TalonSRX vs. Spark Motor Controllers -- What are the benefits/drawbacks of the TalonSRX?

I’m not quite understanding what the benefits of using the TalonSRX is. It requires manually assigning it an ID, daisy-chaining them together, and updating their firmware. Whereas the Spark motor controller simply needs enough PWM ports available in order to work. So what benefits does the TalonSRX have over the Spark?

Built-in PID loops for position, motion magic, motion profiles, and velocity. It also supports currently limiting along with support for closed loop current. There are also lots of resources available, and the talon does its own processing on its own, separate from the Rio. It also frees up PWM slots for other things. We used Sparks in 2017 and switched to Talon SRX’s/Victor SPX’s since. The only downside is the cost, as firmware updates can bring new features, daisy chaining really isn’t that bad, and assigning ID’s are ezpz.

Oh, and did I mention an insane amount of documentation?

Of course, it’s all up to you, but I prefer the Talons.

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I read somewhere that they’re discontinuing the original Sparks? Can someone confirm this?

This year daisy chaining was very beneficial to use because we only had to run power wires and a green and yellow CAN Bus wire up our boom. Because we have our talons ride up and down the boom, we could also plug our encoder and limit switch wires directly into those.

If you don’t use the black-box closed-loop control or current limiting, then there isn’t any significant advantage, so the lower cost of the SPARK wins out. However, many teams have found that setting up the closed loop PID is much cleaner (smaller block of code, less confusion) using the Talon motor controller API than creating a PIDcontroller instance. As noted above, it also can reduce the length and number of data wire runs if you don’t mind moving the motor controllers out to the actuators.

Rev wanted to prioritize manufacturing their MAX’s. They ran out of stock of the original Sparks for 2019. Source: http://www.revrobotics.com/rev-11-1200/

This 100 percent implementing PIDF and closed loop velocity loops is super easy also my team (6377) has loved motion magic

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