Author Topic: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA  (Read 10379 times)

William Brillinger

  • Dispatcher (Admin)
  • Conductor
  • *****
  • Posts: 1152
    • Precision Design Co.
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #30 on: September 22, 2016, 10:59:06 PM »
I just began playing with my CI-1 today too.

I'm using a Windows 7 (x64) Laptop without issues. It seems to work fine for me.

The scroll wheel is a little bit of a strange choice. I'm thinking this won't work with VNC then.

- Bill
- Bill Brillinger, RPUG Admin

Modeling the BNML in HO Scale, owner of Precision Design Co., and RailPro Dealer.


KPack

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 692
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #31 on: September 22, 2016, 11:11:20 PM »
At first I thought the scroll wheel was strange, but then I realized that using a mouse to "turn" a simulated knob would be super annoying.  Using arrow keys on a keyboard would be even worse.  The mouse wheel at least has the ability to be spun at different rates, whereas you are locked in on a keyboard to a single predetermined rate of speed increase/decrease.

The CI-1 is not meant to replace the HC-2.  It is meant to make it easier for those just getting into Railpro to be able to use and control their trains without having to purchase the more expensive controller right off the bat.

However, I think the CI-1 should be in every Railpro user's arsenal, even if they already have multiple HC's.  The value of being to load sounds without draining the HC batteries is reason enough to buy this.  The CI-1 will be even more useful as more code is released for it and layout automation/control becomes more of a reality.

-Kevin

William Brillinger

  • Dispatcher (Admin)
  • Conductor
  • *****
  • Posts: 1152
    • Precision Design Co.
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #32 on: September 23, 2016, 06:59:32 AM »
If you could use the wheel and/or the mouse then it would also be touch compatible. The way it is now, using VNC to connect it as a virtual throttle on a smartphone is out.

I agree, the biggest attraction for existing RailPro users is going to be in programming. It's a huge improvement on that front.

Uptake seems very good. I have a bunch of them pre-sold and ready to ship as soon as Tim Ring gives the word. In fact, I only have 1 left from the initial stock that is not yet spoken for.  More are on the way.
- Bill Brillinger, RPUG Admin

Modeling the BNML in HO Scale, owner of Precision Design Co., and RailPro Dealer.


nodcc4me

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 641
  • RailPro Fan
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #33 on: September 23, 2016, 07:47:53 AM »
I haven't yet had a chance to do much with it, but I was impressed with the layout. It is not compatible with XP, which is installed on my netbook, so I was unable to use it on the train layout in the basement. On a test track by the PC, I had no trouble with the mouse wheel or any other mouse functions. The controller will run trains for hours, so the ability to do that via computer or tablet isn't really an issue anyway. Downloading, copying and deleting files is more the intended purpose, and not draining the controller batteries is a huge benefit.


Now I need to update the OS on the netbook.
Al

Run your train, not your brain. Get RailPro. It's a no-brainer.

G8B4Life

  • Signalman (Global Mod)
  • Conductor
  • *****
  • Posts: 974
  • I'll think of a catchy tag line one day
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #34 on: September 23, 2016, 08:12:15 AM »
This thing is sounding quite good. Wish RE would give the word so you could ship Bill, now there's three of you playing with them  ???

Quote
Downloading, copying and deleting files is more the intended purpose, and not draining the controller batteries is a huge benefit.

This is the primary reason I'm getting it. I might even build a module testing board, like what those DCC folk have. I really can't see myself running trains from three rooms away. With those thinking of a USB extension cable, I seem to remember something about a maximum length. I'll see if I can find the reference.

Quote
Now I need to update the OS on the netbook.

Or you could run a virtual pc. This is what I did on my XP box when RPA 2 came out and wasn't XP compatible (I used VirtualBox but there are other virtualisation programs out there). I had no trouble connecting the HC-2 to the RPA software in the virtual environment so I wouldn't imagine any trouble connecting the CI-1 to it's software.

- Tim

nodcc4me

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 641
  • RailPro Fan
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #35 on: September 23, 2016, 08:50:53 AM »
Tim, thanks for the info on Virtual Box. Looks like it doesn't support XP as a host system:


Currently, VirtualBox runs on the following host operating systems:
  • Windows hosts:[1]
    • Windows Vista SP1 and later (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • Windows Server 2008 (64-bit)
    • Windows Server 2008 R2 (64-bit)
    • Windows 7 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • Windows 8 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • Windows 8.1 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • Windows 10 RTM build 10240 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • Windows Server 2012 (64-bit)
    • Windows Server 2012 R2 (64-bit)
Al

Run your train, not your brain. Get RailPro. It's a no-brainer.

G8B4Life

  • Signalman (Global Mod)
  • Conductor
  • *****
  • Posts: 974
  • I'll think of a catchy tag line one day
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #36 on: September 23, 2016, 09:16:04 AM »
Al,

I think they've not mentioned XP in that list simply because it's an End of Life OS. I can say I'm running a 5.xx version of VirtualBox on my XP system (XP as the host, Win7 as the guest).

