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ESU Introduces A DCC Control System

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ESU Introduces A DCC Control System
Posted by gmpullman on Friday, October 13, 2017 8:02 PM

I just recieved an email from ESU announcing their introduction into the US and AU market with a DCC system:

http://www.esu.eu/en/products/digital-control/cabcontrol/

 

Following the thread in General Disucssion about the future of "train control" many of the respondants showed dissatisfaction with the DCC throttle interface.

The ESU system looks like a step toward making the "human interface" with DCC a better solution.

I sometimes use an Android tablet linked through JMRI and Loconet but this system is much more streamlined and seems to be user friendly.

Just thought I'd pass along the announcement for everyone to have a look, if interested.

Regards, Ed

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Posted by Mark R. on Friday, October 13, 2017 9:29 PM

I've already got three of those throttles I use with my EcoS system and absolutely love them !

Mark.

¡ uʍop ǝpısdn sı ǝɹnʇɐuƃıs ʎɯ 'dlǝɥ

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Posted by riogrande5761 on Thursday, April 12, 2018 11:42 AM

Admittedly I haven't used my Digitrax system much, but I even bought the newer DT400D throttle and still have to be shown how to set up, consist and operate engines by a seasonsed Digitrax user.

The above being the case, as I contemplate my next layout, I am thinking it may be time to give up and switch to a new system.  Up until now, I've been thinking about NCE, but in recent months ESU's Cab Control system has come along and it appears to offer a hopefully easier way to configure and control trains.  The clincher for me, as mentioned by someone earlier in this to topic is I am not having to rely stricktly on a touch screen, but the walk around throttle has a physical knob for speed control, which to me is a must.

The more I read up on this system, the more I am thinking it may be the choice.  The cost for the basic wireless system is south of $400 vs. $520 for the NCE wireless so that is a big help to afford it.  Also I can imagine, if it isn't available now, software could be created to allow you to drag and drop engines in the menu to consist them.  How cool would that be?

Any users of the ESU Cab Control have comments now that it's been out a few months?

Mark, how much are the separate throttles if one needs to add more?  Any word on additional throttle models in the future?

Rio Grande.  The Action Road

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Posted by carl425 on Thursday, April 12, 2018 1:05 PM

riogrande5761
how much are the separate throttles if one needs to add more?

$233.99 from YankeeDabbler. ($299 MSRP)

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Posted by mbinsewi on Thursday, April 12, 2018 1:17 PM

I was checking this out.  The video is way too long, I have a basic question, do I have to change or add anything to locos that are already DCC ?

Mike.

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Posted by Mark R. on Thursday, April 12, 2018 7:54 PM

I'll keep it short .... no.

Mark.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Thursday, April 12, 2018 8:48 PM

Thanks Mark,  I did send a message through their web site, just wondering.

As I see the different systems out there, I believe the RailPro does require something added to the loco.

In the future, I'm going to be out of this 2 story cape cod syle house, and finding an independant facility takes me from independent living, through the different stages, and out the back door.

I'll always have a layout.  Just looking at different options.  I use Digitrax now, but who knows in 15 years.  Just trying to keep abreast of whats out there.

Mike.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Thursday, April 12, 2018 9:19 PM

OK, just now recieved an email from Mat Herman at ESU, he said "yes, DCC equippded loco will work, but with ESU decoders, and with RailCom Plus, there will be more features available.

My question has been answered.

Mike.

EDIT:  I might add, there are many discussions about Cab Control, what it works with, and doesn't, going on in other forums.

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Posted by riogrande5761 on Friday, April 13, 2018 7:03 AM

I've just registered for the ESU forums - I assume that is a good way to get info and feedback.  It looks like it could take a few days before I am approved and can log in.

Is there any advantage to registering as a customer, which I assume means you have bought ESU products?  I do own a Loksound equipped IMRC cab forward so I don't know if that qualifies; and I do expect to be purchasing more products - I certainly like the sound of the diesel Loksound engines I've listened too and their regular DCC decoders (nonsound) maybe a good option for equipping many of my DCC ready engines.

Rio Grande.  The Action Road

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Posted by rrinker on Friday, April 13, 2018 7:14 AM

 Is there a customer registration? I have a bunch of Loksound decoders and a Lokprogrammer, and I never did anything on the ESU web site. The group on Yahoo (hopefully they too will move to groups.io for a better experience) is not really official, although Matt does post there. Like the Digitrax and NCE ones, and others, it's mostly peer to peer support.

