Digital Sound

The world of digital operation holds huge potential for realistic model railway operation. In this section we will show you how to install sound decoders into locomotives big and small across 'OO', 'O' and 'N' gauge as well as revealing more about the abilities of this control system in future features author by Mike Wild and Paul Chetter.

Digital Sound modelling guides

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STAFF PROJECTS: New Junctions for New Junction II

RICHARD WATSON

As New Junction II begins to take shape, sleeper spacing, a lack of track pins and a new track formation have added to the workload, as RICHARD WATSON outlines.

RICHARD WATSON
Dapol GWR Manor sound installation guide Feature Premium

Wheeltapper sound for the Dapol ‘Manor’

MIKE WILD

The Dapol GWR ‘Manor’ 4-6-0 is designed with sound installation in mind. MIKE WILD explores its simplicity with a new sound profile from the Wheeltapper collection on an ESU V5 chip. Read the full guide and watch our demonstration video here.

MIKE WILD
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ZIMO Digital sound for the Hornby HST

PAUL CHETTER

The scream of turbochargers epitomised the High Speed Trains when they entered service. PAUL CHETTER sets out to recreate the spectacle with digital sound in ‘OO’ gauge using the Hornby 8-pin chassis HST power cars as the basis.

PAUL CHETTER
Hornby 9F sound installation guide Feature Premium

Locoman sound for the Hornby ‘9F’

MIKE WILD

The arrival of Hornby’s all-new and stunning model of the BR ‘9F’ 2-10-0 was a sound installation project too good to resist. MIKE WILD shows how you can install sound into the Hornby ‘9F’ as designed and with optional extras.

MIKE WILD
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Big sound for a Peco ‘Small England’

How do you fit Digital Command Control, stay-alive and sound into a tiny ‘OO9’ gauge locomotive? JOHN GAY reveals how.

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LEGOMAN ‘ Electra ’ - Class 91 sound

The new Hornby Class 91 has all the looks of the real locomotives and a powerful chassis too, but how do you add sound? MIKE WILD takes one apart to show how simple it is and completes a matching Mk 4 DVT at the same time.

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YouChoos Class 47 sound upgrades

MIKE WILD

Digital sound specialist YouChoos has created a brand-new sound file for the ever-popular Class 47 diesel-electric utilising the latest ZIMO MS series decoders. MIKE WILD shows how it can be used to upgrade the outgoing 21-pin generation Bachmann Class 47.

MIKE WILD
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Choosing Speakers for your Sound Decoder

Understanding two values will ensure you always pick the right speaker set up for your sound decoder. MIKE WILD covers the basics in this beginner’s guide.

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SPROG DCC Decoder Programmer

Mark Chivers.

Configuring digital decoders for optimum performance can prove challenging, especially for beginners. MARK CHIVERS considers one such solution in the intriguingly named SPROG DCC decoder programmer.

Mark Chivers.

VIDEO: Accurascale Class 37 sound demonstration

MIKE WILD

The latest sound fitted samples of the soon to be released Accurascale Class 37 for ‘OO’ gauge are here. Mark Chivers and Richard Watson find out what is in store.

MIKE WILD
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STAFF PROJECTS: Electrical endeavours for New Junction

With the build racing ahead, it was time to pause for reflection giving time to complete the more mundane tasks on this new ‘OO’ layout. RICHARD WATSON plods on with the essential but repetitive tasks.

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Big ‘Cat’ sound for the Dapol Class 68

The Vossloh Class 68s are one of the most modern and powerful diesel-electrics running today. MIKE WILD installs the latest generation MS series ZIMO decoder into the feature rich Dapol ‘OO’ gauge model.

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LOCOMAN CLASS 37 SOUND DEMONSTRATION

The English Electric Class 37 is one of the most popular diesel locomotives and this distinctive class is Locoman Sounds’ first digital audio project for a diesel. With one eye on spending, MIKE WILD installs a D&H decoder into an older generation 8-pin Bachmann model.

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Platinum purple bulleid

The repaint of ‘West Country’ 34027 into a special Platinum Jubilee purple livery has generated huge interest. RICHARD HALL shows how you can recreate the look on a super-detailed Hornby Bulleid ‘Pacific’.

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Locoman ‘W1' sound installation guide

New sound projects for the Gresley ‘W1’ 4-6-4 are available from Locoman Sounds to suit both the original high pressure and later rebuilt versions of this unique steam engine. MIKE WILD shows how to install Doehler & Haass decoders into Hornby’s ‘OO’ models with exclusive KeyModelWorld sound demonstration video.

