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42 Yrs
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Hi slot racers one and all....

This bank holiday weekend I have broken down my oval layout and with a 4 car powerbase, C7030 PBpro V1.5 and a C7042 APB I go for Christmas I have been testing what was best for me for my new layout. Doing that made me realise what a minefield it is at the moment and thought it might be good to share my thoughts on what the new powerbase can do for different users and whether they should upgrade or not.

These are just my conclusions based on the options I see available to me, cut me down in flames or follow my advice the choice is yours but they are my opinions based on a lot of testing.

I'm an analogue user... What will it do for me.

Well this is an expensive upgrade for you but it will bring a lot to your slot racing... with the powerbase (£100) two C7024 power supplies (£70) two digital throttles (£30) that is a £200 investment...

What do you get for Your money????

Well first of all you get lap counting, timing and several race modes to add some spice to your racing.
You have independent power supply to each lane for smooth racing
Configurable Track calls to slow or stop the race when a car deslots and false start detection
Pace cars giving solo racers a drone car to race against
Easy change of direction of racing round the track and supports drift type cars without problems
You dont need to chip any of your cars

If you buy the new cable from Riko and upgrade the firmware to version 1.04 you can then connect to SSD Console for full Lap reporting and Timing on your PC!

Best of all if you decide that you want to move to digital you can buy a four chips and a couple of straight lane changers for about £100 and go fully digital and switch easily between digital races and analogue races without having to remove the lane changers from the layout.

Go Buy one today its the best advance in Scalextric analogue in years!

I have a 4 Car powerbase should I get a C7042 or a C7030...

If you are already digital with a 4 car Powerbase then it is probably cheaper for you to go with the new advanced powerbase. You will need the powerbase (£100) and one more C7042 (£35) making a total investment of £135. Compared to buying a C7030, getting it upgraded to PBPro +SH & Dual analogue, a lap tower and power supply, total cost around £350 the new powerbase looks like the best option.

The C7042 will give you access to all the powerbase features such as

Lap counting, timing and several race modes to add some spice to your racing.
You have independent power supply to each lane for smooth racing
Configurable Track calls to slow or stop the race when a car deslots and false start detection
Pace cars giving solo racers a drone car to race against
The ability to race with analogue cars and test and race Club cars like NSR's and Slot is at home without chipping them.

With a bit more investment though you can really add to the fun, if you have a PC or laptop you can add SSDC console and Pit pro to your layout this will set you back about £100 but adds a whole new dimension to the racing and you will never look back.

I Have a PBpro V1.5 Build 1.8f but its not got Simple H What should I do...

To Buy a C7042 (£100) and two C7024 power supplies will set you back a total £170... The feature set of the new powerbase is identical to the software you already have in the C7030 in real terms... You already have single analogue drive capability so just buy a laptower from RichG... You then have twin displays (one on the powerbase for programming and the lap tower for timings) the RichG laptower is streets ahead of the Scalextric one in so many ways... If you dont need the twin analogue function get a laptower and stick with what you have.

If you want dual analogue Drive to get your Powerbase to twin analogue with simple H and a lap tower and a decent PSU will cost you £300. To buy the new APB C7042 with 2 x C7024will cost £170 and you can sell your old powerbase to cover some of the cost... If dual analogue is important to you then Its probably best to change to the new powerbase.

If you already have a pit pro and SSDC things change a bit. If you get the dual analogue mod done all your existing PC setup and Leads will work... If you get the new APB it will cost you £20 to upgrade to SSDC V5, and another £30 for the lead to the new powerbase... so the cost differential is not that great... (£80) Personally I would stick with the C7030 get simple H Dual Analogue and a laptower as the simple H power delivery is so much better and the laptower is so much prettier and you have twin displays... The Guys will support you for years to come... No need to change.

I Have a PBpro with simple H and good PSU what should I do...
This is a no brainer... get Riko to do the dual analogue mod and buy a laptower if you don't already have one... it will be cheaper for you than changing to a C7042 and you have all the greatest Scalextric bits ever made... Look down on those APB owners and laugh... Knowing that you had that software years ago, you have all the features, better power delivery, a laptower you can see in the dark and a separate programming display on the powerbase

So there you go its a simple case of what you already own...

Now with that decision made its back to planning my new layout....

