NCE DCC System Power

The Purpose of this webpage it to provide background and a complete list of compatible power supplies that will work with your specific NCE DCC system.

in this section are:

1) BACKGROUND
2) NOTES ON PURCHASING DC POWER SUPPLIES FOR 5A BOOSTERS.
3) NOTES ON FINDING AN AC POWER SUPPLY.
4) AC/DC POWER SUPPLY SELECTION TABLE


1) BACKGROUND

All NCE systems have a step down switching power supply who's DC output:

1) sets and regulates the DCC track voltage.
2) sets the maximum booster current (Booster current rating).

The only question is where is the Switching Power Supply.  There always one found in one of two places.

a) Any NCE system that DOES include Power Supply, they will plug directly into an AC outlet.  These are NCE specific AC-DC Switching Power Supplies that step down the 240/120VAC line to a DC suitable for track power.  The DC Output of this power supply may or many not have a voltage switch that sets the DCC track voltage.  All the Booster does is convert the DC power into DCC power.

b) Any NCE DCC system that DOES NOT include a Power Supply, the customer must be purchased and external one separately.  The customer has a free choice to purchase an AC transformer or an AC-DC power supply of any kind provided they meet the specifications listed below.  The booster in these system have a built in switching power supply that converts the raw low voltage AC or DC power on the input terminals of the booster to DC suitable to track power.  It then coverts the DC power into DCC power.  THERE IS NO PERFORMANCE OR HEAT PENALTY IN CHOOSING AN AC OR A DC POWER SUPPLY.  No FAN is needed.  The internal switching power supply inside the booster works with both types efficiently.  You can also use a AC or DC power supply with a current rating that is greater than the booster with no consequences.

Going forward, NCE will only ship the type "a" power supply with the exception of 10Amp booster.


2) NOTES ON PURCHASING DC POWER SUPPLIES FOR 5A BOOSTERS.

Lab static bench testing show that to maintain a full regulated track voltage under a continuous 5A operation condition, the minimum input voltage must be 20V at 5A.  Running under 20V will still allow the booster to perform and delivery full 5A of power but the track voltage will no longer be regulated and sag.  There is no harm in allowing this to happen.  Most layouts, by far, will never reach this operating condition.  You can also use any DC power supply with a current rating that is greater than the booster's with no consequences.  But this will not address the voltage sag issue because the problem is inside the NCE booster.  That said be careful of using and distributing such high power and provide circuit breaker protection on the power supply output.


3) NOTES ON FINDING AN AC POWER SUPPLY.

The electronic industry is moving away from AC transformers.  Modern AC-DC switching power supplies of comparable specs are more efficient, smaller, weigh and cost less.  The driving force behind this are worldwide green initiatives.  At the time of this writing almost all AC transformer solutions are gone and at the same time so are the boosters that accept AC input.  Today your best bet is to get a DC power supply or find a surplus AC transformer that is compatible.  You can also use a AC power supply with a current rating that is greater than the booster's with no consequences.  That said be careful of using and distributing such high power and provide circuit breaker protection on the transformer output.


4) AC/DC POWER SUPPLY SELECTION TABLE
 
In the Best, Better and Acceptable columns are model numbers of various power supply model numbers from various manufactures. 

TO BE CLEAR. THE POWER SUPPLIES LISTED HERE ARE NOT ALL FROM NCE.
Pxxx  series is a NCE Brand Power supply.
PSxxx series is a Digitrax Brand Power Supply.
MFxxx series is a DCC Specialties Brand Power Supply.

Power Supply models in bold are still in production.  However may hobby shops may still have old power supplies in stock.

