Wangrow and NCE Corporation share development costs of some items and even manufacture items for common use. Jim Scorse of NCE Corporation does the basic design work and software development for the command stations, builds some of the components such as the 10-amp booster, small throttles and some decoders. Each manufacturer is responsible for their own command station and standard boosters. Wangrow builds the standard throttle and some decoders. The net result is that the three are sharing development costs, but more importantly, it means that in order to share all these different components they must be 100% interchangeable. For their customers it means that they can purchase any piece of equipment from one manufacturer and know it will work with their system: even throttles. Also, as long as one of the three remain in business there will be a continuing source of this equipment. To my knowledge this is the only arrangement of its kind.
Because the software is shared among the two manufacturers, there is no difference in system functions and capabilities. This is an advanced EPF system with all the whistles and bells and has been since SystemOne was released. Don Wangrow made an early decision to offer the advanced EPF functions over a year before they were adopted by the NMRA. This has kept SystemOne and NCE Corporation command stations in the lead when it comes to advanced command stations. One neat new feature added in the last software upgrade is activation of the macro function. Using macro programming, you can set up 200 individual routes with as many as ten switches in each route. Until the release of the Digitrax Chief, theirs was the only system with sufficient capacity and functionality to run large club-sized layouts. For example the system is designed for up to 63 throttles and 250 locomotives. However, to fully utilize this capacity you’d have to be controlling four locomotives with each throttle and you’d need over a dozen 10-amp boosters: that’s over 125 amps! So realistically, this system should handle just about any job you have for it.
Note : NCE released the Powerhouse Pro in 1998.