I can't check exactly which version I'm running, or more correctly was running as that system died a couple of weeks ago and I haven't finished building my new system yet but it was definitely a version 5 VirtualBox running. You should be fine with it.

- Tim



nodcc4me

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 641
  • RailPro Fan
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #37 on: September 23, 2016, 09:35:51 AM »
Thanks Tim. I'll give it a try then.  :)
Al

Run your train, not your brain. Get RailPro. It's a no-brainer.

Dean

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 192
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #38 on: September 23, 2016, 10:15:23 AM »
You could always try VMware Player

http://filehippo.com/download_vmware_player/
Dean

nodcc4me

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 641
  • RailPro Fan
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #39 on: September 23, 2016, 10:22:14 AM »
This looks like another good choice. Thanks Dean.
Al

Run your train, not your brain. Get RailPro. It's a no-brainer.

G8B4Life

  • Signalman (Global Mod)
  • Conductor
  • *****
  • Posts: 974
  • I'll think of a catchy tag line one day
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #40 on: September 23, 2016, 10:48:40 AM »
Kevin,

Quote
The storage space assigned to it is the same as the HC-2.  It seems like it could be arbitrarily set that way....I don't see a reason why it couldn't be increased to whatever you needed.

I have to get some clarification on that, is the storage space same as the HC-2 or the same as RP Assistant? If it's as per the HC-2 then maybe the files are downloaded to the CI-1 before being passed onto an LM, or maybe RE is trying to make it work exactly like a HC-2. If it's the same as RPA then there's a good reason for it, which is due to how the files are stored.

Quote
If you are using the CI-1 to control trains in a large layout room you can use a long USB extension cord to place the CI-1 in a central location that can reach everywhere.  It also works with Railpro repeaters, the same as the HC so if you have Railpro power supplies then the signal is repeated through those.

Presuming the CI-1 is a USB2 device then the length limit of the USB cable is about 5 metres (about 15 feet for most of you). There is no guarantee that it'll work on a cable that long though. If it's USB3 (not likely) then the length is 3 metres. There are ways to overcome that length using USB hubs or repeater cables, or USB over Ethernet.

I imagine the CI-1 has the same limitation of using only 4 repeaters?

- Tim

KPack

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 692
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #41 on: September 23, 2016, 12:44:06 PM »
Quote
I have to get some clarification on that, is the storage space same as the HC-2 or the same as RP Assistant? If it's as per the HC-2 then maybe the files are downloaded to the CI-1 before being passed onto an LM, or maybe RE is trying to make it work exactly like a HC-2. If it's the same as RPA then there's a good reason for it, which is due to how the files are stored.

The storage for the personal file on the HC Sim is 32MB.  I believe that's the same as the HC-2, but I could be wrong.  I don't think the files are downloaded to the CI-1....it is basically just a plug-in radio transmitter.  When you download files with the HC Sim it loads them onto the HC Sim just as it would for the HC-2.  In fact, you name your simulated HC as you would a real HC....it basically turns your computer into another controller, which is recognized by all other Railpro components and functions the same as them.

Quote
Presuming the CI-1 is a USB2 device then the length limit of the USB cable is about 5 metres (about 15 feet for most of you). There is no guarantee that it'll work on a cable that long though. If it's USB3 (not likely) then the length is 3 metres. There are ways to overcome that length using USB hubs or repeater cables, or USB over Ethernet.

The CI-1 is USB 3.0 compatible, which makes it backwards compatible with USB 2.0.  Not sure on the maximum length of the cable run, but the manual says that you can use "dozens of feet" in order to place the CI-1 where you want it.

Quote
I imagine the CI-1 has the same limitation of using only 4 repeaters?

Unsure, but most likely.  The HC-Sim is exactly like the HC-2 in function, which probably means that any limitations of the HC-2 would be in the HC-Sim. 


Something that may need to be clarified:  The CI-1 is just a USB-powered Direct Radio transmitter.  The CI-1 itself does not have any software, it is hardware only.  There is a separate program that is a free download called the HC Simulator (HC-Sim) that connects to the CI-1 and allows a computer to become an HC and send commands out through the CI-1.

-Kevin

Dean

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 192
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #42 on: September 27, 2016, 03:59:07 PM »
Can the CL-1 be attached to a smart phone that has a USB port?
Dean

KPack

  • Conductor
  • ****
  • Posts: 692
Re: CI-1 Available for Preorder from PDC.CA
« Reply #43 on: September 27, 2016, 04:06:06 PM »
Can the CL-1 be attached to a smart phone that has a USB port?

I'm sure you could "connect" it, but without the software to use it, it would have no function.  Right now the software is written for Windows only.  There is no mobile version and I'm not sure if that's in the plans or not.  Honestly, if you are going to use your phone to mimic a hand controller you might as well just get a real HC.  It has the knob that is far more accurate than any mouse wheel or phone touch screen, plus a much longer range than the CI-1.

-Kevin