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Sound on the 201 - some questions...

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aramand
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Hi,

 

Bought a sound decoder yesterday and it arrived this morning (thanks Gareth and all at ModelShopBelfast :-bd) but now have more questions :

 

1. I had heard before that there was an issue with the standard speaker on the 201 (only really for the horn) but looking for advice on how easy it is to swap this out for a better speaker. I havent looked in detail but I'm guessing the whole body needs to come off as no easy access to the speaker as with the decoder.

 

2. My Hornby Select has finally started to show its limitations. Apart from turning on the normal running lights I appear to have lost all control over the main headlights and the cab lights :(( I'm guessing you need a controller which can control more than 9 functions as apart from F0 (lights) everything else is a sound function. If anyone has the full list of functions for these sound decoders it would also help.

 

Only got to run it literally for 5 mins but sounds great other than the horn which appears a bit distorted, will get to play a bit more this evening hopefully.

 

Thanks,

Declan.

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Might be good if people could post what system they are using and any good/bad points etc. Would be good if you can include the actual model as most of the vendors seem to have multiple versions from entry to pro versions.

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I've a lenz system 100. I find it very easy to use, nice and easy, and also very powerful and flexible.

I plan on plugging it into a PC for computer controlling the layout and route setting in time...

 

As one of the first 'standard' systems, I find it works great with all decoders and gives lovely smooth running.

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If I was to get Bachmann dynamis, would the loco be fully functional?

Whatever you do don't get the dynamis,as I have one in a box which keeps showing a short even though

There in none.spend your money wisely and go for the more expensive unit-powercab-prodigy-etc.

I have read about a lot of problems with the dynamis and Anthony will tell you the same.

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Hi,

 

Bought a sound decoder yesterday and it arrived this morning (thanks Gareth and all at ModelShopBelfast :-bd) but now have more questions :

 

1. I had heard before that there was an issue with the standard speaker on the 201 (only really for the horn) but looking for advice on how easy it is to swap this out for a better speaker. I havent looked in detail but I'm guessing the whole body needs to come off as no easy access to the speaker as with the decoder.

 

2. My Hornby Select has finally started to show its limitations. Apart from turning on the normal running lights I appear to have lost all control over the main headlights and the cab lights :(( I'm guessing you need a controller which can control more than 9 functions as apart from F0 (lights) everything else is a sound function. If anyone has the full list of functions for these sound decoders it would also help.

 

Only got to run it literally for 5 mins but sounds great other than the horn which appears a bit distorted, will get to play a bit more this evening hopefully.

 

Thanks,

Declan.

If you go to my workbench at the start and scroll down

You will see my 201 with the speaker installed.I got the

Speaker form DCC supplies and I think it's bass enhanced

or bass reflex- one or the other.The speaker that comes

with the 201 is bog standard and you need to remove the

Speaker and plastic cradle that it lies in.

The two wires from the speaker need to be desoldered from

The main board,and I will check the dimensions later as space

is tight because of the main board and gear tower.

All you have to do is to solder the speaker wires back onto the

main board when you get your new speaker.Some double sided

Tape or similar will hold the speaker in place.

I

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If you go to my workbench at the start and scroll down

You will see my 201 with the speaker installed.I got the

Speaker form DCC supplies and I think it's bass enhanced

or bass reflex- one or the other.The speaker that comes

with the 201 is bog standard and you need to remove the

Speaker and plastic cradle that it lies in.

The two wires from the speaker need to be desoldered from

The main board,and I will check the dimensions later as space

is tight because of the main board and gear tower.

All you have to do is to solder the speaker wires back onto the

main board when you get your new speaker.Some double sided

Tape or similar will hold the speaker in place.

I

 

Thanks, will have a look at maybe getting the body off and seeing how easy it is to access..

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Is there any relatively cheap (£150 or lower) unit that could carry out all the functions?

 

The Gaugemaster Prodigy Express is available for £124 from Hattons.

http://www.ehattons.com/stocklist/45/8/73/0/Gaugemaster_Controls_Any_or_multiple_scales_DCC_control_equipment_and_points_decoders/prodlist.aspx

 

Also the NCE powercab can be got for £131.

http://www.bromsgrovemodels.co.uk/pd-670066615.htm?categoryId=89

 

I went for Gaugemaster but bought the Advance 2, and I would highly recommend it if your budget can stretch the extra few quid. I was thinking about the Powercab

myself but was turned off it by the fact you can only have 2 locos in the recall stack. A problem they were going to address but not sure if they have done it yet.

Anthony is a Powercab user and he speaks highly of it, so maybe he can give more info.

