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Barry Broskowitz posted:

Rick,

I can affirm that that's how it works. The DCS Remote allows setting starting TIU Track voltage at 1.0 volts.

I'll report it to MTH as a bug.

Barry & Rick, not sure if this is relevant in the current version, but within the 1st year of dcs's public release and while at York, I mentioned to MTH staff the problem I also experienced running some conventional items that would takeoff with a jack rabbit start at the initial 5.0v mark despite in the settings having the min voltage set to 1.0v.  I was told despite setting the min variable voltage to 0 or 1 volt, the dcs/tiu system will always default to 5v because that is the minimum voltage to reliably transmit the dcs signal.

You can have a steam train ...If you'd just lay down your tracks.

Keystone,

That's news to me. MTH changed the starting voltage for the DCS Remote's TIU Tracks to 1 volt several DCS Releases ago.

I reported the anomaly in the DCS App to MTH a couple of weeks ago, however, I've not yet received a response.

Barry

 

DCS Ambassador & author of The DCS Companion series of books

Train-Ca-Teers - All For O and O For All!

 

Barry, as I mentioned this was during the initial public release year (ver. 2.21?).  I can't remember exactly who told me (possibly Jeff S. after consulting w/ Andy E. and another person, but the consensus of the min. 0 to 5v start was due to DCS signal integrity. 

IIRC (it's been many yrs.),  there wasn't much concern by MTH since they all felt that the push towards complete command control - be it DCS or TMCC - would bring many if not most conventional operators to the command side where a 5v starting voltage would not be as materially relevant.  However, they said that they would look into the possibility of being able to reduce the 5v min. to a lesser amount.  Granted, jack rabbit starts are mitigated at 5v w/ some conventional locos w/ smoke on and pulling lighted passenger cars but speed is the game w/ small or single unit conventional units.  It would be good if subsequent advances in hardware/software could alleviate the issue.  Your help is always appreciated.

*On a different, but related speed topic.  Has there been any improvement with low acceleration rates not being observed when coming out of the PFA sequence?  I set my acceleration (at 1 or 2 s-mph) and deceleration rate (between 3 & 4 s-mph).  Deceleration noticeably responds to the lower speed setting, but I don't see much difference in the acceleration rates between 4 or 1 s-mph when the PFA ends and the loco pulls out faster than desired and always faster than the higher set decel. rate speed of the loco as it came in for a stop.

You can have a steam train ...If you'd just lay down your tracks.

I would strongly suggest that anyone wishing to use the MTH DCS app for conventional control look into setting up a Lionel Powermaster within the app instead of using the app’s native variable voltage control. You will notice a big improvement in voltage range and number of speed steps. Aside from the issue of the voltage jumping to 5.0, there are power quality issues caused by either the app or TIU’s hardware. It is as if voltage is decreased using some kind of signal processing that just keeps chopping the wave frequency. At lower voltages, equipment rattles like it is running on 30 Hz AC. I can’t imagine what 0-5 VAC would look like.  But the real dealbreaker is the known latency bug that causes voltage to suddenly surge or drop. MTH has been aware of these issues for some time, along with a slew of other bugs affecting users of the full app’s DCS features, and users of Legacy equipment.  There has been talk of fixing these for a while now. But if you haven’t noticed, they have been focused on the DCS explorer and its issues instead. Hopefully this will soon change. 

Gregr how would one set up a Powermaster (or TPC400 in my case) within the app?  The only thing I can think of is connecting fixed output of TIU into TCP400 then to track and use Cab1 or 2 for conventional. Would DCS pass through that?

I HAVE noticed that on PS1 locos the sound is very choppy on startup not to mention the 5.0v minimum.

Rickw2 posted:

Gregr how would one set up a Powermaster (or TPC400 in my case) within the app?  The only thing I can think of is connecting fixed output of TIU into TCP400 then to track and use Cab1 or 2 for conventional. Would DCS pass through that?

I HAVE noticed that on PS1 locos the sound is very choppy on startup not to mention the 5.0v minimum.

Essentially, you would follow the directions in Barry's book  to connect your TMCC base to the TIU with the appropriate cabling. Then you can address the Powermaster through the MTH DCS app just like you would an engine. On my layout, TMCC ID#1 is my Legacy Powermaster. So, I set up the Powermaster as an engine with ID#1, and then use the speed dial on the app to adjust the voltage. Horn/whistle and bell buttons also work in conventional too.

I am surprised you experience choppiness with your DC motored PS1 engine. Usually, the electronics on DC powered conventional locos smooth out the dirty power. On AC motored equipment with traditional E-units, the TIU's coarse chopped wave variable AC results in a jack-hammer effect on motors and reversing units.

GregR posted:
Rickw2 posted:

Gregr how would one set up a Powermaster (or TPC400 in my case) within the app?  The only thing I can think of is connecting fixed output of TIU into TCP400 then to track and use Cab1 or 2 for conventional. Would DCS pass through that?

I HAVE noticed that on PS1 locos the sound is very choppy on startup not to mention the 5.0v minimum.

Essentially, you would follow the directions in Barry's book  to connect your TMCC base to the TIU with the appropriate cabling. Then you can address the Powermaster through the MTH DCS app just like you would an engine. On my layout, TMCC ID#1 is my Legacy Powermaster. So, I set up the Powermaster as an engine with ID#1, and then use the speed dial on the app to adjust the voltage. Horn/whistle and bell buttons also work in conventional too.

I am surprised you experience choppiness with your DC motored PS1 engine. Usually, the electronics on DC powered conventional locos smooth out the dirty power. On AC motored equipment with traditional E-units, the TIU's coarse chopped wave variable AC results in a jack-hammer effect on motors and reversing units.

