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DCC Decoders

David asks:

“I have four N scale Kato locomotives that are NOT DCC-Ready. What brand of decoder is most-used or most-recommended? Does a single decoder control the engine’s movement, light(s), and sound?”

4 Responses to DCC Decoders

  • geoff says:

    I don’t have any recommendations for which decoder to use, but I see from Kato’s website that they use ESU LokSound DCC boards on their DCC ready locomotives.

    As to your other question, yes, a single decoder can do movement, lights and sound. But you need, of course, to add a speaker for the sound.

  • Dave B. says:

    >> But you need, of course, to add a speaker for the sound.

    And there in lies problem where squeeze a speaker. I’ve had good luck using cell phone speakers but that is in HO. Even those can be a tight fit in diesels. At least with steam you can but it n the tender.

  • Gary Stasinowsky says:

    Hi Guys and Girls, with a small layout of 8 x 4 [which is the whole point of having an n scale or z scale layout], can you cheat with the speakers and conceal them in a building in the centre of your layout. The sound still can be controlled cannot it not? and who would know (other than the chief controller, not the fat controller, Tee Hee!!) other than the owner of the small layout. You get the best of both worlds, the trains to play with, and the appropriate noises to go with them. Please note this is a passing thought, as I have not done this, it is purely in my imagination!

    • Geoff says:

      You can get general background sounds, maybe even specific to the loco you are using, but I don’t think you can get anything synchronized to what the loco is doing.

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