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Thread: Cannot rest ESU decoder

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    Default Cannot rest ESU decoder

    Cannot reset ESU decoder.

    I just received a Kato UP E9B unit with pre-installed ESU decoder (no sound). I tried to change the address from the default 3 to a 4 digit address and to set a consist address using Decoder Pro. Now the engine only runs on the consist address, not the 4 digit address (which reads back correctly) and I have tried to reset the decoder by changing CV8 to 8. When I try this, I get a Fail message on my throttle (Digitrax) and on Decoder Pro it won’t let me change the entry for CV 8 (whereas I can for all the other CVs). Any ideas?

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    I think - I'm not at home right now so can't check - there is a "Reset Decoder" button somewhere in DecoderPro that does just that (write 8 to CV8) in the background. You can't write to the CV normally because it does not change it's value. Maybe that also explains why the Digitrax system can't change it. And/or maybe it can only be changed in certain programming modes, particularly I could imagine that it does not work in Programming on the Main/OPS mode programming but only on the programming track to avoid some runaway DCC system resetting all locos on the layout.

    Another idea: Change the consist address back to 0 (or to 128) which disables consist mode and you should be able to run it with it's 4 digit address again. Both are mutually exclusive, you can't have the loco respond to both the 4-digit address and the consist address at the same time.*

    HTH,
    Heiko

    *To be precise, many decoders have CVs to choose whether functions should respond to the consist address or the base address, so the above is only true for motor control.

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    "It's not whats best......It's whats best for you"

    Gary

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    I had lots of little issues programming ESU decoders until I got the ESU LokProgrammer. DecoderPro doesn’t read and write everything well enough for my tastes. It caused more issues than it fixed. Do you know someone with a LokProgrammer you can try out?
    Karl

    CEO of the Skally Line, an Eastern MN Shortline

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    Re-emphasize:
    If the consist CV19 is other than zero, the decoder will not respond to the 4-digit address. It will only respond to the value in CV19.
    Reset CV19 to "0" to have the decoder respond to the 4 digit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danb View Post
    Cannot reset ESU decoder.

    I just received a Kato UP E9B unit with pre-installed ESU decoder (no sound). I tried to change the address from the default 3 to a 4 digit address and to set a consist address using Decoder Pro. Now the engine only runs on the consist address, not the 4 digit address (which reads back correctly) and I have tried to reset the decoder by changing CV8 to 8. When I try this, I get a Fail message on my throttle (Digitrax) and on Decoder Pro it won’t let me change the entry for CV 8 (whereas I can for all the other CVs). Any ideas?
    I have tons of issues programming my ESU with Digitrax. Basically I can't do it.
    I'd love any recommendations short of buying a programmer or entirely new DCC system. Thanks!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by jayareed View Post
    I have tons of issues programming my ESU with Digitrax. Basically I can't do it.
    I'd love any recommendations short of buying a programmer or entirely new DCC system. Thanks!!
    Well, I hate to say it, but if you are seriously going to play in the ESU sandbox (e.g., you have more than one or two ESU-equipped locos), you need the LokProgrammer. Sorry, but that's just the way it is. It's about $140, or less than the cost of a sound-equipped diesel. And since nearly everything new today (from Atlas, IM, Fox Valley, etc. - except Bachmann and BLI) has ESU LokSound decoders as the sound option, it is the route to take if you plan on buying sound-equipped locos in the future.

    But I use a Digitrax Chief system, and I can program LokSound decoders just fine with it, using DT402 throttle or Decoder Pro hooked up via a PR3 to my computer. But even though it works, for any serious programming I use the LokProgrammer. Faster, easier, better.

    John C.

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    I managed to reset the decoder but would consider the ESU programmer for ease of programming if it worked with Macs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danb View Post
    I managed to reset the decoder but would consider the ESU programmer for ease of programming if it worked with Macs.
    Yes, the LokProgrammer software is Windows-only. But I installed an OEM version of Windows 7 on a bootcamp partition on my Macbook just for this purpose, and it works fine. I'm told you can also run it in a Windows VM over the MacOS, but I've never tried this.

    At the end of the day, it just depends on what you want to do. Altering the 3-point speed curve (CV's 2, 5 & 6) or adjusting momentum (CV's 3 and 4) is easy and can be done with any DCC system on a programming track or via Ops mode (programming on the main). Adjusting the master volume (CV63) is also easy. But if you want to play with lighting effects, do function key remapping, change the volume of individual sounds (e.g., lower the volume of the prime mover while leaving the horn on full blast) or program the Advanced Consist function CV's, you need some other tool. JMRI''s Decoder Pro is effective, if slow (reading the function mapping table from a LokSound via JMRI takes between 20-30 minutes - yes, minutes - and you can't change anything until you've read your specific decoder's default values). The LokProgrammer makes all this much faster and foolproof (I sometimes get read/write errors when trying to do programming via JMRI; eventually it works, but not without effort).

    There's an old saying: "I used to have more time than money; now I have more money than time." I invested $140 in my LokProgrammer and another $35 for a copy of Windows to run on my MacBook back in 2013, when I knew I'd be converting my entire locomotive fleet (about 40 diesels and 15 steamers) over to ESU. In the past five years, the LokProgrammer has not only saved me hundreds of hours of time, it has also made possible the updating of early sound files with new features that came out later (e.g., Full Throttle). You can't update an ESU sound file if you don't have a LokProgrammer. So for me the investment was clearly worth it, and I think anyone who is going to have more than a couple of ESU-equipped locos just needs to realize that the LokProgrammer is essential to do any programming beyond the simplest speed-curve and momentum changes. Yes, it's annoying to have to invest another $140 in hardware and then find a way to run Windows if you're a Mac OS user, but if you amortize that investment over the number of hours saved, it's a tiny amount per hour. I could save money by driving slower and getting better gas mileage, too, but I don't. I've reached the point where time is more valuable.

    John C.

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