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How to make the cars sound better while still keeping the fuel restrictions


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#1 scolbourne

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 11:55

I can see that the manufacturers want to make F1 a research base for more economical cars and appear to be environmentally responsible. Therefore to make the cars sound better we have to make the engines rev higher whilst still using the same fuel restrictions (100kg per race). The fuel flow restriction I feel is a questionable rule but I can see that it is how the max horsepower of a turbo car is restricted otherwise they could be producing over 1500hp which could be rather dangerous. I would like to drop the fuel flow restriction but can see the arguments against this.

 

The main complaint from spectators is the sound of the cars,  this   being less loud and lower revs.

 Also the cars are trying  to be efficient  with their fuel they probably are not running even at the maximum allowed revs.

 

What tweaks to the rules would cure this whilst still meeting the 100kg of fuel per 300km race ? (probably hypothetically as I can't see the rules being changed at this stage)

 

Even smaller engines or with less boost would have to rev higher to get the same power.

 

Would a 500cc V6 turbo engine achieve these goals ?

 

What engine sounds the best ?    my guess  V12 non-turbo

What turbo engine sounds the best ?

At what rpm is the sound going to have the most appeal ?   my guess 22000rpm

Could exhaust  pipe  modifications improve the sound ?


Edited by scolbourne, 17 March 2014 - 11:59.


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#2 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 12:08

The easiest fix would be working on the trackside mic and the sound mixing on the broadcast, so you can actually hear he existing sound.

 

You don't need insane RPM on turbos for them to sound acceptable. Indycar's have never been ultra-high revving and in turbo configurations there weren't complaints about the sound. 



#3 scolbourne

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 12:18

V12 Ferrari

 

 

IZOD Indycar 2012 (sorry this does not sound any better than the current F1 cars to me and I was at the Melbourne race)

 

 

Top fuel dragster (nitromethane)

 

 

 

So there you have it. We need to run the F1 cars on nitro !!!



#4 MatsNorway

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 14:48

The easiest fix is to run alchol. It allready has a green image for some reason.

 

If so you only need a new fuel tank limit and new fuel flow limit.

 

The other more vague options are higher fuel flow limit and more fuel in the tank. hp -> sometimes alot of noise ala. Top Fuel.

 

My favorite would be to relax the stroke and bore rules and make the fuel flow flat.. But it would not likely be a big difference in sound volume. only tone and what revs they would get the power at.

 

In my lala world they would have been driving a straight five!  Best. Sound. Ever!


Edited by MatsNorway, 17 March 2014 - 14:50.


#5 7MGTEsup

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 14:53

So there you have it. We need to run the F1 cars on nitro !!!

 

Some how I don't think they would get far on 100kg of nitro as it has a stoichometric combustion value of 1.7:1


Edited by 7MGTEsup, 17 March 2014 - 14:57.


#6 betafan

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 18:50

They can just put an amplifier in the exhausts, the noise needs more ... bass, it should be deeper. Ferrari's road car division are specialists in exhausts ;) They can design a spec amplifier for all the teams.



#7 Greg Locock

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 21:23

By its nature an efficient turbo absorbs the firing order pulses produced by the engine. For a production car the exhaust typically needs very little low frequency attenuation. Personally I think that the noise is just one of those random talking points rather than a serious issue.

 

If they want more LF noise they'll have to retune the turbos and lose some efficiency.



#8 gruntguru

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Posted 18 March 2014 - 04:55

Fit copper tailpipes.



#9 Wuzak

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Posted 18 March 2014 - 08:41

Sound better or sound louder? They are not necessarily the same thing.

 

For me, the Ferrari was the sweetest sounding engine of the three. And quite spooky under braking - as the only sound you hear is the turbine like howl of the MGUs.

 

The Mercedes sounded deeper, but more gruff to my ears. 

 

The Renault was a little quieter, not quite as sweet as the Ferrari. They also still have major mapping issues, with exits from slow speed corners or running at slow speeds sounding like the car is bunny-hopping.

