Thread: new member

  1. #1
    I'm a new member. i have a cncest 6080. I plan to used it for routing but eventually i will be wanting to go to cnc milling. In the meantime i have a dilemma. MY 6080 has only a parallel port controller as you know most modern versions of windows don't support parralelle ports for some reason. I have tried cnclinux but someo f the configuration into is missing as the cnc jumps when trying to manually move it. so i would like to either replace the controller with a usb one, or find a way to work it on a parallel port on a modern version windows. Any ideas would be very helpful,
    thank you.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by fjb59 View Post
    cncest 6080.
    I Googled that but nothing useful comes up.
    You know what you have but you have not supplied enough info for anyone who doesn't to be able to help you.
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

  3. #3
    I have this issue as well apparently its pure luck if your pc lpt port works or not with the cnc connection as on previous threads I have found one guy had 4 dell pc's all the same module and spec yet 2 of them worked and the other 2 didn't (apparently down to the different chips used on motherboards)

    only way round is to get a controller to replace the input such as UC100 USB, UC300 and UC400 Ethernet.

    Regards
    Graham

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Palletlad View Post
    one guy had 4 dell pc's all the same module and spec yet 2 of them worked and the other 2 didn't (apparently down to the different chips used on motherboards)
    It's not luck, dell were shite for tricks like that, when I was in IT support Dell were notorious for changing chip sets on boards which were supposed to be direct replacements, often to the point that Windows could not boot, I wouldn't touch them with a long stick ;-)
    Last edited by magicniner; 01-04-2018 at 01:00 AM.
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Palletlad View Post
    I have this issue as well apparently its pure luck if your pc lpt port works or not with the cnc connection as on previous threads I have found one guy had 4 dell pc's all the same module and spec yet 2 of them worked and the other 2 didn't (apparently down to the different chips used on motherboards)

    only way round is to get a controller to replace the input such as UC100 USB, UC300 and UC400 Ethernet.

    Regards
    Graham
    which one would you recomend? i'm assuming the ethernet one removes the need for usb. it would be nice if they did wifi or bluetooth versions.

  6. #6
    I think I read about a WiFi setup but I've not looked into that side yet. My understanding with the the 3 connectors is down to preference.
    Uc100 is a USB connection that is a plug and play set up so no wiring needed.
    The uc400 is ethernet connection and also the uc300 is aswell but offers more O/I options.
    All three are close in pricing so preference is the main factor.
    Last edited by Palletlad; 01-04-2018 at 03:37 PM.

  7. #7
    Neale's Avatar
    Lives in Plymouth, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 9 Hours Ago Has been a member for 5-6 years. Has a total post count of 1,178. Received thanks 215 times, giving thanks to others 5 times.
    It's not just preference - there are some technical differences between the three.

    Parallel port (if you have a pc with one that works) - limited to Windows 32-bit, which means Win7 in practice. Alternatively, LinuxCNC supports it, but again that's only if you have a working parallel port. I used to use a PCI parallel port adapter with LCNC but they can be a lottery as well - some work fine and some don't. In any case, you are limited to 5 inputs as that is all that the PP hardware supports.

    USB and Ethernet will work with most modern PCs running Windows. Can't talk about LCNC as that has a limited amount of external hardware that it works with - which is important as Windows external motion controllers will not work with LCNC and vice versa. Both usb and Ethernet motion controllers are not limited by PC hardware but by their own hardware limits. Generally, though, they support more inputs and outputs than parallel port. However, for simple CNC router use, the parallel port is adequate. You use usb or Ethernet because you are running 64-bit Windows (especially if you are running Win 10), your pc does not have a working parallel port, you need more than the PP supported number of inputs/outputs, you want better/faster performance than PP supports, or some combination of those.

    USB is pretty good, but can have problems due to electrical noise. There is a continuous ground connection between PC and motion controller, and single signal wires. Both of these make it more sensitive to interference/noise. Ethernet connections do not share ground wires (which can be useful in an industrial setting where bits of kit are fed from different mains supplies) and use twisted-pair wiring which is intrinsically more noise-resistant. I don't think that there is any doubt that Ethernet is better, but most hobby users find that usb is perfectly adequate. However, if I were looking at a motion controller with both Ethernet and usb options at similar prices, I would go Ethernet any day.

    If you are looking for a reasonable alternative to a parallel port, I would probably go UC100, USB to pc but you can use it with your existing breakout board. I'm using a CS Labs Ethernet controller myself, but these are an expensive alternative (although there wasn't much choice when I bought it) and I would seriously consider a UC300ETH and UB1 breakout board if I were starting again. But there are plenty of alternatives these days.

    I haven't mentioned LCNC in this context but it's a viable alternative. The external hardware is slightly more fiddly to configure, though, and I'm definitely not an expert in that. However, you can't completely separate choice of external hardware from motion control software - Mach3, LCNC, the UCCNC Mach3 replacement, or whatever. If you are using Mach3 already, though, that's another pointer towards maybe a UC100 as the easy option.

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