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Choosing Encoder Options for Robot Kits

Note: If you are ordering encoder options as part of your robot kit please make sure to also select a motor with an encoder attached. Our standard gear motors do not come with an encoder.

There is a lot to know about using motors with encoders in your robot. This is an abbreviated explanation intended to help you select the correct encoder options for your robot. The encoder options will be different based on the motor controller you select. We offer three types of motor controllers: Sabertooth, PWM, and RoboteQ. If you want to use the encoders for speed control, both RoboteQ and Sabertooth (with the addition of a Kangaroo) have the software already built-in. If you want to use speed control with a PWM you’ll need to use the encoder buffer board and program it yourself. If you want to count pulses the RoboteQ has this functionality built-in. For PWM and Sabertooth motor controllers you’ll need to use the encoder buffer boards to count the pulses.

If you are using encoders, we highly recommend going with a RoboteQ motor controller as there is a lot of built-in functionality in the software. We do, however, offer encoder options for each motor controller. Below are the options that we recommend getting for each type of motor controller:

RoboteQ MDC/XDC
IG32, IG42, and IG52 Gear Motor Encoder Pull-up Board
Encoder Hookup Kit
6-pin Molex Microfit 3.0

RoboteQ SDC
IG32, IG42, and IG52 Gear Motor Encoder Pull-up Board
Encoder Hookup Kit
DB15 Male Solder Cup Connector

Sabertooth (for speed control)
Kangaroo x2 motion controller
IG32, IG42, and IG52 Gear Motor Encoder Pull-up Board
Encoder Hookup Kit
DE Link

Sabertooth (for counting pulses)
Dual LS7366R Quadrature Encoder Buffer
Encoder Hookup Kit
DE Link

PWM (no built-in speed control available)
Dual LS7366R Quadrature Encoder Buffer
Encoder Hookup Kit

Additional Posts and Encoder Support

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