Oh what did I do?

Because I had not invested in the simple H mod, nor got SSDC or the cables to connect to a PC, I want dual analogue drive and I got an APB for Xmas from my lovely Girlfriend... New Powerbase won the day but I will miss my Rich G Laptower a lot.

byeeee
 

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Greg Gaub
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14,976 Posts
Very well put, Sean. I agree with pretty much everything you wrote. About the only thing that attracts me to the APB at all is the two lane analog that I didn't get on my base(s). I'm quite tempted to try the mod myself next time my track goes through a big change... unless something fantastic happens with the APB, or I can use my Lap Display with the APB.

I keep forgetting you didn't get Simple-H on your PB-Pro unit. In my book, without Simple-H, you might as well just use the APB. Between the two, it's a no-brainer. Only the APB comes close to Simple-H power (which is does come VERY close!), and anything else is just too anemic to bother with. All that, plus development is clearly leaning toward the APB, for good reason. I don't expect much to happen with C7030 development, though I still hold out hope for some updates to it.

IMHO, this one deserves a sticky, or at least a link in one of the index threads that are stickied.
 

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Last Place is my Place
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i cant wait intill my apb comes back as there was a problem with it in digital mode (it could of been the chips but my new mclaren 2010 f1 dpr end didnt meat up with the plug on the chip that got sent back and i couldnt test the thery)
and also til theris a simple-h power upgrade
 

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I agree with Mr. F.
In my case I got the C7030 with PB-Pro + SH, the lap tower, and Pit-Pro. I do not plan to get the 2 lane analogue mod because I could get the APB for less, PROVIDING I desire to run analogue.

The main reason I returned to slot cars was the analogue and all the above neat stuff..... which is most only for digital right now. Plus I have chipped my cars for digital, so I am staying with the PB-Pro (sunk cost) until the APB is "debugged" by Hornby, and is no longer "new" (so the prices will stabilize and with more product out there, may actually be available at RRSP or lower prices).

That's my 2 cents/pence worth.

Summary:
If you have PB-Pro + SH.... stay with it until the APB is warranted (PB breaks or ???) / on sale / improved or debugged
If you do not have PB-Pro + SH.... consider an APB as the next step
If you have PB-Pro but not SH...... consider an APB as the next step
If you do not have PB-Pro (i.e. 4 car PB) ... consider an APB as the next purchase to justify your digital investment

Oh, and thanks for the excellent discussion to get this going.

Cheers!
 

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Great summary. For the time being I'm sticking with my PBPRO+SH and SSDC and very soon pitlane pro as I'm not sure the slot.it controllers will work with new APB. Won't be long though. Also I don't think the dual analogue is still offered by Rich or Riko. Having two lane analogue is the only reason I want to move to new platform. Then again there is the slot.it Oxygen system...
 

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and after our Scalextric sessions at work, i've managed to shift my 4 car powerbase, PSU (got an aftermarket one sorted) and lap counter for a reasonable price as well, almost what i paid for them. Especially easy seeing as the stuff either costs a fortune, or is simply not available here........
 

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42 Yrs
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2,240 Posts
Cheers guys....

Having put my PBPro up for sale the number of PM's I had asking what it did compared to the APB that i thought a summary may be useful to many....

I Understand that there are still stocks of the robot power boards for a good few PB's Yet and Riko is still a fan of the dual analogue mod so with a bit of arm twsting pleading and financial encouragement he will probably do it for you. if he has the time...

As for the lap towers I understand that rich has enough laptower bits for another 10 or so... There is a lot of soldering work in building those but they are a superb but of kit and worth every penny despite the three figure price. If you have a C7030 get one before its too late.

Forums are a great place for info on this kind of stuff as what is best moves on a month by month basis with each new trick unlocked.. No book could ever keep up in a years time I'm sure the reasons will be different again.

Its nice to give those new to the hobby a bit of guidance... We all need it sometimes.
 

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42 Yrs
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QUOTE (sealevel @ 4 Jan 2011, 05:08) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>In my case I got the C7030 with PB-Pro + SH, the lap tower, and Pit-Pro. I do not plan to get the 2 lane analogue mod because I could get the APB for less, PROVIDING I desire to run analogue.

