PDA

View Full Version : ButtKicker discount for Flight Simmers and Gamers



Falcor2007
10-18-2007, 10:45 PM
Hello Everyone

Well I installed a new level of immersion on my simulator. The ButtKicker LFE Kit (Low Frequency Effects) sold by The Guitammer Company Inc. http://www.thebuttkicker.com. It is a low frequency transducer and amplifier that accurately reproduce bass and special effects! The LFE transducer weighs in at 11 pounds and is pushed by a massive 25-pound 1000-watt power amplifier (1900-watts at 2 ohms). This easy installation has added a new dimension to my flight experience. To enhance the sound output I have modified my sound files. I am using a tweaked version sound pack that was downloaded and modified from the Gamers Tools Site (Thanks Gamers Tools!) http://www.thegamerstools.com/. Due to some limitations of these sound files I can foresee a need for a Falcon ButtKicker V 1.0 sound pack exclusively tweaked for the ButtKicker users. Adjustment of some wave sound files can greatly improve the flight experience and increase your awareness of the game environment. For example, flipping a switch or ATC radio calls should not generate seat vibrations while full afterburner should throw you out of your seat. This will make a good subject for a future post.

This equipment is really very sensitive. I can feel the joints and imperfections in the concrete taxiway while I roll from the ramp to the runway threshold. Pushing the throttle forward up to full afterburner is totally exhilarating. The effect produced from just raising my landing gear feels like the wheels have been locked in place under my seat! Explosions around me nearly scare me to death and the artillery fire surrounding the fight arena nearly shakes me out of my pit. The ultimate rush is firing the 20mm cannon and the feel of a good clean bomb release...thump, thump, thump, thump. Ejecting is what I do best because I have had so much practice at it. Haha! The effect produced by the transducer almost has me looking forward to egressing from the aircraft just for the rush. Because of the ButtKicker my simulator has turned into a thrill ride! The sense of strapping on the aircraft has been added to the game. Sensations like the low level vibrations generated by the aircraft when over speeding with a heavy wing load can be felt before it is heard. From now on when anyone asks me what it takes to fly Falcon 4, my response will be a computer, Falcon 4 program, a Cougar and a ButtKicker (rudder pedals would be nice to).

Installation is easy for pit builders using the LFE (see Fig. 7 and eight) or the Gamer transducer (see Fig 1 and 2). There are four attachment holes located on the base of the unit that can be attached to the bottom or back of an Aces II ejection seat. I also use the ButtKicker Gamer, which is designed specifically for office seats. The Gamer has more than enough power to drive my office chair. I set my volume on the power amplifier only to one quarter of the total dial setting. Although the Buttkicker Gamer was designed to attach to the lift cylinder on an office chair, I have an inexpensive attachment bracket that can be used for mounting the transducer to the simulator (see Fig. 3). Using the ButtKicker Gamer, or one of the mini transducers on your simulator is a less expensive solution if you choose not to use the larger LFE transducer. The kinetic output will be reduced but you will still get a thrill ride. The smaller solution includes the mini LFE (4 ohm) and the mini Concert (2 ohm) transducers, which are basically the Gamer transducer with mounting holes. The engineers at Guitammer are a great source for helping you with your installation problems and project needs. If anyone has mounting ideas for either the LFE or the Gamer transducer please post and share your images and comments here for the rest of the community. I would be very interested to see other installation variations.

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/Gamer1.jpg
Figure 1. The main Components of the ButtKicker Gamer - Transducer and Amplifier. Notice how the extruded steel attachment bracket (arm) is unified with the casing of the transducer for efficient vibration transmission.

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/Gamer2.jpg
Figure 2. The ButtKicker Gamer Mounted on my office chair (I purchased a slightly worn, used unit on-line).

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/Flange1.jpg
Figure 3. This is my quick fix for mounting the ButtKicker Gamer to my simulator. Shown is a galvanized plumbing flange and a 3-inch threaded pipe acquired at a local hardware store for only a few dollars. The four bolt holes in the flange are perfect for mounting on flat surfaces.

