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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Fellow Forum Members..
It is a very long time since i last visited the forum,let alone post..
lots been happening..leave it as that.

On this occation would be very obliged for some feedback on suitable DCC systems..I am just sterating out in modelling..and am hoping to locate a quality HO Continental Layout?

but whilst i am doing this..i am taking the opportunity to gain some much needed knowledge and buy a few quality items...
It as been suggested to me..that someone like myself who only plans to run a few loco`s at most..on a relatively small layout up to 12`X 3`MAx

the Digtrax Zephry offers everything you could need and upgradablity e.t.c. at an amazing price....

Any thoughts or personal experience with Digitrax..look forward to hearing your comments

I live in Norway now..just thought i would mention it (220 volt) i am really not any kind of authority on Model Railways..

one thing i like the look of the base station of the zephyr..but do not like the look of there hand remotes!! could i use a more user friendly hand remote..either teathered or IR or RC..

all the very best Regards Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi There
Firstly many thanks for your reply, much appreciated...
I do take your point re--my personal criteria..

I was mainly interested in any feedback or should i say additional feedback re the Digitax Zephyr System....

i do not think i need to go to high up the ladder of DCC systems.certainly it would be useful to have upgradability,but not so sure about PC control..but connectivity for downloads..would again be useful..The price of the Digitrax is very reasonable..but would not mind going higher if justified...?also if it maybe possible to say buy the Digitrax and add a better hand control option?

please keep any suggestions coming

most welcome

regards Steve

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70 Posts
Good Day to all the above members who hav kindly contributed so well to my very much obliged to you...

I must just make it clear that i am quite isolated where i live with no support what so ever and certainly no where to try out one let alone several different sytems..
That is why it is so important to receive feedback from you guys, as well as the likes of DCC Supplies e.t.c.

Having read quite a lot now on the Zephyr..i am sort of leaning to a more up to date sytem..offering at least more functions...

so please keep the feedback coming very much obliged to you
regards Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ho Brian,amd many thanks for your kind & helpful reply, much obliged..
funny enough the ROCO MAus had been suggested a couple of times..but i was a bit put off by the new Maus pro at £300? do you have any links to other roco strat sets--also which ammp would be best to replace the non CV capable one

all the best Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hi Brian ,Richard and all..
I am so grateful for all your advice and opinions..

I am unsure now weather to go for Roco Muti Maus with new amp? or Richards suggestion NCE powercab..i have heard of all the DCC systems but have not looked to closely at certainly seems to include everything you would need..wonder how the ROCO & NCE match up..
choices--luckily i have some time before i need to commit to a system so please keep all the advice coming

all the very best Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
QUOTE (Brian Considine @ 19 Jul 2008, 13:47) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Hi Steve,
If you replace the amp with any of the Lenz ones the Multimaus will then read CV's.
The Multimaus Pro is pricey, but it does read CV's & is wireless (not infra red) - I will probably get one to run my LGB garden layout later on.
Have a look on for more information.
Hope this helps.
Hello Again Brian, & everyone else...

I have been reading endlessly about DCC systems..with particular emphasisi on the The Multimaus Pro and from my very limited knowledge i think it offers possibilities.

But now i can see if i were to choose this almost falls in the ESU Next generation DCC price range and that looks & sounds great....further thoughts from members appreciated..there is another aspect which i think is worthy of some consideration? it is the hands on feel of a controller i like the look of the Digitrax Zephyr`s controller..where as i do not like the TV remote look of the NCE...and of course the esu system looks ideal..remember i am very new to all please ignore me if you think i am missing important points!

all the very best Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Morning SRman..Nigel,John,richard

I can not thank you chaps enough for all the quality advice you have given me to date...

Woke up this morning to several very good replies..for some reason i am not being notified of replies? even though i have (immidiate email) in my settings?

No matter..I seem to have given the impression that i am just going for looks? (wrong) i just use the term looks & sounds good as general term.of course i will not be choosing on looks alone...

The NCE really does seem to come very highly recommeded...I think how i should have explained it, was i like the idea of a static control panel like the DIGITRAX ZEPHYR`S where you can feel the throttle...but if i were to go for something other than the ZEPHYR (other than the ESU ) that i would have to have a hand unit? the NCE (although i have never seen one) looks big to me`? with small screen? i could be wrong..

