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Unit 1 - 6115 4 St SE
Calgary AB  T2H 2H9

MaxBotix EZ-1 Sonar Sensor

ID: 1128_0

This sonar sensor measures the distance of an object using ultrasonic waves.

For new systems and projects, we recommend using the following VINT products instead of this one.

The Sonar Sensor is a compact high performance ultrasonic rangefinder made by MaxBotix that can detect objects at a distance of 6 to 254 inches (6.45 m) with a 1 inch (25.4 mm)resolution. The sensor automatically calibrates itself when powered up.

The Phidget cable that ships with the 1128 must be soldered to the sensor board; the EZ-1 sensor can then be connected to an analog port on a PhidgetInterface board and controlled through our powerful API.

Comes packaged with


Interface Boards and Hubs

This sensor can be read by any Phidget with an Analog Input or VINT Hub port. It will connect to either one using the included Phidget cable. VINT Hub ports can behave just like Analog Inputs, but have the added flexibility of being able to be used as digital inputs, digital outputs, or ports to communicate with VINT devices. For more information about VINT, see the VINT Overview page.

Product Voltage Inputs
Part Number Price Number of Voltage Inputs Voltage Input Resolution
PhidgetInterfaceKit 8/8/8 Mini-Format
$80.00 8 10 bit
PhidgetInterfaceKit 2/2/2
$50.00 2 10 bit
PhidgetInterfaceKit 8/8/8
$80.00 8 10 bit
PhidgetInterfaceKit 8/8/8
$80.00 8
PhidgetInterfaceKit 8/8/8 w/6 Port Hub
$110.00 8 10 bit
PhidgetTextLCD 20X2 : White : Integrated PhidgetInterfaceKit 8/8/8
$70.00 8 10 bit
8x Voltage Input Phidget
$20.00 8 12 bit
VINT Hub Phidget
$30.00 6 (Shared) * 16 bit
VINT Hub Phidget
$40.00 6 (Shared)
1-Port VINT Hub Phidget
$24.00 1 (Shared)
Wireless VINT Hub
$60.00 6 (Shared) * 16 bit
$120.00 6 (Shared) * 16 bit

Phidget Cables

This sensor comes with its own Phidget cable that can be soldered to the board and connected to an InterfaceKit or Hub, but if you need extras we have a full list down below. You can solder multiple cables together in order to make even longer Phidget cables, but you should be aware of the effects of having long wires in your system.

Product Physical Properties
Part Number Price Cable Length
Phidget Cable 60cm
$2.00 600 mm
Phidget Cable 10cm
$1.50 100 mm
Phidget Cable 350cm
$3.00 3.5 m
Phidget Cable 120cm
$2.25 1.2 m
Phidget Cable 180cm
$2.75 1.8 m
Phidget Cable 30cm
$1.75 300 mm
Phidget Cable 90cm
$2.00 900 mm
Phidget Cable 150cm
$2.50 1.5 m

Getting Started

Welcome to the 1128 user guide! In order to get started, make sure you have the following hardware on hand:

Next, you will need to connect the pieces:

1128 0 Connecting The Hardware.jpg
Black Wire Red Wire White Wire Fourth Wire
GND +5 AN RX (optional)
  1. Connect the 1128 to the HUB0000 with the Phidget cable.
  2. If you're using the fourth wire, connect it to a digital output port on the HUB0000.
  3. Connect the HUB0000 to your computer with the USB cable.

Now that you have everything together, let's start using the 1128!

Using the 1128

Phidget Control Panel

In order to demonstrate the functionality of the 1128, we will connect it to the HUB0000, and then run an example using the Phidget Control Panel on a Windows machine.

The Phidget Control Panel is available for use on both macOS and Windows machines. If you would like to follow along, first take a look at the getting started guide for your operating system:

Linux users can follow the getting started with Linux guide and continue reading here for more information about the 1128.

First Look

After plugging in the 1128 into the HUB0000, and the HUB0000 into your computer, open the Phidget Control Panel. You will see something like this:

HUB0000 Panel.jpg

The Phidget Control Panel will list all connected Phidgets and associated objects, as well as the following information:

  • Serial number: allows you to differentiate between similar Phidgets.
  • Channel: allows you to differentiate between similar objects on a Phidget.
  • Version number: corresponds to the firmware version your Phidget is running. If your Phidget is listed in red, your firmware is out of date. Update the firmware by double-clicking the entry.

The Phidget Control Panel can also be used to test your device. Double-clicking on an object will open an example.

Voltage Ratio Input

Double-click on a Voltage Ratio Input object in order to run the example:

1018 Sensors VoltageRatioInput.png

General information about the selected object will be displayed at the top of the window. You can also experiment with the following functionality:

  • Modify the change trigger and/or data interval value by dragging the sliders. For more information on these settings, see the data interval/change trigger page.
  • Select the 1128 from the Sensor Type drop-down menu. The example will now convert the voltage into distance (cm) automatically. Converting the voltage to distance (cm) is not specific to this example, it is handled by the Phidget libraries, with functions you have access to when you begin developing!