It's in my nature to take things apart; fortunately there was a cutaway of the transducer at the ButtKicker web site. This will keep my curiosity at bay for now...but later I am going to take it apart and post images. The description below is directly from ButtKicker's web page. (See Fig. 4)

The magnetically suspended piston moves precisely in response to amplified audio signal input. This 3.25 lb mass generates tremendous force that is accurately transferred to whatever the housing is attached to. ButtKicker brand transducers are virtually indestructible and maintenance-free, with many thousands of units in service for over six years... without failure. The ButtKicker brand family of low frequency transducers is used by the world's most demanding customers - IMAX, Disney, Universal Studios, professional and amateur musicians, theme parks and attractions, home theater professionals and enthusiasts, computer and console gamers and car audio installers.

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/TransducerCore1.jpg
Figure 4. Cutaway of transducer core (source from ButtKicker's web site).

One of my concerns installing the LFE transducer was for the integrity of the existing simulator electronics. After talking with their support staff I found them to be very helpful and knowledgeable about my own project needs. The low frequency response vibrations are so responsive my consideration turned toward the integrity disruption of the other circuit boards installed in my pit. I brought this question to the attention of Guitammer and their response was essentially there had not been any issue of this sort reported from other gamers. I feel like this was a valid answer, unfortunately...we are not gamers, we are pit builders! A high power output setting on the amplifier was my biggest concern. After all, the transducers are designed to shake the **** out of a seat or sofa! ButtKicker's advertisement shows a family of four being shaken (not stirred) on a home sofa. That tells you something about the output power of the LFE transducer. If you have the aspiration to do so, shaking the entire simulator with the LFE transducer is probably doable. I question that there could be future issues related to electronic solder joints especially around cold solder welds and integrated circuit chips popping out of their sockets. Using kinetic isolators either on the electronics, the seat or simply turning the power down could easily remedy this concern.

Kinetic isolators should be placed between the main support for the ejection seat and additional rubber can be placed at the interface between the seat rails and the cockpit (See Fig.5). Kinetic isolators effectively reduce the mass of the seat upon which the transducer acts. Theoretically, reducing the mass of the seat will increase the amount of energy acting on the user if the energy is directed correctly.

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/Isolator_placement.jpg
Figure 5. Suggestions for locating the Transducer and the Kinetic Isolators. (Edited from Jason's simulator drawings)

Because the amplifier is so large I would also recommend placing the unit in an area where there is adequate ventilation (See Fig. 6). I have my amplifier enclosed with a 110-volt cooling fan circulating air around the unit (that's probably overkill cooling). Current draw for your pit should also be evaluated to ensure adequate power supply to the simulator electronics.

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/amp1.jpg
Figure 6. BKA-1000-4A1 Power Amplifier, 900 watts @ 2 ohms, 1000 watts @ 4 ohms. Can power up to 4 BK-LFE's Available in 120v and 240v NOT SWITCHABLE.

Call sign "Getsno", a serious California Buttkicker LFE user, flies Falcon 4.0: Allied Force. Getsno made the suggestion that more effect can be obtained from chairs that are located on hard surfaces by isolating the contact points with Rubber Kinetic Isolators (Fig. 7). Hard surfaces dampen the energy that the transducer transmits into the seat. More energy is going into the floor instead of Kicking your Butt! He also indicated that a rug did not adequately isolate the chair from the hard floor or concrete surface. His recommendation is to use Kinetic Isolators to improve and maximize vibration response. The Guitammer Company has an assortment of Kinetic Isolators for varying weight applications. Getsno experimented with mounting the transducer two ways: horizontally and vertically (See Fig. 7 and eight). He discovered that mounting the transducer's vibration direction perpendicular to the horizontal plane of the seat worked best as shown in fig 8. The chair sensitivity was higher and less power is needed to get the same effect. One problem that Getsno now faces with his ButtKicker LFE is he doesn't know if he is experiencing a California earthquake or if his volume is set just a little to high. Just joking Getsno...Haha!

