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ETC Color Source bode rate

ship

Senior Team Emeritus
Premium Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2003
Location
Illinois
Saw today in controlling some individual LED lamps by way of a LED/DMX Decoder, that the light board ETC Color Source was the problem in each time plugged into the decoder, the decoder would shut down. This either by way of fixture menue in not having a LED tape decoder with a specific bode rate for which it would work with, or in general as with other light boards you can slow down communications to the extent the other gear worked.

Not the first time a light or hoist won't work with a light board due to data speed.

Glad we found this detail out two weeks before two projects in R&D amongst other projects got installed and didn't work. Upgrade in decoders installed for the light board, and DMX speed adustable on the light board?


Granted this Color source light board is the first I am learning since Kliegl Performer II, Strand Lite Pallet III, Q-File and my favorate ETC v.1 Vision... I'm learning again, but in my case given I mostly deal with LED' nodes or tape and not fixtures... this is a problem with the light board I think which needs an upgrade.
 
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Amiers

Renting to Corporate One Fixture at a Time.
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May 28, 2009
Location
Phoenix, Az
Lovely, you posted this now after we bought a ton of chinese led fixtures, I fought very much against them, and they bought CS20s to control all of them.
 

JohnD

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north central OK
Not to be a semantic twit, but should the word 'bode' actually be 'baud', it is also quite possible that bode is the correct word and I'm showing my ignorance.;)
 

TimMc

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2017
DMX has a specified data rate (baud, since you remember the old acoustic modems, ;) ) and if it's not that rate, it's not DMX, just serial data. The problem isn't the DMX-compliant console, the problem is the fixture/lights are not DMX compliant. I'd argue that wrong product was specified, or the interface boxes do not work as advertised.
 

derekleffew

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Las Vegas, NV, USA
https://www.controlbooth.com/threads/memory-lighting-control-systems-history.9203/ says ETC Vision debuted in 1985, though if yours has a jack labelled "DMX512" that would have to indicate 1986 or later, no?
-----
... this is a problem with the light board I think which needs an upgrade.
So there's a problem between either:
A console from a major, respected manufacturer for forty years, who actually has writers of the original DMX512 specification on its staff,
OR
A generic, no-name Chinese importer.
And you first suspect the former.

You may need a http://www.dfd.com/dmxdecel.html to "fix" the ETC problem, or, as we learned in this thread https://www.controlbooth.com/threads/dmx-refresh-flash-on-cheaper-leds.46193/, you may need to disable RDM.
 
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microstar

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Jan 19, 2014
Location
Lawton, OK
https://www.controlbooth.com/threads/memory-lighting-control-systems-history.9203/ says ETC Vision debuted in 1985, though if yours has a jack labelled "DMX512" that would have to indicate 1986 or later, no?
-----
So there's a problem between either:
A console from a major, respected manufacturer for forty years, who actually has writers of the original DMX512 specification on its staff,
OR
A generic, no-name Chinese importer.
And you first suspect the former.

You may need a http://www.dfd.com/dmxdecel.html to "fix" the ETC problem, or, as we learned in this thread https://www.controlbooth.com/threads/dmx-refresh-flash-on-cheaper-leds.46193/, you may need to disable RDM.
I just checked one of my Vision consoles and it looks like it was manufactured in 1987 if the 051387 part of the serial number has any bearing on it. It does have a verified 5-pin XLR DMX output.
Guess I should have said "late 1980's". Good catch!
 

RickR

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Joined
Sep 18, 2009
Location
Spokane, WA the great "Inland Northwest"
While we're being pedantic;
DMX512 has inherently variable timing and therefore does not have a specific baud rate. The documentation is full of "at least" and "not to exceed" statements. Breaking either boundary can break communication.

Most folks skip baud, and focus on the refresh rate, how many whole packets per second. That's where we see 25- 44hz numbers.

But most often I see other issues causing problems. RDM issues are usually the fixture not liking alternate start codes. Bad cables and/or termination. Ground loops in the shield or just ungrounded consoles.

