I was wondering that we are not only limited to the digital IO available in the cabinet as we can also use the USB ports in the controller via the python programs. Any thoughts on pro and cons of either approach?
I am planning to build a little cabinet with:
SainSmart 16-Channel 9-36V USB Relay Module https://a.co/d/1dFETmI
Baomain Integrated 10 Space Manifold with Solenoid Valve 4V210-08 DC 24V PT1/4 2 Position 5 Way Base Muffler Quick Fittings Set https://a.co/d/4T1pax4
That would be a really clean setup with only one USB cable connecting to the cabinet (and power obv) and the PU tubing coming out. Thoughts?
For this kind of use, it probably makes no difference. The I/O board is already there, but you have to buy the USB module. That’s one minus.
Otherwise, you can control (have access to the USB bus) from the TRPL Interpreter, so that should work without problems.
The only bigger difference is that the I/O module is sitting on the EtherCAT bus and is evaluated directly in the real-time HAL loop. As an advanced feature, you could, in theory, insert your own module into the real-time execution and execute action on the change (this is how the safety input works). And you cannot do that with the USB module controlled by the Python program Interpreter.
USB will work, but the digital IO is more reliable and already built in, no work required. We do sell pneumatic solenoid kits that are plug-and-play: 39433 - ZA6 Robot Solenoid Valve Kit
If you need a 5-way we’ve got a kit with a 5-way on it as well, but it’s not up on our website separately (it’s part of the multigrip system). The part number is 50151, you could purchase one through the ‘request a quote’ feature on the website.