Somewhat puzzled by the price differential:

Lionel 1923080 - $ 549.99 (includes BOTH locos plus gold remote)

MTH 20-1807-1 and MTH 30-1808-1 - $479.95 EACH

While I prefer MTH due to the ease in using their DCS, I'm curious as to why Lionel's price is so low. I know it's hard to know as neither of these locos are out yet (MTH expected June 2019 and Lionel's Nov 2019).

paulp575

Original Post

It looks like almost everything is plastic on the lionel engines except the tender trucks.  The lionel ones are also using the lionchief electronics, while mth is using standard dcs for command control.  Also, while ou get two engines for that price from lionel, which is very nice, you do only get one gold colored lionchief universal remote, where as most lionchief purchases comes with one remote per loco.

Both offerings are more traditional toy train sized.  Lionel is also coming out with more scale replica models with legacy electronics, but be prepared to bump up to $1100 a piece.  And even then the electronics are small enough to fit the smoke and sound into the engine and tender so you'll get a beautiful model of the original engines that doesn't smoke and you'll need an extra sound car if you want to hear anything.

As always it will all come down to preference and budget.  Lionchief gets you the most loco's for your buck, but no command control to if you are trying to integrate into an existing control scheme other than conventional.  MTh will get you dcs control and all the associated bells and whistles (literally) but still be a little more toy like in proportions in order to get everything shoe horned inside.

Lionel legacy will look great but, in my opinion only, be more of a show piece than an operator piece if sound and smoke is your bag.

 

If you pull the trigger on something please post pictures.

 

JHZ563

May God Bless us all.

Question: Aren't the Lionel locos in this series based on the current Lionel "General" tooling and design? Which, if memory serves, have had some complaints in the last few years about quality, etc?  Or are these new and improved in some way?

Anybody know?

TCA, LCCA

Night and day, you really do get what you pay for in this case.  The MTH entry is a diecast full PS/3 with fan driven smoke, great sound, cruise control, DCC, etc.  The Lionel models are plastic LC with mechanical smoke and LC sound.

If I'm interested in these, I plunk out the MTH bucks and get a much better locomotive.

BTW, I hope Lionel fixes this before they ship theirs!

  • RailSounds RC sound system with diesel revving and background sounds, bell and user-activated announcements
Grampstrains posted:
jhz563 posted:

It looks like almost everything is plastic on the lionel engines except the tender trucks.  The lionel ones are also using the lionchief electronics, while mth is using standard dcs for command control.  Also, while ou get two engines for that price from lionel, which is very nice, you do only get one gold colored lionchief universal remote, where as most lionchief purchases comes with one remote per loco.

Both offerings are more traditional toy train sized.  Lionel is also coming out with more scale replica models with legacy electronics, but be prepared to bump up to $1100 a piece.  And even then the electronics are small enough to fit the smoke and sound into the engine and tender so you'll get a beautiful model of the original engines that doesn't smoke and you'll need an extra sound car if you want to hear anything.

As always it will all come down to preference and budget.  Lionchief gets you the most loco's for your buck, but no command control to if you are trying to integrate into an existing control scheme other than conventional.  MTh will get you dcs control and all the associated bells and whistles (literally) but still be a little more toy like in proportions in order to get everything shoe horned inside.

Lionel legacy will look great but, in my opinion only, be more of a show piece than an operator piece if sound and smoke is your bag.

 

If you pull the trigger on something please post pictures.

 

JHZ563

One universal remote will control three engines.  No need for two.

There is a need for two if you want to control each smoothly without having to toggle back and forth.  

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Night and day, you really do get what you pay for in this case.  The MTH entry is a diecast full PS/3 with fan driven smoke, great sound, cruise control, DCC, etc.  The Lionel models are plastic LC with mechanical smoke and LC sound.

If I'm interested in these, I plunk out the MTH bucks and get a much better locomotive.

BTW, I hope Lionel fixes this before they ship theirs!

  • RailSounds RC sound system with diesel revving and background sounds, bell and user-activated announcements

Sad when they dont even care enough to proof read their catalogs etc....

"why Lionel's price is so low."

