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Thread: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

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    Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    I recently started to notice this company called Dongbu Robotics, they sell this Hovis Lite humanoid robot, which almost looks like a Bioloid clone. Anyone own one of these?

    From the few things I've read, it seems like their standard 0101 servos are *slightly* more featured than the AX-12+, but it's a bit scary how close their specs are.

    Is Hovis sourcing their parts from Robotis through contract manufacturing, or is it the other way around? Their humanoid seems a bit sleeker too and I like how they handle the joint area.

    Some concern that came to mind however:

    1) Software support? Will the Hovis' software get support like Robotis' stuff? Robotis seems to be very good at supporting their products outside Korea.

    2) What if you break a gear in the actuator? Robotis has a ton of support and distributions everywhere to get spare parts, more servos. Even though Dongbu's bot looks and seem amazing, I think their distribution needs more maturing.

    I'm almost tempted to get one, but that would mean taking in another bot into the fold, which I have no time for. I think it may be time to sell off one of my bots before I get this one.

    I really would love to wait for their Hovis "heavy" (don't know if that would be the next step for Dongbu), where instead of their 0101 actuator, they use their 0201 actuator. The fact that you get bracket color choices is pretty awesome too, no need to pull out the dye and mess up the kitchen!

    Sorry for the copy and link of a huge image, it's straight off their website, and it's one huge image!

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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    Quote Originally Posted by tom_chang79 View Post
    I recently started to notice this company called Dongbu Robotics, they sell this Hovis Lite humanoid robot, which almost looks like a Bioloid clone. Anyone own one of these?
    There was another thread about possibly buying one for a humanoid fighting robot. They also (are planning to) sell 'upgrades' that include covers that appear to have a rather nice fit and finish, as well as a cover in which to mount a mobile internet device. There is even a three wheeled omni-wheel base and auto charging station. No idea how well any of these actually work or how hard the wallet is hit.

    Quote Originally Posted by tom_chang79 View Post
    From the few things I've read, it seems like their standard 0101 servos are *slightly* more featured than the AX-12+, but it's a bit scary how close their specs are.
    The aforementioned thread does a quick comparison of the HerkuleX servos and dynamixels.

    Quote Originally Posted by tom_chang79 View Post
    Is Hovis sourcing their parts from Robotis through contract manufacturing, or is it the other way around?
    I rather doubt they are in any way associated. Dongbu appears to be a rather large conglomeration of smaller companies in numerous industries. I think Dongbu Robot was once Dasa Robot before an acquisition, but not sure (one link to their ebook support site still uses the dasarobot domain).

    Quote Originally Posted by tom_chang79 View Post
    Their humanoid seems a bit sleeker too and I like how they handle the joint area.
    The servos are a little bit smaller than dynamixels and it appears they added a torso tilt servo as well. I think the sleeker profile is due to some combination of the lack of the polycarbonate chest piece, a 2S LiPo battery mounted directly to the butt instead of hanging off the back, and the torso tilt servo.

    Quote Originally Posted by tom_chang79 View Post
    Some concern that came to mind however:

    1) Software support? Will the Hovis' software get support like Robotis' stuff? Robotis seems to be very good at supporting their products outside Korea.
    I had a bit of trouble just finding the support site in english (unfortunately, I'm a stupid mono-lingual except for a few profanities). I do not have a Windows machine up and running right now so I cannot comment on the actual software they use.

    Quote Originally Posted by tom_chang79 View Post
    2) What if you break a gear in the actuator? Robotis has a ton of support and distributions everywhere to get spare parts, more servos. Even though Dongbu's bot looks and seem amazing, I think their distribution needs more maturing.
    The HerculeX servos were listed briefly on the RobotShop site, but then disappeared and have yet to reappear (as noted in the thread linked within the aforementioned thread - confused yet?). They have several bots listed on the RobotShop site, but all 'special order.' The only place I know of that sells the servos is linked in the thread about the servos disappearing, but I cannot tell if they are actually in stock. No idea when (or even if) they will start competing much with Robotis outside South Korea.

    Quote Originally Posted by tom_chang79 View Post
    I'm almost tempted to get one, but that would mean taking in another bot into the fold, which I have no time for. I think it may be time to sell off one of my bots before I get this one.

    I really would love to wait for their Hovis "heavy" (don't know if that would be the next step for Dongbu), where instead of their 0101 actuator, they use their 0201 actuator. The fact that you get bracket color choices is pretty awesome too, no need to pull out the dye and mess up the kitchen!
    Trossen sells pre-dyed frames for dynamixels. The 'Hovis App' appears to be the closest to a 'heavy' version replacing 8 of the 0101 with 0201 to better support the MID that mounts in the front cover, but I have no idea as to pricing.
    Please pardon the pedantry... and the profanity... and the convoluted speech pattern...
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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    Thank you so much for such a comprehensive response! I think I'm going to wait a bit for the Hovis stuff until their distribution matures a bit like the Robotis stuff.

    I really like the Premium Bioloid kit, however, my opinion is, the Polycarb "body" addon included in the premium kit is FUGLY beyond belief.

    I just couldn't believe it when I first saw the premium kit a couple of years back, how can they have executed the technical aspect so well but the aesthetic so poorly? It feels like the polycarb body was an afterthought and they handed that part of the work to someone who is neither creative nor artistic...

    I've been eyeballing the 1/48th scale gundam, seeing if those pieces would be scale with the Bioloid and/or the Hovis kits.

    I think even if I do go with the Bioloid Premium kit, the polycarb body would be parted out and sold or just boxed up and shelved, never to see the day of light!!!

