There are a lot of “extras” to my rig that are worth mentioning, but not worth devoting a whole individual page to! There’s just not that much to say about them I guess. So, this page serves as a “catch all” for all the extra parts in my rig.
First up is my side monitor, a decent but cheap, 27 inch, 1080p Acer. I call it a “side monitor” even though it’s actually sitting above and to the right of my main monitor on a small, wall mounted shelf. I give it the easy job of displaying all my side-apps like the controller software for the motion platform, Twitch, game maps, and other supporting apps.
I’m picky about keyboards. I do a lot of typing for my day job so a quality keyboard is appreciated. While my Corsair K70 RGB using Cherry MX Blue switches has a few years on it, it’s one of the best gaming keyboards I’ve used and I’m quite happy with it.
That 3-holed piece of metal you see across the top of the keyboard has a few long screws through them, and is holding the keyboard down on the “table” to keep the motion platform from tossing the keyboard off in fast motion games! It works fine and holds well even though it looks quite janky. I should try to come up with a more polished looking solution.
So, this is where things get a little weird, and it’s only by coincidence. Honest! I am currently using this cheap-ass, kinda nasty-sounding, Kinter MA-170 Audio Power Amp to power these beautiful, olivewood, Omega Super 3i’s monitors.
In practice, listening to engine sounds most of the time at moderate volume levels, this amp does fine. Using it to listen to music is a different story. It’s … not great.
The Omega Super 3i speakers are capable of much more than what I ask of them here. I purchased them years ago for a specific purpose. They have been retired from that job and now serve me well on the sim rig.
The Omega Super 3i’s obviously aren’t great for bass, and semi-truck diesel engines put out a lot of bass! To help reproduce the “balls” of a semi-truck engine, I use a Polk Audio PSW 108, 10″, 100 watt subwoofer. I positioned the sub to the bottom-right of the driver’s seat, close to where the engine in a real truck would be. The position of this bass source (engine location) helps the immersion quite a bit. My Cummins Turbo-Diesel engine has house-shaking power thanks to this sub!
To round out the audio system, I’m using this Blue Snowball USB Microphone on a microphone stand. I’m not sure about this mic. I’ve not been able to adjust the microphone input sensitivity far enough to give me a decent looking signal in Windows 10, yet it seems to work pretty decent. This limitation in audio gain seems to be the way it was designed. I’ve read several other comments on the webs about this lack of audio gain from the Blue Snowball.
Oh, one more audio thing, although you don’t really hear it. Under the seat, I mounted a ButtKicker Gamer to give that diesel engine some grunt. This thing kicks ass! Imagine a subwoofer, without a cone, encased in a sturdy metal mount, and powered by a 90 watt amp. That’s a ButtKicker. You’re gonna feel it!
It would be foolish to not protect all this motion sim goodness from the common brown-outs and electrical thunderstorms we have here in the midwest. I have two solar arrays on my house and my power line voltage runs a little high at about 122 volts AC. Voltage drops and spikes are pretty common, so I use this CyberPower CP1500AVRLCD 1500VA battery backup to buffer and protect the power going into the whole sim rig. The 1500VA model handles the load of the sim rig just fine. I’ve used CyberPower battery backups to protect internet servers for years and they’ve always been great!