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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

I just joined this forum! First post... go easy on me.

Just wondering what the popular opinion is on old school LGB vs Marklin. I have a small amount of old LGB from the 80s and 90s but zero experience with the modern marklin owned LGB locomotives/rolling stock etc. What do you think? Has quality changed since the takeover? Improved in some areas and gone down in others?

Reason I ask is, I am starting to like some of their newer trains, would like to know if it is worth the price. LGB has always been top dollar, but I wonder if the value holds with marklin?

Thanks!

Ben
 

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Value? The quality is still high. Is it less than the original German made stuff? Probably.

Overall quality higher than most Chinese made stuff. Buy what you want. Have fun with trains.

DCC wise the new Marklin decoders are a nightmare, but people have learned to exist with them.

Greg
 

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If the Marklin decoder is used on non-marklin dcc systems, one should change CV50 to analog/DCC only. And some pulsed power sources on DC may not like some decoders by any manufacturer and the linear filter for DC systems fixes this issue. I rewrite the CV50 address contents to 2. (was 10 on mine).
 

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Hey all,

I just joined this forum! First post... go easy on me.

Just wondering what the popular opinion is on old school LGB vs Marklin. I have a small amount of old LGB from the 80s and 90s but zero experience with the modern marklin owned LGB locomotives/rolling stock etc. What do you think? Has quality changed since the takeover? Improved in some areas and gone down in others?

Reason I ask is, I am starting to like some of their newer trains, would like to know if it is worth the price. LGB has always been top dollar, but I wonder if the value holds with marklin?

Thanks!

Ben
Hi Ben, I have several older LGB Locomotives as well as 6 new Marklin MFX locomotives. I like them both. I think the older locomotives are slightly more durable. Seems like the newer detail parts are way more fragile but I really like the way the MFX decoders perform out of the box. Very smooth compared to the older DCC MTS locomotives. It does not matter whether 14 speed steps or 28, still very very smooth running. I love the pulsed smoke units too. I use a Massoth system to run my stuff. I can change CV's such as volume controls, remap the function buttons & locomotive addresses just fine. Yes, I do recomend changing CV 50 if not running a Marklin CS3 system but I have never had any problems so far.
 

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I think M-LGB moved away from some of the more durable plastics that LGB used back in the day. Leading to those parts being more fragile. I wonder if they are still using Luran S for the bodies? That was the old LGB plastic and it does extremely well with UV rays. My 20+ year old track has been outdoors for 99% of its life and the ties still look good and are not brittle at all. I think even the old LGB engines had issues with pulse power supplies as I remember the warnings in the booklets with my engines I bought back in the 90's. Didn't matter if they had sound or not. While I personally prefer the older LGB trains, I would not let that hold me back on the new stuff. Marklin has always walked to their own drum beat when it came to digital control, being a Motorola designed system. Once you get adjusted to it, its not bad, especially if you use their Central Station controller with the latest updates and touch screen. None of it is cheap, but then both LGB and Marklin are top of the line and have never been "cheap" doller wise. If you like it and enjoy it, then its money well spent. Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you all for the replies! Really appreciate it. It is really good to know that the marklin plastics are not as good. I do not run DCC, I have a very basic analog layout with a few turnouts. May look to expand in the future and include DCC, but money isn't of the type grown on trees at the moment. But hey I can dream right.

Ben
 

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I agree with wolfetrac.
while im still largely analog, i like mfx sound.
i like the marklin color palette much more. Livery is, imho, better. Finer detail and printing. Moving toward model trains rather than the model/toy hybrid of yore. Yet,...some livery can be rather dull...like the prototypes.



some marklin items are reasonably priced, imho, because of added sound and features.


i have in the past year purchased yet more old moguls, 2018, 2028, in nearly mint condition. (My old 2018 ran fine, looks great still. i just got impulsive. By comparison to the new sound mfx equipped mogul offerings, it seemed a judicious choice. I was surprised by the Christmas day joy i experienced this july when they arrived. $300 each, shipped. Money well spent.
Low price, superb performance, if analog. Bright colors. Some old us coaches too. And an mfx franzburg, latest saxon ivk, and saxon ik.

my biggest issue with marklin is my experience with obtaining replacement parts for marklin items, saxon iik, saxon ivk....at street prices, if you need parts, you may be out of luck....tolerable with a 2-500 dollar loco, less so, imho, 1-2k

marklin quality is top notch. Locos are slightly lighter than earlier counterparts. Brushed gold looks more harmonious than the early 24k mirror plating. Most rolling stock now have metal wheels.
 

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Motorblocks are largely the same with the MLGB locos. The plastic and paint are somewhat different and maybe less durable, but not a big/significant difference. I think the detail is actually better now.

The Marklin electronics/sound IMO are just not as good as other decoders available (ESU Loksound, Massoth eMotion, Soundtraxx). Since the original LGB didnt have any of this you cant compare. Is it a show stopper? No, and many are perfectly happy with it. MLGB decoders work great with their CS, and offer sound in analog.

Trains have evolved so its hard to compare when the electronics have advanced so much, but overall I'd say MLGB is still definitely worth it and holds value just as well. I've replaced the decoders in my MLGB locos with ones I like better. MLGB make my favorite rolling stock, however.
 
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