If ...

... and only if I was to change to DCC what should I buy?
I note the folks hereabouts appear to rate Lentz quite highly. ZTC is
expensive and IIUC not fully compliant with the standards such as they are. But what about the recent Guagemaster offering - I do try to buy British as much as possible.
Also what would I need?
Initially I would be looking to "DCC" a 009 layout, total track is around 60' (final bits still need to be laid so it's not an exact figure) and of that the longest run on the "mainline" is around 36' from buffer stops at one end and around a reversing loop at the other. The remaining trackwork consists of spurs from the "mainline" (quarry workings/interchanges/factory yards/small shed/sidings etc).
I can't see that I'd want to run more than two or three engines at once (single train double or possibly triple headed on very rare occassions) out of a total proposed stud of 6 to 8 engines.
If the experiment is sucessful I'd then (at a later stage) want to incorporate the 00 part of my layout (currently DC) - around 200' of track, the longest runs being two 'ovals' each of around 45', lots of sidings and a reasonably large engine shed. Anticipated that around 20 - 30 engines could be stabled or run on the layout at any one time.
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All the best,

Chris Wilson
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If I were in your position, I'd wait until the Bachmann Dynamis is released and read up on reviews and feedback about it before making any decision. It looks like a good system, and has some advances over the 'legacy' systems by the likes of Lenz, Digitrax, etc (I consider the Gaugemaster system to be legacy too...)
But, this is, of course, just in my humble onion...
Ian J.

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Ian J. wrote:

At the end of the day the main differences between the systems available are the features of the controllers/throttles and the networking capabilities they have. So look at the different systems see what best meets your needs.
The Dynamis system does not seem to be that great a leap forward as all the functionality can be done by existing systems. The user interface looks like it might be easier to use which is probably its best selling point.
Chris
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...
Cheers to you both, the Bachmann one does appear as though it may turn out a little less expensive.
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All the best,

Chris Wilson
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"Chris Wilson" wrote

Gaugemaster's Prodigy is not British - it's produced by Model Rectifier Corporation (MRC) in the USA. Some people seem to rate ZTC, but others I've heard have regretted buying it.
I use a Lenz Compact with an add wireless controller from ESU and am impressed, but I wouldn't use this if I wanted to control points - I'd go for the higher spec Set 100.
I think as Ian J suggests, it may be worth waiting to see whether the Bachmann Dynamis delivers all it promises. Whilst it may not be too revolutionary, the promise of wireless control and a very competitive price makes it worth looking at.
Hornby's system seems to want to lock you into their own products and after all the comments I've heard over the past few months (very few of which are favourable) I think I'd give it a very wide berth.
John.
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Against the tide again - Do they 'eck ! and theres been lots of unfair negative spin.
Got round to installing decoders in a couple of shunters and had a few sessions of a few minutes play with my Hornby Elite. Gave a demo to my tot and his school mate of the shunters doing a dance on small oval. Very brave cos first time tried it and these 6 year olds are sometimes a bit critical and always have a short attention span. Shunters going towards each other, then away, one fast one slow, swap speeds, stop one, start it, change speed - everything. Was a doddle, perfect demo, tot wide eyed, lots of wows.
Dual control knobs are excellent, spin the dial and watch them go accelerating to required speed. To anyone waiting for Bachmann system, dont bother, youre wasting months and months (and months...) of playtime.
Cheers, Simon
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"simon" wrote

I've only reported what I've read. Strange though that very few people in the know are commenting favourably or recommending the Hornby system. That must tell you something!
John.
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John Turner wrote:

Some will *always* buy the cheapest product that will get them by and they will overlook any (if any) disadvantages.
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Kevin Martin
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wrote:

If they stick to the one brand, then they'll probably be very happy. It's when you try to mix, e.g., Hornby with a *real* DCC system that the problems become apparent.
MBQ
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By whom though ?
That I'm not in the know ?
CHeers, Simon
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"simon" wrote

I think they're called customers.
John.
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But purchasers of the Hornby Elite or people what say things like "we all know the Elite is low on amps", when it has 4 amps and bachmann one only has 3. Fair critics are fine and wellcomed, but the spuirious story brigade are naughty.
Cheers, Simon
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Fair enough, ZTC appears to expensive and the one time I had a play with it I couldn't see where the added value had been added if you see what I mean.

