I have not heard back from the techs yet at Elation but I addressed two issues with the fairly expensive (out of the lower end boards) Show Designer 3 Console. I wanted to see if anyone else has this console and if they have run into similar issues when it comes to "on the fly" playback. Can anyone let me know if I am doing something wrong and this board can actually do what I am trying to do. I am more of a live dance music lighting guy as opposed to stage and theatre so I am wonder if the design of the console was made for theatre where everything is usually preprogrammed but I would still think you would need the features I am having problems with (listed below) from time to time. (this is what I sent to the Elation guys) : I was able to thoroughly work with the Show Designer 3 this weekend past and have come up with what I feel is valuble feeback for you. Do you have input into the research and developement process? If not, I would highly suggest that this info is directed towards the individuals that have the power to make changes in the functionality and future updates of this board. I have worked with many many boards in the past 15 years and this board contains some features of some of the very high end boards but it has a counter-productive offset mixed within it's architecture. These two issues that I am about to explain are so large in importance that we are contemplating selling the board because of it's lack of capability to do these two functions. It is literally two of the most important functions (in my opinion) when controlling a nightclub "live" environment. Furthermore, I think it can make the difference between selling a lot more boards for the nightclub application when consumers are debating between products such as a hardware console or software like Showpro or Light Jockey. The issues : (A) NO FIXTURE RELEASE COMMAND : When you are working on a live show and the lights are moving, attributes are changing, and you have this cool sequence running......You grab control of a fixture and position it to highlight someone on the dancefloor. All the other lights are still running the sequence. Now, you can not release the fixture you grabbed and it is stuck under your control until you restart the sequence which in many cases is too abrubt. No matter what changes you make to any amount of fixtures while a sequence is playing back, you should be able to hit a command that releases all the changes and movements you altered, back to the programmed running sequence(s) state. What good is a light that is no longer moving around the dance floor while all the others are playing back? When the fixture is deselected, it should simply revert back to it's preprogrammed state and release any attribute that you changed on the fly (unless ofcourse you record it before deslecting it) (B) PRESETS CONFLICT BETWEEN FIXUTRES WITH "SAME" ATTRIBUTES : This is the worse of the two issues. Let's say I have 20 color change fixtures (this issue can happen with any attribute). I have presets recorded in which simply adjust the color channels. I have included all the fixutres when making the preset. Button 1: Red Button 2: Green Button 3: Blue Now, I play back the fixtures and turn 10 of them on blue and 10 of them on red. Lets say they are moving heads as well, so they are spinning around and lighting up my dancefloor. In a club situation, the light guy is workiing on the fly with the DJ to compliment his music with the proper colors. I want to change the red fixtures to blue and also the blue fixtures to red (swap them). I select the red fixtures only and then tap the preset page button....Now the problem appears......the BLUE preset is already lit up because some fixtures are already blue. So you can NOT change the red fixtures to blue using the blue preset button even though I only have the RED fixtures selected. Since the blue is already lit up, hitting it can not turn it ON since it is already ON. Instead, hitting the BLUE preset button turns off the blue preset, thus shutting off the fixtures that were already blue (even though they are not selected) and the red fixtures stay red because I just turned OFF blue. Now, when I hit blue again..the red fixtures I have selected will turn BLUE and the fixtures that were blue simply stay OFF because they are not selected. The only work around is to use the same scenerio except use the jog wheels to rotate the blue channel on and the red channel off, then do the opposite after selecting the other fixtures. THat will just not work in a live environment where everything is happening on the fly and changes you being made extremely quickly. In order for this problem to be corrected, the board would have to know to shut the preset off when fixtures are selected that DO NOT use that attribute. SO when I select ONLY the red fixtures and then go back to the preset pages, the blue preset will not be lit (even though some fixtures are using the BLUE preset(unselected ones)). This way, I can now hit blue and turn my red fixtures to blue without shutting off the already blue fixtures. A board that addresses these issues very well is the NSI MLC-16 and could perhaps be a board to look at and copy some of it's architecture. The Show Designer is much more capable and fuller featured but the NSI has the leading edge (at more than half the price) in the "nightclub" application architecture. I really like the board and hope that these issues are considered serious enough to address. It seems as though it should be a firmware issue and something that can be changed with a chip update of firmware upload. I can easily see changing the protocol so that one function of the "BACK" button could be to release the fixtures as explained in the first issue. As for the other issue, it just needs to know to deselect the presets when fixtures are selected that do not use that preset trait. Not deactivate the preset (since other fixtures are using it), just deselect it so it can be reused for the newly selected fixtures (which are not already using it) I'll give you a call to talk about this and see if this is serious enough to have it put on the R & D team's plate of things to have a meeting about. For now, I don't want to sell the board if I think there may be a fix down the road, but if your team thinks it is not an issue to deal with for this particular console model, then the board will ultimately serve me no purpose for club application.