TB6600 Stepper Motor Driver

Hi there, I’m looking to buy a driver for a nema 23 stepper motor I have with a rating of 2.8 amps per phase and 3.2 volts
I can see the TB6600 has a peak rating of 4 amps but just wanted to clarify the relationship between peak amps and amps per phase?
Also the input of the driver is 9 - 42 volts, but motor (and a lot of other motors i’ve seen online) seem to run at around 3.2 volts . . will this driver work? If not are you able to recommend one that will?
many thanks !

Hey @Dylan16128

The Voltage/Current rating of the phase simply means that if you supply 3.2V to a phase, it will draw 2.8 Amps. The critical part here is the current - too much and the motor coils burn out. As such, to use the TB6600 you would simply set its current limit to 2.8 Amps as per the spec of the motor you’re looking at.

The reason the voltage supply is higher than the coil voltage of the motor is so the motor can be driven at high frequencies. High voltages allow the nominal 2.8A to be driven in the presence of switching EMF.


ok great thanks for your response. So by high frequency do you simply mean that more voltage will allow the motor to go faster? If so, the driver has an input of 9 - 42 v , so is anything in that range ok for any stepper motor I drive with it, (as long as the current is limited to whatever the rating is on the data sheet)?

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Driving motors is all about the current. To rapidly change the direction of current we need to apply high voltages. As a case study, lets say we have 0A flowing through a motor coil. Inductance in a coil tries to keep current flow constant. If we apply a small voltage to the coil, the current will rise slowly until it reaches the limit. To very quickly force the current to flow, we want to apply a high voltage until the current flows at the amount that we want, then we can back off the voltage to the steady-state value which maintains our desired current.

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great thanks very much for clarifying, that’s very helpful !

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Hi again - I’ve got the stepper up and running and works fine, the only thing is that the motor seems to emit a high pitched noise/whine when enable is HIGH. Is this normal with this driver? or could it be a faulty motor? If it is normal is there some method to suppress the noise? cheers

Sounds like the motor is holding in a micro-step. This noise is part-and-parcel with driving steppers. Changing the drive frequency can help (if that’s an option on this unit) but it’s a bit of an experiment.
If you disable microstepping does the sound improve?

Hi, I have 3 of these on a small CNC router to run, will the TB6600 suit? If so, what size power supply will I need to run the 3 steppers and 3 x TB6600

The TB6600 will be fine for your application, but note that your motors are rated for 4.6A and the TB6600 has a maximum current limit of 3.5A. This means your motors will not be able to generate their maximum torque, which may negatively affect your maximum material feed-rate at the spindle. This is because the motors might not be able to push the material in hard enough into the spindle to get the maximum feed rate. Worst case is that your cuts are marginally slower than they might be - so not really a problem, more of a constraint.

This power supply is (I think) the most appropriate we have for the job - if you are comfortable wiring mains to it that is. It’s vastly over-specced for the job, but it ticks all the boxes. Otherwise, if you can locate a 12V 4A+ supply that would do nicely.

Thank you very much Michael. I will purchase the power supply you mention and stepper drivers, it sounds easier, and a more power is always better, less overheating, I forgot to mention the stepper motors are 6 wire uni-polar, do I just connect the 2 sets of coils normally and not worry about the 2 center tap wires? I guess the extra power in the power supply would help in any step lag?

Yes, 6-wire steppers can be driven in a bipolar configuration, as shown below (top right). Ignore the colour labels - this is pulled from a specific manufacturer.

Hi Micheal :slight_smile:
i BOUGHT THE TB6600 Stepper Motor Driver and need to run a
Nema 23 Stepper Motor Bipolar L=56mm w/ Gear Ratio 4:1 Planetary Gearbox ( link here )
I’m using a Smoothieboard and I believe I’ve wired it up correctly…

But I can’t seem to get it to move…
I’ll try a couple of things out soon, but it’s nice to be abale to chat about it

I’ve pulled the 5V power in the same way… and done the “o” Open drain too…

I have used the DQ860MA before and it worked fine… so I’m wondering if I bought the wrong Stepper motor driver ?

Trace out your wiring and post the image. Often, the procedure of actually putting it down on paper will reveal any errors.

Then wire up the TB6600 directly to an Arduino to confirm that it is driving the stepper correctly. That should work properly unless something is damaged. Note the voltage readings on the logic supply and the control inputs. Then connect up to the smoothie and check that the voltage for the TB6600 is correct, and that you get the same readings for the step and direction inputs that you were getting with the Arduino setup.