Gordon one of the biggest costs of the two lane alanlogue mod is the robot power board which costs about £60... you already have one of those!... With an APB costing £100 and the power supplies costing £70 i can assure you that you could get the two lane analogue mod done for way less than that including the shipping... There is a myth that these upgrades are really expensive... They aren't... but it would be unfair of me to put a number to it... PM Riko if you are interested honestly you would be surprised... The bulk of the work is already done...

Its just weighing up the downside of the theoretical 8amp limit on the relays against the 25amp raw power of the standard mod... against how often you may run analogue cars.

But they do take time... I admire RichG AWallace and RikoRocket for the time they put into the hobby to make our racing more fun... and i'm sure there are many more that i forgot to thank here.
 

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Cheers Sean and all for this thread. Being 4 car PB considering upgrade it's really useful to have it all explained in one place, particularly the options for running analogue.
 

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or
have one of each


I'm thinking pb-pro for a rally track, then one lane analog is fine and you could race a digital or analog car
and
the APB for my regular two lane race track for the two lane analog option and of course digital and new super computer control
 

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QUOTE (hankscorpio @ 4 Jan 2011, 12:48) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Gordon one of the biggest costs of the two lane alanlogue mod is the robot power board which costs about £60... you already have one of those!... With an APB costing £100 and the power supplies costing £70 i can assure you that you could get the two lane analogue mod done for way less than that including the shipping... There is a myth that these upgrades are really expensive... They aren't... but it would be unfair of me to put a number to it... PM Riko if you are interested honestly you would be surprised... The bulk of the work is already done...

Its just weighing up the downside of the theoretical 8amp limit on the relays against the 25amp raw power of the standard mod... against how often you may run analogue cars.

But they do take time... I admire RichG AWallace and RikoRocket for the time they put into the hobby to make our racing more fun... and i'm sure there are many more that i forgot to thank here.

I'm sure that I read that you could use a Toshiba laptop charger as long as it had the correct output etc for use with the 7042 or at least I hope so since I got one off ebay pretty cheaply. I haven't yet tried it as I already had a proper Hornby one from the set I bought.
 

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42 Yrs
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
QUOTE (JamboRossi79 @ 4 Jan 2011, 19:40) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I'm sure that I read that you could use a Toshiba laptop charger as long as it had the correct output etc for use with the 7042 or at least I hope so since I got one off ebay pretty cheaply.

I have ordered two of those myself to try... One will ultimately power my 4 car powerbase on my work bench... the other... well they were so cheap why buy 1?

Luckily I have 2 C7024's thanks to scalexxkid and one i already had with my 4 car PB.
 

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Question from a newbie to digital world:

I've nabbed a bargain digital set (original Lane Change Challenge with 2xBoxsters) which will come with a 7030. I'm assuming the powerbase will be untouched.

I really want the functionality of either the 7042 or the PBPro, but my budget is tight.

Would it be worth shelling out for the PBPro upgrade - without any power output adjustments (assuming it's a 1.5 of course)? I can see that shelling out for the Simple-H mod and decent power supply would be about as much as the 7042 so that's not really an option.

Or should I save my pennies and invest in the 7042 when I can afford? (I can see myself spending those pennies on all the digital-specific track though...!)
 

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42 Yrs
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2,240 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I have some bad news...

None of the Digital lane change challenges had a V1.5 in them... sad fact i know but unless somebody has "swapped" it out for a V1.5 at some point you will probably be dissapointed.

A V1.5 costs £25 to upgrade to PBPro... Will give you all the functionality of the APB except dual analogue drive,

A V1.2/3/4 costs about £125ish to upgrade to PBPro & SH.... again with single analogue drive and another few pounds to have the dual analogue mod done in addition.

How much would you consider acceptable to upgrade to Pbpro?... Just see if i can suggest anything else you could do with that much cash oh and where are you?
 

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Well I was liking the sound of £25! I don't know what the upper limit would be - would have to see how much I can not spend this month. It's only going to be lightly used at first until I get round to chipping more cars, so the power side might not be so bad - but I do like the sound of the 50% throttle option with two young children, and the pace car so I can practice without them around! I did get a start power strip with start throttles that have limiters on them, which can do for now.

Oh - and in UK so extra postage not a problem.

Food for thought - thanks!
 
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