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DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint
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DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by Wood4sheep2q on Sun Mar 03, 2019 11:18 pm

I bought this sound board and have it functioning just fine except the sound is really soft. I was hoping for a little more presence. I first bought 2 of your 3watt 8ohm and then 2 1 watt 8ohm. The sound is really not that loud. I tried using the volume pins but quickly found that default was at the highest volume anyway.

I am not that electrical knowledgeable. Is it the ohm. Do I need to buy those 4ohm pair you have?
Or do I have to go the non-amped board and get one of your amps and power that? Thanks for any help.
I built this table and have a set of rocker switches that run to the soundboard trigger pins.
I laser cut a speaker grill and have just enough room to put them in above the grill with the board etc.
just want to hear clearly at the desk.
Or maybe I have to run a wire to an external powered speaker to get what I need.
Thanks for any help.
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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by adafruit_support_carter on Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:32 pm

If the sound at max volume isn't loud enough, then getting a more powerful amplifier would be the better option over trying to use 4 ohm speakers.

You say you just want to hear clearly at the desk. I would think / hope the amp would be enough for that. But maybe the grill + the underside location is making the sound far enough away that it's too quiet for you? Not sure. But if you really want louder, then you want a more powerful amp. If you do that, be sure to switch to using the line level outputs and *not* the amplified outputs that go to the speakers. That is - don't connect the output of the 2W amp to the input of another amp.

Also, nice looking table. Very Star Treky.

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by Wood4sheep2q on Wed Mar 06, 2019 8:35 am

Thanks for the reply. It is soft sounding even when sitting on my workbench. Sigh! So... which amplifier of yours would you recommend for this?

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by adafruit_support_carter on Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:10 pm

You can check out the options here:
https://www.adafruit.com/category/526

Which one to recommend is a little tough though. It's hard to estimate how much power you need to get to the loudness you want. The Audio FX board is 2W, so anecdotally, you know you need more than that.

But is 3W enough:
https://www.adafruit.com/product/3006 (mono)
Or 3.7W:
https://www.adafruit.com/product/987
20W should be more than enough, but might even be overkill:
https://www.adafruit.com/product/1752

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by Wood4sheep2q on Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:35 pm

so....the 3.7 watt amplifier worked great. Sound is just how I wanted it now:

https://youtu.be/QyeuZlZRS9U

https://youtu.be/1eNZRyRyyBY

and favorite...
https://youtu.be/AVO8IohzJjc

the only last issue I am having is that I was hoping that I could just leave it plugged in for the most part and be ready to play sounds. After a day or so.... it has to be unplugged and plug back in to play sounds. The green led will be on but no triggering until turn off turn on. any thoughts deeply appreciated....

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by adafruit_support_carter on Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:32 pm

Nice! That's a really cool build. Does the monitor do anything?

Not sure what could be causing the lock up. Good that it is at least recoverable. How is the whole thing powered?

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by Wood4sheep2q on Tue Apr 16, 2019 4:19 pm

powered by USB cord thru the desk to a usb wall plug. The amp is powered off the power outs from the soundboard.



The monitor does not do anything at this time. It is made just like the original with a transparency that I put in and lit up. I have a close friend that built the same one and put in a monitor and a raspberry pi and has on her desk with Bluetooth to her keyboard and mouse. Its Rad!

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by AnneBarela on Tue Apr 16, 2019 5:23 pm

Do you have a tutorial or instructions or do you plan to sell these? I'd like some more info. Even finding good rocker buttons would be nice.

There will be an Adafruit blog post Wednesday morning based on your info - if you have anything you'd like posted, please put it in the forum here and I'll add it to the article.

Super great work!

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by Wood4sheep2q on Tue Apr 16, 2019 11:01 pm

MikeBarela wrote:Do you have a tutorial or instructions or do you plan to sell these? I'd like some more info. Even finding good rocker buttons would be nice.

There will be an Adafruit blog post Wednesday morning based on your info - if you have anything you'd like posted, please put it in the forum here and I'll add it to the article.

Super great work!


Thanks Mike. Wow Blog post! Thats really cool. Okay here is a lot of info. Use what you want :-)

Lots of time into designing the desk and then the work to install switches and make great sound. The desk is done in collaboration with a local cabinet maker at his shop and Yes I am selling these desks. It would be hard to pass on the info the desk itself as it is high end furniture quality. We work together in a fairly large and well equipped workshop to produce the desk. The desk itself is made in three parts so it can ship and the main body is built in what is called a torsion box which has hollow passages that allow for wiring to pass through the desk. It also allowed me to use the air space within the desk as a form of speaker box to augment the sound quality. Here is the desk under construction; Image You can see the passage areas. This also makes the desk stable and it will not warp.
The top is formica and the bus for the switches was cut in before applying the formica top. The area for the speaker grill was cut in ahead of finishing and painting.
Here you can see the speaker grill opening and the usb power cord dangling through ready to hook up to the sound system.
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I spent a lot of time on sound development and the grill itself went through a number of iterations until I stumbled upon this design that separated the air moved by the speaker from the body of the desk in order to facilitate the desk as speaker box. I used a glowforge to cut the grills.

