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View Full Version : What to buy next Bioloid or Robonova.



Droid Works
11-16-2007, 10:27 AM
What to buy next Bioloid or Robonova? which one is the funner bot?

cdraptor
11-16-2007, 07:37 PM
I would say the Bioloid provides you the widest options for experimentation not to mention it has more sophisticated servos. Crustcrawler has released a robotic arm using the AX-12+s and they're planning on coming out with their Nomad HDATS Hexapod to support AX-12+s. I enjoyed messing with different configurations with the Bioloid and I am excited to be able to reuse the AX-12 servos in some new products

Alex
11-20-2007, 01:17 PM
I'd definitely say the Bioloid. The Robonova is a great robot, with a lot of out of the box features, along with analog inputs and a some well written software. The Bioloid system on the other hand uses a serial network with far more advanced actuators, and, imo, has much more long term potential. The only downfall is that it doesn't have as many out of the box features aside from the ability to change the robot's configuration into practically anything your imagination can come up with.

Jon Hylands has some really cool products coming out for the Bioloid kit though:

http://www.huvrobotics.com/shop/

I think I remember Jon telling me that the following board can be used with any standard 5V 3pin analog sensor:

http://www.huvrobotics.com/shop/index.php?_a=viewProd&productId=4

He's also working on an analog input board:

http://www.huv.com/blog/2007/07/catching-up.html


Post #8 on the following thread talks about it a little more:
http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/showthread.php?t=1069&highlight=bioloid+analog

Hope that helps:)

JonHylands
11-20-2007, 01:53 PM
Jon Hylands has some really cool products coming out for the Bioloid kit though:

http://www.huvrobotics.com/shop/

I think I remember Jon telling me that the following board can be used with any standard 5V 3pin analog sensor:

http://www.huvrobotics.com/shop/index.php?_a=viewProd&productId=4


Thanks for mentioning this, Alex... You can use any standard 3-pin analog sensor with the board I haven't released yet. Those boards mentioned above work with any of the 2-pin resistive sensors.

If you're into programming, the Bioloid is definitely the way to go. With a USB interface, you can communicate full speed with the bus from any PC/Mac or a gumstix verdex (or just about any other Linux machine that supports USB host).

- Jon

cdraptor
11-20-2007, 06:10 PM
How about some sweet source code examples of how to communicate with the AX-12+s - is the format out there somewhere. Jon I haven't had any time to mess with the board I ordered from you with all the projects I am doing, both my real job and extra work with the SPC-101C.

JonHylands
11-20-2007, 06:35 PM
I have code, but it is written in Smalltalk, and so isn't likely to be all that useful to most people.

Basically, everything you need is documented in the AX-12 manual. You have to be careful that when you send a command, if there is a response expected, you must wait for and receive the response before you send any other commands over the bus.

- Jon

Alex
11-21-2007, 09:56 AM
Here's a link to the AX-12 manual:

http://www.trossenrobotics.com/images/productdownloads/AX-12_Manual(English).pdf (http://www.trossenrobotics.com/images/productdownloads/AX-12_Manual%28English%29.pdf)

srobot
11-22-2007, 10:07 AM
What you need is a AX-28+ (or any other Robotis servo), plugged into a USB board from Jon, then that board plugged into your computer, PDA, GumStix, or what ever your using. From your computer, PDA, or what ever, use the following code.

To make "servo 1" goto "position 5" use the following code:



SerialPort1.Write("0xFF 0xFF 0x01 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x00 0x00 0xD8")


To make "servo 3" goto "position 9" use the following code:



SerialPort1.Write("0xFF 0xFF 0x03 0x09 0x03 0x1E 0x00 0x00 0xD8")


This code may not work with your computer, if it does not work try using commands like



USB1.Send =




Com1.Write


Cheers,
--Scotty

Jon helped me with the code. (Thanks) : )

JonHylands
11-22-2007, 01:56 PM
To make "servo 3" goto "position 9" use the following code:



SerialPort1.Write("0xFF 0xFF 0x03 0x09 0x03 0x1E 0x00 0x00 0xD8")



Well, I helped you with the first one, but this one isn't right.

