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So to recap from my cabinet thread, I had some issues develop - serious ones - related to my shaker motor and how it was starting to impact my vpin Radiant Silverball. When I was streaming Last Action Hero on Saturday evening, the Pinscape suddenly seemed to bang the space bar repeatedly. Post-stream testing ultimately showed that sustained shaker use was starting to cause the computer to hard-lock. The computer that I had swapped in has a "tall" CPU cooler that oscillates when the shaker is active, and I suspect it was too much for it. I removed the shaker from the config, and then physically removed the shaker from the cabinet. But what to do, I've grown used to having something go off for the shaker, but clearly I can't use a real one, plus the one I did have installed I could never manage to get the intensity turned down to where I actually wanted it.


I came up with a solution, using an intended addition to my Surround Sound Feedback setup.




So this is now, effectively, my shaker motor - a transducer mini bass puck. It's mounted near the coin door, kind of centered left to right. I've had it for months, and finally decided to get it installed.


What I did was I mounted the shaker motor to a board, set it on top of my standing mat that I have in front of the pinballs, held it down with my knees, and recorded it as I put voltage to it with my benchtop power supply on my soldering cart. A little janky, but I got an appropriate sound for what I had in mind, which was the goal.


I took the sound file into Audacity, and worked on removing most of the higher frequency - I was aiming for something that would play predominately on a subwoofer installed in 7.1. This meant everything above 200Hz had to go in the trash.


With that done, I looked at Last Action Hero - I had a pretty good idea of how the shaker would act - and I found how to reference the appropriate coil via Earthshaker, and react to that call. I dropped in a ShakerTimer timer on Last Action Hero with an interval of 30 and nonactive, and applied the following routines:


SolCallback(16)    = "ShakerMotor"

Sub ShakerMotor(enabled)
    If enabled Then
        ShakeTimer.Enabled = 1
        playsound SoundFX("ShakerMotorLow",DOFContactors)
        ShakeTimer.Enabled = 0
    End If
End Sub

Sub ShakeTimer_Timer()
    Nudge 0,1
    Nudge 90,1
    Nudge 180,1
    Nudge 270,1
End Sub 


"ShakerMotorLow" is the name of the sound file that I imported into the table to serve as the shaker.


It took some playing around with the subwoofer volume, but I got it to where we can feel when the "shaker" goes off, can hear it despite it being on the subwoofer itself, and yet the cabinet won't be losing parts to vibration anymore. And it does work more or less as intended when I played Last Action Hero.


My intent is to install the same "mod" on Earthshaker (really just swap in the sound), and play that on Tuesday on my Twitch stream. There was no way I was going to play that without some sort of shaker effect. And going forward is the process of getting it installed on any table that supports a shaker motor, and then on any table I want some sort of shaker effect - like hitting the castle in Medieval Madness.

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