Note: We have released the second-generation Maestro USB servo controllers, which are better than this product in almost every way. This product is now only available by large-volume special order. Please contact us for more information.

Overview

The Pololu USB 16-servo controller is the most full-featured member of our first-generation line of R/C hobby servo controllers. The compact module measures just 1.9"x1.0" including the USB connector, making it smaller than most 8-channel controllers, and it offers both USB and asynchronous serial (UART) connectivity. No features are compromised for the small size, as our USB controller supports independent speed and range settings for each servo while delivering 0.5-microsecond resolution for smooth output across its broad output pulse range of 250 through 2750 microseconds.

When installed, the USB servo controller appears as a serial port to the host computer. Programming is therefore as easy as sending commands to a serial port, and as an added benefit, the servo controller is compatible with many existing programs. The servo controller can be connected to additional serial devices, such as our serial motor controllers, and thereby function as both a servo controller and a USB-to-UART bridge. The servo controller is compatible with USB 2.0 standards, and drivers are available for Windows XP and Vista, Mac, and Linux.

With its dual USB and UART interface, the servo controller can at first be used with a PC to quickly develop motion sequences with the advantage of graphical interfaces and quick program changes. For projects without dedicated PCs, such as small autonomous robots, the final motion sequences can then be transferred to an embedded controller, which can communicate with the servo controller over the standard asynchronous serial connection.

With serial ports being a rarity on new computers, the Pololu USB 16-Servo Controller provides one of the most simple, small, and economical alternatives to standard serial servo controllers.

Feature summary

  • Control 16 R/C hobby servos
  • Dual USB and UART interface
  • Independent speed and range for each servo
  • 0.5-microsecond resolution
  • 50 Hz update rate
  • Upgradable firmware
  • Small size of 1.9"x1.0"

Note: The blue 1×2 terminal block shown in the product picture is optional; it is included but not soldered in. Many battery packs used with servos can be plugged directly into the servo ports, and customers with high-current applications (e.g. many servos straining at once) might want to solder wires directly to the spot where the terminal block would fit. A USB A to mini-B cable (not included) is required to connect this device to a computer.

Note: This product no longer ships with a printed user’s manual. The user’s manual can be downloaded as a pdf from the resources tab of this product page.


Resources

Documentation and other information

CP2102 USB-to-Serial Bridge Driver Installation (Printable PDF)

CP2102 Drivers and installation instructions for Windows, Mac, and Linux. The CP2102 is used on the Pololu USB-to-Serial Adapter, the Orangutan USB Programmer, the USB 16-Servo Controller, and the Orangutan X2.

Pololu Serial Transmitter utility for Windows (Printable PDF)

A simple serial transmitter utility for Windows that lets you transmit sequences of bytes at a selectable baud rate to a selectable COM port. This program can be conveniently used to send commands to our serially controllable devices.


File downloads

USB 16-servo controller user’s guide (344k pdf)

(PL-390)

SKU PL-390
Brand Pololu

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