Chauvet 4D Hazer Problem

akhracer

Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2017
Location
Bedford, IN
We have a couple of the Chauvet Hurricane Hazers. I'm having a weird issue and looking for ideas. The quick problem is that they lose DMX. They will be on, DMX engaged, all working fine, and then randomly the DMX channel starts flashing on the units and they quit working until a power cycle or channel reset.
2 units, SR and SL. Same DMX address. They are on their own universe (on channel 15 (so fan 15 and haze 16).

Soooo... I assumed cable issue the first time it happened. Changed out the DMX cable on the input. Same problem returned. Put a terminator on the 2nd unit. Same problem returned. Changed the DMX cable out between units. Same problem.
Swapped the SR and SL units around, moved the terminator to the last unit (since it was the first unit in the chain). Worked fine for the rest of the day and thru the show.

I marked the original that was on the end so as to know everything worked with it at the end of the chain and for future troubleshooting. Tried it again... this past weekend and same issue. Different console(s), different DMX cables, etc... the only common denominator is the two 4D hazers.

I wasn't there this past weekend but if I understand correctly, unlike what happened with me where the problem happened in sync, in this case one would lose signal but not necessarily the other, but eventually both did lose DMX signal.

I suppose if the IN/OUT are just parallel that if one is spewing bad data it wouldn't matter if it's first or last in line.

So any suggestions what to look for... anything to try... fix... replace?
 

RonHebbard

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2004
Location
Waterdown, ON, CA
We have a couple of the Chauvet Hurricane Hazers. I'm having a weird issue and looking for ideas. The quick problem is that they lose DMX. They will be on, DMX engaged, all working fine, and then randomly the DMX channel starts flashing on the units and they quit working until a power cycle or channel reset.
2 units, SR and SL. Same DMX address. They are on their own universe (on channel 15 (so fan 15 and haze 16).

Soooo... I assumed cable issue the first time it happened. Changed out the DMX cable on the input. Same problem returned. Put a terminator on the 2nd unit. Same problem returned. Changed the DMX cable out between units. Same problem.
Swapped the SR and SL units around, moved the terminator to the last unit (since it was the first unit in the chain). Worked fine for the rest of the day and thru the show.

I marked the original that was on the end so as to know everything worked with it at the end of the chain and for future troubleshooting. Tried it again... this past weekend and same issue. Different console(s), different DMX cables, etc... the only common denominator is the two 4D hazers.

I wasn't there this past weekend but if I understand correctly, unlike what happened with me where the problem happened in sync, in this case one would lose signal but not necessarily the other, but eventually both did lose DMX signal.

I suppose if the IN/OUT are just parallel that if one is spewing bad data it wouldn't matter if it's first or last in line.

So any suggestions what to look for... anything to try... fix... replace?
Calling @Ford Can you find a few moments for poster @akhracer
Toodleoo!
Ron Hebbard
 

akhracer

Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2017
Location
Bedford, IN
The service dept seems as confused as I am.
Check for a loose connection or potentially main board problem. I was hoping there was some known issue I could check for. Something that someone has already been down this path. Neither unit has much time on them and they were purchased together.
So, I'm going to have to isolate whether either unit is OK by itself (connected via DMX), and then hopefully find one of them that eventually misbehaves, and then see if it makes the other misbehave when connected together.

Of course if neither misbehaves by itself, then the mystery just deepens...
 

akhracer

Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2017
Location
Bedford, IN
Possibly too fast a DMX rate? What console are you using?
When then problem occurred with me the act was using a GrandMA 2. The next week when it happened, I need to check (I wasn't onsite)... EDIT: I've now checked. The 2nd week it was a Chamsys MQ80 (with a wing).
Earlier in the week they were using an AVO wing (Titan) at the festival and that tech had no issues with the hazers. It was only on Saturday with the main act and switching to their console that this problem occurred (for the 2nd known time).
Ultimately, they switched over to a completely different Hazer (different brand even), put it on his channel, and had no more issues.
So the only obvious common denominator is the Chauvet 4D Hazers so far....


I pulled one of the hazers to test by itself to see if could isolate one or the other as having a problem. One thing I noticed is when I disconnect the DMX cable the LED readout changes to show manual haze reading (H=0). When I was onsite and I noticed this problem a couple of weeks back, when it occurred the readout would flash on both units but would still show the DMX address. But instead of being solid as normal under DMX use, it would be flashing. Once reset, it would quit flashing and work properly, until it did it again. At the time I thought that meant loss of DMX, but it appears that is not what a flashing LED readout with the channel is showing me. At least judging by this one that I have uncased. It should've defaulted to show the manual settings judging by this one.

Nothing in the Chauvet manual tells me what a flashing LED readout showing the DMX address indicates though. (Apparently that is a fluid sensor issue, but a fluid issue appearing simultaneously in 2 filled hazers isn't likely to be a real issue itself). Errant data somehow on the line?

Edit: I should add I'm testing on a computer loaded with Chamsys Magic Q.
 
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akhracer

Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2017
Location
Bedford, IN
Did this ever get figured out? Ours is doing it too. Is the solution to toss it and get something else?
Yes and no... I had some strange internet suggestions that I tried... and a theory... Because- "What did I have to lose?" and so far the problem hasn't returned.
For one thing it was suggested not to use higher DMX channels. I don't know why... but I changed the channels to double digits in the range suggested. Someone had said their's was on 60.
So, I set our's on 57 for SR and 59 for SL (and so nothing was above that channel 60 number since they are 2 channel units). We'd been lower, and we'd been much higher.
I wasn't sure if having them on the same channel allowed them to send data to each other, or more importantly, errant data, so I just separated their addresses while I was readdressing them to remove that possibility.

I believe since doing this, they've been on Chamsys, an Avo Titan mobile, and an Avo Pearl... and the issue hasn't returned. I don't believe anyone has brought in an MA again so I have no way to test if there's anything MA specific going on.
But it had the problem with the other consoles before and not just MA.

As far as testing goes... I looked internally for bad wiring... issues with the hoses... DMX cables... etc.... Ultimately, all that stuff passed every test or inspection I put them thru.

So if you have one... try addressing in that range... if you have two (or more), try separating their addresses... I'm curious if that's truly any kind of answer or just coincidence. Please followup.