In order to meet the requirements of research on tension control system based on magnetorheological fluid (MRF) damper, an experimental system of tension measurement and control was developed using an industrial personal computer as hardware control center and using VC software as development tool. By applying the sensing and measuring, computer signal processing, motor speed control, and smart material technologies, the system can achieve the tasks of automatic tension measure and the automatic control of the whole running process. The system has the functions of speed measurement and control, tension measurement and control, as well as power supply control. The experimental data can be displayed and stored in real time. The system has friendly man-machine interfaces. The system can be maintained and expanded easily. Experimental test shows that the system can be effectively used for the research of the tension control based on the MRF damper.