As noted, diecast vs. plastic bodies lowers the cost of production. LionChief electronics use off the shelf parts, I believe,  which almost certainly keep production costs substantially lower as compared with Legacy or PS3.

The LionChief system is a command  system.  You cannot control LionChief locos with TMCC/Legacy/DCS or conventional methods, true. However, LionChief locos work well, if independently with a separate remote,  with layouts using other command methods or even conventional layouts,  if you are careful

It is easier and less expensive to integrate a LionChief loco into various layout approaches (DCS, Legacy/TMCC, conventional) than it is to integrate a PS3 loco into a Legacy/TMCC layout, or a conventional layout, as examples.  You still have command capabilities with the LionChief, even on the conventional layout.  With a conventional layout, you'll need DCS to get command capabilities of the MTH locos, and running conventional locos and PS3 locos on the same loop/block is not easily done.  The LionChief loco will operate independently and well on the same loop/block on  a DCS/TMCC/Legacy/conventional layout with any of those locomotive types.  It's a feature, not a bug .  Perhaps not a point relevant to everyone, for sure, but relevant to some.

My perspective is that from someone has ordered the LionChief models, and decided against  the scale models. Also, I don't operate DCS, so that factors in my decision making.

Well, we'll have to agree to disagree how "well" the LionChief stuff works.  With limited speed steps, no cruise, one chuff per rev, and a cheap mechanical smoke unit that barely puts out any smoke, it's hardly a comparison to the MTH models.  Did I miss the much better sound, electrocouplers, much better lighting, etc.?

If we were talking about the LionChief Plus models, it would be a closer comparison...

Trainmaster04 posted:
david1 posted:

There is only one choice and that is the MTH version IMO. 

If your buying the Lionel scale version please ignore the above.

Dave

Too late, I got the Lionel 119 and the cars on May 10th.  

How about a review? Pictures?  Thanks.

TCA, LCCA

In spite of the cost difference, I'm planning on purchasing the MTH version (both locos as separate items).

If there's an option between Lionel and MTH, I've generally purchased the MTH - primarily because of their price. While I recognize price COULD make a difference in quality, I haven't seen where the quality is lesser on the MTH models (although I'm by far no expert on quality), but the details on the MTH items are really good.

paulp575

In this case, there's truly no contest, the quality and features of the MTH PS/3 versions will be far and away better than the Lionel LC models.

johnstrains posted:
Trainmaster04 posted:
david1 posted:

There is only one choice and that is the MTH version IMO. 

If your buying the Lionel scale version please ignore the above.

Dave

Too late, I got the Lionel 119 and the cars on May 10th.  

How about a review? Pictures?  Thanks.

So far I am blown away by the amount of work that Lionel has put into the brass hybrid models so far. I love that Lionel has been really careful on what they are putting on the engines and that they are working with historians. Am I a little down on the fact that there is no smoke or sound in the engines. Yes I am a little, but in general this is going to be the only time when they are going to be coming out. Also, just a note to everyone. If you get an engine and want to pull some cars, you have to get the passenger cars. Meaning, the tenders do not have your sate of the art knuckle couplers. Instead Lionel put a pin coupler on instead. (Note: they also said that you will be able to convert the pin coupler with a scale coupler.) Over all, how could I not say no when this is a once in a lifetime chance.

You can find photos of all the engines/cars available at this link to Lionel: https://www.lionelstore.com/category/American-4-4-0     

Trainmaster04 posted:

So far I am blown away by the amount of work that Lionel has put into the brass hybrid models so far. I love that Lionel has been really careful on what they are putting on the engines and that they are working with historians. Am I a little down on the fact that there is no smoke or sound in the engines. Yes I am a little, but in general this is going to be the only time when they are going to be coming out. Also, just a note to everyone. If you get an engine and want to pull some cars, you have to get the passenger cars. Meaning, the tenders do not have your sate of the art knuckle couplers. Instead Lionel put a pin coupler on instead. (Note: they also said that you will be able to convert the pin coupler with a scale coupler.) Over all, how could I not say no when this is a once in a lifetime chance.

You can find photos of all the engines/cars available at this link to Lionel: https://www.lionelstore.com/category/American-4-4-0     

Apples and oranges, this thread is about the Lionel LC versions and the MTH PS/3 versions, not the hybrid locomotives. 

You're in the wrong pew, the hybrid pew is two rows up and to the left.

Not so much disagreement as different tastes and priorities.  Don't use smoke, it's potentially bad for lungs.  Don't care about chuff rates as long as the sound is reasonable.  Speed control is nice, but not essential.  My experience with PS2 was that it was quite quirky .  PS3 may be less so, don't know personally.  Prefer less quirkiness than I experienced with DCS, or for that matter with PS1.  What I do know and prefer is that LionChief is largely bulletproof and adaptable, and those are key priorities for me.  Not a scale modeler in any case.

Trainmaster04 posted:
david1 posted:

There is only one choice and that is the MTH version IMO. 

If your buying the Lionel scale version please ignore the above.

Dave

Too late, I got the Lionel 119 and the cars on May 10th.  

Btw i I did not ask you or anybody else to respond when I posted.

The OP asked about the the Lion chief set and the premier set of 4-4-0's from  MTH. The scale brass hybrid is not in the equation. 

For those who can afford the brass hybrid, great but there are many of us who cannot so I will I buy the MTH version. It will be best IMO of the two sets we are talking about. 

Now if Lionel upgrades thier set to LC plus 2 with Bluetooth then I may think about it but I'm not holding my breath. 

Dave

 

 

 

 

I ordered the Lionel double General loco set. For the price, I get both the Promontory locos (CP & UP) which will go with traditional Lionel General style passenger cars of which I have a few. I also am getting the MTH Central Pacific old time passenger 3-car set to run with the Jupiter.

And the  Promontory commemorative box cars were just released by Lionel. Got those also. 

So, I’m all set!

Landsteiner posted:

Not so much disagreement as different tastes and priorities.  Don't use smoke, it's potentially bad for lungs.  Don't care about chuff rates as long as the sound is reasonable.  Speed control is nice, but not essential. 

As long as you're willing to live with all those limitations, I guess LC works for you.  I'm not willing to live with those, not to mention that the PS/3 sound will be vastly superior to the LC sound as well.  The difference in quality is simply too great for me to ignore.

Truthfully, I think you're likely in a minority here unless I seriously don't understand the audience here.

gunrunnerjohn posted:
Landsteiner posted:

Not so much disagreement as different tastes and priorities.  Don't use smoke, it's potentially bad for lungs.  Don't care about chuff rates as long as the sound is reasonable.  Speed control is nice, but not essential. 

As long as you're willing to live with all those limitations, I guess LC works for you.  I'm not willing to live with those, not to mention that the PS/3 sound will be vastly superior to the LC sound as well.  The difference in quality is simply too great for me to ignore.

Truthfully, I think you're likely in a minority here unless I seriously don't understand the audience here.

You are entirely correct in your assessment of the forum members, but we all enjoy the hobby in our own way. I am on the “toy” side of things myself, as my previous comments here make clear. Each to his own. 

gunrunnerjohn posted:

Well, we'll have to agree to disagree how "well" the LionChief stuff works.  With limited speed steps, no cruise, one chuff per rev, and a cheap mechanical smoke unit that barely puts out any smoke, it's hardly a comparison to the MTH models.  Did I miss the much better sound, electrocouplers, much better lighting, etc.?

If we were talking about the LionChief Plus models, it would be a closer comparison...

Which makes me wonder why Lionel didn't make these with LC+ or even LC+2.0. 

I know there's a market for the plain LC stuff, but I'd think it would be strictly entry stuff.  OTOH, with all the publicity surrounding the Golden Spike Anniversary, perhaps the general public will buy enough of them for it to make sense.  After all, the plain LC set market isn't really targeting folks like us for the most part.

I'm getting a set of the Lionel LC 4-4-0's even though my layout is more scale like.  Why?  Because I like them, love the paint schemes, and will use them primarily for display.  The MTH ones are nearly twice as expensive, and I've never liked their looks anyway, and the hybrids are way too pricey for something that won't see much use.  

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