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Lenz System - Computer and /or wireless control.


250BOB

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Hi Guys,

I am trying to get my head around what bits and pieces I would need to purchase in order to upgrade my Lenz control system.

 

I would like to be able to connect the Lenz control box to my PC...and then use the screen such that I can set cv's , control trains etc.,

 

Also, I might like to do this wirelessly by using Touchcab.

 

Is there just one piece of Lenz kit that will essentially do this for me.

 

Bob.

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That'll be this gizmo, Bob:

 

23151 USB and LAN Interface

In addition to the USB port the new Digital plus interface offers an Ethernet gateway for connecting the system to a PC or to a router. Thus some interesting new options are available such as, for example, wireless control with an iPod or an iPhone.

Connect the new interface via XpressNet to the command station and via Ethernet to a router. Now you can control your model railway wireless with your iPhone or iPod and the software TouchCab which is particularly customised for Digital plus purposes.

 

Retail £138 - normally around £125-130.

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Thanks Guys.......I dont want to initially do the wireless thing, but it is an option for later. But I initially want to just operate some locos and adjust cv's etc on my pc.

 

From what you are saying, this is the piece of kit that I want now, that will also do later when I want to go wireless too. YES.???

 

I just want to be absolutely clear in my mind before spending the money.

 

Cheers...........Bob

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Bob,

 

there are two main options:

 

a - Lenz box above. Its expensive, but it is the only box for Lenz which isn't "build it yourself" (there is a build it yourself option). The Lenz box will give you computer control of the Lenz system via a cable into the Lenz box. If you want to add wireless smartphone throttles (TouchCab, etc), then you will need to add an ethernet cable from the Lenz box to a wireless router. You may already own a wireless router with your home broadband, or they are a cheap generic product (I use one which cost £22 and is smaller than a fag packet when taking kit to shows).

 

 

b - stand alone programming device. Most common UK example is the Sprog, costing around £60. This gives computer setup of CV's, and computer running of locos. BUT it CANNOT be connected to the same layout as the Lenz system. The Sprog is totally stand-alone.

 

 

Software, the JMRI / DecoderPro software which I was using at Manchester will work fine with either hardware arrangement. Its the same software, just a preference setting to indicate which hardware is connected to the back of the computer.

 

 

- Nigel

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Bob,

 

USB cable goes to computer or Ethernet cable to your wireless router - if you have one (needed for Touchcab).

 

XpressNet cable to the XpressNet on the command station or LA152 panel.

 

It comes with its own control software but you can use something better like DecoderPro (free from JMRI) for decoder programming and, in due course, you can move on to running trains, setting points, etc..

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I've got the Lenz USB and LAN interface. I've successfully connected it with a wireless bridge to my home wireless network and can wander around with any wireless PC running JMRI (latest version) to play trains. When I finally buy an iPod touch I'll use that( instead of my old laptop) with Touchcab.

 

Tony

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Bob,

 

there are two main options:

 

a - Lenz box above. Its expensive, but it is the only box for Lenz which isn't "build it yourself" (there is a build it yourself option). The Lenz box will give you computer control of the Lenz system via a cable into the Lenz box. If you want to add wireless smartphone throttles (TouchCab, etc), then you will need to add an ethernet cable from the Lenz box to a wireless router. You may already own a wireless router with your home broadband, or they are a cheap generic product (I use one which cost £22 and is smaller than a fag packet when taking kit to shows).

- Nigel

 

Hi

 

It is also possible to use the PC wirelessly to connect to the Lenz System using Decoder pro.

 

Cheers

 

Paul

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Thankyou so much for all your input guys.......I am much much clearer now.

 

Thanks Nigel for setting my mind working last Saturday at the LYDCC show, when you gave a seminar on Decoder Pro 3.

 

Some very interesting options for me to investigate further

 

Bob.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Bob

 

Don't want to confuse you with more options since all the above is fine. Just to inform you that another software option (which is what I use) for computer control is Rocrail. You can run Rocrail from your PC, smartphone and tablet.

 

Kenneth

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BTW - your Lenz Command Station needs to be at v3.6 (or later) to work with the USB interface gizmo.

BTW - your Lenz Command Station needs to be at v3.6 (or later) to work with the USB interface gizmo.

I assume I'm not updated, as I bought my set over 5yrs ago........I can only only toggle between two locos using the escape button.

Bob

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I have version 3.5 which is probably the same version you have since I only have two locos in my roster. The Lenz usb interface world without problems.

 

Kenneth

 

Hi

 

Which Lenz USB interface? There are two and as far as I am aware the new one (Ref 23151) with the ethernet port requires a command station at v3.6.

 

Cheers

 

Paul

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Yes you are right. I have the previous on without the Ethernet port. But I think that with rocrail you could user wireless version by making sure that controller and server use the same network.

 

Kenneth

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