Daytona USA – In My Car

Daytona USA – In My Car

The Real Life Daytona USA Car


It’s 2001, I’m studying Robotics at Swinburne, love playing pinball & arcade games, and working at electronics retailer Dick Smith Electronics…

So it makes sense I converted my Mazda 626 into a real life version of Dayton USA.

Mazda 626 Example Car on horizon close up
Daytona USA - Main GIF

System Design


I continued to build and add-on to the system over time, this mean part was installed under the drivers seat, the control module was mounted next to the steering wheel for quick access, the Public Address (PA) Speaker was mounted under the hood/bonnet, and the eTag (Highway Toll) Device was mounted to the winder, with an external mic hack.

  • 8 Channel Digital Sound Sampler
  • Control Panel
  • eTag Toll Device + External Hack
  • Sound Amp
  • Public Address Speaker + Internal Speaker
  • Sound Sensor (VOX switch)
  • Sound Generator Module
  • Microphone
PLAY VIDEO TO HEAR SOUNDS
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright

8 Channel Digital Sound Sampler


The heart of the system was an 8 Channel Digital Sound Sampler – similar to the devices you hear DJ’s use when they loop a sound, it’s like a digital tape recorder that can store 8 sounds.

I initially took a portable tape recorder to a local arcade and recorded the sounds from a real machine, after a while I was able to obtain cleaner files online of the sound effects form the Daytona USA Arcade Game.

Play the video to hear the game sounds.

  • Please Select a Race Course
  • Please Choose Manual or Automatic Transmission
  • 3… 2… 1… GO GO GO!!!
  • Time Extension
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound module
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound module
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound module

Control Panel


This Control Panel is one of my most favourite control panels ever. It has so many buttons, knobs, switches, and cables!!! I’ll try and list out all the business and reasons for each. I can’t remeber why but the keypad has the weirds number/button layout (1st row left to right, 2nd row right to left…).

Play video above to hear the sounds listed below (red are sound FX).

1: “3… 2… 1… GO GO GO!!!”
2: not used
3: not used
4: “Time Extension”
5: not used
6: “Please Choose Manual Or Automatic Transmission”
7: “Please Select A Race Course”
8: not used
9: “Shall We Play A Game” (from War Games lol)
0: not used
A: Microphone Power
B: Microphone Line
C: Aux Power
D: Extra Sound Switch (On/Off)
E: Microphone Volume
F: Light Indicator
G: Microphone Master + Light (On/Off)
H: Extra Sound Switch (P/F)
I: Data Cable to 8 Ch. Sound Sampler
J: Control for Panel Power
K: Switch for something lol
L: Cable System
M: Master Volume

Daytona USA Switch Layout by Gray Bright
Daytona USA Switch Layout by Gray Bright
Daytona USA Switch Layout by Gray Bright
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Control Keypad GIF
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Control Keypad

Right Side – Control Panel
Microphone controls.

Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Control Keypad

Top Side – Control Panel
Microphone and Aux lines.

Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Control Keypad

Left Side – Control Panel
Master volume and cables.

TIME EXTENSION!!!


As you race in Daytona USA you go under the check-points and are awarded ‘TIME EXTENSION’.

So I rewired my eTag (electronic toll device) and connected it to the system so every-time I drove under a toll point, my car would announce TIME EXTENSION, and I’d floor it to the next check-point (toll booth).

This hack worked by glueing a microphone to the eTag speaker and connecting this to a sound sensitive switch. Each time I went under a toll check-point, the eTag device would beep, that beep would cause the switch to activate, which was a relay connected to the 8 Channel Digital Sound Sampler.

Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright eTag check point device
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright eTag check point device
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright eTag check point device
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound module
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound module
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound module

Amp and Sound Module


This module was initially for the sound amplifier from the 8 Ch. Digital Sampler to the Public Address speaker under the hood/bonnet.

Over time I added more extra functionality to it (and cables). The circuit board inside the clear case is an additional fun sound module.

Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound amp
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound amp
Daytona USA sound FX device for real life car driving game made by Gray Bright - Sound amp

Daytona USA Sound Effects


This is the Mini Disc that I used to make sound FX recordings and then record them into the 8 channel digital recorder.

Daytona USA Mini Disc
Daytona USA Mini Disc and player / recorder
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