(Topic ID: 307852)

Improving Sound Quality - The DIY Route

By davegauth

2 years ago


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  • Latest reply 19 hours ago by Pinash
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    There are 1,888 posts in this topic. You are on page 38 of 38.
    #1851 41 days ago

    So is the amp in the LE model Sterns different? Do the speakers in the LE crackle too? I ask because I wonder why there is this static and crackly sound happening just by upgrading to the same (similar equivalent) speakers that an LE has.

    Quoted from spidey:At Amazon it's currently $90.
    https://tinyurl.com/2s3apxt4
    This will allow you to add an amp for all 3 speakers. To convert the audio to line level, you'll want a Spike 2 adapter.
    https://www.thepinballwizard.net/pinsound/subwoofer-line-out-connector-for-stern-spike-2/
    Then get a cable to connect to the amp (link is for 4 feet but get the 8 foot)
    https://tinyurl.com/mstd7esu
    Now just get some speaker wire. I recommend banana jack adapter as well for easy disconnect.
    https://tinyurl.com/2ddt6xnw
    Finally, get some spade terminals for connecting to your Alpines, or solder the wires to the terminals.
    You can keep this system if you sell the game and want to move it to another game.

    #1852 41 days ago

    All Stern models have the same amp. If you crank the bass in an LE, it will crackle. When Bond came out, everyone complained about how the pop bumper sound effects were causing a crackling sound and wondered if it was a bad audio sample. It wasn't. Once you put an amp in it, you get clear bass and no distortion.
    I have an amp in my GZ so I can't tell you at what level the distortion hits. But that's why so many of us add amps to Stern games. It will also improve the sound of the backbox speakers.

    You can also keep reducing the low frequencies in your EQ (game audio settings, cabinet speaker) or the overall cabinet speaker volume until it sounds free of distortion. Then use the Pinsound adapter and run a cable to an external sub. Maybe start there and see if that's all you need. Subs are fun.

    There's a couple of other ways to hook up an external sub. If your sub has speaker inputs, then just run speaker wire from your cabinet sub out the bottom and directly to the sub. If the sub only has line level (RCA connectors), you can get a line level adapter for about $10 from amazon, and then an RCA cable.

    #1853 41 days ago

    thank you so much!! You have been very helpful, and very detailed. I will give this some thought as to whether I want to throw money at the sound of GZ. I cannot ‘crank it up’ where I live so I was just trying to upgrade the sound at low levels vs the standard premium speakers.

    Quoted from spidey:All Stern models have the same amp. If you crank the bass in an LE, it will crackle. When Bond came out, everyone complained about how the pop bumper sound effects were causing a crackling sound and wondered if it was a bad audio sample. It wasn't. Once you put an amp in it, you get clear bass and no distortion.
    I have an amp in my GZ so I can't tell you at what level the distortion hits. But that's why so many of us add amps to Stern games. It will also improve the sound of the backbox speakers.
    You can also keep reducing the low frequencies in your EQ (game audio settings, cabinet speaker) or the overall cabinet speaker volume until it sounds free of distortion. Then use the Pinsound adapter and run a cable to an external sub. Maybe start there and see if that's all you need. Subs are fun.
    There's a couple of other ways to hook up an external sub. If your sub has speaker inputs, then just run speaker wire from your cabinet sub out the bottom and directly to the sub. If the sub only has line level (RCA connectors), you can get a line level adapter for about $10 from amazon, and then an RCA cable.

    #1854 41 days ago
    Quoted from ataritoday:Spiral, you may need a spacer on the sub, if you don’t have one it could be hitting the cab.
    The other thing I noticed was the power supply fan when yup the game ends….so loud.

    Almost every NIB Stern I've had experienced this problem. The woofer hits and sounds crackly.

    #1855 41 days ago

    Any recommendations for upgrading Ghostbusters Premium?

    #1856 41 days ago
    Quoted from arcyallen:

    Almost every NIB Stern I've had experienced this problem. The woofer hits and sounds crackly.

