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What type of controller do I need for servos?


CJL
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I believe the only current product that will run servos is the CTB08D, which will run two servos in addition to the 8 dimming triac channels. See page 12 of this manual:

http://www.lightorama.com/Documents/CTB08D_UserGuide.pdf

There are rumors of a future I/O 32 card in the works. As I remember, it is expected to have four banks of 8 channels. Each bank can be configured as digital in, digital out, servo control, or triac drive. At a guess, it might be announced at the time of the summer sale, but it might also turn into a product for next year..

- Kevin

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Dan said before that he was developing a mother board with daughter cards, one of which is supposed to be a card to control solenoids. I am hoping it will be one of the new releases in June as it would be quite useful for animatronic control.

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That might work pretty well. Can that run using the regular sequence and scheduler editor software?



-klb- wrote:

I believe the only current product that will run servos is the CTB08D, which will run two servos in addition to the 8 dimming triac channels. See page 12 of this manual:

http://www.lightorama.com/Documents/CTB08D_UserGuide.pdf

There are rumors of a future I/O 32 card in the works. As I remember, it is expected to have four banks of 8 channels. Each bank can be configured as digital in, digital out, servo control, or triac drive. At a guess, it might be announced at the time of the summer sale, but it might also turn into a product for next year..

- Kevin
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As I understand it on the CTB08D, the two servo outputs are controlled as channels 9 and 10, with 0% intensity being all the way to one end, and 100% intensity being all the way to the other end of travel. I expect that the I/O 32 card will be similar. I can't guess if it will be fully addressable before the protocol/firmware upgrade, or if only 16 channels will be usable until the protocol upgrade.

- Kevin

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That document doesn't seem to mention if the regular scheduler software can run sequences - It looks like a input can be wired to start a sequence though. I might need to run it on a schedule.

I want to have about 15 different shows, and it would be great to be able to start them with a push button. Is there a way to make the controller run a different show every time the button is pressed?



-klb- wrote:

As I understand it on the CTB08D, the two servo outputs are controlled as channels 9 and 10, with 0% intensity being all the way to one end, and 100% intensity being all the way to the other end of travel. I expect that the I/O 32 card will be similar. I can't guess if it will be fully addressable before the protocol/firmware upgrade, or if only 16 channels will be usable until the protocol upgrade.

- Kevin
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I think I missed part of the question, and may still be missing part of the question. The part that I can answer with confidence is that if you leave any interaction out of it, a PC or MP-3 director schedule and sequences will control servos just fine, just like any light sequence.

If you are looking to use stored sequences in the controller itself, I don't believe the existing controllers can hold more than one sequence. The MP3 directors can, and I think they can trigger different sequences on different button presses, though I can't remember how many inputs each of the director versions has.

As for interactive abilities with the I/O 32, I don't think any information has been released at this time about how those features will work.

- Kevin

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Can the controller only use the trigger input when running in standalone mode (without a computer)?




-klb- wrote:

I think I missed part of the question, and may still be missing part of the question. The part that I can answer with confidence is that if you leave any interaction out of it, a PC or MP-3 director schedule and sequences will control servos just fine, just like any light sequence.

If you are looking to use stored sequences in the controller itself, I don't believe the existing controllers can hold more than one sequence. The MP3 directors can, and I think they can trigger different sequences on different button presses, though I can't remember how many inputs each of the director versions has.

As for interactive abilities with the I/O 32, I don't think any information has been released at this time about how those features will work.

- Kevin
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One other question:



Do you know what type on connector is used on the CTB08D board pins (the ones for the servos)?

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Using just the CTB08D standalone, you have one trigger input, and one sequence. If configured appropriately, a momentary contact of the trigger will cause the stored sequence to run all the way through. If the contact is still closed at the end of the sequence, it will immediately start over again.

As for the connectors, you will need to get some suitable connectors for your servos, and connectors for 0.10" pin header for the CTB08D, as well as a suitable DC power supply for the servos. Servo extension cables would be one source of connectors for the servos, and connectors for the pin header should be fairly easy to find. I think www.sparkfun.com has them, and they don't have the insane range of other connector types to sort through like the typical electronics shops. Page 12 of the CTB08D manual does a pretty good job of illustrating how to connect the servo motors and the required power supply, and some of the earlier pages speak to stored sequences and triggering them. (Note that the trigger will be on the same connector as the servo connections)

http://www.lightorama.com/Documents/CTB08D_UserGuide.pdf

- Kevin

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Thanks for all your help. Would I just use the metal female part of the connector and not the plasic housing?



-klb- wrote:

Using just the CTB08D standalone, you have one trigger input, and one sequence. If configured appropriately, a momentary contact of the trigger will cause the stored sequence to run all the way through. If the contact is still closed at the end of the sequence, it will immediately start over again.

As for the connectors, you will need to get some suitable connectors for your servos, and connectors for 0.10" pin header for the CTB08D, as well as a suitable DC power supply for the servos. Servo extension cables would be one source of connectors for the servos, and connectors for the pin header should be fairly easy to find. I think http://www.sparkfun.com has them, and they don't have the insane range of other connector types to sort through like the typical electronics shops. Page 12 of the CTB08D manual does a pretty good job of illustrating how to connect the servo motors and the required power supply, and some of the earlier pages speak to stored sequences and triggering them. (Note that the trigger will be on the same connector as the servo connections)

http://www.lightorama.com/Documents/CTB08D_UserGuide.pdf

- Kevin
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On the 0.10" headers, with the parts I mentioned at sparkfun? I would strongly recommend using the connector shells. The connectors are fairly long, and have some ability to tolerate alignment errors, so they would be likely to short out without the shell. I do note that the CTB08D has a 7 pin non polarized header, and the largest shell that SparkFun has is 6 pin, but you won't be using the 7th pin anyway.

This looks to be the female connector shells,

http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8099

and this looks to be 20 of the female pins...

http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8100#

- Kevin

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Perfect. I'm going to be using the LOR800W (which uses the same board.) I guess all I'll need in that connector from Sparksfun and I'll be all set. Thanks a lot. You've been really helpful.

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  • 1 month later...
DanglinModifiers

Just ordered my CTB-08D from the sale. Thanks for the info on Sparksfun, I had no idea where to get the connectors!

-Steve

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  • 5 months later...

Is it confirmed that the CTB-16D's don't control servos?

I have several of these, and would love to control servos for an animation project I'm in the process of cooking up...

Otherwise I guess a dedicated servo board would be in order... But I'd love it if my current hardware could do more work for me...

-Tim

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