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Hornby Select


Tom Davidson



Select R8213



With a 1.3amp output and single speed control, the Hornby Select seems is aimed at the simpler end of the DCC market. Although only a few different CVs can be altered (loco ID, direction, acceleration and deceleration rate), these cover the basics of DCC control and should prove adequate for the beginner. It would be nice to be able to specify the top speed, and perhaps change some other CVs, but these are features found on the more expensive Elite.


Ease of Use

I found the system extremely easy to set up, and the manual was easy to follow. Once you’ve got a loco set up with a decoder, it’s very easy to work out what’s going on and to program changes like acceleration rate. This is one of the real benefits of DCC in my eyes, the specification of inertia, and Hornby have done well to specify this on their budget DCC controller.



The main problem I found with this unit was the power supply socket, which would occasionally cut power to the unit if knocked slightly. This a fault I’ve also had on guitar pedals, and when the socket eventually works loose it requires resoldering. This fault did lead to an overall vibe of cheapness, also evident on the speed control knob. This didn’t seem to turn freely, as if there was a bit of sand stuck in the pot somewhere.



Overall, this a good entry level system. There are some clear limitations with the amount of CV programming that can be done, and with the dodgy power supply socket, but other than those slight problems it provides a good introduction to DCC.


Overall ranking



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