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Ian Wigglesworth
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Hi all,

Just been surfing about and found this.
Would be nice to know what this firmware update actually does, strange how the Elite has been delayed and yet within 3 days of it being available new firmware already!

For those who already have the Elite, does it come with the USB cable that is required to connect it to the PC?

HORNBY ELITE FIRMWARE

Ian
 

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QUOTE (wiggy25 @ 1 Apr 2007, 23:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hi all,

Just been surfing about and found this.
Would be nice to know what this firmware update actually does, strange how the Elite has been delayed and yet within 3 days of it being available new firmware already!

For those who already have the Elite, does it come with the USB cable that is required to connect it to the PC?

HORNBY ELITE FIRMWARE

Ian

As a matter of interest what are people supposed to do if their chosen DCC controller (of any make) requires an update & they are not on the www ? Not everyone is, & we find that quite a few people that have access to the www do not have their own PC & rely on work, library, friends PC's.
 

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DT
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How this happens is that the product was made at least a month ago. It has taken a while to get to Europe by container ship.

In the meantime, the developers have been doing last minute updates to the software - perhaps fixing bugs that have been reported from users of the pre-production samples.

I'm glad that at least you can plug the device in and upgrade it. Better than having to send it back to the factory for a fix.

Just a warning regarding firmware updates. If you disconnect the unit from the power when it is updating, the unit's software will be messed up and will not restart. Don't disconnect the unit when it is updating - even if it takes a while. If you do, you will have to send it back to the factory.
 

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QUOTE As a matter of interest what are people supposed to do if their chosen DCC controller (of any make) requires an update & they are not on the www ? Not everyone is, & we find that quite a few people that have access to the www do not have their own PC & rely on work, library, friends PC's.

Manufacturers generally make it clear what the process is and what the charges might be and customers can decide which provison is most convenient for them. It could be a return to factory, a return to stockist, or a USB port PC download.

Good point though and something that prospective buyers should ask about when looking at digital control kit.

I have noted that Hornby have placed this in their Customer Support section. To increase awareness it may have been a good idea to have had a news story and to include information about this in the Hornby Digital section of their website.

In saying this I don't know what instructions about this come with the packaging however I soon will!


Happy modelling
Gary
 

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Ian Wigglesworth
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
QUOTE (Doug @ 2 Apr 2007, 08:07) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>How this happens is that the product was made at least a month ago. It has taken a while to get to Europe by container ship.

In the meantime, the developers have been doing last minute updates to the software - perhaps fixing bugs that have been reported from users of the pre-production samples.

I'm glad that at least you can plug the device in and upgrade it. Better than having to send it back to the factory for a fix.

Just a warning regarding firmware updates. If you disconnect the unit from the power when it is updating, the unit's software will be messed up and will not restart. Don't disconnect the unit when it is updating - even if it takes a while. If you do, you will have to send it back to the factory.

I think it's great that you can download and update the firmware!!
I have the NCE Powercab, I'm waiting for the postcard to tell me there is an update available, then I have to pay for the new chip to install.

The download upgrade is much better IMHO.
It would be even better if they did actually say what bugs it fixes or if there are more functions added, if it's bug fixes this would be good for Hornby as most users would then not need to contact them.

Ian
 

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QUOTE (wiggy25 @ 1 Apr 2007, 23:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hi all,

Just been surfing about and found this.
Would be nice to know what this firmware update actually does, strange how the Elite has been delayed and yet within 3 days of it being available new firmware already!

For those who already have the Elite, does it come with the USB cable that is required to connect it to the PC?

HORNBY ELITE FIRMWARE

Ian

it dose not come with a usb lead good thing is the one on my printer fits.
 

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QUOTE (dbclass50 @ 2 Apr 2007, 15:58) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>As a matter of interest what are people supposed to do if their chosen DCC controller (of any make) requires an update & they are not on the www ? Not everyone is, & we find that quite a few people that have access to the www do not have their own PC & rely on work, library, friends PC's.

I have an NCE Power Cab which is upgraded by changing a chip inside the throttle. NCE supplies the chips as updates are released ( for a small cost) and will also supply an updated manual, if required, depending on the nature of the upgrade ie not required for a bug fix but would be required if the upgrade enabled additional functionality.

The downside of this is that a small cost is involved with supplying the upgraded chip but on the positive side anyone with the NCE system can upgrade regardless of access to a computer and the internet. Since you can't please all of the people all of the time it's probably not a bad way to go.

Anyway just the thoughts of a happy NCE user.
Glenn.
 

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I can confirm that the Hornby Elite currently has version 1.0 of the software installed and I have successfully installed version 1.1 using the firmware update process. The Hornby instructions are clear. Using your PC you do need to locate which port your USB cable is hooked up to to permit the software to download into your Elite. Once the download was completed I turned the power off and rebooted the Elite and version 1.1 loaded up. All amazingly simple.

