Mar 30, 2017

Omicron vs. KoCoS? Part III


ELCOME Dear friends of protection and control technology! CMC 356 vs. ARTES 560 - 3rd round „Moreover“. It is a question which most of us have certainly asked ourselves and which should be answered at the latest when talking to the centralized purchasing department:

Which digital test device should be purchased?

Or: Which device is the better one?

We answer this question in our three-part series of the "The Sniff-Test" and compete the top dog, Omicrons CMC 356 against the underdog, the ARTES 560 of the company KoCoS.

After the unambiguous 2nd round, we come to the final and decisive 3rd round in this article. This time we are talking about the general conditions like acceptance, price or accessories.

Clear the ring: Get ready for the 3rd and final round!

Part 3 "Moreover"!

Omicron Vs. KoCoS

First we turn to an easy-to-ignore argument. The acceptance of the market, an aspect that you have to think about urgently.


Omicron and KoCoS, which were founded in the 1980s, initially specialized in different areas. Omicron developed test systems for secondary measuring and protection technology and KoCoS developed measuring and testing devices primarily in the field of primary technology. When KoCoS finally launched its first protection relay test system, Omicron had already launched the second generation of the CMC series. Accordingly, the experience and the market share were correspondingly high. This is the reason why Omicron has already established itself at a very early stage to a standard in the area of ​​secondary testing technology. Omicrons occ format advanced step by step to the industry standard, and has not changed much to this day.

If you are still free to decide whether to use the ARTES or the CMC as an operator, you have to take account of the current market situation as a service provider. The customer decides how his equipment and installations are tested. From our many years of experience, we know: the majority of the major customers in Germany raise Omicrons occ format to the standard and accept no other testing procedures. Our recommendation: Before you purchase a test instrument, you must definitely determine the target market and its boundary conditions.


We continue with the training offer for the devices, we start with KoCoS. At KoCoS, there are two protective training courses this year:

16.05. - 17.05.2017 Applications and test methods of selective protection technology

18.05.2017 Branch protection and distance protection

There is no product-specific training on ARTES at KoCoS, but an on-site consultation at the customer's home can certainly be agreed on request.

At Omicron, there is a rich offer of product trainings worldwide. In Germany and Austria alon are more than 40 training courses available, which are directly dealing with the CMC and the related software test universe.

Omicron also holds a yearly user conference with informative lectures and varied seminars. Here, Omicron brings much more life to the brewery.


Let's continue with the accessories. Those who have opted for a CMC356 can now order additional extensions for various tasks from a comprehensive accessory catalog, eg:.

CMControl P (touch panel for operation without PC)

IED scout

CMGPS 588 (external GPS antenna)

CPOL (Polarity Checker)

ARC 256x (test arc protection)

SER 1 (monitoring of LEDs)

CMLIB (test of sensor inputs)

In addition to the CPOL, which has already been mentioned several times in our other articles, we want to emphasize the GPS antennas CMGPS 588 and the ARC 256x. With the help of the GPS antennas it is possible to synchronize the tests of two CMC devices. For example, the tripping characteristic of a line differential protection, the protective relay of which is located a distance of several kilometers, can be tested.

The new ARC 256x offers possibilities for a comprehensive test of the arc protection of a switchgear. A xenon tube generates a light flash, which is recognized by the protection. In this way, the system can be tested from sensor to tripping.

The SER 1 and the CMLIB can also make life much more easy. The SER 1 enables the monitoring of light-emitting diodes. Thus, messages which are only assigned to one LED or can not be tested electrically for any reason can be triggered. CMLIB is used to feed measured variables to ABB and Siemens protective devices with sensor inputs. Thus the small signal output of the CMC can be used for simulating a Rogowski coil.

Compared to this, the ARTES accessory list is quite clear. In addition to some cable kits and a spacious transport bag, you will only find a GPS module, which is used for setting the exact time setting, as far as we could figure out.


We come to the topic of support. Here, let's take a brief look, both manufacturers have a very good product support, everyone here needs to make their own experiences. We have always found the right contact at both KoCoS and Omicron.


Let's finally come to the most important question nowadays: What does it cost? It is clear, we can not call numbers here at this point. The prices vary according to equipment, company conditions and occasional special offers and can be requested individually from the manufacturer. For the price advantage that ARTES has to offer against the CMC, you could easily buy a new Volkswagen Golf. This point goes clear to KoCoS.


Even if the traditional boxing rules would require a few more rounds, we end the fight prematurely without KO and the result is fixed:

Winner by point is the CMC 356 from OMICRON.

Omicron vs. KoCoS

There were 3 grueling laps for our two rivals. Despite the superiority of Omicrons CMC356, the KoCoS ARTES 560 has struck well and is not went K.O.

Both devices are two high-performance test systems. One is the "Swiss army knife" the other the low-cost-one. Therefore, we do not want to give a clear purchase recommendation. We have shown the differences and testing possibilities and ultimately everyone has to assess himself which is the right test solution for him.

We would like to thank all readers, especially the numerous feedbacks regarding this contribution series. We especially thank the positive and creative feedback and are really amazed how far our contributions are already entering the world. We have received feedback for the first time from Brazil and from Russia, great ;-)

Back to the 2nd round: "Software and Handling"
Back to the 1st round: "Hardware"

Heartfelt Greetings Hannes Heiden / Alexander Muth

PS: We would like to point out that our research was carried out in the best way and on a neutral basis. We are very grateful for any useful hints on our contributions: