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Control/Dimming ETC Microvision Monitor help please

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by Keri1983, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. Keri1983

    Keri1983 Member

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    Hi!
    I work at a small theater that still uses an ETC MicroVision FX board. Unfortunately our monitor blew out. I looked at the manual and it just said to use a TTL monitor, and it has a DB9 connector, so I purchased a new one. The new one has some of the lines skewed. The word "Stage" at the top is at a diagnol as is the bottom left corner and some others. Do you have any suggestions as to what I can do?

    Thanks so much
    ~Keri
     
  2. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    From what I remember, the microvision used an old type of VGA output, not SVGA like most monitors currently are. I am sure there is an adapter out there, but I remember many people getting rid of the console not because it died, but because they had a monitor die and could not find an replacement.
     
  3. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    While I'm sure one of our CB members from ETC will stop in and tell you if it's possible to replace the monitor here eventually, the easiest thing to do would be to call ETC and ask them.

    1-800-688-4116
     
    sashapixie and (deleted member) like this.
  4. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    That was probably a standard (at the time) CGA monitor output, right?
     
  5. dramatech

    dramatech Well-Known Member

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    It has been quite a few years ago, but I was working at a location that used a Microvision with a black and white monitor. I found and old color monitor sitting on a shelf in the storage room, but it didn't have the correct connector. I just changed the connector and it worked fine. If my memory serves correctly, It uses a standard color monitor that is used in a Television control room, or in other words, one that is scanning at 525 lines 60 hz. Those monitors have seperate inputs for Red Green and Blue with an option of having the sync on a separate input or composite on the green signal. I believe that the monitor must be set for sync on the green. What you are describing sounds like you either are missing the sync, or the horizontal frequency is slightly off. This is adjustable in the monitor, but not the sort of thing that and unqualified person should be trying. I worked in Television for twenty years before I moved to theatre, and so it was not a big deal to adapt a monitor to work with the Microvision. Quite the opposite, it would be much harder for me to deal with the new computer monitors used on the newer model lighting consoles. See If you can't get some advice from a TV repair shop, as the Monitor is much more a TV monitor than it is a computer monitor.
     
  6. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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  7. SteveB

    SteveB Well-Known Member

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    MV supported a color CGA as well.

    If you find yourself needing to buy a replacement, then best bet is to call Steve Short at Litetrol Service - 800 548 3876. They have all sorts of monitors for older consoles.

    Or maybe Frank Danko at Lights Up in W Hempstead, NY (LI) 1 516 505 3900. I noticed today while we were looking thru their computer data base of consoles, that they still listed MV's, Expression II and Insight II all of which I believe used the same monitors, and it would not surprise me if they were willing to sell used.

    Steve B.
     
  8. Keri1983

    Keri1983 Member

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    Thank you all for your help!
    Since I already bought a new monitor, does anyone have any suggestions for getting that one to work?
    The irony is that we used to have a spare which was salvaged from an old DMV office, but it got thrown out accidentally. I'm sure there must be a way to get the one we have now to work.
    I might also try contacting the place in Hempstead since I'm working near there tomorrow.
    Thanks again!
    ~Keri
     
  9. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    I'm assuming you've already diddled with the front-panel controls, specifically:

    • V-size
    • H-phase
    • Focus
    As [user]dramatech[/user] said, there are probably internal adjustments as well, but these should only be done by an experienced TV/CRT technician.

    I vaguely recall one instance where I had to squash the vertical more than I would have liked, in order to get a readable screen.
     
  10. SteveB

    SteveB Well-Known Member

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    Ah - brings back lost memories.

    Check somewhere in the setup screen for a soft switch to swap from monochrome to color, or vice versa for whatever looks correct. I'm still pretty certain a modern VGA monitor will not work though.

    SB
     
  11. DavidNorth

    DavidNorth ETC Rigging General Manager Premium Member Fight Leukemia Departed Member

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    Sorry for taking so long to respond....been out on the road.

    ETC has used monitors for sale but they are not cheap. Call us to find out more.

