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Slot City
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The general consensus is that the SCX Digital system is expensive. Whilst it is compared to non-digital systems, I'm not so sure when compared to other digital systems.

I haven't received detailed pricing for all the Carrera digital products yet, so I can only compare SCX with Scalextric - and the price difference is actually not that big, if there is one at all.

If you look at the lane change sections, a lot of the price differences disappear. The Scalextric ones cost £20 but only allow you to change from one lane to the other, whilst the SCX ones cost £13 but allow you to change from either lane to the other. So if you compare like for like, this means each lane change point costs £6.50 with SCX and £20 with Scalextric.

When you compare the two sets, you'd have to buy an extra 6 lane change track sections (at £20 each) for the Scalextric set to have the same number of lane change points as the SCX set. This leaves the sets costing the same - SCX @ £275, Scalextric @ £270 (£150 + £120) except you get 3 cars with SCX rather than 2.

Add on the extra borders (which you do really need) and lap counter with the SCX set, and it starts to look a possibly better value option. Though this is obviously offset somewhat by the SCX cars costing an extra £10, as well as various other differences in prices in accessories.

This also ignores the compatibility and other differences between the two systems. But I just wanted to make the point that SCX is not as expensive as you might think.

Jon,
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Thanks Jon. Some sound points there regarding price and functionality. Personaly my main problem with the SCX system is the design of the LC section. I just don`t want the short X which I found to cause too much crashing.
 

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Slot City
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I don't think the short x lane change section is an issue in itself, the problem is more the size of the circuit. Having lane change sections so close to each other makes things a bit manic, to say the least.

I've tried all the digital systems, and personally I prefer the SCX lane change sections. I don't think they are any worse than the Scalextric ones.

Wouldn't a double length lane change section cause more crashes, as the length of track where cars cross is even longer? The cross over happens in a far shorter space on SCX.

Jon,
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QUOTE (jonny s @ 18 Aug 2004, 09:04)I just don`t want the short X which I found to cause too much crashing.
The thing is I want to buy the scalextric system - but won't until they
bring out a short X system ..........


I like many others want a to be able to change lanes just going into
tight tricky areas , or coming out of bends to try an overtake - with the
scalextric corner lane changes - its just not possible to do that.

Any lane change / cross over on a track is a potential crash - what they
need is a lock out system , which would be quite simple - put a sensor under the
track a certain distance from the lane change , then only allow the change
if a certain distance is between the two cars.

I experimented with something similair but for a normal lane change (non digital)
that cut the power to the second car if they were two close and it worked very
well , was just two photosensors and a small PIC processor.

Chris
 

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Slot City
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I don't understand the fuss over the extra crashes with digital.

Crashes, and avoiding them, are part and parcel of racing cars.

How boring would Formula 1, NASCAR, DTM etc be if they imposed a rule which said you were only allowed to over take once you were a certain distance in front of the other car?

Avoiding a crash is in both cars interests, and the extra skill involved will just add another angle to slot car racing.

Jon,
Slot City.
 

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Having experienced the SCX system last night, courtesy of Slotcity, I can say that I didn't have an issue with the lane changers. Sure, accidents will happen (name the artist) but only because drivers will want to change at the same time; whether it is a long or short crossover, they are likely to collide if the Gods are against them.

Accidents, in an increased number, are an inherent 'feature' of digital as marketed by the big players.

I can see the sense of elements of the two systems. It strikes me that Hornby have it right in that you can chip a car but SCX have the better approach with the lane changer - that three car set gives you four places on each short lap to change lane - that means accidents a go-go but not much waiting to have a stab.
 

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To be honest the discussion should be about which system offers better long term value. Somebody new buying into digital is likely to want to have an extended relationship with the hobby and this will be a question that will be pondered over by potential customers.

Also, think about the future residuals of each system. Somebody purchasing a BMW Mini convertible is very astute from this point of view. It is actually a much better investment as a car than a basic Ford Fiesta. Low entry cost does not necessarily represent the best investment.

The systems are different and future developement paths may well be very different.

It will be a much clearer picture come December 25th when Father Xmas will have made up his mind on behalf of little Jonny.

There is no doubt in my mind that stockists will be selling SCX Digital sets to UK customers. What will be interesting will be in what proportion they sell relative to the SCX analogue sets and the nature of the sales patter used when chatting to customers about the differences.

There is a big learning curve here for everybody concerned.

Those enlightened stockists who are prepared to allow customers to try out digital and maybe even have a permanent display set up deserve every success.


Moped
 

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Some good points concerning the LC. It`s good that there is choice which means we can all be kept happy? My preference at the mo is the Hornby system as I just found changing lane going into a curve preferable to the X which by design does bring two cars together to impact.

The crashing aspect is an issue, it was to us at the Toy fair and we found it didn`t happen as much on Scaley Digital. This was reinforced when we used the demo set (courtesy of Sean) at the Phoenix GT meet. If the X was extended and more gradual there would simply be less crashing which will always be a big issue on a short two lane circuit with six cars on it.

As this thread is about value for money it should be acknowledged that Jon did a good job, offering the break down of costs and comparison. You do seem to get a lot for your money as described above. I think that the marketing of Digital will be crucial to the introduction and implementation phases,especialy in Uk. I read and have been told by SCX that their system didn`t go down too well in Spain and believe that over here (G.B.) many will await the Hornby release and perhaps Ninco too to make a comparison.
 

