Introducing the QSI Titan
Posted on 8. March 2011
QSI’s New Titan DC/DCC Sound & Power Decoders Break the Stereo Sound Barrier.
Fred Severson, a Principal and Chief Engineer of QSI (Quinn-Severson Industries) announced today the imminent release of the new Quantum DC/DCC “Titan Series” digital sound decoders. According to Fred, a seasoned veteran of locomotive sound unit designs for most of the major locomotive manufacturers, “The Titan Series represents the culmination and pinnacle of more than 30 years of locomotive sound system development by QSI.” He went on to say that, “The Titans performance features dwarf the current leading technology options and unquestionably represent a mega step into the next generation. For example, the Titans flexibility offers the user in ONE decoder more features than are currently available by combining all the features of the TWO leading competing products."
"You can order the Titan specifically for the locomotive and sound you want and still have the option to choose by CV selection: multiple prime movers, horns, whistles, bells, etc. In addition the user can also cut, paste, edit and/or download completely different or updated sound files. Another good news is that aftermarket pricing will be comparable to the current QSI Q2 aftermarket products, the Revolutions, Magnums and Aristo PnPs."
"Conversely, the locomotive manufacturers' pricing will increase because the current OEM products - Q1a - use a special dedicated sound processor that has been discontinued in favor of the new advanced Titan sound processor that costs a little more. We have contacted all the various OEMs that we design sound systems for and some have elected to make the jump to the next generation Titans and some have not. Since we are now concentrating all our development efforts on the Titan, we will no longer be offering the Q1, Q2 OEM sound systems to the companies that have elected to maintain the status quo of the predecessor systems. In the short run we will sacrifice some revenue, but eventually the Titan quality will become the “gold standard” and the market leader. Furthermore, many US Patents are issued or pending to protect QSI’s technology, QSI’s OEM’s and the Titan’s future.”
When asked about price competition Fred said, “We understand that in the rapidly developing sound decoder market there are prices ranging from the $50 to $130. As such, some users may elect to purchase quantity rather than quality, so be it. However, we also understand that all users have a favorite locomotive and for that one they will go for the best and that’s where the Titan comes in. Running a Titan along with lower resolution sound decoders will make many Titan fans.”
About the Titan’s Sounds
The Titans boast an advanced 2nd Generation custom proprietary sound processor, that has significantly more horse power than the present leading 32 bit technology offerings. In addition to the high resolution digital sound, the Titan's sound engine packs a surprise: exclusive breakthrough stereo sound. Each stereo channel has 32 independent controllable sounds, on-off-volume or a total of 64 for mono. All this may seem excessive, overwhelming, ridiculous and much more than anyone would need, but the devil is in the details!
Here is what all this “tech talk” translates to for the average model railroader: the ultimate level of realism in features like dual separate prime movers or double and triple articulated chuffs, physical harmonious separation of horn & whistle bells and other loco sound control options. Take for example, due in future software releases, the feature that multi-chime horn sounds will be played by their individual chimes using Titan’s additional sound channels. This not only allows the user to make up any horn sound he wants from the basic chimes - prototypical or his own custom horns, but also to play horns where each chime will contribute its own character in response to the horn command.
Then there is something QSI calls “atmospherics” that creates the environmental sound effects changes when a locomotive passes through different spatial environments, like from a village to country, again adding another sound feature mimicking the real thing.
Titan’s (Non-Sound Related) Decoder Features
The Titans can not only boast the next generation performance in sound but there are many new “motor control” and “lighting” features in future releases, to further enhance performance:
- Bi-Directional Digital Communication
- High Speed Bi-Directional Service Mode Programming
- CPU controlled “Super Cap Hold-Up Option”
- Set “Auto Stop Distance” Based on Speed and Prototypical Braking
Many more of these unique exclusive decoder features are detailed in the feature list below.
In anticipation of the Titans arrival, crews have been around the country for the past two years making high resolution digital stereo recordings of many of the most popular steam and diesel locomotives. Here are a few:
- Last Winton 201 Motor Captured In High-Def Audio Prior To Retirement
- Quest for Fire: Recording the Locomotives of Strasburg and Cass
Many more are in process or planned. Also, in conjunction with the stereo recordings and mandated by the Titan's 64 sound channels, new recording techniques were developed using four microphones with four separate channels. The microphones were specifically located to capture all the distinct locomotive sounds from start up, idle warm up, loaded acceleration, notching, transition, deceleration, coasting, braking, and more, through shutdown. These locomotive recording techniques represent an industry first and are unequaled in scope. The result is that the Titan gives the user 3X more actual locomotive running sounds throughout the complete running range than the current products offer.
Backwards Compatibility: Q1a, Q2, Q3
In conjunction with QSI’s policy of making an effort to breathe new life into and supporting its older technology products there is more good news. Owners of the older OEM (Q1a) sound systems offered in locomotives made by Atlas, Broadway Ltd, Life-Like, Intermountain and others, will be able to update to some Q2 Revolution era sound files. This is accomplished by using the Quantum Programmer or by sending in their Q1a Upgrade Chips for reprogramming.
In the same concept, Q2, Revolutions, Magnums, and Aristo PnPs will be able to download some aspects of the new Q3 Titan files also with the Quantum Programmer as described above. Note that due to hardware differences some features will be lost when upgrading to the next levels. Select legacy sounds will be available as the product matures.
Current Pending Orders
As is the case when technology transitions to the next level, some customers have pending orders/repairs for the discontinued products. All such orders will be shipped using the equivalent Titan replacements at the same pricing.