    I just tried unbolting the SKAR woofer and still crackles. Put back in the cheesy standard 8” cabinet speaker and it has slight crackling noise too, that I apparently didn’t notice in the first few weeks of ownership.

    I will buy the pieces required for powering these new speakers independently from the Stern sound board.

    #1857 41 days ago
    Quoted from SpiralOut:

    I just tried unbolting the SKAR woofer and still crackles. Put back in the cheesy standard 8” cabinet speaker and it has slight crackling noise too, that I apparently didn’t notice in the first few weeks of ownership.
    I will buy the pieces required for powering these new speakers independently from the Stern sound board.

    You won’t be disappointed!!

    #1858 41 days ago
    Quoted from JorgesArcade:

    You won’t be disappointed!!

    Sweet!
    The power supply included with this little Fosi 2.1 amplifier, is it okay to plug it directly into the 110-20v service outlet in the back box?

    EDIT: I think I will cut the power cord on the Fosi PS brick and piggyback it to the game on/off switch like Mattyk did a few pages back.

    Do most mount this little amp on the cabinet floor to the left side of the coin box?

    #1859 41 days ago

    Does anyone here have a reference to a member who could print an 8” cabinet speaker stand-off/spacer?
    I tried using a couple different search terms but came up empty.

    #1860 41 days ago
    Quoted from SpiralOut:

    Does anyone here have a reference to a member who could print an 8” cabinet speaker stand-off/spacer?
    I tried using a couple different search terms but came up empty.

    I was looking at printing cabinet adapters. The size is pushing the limits of the build plate on my current 3D printer. I found it easier and faster to just make them using a pre-cut wood ring and drilling it with a drill press. Here is what I do. I have been using the Skar Audio IX-8 | 8" 300 Watt Max Power Car Subwoofer and had good results. (Alpine S-S50 for the backbox). Here is the simple process. A drill press makes it easier to get nice results:

    - Buy some rings. https://a.co/d/0GWgNv6

    - Remove the factory speaker and sit it on top of the ring. Try to get it centered on the ring and use a pen to mark the location of the holes onto the the ring.

    - Drill a ~3/16 inch hole all the way through the ring at each of the four spots marked above. Test fit it into the cabinet over the existing studs and open up any holes that don't line up.

    - Now use a bigger bit 1/2 or 5/8 (forstner bit) and drill down a little more than half way into the ring at the same hole locations.

    - Now set the new speaker on top of the ring and orient it so the holes are NOT lined up with the holes that you just drilled above. Mark the hole locations of the new speaker.

    - Drill a small pilot holes into the wood to allow attaching the new speaker using sheet metal screws and a washer.

    - Put the ring into the machine and mount using the original Stern speaker nuts.

    - Set the new speaker on top of the ring and attach using #10 sheet metal screws and washers. (Move the speaker wiring from the old speaker to the new speaker as required before installing)

    - Done
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    #1861 41 days ago
    Quoted from SpiralOut:

    Sweet!
    The power supply included with this little Fosi 2.1 amplifier, is it okay to plug it directly into the 110-20v service outlet in the back box?
    EDIT: I think I will cut the power cord on the Fosi PS brick and piggyback it to the game on/off switch like Mattyk did a few pages back.
    Do most mount this little amp on the cabinet floor to the left side of the coin box?

    I did piggyback . Next one I’ll do I might just go into wall smart outlet. This was I can use Bluetooth on the fosi pro without pin on.

    I mounted mine just to right behind coin door. I need to do a 3d print to mount on side

    #1862 40 days ago
    Quoted from John_I:

    I was looking at printing cabinet adapters. The size is pushing the limits of the build plate on my current 3D printer. I found it easier and faster to just make them using a pre-cut wood ring and drilling it with a drill press. Here is what I do. I have been using the Skar Audio IX-8 | 8" 300 Watt Max Power Car Subwoofer and had good results. (Alpine S-S50 for the backbox). Here is the simple process. A drill press makes it easier to get nice results:
    - Buy some rings. https://a.co/d/0GWgNv6
    - Remove the factory speaker and sit it on top of the ring. Try to get it centered on the ring and use a pen to mark the location of the holes onto the the ring.
    - Drill a ~3/16 inch hole all the way through the ring at each of the four spots marked above. Test fit it into the cabinet over the existing studs and open up any holes that don't line up.
    - Now use a bigger bit 1/2 or 5/8 (forstner bit) and drill down a little more than half way into the ring at the same hole locations.
    - Now set the new speaker on top of the ring and orient it so the holes are NOT lined up with the holes that you just drilled above. Mark the hole locations of the new speaker.
    - Drill a small pilot holes into the wood to allow attaching the new speaker using sheet metal screws and a washer.
    - Put the ring into the machine and mount using the original Stern speaker nuts.
    - Set the new speaker on top of the ring and attach using #10 sheet metal screws and washers. (Move the speaker wiring from the old speaker to the new speaker as required before installing)
    - Done
    [quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image][quoted image]

    Thank you for the tutorial John!

    Quoted from JorgesArcade:

    I did piggyback . Next one I’ll do I might just go into wall smart outlet. This was I can use Bluetooth on the fosi pro without pin on.
    I mounted mine just to right behind coin door. I need to do a 3d print to mount on side

    Thank you for the alternate suggestion too

    #1863 35 days ago

    Today I finalized the Fosi/Alpine/SKAR upgrade. It sounds better than the stock PE setup.

    Question, there is now an annoying hum coming from the back box speakers when the game sits idle. Can I eliminate that somehow? My power wire for the Fosi PS is coming off the game on/off switch via piggyback connectors.

    What audio settings in the service menu does everybody like to use? I don’t know really where to start.
    I have the amp volume on full, and some of the other knobs all the way to high as well. Didn’t experiment much, and will do some more with some guidance from others here who have paved the way.
    Thank you for all of the help so far. Very much appreciated.

    #1864 35 days ago

    If your amp volume is all the way up you are amplifying the sound that is presented to it. I would turn down the amp volume and use the machine volume to provide it something to work with. Providing the amp with some higher level of sound source to work with should reduce any hum. If you still have hum it could be a ground issue or wires too close to others causing them to act as an antenna and pick up interference.

    Search for post mentioning 4 ohm and 8 ohm settings. I set the equalizer to my liking and tuned it along the way over the course of a few days of playing and adjusting until I liked what I heard. I use a separate sub that has 15 inch driver and 15 inch passive radiator and the volume knob goes to 11 so my settings would not be any help to you. Old school Klipsch subwoofer fills in the bottom end.

    #1865 35 days ago

    Do was

    Quoted from SpiralOut:

    Question, there is now an annoying hum coming from the back box speakers when the game sits idle. Can I eliminate that somehow?

    Just run a wire from one of the amp case screws to the machine ground braid. Best to crimp a fork or ring terminal to attach to one of the case screws.

    #1866 35 days ago

    Thank you Gents. I will go to work with the information that you both have provided me.

    #1867 35 days ago

    Wow. Turning the machine volume up, and amplifier volume down some made all the difference in the world. Then I soldered up an alligator clip to a short pigtail with a ring terminal, which I attached to the upper left faceplate screw of the Fosi. Clipped it to the ground braid. These two tasks erased all of the hum. Thanks again!!

    Only one issue remaining, the pop of the speakers when powering down the machine. It’s the same kind of speaker pop that happens after a code update/install, but maybe a hair less violent. Is this just the nature of the beast, having the power of the amp piggybacked onto the game power switch?
    (Next time I power down the machine, if I remember to, I will reach inside and turn the amp off first and then power off the machine to see if this changes/eliminates the ‘pop’)

    Overall, impressed with the sound upgrade.

    #1868 34 days ago

    I get the pop on power down as well. I think it is mostly in the external subwoofer at least most noticeable there. I don't worry about it much but yes, turning off the amp first would eleminate it.

    #1869 33 days ago
    Quoted from Troy1:

    I get the pop on power down as well. I think it is mostly in the external subwoofer at least most noticeable there. I don't worry about it much but yes, turning off the amp first would eleminate it.

