Welcome to the forum   
Welcome Guest! To enable all features please Login or Register.

Notification

Icon
Error

Share
Options
View
Go to last post in this topic Go to first unread post in this topic
Offline dickinsonj  
#1 Posted : 15 February 2021 15:50:02(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
I finally bought a 60216 CS3 to replace my old CS2, which seemed to be a bit overwhelmed by all that it was being asked to do. I love everything about the CS3 -the interface, the screen, the fast responses - except for one problem.

I have been running my layout with my old CS2 for several months now with just a few issues. Everything mostly worked correctly with an occasional trigger of a loco function not initiated by me, and some phantom mfx registrations resulting in Lok-1 entries in the roster. I have read posts from other CS2 users who have the same problems and I have not seen any resolutions. I never figured out what was causing those issues but the CS2 is being asked to do things now that it was not designed to do, such as command up to 32 functions. The US Märklin digital consultants thought that the problems might be due to the limited memory in the CS2, which does make sense. They recommended deleting the problem locos and registering them again, although that did not really change anything. So I decided that it was finally time to upgrade to a CS3.

I bought my CS3 in late January, immediately added 32 gb of flash memory and after a brief familiarization period I swapped it in to replace my CS2. Everything else is the same, with a yard, six mainlines, all C track with a full power bus and three newer boosters and switched mode power packs. My layout is divided into four power sections using the booster in the CS3 and three external boosters (60174/60175) communicating with the CS3 through a terminal. The very first thing that I did was update the CS3 software to the latest version available from Märklin.

I currently have 13 locos registered with the CS3, all of which are running their factory mfx decoders with minimal changes. At this point nothing about my layout has changed except substituting the CS3 for the CS2. But on two occasions some of my locos stopped getting commands from the CS3 while my trains were operating. In both cases I had to cut track power to stop the locos which were running and that condition persisted even after shutting down and rebooting the next day. What appears to be happening is that the CS3 is losing track of some mfx decoders and stops commanding them.

Both times the entries for the affected locos were still present in the CS3 but it did not issue any commands to them. I deleted the non-responding locos from the CS3 and after they registered again they were fine. Strangely it was the same 7 decoders which lost communications in both cases, while the other 6 locos continued to work perfectly. The affected locos range from a few years to a few months old, and they worked perfectly with the CS2.

I am reluctant to return the CS3 and wait for months/years while it returns to Germany, but the current situation is now workable long term.

If anyone has had a similar problem or has found a cause I would love to hear from you.

Thanks for listening!

Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
Offline JohnjeanB  
#2 Posted : 15 February 2021 18:02:32(UTC)
JohnjeanB

France   
Joined: 04/02/2011(UTC)
Posts: 1,325
Location: Paris, France
Hi Jim
Just like you I just replaced my 60215 (CS2) by a 60226 (CS3) and I don't have a huge experience with it. It is fitted with a 32 GB card for sounds and back-ups

I noticed that MFX registration was more painful than with the CS2 (I had to move a number of my locos to the programming track) whereby with the CS2 all registration was made with all locos on location.

I also noticed some abrupt switch off by my 60101 (100W power supply) causing a complete cold start to be needed. This never happened with my CS2 (both of them I use in turns).

I had to migrate my directly-connected S88 (6088 and 60880) to one of the Link88 RJ45 buses (1 or 2) by making an adapter cable.

I also observed a funny behavior as I did the following
* created a switchboard-like surface for most of my layout and all went well
CS3-HBF platte.png

* when a created the surface for the steam depot (with a TT) using the normal layout then all went well
cs3_screenshot_2021_02_15_17_10_43.png
BUT when I connected the steam depot to the main layout (invoking interface switches) then all tracks on the steam depot was with bridge-like tracks
cs3_screenshot_2021_02_15_17_16_26.png


You mention you consider sending your CS3 to Germany: Don't unless there is an obvious failure with a well documented failure report in German or in English.
Otherwise they will keep it 3 months and return it to you un-repaired. (happened to me with another item on intermittent problem)
I have 34 MFX locos registered plus some MM2 locos, cranes, etc.

