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using scrollers on etc express

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by gregeye, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. gregeye

    gregeye Member

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    Hello,

    I am looking to use some scrollers for our highschool and wanted to know how or if they are able to work on the etc express? And if so, how easy is it to program into cues?
  2. sk8rsdad

    sk8rsdad Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    It's easy to use scrollers on an Express. The right way to do it is by defining a personality and using the Fixture Patch features. The lazy way to do it is to allocate a channel and treat it like a dimmer. If you do it the right way it can be defined as LTP and Independent. If you do it the lazy way you have to be careful about unwanted and unneeded scroller moves.

    This collaborative article Programming Moving Lights on an ETC Express+ion which BTW is the first hit if you use the SEARCH function, answers your question quite well.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011
  3. xander

    xander Active Member

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    Few clarifications. One, even if you do it the "lazy" way you can still make the channels independent and LTP in the Channel Attributes display. Two, the only reason you would want to use the fixture patch is if you wanted to create a personality that included the intensity channel in the fixture. This would allow you to control it like it was one unit. Selecting the fixture would then allow you to control the intensity with the keypad and the scroll on the trackpad. Also, if you had something like a CXI with two scrolls, one could be the X-axis, the other the Y-axis. This makes it easier to control the whole thing as one without having to keep keying in different channel numbers.

    -Tim
  4. gregeye

    gregeye Member

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    ok great thanks to the both of you, now the only thing is how do I connect them in order to control them from the board?
  5. sk8rsdad

    sk8rsdad Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    This helpful video from our friends at Apollo will give you the basic background info for setting up their scrollers. While addressing may be different, the cabling applies to many other brands. Skip to about 50 seconds in and it explains how to cable them up.

    An Express has 2 DMX ports. One likely goes to your dimmer rack. The other is likely unused. Connect the power supply to the console using a 5-pin DMX-compatible cable and patching can be covered in a separate topic.

    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2013
  6. JChenault

    JChenault Well-Known Member

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    RE how to control the scrollers ( sk8rsdad's Lazy vs fixturePersonality way ). I prefer the lazy way for something as simple as scrollers. A hint I use is to set up groups for the color's I want to scroll to. This lets me quicikly move all of the scrollers to any set of colors I have pre-defined. This is in the category of plan ahead to save time in the theatre.

    Basically you set up a group which consists of the channels just controling the scrollers for the various colors you expect to pick. When programming, simply bring the group up and your scrollers all move to the appropriate level.


    Re hooking up the scrollers. There is one thing I did not see covered in the video. You don't say what brand scroller you are using - so I will be generic. There are two general schemes to powering up your scrollers.

    One is to have a power supply with multiple 4 pin connectors. With this kind of equipment you set up your DMX cables in a daisy chain ( IE the DMX goes to your first power supply, then from from your first power supply to your second, etc). The cables from the power supply to the scroller is in a star configuration. IE you run a single cable from the power supply to the scroller. Scrollers using this scheme will have a single 4 pin input jack on them.

    The second ( more common) way is to have a power supply with a single 4 pin jack, and you daisy chain the cable from the power supply to the first scroller, to the second scroller, etc up to the maximum the power supply can handle. Typically you also run a cable from the final scroller back to the power supply. Scrollers of this type have two 4 pin jacks ( a male and a female) on them. Typically you want to connect the last scroller in the chain back to the power supply so you have a connected ring of cable from the power supply, through all the scrollers, back to the power supply. ( Read the manufactures instructions to see if this is needed for your scrollers).
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2011
    gregeye and (deleted member) like this.
  7. derekleffew

    derekleffew Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    More advanced programmers will use focus points rather than groups. They are similar, but focus points are referenced data, meaning that if you change the levels in the focus point, all the cues based on those will automatically change as well. See the Express' User Manual.
  8. xander

    xander Active Member

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    FP are great! But you only get 99 of them. So, if you are using them for anything else (such as position palettes) they will run out fast and may be more useful elsewhere... But, if you are only doing color scrollers, yea, go for it!

    My $.02
    -Tim
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2011
    gregeye and (deleted member) like this.

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