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Automated Fixtures Busking Movers on an Expression 3

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by willbb123, Apr 23, 2009.

  1. willbb123

    willbb123 Active Member

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    Right now we have an Expression 3, but no movers (dont have the server thing). The only DMX toys we have are color scrollers, and DMX Strobes. I know in less then a year we will be renting movers for a show. I know its going to be a pain to program, but its going to be a singing contest type of show that I will be able to program before the live run.

    Long story short... I was joking around with the electrics crew from a local theater who was loading into our space today. One guy was talking about how he didn't like the model of moving lights they were using. So I sarcastically said, "Well if you really don't like them you can leave them here." There LD then said "Well we do have some movers that we don't use that you could probably borrow if you wanted."

    I'd say 90% of my shows are designing on the fly (we mostly do concerts). I I'm wondering how hard it would be to busk (do it on the fly) on our Expression 3. I have never programmed movers before.

    I don't know what brand/model of movers (We probably would not borrow them, so I wouldn't use movers until later this year). But if you guys could just give me some basic tips. In the off chance we would borrow then, I want to be able to say either, "its gonna be a pain, but I can do it" or "there is no way I can busk movers on our board."

    Thanks guys
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2009
  2. soundman

    soundman Well-Known Member

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    You will not be able to get the flexibility you need out of an expression 3 to busk a show. It is possible to make a few prerecorded looks and bounce between them but to modify them on the fly is a whole different issue.
     
  3. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    It might be possible. I did that on an Obsession/1 once. It was kinda fun in that weird way.
     
  4. willbb123

    willbb123 Active Member

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    Its going to be a challenge, and I'm looking forward to it.

    Right now I think my best option (for busking) will be get a DMX to USB dongle and download a good program.
     
  5. soundman

    soundman Well-Known Member

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    That will help but it still wont offer you as many handles as you would want. The fan favorite around here is Chamsys Magic Q and its a pretty good desk for live events. If you were able to get a wing for it you would really have something then. Ideally you would have the handles offered by the expression 3 and by able to program it like the Magic Q.

    I do know if you are near a PRG branch you can get a pretty good deal on renting some MagicQ hardware.
     
  6. akalight

    akalight Member

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    The Expression 3 is a stab at an automated board for ETC. You can address your intelligent fixtures with a DMX address and use the matching channels on the board. Depending on the type of channels on the fixture the channels will match up in the DMX universes.

    I know it sounds hard, but I generally start a new fixture of 16 channels on a new line of channel rows. thusly it makes it easier to find the pan/tilt and colour and such with easy reference.

    But back to your automation and focus points, the EXP3 has the ability to record up to 99 focus points (which are translated for each fixture) that should solve your locations problems. Thus allowing you to create basic looks. Basically you take every fixture, aim it at a point on the stage and record the focus point. much like a WHOLE HOG preset location.

    The board will also allow you to create fixtures and call them up using the fixture button.

    An example of using the board to move a fixture to a focus point would be like this

    Fixture, 1, Focus Point, 1, enter.

    That would send fixture 1 to focus point 1

    this also works for the colour wheels. You can select your fixture and use the wheel to choose your colour or gobo.

    Expression should have a fixture library, if that fixture does not exist then the makers website should have a library for you to download.

    I've worked on a ship that was an expression 2, we upgraded the software to an expression 3 and controlled 36 moving lights, colour scroller and all the dimming channels. Used about 400 DMX channels.

    seems like alot, but it will become second nature to you.

    Good luck.
     
  7. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    I have busked a 120k rig with some mac250's and technos before on my magicQ without a wing. Its doable if you make your stacks right. You have hard playback keys on the keyboard when it is in "playback" mode. Its actually pretty decent. Now, I would have loved to have had a wing, but it was much better then using the exp 3 that I set up on top of.
     

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