Hornby launches mobile phone control for analogue trains

Hornby GM6000Hornby has launched a system allowing the control of analogue (DC) model trains from mobile phones and tablets.

Named HM6000, using the Hammant and Morgan brand that Hornby purchased in the 1980s, the system enables model railways using analogue control to be operated using a free-to-download mobile phone app, available for both iPhone and Android.

The system replaces the standard controller of an analogue model railway with a Bluetooth-enabled unit. This connects to the track as normal but then allows iPhones and Android devices to control the trains instead of using the traditional ‘knob’-style control.

As with standard analogue model railways, only one train can be controlled on a circuit at once. The HM6000 has two track outputs, so two circuits can be operated concurrently.

Screen shot of the Hornby HM|DC app for controlling analogue (DC) model railways

Interestingly, the app – HM|DC – includes an basic OO gauge track layout designer. It comes with a library of standard Hornby track parts and can produce a list of the required parts, ready for ordering.

The HM6000 is priced at £36.99, but a transformer is required, which is priced separately, and is available here.

MRE will be reviewing the HM6000 in the hopefully not-too-distant future. If you’ve used the HM6000 I’d and others would love to hear your initial thoughts, sare them in a comment below.

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