 

The major problem is that just as the Ferrari was starting to howl, the driver would change up gear and it would be back to a much flatter note. The solution to that would be to move the constant fuel flow zone further up the rev range - to about 13.5-14k. Then they would stay in the howling zone longer.

 

The quiter sound has its benefits too - you can hear the tyres squeal when the car changes direction, and not just when there is a lockup. You can hear the car bottoming.



#10 scolbourne

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 04:00

In the short term , the easiest thing to do would be to remove the flow limit restrictions (or greatly increase it) while keeping the total fuel usage limit.

This would be a quick cheap solution , although possibly unfair to some teams who have designed their engines around it.



#11 MatsNorway

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 15:08

They could easily bump the total fuel and fuel flow a bit.. Its not like everyone is talking about them being too powerful and dangerous.

 

The more complex solution who could keep them at current pace is to do the above mentioned and to deny the engines becoming too efficient by forcing them smaller in capasity. As the BRM V16 from 1952? proved. Engine size alone is irrelevant for the sound it produces.

 

The sound of an engine 0.1L smaller than current engines and only slightly bigger in volume than a Hayabusa engine: https://www.youtube....etailpage#t=112

 

Gives me goosebumps when it goes past. :)


Edited by MatsNorway, 19 March 2014 - 15:33.


#12 xflow7

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 17:29

I don't see the the fuel flow rate increasing at all because more fuel would mean more heat rejection and we know that cooling capacity is already marginal for most teams.  For a similar reason, I don't think the revs will go up much at all either.



#13 alexbiker

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 23:09

Part of the problem is the TV sound mix - the ambient mics are picking up the crowd and the PA more than the cars - I'm willing to be they're still pretty loud.



#14 Wuzak

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 01:32

Part of the problem is the TV sound mix - the ambient mics are picking up the crowd and the PA more than the cars - I'm willing to be they're still pretty loud.

 

No, they are not.

 

I was able to go the whole race without any hearing protection. Never done that before.

 

They were loud enough that I couldn't hear the P/A when a car went past, but had no trouble otherwise. Could use normal ear plugs to hear the commentary on radio.

 

The V8Supercars are louder. And they are restricted to 100dB.



#15 desmo

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 02:29

Is having to wear hearing protection to avoid injury a bad thing?  There are a lot of subjective qualitative sound metrics that can't be quantified in db. Like most of them.

 

Just as a thought experiment: if a new racing exhaust design came along that was both legal in every way and unambiguously faster and more efficient than the status quo--but also one that a consensus of people thought sounded unpleasant or worse--should that design be banned for that reason alone before the other makers began using it and the unpleasant "noise" became the sound of racing? Should it be allowed? Should it be banned citing other reasons?    



#16 Magoo

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 09:20

In 2000 the Indy Racing League changed from 90 to 180 degree cranks in their NA V8s for no other reason than to change the exhaust sound, which folks found loud and obnoxious. 

 

 

As I see it, since the whole point of auto racing is to place asses in seats, exhaust sound is an issue to whatever extent the audience determines it to be so. The trick is in knowing what the fans really want. 



#17 saudoso

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 15:06

F1 has grown into a racing series that surpasses any others viewing numbers by powers of ten.

 

Why is that? Why so many people keep spending hundreds of pounds/euros/dollars to see a turn and a little stretch of straight with even more expensive access to the cars and no access at all to the drivers? Most of them not even seeing a passing maneuver for the whole race?

 

Why the fan base kept enduring years of dominance by single team/drivers?

 

Is it because of carbon brakes? Composite cockpits? First class aero? The EBD?

 

I've been watching it for 35+years, too young to remember the first time on track. I do remember very well the first time as of young adult: Turbo era and I could hear FP1 going on from the bus a while before I got to the track.

 

For me it is a very important part of the show. I'll probably go to Abu Dhabi with some pit walk package this year. I'll be there anyway and never been to a race abroad.