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/Getsno1.jpg
Figure 7. I'm guessing "Getsno" likes to fly with a bag of popcorn on his left knee and a flight chart on his right. Haha! From this image you can see the 11-pound transducer mounted horizontally. Red line placed over the transducer indicates piston throw direction.

http://i224.photobucket.com/albums/dd180/earlbuttkicker/Getsno2.jpg
Figure 8. Rear view of Getsno's seat showing the Kinetic Isolators and LFE transducer mounted perpendicular to the horizontal seat plane (preferred method). Thanks for the images and the suggestions Getsno! Great design!

From my experience with this technology, I was determined that other flight simmers and gamers should get the opportunity to enjoy the added immersion of this cool effect hardware. After a conversation with the staff from The Guitammer Company, they have agreed to discount their products for our Flight Simulator community currently in the USA and Canada - for a short while a limited time only - to help get the word out.

Statement from The Guitammer Company: "VERY SORRY, BUT WE ABSOLUTELY CANNOT EXTEND THIS LIMITED, DISCOUNTED PRIVATE (SPECIAL) OFFER OUTSIDE THE USA AND CANADA. ALSO, ONLY 120V UNIT PRODUCTS ARE AVAILABLE THROUGH GUITAMMER'S E-STORE."

To enjoy this discount, utilize The Guitammer Company's e-store, "ButtKicker Direct". Go to www.buttkickergear.com (http://www.buttkickergear.com) and simply input the following (secret) coupon code(s) when you get to your Shopping Cart screen.

The coupon code, "ETGR" works for just the Gamer and reduces your product price from $149.95 to $59.99.

The coupon code, "ET" gets you a 30% discount all other products and accessories.

The ButtKicker LFE Kit works great for simulator cockpit builders whereas the ButtKicker Gamer works great for Desktop Simmers and gamers. These special prices to us are the lowest I have seen anywhere and I don't know how long Guitammer will continue this exclusive offer to the Simulator community. My suggestion to you is take advantage of this limited time offer and order one for yourself first then tell your friends.

Again... at the link http://www.thebuttkicker.com/ simply select "ButtKicker Direct" from the left navigation window. There you can choose Gaming from the left navigation window. After selecting items for your shopping cart, check out and enter the code into the spot "Got a coupon code? Enter it here". Apply the code and the discount price will appear. For multiple items use and apply the "ET" code first, then enter and apply the code "ETGR" again if you are purchasing the ButtKicker Gamer. This will further increase your discount (on the Gamer only).

Guitammer backs their products with a warranty. I was impressed with cost verses quality and I was also impressed with the statement found on their warranty web page, "We will do whatever it takes to make sure you are happy - end of story". That type of commitment from a company is rare in today's marketplace.

I hope this post has been informative and helpful for everyone interested in this type of technology. I researched other manufactures that produce similar equipment but I found that for the price ButtKicker had the best deal and their products were easily matched to their amplifiers. If you have any questions about this post please feel free to PM me.

Falcor2007

Bearcat99
10-19-2007, 05:44 AM
I have one.. At $150 it is a luxury... at $60 which is what I paid for mine.. come to think of it I think it was actually $50 that I paid..... it was agreat addition. I need a new chair though.. mine rattles too much.

Ritter_Cuda
10-19-2007, 07:54 AM
the ETGR code does NOT work (sigh)

Ritter_Cuda
10-19-2007, 08:04 AM
ok worked this time most have had something blocked on my side

Lurch1962
10-19-2007, 05:57 PM
Why does the original post look like an advert...?

joejoemonkey
10-20-2007, 12:12 AM
the buttkicker is available for $59.95 w/o a coupon at
http://www.fspilotshop.com/product_info.php?products_id=264
and im sure it delivers outside of the United States.

striker-85
10-21-2007, 08:32 PM
I sprung for a Buttkicker as well. I give it a http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif, works great!