I’ve never really been a fan of talking car alarms, most of the ones I have played with have been of the cheap and nasty variety that sound similar to an Asian man doing a bad Stephen Hawkins impersonation. It is not surprising that I was having some major doubts when Carl presented me with the Viper 516L voice module and asked me if it could be installed into the BATRAM.
Before dismissing the module as naff and telling Carl that I thought it was a silly idea, I decided to rig the unit up to have a play with it. The 516L came with two pre-recorded Armed/Disarmed messages but both sounded way too American for my taste and certainly didn’t gell with the BATRAM theme. On the plus side you could record your own messages for the Auxiliary inputs which looked like a potential solution. I wired the thing up to a battery and recorded my first message.
Playback take one
“Bugger off”, “Bugger off”, “Bugger off”, “Bugger off”, “Bugger off”, “Bugger off”, “Bugger off”, “Bugger off”.
Such a charming car alarm would probably be effective, I could certainly see it getting some attention!
What I had learnt through my childishness was that if any of the auxiliary inputs were grounded for less than half a second then the unit would speak once, any longer than this then the message would be repeated 8 times. This needed to be avoided as it would quickly become annoying!
The solution would be to use the alarms Lock and Unlock pulse to trigger the auxiliary inputs and Carl could then record his own message. I told Carl I felt it would be possible and that if he could sort out the sound then I’d be happy to take care of the rest.
The next time I saw Carl he had the recordings ready. He had managed to download the voice of Ed-209 from Robocop and had recorded 3 messages.
VOICE RECORDINGS TO BE POSTED SOON…
The next mission was to transfer the voice from the computer to the voice module, after some early efforts which sounded pathetic on playback we realised that we would need a 3.5mm headphone socket to connect the computer to the module because using the built in microphone resulted in a horrid hissing back ground noise.
Carl dashed out and got the required lead and was soon back . We had a car battery rigged up to power the voice module sitting next to his computer. This was proving to be a challenging exercise and quite a bizarre on at that but the results were very pleasing. An hour later the recording were on the Viper 516L. Any fears about the BATRAM sounding like Asian voice over of KITT from Knightrider where now gone. The Hoff’s little car now seems quite lame when put besides the Evil sounding BATRAM!
All that was left for me to do now was to install it.