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Super Modulator
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, got permission to show some pictures of the new QSI plug and play system for the USA Trains locomotives.

This is a combination sound and motor decoder, and also works on DC and interfaces with AirWire, just like the current Aristocraft QSI system.

Since there is no socket in a USAT, the setup is different.

USAT has a single "mother board" which has 4 switches, and the electrics for the different voltages for the different lamps. Everything connects to this board.

QSI did something clever, you basically unplug everything from the USAT board, take out 2 screws, and swap in the QSI system, which has the same shape, and the 4 switches.

I'm sure there will be tons of questions, so I will start by showing this production unit. The QSI "system" consists of a main board and a daughter board. You use this system to replace the stock USAT board in your loco.


The picture below shows a top view of the QSI system.The stock USAT board has the same outline and mounting holes. The QSI has a lot more sockets on it though. You notice the microprocessor is on the small "daughter board"

(This daughter board is NOT the same as the single QSI board used in Aristo locos).



The underside of the QSI system has the slide switches jut like your stock USAT board has, in the same layout, thus utilizing the original slots in the bottom of your USAT loco, and letting you continue to control the motor, sound, lights, and smoke unit.


From the side, you can see the daughter board that has the DCC/DC decoder "brains" on it. It is not intended to be used separately. To be clear, the main microprocessor for motor control and sound is here.


Agai, to install, you unplug the existing wires from the stock board, and basically plug them back into the new board "set".

What you see in these pictures is more connectors than the USAT board.

This is because different USAT locos use different connectors for lighting, and also different voltages. This single system has enough different sockets, so it accommodates 95% of the USAT locos.

Regards, Greg
 

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On a Aristo GP40 for example you can take off the top (dynamic brake blister in my units case) and expose the switches. Why can't Aristo or USAt just make that whole board removeable from the top so we don't have practically disassemble the whole unit to add boards, electronics, etc?
 

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Greg, is this new QSI - USAT PnP socket pin compatible with AC and Bachmann sockets, and also take other ESC's that fit them?
 

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Super Modulator
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Truthman:

That's a great idea. Unfortunately, we have history to contend with here. Aristo standardized on their socket a while ago, and it could be placed up in the shell I suppose. USAT has had switches on the underside of the loco forever, so the board is on the underside.

We are hoping for the end of the first quarter or sooner, but it is really somewhat driven by the economy and demand. If a ton of people comment here that they want them, that will indeed speed up the process. I will be sending links to threads with people's comments to QSI solutions so they can see the feedback and interest.


Tony:

I think you are misunderstanding. The new system is physically 2 boards, but the "daughter board" is not intended to fit into an Aristo socket, nor used as a standalone product. You get the "set" as a unit, to be used as a unit. I was just trying to say what main functions were on what boards.


Regards, Greg
 

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Super Modulator
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
More explanation:

On the top edge of this board in this picture, you see a red 3 pin, a white 3 pin and a red 2 pin and a green 2 pin connector. When you get your USAT board, it comes with a sheet for each USAT loco, and it tells you where to plug your lighting in. There are also 3 more white 2 pin connectors below. Also, more modern USAT locos often use a smaller 3 pin or 4 pin connector, and you can see 3 of these on the right hand edge of this board. So, there is a place to put your headlight and cab light connectors. Which sockets is determined by your model. USAT sometimes uses lamps, sometimes leds. In addition, sometimes the voltage polarity reverses, like the classification lamps that go from red to green in a GP7.


No matter, whatever you have, the simple instructions tell you where to plug in your lights. It's really nice, and your loco's lights will function just like they did before, with complete control. In most locos, we are talking 2 or 3 connectors only.


The other benefit is one model works for all locos, even though the locos have very different lighting systems.




Regards, Greg
 

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Posted By Truthman on 01/01/2009 5:17 PM
On a Aristo GP40 for example you can take off the top (dynamic brake blister in my units case) and expose the switches. Why can't Aristo or USAt just make that whole board removeable from the top so we don't have practically disassemble the whole unit to add boards, electronics, etc?






Its acually very simple now a days to get the bodies off the locos, if you CAN work a screw driver its a done deal.....
 

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Super Modulator
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I already mentioned how to hook up the lights. There is a socket that powers the USAT smoke unit(s) and you unplug from the stock board and plug into the QSI board, so that is simple.

The speaker connector is simple, and you get a cable, since USAT does not ship with speakers.

The last 2 connections you need are the power pickups and the motors. In the picture above, the connector at the bottom right with 4 wires is going to one truck. the part of the cable you cannot see has the same plugs and sockets that connect these wires in a stock unit (one 2 pin JST for track pickup and one 2 pin JST for motor). QSI supplies these cables to go from their board to the existing stock JST connectors.

A bonus is that there is a simple and easy way to set the DC direction to your liking (NMRA or G scale).

I've actually taken longer to type this post than it takes to install this board.

Questions?

Regards, Greg
 

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Questions.

OK.
I will ask it again.
Can AC and Bachmann compatible decoders be used in this new QSI socket?
 

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Super Modulator
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I went back and clarified the first few posts Tony, so please reread them.

The socket on the main board is just to handle the daughter board, it is not intended to be any new standard. The interface between the USAT loco and the system is the stock connectors from the lights, smoke unit, and trucks.


Lighting in a USAT loco is not just a lamp on or off, but many use reverse polarity to change the lamps from red to green. Thus the requirements of a USAT loco WITHOUT modification are beyond the simple function inputs of just a DCC lamp/function output that is on off or dim.

The added complexity and functions of USAT locos made it necessary to have all the extra sockets and attendant circuitry. Also, consider the added current requirements of the USAT locos, so it makes sense to have heavier duty output stages and just more real estate, i.e. put the output transistors on the main board where there is more room.

Regards, Greg
 

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I'm good for 3 or 4. depending on cost. What do you mean by "without lamp or motor drivers". this new system would allow the loco to be operated by a DCC system?
 

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Super Modulator
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Tony:

I think by revising my statements, your comment is because you thought the socket on the main board is intended to be a standard. Nothing is further from the truth, it's just a socket to handle the QSI daughter board.


This modular approach by QSI may help more plug and play products in the future.

Consider making the "brains" an internal QSI module, and then the "muscle" (the interfacing to the wiring, the different motor drivers, the different lighting functions) a custom board to fit the locomotive in question.


So, maybe brand XYZ gets a different "main" board, but the same daughter board. This would save manufacturing costs, thus lowering costs to the consumer. (This is speculation on my part, but it's how I would do it).



Mike:

As I stated (but have revised to be clearer) this unit does everything the Aristo version does for an Aristo locomotive. Sound, motor, lights, and also smoke via the smoke switch.



Regards, Greg
 

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Greg.
Thanks for revising the details of the thread.

It might have been more easily understood if you had said from the outset the whole assembly was a two part DCC decoder/sound system.
 

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I think I got it. Swap out the original USA board for the QSI dual board set up. It will give you the DC/DCC and the Airwire plug in features but no super socket.

-Brian
 

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This is just what USA needs to get in the DCC market easily. They don't seem to be doing their own thing. I would guess the cost would be quite a bit more than to convert a modern Aristo. Your getting a lot more. The job for me to convert a USA loco was the lighting. So lately I have been convincing customers to hold off on their USA conversions, hoping that this becomes reality and at reasonable cost. QSI has shown to be very competitive with other products. If this is successful I could see USA never developing a plug and play product of their own. But I could see QSI helping their sales. What is easier to find today, a DASH-9, or a SD-70
 
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