Latest update: 18 July 2015
PIKO offers three loco decoders. The #36120 and #36121 come with some extra wiring as they are specifically made for the BR 182/BR 218 and BR 80. Later, PIKO announced the #36122, a universal loco decoder suited for all their other models.
- 36120 Loco Decoder for BR 182 “Taurus” and BR 218 family
- 36121 Loco Decoder for BR 80
- 36122 Universal Loco Decoder for BR 24, BR 64, BR 194, BR 199, V 20, V 36, V 60, V 100, VT 11.5, VT 98, Mogul …
The big selling point for these PIKO decoders is that they are designed to be a direct swap for the existing analogue circuit board, which makes installation easy.
All three locomotive decoders offer the same set of features:
PIKO does not produce these decoder themselves. I believe the #36120 and #36121 decoders were made by Uhlenbrock in the early years (2007-2009?). They look very similar to the Uhlenbrock 77500 decoder.
In 2010, PIKO announced their G scale digital system in cooperation with Massoth. Apparently, Massoth also took over the decoder production, and now the #36120, #36121 and #36122 decoder are made by Massoth. The decoder specifications are very similar to the Massoth XL decoder.
Here’s a comparison between the #36121 decoder produced by Uhlenbrock (left) and later Massoth (right):