Plug in will be fine, IIUC, it's possible to have several sockets wired in but perhaps only one or two in use at any one time, as my operating well is only 12'x6' or thereabouts two sockets would suit me fine and as for a wireless system I'd be concerned about reception.

I'm pretty sure that I'd need at least two recievers and whilst the price does look good I'm concerned that by the time I've got all the optional extras - which in reality are not all that optional if you want a fully functioning system the price may skyrocket.

Agreed and already discounted, I've read enough here to decide that. Mind you if they do get their act together by the time I'm ready to purchase and make theirs fully compatable they may score on price.
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Chris Wilson
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Not sure if I've ever seen a fair negative comment - as opposed to a fair negative personal opinion such as dont like the colour - on the Elite, on here.
Not sure I've seen one anywhere else either.
Cheers, Simon
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Don't know the situation in Britain, but if you have a chance to try the NCE Power Cab DCC system, do so. Fully NRMA compliant, 10,000 (how many do Hornby have?) addresses, etc etc. And if you decide DCC IS for you and later on uppgrade to a full PowerPro system for your OO layout, the Power Cab plugs into the cab bus and becomes a normal throttle. So you can use it on both.
What more do you need - well, a decoder for each loco is all (maybe a tranny, dont know if they come with them in the UK).
What more do you want - ah, different question - radio throttle, EB3 power distribution unit, sound decoders (luv to see one of those in a OO9 loco - having said that, probably already is somewhere), auto reversers - great for turntables as well as reversing loops, detectors, auxiliary modules etc etc. Now I know the NCE system isnt British, but it aint Aussie either and I bought one :)
Steve Magee Newcastle NSW Aust
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wrote:

Cheers I've actually seen NCE for sale in the UK, what about power boosters or whatever they're called, presumably I'd need a base station but with that length of track would I need an auxillery power station thingie?
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Chris Wilson
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Hi Chris
No, to get up and running, the NCE system is complete - in both Power Pro and Power Cab iterations. If you get the Power Pro, they even throw in a few decoders as well. :) Maybe you will need a transformer, check with your retailer.
Insofar as the number of addresses is concerned, 'taint the total number, but the number itself. With that number of addresses, basically the number on the side of the loco becomes the decoder number. Glance at said number, enter said number into cab, loco is yours. I originally had an early Lenz system with 100 addresses available, having to remember what each loco/decoder number is was a pita. Now I realise that it is BR practice to have 5 numbers on the loco, but unless you buy Zimo (beautiful, but real money!!!) the 4 digit number gives you ease of use. That limitation (254 addresses) of the Hornby system is my main bone of contention with it. Plus apparently there is a conflict with TCS decoders.
And no, you won't need a power booster, unless you really like to sit and look at LEDs on your equipment rack :) My previous HO layout occupied a 24' x 14' shed, and ran comfortably off the one base station Power pro, though I have installed an EB3 to break the layout up into power districts so that a short in one does not shut down the whole layout. Oh and I added a PTB100 to boost power to the programming track for sound equipped locos. Don't REALLY need a Programming Track these days, but a wise thing to have, and I use Decoder Pro on the PC attached to it to make programming so much easier. At the moment, a programming track is the only way to "read" a decoder.
One other point. If I was buying again, I would still definitely consider the NCE, but I am impressed by the new ESU ECOS system, though that is a tad more expensive - about $500Au more than an NCE radio system is here in Aus.
Hope this helps
Steve Magee Newcastle NSW Aust
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Steve wrote:

We can have 6 digits on the side if you include multiple units although Southern region manages to identify its units by the last 4 digits careful not to overlap. No such luck with locos 87001, 67001, 47001, 37001, 27001 overlap on 4 digits admittedly less likely to overlap than 2 digits but you which which number manufactures are bound to pick for locos they make.
The one good point about the Hornby system is that you can allocate free text as well as an address to a loco, text held on command station. So you could map the full six digit loco number to a 1-255 address, which is probably more easy to use than remembering the last 4 digits and Bachmann are doing the same with their system. 4 digits were all that is required in the US as that is all the digits they use to identify locos with duplicates between different rail roads.

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What a simple idea - like all the best. So ya boo sucks to those with thousands of addresses. Anyway what you going to do about private locos which may or may not have numbers !
Me ? I can use text.
Cheers, Simon
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"simon" wrote

Yawn, was doing that two years ago with my ESU Mobile, and at leats that's totally NMRA compliant.
John.
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