    Still, with the Hovis' actuators being smaller, it looks very attractive, you know the way it goes, the closer to earth, the less moment and torque you present to these little actuators that are at the ankle and heel...
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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    As per the Hovis...I am excited to see something new, but I am not sure how easily Dongbu is going to bust into a market without making a serious improvement on what is already there. Just making it another option makes it difficult for current users to switch, and not making it significantly cheaper makes it hard to attract new users when so many current users use the other brand.

    I currenty have 3 dynamixel based robots. I have some...not many, but some spare parts. I have a relatively large library of models for autodesk inventor which means I can make my own brackets and parts relatively easily...

    Now a couple ways I could see a company like Dongbu making inroads for itself would be to either hit the middle ground on servos not addressed by dynamixel. Currently there is the AX-12, the AX-18, the RX-24f, the RX-28...well...mxs now but you get the point...

    People really don't seam to like the RX-24fs, (they heat up too quickly) and the RX/mx 28s are $200. the AX-18 have a bit more torque than the AX, but usually not enough to make enough of a difference, say using the AX-18 in the knee joints of a bioloid humanoid. Basically...your spending $44-$100 per servo, or your spending $200. it is a huge jump.

    someone would be well served to come out with a dynamixel compatible servo in an AX-styled frame kit that had the torque of an RX-24f, but not the heat issues.

    The other idea would be for Dongbu to add a firmware thing that you could run to convert servos one way or the other for compatibility...then I could see maybe slipping one or two into my stable.

    They should also release a pile of CAD files so that people can start designing their own brackets without having to do a bunch of measureing an stuff.

    So...either upgrade what is currently out there or come up with some way to slip your product into the current market...

    Well...that is my two cents at least.

    DB

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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    I hear you on that. I think the quickest and easiest way they can break into this market would be to take their default actuator they use on the Hovis, which is very similar to the AX-12+, to have METAL GEAR train. I for one, usually buy the 645MG servos because they have a metal gear train. Not saying that there's a possibility of breaking the gears if they were made of engineering plastic, but the peace of mind is what I paid the extra dough for instead of the "standard" servo line which has similar specs but uses plastic gears.

    Also, would be nice if they offered the different colored brackets as default, part of the package.

    From what I've seen, what you get from the Hovis line seems reasonable in price, but one thing that stood out from that flyer/humangoid jpeg, is that it states "16DOF." Seriously? The bot pictured is beyond 16DOF, if that isn't how it comes in, then it's a bit misleading.

    I know that the Bioloid stuff, the picture on the box and in their ads are the configuration that you can make with the system. If it is 16DOF only, then they should picture it out, they can still keep the cool 20DOF picture, but note that it's not possible with just the kit alone.

    But aside from these little issues, if they do become as accessible as the Robotis stuff, I for one, would love to try their stuff out since their actuators are smaller with the same amount of torque. What really sold me was their demonstration poses/gaits that they have. Seems a lot more sophisticated, although I know that people with Bioloids out there have probably done comparable poses and gaits and perhaps even more sophisticated than the demo one on youtube.
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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    FYI- I've got one of these half-built on one of my shop tables... annnnnd I've got a ton of experience with the Bioloid. I'll give you guys a rundown when I'm done reviewing the kit.

    Initial thoughts:

    Actuators are definitely smaller, more compact. I *REALLY* like their bracket system, it's much more efficient. Also- NO NUTS. Holy hell, no nuts.

    It is 16dof. They use dummy servos much like Kondo does which allows you to upgrade it further up to 20DOF. I'd much prefer this route over being stuck with 16dof, or using a 'hacky' method of expansion like Robobuilder does.
    Andrew Alter
    Trossen Robotics
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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyberius View Post
    FYI- I've got one of these half-built on one of my shop tables... annnnnd I've got a ton of experience with the Bioloid. I'll give you guys a rundown when I'm done reviewing the kit.
    Is it the 0101 or the 0201 version of the servos? I had started a post earlier but I seem to have deleted it as a draft. It was about the 0201 being 53.4% the total volume of the AX-series yet having the same torque at 7.4V as an MX-28 at 12V, while being still slightly faster than the MX-28. Given how quickly an AX-18F can overheat, I really wonder about the reliability. There are metal gear hobby-ish servos with ~20kg-cm torque in a slightly larger package than the 0201, but I have no idea how reliable they are either.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tyberius View Post
    Actuators are definitely smaller, more compact. I *REALLY* like their bracket system, it's much more efficient. Also- NO NUTS. Holy hell, no nuts.
    Molded in place, like the new horns on the AX-12A/18A, or is it some other joining method?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tyberius View Post
    It is 16dof. They use dummy servos much like Kondo does which allows you to upgrade it further up to 20DOF. I'd much prefer this route over being stuck with 16dof, or using a 'hacky' method of expansion like Robobuilder does.
    That's definitely one way to make upgrading easier and cleaner.
    Please pardon the pedantry... and the profanity... and the convoluted speech pattern...
    "You have failed me, Brain!"

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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    Andrew, I can't wait for that review, it would be cool if Trossen decided to carry it, although I hope it doesn't turn out like the Kondo bots, where no support for American user base = Robotis takes over that market.

    I really would love to see these things, I think competition is good. You know what happens to companies that has monopoly (not by force) and gets complacent...

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  10. Question Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    Hi all...and especially Tyberius ,

    Any news on the Hovis and the Dongbu build?

    I am keeping a close eye on eth thread before choosing between Bioloid and Herkulex servos...on paper they seem to have similar-ish specs, although the greater control of the Herkulex servo, their mounting options and their actual size (espcially for the 0201) make them very attractive...

    What are the options for the control beyond the Hovis/Dongbu standard controller?

    Best regards,

    Flyby

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    Re: Hovis vs. Bioloid?

    With over 2 weeks since the last post, I would say no news for now.
    Yours,
    SA

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