I am using Galil controller cards. I do not have experience with other cards.
I was wondering if any of you guys could do a comaparison between some of the different brands out there i.e. capabilities, costs, ease of use, programing interfaces etc.?
As regards the Cards themselves, The three I am familiar with is Galil, Acroloop and Delta-Tau.
I would consider there is not agreat deal to choose between them as far as Technical spec.s and cost.
Although there are some features of the Acroloop that I prefer over the others, one being the built in PLC's, built in isolated I/O etc and a couple of other usefull features & commands that are not present in the other two.
Since Acroloop was bought out by Parker Motion, the support has not been as good.
The original factory group developed an excellent DOS & NT package for Plasma, Mill and General CNC interface (No dongle or Key), All page-able screens and G codes were already written in, and M codes and PLC written by the user.
I have done several retro-fits with this and have two Excello mills that run the s/w.
Acroloop/Parker now have a Windows based system called MotionMax and a demo can be downloaded.
I have only tried the Demo version and it compares favourably with the original systems, but no Lathe package, The site has all the original manuals and legacy development tool.
I am not sure whether the DOS & NT versions are still available. There is no licence key etc.
For Galil, you cannot fault the support and they also have an excellent range of product.
The only Galil supplied control package that I am aware of was an ISA package called Opint which now has been dropped, unfortunately.
This was a very powerful package that allowed the drawing of screens in minutes and ran the code in Native commands in the back ground, I built many simple controls like point to point CNC and back gauges and simple CNC control etc, again this development was dropped due to the disappearance of ISA bus. No s/w license, but firmware key cost $200.00 per card.
Presently there is not much to chose from for 3rd party s/w apart from Camsoft, unless you chose to write your own, using the Visual Basic tools.
Delta-Tau: I helped one person develop the system using the Delta-Tau CNC software and it develops a very powerful CNC package, but I did not find it as user friendly as the MotionMax appears to be , maybe I did not spend as much time as I should have to learn the architecture and maybe being more accustomed to the Acroloop . Support was good, but varied a little.
If I would buy a full system card and s/w today, I would personally tend to go with the Acroloop MotionMax, again the draw back is it has no Lathe package.
Having come through the DOS era of controls, I still prefer this as a platform for CNC control, The early Galil & Acroloop systems shows that this is all that is necessary and you do not require Windows to operate an effective machine display and control.
CNC, Mechatronics Integration and Custom Machine Design (Skype Avail).
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