FAQ:NCE Serial Communications

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NCE / Wangrow Serial Communications

The serial port works at 9600 bps. Setting it to a faster speed will not work, as the system lacks the handshaking capability to manage communications. JMRI does not allow speeds greater than 9600 for this reason.

This mostly impacts the Power House Pro and the Wangrow System One command station. (NCE supplied the software to Wangrow.)

NCE Serial and USB Interfaces

A number of commands present when using a serial cable are not available when using the NCE USB interface. Of the commands that are available, the computer interface can send any command it wants.


For connection to a computer, the following interfaces are compatilble:


  1. Power Cab
  2. SB3
  3. SB3A
  4. SB5

Serial Connection

  1. Power Pro DCC System

A USB to Serial bridge can be used for this connection.


The NCE USB uses the SiLabs CP2102 chipset. Use the SiLabs CP210x drivers from SiLabs available here. There is a universal driver for Windows10. You also need to know if your OS version is 32 or 64 bit, and install the appropriate driver.

Limitations of the USB Interface

All Systems

Clock unavailable. Turnout monitoring unavailable.


No programming track support, operations mode only.

Power Pro

No multifunction decoder programming.

Auxiliary Input Unit (AUI) Support

  • USB versions 7.x and above, Smartbooster with firmware version 1.65 and above support the AUI
  • USB versions less than 7.x, no AIU support