Decoder Update Device - MXULF and MXULFA
   Currently (since 2015) only the MXULFA version (the version with a screen) is available!

MXULF (without Display)


MXULFA (with Display)

The software of the MXULF (A) is in constant development, and, depending on delivery date, a specific software development stage is included. On the ZIMO website under the Menu "Update & Sound", the latest update for the MXULF is available and can be downloaded and installed via USB stick. NOTE: the number of the software development stage does NOT correspond directly to the software version number, please refer to the operating manual for details.

- Software Development Stage 1 (Update and Sound Loading) - since the end of 2011 (start of  MXULF)
- Stage 3 (driving operation for its own operation element SUSI sound loading) - since Dec. 2012
- Stage 5 (CV programming, synchronous update for accessory decoders) - since Oct. 2013
- Stage 6 (Operation of MXULF(A) via Computer using USB connection) - since Sept. 2014
Further stages of expansion - RailCom, use as small command station. - Planned

First steps MXULF: Installation and configuration tutorial [part 1]


MXULF: decoder sound load over track tutorial part 2

MXULF: decoder sound load over SUSI tutorial part 3

MXULF: Decoder-software update with a PC part 4

MXULF and its functions with a USB Teil 5

MXULF and especially MXULFA (the version with display) are more than simple decoder update devices, they are rather designed as small digital systems. The tasks include (in Software Stage 5) :

  • Loading new software versions (software updates) from a USB stick into ZIMO decoders of all kinds (locomotive, function, accessory decoder), while the vehicle with the decoder is on the "update track" ,

  • Synchronous update for already installed accessories of the ZIMO MX820, MX821 decoder generation ,
  • Loading sound projects from the USB stick into ZIMO sound decoders, while the vehicle is on the "update track" ,
  • Fast Sound loading (about 1 min instead of 10 min) via SUSI connections to the decoder ,
  • Loading sounds parallely into two ore more decoders via SUSI-interfaces
  • Driving and function switching for one address using the controls of the MXULF (scrolling wheel, 4 keys and LEDs) to test the recently changed decoder,

  • Programming and reading the CVs of the connected decoder or vehicle, writing and checking the load code for coded Sound Projects

  • All of the above tasks can be also controlled by the computer; no USB stick is then used, but all data (software update files, sound projects) are transmitted via the USB interface (client). Most computer programs can be used, such as ZSP (ZIMO), ZCS (Manhart), ADaPT (Sperrer), et al.

MXULF can be used as an inexpensive workshop or test system for many aspects, even applicable for foreign decoders (obviously not for software updates and loading sound projects).

Operating and display elements of the MXULF: 4 buttons, 1 scrolling wheel, and 8 two-color LEDs.
External connections: screw terminals for supply rail (update track), "SUSI" connector, USB (client, to computer), USB (host, for USB stick).

The decoder update device is supplied in two versions: MXULF and MXULFA. The difference is in the display (2 x 16 characters), which only the MXULFA has. It is particularly important in driving and programming operations, almost indispensable.

The MXULF can be powered from any voltage source (DC 12 - 20V, AC 10 - 16V) . Therefore, no power supply is included, but if needeed it can be acquired as accessory.

MXULF during Decoder update or Sound Project loading:


Decoder Software Update and Sound Project Loading with MXULF from USB-Stick:

First, power must be connected (for example, a main power supply or to the rails), and a LED shows, if the power is enough. Then the device is connected to the decoder, either directly to the locomotive with the decoder or via the rail ("update track") with the locomotive on it. Another LED indicates that the ZIMO decoder has been detected.

The respective LED shows whether a decoder update collection file (zsu file.) and/or a sound project (.zpp file) was found when the USB drive is queried. With the key in question (1 or 2), the update process or the sound file loading is started (you see flashing green LEDs).

The LEDs will then show success (steady green) or failure (flashing red) of the update/load.

Driving with the MXULF:

About the R key : A long press calls up the menu, where the common option FAHR for DRIVE is already preset; press the R-key briefly to switch to drive mode, one of the direction LEDs indicates this. First MXULF automatically reads from the connected decoder some CVs (which can be monitored on the display), in particular the address (this does not need to be set in advance, as usual). With the scroll wheel, the speed is controlled, with the R button you can control the direction of travel (or fast stop), and with the buttons 1, 2, 3, the first 3 functions (and by long-pressing the buttons you switch between the ranges F0, F1, F2 then F3, F4, F5 then F6, F7, F8, as shown on the display.


Typical Screens in Driving Mode and when programming CVs


Using the MXULF(A) from a Computer:

The USB (client) interface MXULF (MXULFA) can be used with two different protocols (for two different tasks) :

1. Decoder software update and sound project uploading (with ZSP software, ZCS and ZIRC); this is done with a special protocol, which has already been used in the past between MX31ZL and the computer, and

2. to configure (i.e. CV programming and monitoring) and driving from the computer through the so-called "Binary Protocol", as has been used already on the RS232 interface of the "old" basic unit MX1 (generations MX1 "compact", "multiprotocol" ...). This has already been tested (as of October 2014) with ZCS, ADaPT and TrainProgrammer.

The MXULF package contains a USB flash drive with the Windows drivers for MXULF, together with some software programs to update and configure ZIMO decoders.

  MXULF in Verbindung mit einem PC

The MXULF operation explained by Paul Chetter on a YouTube video.

Last update 2019 05 06