Cheers
Jean
My layout videos
latest vid
hump yard
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by JohnjeanB
Offline marklinist5999  
#3 Posted : 15 February 2021 18:52:12(UTC)
marklinist5999

United States   
Joined: 10/02/2021(UTC)
Posts: 57
Location: Michigan, Troy
Originally Posted by: dickinsonj Go to Quoted Post
I finally bought a 60216 CS3 to replace my old CS2, which seemed to be a bit overwhelmed by all that it was being asked to do. I love everything about the CS3 -the interface, the screen, the fast responses - except for one problem.

I have been running my layout with my old CS2 for several months now with just a few issues. Everything mostly worked correctly with an occasional trigger of a loco function not initiated by me, and some phantom mfx registrations resulting in Lok-1 entries in the roster. I have read posts from other CS2 users who have the same problems and I have not seen any resolutions. I never figured out what was causing those issues but the CS2 is being asked to do things now that it was not designed to do, such as command up to 32 functions. The US Märklin digital consultants thought that the problems might be due to the limited memory in the CS2, which does make sense. They recommended deleting the problem locos and registering them again, although that did not really change anything. So I decided that it was finally time to upgrade to a CS3.

I bought my CS3 in late January, immediately added 32 gb of flash memory and after a brief familiarization period I swapped it in to replace my CS2. Everything else is the same, with a yard, six mainlines, all C track with a full power bus and three newer boosters and switched mode power packs. My layout is divided into four power sections using the booster in the CS3 and three external boosters (60174/60175) communicating with the CS3 through a terminal. The very first thing that I did was update the CS3 software to the latest version available from Märklin.

I currently have 13 locos registered with the CS3, all of which are running their factory mfx decoders with minimal changes. At this point nothing about my layout has changed except substituting the CS3 for the CS2. But on two occasions some of my locos stopped getting commands from the CS3 while my trains were operating. In both cases I had to cut track power to stop the locos which were running and that condition persisted even after shutting down and rebooting the next day. What appears to be happening is that the CS3 is losing track of some mfx decoders and stops commanding them.

Both times the entries for the affected locos were still present in the CS3 but it did not issue any commands to them. I deleted the non-responding locos from the CS3 and after they registered again they were fine. Strangely it was the same 7 decoders which lost communications in both cases, while the other 6 locos continued to work perfectly. The affected locos range from a few years to a few months old, and they worked perfectly with the CS2.

I am reluctant to return the CS3 and wait for months/years while it returns to Germany, but the current situation is now workable long term.

If anyone has had a similar problem or has found a cause I would love to hear from you.

Thanks for listening!

Dick, I just got my CS3+ late January. I also installed the short update that was available. I only have 2 MFX lcos, and 1 MFX+. I had no trouble. No problem registering older FX or MM ones either. It came from Texas. Serial number suggests a date of manufacture judging by numbers as either Feb. of 2020, or April 2020. There are only 2's. 4's, and a 20 in it denoting the week and month of the year.

thanks 1 user liked this useful post by marklinist5999
Offline dickinsonj  
#4 Posted : 15 February 2021 19:37:31(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
Originally Posted by: JohnjeanB Go to Quoted Post
You mention you consider sending your CS3 to Germany: Don't unless there is an obvious failure with a well documented failure report in German or in English.
Otherwise they will keep it 3 months and return it to you un-repaired. (happened to me with another item on intermittent problem)

Yes Jean, I agree that sending it back to Märklin would be my very last choice. If the source of the problem is the CS3 it is more likely software than hardware in my opinion anyway. I would suspect other components on my layout, but this problem just started after moving to the CS3. I guess it could be a compatibility issue like you saw with your S88, where it is not working and playing well with a booster or one of my decoders. I initially had all of my mfx equipment registered on the CS3 but after the first problem I only registered the 13 items currently under power, hoping to narrow down the source of the problem. It seems unlikely that seven decoders went rogue at once, particularly since they have worked fine with the CS2, in some cases for several years.

I always register on my programming track because I had some problems doing that on my main track with the CS2. I had an odd registration event just this morning. I deleted my new catenary maintenance car, which had fallen out of communication with the CS3. But then it would not register on the CS3 again, even after a reboot. So next I put it on the programming track with my CS2 where it would turn on functions but not turn them off again! So I deleted it and registered it again on the CS2. After that when I tried registering it again on the CS3 it worked correctly. Strange behavior.

