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Correct, the original Prodigy had a Dispatch Throttle, sold separately, which was dedicated for controlling turnouts via stationary decoders.
My dad uses two of these systems daisy chained together (they’re designed for that capability) and typically runs 2 sound locos with no problems.
It cannot program more than addresses however, so I second the motion of going for Prodigy Advanced or Express2, or…. Watch for NCE\Digitrax basic systems to go on sale. Sometimes you can find NCE PowerCab systems for $180 or so.

One thing I will say though, but I’m not 100% that it is attributable to MRC or environmental conditions…. He didn’t run his layout for 6 months. Without cleaning track he powered it up and his trains had no pickup problems. I dunno what that says, his basement doesn’t get very dusty or Prodigy kicks out a stronger than usual signal somehow? Beats me. Interesting little tid bi
 
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