SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby GoingUnderground » Fri Oct 09, 2009 7:55 am

Yes, the 255 and 4007 are very good for their size, you can put one underneath a '38 stock tube train with no problems to leave the interior clear.

However, both the 255 and 4007 do have a reputation for acting up when other locos on the layout use different chips. i can see their performance change when I put a Bachmann starter set loco on the layout and revert to normal when I take it off. Others have reported runaways.

Now if that "feature" was fixed then they would be worth reintroducing.
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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby MrB » Fri Oct 09, 2009 9:29 am

Its funny you say that about the ZTC chips, I have never noticed it myself, but have had two locos remove themself from my layout with no ZTC chips present, the just seemed to creep when they were assigned to be stationary on the controller, but these were ESU Loksound and a Digitrax DH123. In both cases causing damage to my locos and most recently righting off my ESU ECoS. I now have place buffers to prevent this in future, but it's too late now.
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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby Crosland » Fri Oct 09, 2009 12:24 pm

Oakydoke wrote:Sorry, I don't know anything about ZTC's decoders, I always assumed they bought them in and re-badged them. If that's the case, does anyone know the source?
It could be that the models mentioned are available under their manufacturers own brand name, unless they have been superceded by newer ones.

They have designed their own and also re-badged various others, including Digitrax (I believe) and Keuhn (to my certain knowledge).

I had to laugh when David Nicholson asked me to keep quiet about one of their decoders being A re-badged Keuhn. The fact was they were shipped with Keuhn manufacturer ID and model number in CVs7 & 8!

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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby A Do Ron Ron » Fri Oct 09, 2009 1:12 pm

Crosland wrote:They have designed their own and also re-badged various others, including Digitrax (I believe) and Keuhn (to my certain knowledge).

I had to laugh when David Nicholson asked me to keep quiet about one of their decoders being A re-badged Keuhn. The fact was they were shipped with Keuhn manufacturer ID and model number in CVs7 & 8!

Andrew Crosland

That's a good point Andrew.

Roy & Terry, maybe it's worth a look to see if the 255 and 4007 can be identified as another companies products.

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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby Nigelcliffe » Fri Oct 09, 2009 2:15 pm

Crosland wrote:
Oakydoke wrote:Sorry, I don't know anything about ZTC's decoders, I always assumed they bought them in and re-badged them. If that's the case, does anyone know the source?
It could be that the models mentioned are available under their manufacturers own brand name, unless they have been superceded by newer ones.

They have designed their own and also re-badged various others, including Digitrax (I believe) and Keuhn (to my certain knowledge).


And Soundtraxx, though I think ZTC were open about the origin of the sound decoders.

Keuhn do make fairly small decoders, though a bit basic if their website description of CV's for tuning are anything to go by.


- Nigel (still doing DCC archeology to complete the JMRI file for the ZTC sound chips ).
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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby 55H » Tue Nov 03, 2009 1:03 am

Jack wrote:
55H wrote:I am given to understand that a third party will shortly be launching the ZTC range


I can see the advert now, "For sale, one Norwegian Blue, two careful owners ..." :lol:

Sorry, much as I like the idea, it sounds a bit crazy ...



Crazy Mr Neil Kinison will launch his new parrot display at warley according to this month's model rail :D :D
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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby steve fay » Tue Nov 03, 2009 9:31 pm

Im sorry to see there demise again, I have been using there 505 for a few years and am very impressed with it. It seems that the cheaper plastic boxes from the main sream killed off a good product, not excellent but good
Im trying to build a layout around this system but will probably have to sell it on or put it in the bin
Can any one recommend a good controller powerfull enough for O gauge with at least 15 sound functions on it?
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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby Dagworth » Wed Nov 04, 2009 7:59 pm

steve fay wrote:Im sorry to see there demise again, I have been using there 505 for a few years and am very impressed with it. It seems that the cheaper plastic boxes from the main sream killed off a good product, not excellent but good
Im trying to build a layout around this system but will probably have to sell it on or put it in the bin
Can any one recommend a good controller powerfull enough for O gauge with at least 15 sound functions on it?

