They have to support what they sell, and having one option saves them a lot of time and money.
They should be transitioning to Mach4 soon, which should be much better than Mach3. I'm sure that's what they'll have when you're ready to buy. :wink:
FWIW, I believe the problem has to do with plasma torch height control (THC) at Warp9's (Smoothstepper) end. I I could be wrong, but I believe the main issue was ESS integration with the TMC3in1k while running under Mach4. I see that Warp9 came out with Build 241 in the last couple of weeks. It appears that the integration issue is now worked out.
The above matters, because CNCRP/Avid sells plasma stuff. I believe they have been holding off on Mach4 plug & play until the THC issues were worked out. I suspect we will be seeing folks at CNCRP/Avid release the Mach4 plug and play any day now. :grin:
I use Mach4 Hobby. I upgraded from Mach3. I like it soooo much better than Mach3 and have no complaints. It does what I want it to, and does it well.
I won't get into the UCCNC vs [insert any other control system] debate I see on this and other forums. UCCNC has its proponents, as does Mach4, Acorn and others. Most of us don't have the time, money or inclination to build/buy multiple electronics boxes and software to test the various combinations. Although I wouldn't go with Mach3, I otherwise suggest that you pick one and "love the one you're with."
I should note that I don't have a CNCRP/Avid machine or their Plug & Play electronics. I purchased their pro ballscrew Z axis and a few other things from them, but that's it. My first machine was a 4 x 4 kit from a competitor. I am currently finishing up a build of another 80/20 extrusion-based 4 x 4, but one that's significantly heavier, stiffer and more accurate than the kit machines. For electronics, my main board is a PMDX-126, with PMDX-107 for spindle control. I have the ESS installed on the PMDX-126. I am also running NEMA 34s and a 2.2kw Chinese spindle/HY VFD.
FWIW, while I could fit a 4 x 8 machine in my shop, it would be a tight fit. So, I opted for a 4 x 4. The smaller size hasn't been particularly limiting. When I cut parts larger than my bed, I can make tiled toolpaths. I don't do that very often. I make all manner of stuff (2d & 3d). So far (knock on wood), a 4 x 4 has been all I need.
Finally, if you buy a CNCRP/Avid pro machine, give some thought about what work you want to do before you assemble it. If you have any thought toward cabinetmaking, even if only for your shop, you will want the capability to cut dovetails. That will mean being able to cut off the front of your machine. I'm not sure how far the cutter in a spindle overhangs the frame on a CNCRP/Avid pro machine, but you will need a few inches clearance. If the pro machine doesn't provide that "out of the box," you will need to set the front crossmember back sufficient to give you room to cut dovetails. There are alternatives, but they usually involve making removeable sections of spoilboard. The loss of a few inches of table length made the most sense to me. Your mileage may differ.
Finally, if you pull the trigger before CNCRP/Avid releases the setup for Mach4, there are a lot of resources here and on the Zone who will be happy to help you with the setup. It's really not that difficult to do. Warp9 has excellent instructions here: https://warp9td.com/index.php/gettingstarted/setting-up-the-smoothstepper-and-mach4