An AX-12 command looks like this:

0xFF - header byte 1
0xFF - header byte 2
0x01 - ID of the servo
0x05 - command (5 means WRITE_DATA)
0x03 - number of bytes in parameter of this message (in this case, 3)
0x1E - address in the control table for the first byte
0x00 - first byte being written
0x00 - second byte being written
0xD8 - checksum

The checksum is calculated by summing all the bytes except the header bytes, anding the result with 0xFF, and then doing a logical not of the result.

~(0x01 + 0x05 + 0x03 + 0x1E + 0x00 + 0x00 + 0xD8) = ~0x27 = 0xD8

So, to set servo 3 to position 9, you would send:

0xFF 0xFF 0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x09 0x00 0xCF

- Jon

cdraptor
11-22-2007, 04:25 PM
Hey thanks for the info srobot and Jon. I've been checking out the manual for info on the AX-12+ communication doesn't seem that difficult and I've a C# application setup, I have the FTDI drivers loaded on Vista and was messing around a bit earlier trying to send some serial commands to HUV robotics USB board. I see in device manager that the USB sets up a COM6 and Vista tells me the device is present when I plug it in, but I'm having trouble actually making the COM6 connection - I am using the .NET 3.0 libraries which has the serial port object, I have it set at 8 bit, Parity None, 1 stop bit no luck. I haven't dug into it too much since I only had a bit of time this morning to try it out.

I'll post later when I get a chance tomorrow to test it out more. I'm away so I only have the Vista Laptop to try this on right now.

Alex
11-22-2007, 08:17 PM
What do you have the baud rate set to? I'm at home and don't have anything in front of me right now, but I seem to remember that the baud setting was very important when I was trying to build a C# wrapper to the bioloid serial system. When you open up a serial port object in C#, don't you have to set the baud too? Then again, I was using .NET 2.0, and I know quite a bit has changed overall between 2.0 and 3.0. How do you like 3.0 so far?

One other thing. Are you using the ID on the back of the actuator itself? If there isn't an ID on there I think that the default ID is either 1 or 0, but I can't seem to find it on the datasheet. The turkey is probably affecting my brain a bit:D

JonHylands
11-22-2007, 10:22 PM
The baud rate for every new AX-12 I've tried has been 1,000,000 baud. I have a couple RX-64's, and the baud rate for it was set up at 57,600.

It sounds to me like you're having trouble with the serial port rather than problems with talking to the servos...

- Jon

srobot
11-23-2007, 03:36 PM
So, to set servo 3 to position 9, you would send:

0xFF 0xFF 0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x09 0x00 0xCF

I think you mean CD at the end:


0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x09 0x00 0xCD

Not CF:


0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x09 0x00 0xCF

Correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks,
--Scotty

JonHylands
11-23-2007, 04:07 PM
I think you mean CD at the end:


0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x09 0x00 0xCDNot CF:


0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x09 0x00 0xCFCorrect me if I'm wrong.

Thanks,
--Scotty

You are correct... I must have transcribed something wrong...

The correct sequence is:

0xFF 0xFF 0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x09 0x00 0xCD

- Jon

srobot
11-23-2007, 05:01 PM
So servo 3 to position 3 would be:



0xFF 0xFF 0x03 0x05 0x03 0x1E 0x03 0x00 0xD3


____________________


0x00 - first byte being written I take it that this is the position?

--Scotty

JonHylands
11-24-2007, 06:30 AM
If you look at the AX-12 manual, you'll see there is a control table interface for the servo. Location 30 and 31 in the control table is the position you want the servo to move to - its a 16 bit slot, with a value between 0 and 1023. All the 16 bit slots in the control table take two bytes, and are oriented low byte first.