That track diagram behavior you saw was odd. I was about to make my first track board when this other stuff started, so I am pushing that back for now. I have read other posts about the challenges of getting a track board set up and working correctly on the CS3. If it does not become more reliable than it currently is I won't need a track board anyway!


Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
Offline dickinsonj  
#5 Posted : 15 February 2021 19:39:48(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
Originally Posted by: marklinist5999 Go to Quoted Post
I just got my CS3+ late January ... It came from Texas.

So did mine - maybe it is something in the water there. BigGrin
Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
Offline dickinsonj  
#6 Posted : 15 February 2021 20:36:49(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
A clarification on what I thought was strange behavior when registering my problem locos. I had deleted them all but forgotten to electrically isolate four of the locos. So while registering one model on my programming track the CS3 was actually registering all five of them simultaneously, with four of them sitting on the mainline. Apparently when that occurs it does not show the series of registration messages that I expected. But they are all there and functioning properly now, so it was user error in this case, and not the CS3! BigGrin

Now for some run time and seeing what happens next. I will report back soon.

Thanks for the inputs!
Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
Offline kiwiAlan  
#7 Posted : 15 February 2021 21:07:58(UTC)
kiwiAlan

United Kingdom   
Joined: 23/07/2014(UTC)
Posts: 5,711
Location: ENGLAND, Didcot
before you start totally blaming the cs3 i would upgrade to firmware in the decoders.

Download the software for the 60971 programmer to your Windows PC and connect to the cs3 with it across your local network. Also make sure your cs3 has upgraded itself to the most recent level as well.

Just remember, if you send it back to Marklin the first thing they will do is make sure the cs3 software is at current level, then check it with locos fitted with decoders at the most recent firmware upgrade.

thanks 1 user liked this useful post by kiwiAlan
Offline JohnjeanB  
#8 Posted : 15 February 2021 22:39:34(UTC)
JohnjeanB

France   
Joined: 04/02/2011(UTC)
Posts: 1,325
Location: Paris, France
Originally Posted by: dickinsonj Go to Quoted Post
That track diagram behavior you saw was odd. I was about to make my first track board when this other stuff started, so I am pushing that back for now. I have read other posts about the challenges of getting a track board set up and working correctly on the CS3. If it does not become more reliable than it currently is I won't need a track board anyway!

In fact, my fault, Märklin recommends to select either the normal track board ("Platte") or the control desk ("Stellpult"). Probable reason: they know about remaining bugs
I did because the layout looks so much better using the "Stellpult" but it poses a real problem when having a turntable.

Long story short: once you have spent the time to set the 'layout" right, then it is very OK
Cheers
Jean


My layout videos
latest vid
hump yard
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by JohnjeanB
Offline dickinsonj  
#9 Posted : 15 February 2021 22:57:37(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
Originally Posted by: kiwiAlan Go to Quoted Post
before you start totally blaming the cs3 i would upgrade to firmware in the decoders.


I totally agree Alan. I thought of that this morning, because this is the kind of behavior you would expect with a system with mismatched software versions. I will update all of my decoder's firmware, starting with the locos which are giving me the most trouble. I would never send the CS3 back to Märklin unless I could determine a definite hardware failure.

My CS3 is up to date and I already have the 60971 software on my laptop, so that should be doable. I tried using the CS3 to do that the other day, but I did not have my laptop on that local network, so of course it did not work. As soon as I catch up on our massive snowfalls, that will be my very first chore.

You have helped me figure out enough stuff that soon you can say that you are running a MRR remotely in North America! BigGrin

Cheers,

Jim
Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
Offline dickinsonj  
#10 Posted : 16 February 2021 00:47:37(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
Originally Posted by: JohnjeanB Go to Quoted Post
In fact, my fault, Märklin recommends to select either the normal track board ("Platte") or the control desk ("Stellpult").

Thanks for the tip Jean. Those are examples of the level of knowledge that make this stuff all work and can be hard to figure out sometimes. I find that Märklin software works well once you understand exactly how it works but the information needed to get there can be difficult to find.

