LEGO® Mindstorms® vs. VEXiq

Hello, everyone! I am DamonMM2000, popular online with LEGO® robotics. I currently have a LEGO® Mindstorms® EV3 set I bought for $350. I have thoroughly enjoyed the set, and currently enjoying the set, and am confident that I will forever build with LEGO® robotics. I just learned about this VEX robotics system. I doubt I will buy a VEX set anytime soon, but would like you to seriously compare the two set and tell me what you think of the differences and what you would have gotten had you had the choice. If I do end up someday getting a VEX set (as it seems very interesting) I would probably purchase the super set. Thank you…

For starters have a look at Steve Hassenplug’s (technical) comparison of the two systems:

@ Jetro de Château: Thank you for the helpful link! It helped me a bit, but doesn’t fully satisfy me. :rolleyes:

I took some time to view your webpages and can see a lot of fresh enthusiasm. Though, this posting may not satisfy you either. As a LEGO Community Oldtimer (since before the RCX days), MCP, prior MDP, and now VEX SuperUser (with robot books under my wing)…I recommend getting your hands on at least a VEX IQ Super Kit and experience what differences are possible and from an out-of-the-box prespective. The two systems are totally different though similar in overall functionality. VEX IQ is very very young compared to the old age of LMS. In my opinion, a comparative can not be properly made. Its like comparing apples to oranges. While both systems can be utilized to create robots and other models there is a completely different building style to each. Both have very different weaknesses and benefits. I would say there are too many differences to list and listing them would only make this outcome clear…to personally experience both and make one’s own decisions. Variety is the spice of life. Your life is as different from my life as these two building systems are from eachother. Good luck and take my advice…refrain from limiting your own explorations.

**@ Chris Smith: **Thank you for your feedback! I think that is a great choice, just experimenting with the VEX (IQ) system and see what it is like. May I ask another question? Is the building part pretty similar to LEGO bricks? Thank you!

The building styles are completely different. Though, your mind can still picture the possible construct you wish to create just as easily with either system. I have found that with the VEX IQ system building is quicker, easier, and less stressful. Additionally, rebuilding due to a minor change is again quicker, easier, and less stressful while involving fewer parts.

**@ Chris Smith: **Okay, thank you very much for your information! I am sure to have use for it.

Specs, speeds and feeds have little real world value except to marketing departments. I don’t know where you live, but in Pennsylvania we allow Lego robots to compete along side Vex IQ in unofficial matches. We have never had a Lego robot take us up on this offer, but I for one would love to see it happen. In my opinion, the only way to accurately compare the two robot systems would be to actually have them compete side-by-side (but even that would be the subject of much debate). The argument could be made that one is a hammer and the other a screw driver, both tools but still very different. Asking a hammer to compete in a screw turning contest would not be a good indication of the hammer’s quality as a tool. Just as asking a screw driver to compete in a nail driving contest would not accurately represent the screw driver’s quality…
All that said I think the Vex IQ bots would wipe the floor with the Lego bots :wink:

Biggest difference between VEX IQ and Lego EV3 is the number of ports. EV3 can only connect 4 motors and 4 sensors. VEX IQ can connect 12 devices, motors and sensors are considered a device. This allows the building of robots that can DO A LOT MORE!

Additional sensors and motors ports is very useful on a robot, but let’s not forget that there are many third party sensors for the MINDSTORMS platforms that allow you to connect way more motors and sensors than the VEX IQ. However, with more sensors and motors comes more programming complexity.
I think the actual platform used in a competition is not really relevant. A robot is only ever going to be as good as the combination of mechanics and software behind it. You can make equally complex mechanisms with both.

I love both platforms, but for different reasons:

I like the MINDSTORMS platform because of its rich palette of 3rd party sensors and vast array of parts (pretty much all of the LEGO parts will work). I have a very large collection of Technic LEGO, so there isn’t much that I wouldn’t be able to build.

I love the VEX IQ because it has nice compact motors and sensors and a growing set of parts that are proving very useful for making great robotics platforms. The best thing I like about VEX IQ is that the company behind it is much more open to listening to its users and is continuously improving and enhancing its product. I have to keep reminding myself that VEX IQ is a relatively new player in the plastic robotics platform business. The pricing of the VEX IQ is really, really great. Whereas the EV3 battery pack would set me back 140 USD in Europe, I would only pay about 25 USD for the VEX IQ battery. The apparent value for money is much greater, IMHO, with the VEX IQ platform. The expansion addon kits are really awesome for the VEX IQ and feel like really good value.

The MINDSTORMS platform has a very large community, with lots of sites and 3rd party books that offer many building and programming instructions. This is something I miss on the VEX IQ side, but again, I have to remind myself that they’re still the New Kid On The Block. I am sure this is something that will be remedied in time.

= Xander