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After some testing I went with the adafruit 2341 sound board with 16 mb of storage. I tried .WAV and .OGG but settled on .OGG as they took up less space and I needed the space for what I wanted to do. This photo shows the prototype sound board and 8ohm speakers. I switched to the 2341 and added the 987 3.7 watt amplifier and 4ohm speakers. This set up got the rich sound I was looking for.
Here is the link for pinout info etc on the soundboard.
https://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-audio-fx-sound-board/pinouts
and simular tech info on the amplifier
https://learn.adafruit.com/stereo-3-7w-class-d-audio-amplifier?view=all

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I loaded a sound for each rocker and set up to 8 triggers on the board.

With this board you have 5 ways of activating sounds:

Basic Trigger - name the file Tnn.WAV or Tnn.OGG to have the audio file play when the matching trigger pin nn is connected to ground momentarily
Hold Looping Trigger - name the file TnnHOLDL.WAV or .OGG to have the audio play only when the trigger pin is held low, it will loop until the pin is released
Latching Loop Trigger - name the file TnnLATCH.WAV or .OGG to have the audio start playing when the button is pressed momentarily, and repeats until the button is pressed again
Play Next Trigger - have up to 10 files play one after the other by naming them TnnNEXT0.WAV thru TnnNEXT9.OGG. Will start with #0 and each one on every momentary button press until it gets through all of them, then go back to #0
Play Random Trigger - just like the Play Next trigger, but will play up to 10 files in random order (TnnRAND0.OGG thru TnnRAND9.OGG) every time the button is pressed momentarily

Most rockers are latching so one trick is to name the file as a NEXT file and then it triggers like normal but you have to press the rocker back to be able to get the next sound. If your rockers are momentary then its easier as the signal will send and trigger and let go.

I decided to for now just put one sound on each rocker. As the usb cord is hanging out the desk the board can be accessed easily for changing sounds or stacking them etc.

Vintage rockers are hard to come by and even harder to identify the right ones. Proper rockers do have the hardware tucked under the switch so they can be put next to each other.

Here are two photos of proper rockers with the right ridges, sizing and mounting hardware.
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I altered the mounting on these to fit the bus for the desk.
Finding 60 year old switches is difficult. I have a line on a few sources and you should drop me a line at amplector@gmail.com if you are wanting some I can help.
The painting colors are very very carefully matched with Museum quality references thanks to info from some friends of mine that have access to original switches and then weeks of tedious work on my part to find spray paints that closely matched original colors. I am glad to pass that info on if needed as well by email.
Here are 8 vintage rockers primed and painted to spec. and then set up to wire to the soundboard. I used a cat 6 connector and wire as it had just the 8 wires needed for the 8 triggers I am using and then a separate connector for ground.

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8 vintage rockers being installed
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Here is the soundboard and grill powered up and connected to the rockers being tested before screwing the grill in.
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As the final step I laser cut a custom black acrylic bezel to finish out the rockers properly on the top.
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you have youtube to some of the sounds played already. Here are some of the other ones :-)
https://youtu.be/qKGpN9gTAXc
https://youtu.be/u-dWkmjMoqQ
https://youtu.be/D3hx7J12Q8I

Let me know if you want to know anything else. Lots of work and time in this so thanks for being into it too.

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by adafruit_support_carter on Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:59 pm

Outstanding!

I'm still not sure what is causing the occasional lockup of the Sound FX board. Your general build quality is excellent. It sounds like this is something you plan to make more of? If so, it might help to just make a second Sound FX + Amp assembly and see if it also exhibits the same issue.

powered by USB cord thru the desk to a usb wall plug

What is the current rating of the wall plug? One simple thing might be to try different power supplies and USB cables to see if that helps.

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by AnneBarela on Wed Apr 17, 2019 7:49 pm

If it does turn out to be power you can consider one of the Adafruit power supplies with a USB micro-B plug out or the "tablet rated" USB bricks

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by Wood4sheep2q on Wed Apr 24, 2019 10:45 am

adafruit_support_carter wrote:Outstanding!

I'm still not sure what is causing the occasional lockup of the Sound FX board. Your general build quality is excellent. It sounds like this is something you plan to make more of? If so, it might help to just make a second Sound FX + Amp assembly and see if it also exhibits the same issue.

powered by USB cord thru the desk to a usb wall plug

What is the current rating of the wall plug? One simple thing might be to try different power supplies and USB cables to see if that helps.



I will make a second but also I may be able to simplify the circuit so trying that too. My original post question related to using the soundboard with built in amp having too soft sound. I had missed that you have the gain locked down to 6 db and that there is a solder jump to remove to improve gain. I am going to try that on one of those this weekend and see if that cures the sound issue and also lowers the complexity of the circuit.
I will also pursue the other way too to try to make sure I am not doing something wrong I need to fix or to figure out if it is a power supply issue..
here are the jumper spot and after removing soldier to post in case someone else has that issue and misses the blurb about it in the tech data provided on the web page.
Image
Image
There is one other type jumper that you scratch out the connection

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Re: DAFRUIT AUDIO FX SOUND BOARD + 2X2W AMP sound is faint

by Ixchel on Thu Jun 27, 2019 7:54 pm

Did removing the jumper help with the sound volume? I am trying to use one of these for a costume, and I am likely to encounter the same issue.

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