Technical problems with E-709 Digital Piezo Controller and PIFOC in Multi-D mode

Dear community,

lately, our lab did install the PI PIFOC piezo z stage to our microscopy set up. We control this stage with the E-709 Digital Piezo Controller it is connected with mini B to usb A cord to our Windows 10 PC. The PIFOC is the only stage connected. We control the whole microscopy set up (iXon3 Andor camera and AOTF control unit) with the µManager 2.0. I did implement the new piezo z stage to it useing the PI_GSC_2 plug in. At first, everything worked fine but just last week, error messages started to occur. Now, taking a z stack via the multi dimensional acquisition panel in µManager results in either error, because the device (USB - E-709 Digital Piezo Controller) could not be found or in a very slow, delayed acquisition. Controlling the z stage ‘manually’ via a slide control in the property browser of the µManager works without any problems. As well, the E-709 Digital Piezo controller is recognized by the PC at all times. Is someone operating with a similar set up and can help me with this?

I am grateful for any suggestions!

Welcome to this forum @E_Meiser !

Did anything obvious change last week (new software, new USB device, etc…)? I am happy to look at the logging output to see if anything stands out (Help > Report Problem). When you “send” the report, I will get a copy (or you can post the relevant excerpt here). Also, PI has been very supportive of using their equipment under Micro-Manager, so you may want to contact their support.

1 Like

Dear @nicost,
Thank you very much for your support! Nothing obvious changed. As the addition to our set up is very new, I can not be sure if it was working reliabel at the first place. I am very grateful to take your offer to send the logging output. I will try to send it as soon as possible :slight_smile: . I was experiencing a good support of PI already. Unfortunately, the support was not able to help at this problem.

This problem was solved by @nicost. He found that, because of some rounding error, the µManager tries to send the stage to a small negative position rather than sending it to zero. Since the stage can only travel in a range of 0.0 - 100.0 microns this becomes a problem. I was able to reproduce this error consistently. I now avoid negative positions when setting the stage to zero and had no problems since.

2 Likes