 I only have one sound loco that's NOT Loksound, my Atlas Trainmaster with QSI, and since I have no issues programming or running it, I haven't bothered to swap it out. I will probably go with Lokpilot for the rest of my non-sound locos, the ones I already have decoders in are using TCS which have also been great but for sake of consistency, especially when trying to use things like Full Throttle in a mixed consist of sound and non sound locos, I will order some Lokpilots. Or just retrofit some of the motor only ones with Loksound. Like I said, love the decoders, not a huge fan of the Euro-style control systems. 

                                            --Randy


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by riogrande5761 on Friday, April 13, 2018 7:30 AM

I've never been a huge fan of the European control systems.  Lenze being one of them.  It's largely push button for speed control and I hate push buttons for that - for me it's got to be a rotary type control.

The thing I like about the new ESU Cab Control is it does have a knob for speed and the tablet style touch display should have literally endless possibilities for an interface to control and consist engines that is easier than anything made by the old "fixed" systems like Digitrax or NCE.  If you like those, thats fine, but if you don't, then the ESU system could have an app written for it that you like.  It just makes sense. 

Imagine everything done on computers and how there are really easy to use, excellent apps there.  No reason that can't happen on an open platform like ESU has, and I expect it will. As it matures, it probably will have multiple apps for controlling trains, and obviously some better than others.

Oh and speaking of flexibility.  One ESU user on another forum is using a Digitrax LNWI to use his ESU Cab Control on his existing Digitrax Command station via loco net.  I am exploring the possibility of using the ESU cab control that way since I have an existing Digitrax Chief system.  It's the Digitrax various key stokes have found are not intuitive to me, so if I can use the existing system with a different, easier to use controller than that may be an option I can go with.

Rio Grande.  The Action Road

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Posted by rrinker on Friday, April 13, 2018 7:44 AM

 It theoretically should work because since the ESU throttle is an Android device, it can run RailDriver like any Android phone, except it also has a knob instead of just the touch screen (I've tried it with my phone, it's fun to play around but even using the volume roacker to control speed, it's much less satisfying for long term operations compared to the traditional throttle). 

 Doing that though doesn't get you features of the ESU command station, witht he auto ID using Railcom and so forth. Though there really is no reason someone couldn;t write an app that prides an alternate form of consisting. I'm not sure the back end part (in the LWNI) supports consisting or not, or if even the 'full' WiThrottle server in JMRI does, but I see no technical reason why it couldn't. And there's absolutely nothing in Digitrax that prevents something feeding it commands to make it consist like NCE using a combination of CV19 and remembering the actual number of the lead and trailing locos. Just needs someone to write the app.

                                              --Randy


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by riogrande5761 on Friday, April 13, 2018 8:31 AM

I'm glad to know the ESU system has that level of flexibility - so the possibilities are endless it sounds like, which is good.  And also good I can marry it to my existing system to use.

I don't expect I would pull the trigger to purchase for some months but I'll use the time to continue to learn and gather information.  In the mean time the product will mature some I would guess and more apps will be written.  Whether or not you like the ESU product, you can see where the future is in command control; I'd have to think other makers would be dinosaurs if they aren't working on products of their own to take advantage of this.  You know the old saying, grow/change or become irrelevant and fade away.

Rio Grande.  The Action Road

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Posted by carl425 on Friday, April 13, 2018 8:57 AM

rrinker
write an app that prides an alternate form of consisting.

Couldn't you use DecoderPro to create the consist and then select the consist number instead of loco number on the throttle?

I have the right to remain silent.  By posting here I have given up that right and accept that anything I say can and will be used as evidence to critique me.

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Posted by rrinker on Friday, April 13, 2018 1:47 PM

 Yes. Actually, you can configure a Digitrax command station to use CV19 consisting instead of their command station based consisting if you want. But that still doesn't give you the functionality of the combination approach that NCE uses where the consist is defined by a value in CV19 PLUS it keeps track of (and requires you to specifically identify) the lead and trailing locos. 

 There is no reaosn though, why an app couldn't do something like prompt for the lead and trailing loco, then prompt for any intermediate locos, and then automatically create a consist int he DIgitrax command station, and either use CV19 for all intermediate locos and add in the load and trailing locos using an advanced consist, or just remember the lead and trailing locos so when you change direction, it select the trailing loco as the primary address so functions control the now lead loco. The program doing the selecting of each loco to add, instead of doing it on the throttle the current way. The user simply keys in addresses of locos to add to the consist.

 This is possible today, it's been possible for a long time. It doesn't seem important enough that anyone had bothered to do it, unless they have and just aren't making it public.

                       --Randy


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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