Let's Make Robots!

Official Arduino Robot (Review)

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Arduino_Robot_RunPing.zip1.88 KB

This is a review of the new Official Arduino Robot. There is no doubt this robot is priced too high for what you get, yet it does have some interesting features and may be a good buy for colleges and universities as a training tool. Go to the Arduino primary website for all the hardware information you could possibly ask for. Be ready for two HUGE schematics in Eagle format (one for the control board and one for the motor board). Now go to the Robot Library section but remember this. Most of the main demo programs there work without modification, but there is a lot of things that are confusing and some things are just plain wrong. Examples include the need to do a "pinMode(TKD1, OUTPUT);" in "Setup" and then you can do a "Robot.digitalWrite(TKD1, HIGH);" as you would expect. One example forgets to do the "pinMode" command... Other small "ouches" exist like "Servo.h" no longer working and it gives errors when you try to compile with it. (I did get a PING))) sensor to work so driving a servo should not be impossible, just hard like operating the PING))) sensor was. (The robot requires the libraries in Arduino 1.0.5 and that isn't far away from 1.0.4 so I suspect a lot of improvements can be made.) I am using the robot from Windows 7/64 bits and it is working fine. My pc did change the USB address of the control board from 4 to 11 by itself. But hey, it works. What I DO NOT LIKE: Power: 4 AA rechargable cells powering 2 Arduino processors and everything else. Don't expect long battery life... Encoders: There aren't any. There is a small pot to compensate motor speed and there is current feedback, but encoders would be really nice! I DO LIKE the compass and it is working fine for me, keeping the bot in a straight line and showing on the nice color LCD display as I rotate the robot. An accelerometer would have been nice too... Overall: I like the robot and plan on doing a lot with it, but it may or may not be what you want, like any other Arduino board. (Included, find example code for "Runaway Robot" using a PING))) sensor and multiple other mods.)

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hiii

please how you connect the altrasound sensor and the leds with the robot???

please have clear pictuer??

The robots I make perform significantly better than the "Official" Arduino Robot does! My attempts at improving the demo software have not helped it at all... It gets "stuck" continuously, where mine barely ever get stuck! (I thought round robots were supposed to be BETTER at not getting stuck. That turns out to be more myth that truth!) It has a poor battery life, (4 AA cells for 2 CPU's) for very short run times. I use 6 cells for a single processor and get long run times. The compass works "OK" indoors as long as you stay away from metal structures. The compass might work better outdoors, but the wheels can't handle the dirt or the grass. (I am not sure they would work well on a thick "shag" carpet!) The thing it did get right, was to make me more pleased with the bots I build. Advice: Consider waiting for the next version. Think STRONGLY before buying this one.

I would say this expensive but the quality like they have told in the arduino leaflet is unmatched by any other!!

Well you get 2 Leonardo's. But it does lack some features to be a complete package. An accelerometer is dirt cheap these days. They should have fitted some headers for ultrasonic sensors and definately encoders.  Then the price would be acceptable.

Oddbot, I couldn't agree more.

Question (to Oddbot, and anyone else): What would you price this bot at if you were Arduino  (not influenced by "COMPLUBOT") and really wanted to price it to sell towards a broader market???

1/2 the price?

Less?

Say you DID add wheel encoders (and I would also suggest accelerometers) what would be the price be then?

(And PLEASE design in at least 6 AA cells!!! :-)

BTW: I stopped using the compass and wrote in my own "turn" routines. Now it behaves better indoors.

And 275$ for a Leonardo with GM is way too much!

Over priced and not thought out very well. Seems to be the common opinion.