Digital Output

Double-click on a Digital Output object in order to run the example:

1010 1018 1019DigitalOutput OnOff Example.jpg

General information about the selected object will be displayed at the top of the window. You can also experiment with the following functionality:

  • Toggle the state of the digital output by pressing the button. This will turn the sensor on/off if you have connected RX to the digital output.

Technical Details


The Sonar Sensor is manufactured by MaxBotix. We have added a Phidget cable and instructions on soldering the cable to the sensor. The 1128 is ratiometric. Ensure you are using the Voltage Ratio object. Each time the LV-MaxSonar®-EZ1™ is powered up, it will calibrate during its first read cycle. The sensor uses this stored information to range a close object. It is important that objects not be close to the sensor during this calibration cycle. The best sensitivity is obtained when it is clear for fourteen inches, but good results are common when clear for at least seven inches. If an object is too close during the calibration cycle, the sensor may then ignore objects at that distance. The LV-MaxSonar®-EZ1™ does not use the calibration data to temperature compensate for range, but instead to compensate for the sensor ringdown pattern. If the temperature, humidity, or applied voltage changes during operation, the sensor may require recalibration to reacquire the ringdown pattern. Unless recalibrated, if the temperature increases, the sensor is more likely to have false close readings. If the temperature decreases, the sensor is more likely to have reduced upclose sensitivity. To recalibrate the LV-MaxSonar®-EZ1™, cycle power. For more complete specifications on the MaxSonar-EZ1, please visit MaxBotix.


Since the beam width is fairly large and sound tends to reflect more than light, sonar sensors will interfere with one another if more than one is active in a sensor array. To avoid interference we recommend that you poll each sensor individually and only activate the specific sensor you are polling. That way you can activate one sensor, read the distance, and then deactivate it before moving to the next sensor. This will give you clean results. Perhaps the easiest way to achieve this is to take the power line from the sensor and connect it to a digital output of your HUB0000 (or compatible product) instead of the normal analog input power pin. This will allow you to toggle the power to the device and turn it on or off at will.


The Phidget libraries can automatically convert sensor voltage into distance (cm) by selecting the appropriate SensorType. See the Phidget22 API for more details. The formula to translate voltage ratio from the sensor to distance is:

Phidget Cable


The Phidget Cable is a 3-pin, 0.100 inch pitch locking connector. Pictured here is a plug with the connections labelled. The connectors are commonly available - refer to the Analog Input Primer for manufacturer part numbers.

What to do Next

  • Programming Languages - Find your preferred programming language here and learn how to write your own code with Phidgets!
  • Phidget Programming Basics - Once you have set up Phidgets to work with your programming environment, we recommend you read our page on to learn the fundamentals of programming with Phidgets.

Product Specifications

Sensor Properties
Sensor Type Distance (Sonar)
Controlled By VoltageRatio Input
Sensor Output Type Ratiometric
Measurement Distance Min 152.4 mm
Measurement Distance Max 6.5 m
Measurement Distance Resolution 25.4 mm
Sonar Ping Rate 20 Hz
Electrical Properties
Supply Voltage Min 3 V DC
Supply Voltage Max 5.3 V DC
Current Consumption Max 3 mA
Output Impedance 14.7 kΩ
Physical Properties
Operating Temperature Min -40 °C
Operating Temperature Max 65 °C
Customs Information
Canadian HS Export Code 8473.30.00
American HTS Import Code 8473.30.51.00
Country of Origin US (United States)


For information on connecting the sonar sensor and using the Phidgets API, read the User Guide. For detailed technical information on the EZ1 sensor, read the Maxbotix datasheet.

Product History

Date Board Revision Device Version Comment
February 2008 N/A N/A Product Release

This device doesn't have an API of its own. It is controlled by opening a VoltageRatioInput channel on the Phidget that it's connected to. For a list of compatible Phidgets with VoltageRatio Inputs, see the Connection & Compatibility tab.

You can find details for the VoltageRatioInput API on the API tab for the Phidget that this sensor connects to.

Code Samples

Example Options


				Make your selections to display sample code.

Have a look at our distance sensors:

Product Sensor Properties
Part Number Price Sensor Type Controlled By Measurement Distance Min Measurement Distance Max
IR Reflective Sensor 1-4mm
$5.00 Distance (Infrared) VoltageRatio Input 1.5 mm 4 mm
Sharp Distance Sensor (4-30cm)
$14.00 Distance (Infrared) Sharp Adapter 40 mm 300 mm
Sharp Distance Sensor (10-80cm)
$12.00 Distance (Infrared) Sharp Adapter 100 mm 800 mm
Sharp Distance Sensor (20-150cm)
$16.00 Distance (Infrared) Sharp Adapter 200 mm 1.5 m
Distance Phidget
$30.00 Distance (Infrared) VINT 4 mm * 170 mm
Distance Phidget
$30.00 Distance (Infrared) VINT 20 mm * 650 mm
Distance Phidget 1300mm
$35.00 Distance (Infrared) VINT 20 mm * 1.3 m
Sonar Phidget
$25.00 Distance (Sonar) VINT 40 mm 10 m