Luckily going with my gut seems to work pretty often, which is a sign of a good interface design as far as I'm concerned. BigGrin

Cheers

Jim

Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
Offline dickinsonj  
#11 Posted : 21 February 2021 16:12:05(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
I'm not sure if this adds much, but here is one more bit of information on this problem. This is getting more frequent and has occurred the last two times I ran my trains. Yesterday after deleting and then registering the mfx locos with my CS3 again I made a restore point. Later that same day it lost communication with the same seven locos plus a lucky new addition of my S 3/6, which had not been on my track earlier. I have been trying to not run more than one or two of the suspect decoders at once, so that I can avoid the chaos of multiple trains running without my ability to control them.

Today I restored from my backup and now they are all back to normal functioning, at least without the hassle of deleting and registering them again. That seems to indicate that something is going wrong within the CS3 to the registration data for these eight decoders. Maybe the mfx assignment has changed to a different address? I guess I can compare those before and after it happens the next time. My catenary maintenance car was not on my track when this happened a few days ago, but it still went out of communication with my CS3, so it was not some strange interaction between it and the decoders.

I am still on board with the firmware fix suggested by Alan but I am doing some needed upgrades to my home network and my Windows box right now. I should be able to try upgrading the firmware in some of these decoders soon and I will see if that helps. Maybe I should remove that memory card from the CS3 because I wonder if that might be degrading my CS3's memory in some way.
Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
Offline JohnjeanB  
#12 Posted : 21 February 2021 16:29:33(UTC)
JohnjeanB

France   
Joined: 04/02/2011(UTC)
Posts: 1,325
Location: Paris, France
Hi Jim
Originally Posted by: dickinsonj Go to Quoted Post
Today I restored from my backup and now they are all back to normal functioning, at least without the hassle of deleting and registering them again. That seems to indicate that something is going wrong within the CS3 to the registration data for these eight decoders.

Restore a CS3 means all MFX registration addresses are restored.

What may happen is a conflict of MFX addresses (2 locos with the same MFX address). In this case the CS3 is not properly talking to one or both locos. Sooner or later it will try to change the addresses to solve the conflict. In this case it is better to have those locos on the programming track while all other locos are on the layout (main power). This is because on a large layout, registration of all MFX locos will not happen (at least by my layout)

A restore of a backup prior this address conflict solving will bring back the old addresses in conflict and so force the CS3 to sort again the conflict.

Sorry for the long speech but a restore may bring problems if at the back-up time all locos were not properly talking to the CS3
Cheers
Jean


My layout videos
latest vid
hump yard
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by JohnjeanB
Offline dickinsonj  
#13 Posted : 21 February 2021 17:19:42(UTC)
dickinsonj

United States   
Joined: 05/12/2008(UTC)
Posts: 1,394
Location: United States
Originally Posted by: JohnjeanB Go to Quoted Post
Sorry for the long speech but a restore may bring problems if at the back-up time all locos were not properly talking to the CS3


Yes Jean, I totally agree!

I am limiting what I have on my track as I work through this situation to reduce problems like that. I had all of the working locos on my main track when I re-registered the problem locos on my programming track, one after the other. Then I checked that all 11 locos were responsive to the CS3 before I did the backup. After the eight locos stopped being commanded by the CS3 again, I restored to that working configuration and again verified that all 11 were fine. I have now recorded the addresses of the locos when things are working correctly and it will be interesting to see if they have changed the next time this happens. I also removed the SD card in case it was causing memory issues in the CS3.

I suspect that you and Alan are both leading me to the same possible fix. If one of the decoders which needs new firmware is not communicating properly with the CS3, then the addresses could be getting mangled when the conflict is resolved. I should be ready to update decoder firmware sometime later this week, and I will report what happens. Interestingly all of the decoders affected are relatively new, while some which are not affected are 4-6 years old. There is some clue there too, but I don't know what it is.

I love input on this stuff which is how I finally get it fixed. No need to apologize about long speeches that contain useful information. ThumpUp
Regards,
Jim

I have almost all Märklin and mostly HO, although I do have a small number of Z gauge trains!
I have models from Era I to Era VI, but I try to focus on Eras I & III. Whoops, that one got away from me. Let's just say I focus on cool trains, regardless of the particulars :-)
So many trains and so little time.
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by dickinsonj
Users browsing this topic
OceanSpiders 2.0
Forum Jump  
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.

| Powered by YAF.NET | YAF.NET © 2003-2021, Yet Another Forum.NET
This page was generated in 0.464 seconds.