Doug Fleenor recently made a pretty bold offer to fix systems for free. But if the standard was violated then you pay his costs. Ask him for the details :legalstuff:
 

DrewE

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Joined
Mar 18, 2019
Location
Vermont
While we're being pedantic;
DMX512 has inherently variable timing and therefore does not have a specific baud rate. The documentation is full of "at least" and "not to exceed" statements. Breaking either boundary can break communication.

Most folks skip baud, and focus on the refresh rate, how many whole packets per second. That's where we see 25- 44hz numbers.
DMX512 very much has a standardized baud rate of 250 kb/s (the specification does allow for an error of +/- 5 kb/s, or +/- 2% to put it another way); indeed, it is impossible to have anything like a standard asynchronous serial data connection without agreeing upon a particular baud rate and adhering to it within a few percent. Where the standard does allow a lot of leeway and variability in timing are between the bytes within a packet, the time between packets, and the details of the start-of-packet break length.

It is true that most folks skip the baud rate, I suspect mainly because it's inherently fixed by the specification. Similarly, people tend not to worry much about the physical signaling voltage levels (which follow the standard RS-485 differential signaling requirements) for much the same reason.
 

Jay Ashworth

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Joined
Feb 7, 2014
Location
St Pete FL USA
Baud rate is the symbol rate, and, as Drew notes, is expected to hit a specific target in DMX.

There are self-clocking protocols, which can run all the way down to 0, but I don't think DMX is one, at Layer 1.
 

ship

Senior Team Emeritus
Premium Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2003
Location
Illinois
Sorry if confusion on my part, Tried first with DMXter (shop built DMX controller), worked fine. Didn't work with the more modern cell phone type widgit or light board in question. Did shut off the RDM. (The other elder light boards were referenced to past experience on light boards with light boards = not to the current ones tried.) Tried an optosplitter also to clean up signal - not totally ignorant in concept. Than another light board where we could dial down the speed.

Problem for me was these are LED tape decoders normal to any LED tape supplier.... been using them for years with all kids of name your high profile light board and show. Never had a problem before where the decoder shut down. Swapping out decoder didn't fix it. Gear worked with other light boards and after fixing, was told about problems with some lights and hoists on some controllers thus the baud rate in not being able to dial in. Just interesting note on my part in somewhat understanding what happened... More so to be aware of as I am now, in never happened over say the past +10 years of doing such things.
 

RonHebbard

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Jun 12, 2004
Location
Waterdown, ON, CA
Sorry if confusion on my part, Tried first with DMXter (shop built DMX controller), worked fine. Didn't work with the more modern cell phone type widgit or light board in question. Did shut off the RDM. (The other elder light boards were referenced to past experience on light boards with light boards = not to the current ones tried.) Tried an optosplitter also to clean up signal - not totally ignorant in concept. Than another light board where we could dial down the speed.

Problem for me was these are LED tape decoders normal to any LED tape supplier.... been using them for years with all kids of name your high profile light board and show. Never had a problem before where the decoder shut down. Swapping out decoder didn't fix it. Gear worked with other light boards and after fixing, was told about problems with some lights and hoists on some controllers thus the baud rate in not being able to dial in. Just interesting note on my part in somewhat understanding what happened... More so to be aware of as I am now, in never happened over say the past +10 years of doing such things.
@ship You're worrying me when you mention hoists and DMX in the same sentence.
@FMEng @Ancient Engineer @TimMc @egilson1 @What Rigger? @sk8rsdad @Amiers @anybody else
Comments, thoughts, et al regarding DMX and control of hoists???
Toodleoo!
Ron Hebbard
 
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EdSavoie

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Joined
Oct 19, 2016
Location
Windsor, ON, Canada
Assuming there isn't any kind of signal issue between the console and your decoder, the issue is almost certainly the decoder not adhering to the complete timing range standardized in DMX-512.

The ETC boards I've run into from the express to the colorsource all seem to try outputting at the faster end of DMX. You can probably fix it by dropping speed to the "Medium" setting, which should change the refresh rate to about 30Hz or so.

You're looking for "Settings: Console: Speed"


Side note: Can you please define what you mean by "hoist" in the context of DMX?