Mini Maestro and Shiftbrite - Just pulsing

I’ve hooked everything up and feel like everything should be working given the current setup. I am using a 6v, 300 mA plug from Radio Shack to power the shiftbrites. The controller is relying on usb power. They just pulse. I run the example code from the manual and this is all they do. There is clearly a difference between when they are just sitting and when I execute the script. So it seems that there is some effect and some signal is being sent. Not sure why they are just sitting like this though.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovb985_qysM

There is a video of what is occuring. I can send plenty of other info if needed. Everything is wired according to the example script in the user guide for the maestro. Channel 0,1,2 - clock, latch, data all on the “I” side of the shift brite.

Any thoughts?

Thanks in advance.

-Steve Nuzum

I have three photos of the setup here a well.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevenuzum/6376842041/in/photostream/

Hello,

It is very likely that you are doing something wrong, though I cannot figure it out from your description, so can you post a picture clear showing all of your connections, or write a precise description of them, and also post your Maestro configuration file?

I am guessing that you either did not connect all of your grounds or that you have not configured those pins to be outputs.

-Paul

Oh, also, for now, please simplify the system as much as possible by removing all but one ShiftBrite.

-Paul

I will get the photos up ASAP. Where will I find the configuration file?

Alright, saw were the save configuation file was. So here is that.

<!--Pololu Maestro servo controller settings file, https://www.pololu.com/catalog/product/1350-->
<UscSettings version="1">
  <NeverSuspend>false</NeverSuspend>
  <SerialMode>USB_DUAL_PORT</SerialMode>
  <FixedBaudRate>9600</FixedBaudRate>
  <SerialTimeout>0</SerialTimeout>
  <EnableCrc>false</EnableCrc>
  <SerialDeviceNumber>12</SerialDeviceNumber>
  <SerialMiniSscOffset>0</SerialMiniSscOffset>
  <Channels MiniMaestroServoPeriod="188000" ServoMultiplier="1">
    <!--Period = 47 ms-->
    <!--Channel 0-->
    <Channel name="clock" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 1-->
    <Channel name="latch" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 2-->
    <Channel name="data" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 3-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 4-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 5-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 6-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 7-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 8-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 9-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 10-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
    <!--Channel 11-->
    <Channel name="" mode="Output" min="3968" max="8000" homemode="Off" home="3968" speed="0" acceleration="0" neutral="6000" range="1905" />
  </Channels>
  <Sequences />
  <Script ScriptDone="true">begin
1023 0 0 rgb latch
0 1023 0 rgb latch
0 0 1023 rgb latch
repeat

# shifts out a single bit
sub send_bit
if 8000 else 0 endif
2 servo # set DATA to 0 or 1
0 0 8000 0 servo servo # toggle CLOCK
return

# sends a numerical value as a sequence of 10 bits
sub send_10_bit_value
512
begin
dup
while
over over bitwise_and send_bit
1 shift_right
repeat
drop drop
return

sub latch
0 1 8000 1 servo servo # toggle the latch pin
return

# Subroutine for shifting out an RGB value for ShiftBrite/ShiftBar.
# example usage: 1023 511 255 rgb
sub rgb
0 send_bit # this bit does not matter
0 send_bit # the "address" bit - 0 means a color command
swap rot rot
send_10_bit_value
send_10_bit_value
send_10_bit_value
# do NOT toggle the latch pin here, wait until all bits have been sent
return
</Script>
</UscSettings>

Also posting two youtube videos that talk through my setup and configuration.

I will link to those as soon as they are done uploading.

Here are the two videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5tOhOTgQIw

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z8rqJt7GtEQ

Hello,

It appears that you are not using the example code in the User’s Guide after all. Where did you get that script? How about you try cutting and pasting the example we provide?

(One obvious problem with yours is that there is no delay between the different color commands, but there could easily be other problems.)

-Paul

Sorry about that. I had been trying several scripts that I had found else where since I was having issues from the start. No matter which script, the example from the guide or not it is the same results. I tried somethings from this forum post, https://forum.pololu.com/t/mini-maestro-and-shift-brite/1873/1&hilit=shiftbrite, but no results either. I tried just one color line to try and get it to produce one color, nada.

I can put in the original script and give it a try, but like I said it had given the same results originally.

In this video from the site,http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZTt5b25KMQ , the shiftbrite is off to start, but the maestro has power as you can see the light flashing on the board. Should my shiftbrite be lit up with just the power running to it? As soon as I plug in the transformer for the shiftbrite power, it comes on in that bright white/multicolored glow?

Hello,

Thanks for posting those videos - they show everything very clearly. It looks like your grounds are indeed not connected. All grounds should be connected together! Without that the ShiftBrite lacks a good reference voltage, and it will not be able to accurately interpret your signals. This is required for most circuits unless you are doing something very special.

-Paul

Hi Paul, thank you for taking the time to help me out. Which grounds do I need to connect together? On the barrel plug or on the maestro, I’m a bit of a wiring beginner.

Should I wire it like in the sample youtube video(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZTt5b25KMQ) that Pololu has out there where the Maestro and Shiftbrite have both a power and ground from the same source?

You can wire it so that they have power from the same source, and that is desirable if you want to allow it to run without being plugged into a computer, but right now I am just talking about the grounds. You need to have the ground (black wire) of your power supply connected to the ground on the Maestro as well as to the ground on the ShiftBrite chain. Right now it looks like the connection to the Maestro is missing, so the Maestro’s voltage levels are not necessarily related to the ShiftBrite’s voltage levels.

One wire from your power jack to the Maestro’s ground line should do it.

-Paul

Awesome Paul. Thank you.

Here is a clear picture of the wiring from that video:

Some of the connections are hard to see, but I can tell you that all of the black (ground) wires are connected together, as are all of the red (power) ones.

-Paul