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Duet enhancement ideas

Posted by JustSumGuy 
Duet enhancement ideas
November 15, 2017 01:38PM
I have a few ideas for enhancement of the Duet setup, for all I know some are already under way or implemented.
I have not received my duet wifi yet but looking around and thinking about it these are a few ideas I thought would be nice to be able to do.

1) Add a PTZ control to the camera setup. I think this might be just software as the board should have the ability to control a few servos.

2) Add a few USB ports. For web cameras rather than being limited to only IP cam setups.

3) On the USB ports add the ability to be a print server for lesser 8 bit controllers on secondary printers. Much like OctoPi and Astro Print do the job but bring it all under one web interface.

4) select-able camera interface for multi cameras when you have more than one printer setup.

Just a few ideas smiling smiley

Since the Duet Wifi and Duet Ethernet are such a well designed and near perfect controller as it is, this could be done all via network by using an Rpi as the point of interface too...
Let the Rpi do all the lifting and the Duet handles all the web interfacing....

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/15/2017 01:41PM by JustSumGuy.
Re: Duet enhancement ideas
November 15, 2017 05:42PM
Thanks for your suggestions. The processor on the current Duets doesn't do USB host mode, but we're already working on the next generation and planning the one after that. So at least some of those features will be coming in the future.

One of the low-cost IP cameras that we suggest for the Duet has pan and tilt motors built in. So if we can find out the commands to send, pan and tilt options could be included in Duet Web Control.

Large delta printer [miscsolutions.wordpress.com], Robotdigg SCARA printer, Crane Quad and Ormerod

Disclosure: I design Duet electronics and work on RepRapFirmware, [duet3d.com].
Re: Duet enhancement ideas
November 16, 2017 11:44AM
What do you think of the idea to use an Rpi3 as an external network connected control device?
Re: Duet enhancement ideas
November 16, 2017 12:43PM
The principle of using a separate processor to run the web server is sound, but it increases the system cost and complexity. So it's a good option for high-end systems, especially for users who are already technically competent or already familiar with the RPi or similar. It's not as suitable for less technical users who don't need the additional facilities that it provides.

Large delta printer [miscsolutions.wordpress.com], Robotdigg SCARA printer, Crane Quad and Ormerod

Disclosure: I design Duet electronics and work on RepRapFirmware, [duet3d.com].
Re: Duet enhancement ideas
November 16, 2017 04:21PM
PTZ control isn't exactly a defined standard across all manufacturers. I've got numerous PTZ cameras installed at my workplace that are used with the equipment and even just from camera manufacturing the PTZ commands / setup are different. Some even have proprietary PTZ communication and even between camera models on the same manufacturer. For example, Pelco PTZ can be PELCO-C, PELCO-D, etc... which is different for AXIS cameras and different again for Sony and Samsung.
Re: Duet enhancement ideas
July 05, 2018 01:03AM
A few more to add

1. External network VPN access - Many of us want to check up on prints while away from the house, it is a real pain to setup your own private VPN rather than using the web interface.

2. Panel duet Console- The ability to see the console outputs on the Panel Duet all the time on the main screen and print screen. There is more than enough real estate space on both screen even with dual hot ends and heated chamber, the console should also show all G-code commands including the ones moving the effector around on a print.

3. Print Status - The current print status on the Panel Duet is horrible, it always shows a time that is generally got nothing to do with the actual print time, at the very least a layer number and percentage of files completion would be good. this should go in the top header bar showing printer name (who needs the constant printer name.....)

4. Macro Buttons Panel Duet - Let us select what these are rather than just the last ones we used.

5. Panel Duet Priority - Often the Panel Duel does not issue a command until long after a previous command has complete. For example, when you start the hotend heating up no other commands from the Panel Duet will be accepted until the hotend reaches temp, this includes emergency stops. The Panel duet should get priority over all other commands.