    Thank you for your feedback.
    Yesterday I tried turning off the amp first, then the on/off switch to the machine. Same loud pop noise. Didn’t seem to change in loudness at all. It is what it is I suppose.

    #1870 31 days ago

    Edit: Gone

    I've been upgrading to Alpine speakers and in some cases 5x7s. I have three perfectly good pairs of Kenwood speakers available for sale. They all have the Stern SPIKE 2 back box compatible connectors already soldered in place. These are the speakers Stern uses in their LE games. They're not as nice as the Alpine S-S50, but they're definitely an upgrade for the stock 4-in speakers. You would need 5.25" speaker adapters to put them in a premium or Pro. Adapters are available on my pinside store. If you plan to use speaker lights, I suggest buying the type 13 combo kit from speakerlightkits.com instead my speaker adapters.

    All three pairs for $60 plus $15 shipping. USA only. What you see is what you get, there's no grills or anything for installing in a car LOL.

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    #1871 31 days ago

    Tonight I found out how this upgraded speaker/amp combo really shines….as a stand alone sound system.

    Connected up my phone to the Fosi via Bluetooth and played several songs while the table sat idle, and all I can say is WOW. But this is coming from an old man who doesn’t have a stereo system at home. NOW I DO!

    #1872 31 days ago

    Can I get advice on how to get rid of hum on my sub when I turn my game off . Have subwoofer connection to fosi amp (no power when pin is off). Sub is auto on . I know I can turn off but want to eliminate that hassle. I assume some grounding issues

    #1873 31 days ago

    I removed my post with fix since it pertained to power ON

    #1874 31 days ago
    Quoted from JorgesArcade:

    Can I get advice on how to get rid of hum on my sub when I turn my game off . Have subwoofer connection to fosi amp (no power when pin is off). Sub is auto on . I know I can turn off but want to eliminate that hassle. I assume some grounding issues

    You could try lowering the volume on the sub and raising the sub volume on the Fosi.

    2 weeks later
    #1875 15 days ago
    Quoted from JorgesArcade:

    Can I get advice on how to get rid of hum on my sub when I turn my game off . Have subwoofer connection to fosi amp (no power when pin is off). Sub is auto on . I know I can turn off but want to eliminate that hassle. I assume some grounding issues

    I have my pins on groups of smart outlets, and the sub is plugged in with them. I have to do a similar thing with the pin I have with a fosi amp. If I flip the power switch off on the pin, speakers have a nasty hum

    #1876 15 days ago
    Quoted from Sorokyl:

    I have my pins on groups of smart outlets, and the sub is plugged in with them. I have to do a similar thing with the pin I have with a fosi amp. If I flip the power switch off on the pin, speakers have a nasty hum

    It is a fosi amp. Hum goes away once sub auto powers down but sometimes it must think it’s getting a signal and stay on. The fosi is piggyback to power switch so unless I turn pin on, no power to amp.

    Have some smart switch’s coming today so I’ll just use that

    #1877 9 days ago
    Quoted from Pinash:

    I am really digging how my fosi BT30 pro mount is coming out. A couple minor tweaks, then I’ll move into securing the power brick.
    [quoted image]

    Was this a file you released anywhere? This looks great!!!

    #1878 7 days ago

    3 pairs of Kenwood 5 1/4 speakers for sale. Also posted in Classified Marketplace. $60 + $17.00 USPS domestic shipping. These all come from new Stern LEs.
    IMG_0322 (resized).jpegIMG_0322 (resized).jpegIMG_0323 (resized).jpegIMG_0323 (resized).jpeg

    ——-SOLD——-

    #1879 6 days ago

    I love this thread and have read through the whole thing.
    Current thought process for an Iron Maiden Premium:
    Fosi Pro amplifier which I would wire to the switched hot side of the pin power switch so it comes on with the pin.
    Alpine S-S57 5x7's and potentially speaker lights.
    Kicker CS84 Comp C subwoofer.
    Waiting to hear back from davegauth on the speaker mounting plates for the 5x7's as well as his harness.

