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Amplified Scary Car Startup

With lots of switches - for effect and as a diagnostic tool.
  [vote for,

Contact microphones attached to all the noise producing parts of the car have their signal routed to the 30 speaker 1,000 watt stereo system. Engine, water pump, oil pump, power steering fluid pump, alternator etc.

Each mic feed has a switch and after you start the car, you flip the switches on the panel one by one piping in the glorious sounds from around the car, building the excitement as you do so, until there's a glorious mechanical din throbbing through the passenger compartment. Engine, RMMMMMM! Gas pump, "Womwowmwomwom! Alternator, Screeeeeeeee! Etc.

Not all these mechanisms will sound pleasant in their natural state so they will be heavily equalized to sound awesome instead of painful. This is a critical part of this. Notch filters and parametric equalizers, would be added to make these systems sound "musical".

The effect would be like a conductor taking the podium while the orchestra tunes up. All a sort of aural foreplay before you get down to the business of driving this magnificent vehicle to its limits.

Once your date was suitably impressed you could push the single "MUTE" button so you can hear her tell you how awesome your car is. (Or ask you to drop her off at the next corner.)

Of course the best way to implement this is to just have the audio information feed into the onboard diagnostic computer that could "hear" and detect problems beyond the range of human hearing

doctorremulac3, Sep 15 2015


       I like the idea of having individual things come on one at a time so you can hear all of the pumps and fans, but I don't like fake sound. It's just... fake.
DIYMatt, Sep 16 2015

       Well, it wouldn't' be fake, just modified.   

       But I see what you're saying, it would have to have some kind of legitimacy or it would just be a bunch of dumb noise makers.   

       Which would be silly.   

       Yea, I agree. I'll take out everything but equalization.
doctorremulac3, Sep 16 2015

       (+)This might be good if the sounds were real. The ear of a mechanic is tuned by experience to detect trouble and being able to isolate the problem when a customer complains of hearing a noise would be good.
cudgel, Sep 16 2015

       I was thinking too that this might actually be a diagnostic tool to some extent as well as a frivolous toy.   

       One thing this could do that current systems couldn't do is locate that squeaking sound coming from a slipping belt for instance. "Water pump? No. (click) Power steering? No. (click) "Oil pump? (click) "SQUEEKSQUEEKSQUEEK!" "OK, oil pump belt's slipping.   

       Of course the best way to implement this is to just have the audio information feed into the onboard diagnostic computer that could "hear" and detect problems beyond the range of human hearing.   

       Hmmm. Triple Hmmm.
doctorremulac3, Sep 16 2015

       30 speaker, 100 watt...? I like this idea but that's a pitiful amount of power in less its 100 watts for each speaker.   

       Also, I think I would drive with a system like this if it were attached to my turbo
evilpenguin, Sep 16 2015

       Ohhh! The turbo, forgot about that!   

       I know it's probably adding more special effects than actual sounds, but having the turbo activate some kind of sub-sonic drivers that shake the car while it torqued up would be pretty awesome.   

       "I'm turning on the turbocharger now, might wanna hold onto something."   

       //30 speaker, 100 watt...? I like this idea but that's a pitiful amount of power in less its 100 watts for each speaker.//   

       NOTE: Correction has been applied.
doctorremulac3, Sep 16 2015

       I think it would be nice if cars came with pre-flight checklists, which drivers and co-pilots were encouraged to go through each time, out loud.   

       In the case of there being no co-pilot, the car could (via a suitable Guy Gibson voice synthesiser) call out the checklist items, and listen for the appropriate feedback from the driver.   

       It would also be nice if the starter motor was only about 1/4 Watt, but worked by gradually spinning up a heavy flywheel, which would make that nice spooling-up flywheely sound.   

       Even nicer, of course, would be a Coffman engine starter.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 16 2015

       This reminds me... I visited someone's cabinetry shop the other day. He had just purchased a new automatic planer/sander. It had multiple 30+ HP motors, and when it is turned on, they automatically spin up one at a time to avoid overloading the circuit it's running on (200A or 400A, I don't remember). The sounds was impressive. Almost as good as this idea...   

       I like the diagnostic element of this. And you wouldn't need to be a trained mechanic t benefit. The owner of this car would get used to the sounds, so when something changed, they would know. Storing recordings once a month could allow going back to hear if something is changing slowly.   

       And regardless
scad mientist, Sep 16 2015

       This started out as kind of a joke with a possible side benefit, (not that I wouldn't want one) but the idea of storing and comparing sound levels of various parts of the car for diagnostic purposes is sort of new approach to keeping tabs on things. Moving parts make noise and a change in sound is very common to malfunctioning moving mechanisms.   

       Bearings, belts, cogwheels, camshafts, wheels, pumps, even hoses often change their sound profile when they malfunction.   

       I've got pretty extensive experience with contact microphones, they're neat little devices. You can isolate each and every little piece you want to monitor by putting these little electronic "stethoscopes" wherever you want with two simple little wires coming from each going to a central processor.   

       Thing is, I'm not sure there's any other practical way to get imminent failure information BESIDES sound generation profile from some of these systems. This is cheap and doable.   

       Hmmm hmmm hmmm squared.
doctorremulac3, Sep 16 2015

       Oh yea, I know that most of the stuff starts up at once. I think the water pump waits till the water gets up to temperature, a/c drive wheel doesn't clutch in until you turn it on, etc. but for the most part everything starts turning at the same time. Alternator, oil pump, gas pump, radiator fan among others. The individual turning on of each system monitor would be for effect.
doctorremulac3, Sep 16 2015

       [+] The hole in my exhaust is finally loud enough to completely drown out the radiator fan. I think I'm going to get one of those looks when I go into the shop and tell the guy to "mostly, but not completely, fix it", to retain the growl without the concomitant hearing loss.
FlyingToaster, Sep 16 2015

       Knock sensors have been around for several years and allow the engine to survive low quality fuel by retarding the ignition timing to prevent detonation. This idea seems to expand on the idea.
cudgel, Sep 16 2015


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