Bufferstop wrote: Steam sounds just don't seem to work so well, I've yet to hear one that convinces me that the sound is anything to do with the source of propulsion. Perhaps the answer lies in the sort of sound that would be produced by a 1/76th scale set of cylinders, I don't think it would sound much like the full sized ones.
That doesn't help at all. The problem is two fold. One is insufficient content in the recordings, because there isn't the available memory yet for the very large range of sounds required, and the other - even if all the necessary sounds were available - is insufficient input to the decoder to manage their correct production. To give an example, the very common sight of a half turn or two of wheelslip while moving slowly, skilfully controlled by the driver quickly closing the regulator and slightly re-opening it to check the slip while keeping the train on the move. Models pulling heavy loads actually do this, but the decoder just cannot keep up and supply the accompanying faster beats of the exhausts during the slip. That alone kills it for me, and there's a ton more in the same vein that made up the repertoire of operational steam, that sound decoders get nowhere close to.