Best Wifi throttle for Iphone to JMRI/DCC++ EX?

Chris Hall Feb 17, 2021

  1. Chris Hall

    Chris Hall TrainBoard Member

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    Hi team!

    I'm getting danger close to having my DCC++ EX mega up and running on the layout connecting to JMRI on a RaPi 3b with the Steve Todd image. The plan is to use my Surface computer as the control panel and my iPhone as the throttle.

    My question is - whats the best Wifi throttle out there for the iPhone? I've seen a lot on the app store but would prefer to know which is the best one from the people who actually use them!
     
  2. Sumner

    Sumner TrainBoard Member

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    Well since no one else jumped in the one you seem to see first for the iphone is WiThrottle. If they don't cost anything I'd start there and try some others if there are others. I use EngineDriver but I'm an Android type guy.

    Sumner
     
  3. nscalestation

    nscalestation TrainBoard Supporter

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    I have been using WiThrottle Lite and I like it. Simple, but does what I need it to do and it was free.
     
  4. Mr. Trainiac

    Mr. Trainiac TrainBoard Member

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    WiThrottle for Apple and EngineDriver for Android are the big ones. WiThrottle has a lite and a paid version. The Lite has pretty much the same features as the full version, but the full version has command station (basic) consisting, which is nice to have.

    I downloaded the full version recently when I got my SPROG. Previous to that, I had been using the Lite version with my modular club's MRC Wi-Fi module.
     
    FlightRisk likes this.
  5. FlightRisk

    FlightRisk TrainBoard Member

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    There is lots coming down the pike. Keep an eye on the web page. We are working with vendors like Locontrol to work directly with DCC++EX in addition to JMRI. New throttles will be added soon. https://dcc-ex.com/throttles/index.html
     
    Chris Hall likes this.
  6. Michael Rupprecht

    Michael Rupprecht TrainBoard Member

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    Hi,

    I missed the "Track Power On Button" in WiThrottle Light. .....at least I could not find it. Is it in the paid version of WiTrottle? I found the SRCP clint for IOS, which worked as well and that has a "Power On Button". EngineDriver for Android comes also with Power On Button ....a bit hidden in the menu.

    By the way .... is there something close to/like the JMRI DecoderPro for IOS or Android?
     
    Mark Ricci likes this.
  7. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    I found the same issue with WiThrottle light and moved to SRCP. Extra plus is less scrolling on small display devices like my iPhone 8. Believe JMRI supports MAC OS X, Linux and Raspberry PI base OS's in addition to Windows.
     
  8. BigJake

    BigJake TrainBoard Member

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    That's an interesting idea. There is a way to run JMRI via a web interface, but I don't know if it includes DP.

    The primary advantage of DP is the ability to show not just the register bit/field contents, but what they mean. That takes a fair amount of screen real estate. Not sure how that would work out on a smart phone display, but it would be better on a tablet.

    I use a VNC app on my phone to shut down the Pi before I remove power, via the R-Pi GUI. I should get the RSS Button app set up for that, but I haven't got around to it yet. I certainly would not want to run DP via VNC on my phone for anything but the most simple tasks.
     
    Mark Ricci likes this.
  9. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    The JMRI web server, tested last month, provides an APP free way of running trains and turnouts but did not see any method for programming. More like Panel Pro. Assuming it's started, hit its IP, also same IP as shown in the JMRI WiThrottle server screen, and your in.

    I shutdown other devices using RDP from my small iPhone 8 screen, that's it. Can't imagine using VNC on the iphone to other than shut down JMRI-Pi unless the Hubble telescope is open for use so I 2nd BigJake.
     
    BigJake likes this.
  10. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    Like you, definitely don't like just pulling plug. Curious, ever explore safely shutting down Pi via pushbutton as described below.

    https://github.com/TonyLHansen/raspberry-pi-safe-off-switch/
     
  11. Chris Hall

    Chris Hall TrainBoard Member

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    When I first posted this thread I was exploring different options for controlling DCC++ via the pi, ended up having a good conversation with Steve Todd about his image and his response was that just pulling the plug was ok and in all the years he's run pi's there's never been an issue.

    That said I really wanted a way to be able to both shut down and reboot the pi without having to switch off the main power or use a device so I ended up creating a button on a small control panel that ran a simple script on start-up. Works really well - I love being able to just rock up to the layout, punch the button and a minute later start running trains.

    IMG_4505.jpg

    I had an LED that came on when JMRI was up and running plus the button on the right was originally going to start running the automation scripts but I have changed it to a track power button to solve the Withrottle lite power button issue.
     
    Mark Ricci and Sumner like this.
  12. Mark Ricci

    Mark Ricci TrainBoard Member

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    my preference is to shut down or reset as safely as possible Will be focused on power button approach. Decided to use SRCP throttle because less scrolling and power button but of course, once JMRI is up and pushes Function button labels out, hard to say which one I will use however, I'd likely end up with a 7 or 8" fire tablet and run Todd's Engine Driver. Think its the best..
     

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