    I have zero knowledge on the 3D printing rabbit hole, where would be a good place to start to understand which type of 3D printer/material would be best for pinballing? I've not really had a need before but I can see the usefulness for having one for this hobby.

    thanks

    #1880 6 days ago

    Does anyone know or can tell me an alternative version to connect multiple pins to one sub instead of using the pinnovators product ?

    Thanks

    #1881 6 days ago
    Quoted from JorgesArcade:

    Does anyone know or can tell me an alternative version to connect multiple pins to one sub instead of using the pinnovators product ?
    Thanks

    From mbwalker - https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/monoprice-8-powered-subwoofer-39#post-7113387

    #1882 5 days ago

    The Fosi BT30D Pro amp with power supply is an Amazon Prime Day deal right now ($87.99 USD).

    #1883 4 days ago
    Quoted from davegauth:

    Great question.... absolutley no bennifit.
    It was availability - the skar was not available in a single voice coil model. So I had to go with a Dual 2ohm and wire it to 4ohm.
    I'd rather use single voice coils if possible - just because I don't have to explain how to wire it to 4ohms and add a confusing extra step during installation.

    I put in a dual voice coil 4 ohm into my Str pin today. I only used one set of connections.

    Is this okay or should I create serial connection to make it 8 ohm??

    #1884 33 hours ago

    Can anyone tell me the size screw I need to get at HD/Lowes to put in the bottom cabinet of a Stern Spike 2 game to mount an aftermarket JBL sub to?

    The screw posts in the game are too short. I forgot to bring one of the bolts and nuts with me and planned to stop by the store on the way home and get what I needed if I can get this answer.

    Thx.

    #1885 31 hours ago
    Quoted from GCS2000:

    Can anyone tell me the size screw I need to get at HD/Lowes to put in the bottom cabinet of a Stern Spike 2 game to mount an aftermarket JBL sub to?
    The screw posts in the game are too short. I forgot to bring one of the bolts and nuts with me and planned to stop by the store on the way home and get what I needed if I can get this answer.
    Thx.

    #8-32

    #1886 31 hours ago
    #1887 28 hours ago

    I removed the upgrade from my table. I’m going to sell it all as a package if anyone is interested in upgrading their Spike 2 game.
    Everything is as new (w/ exception of Fosi power cord)

    SKAR 8” 4ohm cabinet speaker
    695D2556-AC16-4AA1-9304-7BDAA65D54D4 (resized).jpeg695D2556-AC16-4AA1-9304-7BDAA65D54D4 (resized).jpeg
    Alpine S-550 5.25” backbox speakers
    E29470D5-6A0F-4FF5-A97B-28B3ABD478F4 (resized).jpegE29470D5-6A0F-4FF5-A97B-28B3ABD478F4 (resized).jpeg
    Fosi BT30-D 3ch amplifier with Molex 3 way piggyback terminals for turning on amp via game power switch
    09C7D22D-1639-4947-A436-417B55A34441 (resized).jpeg09C7D22D-1639-4947-A436-417B55A34441 (resized).jpeg
    8” spacer w/ screws for cabinet speaker, printed adapters to mount Alpines to pro/premium cabinets without modification, PinSound line out adapter for CPU board, 3ea speaker wires with banana plugs/spade terminals for amp to speaker connection
    493E25BF-FBA8-4EBA-AA99-8505F0B7AFC4 (resized).jpeg493E25BF-FBA8-4EBA-AA99-8505F0B7AFC4 (resized).jpeg

    Everything needed to upgrade the speakers of a Pro/Premium Spike 2 game as suggested here in this thread. I will sell and ship in one box to you for 200$. All is as new with the exception of the amplifier power cord mod.
    DM me if interested in this complete package

    #1888 19 hours ago
    Quoted from roscoepinball:

    Was this a file you released anywhere? This looks great!!!

    I didn’t not release the file, I was hoping to sell a couple as a small side hustle. If you are interested in trying out a prototype shoot me a pm.

    There are 1,888 posts in this topic. You are on page 38 of 38.

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