Whats your opinion on MTH Ho???

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by tzillion, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. tzillion

    tzillion New Member

    I currently have Lionel trains. due to cost and room i have always wanted to start building an HO layout. with the introduction to MTH ho the decision has been made easier. the features on these trains are a amazing. i was wondering from those who own some MTH HO what is their opinions on them compared to some of the other HO manufactures. thanks for your opinoin.
  2. diburning

    diburning Member

    They sound amazing. They are also very expensive.

    However, their quality leaves a lot to be desired. They have pretty much NO quality control. It will run and sound good at first, then it will fall apart after a couple weeks. That makes it not worth the $400+. If I wanted something without qualtiy control, I'd buy Athearn. At least Athearn prices their stuff appropriately for their quality.
  3. jgrepps

    jgrepps New Member

    I know someone that worked at MTH and he said that used to call it Mike's Train Hell. He didn't have anything good to say about them. I think I'll be staying away.
  4. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    I've heard both wonderful and not so great things about MTH trains.

    I personally don't consider them to be worth their price...the added features don't come close to making up for the added cost beyond Spectrum or Broadway Limited.

    I don't care for Athearn's new stuff as it is too specific to prototypes which have been widely produced and are of no interest to me.

    MTH has a bit of a bad name in HO because of their lack of desire to place nice. They have a proprietary DCC system which really ticks people off. In HO, all other DCC components are compatible with each other and this has caused it to really grow (the standards were based on Lenz's system in the 1990s). MTH locomotives have diminished capabilities on normal DCC systems...the most notable was that their K-4 could only achieve a max speed of around 50mph on a normal transformer due to its higher than normal motor voltage.

    What type of locomotives would you like have purchase? Do you plan to model a specific prototype, a free-lance road, or just have a random collection of locomotives?

    If you are planning to jump into HO, I'd recommend starting out with Spectrum steam locomotives and either MRC or NCE DCC. I don't think anything really compares to them on the value basis. Spectrum steam is typically on par with the stuff that cost 2x what it sells for, and much of it is sufficiently generic to be useful on both free-lance and road specific layouts.
    Generally, ignore the plain B-man stuff...the Spectrum is much better...
    Their 2-8-0 is what launched the modern era of HO steam locomotives.

    Athearn is classic for diesels...their Genesis line is competitive with Kato and Atlas...their standard line has long been the best value in diesels.
    Athearn also offers the old MDC Roundhouse line...but they are typically not up to modern detail standards.

    Broadway Limited is the HO equivalent to MTH (although a recent court case has resulted in some of BLI's stuff going to MTH due to an issue with BLI's Korean producer).

    Walthers now operates the Life Like Proto 2000 line...which has a nice slate of quality offerings (plain Life Like is toy stuff).

    There are also kits...Bowser is the source for Pennsy equipment...as well as a few others...but they can be detailed to look like brass importants and pull like nothing else, but they are not modern in technology.
    http://www.bowser-trains.com/Main HO.htm
  5. Notorious PL

    Notorious PL Thanks Loather!!

    MTh engines are great looking and sounding. Look at that new SD70ACe engine!! It is beautiful! I will be buying a few for sure!!
  6. BNSFsd60m

    BNSFsd60m New Member

    Notorious PL, a few?
    i thought to buy one (again, one), the SD70m-2 in cn livery, as at the beginning they say it will equipped with smoke system but apparently it wont
  7. toptrain1

    toptrain1 Member

    reply opinion

    MTH seams to be toy like. It doesn't make it bad. They have released some very intersting locos. I wish the price was better. The way it is at almost 63 and retired I'll never get one.
    toptrain frank
  8. toptrain1

    toptrain1 Member

    You shouldn't have to work on a new locomotive!
    toptrain frank
  9. diburning

    diburning Member

    Well, diesels shouldn't be billowing smoke unless they're about to blow so prototypically, they shouldn't have a smoke system.

    I really hate the DCS. I might buy a SD70ACe after the prices drop because of the DCS problem then rip out the DCS decoder and wire in a Digitrax one.

    If they had sound samples, that would be great. When I buy sound locos, I only buy them if they sound good.

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