Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

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Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Burrell » Fri Mar 10, 2017 7:55 am

I recently placed an order from Slotcar Union for 2 of the Carson digital chips. For those unfamiliar, they are designed to fit in the pocket of DPR DPR (Digital Plug Ready) Scalectrix and Pioneer cars and allow those cars to run on Carrera digital tracks. They are simply plug-and-play. I thought I'd show some photos of the chips and how they worked initially.

I was curious about the chips when I first heard of them, but I didn't have any Scaectrix cars, so I didn't have a need for them. Then I purchased the Pioneer General Lee and General Grant, which both have a DPR chassis, and decided that this would be a good time to experiment with them. In all fairness, I did not NEED the Carson chips to make use of these cars on my Carrera track. I could have easily chipped them with Carrera chips. However, it wouldn't have been as easy as the Carson chip. Plus the cost of the Carson chip was more. Shipping from Europe was not bad. I added the Carrera Gulf Porsche 917K to my order, so shipping was about $20, but if I had only ordered 1 Carson chip, the total including shipping would have been $36.04. So definitely higher than a Carrera chip but not outrageously more expensive.

I have not done any advanced testing with the cars and I did not install lights. I simply put them in my two cars and tested if they would work on the track. I did no tuning to the cars either. These are straight from the box, Carson chip installed, and directly to the track.

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As you can see, there are two additional wire plugs to attach to lights. I have heard that in you hook up the lights, they will not work exactly as Carrera car lights work. I've heard they won't blink when you are low on fuel. But I cannot confirm this as I did not install lights.

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Here is the DPR plug before it has been unattached.

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Here's where the plug will go on the Carson chip. The two additional plugs are for front and rear lights.

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There was one slight alteration that I had to make. It took less than 30 seconds. There is a small tab inside the plug cavity.

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The IR bulb extrudes slightly from the Carson chip. The tab would not allow the chip to be inserted as the IR bulb was hitting it. I didn't want to force it, so I simply took an exact knife and removed the tab.

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After the tab was removed, the Carson chip fit perfectly. I do not know if this tab is also present in Scalextric cars as I do not have any.

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Finally here is the General Lee running on my Carrera digital track. Please pardon the poor video. I was holding my phone in one hand and the controller in the other, trying to watch the screen to make sure I kept the car in frame and still hit the lane changes.

Watch on youtube.com
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby BRS Hobbies » Fri Mar 10, 2017 11:44 am

Great job on the review! How does a Pioneer slot car run on your track in comparison to a Carrera D132 slot car? I was wondering if the motor speed and handling are fairly close or quite a bit different.

Best regards,
Brian
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Czar » Sat Mar 11, 2017 6:29 am

Thanks for the report, Burrell. I am glad to see the installation was simple and the results look very good. Also good to see the Carson company is moving digital racing to be more inclusive.
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Half Fast Slotter » Sat Mar 11, 2017 9:26 am

Thanks for taking the time for the quick review. The Carson chip is a lot quicker and cleaner installation, but if you add the lights you still have to get out the soldering iron. I have had trouble with three Scaleys I chipped/soldered where after a while they would not change lanes anymore. Still drove, but no lane change capability. Not sure if chip went bad or what. That has sadly kept me away from Scaleys. My hypothesis is that the Scaley motor is rated at 12V vs. the 14.8 of the Carrera power supply. No proof. The Carson chip may very well solve that potential issue for me. Worth a try for that reason alone.
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Burrell » Sat Mar 11, 2017 7:16 pm

BRS Hobbies wrote:Great job on the review! How does a Pioneer slot car run on your track in comparison to a Carrera D132 slot car? I was wondering if the motor speed and handling are fairly close or quite a bit different.

Best regards,
Brian


The Pioneer did not handle nearly as well as a Carrera car on my track straight from the box. However I started a little bit of tuning on it and started getting better results. Basic lubrication and adding a little weight reduced the time by 1 second. I do not have any aftermarket tires that fit the wheels right now. But I think that adding Paul Gage tires, trimming the chassis, and experimenting with the weight placement a little more could make the car competitive. I did notice that I was deslotting in curves on the track that I have never desolated on. I don't know if this should be attributed to the guide or exactly what, but I'm going to keep working with it.

For the chip itself, I ran the car in several heats with Bruce Yingling's software and the pit stops worked flawlessly. I also had no issues with lane changes. However, the software did fail to count 2 laps as the car crossed the finish line. And it definitely was not a fuel issue as my tank was not on empty. This only happened twice over several laps, but I thought it was worth noting.
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby R/TRandy » Sun Mar 12, 2017 9:49 am

Burrell,
A nice well done write-up!
These are nice chips and a great addition to digital. Another advantage to them, if for some reason you decide to sell the car you can just put the original DPR door back in and have an unaltered car.
That tab you trimmed from the DPR opening could be just on Pioneer cars. I just did the Scalextric Javelin and it did not have it on it. Although I did not use the Carson chip for this one.
Randy
P.S. Glad to see you picked up the Carrera Gulf Porsche 917K!
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby patwa » Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:16 am

Just a quick 2 cents worth for half fast slotter ,
Half Fast Slotter wrote:Thanks for taking the time for the quick review. The Carson chip is a lot quicker and cleaner installation, but if you add the lights you still have to get out the soldering iron. I have had trouble with three Scaleys I chipped/soldered where after a while they would not change lanes anymore. Still drove, but no lane change capability. Not sure if chip went bad or what. That has sadly kept me away from Scaleys. My hypothesis is that the Scaley motor is rated at 12V vs. the 14.8 of the Carrera power supply. No proof. The Carson chip may very well solve that potential issue for me. Worth a try for that reason alone.
that the SSD system also runs 15V. Sorry .
real racecars don't have doors.
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby noddaz » Thu May 04, 2017 7:15 pm