6. Z Offsets - Allow us to set the Z offset (trigger height) from a macro command instead of having to change config file and restart. I often change surfaces between prints and this means the trigger height and Z height changes and this means I have to constantly update change the config file. Not such an issue except the recent Firmware updates causes the Wifi to drop out more often than 1.20 and also cause the config file to fail (disappear) meaning you have to grab the backup and restore it constantly.

7. 5V sensor - Change the voltage output to 5V instead of 3.3v. There seems to be way more sensors available (and supplied in printers) for 5V not 3.3v, you have the 5V there, why not use it?.

8. SD Load - Allow the loading of files through the Panel Duet SD slot without additional modifications, just makes sense to use this SD card for prints rather than the onboard one.

9. Replace Wif Card - Upgrade the WiFi card to one with better range and an external antenna. Most control board cases are metal, the little PCB antenna is terrible to begin with and its signal is nearly completely blocked by the case and made worse by the fact the antenna is horizontal polarised when 99.999% of mode/router WiFi antennas are vertically polarised (this means the power drop is 2 to the power of 10 or 2000+ times lower range). The WiFi card hardly makes it across a room without obstacles and becomes completely unreliable when it is added to an adjacent room with brick walls. An external antenna would mean not only could a high gain directional antenna be used to ensure good signal through walls, it would also mean the antenna could be placed outside the case and in a vertically polarised position to match the modem/router.

10. Current Position – For the price of the Panel Duet I can only assume it should have more than enough processor power to handle some basic visual displays like displaying and image of the sliced file in its current position in printing. This means even though you might not have a web camera, you can at least see where it should be in the print.

11. Dual Heated Chamber Temp Sensors – When running a heater for the chamber (i.e. when printing ABS and Polycarb) there is a need to use 2 temp sensors to accurately control the air temp. You need one for the actual air temp (I take this temp from a temp probe attached to the top of the effector) which is the temp you are trying to control, then you also need a second temp sensor also hooked into the PID controller so it can control the temp of the heating element and potentially also the fan spend on the heating element. With the dual temp sensor setup it means the heating element can run a PWM control cycle that holds the temp on the element at the right temp to maintain the set temp for the chamber instead of just bang bang heating which sees a reasonable variance in temp due to the sudden amount of heat that can be generated from a heating element when turned on at full pace.
Re: Duet enhancement ideas
July 05, 2018 08:45AM
Thanks for your suggestions. I'm on vacation so I'll be brief:

1. VPN: insufficient processing power and RAM to do this. Better to do it in the router.

2. Console always showing: screen resolution is only 800x480 on the larger screens so we wouldn't be able to show much. But I'd be interested to see your suggestions for a redesigned main page. I'm thinking of moving the tool settings to a separate popup window already.

3. The progress bar already shows the proportion of the file that is complete, but without a numerical figure. Layer count is a very inaccurate way of judging print completion.

4. You can already choose the order on which macros are displayed. The first 4 are shown on the Control page if there are not too many tools. So you can choose which 4 are shown.

5. It's a fundamental rule of GCode that heat-and-wait commands must be completed before any other commands from that channel are accepted.

6. Have you tried using baby stepping?

7. The Duet Maestro provides selectable 3.3V/5V endstop power.

8. You already can prinr from the SD slot in Panel Due if you use the ribbon cable connection. But it's much slower than the built in SD card. Given that almost all Duet users upload files through the web interface, it makes sense for the built in SD card to be the default.

9. We are considering offering the Duet WiFi with external antenna.

10. Enough power, possibly. Enough RAM, no.

11. The hardware already supports this but the firmware would need to be changed to support PID with 2 temp sensors. But I am not aware of any standard control algorithm for this set up.

Regards David

Large delta printer [miscsolutions.wordpress.com], Robotdigg SCARA printer, Crane Quad and Ormerod

Disclosure: I design Duet electronics and work on RepRapFirmware, [duet3d.com].
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