Try a Lenz set 100, you can then use your 505 as a slave on it if you wish.
Latest software on Lenz goes to (IIRC) 28 functions

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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby 55H » Wed Nov 04, 2009 10:22 pm

steve fay wrote:Im sorry to see there demise again, I have been using there 505 for a few years and am very impressed with it. It seems that the cheaper plastic boxes from the main sream killed off a good product, not excellent but good
Im trying to build a layout around this system but will probably have to sell it on or put it in the bin
Can any one recommend a good controller powerfull enough for O gauge with at least 15 sound functions on it?



Dont give up just yet this is the guy who is taking on the ZTC situation

http://www.modelrailwaysdecoded.co.uk

looks like he knows his way around DCC, according to Model rail he has been associated with ZTC for over 16 years
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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby nigeb1 » Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:22 pm

I'm a very happy user of the ZTC 511. I feel it's a shame that SBX couldn't continue with the products. I purchased the ZTC 511 along with many decoders including the latest diamond series and all have proved reliable and excellent. I never had any bad experiences purchasing from ZTC and the items always arrived very quickly and all worked except one decoder which was faulty on arrival and replaced immediately. I recently purchased some additional equipment from SBX but they unfortunately have sent out one item incorrectly which I'm trying to resolve though it looks like this will not be possible now they have dropped the range.

In my view the 511 is an excellent controller and does everything I need and with the computer interface it offers some great functionality. It's a shame as one other contributor has said that the DCC manufacturers can't bring a more up to date set of products to the market with more intuitive user interfaces but I guess the recession will make them think twice about spending large sums of money on development.

It seems to me that since the introduction of the Hornby Zero 1, which I also purchased all those years ago, that the market and standards have taken so long to develop. Let's face it, why do we want to type in controls to set off loco number 7 when, in this day and age, we could just have a drop down list with all the real names etc. From a computer perspective we should also drive for standard networking for products to communicate, after all IP networking is tried, tested, efficient and cheap. If companies want to provide good products at a competitive price, don't reinvent the wheel. The PC market has proven it is better for companies to co-operate and standardise than to create one off custom solutions that are replaced over and over.

Having said that, until something more 'advanced' comes along, the 511 will do me just fine for the 30 or so loco's I have on the layout, but next time I look to upgrade I will be looking for real compatibility, interoperability and something which isn't restricted so tightly to the company that manufactures it.
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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby chertsey chopper » Mon Nov 09, 2009 9:18 am

There's an old saying in customer service circles..."for every complaint about a product, ten people get to hear about it".
I remember some years ago inquiring about how much it would cost to install ZTC on my layout and recall that the high price put me off, especially when at the time I had over 100 different Locomotives. Better to wait until it was popular and the price came down a bit. Glad I did.
I still haven't invested in DCC despite the fact that I have thinned my stock out significantly. I'm not a Luddite by any means, it's just that I can't be bothered to alter my Bachmann locos, not yet at least... They run fine as they are.
The general concensus I get on this subject is that it was another over-priced set-up that looked good but failed to deliver, in which case it's right that it be replaced, re-developed or dropped entirely if it's not up to the job. That's just good business sense. After all...there's only so much money available for new exploration, and there seem to be better and cheaper products out there that DO seem to cut the mustard..

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Re: SBX give up attempt to revive ZTC

Postby SimonME46 » Fri Nov 20, 2009 11:05 am

EtchedPixels wrote:The throttle interface and the system behind it are two different things entirely. Would there really be any point starting from the ZTC stuff given what is probably needed is a completely new design throttle which uses something standard as an interface (loconet etc) to plug into existing ranges of product.

Or for that matter JMRI on a netbook and a bit of coding to extend the throttle classes plus a couple of those USB knobs you can buy ought to give you the right thing.

Alan


I think you really hit the nail on the head there Alan.

Given the extremely low cost of laptops/the fact that so many of us have superceded hardware lying around, your suggestion makes the most sense. Why make a specialised computer when any notebook has more capability and a better interface? My plan for my exhibition layout was to have a laptop there anyway to run a powerpoint preso to accompany commentary, or to hold the train movements etc (however I am not a fan of computer control of points/signals, but others would be)

I imagine that the control interface I would like is not rocket science. Even though I have a ZTC 511 and am very happy with it, i'd happily go a steam version of the train controller....thus I'd have proper brake control, and clearly designated 'buttons' for things like injectors/coal/whistle/couplers/buffers etc.
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