Maestro controller


My Maestro micro controller came today. (joy!) My first step into the world of servo’s and servo control. But so far none of my servo’s have moved.

I’ve tried setting up the USB controller on two pc’s. One is my laptop. (32-bit Windows 7) I installed the drivers. And the controller gets detected. The com ports show up fine in the device manager. But I can’t get my servo’s to move to any position using either the control center or VSA. (I want to use VSA in the future but for now getting them to move is first priority) I’ve tried setting the device to the different modes. But as far as I understand it should be set to USB dual port. Other settings have no effect.

When I use the sliders to position the servo it doesn’t move. Not even when I apply the settings and save the frame. When I run the sequence nothing happens.

The controller it self has a green light that’s blinking fast, even faster when connected to the PC. This indicates that data is being recieved. (Atleast thats what I think it is, reading the manual) There’s also an orange light which blinks every couple of seconds.

Nothing changes when I connect the servo’s to a different port than 1.

What am I doing wrong. Its probably something stupid simple. :wink:

Oh yes, I did check the servo box in order for the control center to use it.



How are you powering your servos?

- Ben

Oh sorry, I forgot to mention that. I’m powering them over USB. At least I thought that was a feature of the Maestro controller. Does it need batteries when connecting via USB? Or do you need to solder 2 pins together as stated in the manual.

The controller can be powered via USB, but the servos themselves cannot; USB is not designed to supply the large currents drawn by motors and servos. You need to use a separate power source for your servos.

- Ben

I see… Thought it would be something silly. I guess I misread something.

Thanks for your quick reply.

Do you know what the typical power draw is of a servo ? I know it has to do with the amount of torque it can supply but can you give me a general figure.

It really depends on the servo model and what your servo is doing. A straining servo will draw a lot more current than one with no load, and a giant servo will draw a lot more current than a sub-micro servo. As a very rough estimate, you might consider the draw of a standard servo to be on the order of an amp when under load or rapidly accelerating.

- Ben

Great! I got it all working! Thanks!

Got a 2.1 amp adapter from some other device I don’t use. My neighbour checked the currents and helped me hook it up, and I’m now controlling 3 servos.

So I’m happy!

I’m glad to hear that everything is working. Just make sure that your adapter is regulated (unregulated adapters can be at a much higher voltage when not under load) and make sure it’s a safe voltage for your servos (typically 4.5 - 6V).

- Ben