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QUOTE . . . which system offers better long term value. Somebody new buying into digital is likely to want to have an extended relationship with the hobby and this will be a question that will be pondered over by potential customers.
I don't believe that the 'average' set buyer gives any thought whatsoever to long term value. The vast majority of sets are impulse buys or Christmas/Birthday presents, without benefit of brain power. That is why the vast majority of sets are dumped and forgotten about within a very short space of time. I see no reason why a digital choice would affect this thinking, or rather lack of thinking, in the slightest.
Of course there will be a few exceptions, there always are, but very few indeed.

QUOTE Also, think about the future residuals of each system.
Good grief!
Does anyone actually know ANYONE who buys a slot car set for its 'future residuals'!

People buy them for F U N!
Who could possibly have an inkling what residuals will be.
Come on Mop, give us the benefit of your idefatigible crystal balls and apprise us of the percentage losses to be expected for all the digital systems.
This should be truly edifying!
 

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very good points Tropi. I bought a GT40 set and the goodwood GT40s, and expected that would be it for me forever. I assumed I would be selling/putting the track in the attic in a few months from purchase date - keeping the cars as shelf queens.

With digital, Scalextric seems to be marketing sets with a lower price tag than SCX, and I think this will win out more than the long term residuals (wd40 on the carpet?) even if they actually offer similar vaue. Unlike supermarkets which have to quote kg/£ on every item, toy shops are not required by law to state crossovers/£
 

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QUOTE To be honest the discussion should be about which system offers better long term value
What utter carp! Just because you buy and sell old stuff mop it doesn't mean everyone buys slot cars as investments!

Why can't we just appreciate how much fun they are to play with - I mean, that is what we are doing at the end of the day! From what I can see, and I must admit to not having vast experience with either, the SCX one seems like more fun as the lane changing tracks change both ways, whereas the Scalextric ones are only in one direction. I realise that costs and availability of cars and accessories etc may come into it, but I would bet that Mr.Smith and little Johnny probably don't have plans for dozens of cars. I suspect (although I have no facts to back this up and so it is only my opinion) that the majority of households that have a slot car track do not have more than six cars. If that is the case, then it won't matter too much on compatibility either!

The whole point is to have fun surely?

Aaron
 

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Hmmm. Only the likes of the delinquents that hang around here are likely to be buying in with a view to the future and we aren't enough to pay a weeks worth of R and D on this toy.

The main game is with UK Jonny's dad at Crimbo.

I see where you are coming from with your preference on the X or Y(?) lane changers, Jonny; but surely both are bringing cars into the path of one another?

The three car SCX set we played with probably gave too much choice to change - the cars were blurring round and you (I) couldn't get my tired little brain to think about lane changing until I had passed it. It was too frantic, three cars, four lane changers and all the accidents.

The Hornby set would probably frustrate in an opposite way - not giving enough choice.

Sheesh. You can't please some folk.
 

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Jim Moyes
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And his Dad was?
 

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Dont know who his dad was but, I'm sorry you are just going to wait until the Carrera Digital is launched before you make you minds up on this one! But for what its worth here are the Results, He He

Germany 6 England 3

Spain 2 Germany 6
 

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Certainly a large proportion of slot car sets are impulse buys but these are likely to be the lower cost sets. The premium sets are less likely to be bought on impulse and I would classify digital as being in the premium arena.

Digital sets are going to appear on the shelves at Toys R Us and in the catalogues at Argos, etc. and the punter will only have the packaging to persuade him/her to purchase a digital set over an analogue set. Lane changing and multi car racing is all that needs to be said really on the packaging from this point of view.

The likes of Slot City, Pendle, MRE, Getslotted, etc, will be "selling" the benefits of digital having personal contact with the customer and possibly with customers having or wanting to gain a higher level of slot car knowledge. A higher percentage of their customers are going to be the commited slot car racers who may have sourced a set from above and have taken the trouble to do research into finding a specialist stockist.

Whilst accepting that the prime reason for purchasing a set is fun, folk are far more "Ebay wise/car boot wise" than they were a few years ago and are far more likely to dispose of unwanted kit these days rather than store it in the loft given that young Jonny (or even old Jonny) is not hooked long term. They might get back 50% or more of their purchase costs in the case of a Scalextric set up in the secondhand arena but what chance is there of getting anything back for an SCX digital set up in the UK?


It is certainly a factor in my thinking when I make a purchase and so it will be on the mind of others no doubt.


Moped
 

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I wonder how many of Jon's customers are putting orders in for 2 Scalextric Digital sets?


When considering digital this does appear to make good sense. It does not seem to work so well if you order 2 SCX Digital sets but that still seems like a very good idea even with the SCX system.

SCX Digital track, aside from the crossover, does seem the be priced higher so any plans to extend an SCX circuit could be expensive.


Moped

PS By the way Slotcity have actually sold at least 1 SCX DTM Digital set as it features in their bestsellers list!


And here is the list of accessories sold thus far:-

01. (SCX 20060) Electronic Hand Throttle (SCX Digital)
02. (SCX 20030) Changeover Track (SCX Digital)
03. (SCX 25000) Control Unit (SCX Digital)
04. (SCX 25010) Lap Counter Expansion Module (SCX Digital)

Who said SCX Digital would not sell!
 

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I agree with Wankel about the SCX system , in the end I couldn`t be bothered either. Point of fact `Gary the Phone` stayed in the same lane all the time and won our race at the Toy fair!

For some reason there were a lot less crashes with the LC on the curve. Mostly because one car had the edge going into the curve and so remained slightly ahead at the point of switching and unlike SCX two or more cars cannot occupy the same space taken up on the crucial part of the LC. The other reason appeared to be due to the awesome speed of change on Scaley that only effected the one car no matter how close they were. With SCX I found the response time in mechanical LC movement much slower. This isn`t to say thast LC on the curve is best, the Davic system looks to have a much longer stretch of LC on a straight.
 
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