Unfortunately..i am as isolated as i make it sound..which is very frustrating..but there are no DCC in my neck of the shops nor individuals,,and due to illness i can not go touring the all my advice as to come from kind folk like your selves on this forum or through the likes of DCC supplies..

at the moment i own two new BRAWA dcc loco`s both with ESU sound chips fitted one is BRAWA 40002 KWStE T5 2-6-2 tank locomotive DC Digital Sound (factory fitted chip) & the other is Electrical locomotives BR E 77 DR (0252) which i had sent to DCC models for ESU sound chip fitting i have also just purchased two Glaskastens both by TRIX both with SCX???
T22347 OBB 98304 Tank Locomotive III, (T22347) & Trix 21249 Sonderserie KPEV T 2, KKK, Decoder, NEU--> this is the one from the freight ltd edtion set.

Hope this answers the point re-what kind of chips e.t.c. i am learning...have not got a clue about accessory decoders..must just say i never for a second thought this was going to be easy! it is just i am so keen to make the right choices, as i am very good at wasting money..!!!

Certainly it would be sensible to buy a DCC system which is fully upgradable...But i think maybe the ESU ECOS will be a bridge to far for me? DCC SUPPLIES have a good offer on the ESU ECOS at the moment.whilst the ROCO PRO MAUS comes in at £300+i think...

NCE is possibly nearing the winning post!?

QUOTE 1. it only supports one "slave" controller as it comes; and
2. it only has two memory slots to "remember" what locomotives you are running

Okay if i were to go for the NCE and i am tempted ...when you say (1) slave controller? does this mean hand held unit remote?
2. it only has two memory slots can this be upgraded? not that even i see this as a problem.

will the NCE work with all chips and accessories? and in Norway.

Will leave you in peace for a bit..but please get back to me on or off forum @anytime with advice ,suggestions e.t.c.

all helps and the good thing is i do not need to choose today

all the very best & many thanks

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Hi Nigel & Richard..
Please can i answer you both at the same time..but firstly thank you ever so much for all the fantastic help and advice which is very much appreciated...i feel i am getting very close now to choosing and from everything i have read i think the NCE(will contact Mr Russel @bromsgrove)

Please excuse me if i seem confused or a bit overwhelmed it takes me longer than most to decipher things!owing to my illness...
i am interested inthe alternative control hand sets? are these instead of the one supplied or as an extra i have nothing against the big handset other than i felt it looked very big and Small controls..but if there are others which are nicer to use or better..i would like very much to explore any pros & cons there maybe?

Would like to say that my room is relatively small..the layout would be max 11 feet long by at most 3 feet wide ...i do not expect to be running all locos at all times (ever) there maybe when finished 8,9,10 locos but not all at once..

I wonder if i should just find best price and go for the NCE pro cab? what do you think?
and if as was suggested i should have accessory units/decoders i will require help with this to..may as well purchase everything required in u.k. even though i will have to pay import VAT ? high charges this end still works out a wee bit cheaper from UK, but almost neutral?
all i would require is continental plug +

QUOTE might suggest one other NCE accessory; the automated switch to separate Programming from Layout track. It is a cheap addition. That way you can have a separate programming track and reduce the risk of accidentally reprogramming all the locomotives on your layout to the same decoder settings.

a good example of add ons would be Nigel's suggestion above..but anything else you can suggest would be most helpful...
there seems to be some really good and very interesting add ons/accessories and i would like to look at these also..
It is difficult as i do not even have a layout as yet?

I am advertising continually for a quality layout..but no luck to date..

without labouring the point to much..i am not able to undertake any modelling work?? i have a lot of problems,with concentration,memory..and so on.... but with regard to modelling:-my hands are not good ..i suffer from chronic psoriasis to the hands which make touching nothing painful it is not pleasant...that is why i have never tried to build before...

so if anyone out there knows of a first class Continental mountain multi level layout please let me know

I am excited about the prospect of RC but wonder if it would be a bit over the top for a small room? please try to convince me...

QUOTE The PSU shipped with a PowerCab in the UK is a 220v/110v "wall brick" fitted with US plug. You need a US to EU adaptor (should be cheap, its the travel adaptor for US people visiting the EU), or a different 14v DC 2amp PSU.

Please just let me know which of the above is the very best option the amp replacement maybe?

hope some of the above made some sense to you

look forward to more advice

and very many thanks
regards Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #26 ·
QUOTE (Brian Considine @ 20 Jul 2008, 19:31) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Maybe my mkI hand is different but I can use the MRC/GM easily with one hand - one of the reasons it's popular with UK modelers is that it does have a knob rather than push buttons for speed control, which also goes to a centre-off knob when shunting mode is selected.

I suppose when it comes to must use the controller/hand set that comes with the particular system you purchase? am i basically i have never seen any DCC equipment close up..then it is all new to me..but very interesting

cheers Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Morning Everyone..
again i could not wait to switch on the PC to see what new advice had arrived...brilliant..
i am in touch with John @Bromsgrove models..he as already been invaluable with his suggestions..and i will most definitely be dealing with him..if he has the patience?
I was getting myself into an over complicated situation with the alternative hand sets e.t.c. and do now understand that i need to use the supplied power cab for most of my main functions on the layout do not see the point of fixing panels for extra a 12 feet layout that is only operated from front?I am seeing far more clearly the song goes!!

Re-Customs % VAT e.t.c. yes i am aware of the VAT i order stuff most days from u.k. & Europe...trouble is this end our vat is 25.%+ £15-->up-wards for post Norway collection it is always a balancing act..and the Norwegian customs are very efficient indeed!

But it is just one of those things..helped a little by VAT exemption in u.k.

Anyway chaps it looks like for a start off i will be going for the NCE because all of you have more than persuaded me this system is excellent in all the right areas...and i may just buy there Cab 5 rotary controller just to have that feel?which if i have understood properly can be plugged in to the power cab unit? (are there better alternatives to the NCE cab 5 which could work??)

most of this debate focused..i.e. me liking the Zephyr because it had a fixed controller throttle e.t.c.

so for the moment at least all the very best any further suggestions always welcome

regards Steve

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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Hello Wiggy...
many thanks for a superb reply..and you are quite right i have been overwhelmed by all the fantastic and very kind advice,,very much appreciated..John @ Bromsgrove as been a diamond! really as..because i am hard work
he as sent many p.m.s answering fully my many well as putting up with my confusion!First Rate...

the more i read..about NCE the more i learn and the more impressed i become

Must admit it as taken time for things to sink in but i am getting there...NCE-POWER & PRO(most folk including John suggest i need no more than the power cab) I just like idea of having pro cab from the start...

I am so enjoying exploring the world of DCC and the add on bits (accessory units/decoders e.t.c.) to which i am keen to know & learn a bit about....and it will make what ever layout i obtain?? that bit more interesting..

I think your blog together with the review section on DCC is first class...and i can understand most of it...which helps!!

I hope you are able to rest and get over your operation

all the very best & many thanks to both your goodself and everyone else

Regards Steve

QUOTE (wiggy25 @ 23 Jul 2008, 16:33) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Steve,

It looks like you've had many replies!
I've just got back home from being in hospital having my discectomy, 4 days in hospital is very boring!!

I have the NCE PowerCab and it is a fantastic bit of kit.
I've also bought many items from John at Bromsgrove models.

If you look at this link to my review of the NCE PowerCab.

Also if you click on my BLOG link I have written up a bit about fitting the NCE Smart Booster to the set up as well!

When you buy the PowerCab it has a 2amp max power supply and like you have found out you can only add 1 further controller.

By adding the Smart Booster, you connect a 3amp supply to this which then gives you a max of 3amps to the track, it also allows you to run trains and completely unplug the controller as a true walkabout and all will still run.
It also allows you to add a further 4 cabs.
It's just a different way of upgrading the system, if you don't want to go for the full Powerhouse Pro system.
I did it this way as I had a spare 3amp power supply.

I think you will be impressed, anyway take a look at that link and my blog which will give you some more info on my set up, which may help you or at least give you more information.

Going for a lie down!


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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #36 ·
H Wiggy
good to hear from you again..

must say the way you speak about NCE really does excite me...i can not wait to get one or the other system..i have read the manuals got a bit bogged down..but that was not the manuals thats just me..i am afraid!

At the moment at least i have 4 locos all DCC two are Brawa with sound one with smoke also... if for instance i was happening to run say 4 of these at one time?? would the power cab have what it requires power wise to cope? especilally if you include lights..points..and all the other bits which hopefully will be part of unknown layout? i think that was why i thought go for pro cab first?

Now excuse me for been a bit confused
but you bought your dad the Pro cab hand set ,am i go with his Power cab?does that mean he did not have the full pro cab set up..or have i blown a fuse again?

I think i should go lie down wiggy

look forward to hearing back

all the best Steve
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