OPS Mode (POM) vs. Program Track Mode (Service Mode)

Try multiple locomotives before assuming you have a system problem! Read this entire article before trying to reset a decoder!


Programming on the main (POM) / Ops mode programming:

Program Track mode also known as Service Mode Programming:


1. Remember that you can only READ CVs when your DCC system is in Program Track Mode / Service Mode. Note the use of the word mode. This does not pertain to physical connections. Example: The Power Cab has a single two wire track connection. This means program track mode will make changes to any locomotive on the track connected to those two wires. The Power Pro, Ph-Pro, Powerhouse and CS02, all have dedicated programming track outputs labelled as such on the front of the box for this specific purpose. The SB5 does NOT have a program track MODE or a programming track output.

2. When trying to read a decoder and you get a manufacturer ID of "255" and / or multiple readings of 255 from the decoder for other CVs too, that is an error message. A message of "Cannot Read CV" is also an error message. The system asked the decoder a question but did not get a response back from the decoder. Check all your connections and track. Try a different decoder or locomotive for comparison.

3. When trying to read CVs of a SOUND decoder on an older Power Pro / Ph-Pro system box you might need a programming track booster like the Soundtraxx PTB-100. Do not use a DCC Specialties "PowerPax"! Do not connect any type of programming booster to the Power Cab.

4. The manufacturer ID (value) of CV8 is for the locomotive decoder you are programming and not the system you are programming with. The manufacturer id is the value of CV8. Example: CV8=141 means the locomotive decoder was made by Soundtraxx.

5. To learn more about a configuration variable (CV) and how to change them with an NCE system, read this article:

6. It is always a good idea reboot / power cycle your system and the decoder after a factory reset. Some decoders might not be completely reset until the power is removed and restored. Similar to rebooting a PC after it is updated.

7. For even MORE go here: ================================================

Every DCC Decoder has an ID code that tell you who made it.

The Value in CV 8 as per the list below.

1: CML Electronics Limited
2: Train Technology
11: NCE Corporation
12: Wangrow
13: Public Domain & Do-It-Yourself Decoders
14: PSI - Dynatrol
15: Ramfixx Technologies (Wangrow)
17: Advanced IC Engineering, Inc.
18: JMRI
19: AMW
20: T4T - Technology for Trains GmbH
21: Kreischer Datentechnik
22: KAM Industries
23: S Helper Service
25: Team Digital, LLC
26: MBTronik - PiN GITmBH
27: MTH Electric Trains, Inc.
28: Heljan A/S
29: Mistral Train Models
30: Digsight
31: Brelec
32: Regal Way Co. Ltd
34: Aristo-Craft
35: Elektronik & Modell Produktion
36: DCCConcepts
37: NAC Services, Inc.
38: Broadway Limited Imports, LLC
39: Educational Computer, Inc (
40: KATO Precision Models
41: Passmann Modellbahnzubehoer
42: Digirails
43: Ngineering
45: ANE Model Co., LTD.
46: GFB Designs
47: Capecom
48: Hornby Hobbies Ltd.
49: Joka Electronic
50: N & Q Electronics
51: DCC Supplies, Ltd
52: Krois-Modell
53: Rautenhaus Digital
54: TCH Technology
55: QElectronics GmbH
56: LDH
57: Rampino Elektronik
58: KRES GmbH
59: Tam Valley Depot
60: Bluecher-Elektronik
61: TrainModules
62: Tams Elektronik GmbH
63: Noarail
64: Digital Bahn
66: Railnet Solutions, LLC
68: MAWE Elektronik
69: E-Modell
71: New York Byano Limited
72: MTB Model
73: The Electric Railroad Company
74: PpP Digital
75: DigiTools Electronics Servicing and Contractor Ltd.
76: Auvidel
77: LS Models Sprl
85: Uhlenbrock Elektronik GmbH
87: RR-CirKits
95: Sanda Kan Industrial (1981) Ltd.
97: Doehler & Haas
99: Lenz Elektronik GmbH
101: Bachmann Trains
103: Nagasue System Design Office
105: Computer Dialysis France
109: Viessmann Modellspielwaren GmbH
111: aber & Koenig Electronics GmbH
113: QS Industries
115: Dietz Modellbahntechnik
117: cT Elektronik
119: W. S. Ataras Engineering
123: Mssoth Elektronik, GmbH
125: ProfiLok Modellbahntechnik GmbH
127: Atlas Model Railroad Co., Inc.
129: Digitrax
131: Trix Modelleisenbahn
132: ZTC Controls Ltd.
133: Intelligent Command Control
135: CVP Products
139: RealRail Effects
141: Throttle-Up (Soundtraxx)
143: Model Rectifier Corp.
145: Zimo Elektronik
147: Umelec Ing. Buero
149: Rock Junction Controls
151: Electronic Solutions Ulm GmbH & Co KG
153: Train Control Systems
155: Gebr. Fleischmann GmbH & Co.
157: Kuehn Ing.
159: LGB (Ernst Paul Lehmann Patentwerk)
161: Modelleisenbahn GmbH (formerly Roco)
163: WP Railshops
165: Model Electronic Railway Group
170: AuroTrains
173: Arnold - Rivarossi
186: br /AWA Modellspielwaren GmbH & Co.
204: Con-Com GmBH
225: Elproma Electronics Poland
238: NMRA reserved


mfg id 8 - Broadway Limited (BLI)

To use ops mode programming / POM, you must disable voice read back. To do this, set CV62=0 to turn it off. All programming must be done using POM / Programming on the Main / OPS mode. Factory Reset CV 8 to a value of 8.