To learn more about the specific Power Supply model names and specification listed below, go here: DCC Power Supplies/Xmfrs (US)

Last Table Update: 3/16/2013
DCC MFG
DCC
Product
DCC
Product
Status
Current
Rating
Power
Supply
Included?
AC
Volt
Range
DC
Volt
Range
Do not exceed
Maximum
Best
Power
Supply
Better
Power Supply
Acceptable
Power Supply
 Not
Recommended
Power Supply
Notes
NCECS01Discontinued1.5ANo14-1818-2419.2VAC 28VDC
Any compatible AC or DC power supply.P515
P315

Command Station Only. No booster.
NCECS02OK1.5ANo14-1818-2419.2VAC 28VDC
Any compatible AC or DC power supply.P515
P315

 Command Station Only. No booster.
========================================================
NCEPowerCabOK
1.5A/3A
YES
No
10-15

P114

PS314

1
NCESB3Discontinued
3A
No
15-1618
24VAC
36VDC
P315
P515
PS315
PS314
6
NCEDB3Discontinued
3A
No
15-16
18
24VAC
36VDC
P315
P515
PS315
PS314
6
NCESB3aDiscontinued
5A
No
14-18
18-2424VAC
30VDC

MF615
P515 or
PS515
PS514
P514

NCE
DB3a
Discontinued
5A
No
14-18
18-2424VAC
30VDC

MF615P515 or
PS515
PS514
P514

NCESB5OK5AYESNoN/AN/AP514No ChoiceNo ChoiceNo Choice8
NCEDB5OK5AYESNoN/AN/AP514N0 ChoiceNo ChoiceNo Choice8
========================================================
NCEPowerProOK
5A
No
14-1818-2419.2VAC
28VDC

MF615P515 or
PS515
PS514
P514
CS02 + PB105 inside.
NCEPB105Discontinued

5A
No
14-1818-2419.2VAC
28VDC

MF615P515 or
PS515
PS514
NCEPB205Discontinued
5A x 2
No16-22
18-32

PS2012
(G)

NCE Brutus
P1018

2, 5
NCEPB205aDiscontinued
5A x 2
No
14-18
18-24
19.2VAC
28VDC
PS2012
+YC52
(HO)
MF615
x 2
P515 or
PS515
x 2
PS514 x 2
P514 x 2
3, 4, 7
NCEPB110Discontinued
10A
No
16-22
18-32

PS2012
(G)

NCE Brutus
P1018

5
NCEPB110aOK
10A
No
16-22
24-32
24VAC
36VDC
PS2012
(G)

NCE Brutus
P1018

5
NCE
PB5
OK
5A
YES
No
N/AN/AP514No ChoiceNp ChoiceNo Choice8














Not recommended means the power supply will not satisfy the booster's voltage requirements even though it has the current capability.

DC power supplies:  P114, PS314, P514 & PS514.  All other models listed are AC transformer power supplies.

NOTES:

1) The PowerCab can support higher current (3A) than allowed by the provided DC power supply if you have Version 1.65 software installed.  It will still protect itself if there is a current overload.  However, the PowerCab will get hot under a continuous short circuit event.  Although technically allowed by NCE per the specifications, I am not recommending using a 3A power supply as the best way to upgrade.  Stick with the P114 provided power supply and if you need more power, upgrade to a SB5.

2) The PB205 is a dual 5A boosters in a single box that NCE no longer makes.  It uses a single 10A external power supply.  Inside the box, this power feeds a common internal track voltage regulating power supply.  The track voltage regulating power supply is then shared with both boosters.

3) The PB205a is a dual 5A boosters in a single box that NCE no longer makes.  It uses two independent 5A power supplies, one for each booster.  The PB205a is literally 2 PB105's in a single box.  Nothing is electrically shared between the two booster other than the common metal case which also serves as the booster common connection between the two boosters.

4) The PS2012 should be used in the HO scale voltage mode.   This voltage setting does NOT determine the track voltage.  The booster still does that.

5) The PS2012 should be used in the G scale voltage mode.  This voltage setting does NOT determine the track voltage.  The booster still does that.

6) The Digitrax power supply will require modification by removal of the 2.5mm Round plug and exposing bare wires for connection.

7) The YC52 is a special two-way splitter (Y) cable that take a single input and provides two outputs with each output protected by a set of 5A thermally self resetting fuse (Poly Fuses).  No need to buy replacement fuses.   The cable is sold by Digitrax and available separately.  However, it is included with every Digitrax PS2012 power supply.

8) There is no need to purchased another power supply.  Use the one that is provided with the booster.   If a replacement is needed, contact NCE.  The Power Supply has a voltage switch on it that sets the track voltage.  There is no adjustment capability.


10/26/16
10/30/16