 

 I'd never endure the rain and baking sun of the M stand at Interlagos for the show they are putting right now.


Edited by saudoso, 20 March 2014 - 15:07.


#18 saudoso

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 19:36

In 2000 the Indy Racing League changed from 90 to 180 degree cranks in their NA V8s for no other reason than to change the exhaust sound, which folks found loud and obnoxious. 

 

 

As I see it, since the whole point of auto racing is to place asses in seats, exhaust sound is an issue to whatever extent the audience determines it to be so. The trick is in knowing what the fans really want. 

That was small oval track almost all season, right? I can imagine it getting unconfortable. It's not F1's case.



#19 Nemo1965

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 09:45

If I were Mercedes, and if I was Toto Wolff especially, I would kick, scream, and yell if even the suggestion of making the engines louder was uttered. What is he thinking? It looks like they have a dominant car. ANYTHING that can threaten that - like measures to make the engines sound different - is going to be detrimental to their performance.

 

Not a technical point, however, I think worth making. 



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#20 chipmcdonald

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 11:16

You can't compare an Indycar - it's what, 3.5l?  And less efficient, so more of that is being converted to sound.  And before someone starts - no, efficiency isn't "the future" when a turbine is going to give you the best efficiency from combustion.

 

Take the mufflers... I mean, the turbos off, make Mateschitz give the engine software guys free Redbull for a week,  run just the IC engines with no fuel flow limit, and allow refueling.

 

 

It still won't sound as impressive as what we had before, but at least the engine would be on the limit, the drivers would be allowed to push to the limit, and it would be more like F1 than what we have now.  I'd rather have the sound match the IC engine and braking and only have 650 (or less) HP than "this" deliberately obfuscated "formula".

 

Or maybe the cars should be outfitted with whistles?  P.A. speakers blaring the drivers names?  I know - $200,000 hand crafted Iconel tubas on the exhausts!

 

 

/ you can't turn the energy coming out of the exhaust into more than what is there.   I'm not a rocket scientist, but I didn't have to be to "predict" the cars this year would be a lot quieter with less displacement/power+more efficiency.  You can't get around that.  You can increase the volume at the expensive of bandwidth, literally put a horn on the exhaust - you'd lose engine power, and make the cars shrill (probably easiest to do by taking advantage of human hearing's sensitivity between 1k-2k)...

 

... but it is never going to sound as impressive as a larger engine putting out more power at a higher rpm.   And never before has the cars been made louder for the sake of being louder.  Just take the turbo off and remove energy restrictions.


Edited by chipmcdonald, 23 March 2014 - 11:16.


#21 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 14:24

You can't compare an Indycar - it's what, 3.5l?  And less efficient, so more of that is being converted to sound.  And before someone starts - no, efficiency isn't "the future" when a turbine is going to give you the best efficiency from combustion.

 

 

 

2.2 V6, about 12,500rpm? They do sound a lot better than F1. I don't know if it's the extra revs or the microphones(the latter can't be underestimated) but you don't struggle to hear them. But even then they sound a lot better in person than on TV. 



#22 chipmcdonald

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 15:51

Microphones: yes and no.
 
If the cars were racing in an anechoic chamber (a room designed to not reflect any sound at all), then you could merely position the mics closer, or simply crank the gain.  You would then have "louder", but it doesn't work that way.
 
Effectively speaking, you're not micing just the cars, you're also micing the environment they're in.
 
The point of my ranting is that it's not just the impressiveness from the sheer volume, but the perception of that volume from a distance due to reverberant effects. 
 
If they merely turn up the gain, then they will have to limit the volume when the cars are actually close.  This will make the cars seem "louder" theoretically, BUT, that effectively is akin to "turning up the volume" before and after the car arrives at the mic.
 