 

A word of warning about using the Selecty with sound decoders! I had three 141/181 chips which malfunctioned on me and I have an idea it was something to do with the Select.

Search the Web for reports of Select problems, the list is frightening...

Likewise with the Dynamis, the general opinion is to steer clear of "Train Set" DCC controllers and go for a dedicated DCC manufacturer's system.

Edited by irishthump
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I assume it is possible on all of the main vendors NCE, Gaugemaster, Lenz etc to upgrade the firmware on the controller. I know Hornby only allow it on the Elite and for the Select to need to actually send it back to hornby themselves.

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I assume it is possible on all of the main vendors NCE, Gaugemaster, Lenz etc to upgrade the firmware on the controller. I know Hornby only allow it on the Elite and for the Select to need to actually send it back to hornby themselves.

 

You will find that ther systems don't need to have their firmware updated because it works properly!

That just proves what they say about DCC systems made by train set manufacturers.

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You will find that ther systems don't need to have their firmware updated because it works properly!

That just proves what they say about DCC systems made by train set manufacturers.

 

:D

 

I guess more research needed...the Powercab looks good I think but limited to 1.5A (which is only slightly better than the Select) and the booster is an extra £105. That being said I dont think I've ever had power problems with the select which is only rated at 1A and I've run 4 locos at a time so who knows - confused :confused:

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:D

 

I guess more research needed...the Powercab looks good I think but limited to 1.5A (which is only slightly better than the Select) and the booster is an extra £105. That being said I dont think I've ever had power problems with the select which is only rated at 1A and I've run 4 locos at a time so who knows - confused :confused:

 

Take your time and get as much info as possible, I was glad I did!

 

BTW, the Prodigy Advance has 3A which was another reason I went for it.

 

As for running multiple locos - modern locos draw less power so this is'nt surprising. But you will see problems trying to run several sound equipped locos. All depends on your plans for the future, but 1.5A is a bit limiting IMHO.

 

One thing is fo sure, get rid of the Select!

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Take your time and get as much info as possible, I was glad I did!

 

BTW, the Prodigy Advance has 3A which was another reason I went for it.

 

As for running multiple locos - modern locos draw less power so this is'nt surprising. But you will see problems trying to run several sound equipped locos. All depends on your plans for the future, but 1.5A is a bit limiting IMHO.

 

One thing is fo sure, get rid of the Select!

 

Btw, what's loco recall?

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It's when the controller 'remembers' the details and settings of the last bunch of locos you ran.

 

What he said!

 

The Powercab only has a recall of 2 locos. Now I'm not 100% sure, but I think that means when you run 2 locos and type in the address of a 3rd one, one of the other 2 gets dropped from the stack and stops running.

Can anyone with a Powercab confirm this?

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What he said!

 

The Powercab only has a recall of 2 locos. Now I'm not 100% sure, but I think that means when you run 2 locos and type in the address of a 3rd one, one of the other 2 gets dropped from the stack and stops running.

Can anyone with a Powercab confirm this?

Anthony has a powercab,I am sure he will let you know soon.

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What he said!

 

The Powercab only has a recall of 2 locos. Now I'm not 100% sure, but I think that means when you run 2 locos and type in the address of a 3rd one, one of the other 2 gets dropped from the stack and stops running.

Can anyone with a Powercab confirm this?

 

I've never used the Powercab but I dont think the loco will stop running once it falls out of the recall list - otherwise you would effectively only be able to run 2 locos at a time which is not the case I'm pretty certain. The recall function as I understand it is just a way of quickly switching control between 2 locos and the controller retains the throttle settings etc between the switches.

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The Gaugemaster Prodigy Express is available for £124 from Hattons.

http://www.ehattons.com/stocklist/45/8/73/0/Gaugemaster_Controls_Any_or_multiple_scales_DCC_control_equipment_and_points_decoders/prodlist.aspx

 

Also the NCE powercab can be got for £131.

http://www.bromsgrovemodels.co.uk/pd-670066615.htm?categoryId=89

 

I went for Gaugemaster but bought the Advance 2, and I would highly recommend it if your budget can stretch the extra few quid. I was thinking about the Powercab

myself but was turned off it by the fact you can only have 2 locos in the recall stack. A problem they were going to address but not sure if they have done it yet.

Anthony is a Powercab user and he speaks highly of it, so maybe he can give more info.

 

A word of warning about using the Selecty with sound decoders! I had three 141/181 chips which malfunctioned on me and I have an idea it was something to do with the Select.

Search the Web for reports of Select problems, the list is frightening...

Likewise with the Dynamis, the general opinion is to steer clear of "Train Set" DCC controllers and go for a dedicated DCC manufacturer's system.