    Also, I recently have been playing with some CGA to VGA converters. A couple of people are using these to run to LCD monitors. Some of them look good and some do not. The one we have the best success with is found here:

    Video Converters - RGB / CGA to VGA Converter PCB - JAMMABOARDS.COM - JAMMA Coin-Op Arcade Game Parts - ACV-011 RGB / CGA to VGA Converter

    Unfortunately you will have to mount it in a box and set the DIP switches correctly. I have that info back at the shop and can make it available next week. The DIP settings for MVSN/MVFX are slightly different than EXPN, etc.

    If anyone one wants this info directly, please email me at dnorth (at) etcconnect (dot) com,

    David
    ETC
     
  12. Keri1983

    Keri1983 Member

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    Hi!
    I did play with the adjustment knobs, if I knew where to go inside to fiddle with things I would. :-/

    This is what the monitor screen looks like now.
    [media]http://www.focusthat.com/microvision.jpg[/media]
    It's a terrible quality pic, sorry.

    If I were to try to change the plug on this db9 connector to another db9, any suggestions on what pins to switch?

    I had a db9 to VGA converter and it didn't work: Some of the screen was readable but what should have been on the left of the screen was on the right. It was strange.

    I have no problem using composite video from the BNC. How would I do that? Would I need a BNC monitor? Could I convert DB9 to BNC? Searching for BNC monitors online was somehow worse than searching for db9 TTL monochrome.

    Thanks!
    ~Keri
     
  13. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    They're easy to find. Some names are Ikegami (Icky), Panasonic, and Sony. On Ebay, look under Cameras-Photo > Pro Video > Monitors (or something like that). There should be tons of 9" throwdowns out there.
     
  14. SteveB

    SteveB Well-Known Member

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    Hve you tried setting the switch in the setup section from Color to Monochrome ?.

    SB
     
  15. Keri1983

    Keri1983 Member

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    That's great!
    Do you think that any b&W monitor with a BNC connector would work?

    Thanks!
     
  16. icewolf08

    icewolf08 CBMod CB Mods

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    In theory, you could even take any TV with a composite video input and pick up a BNC to RCA adapter and use that.
     
  17. Sony

    Sony Active Member

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    As David North has suggested...I also have been using a CGA to VGA Converter Board on our Microvision FX at MVPAC. It works great! When we use it we plug it into a nice 15" LCD Monitor.

    We use this one

    Cherry Master Arcade CGA RGB to VGA Video Converter - eBay (item 260356033037 end time Mar-03-09 21:07:26 PST)

    MUCH Cheaper and easier than trying to go out and find an old CGA Monitor. All you need is this board, a Male DB9 connector from Radio Shack, a 12vDC Power supply and some basic soldering skills and you're all set. I got mine working in a matter of about 30 minutes...the most time consuming part was soldering the DB9 Connector.
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2009
  18. DavidNorth

    DavidNorth ETC Rigging General Manager Premium Member Fight Leukemia Departed Member

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    Sony,

    Looks like the same board I bought but for even cheaper.

    Please find attached a quick doc that shows connector wiring and DIP switch settings for different consoles. Just got word back from another person out there running the same card with a large amount of success.

    It would be nice to get that space-hog CRT off the counter, use a more portable LCD, and stop that incessant monitor high frequency whine. I swear I can hear it from across the hall when the repair guys turn one on now.....or maybe too many local calls on rock shows.

    David
     

    Attached Files:

  19. ScottH

    ScottH Member

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    I think icewolf has the best suggestion and i can verify that this works. In a pinch you can even hook it up to a VCR + TV setup and make this work. Radioshack should have BNC to RCA video adapters readily available. Then you just need a monitor with a video input (rca). Old studio monitors work great or even a small TV with an aux input will do the trick.
     
  20. Keri1983

    Keri1983 Member

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    Just a follow up.

    I did end up getting the BNC to RCA connector and stealing a TV from the theaters security system (don't worry, I gave it back). It works great!! It's not as clear as a monitor would be but it works and it was $6. We returned the other monitor that didn't work.

    You guys rock!
    ~Keri
     

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