Which Controller

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phil.c
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Location: South Wales

Which Controller

Postby phil.c » Sat Feb 11, 2012 5:54 pm

Hi All,
I have'nt been here for quite a while, the last time I called in I posted lots of pictures of my layout, some might remember the pit scene .

I have been building layouts for around forty years, mostly scratch built, buildings loco's points (SMP) etc etc.I have'nt done anything with my layout for about six or more years, but i'm getting that itching back.

I use cab control with two controllers but i'm thinking of going digital. I admit that I now very little about it, so my question is, which one?

I use around six loco's, the room is 18' x 10', I would like to have sound simulation in the loco's if possible and i'm looking for a user friendly system.

Some help/advise would be appreciated :D

Phil
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Flashbang
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Re: Which Controller

Postby Flashbang » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:00 pm

Hi
Without hesitation...NCE PowerCab.

If you want more power and have a larger budget, then the NCE Power Pro etc ..

I use a MRC Prodigy Advanced (Sold in the UK under the Gaugemaster badge) Excellent unit.
[Image << Click the Icon to go to my website
Broken? It was working correctly when I left it.

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Eastern
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Location: Portland, Oregon. USA - originally from East Anglia

Re: Which Controller

Postby Eastern » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:04 pm

Hi Phil - if I remember correctly, you have a very detailed and atmospheric layout - (please post a few reminder pics for those who may have missed it :wink: )
For my 2 pence worth, I started DCC with a Digitrax Zephyr (although some of the techspeak is a little wordy) but have liked the controller as well as the opportunities to expand if needed - my advice is to talk to people (via the web or in real-life!) to get the pros and cons - I have also heard that NCE also have a good system.

This website may also give some other advices from DCC Concepts - website-click here
Good luck and lets se some pics :wink: !
“Sir, Sunday morning, although recurring at regular and well foreseen intervals, always seems to take this railway by surprise.”
William S Gilbert
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phil.c
Posts: 202
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 10:32 am
Location: South Wales

Re: Which Controller

Postby phil.c » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:42 pm

Thanks both, ive had a quick look at the Gaugemaster one, but I read somewhere about downloading stuff to a pc and selecting loco's to operate from the screen....have I got it wrong?

Here's some reminder pics.

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Last edited by phil.c on Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:31 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Lofty

Re: Which Controller

Postby Lofty » Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:02 pm

Some good pictures there Phil, any chance of a snap of the scrap yard behind the engine shed, please.

I too have a NCE Powercab and would highly recommend it.

The Dcc concepts site that has already been posted is a good place to start and get the brain thinking about what exactly you want to do with it. I think unfortunately there is no 'one size fits all' that suits everyones needs.

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Eastern
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Re: Which Controller

Postby Eastern » Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:05 pm

Thanks Phil - :D
“Sir, Sunday morning, although recurring at regular and well foreseen intervals, always seems to take this railway by surprise.”
William S Gilbert
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lennie
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Re: Which Controller

Postby lennie » Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:28 pm

Hi. Phil. Its all about what one is happy with. For instance, is the instruction manual easy to read and to understand the tech speak. Is one satisfied with the layout of controller and how it functions. Now I know there are many out there who just love the NCE unit. Well I hated it, it was on eBay in a week. Then there's the budget, in this the range is wide. £100 to £ 500. Do you want a Desktop, or a Walkabout. I would always suggest go to a good show, see if the major retailers are there. ZTC. Digitrains. DCC Supplies. Etc. You will even get to play. Me, I use a desktop with a walkabout, I find it useful when you are arm isn't long enough Regards. PS. Ignore what DCC Concepts have to say about ZTC. I Think its Unfair of one retailer to knock another, more so when the new owners are trying very hard to get things up to date, one update has already been done and is available.

Lofty

Re: Which Controller

Postby Lofty » Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:38 pm

lofty wrote: any chance of a snap of the scrap yard behind the engine shed, please.

Just realised that you have edited your pics to include one, thanks

phil.c
Posts: 202
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Location: South Wales

Re: Which Controller

Postby phil.c » Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:53 pm

No problem.

Thanks Lennie,

What I want is not to have to look at a screen, I have a guagemaster hand held controller that I can work with one hand and by just sliding a switch I can select forward and reverse, it would crack me up if I had to do this via a screen.

A walkabout would be good but one with a long cable would also work.

I just want to sit down and shunt trucks/goods and also run some trains on the main line, not necessarily at the same time.

lennie
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Re: Which Controller

Postby lennie » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:16 pm

Evening, Phil. I don't think you are going find a controller without a screen of sorts, how will you know what you have programmed into the decoder, or what loco you have selected etc. Perhaps you should then look at the cheaper end of the market, the Hornby Elite would probably suit you and if i am correct,you do not intend to get to involved with DCC, but wish to use its benefits. One thing I would mention The Elite has had a version upgrade I think to V4. Retails at £150 to £160. You could try eBay, but make sure first if you can download any upgrades. Another comment is, you may have seen adverts saying, Run 16 trains at once? Not on your own your not. I find it a task just running 2 on the mainlines, 1 goods, & shunt the yard. Good Luck. Len.

phil.c
Posts: 202
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2009 10:32 am
Location: South Wales

Re: Which Controller

Postby phil.c » Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:12 pm

Hi Lennie,
As for the screen, I don't think I explained thing correctly :roll: I don't mind looking at a screen...on a hand held unit, what I don't want to do is keep referring back to a pc or laptop monitor.
I don't mind paying whatever it takes to get the system that works for me, the Gaugemaster wireless looks interesting, easy to use and quick to set up, I believe it can also handle sound modules which I am also interested in, maybe you could put me in the right direction for those, but they have to sound realistic, I have to admit that I am a perfectionist :) and need a very close sound to the original.
I'm not really interests in running multiple trains, I like to see one or two run on the main line but shunting and slow movement is what I'm really interested in.

Thank you and everone for your help.

Phil

siringe
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Re: Which Controller

Postby siringe » Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:18 pm

Hi.
I have both NCE power cab and a LENZ O1 .The power cab is my choice for eazy control, and a lot cheaper.
Cheers Terry. PS LOVE the layout. :D

red death
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Re: Which Controller

Postby red death » Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:24 pm

OK, for a start I would avoid the Prodigy unless you are happy with a relatively closed system. Ditto the Hornby.

The Powercab is very nice ergonomically.

Personally I think the most flexible systems are Lenz and Digitrax. The Lenz system is starting to look pretty dated and could really do with a new handset. So for me it would be Digitrax.

Cheers, Mike

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poliss
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Re: Which Controller

Postby poliss » Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:30 pm

My preference would be for the wireless Roco/Fleischmann Multimaus Pro + Multizentrale Pro.

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Essex2Visuvesi
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Re: Which Controller

Postby Essex2Visuvesi » Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:22 am

poliss wrote:My preference would be for the wireless Roco/Fleischmann Multimaus Pro + Multizentrale Pro.


Im starting to lean that way too... If it was loconet compatible like the old Twincenter and profi-boss then I would have gone for that system as well
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