Console universe capacities

RickR

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2009
Location
Spokane, WA the great "Inland Northwest"
Can some of you console gurus fill me in on an odd situation?

A touring LD brough his GrandMA to a multi-venue site where all the house fixtures were put in Universe 300+ and he couldn't control them. :confused: I wasn't around for the previous nights Hog issues, but it might have been the same thing. (For those keeping score, we dropped all the gateways down to a normal range and didn't need the dimmers. :dance: )

This 300 stuff was done for good and sound, but old reasons. The house Ion consoles use a sACN start of 300 so it just looks like U1, 2, 3, etc. (no pun intended) They really are just now moving into network control of the house gear, and lots of new fixtures! :):) The best the GMA could do was up to U256. I'm aware that ArtNet was once restricted to 256, but was very surprised by the limit. :wall:
  • Is there a real limit on a significant number of consoles?
  • Is this only a range limit (any 256 you like)? The show had media stuff in low universes.
  • Is this a price issue, they didn't pay enough? Remote processors, added licenses, etc.
  • Is this a LD knowledge issue? I'm no Hog/ GMA wiz, but I hope some you are!
The ultimate question is whether the site should re-universe their system.
 

RonaldBeal

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2004
Location
TN
LD Knowledge issue.

To address above Artnet universe 256, you have to change the "Network" number in protocol entry on the network protocol page.

The MA2 can address to universe 32,768.

More info about the middle of the page of this link:
https://help2.malighting.com/Page/grandMA2/network_dmx_protocols/en/3.3

The MA2 systems are parameter limited... the processors can only process so much data. The system can be expanded by adding NPU's.

A chart of the MA's parameter counts and expansions is here:
https://help2.malighting.com/Page/grandMA2/so_parameter_expansion/en/3.3

Most consoles have a channel or parameter limit due to processor constraints.


RB


Can some of you console gurus fill me in on an odd situation?

A touring LD brough his GrandMA to a multi-venue site where all the house fixtures were put in Universe 300+ and he couldn't control them. :confused: I wasn't around for the previous nights Hog issues, but it might have been the same thing. (For those keeping score, we dropped all the gateways down to a normal range and didn't need the dimmers. :dance: )

This 300 stuff was done for good and sound, but old reasons. The house Ion consoles use a sACN start of 300 so it just looks like U1, 2, 3, etc. (no pun intended) They really are just now moving into network control of the house gear, and lots of new fixtures! :):) The best the GMA could do was up to U256. I'm aware that ArtNet was once restricted to 256, but was very surprised by the limit. :wall:
  • Is there a real limit on a significant number of consoles?
  • Is this only a range limit (any 256 you like)? The show had media stuff in low universes.
  • Is this a price issue, they didn't pay enough? Remote processors, added licenses, etc.
  • Is this a LD knowledge issue? I'm no Hog/ GMA wiz, but I hope some you are!
The ultimate question is whether the site should re-universe their system.
 
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DavidJones

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2017
Location
Touring
I think this is operator error. MA Licenses "Parameters", but puts no limits on "channels" or universes. Basically, Pan, Tilt, Red, gobo 1, are each ONE parameter and being 16 or even 24-bit parameters(taking up 2-3 DMX slots) does not count against you, it's still just one. MA states that 256 is the maximum number of universes for one MA2 session, but they don't limit what universe numbers you use.
A surprising number if operators/LDs have large knowledge gaps in the finer workings of consoles, and lighting networks in general. There is a lot to know about each system and console.
 

DavidJones

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2017
Location
Touring
Sorry, I've been out of touch.

All sACN no artnet involved.

I agree it's likely a knowledge issue. The biggest argument against that is: 2 traveling LDs on 2 different consoles with the same problem.
Sooo... I know this is a kind of old thread, but the deal with MA is that it can send on sACN universes 1-64,000. The issue is that when you configure your outputs it limits you to blocks of 256, per "output." If the tour was using say universe 1-20 for their rig, they could not access universe 300 with that one output configuration. However, they simply need to click the "add" button can configure another output line of just one universe(or however many the house rig needs) and start that output at the universe 300. Here is a screenshot of what needs to be done.

Look at the "amount" tab as well, as many have advised against sending tons of unnecessary universes full of zeros, that just go nowhere, but the switch has to deal with, or possibly all nodes have to take time to look at and then ignore. In this case, even though I am using up to universe 300, I am only sending 21 universes to the network.
 

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DavidJones

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2017
Location
Touring
Personally, I'd just mover everything down to the first 256 if possible. Saves you from having to teach a bunch of touring LDs how to use their consoles on every show. The last thing I want to get into is explaining networking to people.
 

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