[ros-users] Node for using MFD and colored LEDs for Saitek X52 Pro

Christian Holl choll at synapticon.com
Fri Nov 8 23:40:34 UTC 2013

Hi all,

If anybody wants to use ROS with the Saitek X52 Pro and it's multifunction
display, here is my code for doing that:


The node is based upon the x52_pro_lib (credits to the programmer) which
supports accessing every extended functionality of the joystick.

With the node you are able to set the text, the time field, the color for
each button LED which supports color change, setting the back-light
brightness, and printing text at any position of the display.

Inside the package there is also a node which can use any standard message
basic type (bool, int, double or joy axis) as input to set the color of a
specific button. Everything for this node is configured inside the launch
file. There is a special syntax for which color is displayed at a specific
value. A example of it, using the joy topic can be found inside the launch
The example uses the wheel around button E to change the color of button A
and B.

One of the buttons is green when the wheel is centered, while the other one
is red. If the wheel is maxed in any direction, it's the other way round.
In between, both buttons are yellow.

What's missing, but should be there:

-A node like the one for the colored buttons, but for printing the value as
text on a specified position of the MFD.

-A time node which gets the system time and updates the time value on the

-awesome detailed documentation ( uh, sorry ;-) )

What would be really cool:
A generic MFD Menu controlled by the selector wheels near the display,
should be possible, if you are funny ;-)

Have fun!




*Christian Holl*Systems Engineer

*Synapticon*  |  Cyber-Physical System Solutions


+49 173 / 36 10 285


+49 7335 / 186 999 11

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