I'm missing something here. My TMCC base is connected to the TIU with the special MTH serial cable as per DCS manual. Now where in this mix are you connecting the PowerMaster?

Before getting the TIU, I had a TPC400 connected to the output of the PowerHouse 135 then to the track. And my track was programmed to ID #1. I get all that, but I don't get where you insert the PowerMaster (or TPC400) in the mix with a TIU.

Rickw2 posted:
GregR posted:
Rickw2 posted:

Gregr how would one set up a Powermaster (or TPC400 in my case) within the app?  The only thing I can think of is connecting fixed output of TIU into TCP400 then to track and use Cab1 or 2 for conventional. Would DCS pass through that?

I HAVE noticed that on PS1 locos the sound is very choppy on startup not to mention the 5.0v minimum.

Essentially, you would follow the directions in Barry's book  to connect your TMCC base to the TIU with the appropriate cabling. Then you can address the Powermaster through the MTH DCS app just like you would an engine. On my layout, TMCC ID#1 is my Legacy Powermaster. So, I set up the Powermaster as an engine with ID#1, and then use the speed dial on the app to adjust the voltage. Horn/whistle and bell buttons also work in conventional too.

I am surprised you experience choppiness with your DC motored PS1 engine. Usually, the electronics on DC powered conventional locos smooth out the dirty power. On AC motored equipment with traditional E-units, the TIU's coarse chopped wave variable AC results in a jack-hammer effect on motors and reversing units.

I'm missing something here. My TMCC base is connected to the TIU with the special MTH serial cable as per DCS manual. Now where in this mix are you connecting the PowerMaster?

Before getting the TIU, I had a TPC400 connected to the output of the PowerHouse 135 then to the track. And my track was programmed to ID #1. I get all that, but I don't get where you insert the PowerMaster (or TPC400) in the mix with a TIU.

The setup you describe is correct. Connect your powermaster (or TPC400) exactly the way you did before. You don't need to change anything. Then just add a TMCC engine to the MTH app roster called "Powermaster", with a TMCC ID of 1. If you are already using the MTH DCS app to control TMCC locos, then you can control your TPC or Powermaster in the same way as one of your TMCC engines, except you'll be varying track voltage.

But currently, the output of the PowerHouse is connected directly to the TIU. How would I also connect it to a PowerMaster or TPC400? Then who goes to the track? The TPC400 or TIU? TIU has to go to the track or I don't have any DCS! They can't BOTH go to the track can they?

Still missing something.  

I solved that issue by using the TIU in passive mode. I don’t need any track power passing through it. I power the TIU with the Aux power input. I strictly  use the Powermaster to power the rails. With the TIU in passive mode, you can turn on full voltage on the Powermaster with the Aux 1-9 command, and off with the Aux1-0 command. Or, you can vary the voltage coming out of the Powermaster using either the MTH app or the Lionel Cab2. Either method of control works. I can even switch in the middle of running trains. Or use the app for train operation, and a cab1 for a stationsounds car. Keep in mind that when you power up the track with the Powermaster, you get DCS operation (TIU in passive mode sends watchdog signal when power is first turned on. )

Rickw2 posted:

GREGR, you still haven't said how the TIU and PowerMaster are hooked up at the same time. I don't know what "passive mode" is. You have the TIU powered up via the Aux input but no track power to TIU and TIU connected to the track for DCS how?

To hook up a TIU in passive mode, you connect the outputs of the TIU to the track, for example Fixed 1 Out. You do not connect anything to the TIU Fixed 1 In. The TIU is powered by an Aux adapter. Track power is connected directly to the track, so in this case, the Powermaster is connected directly to the track, not to the TIU. You would connect the Powerhouse to the Powermaster, not the TIU.

George

George S posted:
Rickw2 posted:

GREGR, you still haven't said how the TIU and PowerMaster are hooked up at the same time. I don't know what "passive mode" is. You have the TIU powered up via the Aux input but no track power to TIU and TIU connected to the track for DCS how?

To hook up a TIU in passive mode, you connect the outputs of the TIU to the track, for example Fixed 1 Out. You do not connect anything to the TIU Fixed 1 In. The TIU is powered by an Aux adapter. Track power is connected directly to the track, so in this case, the Powermaster is connected directly to the track, not to the TIU. You would connect the Powerhouse to the Powermaster, not the TIU.

George

Thanks George that's what I was missing! I can do that. I'd like to to get better control of conventional locos and PS1 locos. If I can't do that with DCS right now, I guess I'll have to use my TPC400. You say I can control the TPC400 with the MTH app by addressing it like a TMCC engine? I know I can use Cab1.

And thanks GREGR for all your info.

Rickw2 posted:
George S posted:
Rickw2 posted:

GREGR, you still haven't said how the TIU and PowerMaster are hooked up at the same time. I don't know what "passive mode" is. You have the TIU powered up via the Aux input but no track power to TIU and TIU connected to the track for DCS how?

To hook up a TIU in passive mode, you connect the outputs of the TIU to the track, for example Fixed 1 Out. You do not connect anything to the TIU Fixed 1 In. The TIU is powered by an Aux adapter. Track power is connected directly to the track, so in this case, the Powermaster is connected directly to the track, not to the TIU. You would connect the Powerhouse to the Powermaster, not the TIU.

George

Thanks George that's what I was missing! I can do that. I'd like to to get better control of conventional locos and PS1 locos. If I can't do that with DCS right now, I guess I'll have to use my TPC400. You say I can control the TPC400 with the MTH app by addressing it like a TMCC engine? I know I can use Cab1.

And thanks GREGR for all your info.

I haven't done that with the MTH app. I may try this weekend. I use a ZW-C, which has Powermasters built-in. So, I should be able to do this.

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