the passing of a speeding passenger train from a trackside vantage point. Be it level crossings, mountain passes, or wherever else your trains sound their loudest, you can Whoosh right on through.
There are several ways to enjoy Whoosh depending on your running preferences.
Manual. Use Button 4 to operate one randomly-timed Whoosh sequence at any time.
Random. Map Whoosh into a "random sound" slot (R1-R4) with Audio Assist® to hear your model whooshing through different parts of your layout, all without any additional effort from the user.
Tip: Reducing the volume of the traction motor can make the Whoosh sound more prevalent when it's activated. Some users have found this to be useful.
Watch the video below to see Whoosh in action:
If you feel like spreading the word and making your own video demonstrating the TCS WHOOSH, you might just get a message from TCS with a fun prize or discount code.
A quick note on semantics: It turns out that there's not only one way to spell "Whoosh." In product literature, we spell it "whoosh" with two "o"s. In the graphic on this page, it has three! We don't let rules and semantics get in the way when we're spelling sounds. Here are some other common spellings of "whoosh" along with some alternative definitions: