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Discussion Starter #1
I purchased a SB5, and an UTP panel. The question I have, is the flat cable that came with the powercab, can I use that between the booster and the UTP panel(until I can buy or if I can get a clear understanding, make my own cables)? I know I have to use my 4 wire coiled cable between the UTP and the "powercab" controller (which becomes a procab in this case). I am wondering, because the flat is a 6 wire cable versus a 4 wire cable like the coil. This is what I am confused about if someone could instruct? I am thinking I can, but just want to be sure.

I plan on making my own cables in the future, but this is my first time with a booster..

Thanks for any and all input....

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i believe you can. the outer 2 wires on the cable provide a connection between the PowerCab and the track on the PTP.

While they are daisey chained on the UTP, i don't believe they are used by either the SB5 or the ProCab.
 

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Thanks. I watched a ton of video and viewed schematics, and all seemed to use the 6 on cables. I just did not see anything that "specifically" said, do or do not, that is why I was asking. They all just say the "cab bus cable". But oh well, I guess it's good enough to try it. I may call nce on Monday also, just to be sure.

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I am seriously considering adding the Smart Booster to my system too. Three sound equipped locomotives and a fourth without seems to be taxing my Powercab.

After sitting Br.120 on the rails and plugging in the power supply, Br.187 started stuttering on the rails, lost it's programming, and so did the other three.

Removing any sound locomotive from the rails alleviates the problem.

I'll be adding DCC turnout control within a day, and the signalling will also be drawing DCC power, as little as that is.

Does the Powercab now get plugged into the Smart Booster instead of the facia panel?

NCE seems to be lacking in clear documentation on a lot of their product ad copy.
 

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I am seriously considering adding the Smart Booster to my system too. Three sound equipped locomotives and a fourth without seems to be taxing my Powercab.
function 8 disables sound on many decoders. Does it also reduce power consumption?u

I'll be adding DCC turnout control within a day, and the signalling will also be drawing DCC power, as little as that is.
why not get a wall wart for powering accessories like signals?

Does the Powercab now get plugged into the Smart Booster instead of the facia panel?
Not sure if the PTP should be replaced with a UTP which the Smart booster connects to via the connectors in the back. A PowerCab plugged into a UTP should recognize the cabbus signals from the SB5 and behave as a PowerPro.

The one jack on the PTP connects the outer two wire to track which are used by the PowerCab as a PowerCab.

NCE seems to be lacking in clear documentation on a lot of their product ad copy.
https://ncedcc.zendesk.com/hc/en-us
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I am seriously considering adding the Smart Booster to my system too. Three sound equipped locomotives and a fourth without seems to be taxing my Powercab.



After sitting Br.120 on the rails and plugging in the power supply, Br.187 started stuttering on the rails, lost it's programming, and so did the other three.



Removing any sound locomotive from the rails alleviates the problem.



I'll be adding DCC turnout control within a day, and the signalling will also be drawing DCC power, as little as that is.



Does the Powercab now get plugged into the Smart Booster instead of the facia panel?



NCE seems to be lacking in clear documentation on a lot of their product ad copy.
You know, I was in the same boat with my considering and how many locos I keep parked with sound and lights, etc.. Well, not saying anything bad about the powercab at all, but at least it runs better on mine,with the booster. That is extremely evident (was pretty much instantly). My S2 runs at much lower speeds stably.

And the way it goes, and I don't think I went into detail even on my thread. But, the powercab power supply isn't used at all (neither is the bus jack that plugs into the back of the powercab panel, as there is a new one that comes with the SB5). You take your bus to the main layout, plug that into the front of the SB5, then, take the flat cable, and that goes between the powercab panel and one of the two bus jacks in the front(right hand side) of the SB5. Then, the coiled cable connected to the powercab (now, with the booster functions as a procab) goes into either of the two front backs on the powercab panel (pcp). You can, like me, run it this way, until you can pick up an UTP panel. There is a schematic under "reusing a pcp".

But once you get the UTP, you simply plug the flat cable into the jack on the back of the UTP that is labeled cab bus. Then, once again plug your cab with the coiled cable into the front of the UTP. You can then, use the other jack on the back of the UTP for daisy chaining UTP's and other cab bus items. You will need extra cables for the additional items, so you can purchase them, or make your own cables. I'm going to try and do the latter.

To get the cab back up and running, your going to need (this, if course is after you have the UTP) another 6 pin/6 wire cable (another flat cable basically) and you them re set up the powercab panel with the power supply and the flat cable, swapping the cab use, as you can disconnect the cab from the booster/main system, and things will continue running, so you can do your programming on the programming /test track (the powercab setup). Basically, in the end, you have 2 systems...

Hopefully this makes sense as like you said, some of their documentation is lacking imho... Lol

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Discussion Starter #11
A wall wart doesn't provide the logic used to run the signals.
That, and it's much less cluttered.. That's just me. It's much easier, albeit, it requires a bit more thought up front. That's especially after you begin using multiple of those switch machines. I couldn't imagine going back to the wall warts. That is one decision I don't regret one bit.

And think at last count, I have 52 led diodes(not counting the leds in any of the locomotives, and every single one of the locos has led) in the layout(houses, street lamps, crossing signals, etc, all controlled and powered via accessory decoders (Light It's: very handy little devices). It would have( looking back on the decision to go the accessory decoder versus wall wart{s}) been, and was a pain in the rear to do wall warts even in the small scale I am dealing with. , Just like anything else, the dcc signal and power is easier to deal with, and customize, as it doesn't decay over relatively short distances. It has also proved to be very, very reliable and flexible for effects, if I feel like it.. Not to mention control over powering up, shutting down, and controlling the exact brightness, of every single item, as each has an address, and the address logic(database sheet via MS Excel, and when the time comes, I think it will be easier to go directly into the JMRI/Panel Pro scenerio)..

I don't mess with them often, but you have the flexibility to do so as you wish.. Flexibility, control, and scalability you don't have with a wall wart. I would say for someone who is just beginning with accessories, yes, a wart is a good thing to begin with. But for a full layout, where you want different aspects and controls, there really is no comparison.. And yes, it takes time, but so does the wart approach, without any of the benefits... Not to mention it's cheaper in the long run!

Not to mention, as I think about it, I don't have a single analog bulb in the layout. I even changed the bumpers to led a while back.. Hmmnnn... Well, anyhow, that's my argument and experience against wall warts for your accessories.

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