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Killer ‘20s’ renumbered, weathered and sound fitted

The Direct Rail Services-operated Class 20/3s offer an attractive and different locomotive for the modern railway scene. For his latest rolling stock project MIKE WILD decided to renumber, weather and sound fit a pair of the recent Bachmann ‘OO’ gauge models.

Hornby Sentinel sound demonstration Feature Premium

Hornby Sentinel Sound installation

PAUL CHETTER describes how to add an invisible sound installation to Hornby’s diminutive Sentinel industrial locomotive.

Class 66 sound demonstration Feature Premium

Installing ESU sound in the Bachmann Class 66

Bachmann's Class 66 is a simple locomotive to upgrade to digital sound. In this KeyModelWorld exclusive feature MIKE WILD installs an ESU 21-pin decoder with Legomanbiffo's high performance sound together with a powerful speaker and stay alive into the 'OO' gauge model. Read the full guide here and watch our sound demonstration video.

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Digital sound for the Hornby 4-VEP

With the prospect of a new and upgraded 4-VEP from Hornby in 2022, MIKE WILD looked back at the first versions to introduce digital sound while also improving the front gangways in this modelling guide.

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SUPER SOUND FOR THE BACHMANN GRESLEY ‘V2’

Bachmann’s all-new Gresley ‘V2’ has been designed with digital sound in mind, but is there a way to introduce a bigger and more powerful speaker in the 2-6-2? MIKE WILD explores the options with a brand new sound file from Locoman Sounds.

VIDEO: Hornby's Tornado with Locoman Sounds

The A1 Steam Trust's new build Peppercorn 'A1' 4-6-2 60163 Tornado is the subject of our latest sound demonstration video to go with our full installation guide in Hornby Magazine Yearbook No 14 for 2022 - on sale now. Watch our completed installation which uses Hornby's BR lined blue liveried model of 60163 plus Locoman Sounds' all-new sound profile for the high-profile main line registered 'Pacific' here.

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‘Western’ ambassadors for sound

The distinctive note of the ‘Western’ hydraulics is highly sought after in model form. PAUL CHETTER installs sound into Heljan and Dapols model of the Class 52 in ‘OO’ scale and compares the steps required and the results achieved.

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'J50' sound and stay alive

Compact tank engines aren’t always the easiest when it comes to digital sound installations, but Hornby’s ‘J50’ 0-6-0T can be equipped with sound and stay alive. MIKE WILD shows how he did it in this step by step guide.

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Digital Voyager

Bachmann’s ‘OO’ gauge models of the Class 220 and 221 Voyager units pre-date the inclusion of decoder interfaces, but with the right parts they can be upgraded to digital sound and lighting. MIKE WILD shows how.

Class 70 sound demonstration Feature Premium

PowerHaul Class 70 digital sound upgrades

The Freightliner and Colas Rail Freight operated Class 70 diesel locomotives are amongst the most advanced on the British network. MIKE WILD shows how a ZIMO decoder can be installed into the Bachmann ‘OO’ gauge model along with DCC Concepts and Rail Exclusive products for a full suite of sound.

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Back to ‘Schools’

Digital sound installations don’t have to be complex or mind boggling, as MIKE WILD shows by turning his attention to a Hornby ‘Schools’ 4-4-0 with a new sound profile from Locoman Sounds.

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Hawksworth ‘Hall’ sound

The arrival of a new batch of GWR ‘Modified Hall’ 4-6-0s from Bachmann for ‘OO’ gauge prompted MIKE WILD to take a fresh look at the model’s potential for sound. In this step by step guide, we install a ZIMO decoder and powerful speaker for a realistic and immersive driving experience.

VIDEO: Bachmann Class 57 sound demonstration

The Class 57 is an important part of the modern railway scene and one stands out from the crowd – 57307 Lady Penelope in its Cable Thieves-branded DRS livery. MIKE WILD and RICHARD WATSON discuss this Bachmann Collectors Club limited edition after it's sound installation.

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Thunderbirds are go!

The Class 57 is an important part of the modern railway scene and one stands out from the crowd – 57307 Lady Penelope in its Cable Thieves-branded DRS livery. MIKE WILD picks up a Bachmann Collectors Club limited edition of the unique locomotive for this sound installation guide.

Hornby 'West Country' sound installation Feature Premium

'West Country' Special

Who says installing digital sound is hard? PAUL CHETTER takes on Hornby’s air-smoothed ‘West Country’ and discovers that installation of sound and much more is within the abilities of all modellers. This feature from the Hornby Magazine archive includes a brand new sound demonstration video featuring 34067 Tangmere.