What that means is that the listener will hear the reverberant field - the echoing - of the cars more.  The problem with this is psychoacoustics.  Humans are actually very good at deciding, based on sound, how "loud" something is based on the way the reverberation sounds.  Humans will hear even more crowd noise, the acoustic drop off of the sound relative to the reverberation.  A number of things that will ultimately tell the listener "this isn't actually a loud thing relative to it's environment".
 
So why don't they move the mics closer? 
 
Then you have to turn the mics down.  The problem here would be that while you get less environment cues that "this isn't actually loud", you instead get a peaky "event".  Not much sound, not much sound, LOUD SOUND not much sound, etc..  
 
This is the phenomena that makes amateur recordings sound cooler than the FOM feed. 
 
Two problems:
 
1) FOM/broadcasters will not like it, because when you "turn it down" so that you can duck/put the voice over on it, you end up with a sound that is basically ON/OFF.  This becomes "annoying" from a "producer" point of view, the announcer is having to battle LOUD interrUPTIONS.
 
2) It would have been cool prior to this year.  The problem is in the nature of the volume between "a car approaching/leaving".   Because the cars are actually relatively quiet, the length of time you actually have from an audio standpoint between when you hear the car approach/car in front of you is much shorter (you can note this in the 2013 2014 comparison video).   Humans will still say "that's actually not that loud" because of how short the length of time there is for the sound to ramp up (note how a jet aircraft can be heard approaching long before it is over head).
 
So no - you can't move the mics to "fix" the broadcast sound to make them sound "louder".  Technically - from a broadcast standpoint they're just as "loud".   It also doesn't fix the problem of the sounds not matching the throttle, or the limited rev range.
 
They could try adding some harmonic distortion, that is also happening with amateur recordings.  Which theoretically would give the impression of something overloading, either the mic or the preamps.... but that would almost be as silly as amplifying the cars.  You may as well just have some guy on a keyboard playing back samples of V10s and 12s from past years.  Or maybe that kid that does the "F1 Car Sound Impressions".
 
 
 
/ did a few years as a recording engineer in a studio 
//"Golden Ears" rating at http://www.goldenears.phillips.com...  share_page_00_l4.jpg

 

..... try it for yourself...


Edited by chipmcdonald, 23 March 2014 - 15:52.


#23 MatsNorway

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 16:11

Nothing will happen this season. Im quite certain. Might as well start talking about the future solution.



#24 chipmcdonald

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 06:30

Nothing will happen this season. Im quite certain. Might as well start talking about the future solution.

 

 

There won't be a "future" solution if they don't think it's worthwhile to do something immediately.   Watching cars save gas is boring, trying to figure out what's going on when the sound doesn't match the throttle is ridiculous, and what's left over - squeaking tires and vacuum cleaners? 

 

They can drop the fuel restrictions this weekend, pull the turbos and electric off, bring in the refueling rigs from mothballs this weekend.  If F1 engineering can't make an "outdated" IC engine run with a few days notice, that's not much "engineering".  15,000 rpm and 6 straight pipes, it will sound fine and we'll again KNOW when a driver lifts or puts his foot down.  I'm not interested in listening to what an algorithm has decided in the braking zone or under accelleration.  Of course, that is why you can hear them a little bit when the announcers aren't gabbing.

 

*That* would be an interesting engineering technical challenge: which team handles that the best?  "Oh, that's a surprise, we can't do that, we need more warning", etc. etc...  T"We didn't design the PU with that in mind, that's absurd", "this is not fair, we had an advantage and now we don't"... blah blah. 

 

Can't do it?  Run last year's car.

 

The "best" engineers?   It was engineers that screwed up F1 with these rules, let them fix it, NOW.



#25 Catalina Park

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 07:04

What did Fangio's Maserati sound like when he was flinging it down the hill at Rouen?
Did the TV audience care about noise when the 4 cyl Cooper Climax defeated the Ferrari V6?

Edited by Catalina Park, 25 March 2014 - 07:04.