mfg id 101 - Bachmann sound decoders / Soundtraxx Tsunami
try setting cv 8 to value of 8.
tsunami can only program short address on program track
to identify a decoder as a Tsunami - function 3 , is short whistle
mfg. id 11 - NCE

factory reset CV30 to value of 2

factory defaults:
cv1= short address, default is 3
cv29= default is 6 which is: short address, factory speed table, 28 steps, dual mode on,
cv19 =0 disables consisting
mfg id - 151 ESU Loksound
Reset CV8 = 8
The ESU Loksound V4.0 & Select decoders use a multiplier factor of 0.25 rather than the NMRA standard factor of 0.896 for the values of Acceleration (CV 3) and Deceleration (CV 4) rates. This means that you will need to enter a value nearly 4 times as great (3.6) in the Acceleration and Deceleration CVs to achieve the same rate as in a LokSound V3.5 or almost any other brand of decoder. This can be a problem with the NCE Momentum button, particularly if you have V4.0 (or Select) and other model decoders in the same consist.
mfg id 127 Lenz
Set CV8 to a value of 33 then tilt loco for 7 seconds to reset decoder after changing.
mfg 113 QSI - Reset must be done using POM / Programming on the Main / OPS mode

To use ops mode programming / POM must disable voice read back- Set CV62=0 to it turn off

Sometimes have background noise / static - known issue.

Set CV23 and CV24 to 0 to disable momentum
QSI locos might have a reed switch and magnet wand to turn on.
Generally requires Programming Track Booster like a Soundtraxx PTB100. Do NOT use a DCC Specialties PowerPAX! To use ops mode programming / POM must disable voice read back- Set CV62=0 to turn off
The Broadway, Atlas, and Lifelike equipped with QSI (ID 113) DCC sound engines use a different reset procedure. Check the manual that came with the engine. Some use a magnetic “wand” for the reset. If there is no "wand" then open the engine or access hatch and find the reset jumper. Remove the jumper and restore the track power. There will be an audible acknowledgment from the engine at the end of the reset sequence (usually 3 toots of the whistle/horn). Replace the jumper and test out using address 3. If a "wand" is present, locate the internal reset reed switch and place the "wand" over it for a moment. When track power is restored the engine will go through its reset procedure and let you know when done. To find the internal reset (reed) switch, place the engine on active track. Slowly move the "wand" over the top of the engine or tender until the engine alerts you, audibly responds, by a message.

QSI also has a software reset using the following multi step procedure:
(1) Place engine on main track if it is still responding to its address. If not responding you may need to use the program track.
(2) Set CV49 to 128
(3) Set CV50 to 255
(4) Set CV56 to 113 As engine resets you will hear the 3 toots.
Test out the locomotive using address 3.
QSI also has some selective resets.
mfg 27 MTH - Not 100% DCC compatible! Designed for DCS not DCC

To reset MTH to the address to factory default 3:

1. Set the engine on the main, enter loco number 55 into your cab, press enter

2. go into program on main / OPS ode programming

3. program loco number 55,

4. set CV 55 with a value of 55.

exit out, tilt loco or reboot your entire system.
and call up loco 3,
perform start up by press F3 to start loco.

F7 to cycle thru 9 volume levels
F8 for smoke

A reminder that MTH decoders are primarily designed for the Proprietary MTH DCS system. This means that many functions and settings of an MTH loco might not be available under DCC.




Mfg. ID in CV8

CV for reset + value



CV8 = 33



CV30 = 2



CV8 = 8

LokSound (ESU)


CV8 = 8

Train Control System


CV8 = 8


CV30 = 2

SoundTraxx: DSDLC, DSX Tsunami (1)


old - CV 30 = 2

newer - CV8=8

MRC (New) (2)


CV125 = 1

QSI (1)


See Below

(1) When used with the Power Pro / PH-Pro may need a Programming Track Booster like the Soundtraxx PTB-100

(2) Generally is not reliable in Read-Back.


Programming on the main (POM) / Ops mode programming:

Program Track mode also known as Service Mode Programming:




Decoder reset.docx (20 KB)
Manufacturer ids.txt (3 KB)



A long winded explanation by way of analogy:

  1. Programming on the main (POM) / Ops mode programming:  Example: Dear Mr. Loco number 3, Please change this CV for me please.  I hope you can hear me but I know you cannot respond and confirm that you did what I asked you to do. This happens under full track power. As long as you can control the loco in some fashion using a loco address: blink the headlights, move the loco around. The chances are very high this method will be successful even though you have no way of getting any sort of direct confirmation that the CV was actually changed. If you go back in to the SAME CV again using POM, you MIGHT see the value that you put in previously. Note****   You are NOT reading it from the Decoder! The system is only remembering that last command you did.                             
  2. Program Track mode also known as Service Mode Programming: When you enter into this mode a sound decoder SHOULD shut the sound off!!  If it does not do that, then the chances that it is also actually listening and responding to your commands are very slim. Service Mode does not know or care which loco is on the tracks. This method is: send a command / wait for a response. This method uses a maximum of 250 mA track power and will detect short circuits. Not all decoders support this mode. Do not assume that your decoder supports this mode unless the manufacturer expressly says so. If you attempt to Read a CV, you should get a value or you will get an error message like “Cannot Read CV”. If you attempt to change a CV, the decoder should give you some sort of response in return. This response can be a flashing light, the loco will click, or the loco  will move briefly. This is the locos method of waving a hand and saying “ heard your request and tried to do what you asked”.   You should then be able to go in and verify that the changes were made.
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