Mechanical Rotary Encoders

Mechanical rotary encoders, also called shaft encoders, are electro-mechanical devices that convert the angular motions (movement around fixed points) of rotary shafts into either analogue or digital signals.

What are mechanical rotary encoders used for?

Applications that require precision shaft rotation (movement around a specific point) make use of mechanical rotary encoders.

These include industrial control machinery in factories, rotating radar platforms in satellite structures or computer input devices like trackballs and mice.


Types of mechanical rotary encoders

Absolute encoders:

  • have tracking functions to determine specific shaft positioning points in industrial equipment like CNC machines, lathes and bore machines.
  • maintain positioning data even when power is cut from the system. When the system is switched on again it begins operating from the point where it stopped previously.


Incremental (relative) encoders:

  • record deviations in shaft position points over certain time frames. With each new time frame after power is cut and switched on again the encoder starts recording from a predetermined reference and measures the distance between the previous point and the current point.

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Description Price Pulses Per Revolution Shaft Style Shaft Diameter Encoder Reading Encoder Signal Mounting Type Shaft Length Index Output Maximum Operating Speed Mounting Hole Diameter Current Rating
RS Stock No. 623-4136
Mfr. Part No.EC11B202440M
MYR23.91
Each
units
20 Flat - - - Through Hole 20mm Not Indexed - - -
RS Stock No. 172-8134
Mfr. Part No.EC11B15242AF
MYR27.562
Each (In a Tray of 70)
units
15 Flat 6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 20mm Not Indexed - 1 mm, 2.1 x 1.8 mm -
RS Stock No. 729-5564
Mfr. Part No.EC11B15242AF
MYR28.76
Each
units
15 Flat 6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 20mm Not Indexed - 1 mm, 2.1 x 1.8 mm -
RS Stock No. 265-1723
Mfr. Part No.EC16B2410408
MYR6.60
Each
units
24 Flat 6 mm Incremental - Through Hole 25mm - - 2 x 2.1 mm, 1.2 mm 0.5mA
RS Stock No. 663-3230
Mfr. Part No.DPL12SV2424A25K3
MYR27.52
Each
units
24 Knurl 6.8 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 25mm Not Indexed 60rpm 1 mm, 1.1 mm -
RS Stock No. 172-6318
Mfr. Part No.EC12E1220813
MYR6.96
Each (In a Tray of 95)
units
12 Flat 6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 25mm Not Indexed - 1 mm, 2.1 x 2 mm -
RS Stock No. 167-5395
Mfr. Part No.PEC12R-2225F-N0024
BrandBourns
MYR2.59
Each (In a Bag of 75)
units
24 Flat 6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 15mm Not Indexed 100rpm 1 mm, 2 x 2.1 mm -
RS Stock No. 789-9611
Mfr. Part No.PEC12R-2225F-N0024
BrandBourns
MYR3.95
Each
units
24 Flat 6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 15mm Not Indexed 100rpm 1 mm, 2 x 2.1 mm -
RS Stock No. 729-5839
Mfr. Part No.EC12E1220813
MYR7.96
Each
units
12 Flat 6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 25mm Not Indexed - 1 mm, 2.1 x 2 mm -
RS Stock No. 172-8066
Mfr. Part No.EC16B2410408
MYR5.113
Each (In a Tray of 60)
units
24 Flat 6 mm Incremental - Through Hole 25mm - - 1.2 mm, 2 x 2.1 mm -
RS Stock No. 136-1846
Mfr. Part No.DPL12SV2424A25K3
MYR19.424
Each (In a Box of 1000)
units
24 Knurl 6.8 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole 25mm Not Indexed 60rpm 1 mm, 1.1 mm -
RS Stock No. 623-4079
Mfr. Part No.EC11B15244A7
MYR25.83
Each
units
15 Flat - - - Through Hole 20mm Not Indexed - - -
RS Stock No. 714-0234
Mfr. Part No.AEAT-6010-A06
BrandBroadcom
MYR96.57
Each
units
- Plain 6 mm Absolute - Screw Mount 8.5mm Not Indexed 12000rpm 0.13mm -
RS Stock No. 178-2944
Mfr. Part No.AEAT-6010-A06
BrandBroadcom
MYR89.346
Each (In a Tray of 280)
units
- Plain 6 mm Absolute - Screw Mount 8.5mm Not Indexed 12000rpm 0.13mm -
RS Stock No. 172-6320
Mfr. Part No.EC16B242040R
MYR5.384
Each (In a Tray of 60)
units
24 Flat 6 mm Incremental - Through Hole 25mm - - 1.2 mm, 2 x 2.1 mm -
RS Stock No. 265-1739
Mfr. Part No.EC16B242040R
MYR14.23
Each
units
24 Flat 6 mm Incremental - Through Hole 25mm - - 1.2 mm, 2 x 2.1 mm -
RS Stock No. 172-6281
Mfr. Part No.EC10E1220505
MYR2.50
Each (In a Bag of 400)
units
12 Hollow 3.6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole - Not Indexed - 1 mm, 2.1 x 1.8 mm -
RS Stock No. 729-5545
Mfr. Part No.EC10E1220505
MYR3.17
Each
units
12 Hollow 3.6 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Through Hole - Not Indexed - 1 mm, 2.1 x 1.8 mm -
RS Stock No. 263-2918
Mfr. Part No.EAW0J-B24-AE0128L
BrandBourns
MYR30.37
Each
units
128 Plain with Slot 6.35 mm Absolute Digital Bracket Mount 19.05mm Not Indexed 120rpm 9mm -
RS Stock No. 737-7697
Mfr. Part No.EMS22Q51-D28-LT4
BrandBourns
MYR123.22
Each
units
256 Plain 3.17 mm Incremental Digital Square Wave Bracket Mount 22.23mm Indexed 10000rpm - -