#26 Wuzak

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 07:38

There won't be a "future" solution if they don't think it's worthwhile to do something immediately.   Watching cars save gas is boring, trying to figure out what's going on when the sound doesn't match the throttle is ridiculous, and what's left over - squeaking tires and vacuum cleaners? 

 

They can drop the fuel restrictions this weekend, pull the turbos and electric off, bring in the refueling rigs from mothballs this weekend.  If F1 engineering can't make an "outdated" IC engine run with a few days notice, that's not much "engineering".  15,000 rpm and 6 straight pipes, it will sound fine and we'll again KNOW when a driver lifts or puts his foot down.  I'm not interested in listening to what an algorithm has decided in the braking zone or under accelleration.  Of course, that is why you can hear them a little bit when the announcers aren't gabbing.

 

*That* would be an interesting engineering technical challenge: which team handles that the best?  "Oh, that's a surprise, we can't do that, we need more warning", etc. etc...  T"We didn't design the PU with that in mind, that's absurd", "this is not fair, we had an advantage and now we don't"... blah blah. 

 

Can't do it?  Run last year's car.

 

The "best" engineers?   It was engineers that screwed up F1 with these rules, let them fix it, NOW.

 

Understand this - they are not saving fuel any more than they were last year.

 

Certainly no more than in the last turbo era.

 

And Australia is the second highest consumption track. There will be some, if not many, tracks where no fuel saving is required whatsoever.

 

What may have be perceived as fuel saving could well have been protecting the engine from the durability standpoint. 



#27 Wuzak

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 07:39

Oh, and Renault and Mercedes-Benze DO NOT want to run the V8s anymore. If there was no engine change it is likely they would leave, either by now or in the near future.



#28 chipmcdonald

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 16:47

Understand this - they are not saving fuel any more than they were last year.

 

Certainly no more than in the last turbo era.

 

And Australia is the second highest consumption track. There will be some, if not many, tracks where no fuel saving is required whatsoever.

 

What may have be perceived as fuel saving could well have been protecting the engine from the durability standpoint. 

 

 

 Not saving anymore fuel?  Really?  I guess people saying things like

 

"just getting the car to the end with fuel will be difficult this year",

"You cannot drive most of the grand prix at 90 per cent as before", 

"“I don’t think you’ll hear much about drivers having to save their tyres this year but we might hear a lot about having to save fuel", 

"the fuel factor will be greatly exaggerated in 2014",

"At most of the races we anticipate will be fuel capacity limited, so we will have to save fuel during the race. That will mean a different driving style, where you are compromising lap time at certain points to save fuel."......

 

 

 All of these people just don't understand, right?

 

 

 


 

 
 


 

Edited by chipmcdonald, 25 March 2014 - 16:48.


#29 gruntguru

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 22:32

If this really is a problem the fix is easy - drop the 100 kg race limit. The 100 kg/hr rate limit will keep the power level sane and encourage fuel-efficient design.


Edited by gruntguru, 25 March 2014 - 22:32.


#30 carlt

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 12:02

Fit copper tailpipes.

I think you need to send this proposal to the new 'Think Tank' that has been set up to increase the F1 noise -

Might save a few million $ - but then again they will probably dismiss the idea simply because it doesn't cost X million $ -


Edited by carlt, 08 April 2014 - 12:02.


#31 carlt

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Posted 08 April 2014 - 12:05

 

 Not saving anymore fuel?  Really?  I guess people saying things like

 

"just getting the car to the end with fuel will be difficult this year",

"You cannot drive most of the grand prix at 90 per cent as before", 

"“I don’t think you’ll hear much about drivers having to save their tyres this year but we might hear a lot about having to save fuel", 

"the fuel factor will be greatly exaggerated in 2014",

"At most of the races we anticipate will be fuel capacity limited, so we will have to save fuel during the race. That will mean a different driving style, where you are compromising lap time at certain points to save fuel."......

 

 

 All of these people just don't understand, right?

