robotics and animatronics

Animatronics > Show Control Software > Brookshire VSA

Brookshire VSA

Company: Brookshire Software, LLC

Software: Servo, digital relay, motor, video, audio, and DMX programming

Location: Springfield, Virginia USA


Programming an animatronics show is a time consuming process. A good animatronics software package speeds up the process and improves the quality of the final show. There are very few good off-the-shelf programming packages designed specifically for animatronics. Brookshire Software's Visual Show Automation (VSA) is one such good animatronics program.

While not as complete as Gilderfluke's PC-MACS, VSA is a very solid package. Although Brookshire charges a license fee for VSA and Gilderfluke gives the playback version of PC-MACS away with a hardware purchase, VSA supports a variety of low cost control equipment. Smaller shows with digital relays and servo control may have an overall lower cost, even after paying the software fees. Using VSA software, the show must run off a PC or laptop unless a controller like Brookshire's RAPU controller is used to store and play back the show data.

The real strength of the VSA software is its compatibility with lower cost control cards and electronics from a variety of manufacturers. For large animatronic shows and productions, VSA may not provide enough control and programming features. For smaller to moderate shows, VSA may be a great option, particularly for those who do not mind tinkering. Listed below is some of the electronic equipment that may be compatible with the VSA software. Always verify compatibility with Brookshire software and the equipment manufacturer before purchasing.

  • Scott Edwards Mini SSC II - Servo Controller
  • Pontech SV203 - Servo Controller
  • Mondotronics SMI - DC Motor Controller
  • Parallax Serial Servo Controller
  • Parallax USB Servo Controller
  • Parallax Propeller Servo Controller
  • PicoPIC - Servo and Digital Output Controller
  • Pololu USB 16 - Servo Controller
  • LynxMotion SSC32
  • Brookshire RAPU
  • Blue Point Engineering (multiple items)
  • ENTTEC Open/Pro DMX-512 Interface
  • Chauvet DMX Lighting