Happy modelling
Gary
 

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I tried to follow the link to update my Elite Firmware and could not find the required download, just the walkthrough instructions.
I've just put the phone down to Hornby (4/4/07 16.05) who tell me that the 'download is not yet ready for the public' and has been withdrawn. So I guess I'll carry on with V1.0 which is fine at the moment.

Kev
 

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Now that's worrying. Does the fact that the upgrade "isn't ready for the public" mean that what was on the site isn't the final release version and still has some work to be done on it?

If that is the case, I wonder what effect (if any) there will be on those who have already downloaded the "upgrade" and then "upgrade" again using the release version.............

Just a thought........

Does this indicate that, once again, Hornby is trying to rush things out before fully testing them?

Regards

John R
Bromsgrove Models
 

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I am now a live real time guinea pig!

The size of the download suggests the entire software was overwritten by the entirely new version and that it was not simply a patch. This will probably be the case with all downloads as the console may not be sophisticated enough to integrate patches into its memory bank and simply deletes, downloads and reboots. It is a common procedure adopted by companies and I operate several programmes on my PC that are subject to entire replacement builds every so often.

Well it seems to work although there are many features I have not yet utilised. I guess I'll just wait for the next download.

Or shall I offer my version of the Elite as a limited edition V1.1 never to be released again example on eBay?

Not a chance!


Did Hornby actually put this page up on their public website or was it a page in preparation that was accidently discovered?


I can see how this news might be a concern to those who are less technology minded. From my perspective I think its exciting as I am curious to see if there is any difference between my "unofficial" Elite and a "proper" one!

Happy modelling
Gary
 

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In reading many posts. it seems that some DCC systems require a PC to upgrade a control unit just like Gary has done. Now OK, we all have PC's coz we are using it for this forum.
But what happens to modellers who do not have a PC, how do they get advised that an upgrade is needed & then how do they do it?

Ron
 

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DT
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QUOTE (Sol @ 5 Apr 2007, 01:09) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>In reading many posts. it seems that some DCC systems require a PC to upgrade a control unit just like Gary has done. Now OK, we all have PC's coz we are using it for this forum.
But what happens to modellers who do not have a PC, how do they get advised that an upgrade is needed & then how do they do it?

Ron


You would have to take it back to the shop. If they can't help, you would have to send it in to the service department. Same as any electrical device that has firmware updates - mobile phones, WiFi equipment etc.

I would say that it is in the interest of the shops to offer this service if they can. It would save time and some cost and would make the customers happy in the process.
 

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Doug, that is what I thought.
Living Down Under with some modellers so far out from hobby shops ( in some cases 200+ miles) that they rely on mail order for all of their requirements, it can make it very expensive to return to the shop of purchase who will then send it to the distributor who can be 1000+ miles away in another State.
Of course if it was purchased from overseas, then that makes it worse. At least those who retain DC analogue normally don't have that problem.

Ron
 

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DT
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QUOTE (Sol @ 5 Apr 2007, 04:45) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>...At least those who retain DC analogue normally don't have that problem...
I don't see it as a negative. It is a massive positive - even if you have to post it in. It means that your device is - to an extent - future proof. Any problems or upgrades to the software running the device can be fixed instead of you having to change the device to get new functionality. Even Lenz has this capability, but their system is just a little too ols and it is not designed to be updated over the Internet via a PC. You still have to send it back to the factory.

Sure DC controllers don't have these issues, but then they don't offer the features and possibilities of a DCC unit like the Elite.
 

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Doug, yes , posting it is one way but knowing postage times, one could be without the system for two-three weeks or even longer. One of my friends here has Lenz & the last time he had it updated was two years ago when it fell over but he will talk with a Lenz dealer here in Aust about updates.
Yes, it does seem that updating off the Internet is the best way if the DCC system allows it & if Hornby does this, it will make life easier.

Ron
 

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Just a word of advice to anyone trying to do the upgrade - do NOT connect the USB cable to a USB hub. If you do the upgrade will not work. The USB cable MUST be connected directly to the computer - this is the voice of experience!!

I found I had to try the upgrade because I could not get changes to CV29 (to change the direction of travel of the loco) on the main to work. I tried with both Zimo and TCS decoders, but no go.

I'm now off to see if the upgrade has solved the problem.

Regards

John R
Bromsgrove Models
 

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My USB cable was fitted to a USB 7 port hub when the Elite was upgraded to V1.1. It may be an issue with the hub or even a spike during download however I would agree that a direct PC USB connection for downloads is safer. To change the default direction settings there are instructions on page 23 of the Elite manual for loco configuration. Are these the procedures being used? CV29 has a complex bit data configuration value and Hornby have provided an indirect (simplified?) procedure to change CV29 bit values.

When changing the default direction of my Bachmann Class 20 sound loco using the Hornby Elite procedure on page 23 the CV29 value on read back increases by a value of 1 (presumably because the bit value changes from 0 to 1 for this part of the CV setting) and the direction that the loco travels relative to the arrows on the Elite console is reversed.

Happy modelling
Gary
 
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