 

 

 


 

 
 


 

 

Obviously not



#32 J. Edlund

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Posted 16 May 2014 - 21:40

If this really is a problem the fix is easy - drop the 100 kg race limit. The 100 kg/hr rate limit will keep the power level sane and encourage fuel-efficient design.

 

If the 100 kg race limit is dropped the cars have to be equipped with larger fuel tanks, which will require some major redesign work. It will also increase the average output of the engines which means it will affect engine cooling and possibly engine and transmission life. I can't see it done during the season, all teams won't agree with the regulation change required anyway.

 

Even with the race limit dropped, it will not prevent "fuel saving" during races. The amount of fuel saving this season is not really any more significant than it has been in previous season. Filling the car with lots and lots of fuel, adding weight to the car is simply not a good idea when you want to make it to the finish line as fast as possible.



#33 Wuzak

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Posted 17 May 2014 - 00:08

Even with the race limit dropped, it will not prevent "fuel saving" during races. The amount of fuel saving this season is not really any more significant than it has been in previous season. Filling the car with lots and lots of fuel, adding weight to the car is simply not a good idea when you want to make it to the finish line as fast as possible.

 

In the last few races it seems they haven't been using the 100kg allocation. Particularly Williams.

 

I wonder if they added some extra downforce, more in line with last year's cars, and were able to do faster lap times if they would have more issues with the fuel limit.



#34 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 17 May 2014 - 01:03

No, they are not.

 

I was able to go the whole race without any hearing protection. Never done that before.

 

They were loud enough that I couldn't hear the P/A when a car went past, but had no trouble otherwise. Could use normal ear plugs to hear the commentary on radio.

 

The V8Supercars are louder. And they are restricted to 100dB.

Supercars are 95DB and have been for years. And they sound fairy puny anyway. But 10-1 compression  on  the slower burning ethanol fuel will never sound very.  sharp. The E85 though is a good fuel, you just have to use a lot more of it!

 

F1 can start 'tipping the can' 10% nitro that will sharpen up the sound. Though probably for about  half a race! Straight nitro? From what I gather even fuel cars do not use it straight but in a high volume mixed with methanol.

 

A turbo/hybrid will always sound [and be] weak  whatever the numbers. That is why they are not having a tyre problem these days. Girly power does not overpower the tyres like was happening last year.



#35 Wuzak

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Posted 17 May 2014 - 03:10

A turbo/hybrid will always sound [and be] weak  whatever the numbers. That is why they are not having a tyre problem these days. Girly power does not overpower the tyres like was happening last year.

 

They actually seem to have trouble with tyres this year. Less downforce, a less grippy tyre range (a step or two harder than last year) and conservative tyre choice and more power.

 

While the peak output of the 2014 engines is less than 2013's (with KERS) there is more power everywhere else.



#36 gruntguru

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Posted 18 May 2014 - 23:45

And a shed-load more torque - hang on -  shouldn't they be faster this year?



#37 Wuzak

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 08:52

And a shed-load more torque - hang on -  shouldn't they be faster this year?

 

Harder tyres, more conservative tyre choices and around 15% less downforce has nixed that!

 

Wonder if they returned to flat bottomed cars if they could recover a lot of that lost downforce without too much drag penalty.



#38 gruntguru

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 23:14

By all accounts the cars have to be "driven" around corners this year and a bunch of extra downforce might be a backward step in that regard.



#39 Wuzak

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Posted 20 May 2014 - 09:48

True.

 

It still may be the case, even if they have the downforce of last year, because of the fatter torque curve,


Edited by Wuzak, 20 May 2014 - 09:50.


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#40 gruntguru

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 01:29

A fatter torque curve makes a car easier to drive around corners although the NA V8s had a "flatter" torque curve at least in the normal operating band.

 

The comment I heard was that the 2013 cars could be driven through many corners "flat out" whereas the current cars need more pedalling to stay within the grip envelope.