 

The Digitrax Zypher is another option 2.5Amp consul style controller with read back programmer at £140 in MG Sharp fully compatible with their other systems.

 

I went for the slightly Empire Builder 1 as it ws in 2000 still running with the original firmware whatever that is in 2012.

 

Going back to stack recall its just a way of bringing up the most recently used loco addresses and nothing to do with the number of locos you can have running.

 

Digitrax claim that you can run up to 20 locos with the Zypher and the system can support 20 Throttles a lot in any language.

 

John

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Might be good if people could post what system they are using and any good/bad points etc. Would be good if you can include the actual model as most of the vendors seem to have multiple versions from entry to pro versions.

 

 

The subject has been covered loads of time on this and the old board and all over the internet as I posted somewhere else on this board (can't remember where) it comes down to what you like everyone will say there system is best /Boskonay likes lenz / Enniscorthyman likes the Prodigy and bought it because some of his friends had it / I like the Power Cab the only one thing we have in common is we all started with a DCC starter set hornby/bachmann and our advice is buy a specialised DCC system as to what it all comes down to you what you like. Some of the systems may have slight differences in the amount of functions they can do but they all do in a round about way the same thing.

 

I personally don't like the prodigy as I think it looks cheap in the way its finished it also a MRC just dressed up in a different case.

The Lenz I don't like the display and the way the control buttons are layed out.

The power cab is what I went for as it ticked all the boxes I wanted I also added the NCE SB3a which took the power cab up to 5amp and also gives me 6 recalls.

 

Now my system won't suite Boskonay or Enniscorthyman and they will find faults with the NEC power cab that won't suit them.

 

As I have said before we can all tell you what we think but we will all tell you that ours is the best and at the end of the day it will all come down to what size of layout you have how many trains you want to run and most of all what you like.

 

Do what I did and call Fiona at DCC Supplies she won't push any one system on to you as she sells most of them but she will tell you the pros and cons between them

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The subject has been covered loads of time on this and the old board and all over the internet as I posted somewhere else on this board (can't remember where) it comes down to what you like everyone will say there system is best /Boskonay likes lenz / Enniscorthyman likes the Prodigy and bought it because some of his friends had it / I like the Power Cab the only one thing we have in common is we all started with a DCC starter set hornby/bachmann and our advice is buy a specialised DCC system as to what it all comes down to you what you like. Some of the systems may have slight differences in the amount of functions they can do but they all do in a round about way the same thing.

 

I personally don't like the prodigy as I think it looks cheap in the way its finished it also a MRC just dressed up in a different case.

The Lenz I don't like the display and the way the control buttons are layed out.

The power cab is what I went for as it ticked all the boxes I wanted I also added the NCE SB3a which took the power cab up to 5amp and also gives me 6 recalls.

 

Now my system won't suite Boskonay or Enniscorthyman and they will find faults with the NEC power cab that won't suit them.

 

As I have said before we can all tell you what we think but we will all tell you that ours is the best and at the end of the day it will all come down to what size of layout you have how many trains you want to run and most of all what you like.

 

Do what I did and call Fiona at DCC Supplies she won't push any one system on to you as she sells most of them but she will tell you the pros and cons between them

 

Cheers Anto. I probably won't be running that many trains at once anyway, so I'm probably going to go for the prodigy express.

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Is there any relatively cheap (£150 or lower) unit that could carry out all the functions?

 

 

Answered this question the other day for you how many times do you need to ask (going round in circles me thinks you are)

 

Here is a link in case you can not remember the 3rd and 4th post on the page

 

http://irishrailwaymodeller.com/showthread.php/270-Converting-to-DCC/page2

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:D

 

I guess more research needed...the Powercab looks good I think but limited to 1.5A (which is only slightly better than the Select) and the booster is an extra £105. That being said I dont think I've ever had power problems with the select which is only rated at 1A and I've run 4 locos at a time so who knows - confused :confused:

 

 

 

Let me put the power cab 1.5 amp issue to bed for you. Before I got the SB3a add on and when I had the old layout in my attic I did a test to see how many 141/181's I could run with the basic power cab putting out 1.5 amps the total I was able to run was 14. 7 on the up line and 7 on the down.

 

The layout I have at the minute is massive compared to the last one and I have got the SB3a upgrade and I have yet had the need to run 14 locos at any one time.

So I think that 1.5 amps should be more than enough for you.

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I've never used the Powercab but I dont think the loco will stop running once it falls out of the recall list - otherwise you would effectively only be able to run 2 locos at a time which is not the case I'm pretty certain. The recall function as I understand it is just a way of quickly switching control between 2 locos and the controller retains the throttle settings etc between the switches.

 

 

Correct

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