- Jon

JonHylands
01-15-2008, 02:41 PM
Each servo on a Bioloid bus has a unique ID. Each message sent out includes the ID of the recipient, and all the other servos just ignore that message.

Unfortunately, I don't have anything in C or C++ or C# that shows how to control one or more servos. I suppose at some point I'm going to have to build an application that does that...

- Jon

tom_chang79
02-07-2008, 02:25 PM
A question along the same line as this thread, how does the quality of the brackets, servos, and electronics compare against Kondo's KHR-1HV/2HV?

Which do you guys recommend? I'm ultimately going to be using the bioloid as a humanoid bot, so was wondering how it compares. The bioloid seems like a better value since you get stronger servos, and the price is lower as compared to the Kondo's kits. But the difference of price at these ranges aren't much, so I'm more concerned about the quality/strength of the brackets as well as the servos. Can the humanoid take some falls before the brackets snap?

DresnerRobotics
02-07-2008, 02:38 PM
I have heard from every owner that the Bioloid brackets are quite robust. I cannot wait until I can budget in a Bioloid kit, one of the things I'm really looking forward to hopefully later on this year. IMO, the Bioloid kit is by far the best value, as its modular and can be expanded, rebuilt as new bots, interfaced with USB bus, etc.

Alex
02-07-2008, 03:37 PM
I agree. The Bioloid kit is a great system. I highly recommend it:) Those servos are just out of this world cool! Such a hackable system too! Be sure to keep us posted with everything you do with it!

To answer your question though, I think the Bioloid frames are a little stronger, but I'm no mechanical engineer. I'm just going on the fact that each servo bracket on the Kondos are three separate pieces in comparison to the Bioloid which is one.

EDIT: btw, we had the Bioloid Humanoid at iHobby last year on solid concrete. It fell quite a few times and never once had a bracket break.

srobot
02-07-2008, 04:02 PM
EDIT: btw, we had the Bioloid Humanoid at iHobby last year on solid concrete. It fell quite a few times and never once had a bracket break.

I have a few videos of that too.

Yes, the Bioloid is very solid.

Dave
02-08-2008, 12:43 PM
we had the Bioloid Humanoid at iHobby last year on solid concrete. It fell quite a few times and never once had a bracket break.

Yeah, the default walking sequence kind of sucks, so it would take a dive about every 30 seconds. Some screws started to loosen up after a while, but that was it. Otherwise, it was unharmed.

JonHylands
02-09-2008, 05:59 AM
With Vista, you need to make sure you "Run as Administrator" your application, so it has access to the COM ports.

- Jon

tom_chang79
02-10-2008, 04:37 AM
A few questions regarding the bioloid:

1) Is it possible to replace the bushing that comes with the kit for use on the joints with bearings?

2) Are the AX-12 servos metal or plastic gears? Does it also have bearings inside the servos or does it use bushings inside?

JonHylands
02-10-2008, 05:56 AM
Its probably possible to switch to bearings, but as far as I know nobody sells such a kit, so you would have to make it yourself.

The AX-12 has plastic gears. They are very strong - I've stressed my servos pretty badly, and they don't break.

The AX-12 has a nice "smart-servo" feature - if they get overstressed (torque, temperature), they shut down and freewheel. This means it is much harder to burn out an AX-12 (unlike a lot of other servos), and things like plastic gears are a lot less likely to strip.

- Jon

tom_chang79
02-10-2008, 05:17 PM
Thanks for the reply Jon. One more question, if I buy the comprehensive kit, I want to buy an extra AX-12 servo for the hip rotation function. But the kit comes with AX-12+s and the servo that is sold separately is a AX-12. What is the difference between the AX-12+ and AX-12?

Alex
02-10-2008, 05:40 PM
They're the same servo. edit: See below, my mistake:o

DresnerRobotics
02-10-2008, 06:48 PM
Thanks for the reply Jon. One more question, if I buy the comprehensive kit, I want to buy an extra AX-12 servo for the hip rotation function. But the kit comes with AX-12+s and the servo that is sold separately is a AX-12. What is the difference between the AX-12+ and AX-12?

