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Old 12th November 2005, 11:06
m.levin's Avatar
m.levin m.levin is offline
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Location: Leeds, West Yorkshire, UK
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Cool Dcc starter

i have plans to go Dcc for Christmas. im hopefully starting with a bachmann Dcc starter set ,depending on santa, i was advised to start this way. long term plan or dreams are to have a full dcc system controlled by a pc/laptop. im researching at the minute so any advise will be welcome.

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Old 13th November 2005, 21:03
jordansmith0104 jordansmith0104 is offline
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nice one that mast cost a lot
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Old 13th November 2005, 21:30
Richie Richie is offline
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Hi m.

As a way to enter DCC, the Bachmann system has simplicity as its advantage. However, it is very limiting in other ways, especially when it comes to expansion options. The primary issues are a lack (at present) of a computer interface, the limitation of only being able to use 10 different addresses, and the lack of programming ability beyond address. You can't control points or signals from it either.

For a similar price a Roco start set gives you 99 loco adresses, availability of a computer interface, programming of CVs, a decoder fitted locomotive and some wagons, and a circle of track. OK, the locomotive is german outline, but you could rob the decoder out of it and sell it on ebay! Other accessories available include a very handy points control module.

A very nice standalone controller is the Digitrax Zephyr, which also represents very good value for money. It is capable of 9,999 locomotive addresses, point signal control and lots more... all in all nearly as much as some systems twice the price.

I would recommend signing up to the DCC UK yahoo group (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DCCUK) for a comparison chart of DCC systems, and a general wealth of knowledge.


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Old 14th November 2005, 10:25
layoutlevel layoutlevel is offline
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Hi I have just started using the Bachmann Dcc I find it works quite well for a starter set and good value.
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Old 14th November 2005, 12:53
Pill Pill is offline  
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Location: Paulton somerset
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As with all things it's horses for courses, most DCC users are quite ferocious in defence of their choosen system/manufactuer. I've been using Digitrax for six years now and I'm happy and confident I made a good choice. With DCC it depends what you want from your system, I believe the choice should be made on features, amp capacity, monetary cost comes further down the list.
Considering the main stream players in the Uk market:
Starter sets
Bachmann EZ-DCC
does offer a starting point in DCC but is very limited in features and in amps. Bachmann have listed on their products list expansion to the system but when this will become available is anyones guess.
The Roco Locomouse
Offers better value for money, but remains a limited system, you often can find one on E-Bay at a reasonable price. Amps (2.7)
The starter set that most people in the UK would be familar with would be the
Lenz compak this has 2.5 amps. It has limited programing and two digit addressing but offers excellent value for money as a starter set. It is a frequent point of entry, and will suit most smaller home layouts.

A summary of DCC systems can be found @

If you want to control a few more loco's and want a bit more from your system, then the Digitrax Zephyr, offers excellent value for money and a fully featured system with four digit addressing. It has a limit of 2.5 amps. ZTC are about to offer something similar with a model 505, probably with similar limitations. Next in line would be the Gauge Master Prodigy.

You then move into the top end systems and here Digitrax, Lenz and NCE are freely available in the UK. The main difference between Digitrax and the others being the cab bus which is loconet, this is has a reputation for reliablility.Lenz have Xpressnet. NCE has it's own cab bus system. The cab bus is used to tie component parts to the controller like trottles, stationary decoders, and is a vital part of topend systems.

With all these alternatives, before paying your buck it pays to speak to established users. Try the systems for yourself. Also a few hours on the web researching which system does what will help you make a decission.
Hornby are supposed to be announcing their entry in to DCC on the stroke of midnight 2006.
Have fun
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Old 14th November 2005, 12:54
Pill Pill is offline  
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The URL that didnt come through on my previous post is:

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