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Arduino Sound System

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Afternoon All

I've been looking around for a compact and capable sound system for my Riva Aquarama build.  So lightweight, small form factor, able to utilise an engine startup, and a proportional engine running sound.  I've tried a couple of off the shelf units but am frustrated by the lack of control.

So I've found this: [size=78%][/size]

And I wondered whether anyone has any experience with it..?

Best regards

Yes I have used this.

The sounds are amazing when you consider the investment - less than 10-15 excluding a speaker but including an amp.

It uses an 8bit DAC so the sound is a bit thin in places with some odd sonic artifacts - I am working on something along the same line but with a 12 bit DAC - sound is head turning, super rich.

The software this guy has written is pretty complex but you don't need to understand it - just how to use it in your project

To use you need to be able to compile and then upload some code to a little board called and "esp32" - all using freely available tools

PM me if you would like specific help
PS What sound boards have you tried so far?



If anybody wants to hear the type of sound - check this out this video

Hi 3PO

Thanks for this.

I've looked at the Model Radio Workshop 'Petrol Motor Sound Generator', but its a synthesised sound with a limited number of cylinders, not really what I need for the deep rumble of twin V8s in a Riva.  Then I tried the Mtronics system, gives a startup and a running sound, better but engine sound has a delay and is very sensitive to throttle so its idle.. idle... then a frantic engine racing.  And not adjustable in any way except volume.

So the solution I'm looking at is actually the earlier version that does not use the ESP32, its Arduino Pro Mini based, uses a PAM8403 as the amplifier, and I'm using an MP1854 to get the voltage down to 5V:

I've just added some header pins to start testing.

There a video illustrating the sound for this build here: [size=78%][/size]

I know he's moved on to the improved ESP32 version, but I don't really need all those features yet.

My speaker is built in at the bow of my Aquarama, I'm hoping to use the cabin to enhance the sound, make it deeper with some resonance.


I'm not into the programming of the Arduino, but as you say I don't really need to be to use it.  I do like the fact that various parameters can be adjusted in config files, and it's possible to use custom sounds. I've extracted the startup and running samples from a full sized Aquarama, then used a bin2hex tool to generate the correct format.  The Arduino has such limited memory its tricky to get the sound files small enough.  I'll get it put together on the bench and see what happens...

If this goes well maybe the ESP version next time, I'm thinking that as that version supports multiple sound streams concurrently it would be possible to run two engine streams with slight config timing changes so they resonate at different points, as the real engines do.

Will keep you updated.

Best regards

Hi David,

Looks like you have it sussed!

The ESP32 is a very different beast to the Nano and more than likely cheaper as well. But biggest benefit is memory and 2 channel DAC facility ) oh and WiFi and BlueTooth & & & & :)

Worst thing about ESP32 is getting the computer environment ready to allow you to use it - done this a few times one of which left me scratching my head for hours as it simply did not work...

The ESP32 has 2 DAC channels - by memory the solution written by TheDIYGuy999 puts 3 sources of sound to each channel.

Never thought it was as easy as just doing maths on the encoded sound (hex) files and then outputting the result to the DAC - quite a revalation

Look foward to your update


Hi 3PO (and All)

First test today...  And instantly fried an amplifier... Put 7v through it rather than 5v...

Luckily as you say they're cheap and sold in packs so I tweaked the voltage and put another Amplifier together.

And now it works:

I've now got to look at the curves.h file to try to setup the throttle curve, and the speed multiplier to get it 'running' a little faster, but quite pleased that its already outputting an actual Aquarama V8 start up, idle and run sound.  Instant throttle response, so already ahead of the MRW and Mtroniks hardware already.


Best regards


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