I bought these also. And earlier this week was practicing on a Carrera track with my Scaley Javelin. It ran really well. Had good speed against the Carreras. I like it and will have to buy a few more.
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Josh S » Thu May 04, 2017 8:01 pm

patwa wrote:Just a quick 2 cents worth for half fast slotter ,
Half Fast Slotter wrote:Thanks for taking the time for the quick review. The Carson chip is a lot quicker and cleaner installation, but if you add the lights you still have to get out the soldering iron. I have had trouble with three Scaleys I chipped/soldered where after a while they would not change lanes anymore. Still drove, but no lane change capability. Not sure if chip went bad or what. That has sadly kept me away from Scaleys. My hypothesis is that the Scaley motor is rated at 12V vs. the 14.8 of the Carrera power supply. No proof. The Carson chip may very well solve that potential issue for me. Worth a try for that reason alone.
that the SSD system also runs 15V. Sorry .


Could it hurt the chips or motors if running over 15V?
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby buspor63 » Fri May 05, 2017 9:36 pm

Josh S wrote:
patwa wrote:Just a quick 2 cents worth for half fast slotter ,
Half Fast Slotter wrote:Thanks for taking the time for the quick review. The Carson chip is a lot quicker and cleaner installation, but if you add the lights you still have to get out the soldering iron. I have had trouble with three Scaleys I chipped/soldered where after a while they would not change lanes anymore. Still drove, but no lane change capability. Not sure if chip went bad or what. That has sadly kept me away from Scaleys. My hypothesis is that the Scaley motor is rated at 12V vs. the 14.8 of the Carrera power supply. No proof. The Carson chip may very well solve that potential issue for me. Worth a try for that reason alone.
that the SSD system also runs 15V. Sorry .


Could it hurt the chips or motors if running over 15V?


Half Fast, were the chips in the Scaley cars Carrera or Carson? Josh, Either way, I suspect the chip should be rated to handle the 14.5v Carrera PS produce. Additionally, by the time it hits the rails, the CU has dropped it by another .5-1v. Both motors draw about the same current, however the Scaley motore usually spins more RPM at the same voltage. Usually what kills a digital chip is high amp draw, unless your running Slot.it type motors in MAGNUT cars, you won't have a problem with the Carrera chip.
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Josh S » Sat May 06, 2017 5:52 am

buspor63 wrote:Half Fast, were the chips in the Scaley cars Carrera or Carson? Josh, Either way, I suspect the chip should be rated to handle the 14.5v Carrera PS produce. Additionally, by the time it hits the rails, the CU has dropped it by another .5-1v. Both motors draw about the same current, however the Scaley motore usually spins more RPM at the same voltage. Usually what kills a digital chip is high amp draw, unless your running Slot.it type motors in MAGNUT cars, you won't have a problem with the Carrera chip.


It is Carson chips. I was, however, running with the 1/24 PS that runs at 18v. We were only running about half speed, though. I think I put the speed setting on 6/10 when running at 18 volts. Could that still bother the chip? Do I need to drop the voltage on my new adjustable PS when running these cars?
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Drewbert34 » Sat May 06, 2017 7:58 am

Josh S wrote:
buspor63 wrote:Half Fast, were the chips in the Scaley cars Carrera or Carson? Josh, Either way, I suspect the chip should be rated to handle the 14.5v Carrera PS produce. Additionally, by the time it hits the rails, the CU has dropped it by another .5-1v. Both motors draw about the same current, however the Scaley motore usually spins more RPM at the same voltage. Usually what kills a digital chip is high amp draw, unless your running Slot.it type motors in MAGNUT cars, you won't have a problem with the Carrera chip.


It is Carson chips. I was, however, running with the 1/24 PS that runs at 18v. We were only running about half speed, though. I think I put the speed setting on 6/10 when running at 18 volts. Could that still bother the chip? Do I need to drop the voltage on my new adjustable PS when running these cars?

Josh, it's amps not volts that is danger to a chip.

As long as you stay within the amps of the CU (which you have to, else fry the CU) and don't impede the path of the cars at full throttle (meaning don't try and push a wrecked car out of the way around the track at full throttle) than the Carson chips should be as robust as the Carrera chips.

Another one that could potentially be bad is sanding tires. Not only does this strain the chip but I've had hot motors cause plastic pinion slippage as a result. I've also seen smoke off a Carrera chip trying to sand Porches 917-30 tires...and it still runs just fine!

You'll be fine. Your voltage is being modulated, anyway. What that means is, of the 18v your fancy dancy new power supply is set at, only 16.5ish (or so) actually is reaching the rails. On top of that reduction, you are further reducing that voltage through programming your chip w/CU. Finally, the chip itself modulates that voltage up and down, so it's not constant; thereby, making it able to handle higher voltages, due to the nature of how it handles the voltage.
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby Josh S » Sat May 06, 2017 8:10 am

Thanks for the info!
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby DaveKennedy » Thu May 11, 2017 8:20 am

An excellent and informative review, thanks!
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Re: Quick Carson Digital Chip (D132) First Impressions

Postby edmagner » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:24 am

I just noticed that Professor Motor is now carrying the Carson Carrera DPR chip on this side of the Atlantic - catalog # is CR500707130 - price is $ 38.99
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