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Comprehensive Kit comes with 18 AX-12+s, and the stock humanoid has hip rotation as is. Don't think you need anything additional for that.

Also, there is actually a difference between the AX-12s and the AX-12+, although not by much. The original Bioloid kit came with 19 AX-12s, and the "hip rotation" it had is more accurately described as waist bending. The 2nd, current revision of the kit got rid of that extra DOF in the waist and ships with 18 AX-12+, which are supposed to be slightly better then the original AX-12 (not sure on exact differences, this is just what I've read from the robosavvy boards) Heres the link: http://robosavvy.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1634

Alex
02-10-2008, 08:28 PM
the stock humanoid does have hip rotation. Or are you referring to torso rotation? You mention only buying one ax-12, so I'm guessing so...


Also, there is actually a difference between the AX-12s and the AX-12+, although not by much.Huh, I'll be damned! Thanks for the correction Andrew. I don't remember ever seeing "AX-12" on any of the servos we carried since we've been selling the Bioloid. But I went into the documentation sheets for the kits and sure enough, they reference AX-12 actuators in some spots. I wonder what the differences were...

tom_chang79
02-10-2008, 08:41 PM
Thanks for the reply guys. I made a mistake and called waist rotation hip rotation... :tongue:

Yeah, what I meant was waist rotation. I looked at the comprehensive instruction manual and for the humanoid, you do need all 18 servos, so for the waist rotation, you would need an additional servo.

Is the AX-12 sold separately a "+" version (Item #: FRS-B-AX-12)? The picture says it's 12+ but the item description doesn't mention the "+."

srobot
02-11-2008, 09:18 AM
Thanks for the reply guys. I made a mistake and called waist rotation hip rotation... :tongue:

Yeah, what I meant was waist rotation. I looked at the comprehensive instruction manual and for the humanoid, you do need all 18 servos, so for the waist rotation, you would need an additional servo.

Is the AX-12 sold separately a "+" version (Item #: FRS-B-AX-12)? The picture says it's 12+ but the item description doesn't mention the "+."

I think I did the same thing you're talking about.

If you buy an extra servo it will be an AX-12+.

Bioloid with waist. (http://ribolabs.wordpress.com/2008/01/08/time-to-build-a-bioloid/)

Cheers,
--Scotty

tom_chang79
02-11-2008, 09:53 AM
Thanks for all the replies guys! I just placed an order for a Comprehensive kit and an extra AX-12+ servo. I hope it arrives soon...

:D

DresnerRobotics
02-11-2008, 10:28 AM
Thanks for all the replies guys! I just placed an order for a Comprehensive kit and an extra AX-12+ servo. I hope it arrives soon...

:D


/jealous

I have a big tax return coming (thank you new baby!) and am trying to devise the best way of convincing my wife a Bioloid kit is money well spent :D

Alex
02-11-2008, 11:08 AM
I have a big tax return coming (thank you new baby!) and am trying to devise the best way of convincing my wife a Bioloid kit is money well spent

good luck;)

kbv2842
03-05-2008, 05:49 PM
If anyone looking for how to synchronously move all servos using C#, then you can get this project at http://forum.crustcrawler.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=1061&p=2313#p2313

i created this project using Jon Hyland's board(nice piece) and using CrustCrawlers fantastic USB_Dynamixel API created by Mike Gebhard. All credit goes to them.

There is a dll there that can be used to make a Bioloid object (however, I have wrongly named it Bioloid Arm as it pertained to my application). A new bioloid object needs to be created without having to worry about comport stuff. It's all handled in the code. Maybe you might need to put the correct comport number in the default constructor. To move your own set of servos, you may need to just put in the dynamixel id's that you are using. You can move individual dynamixels at a given speed, position or both and do the same with multiple dynamixels. That is all it can do!

I know this might be pretty simple, but newbies like me...there you go...!

Thanks!:happy: