Agree with this generally (and is what I myself have stated prior), but as per the OP "The console only needs to be able to control 40-60 individual channels (all just regular old dimmers), and 10 submasters would be more than enough for the venue. We don't cue or anything in there, and we have other consoles that we bring in on the rare occasion we need more control capabilities."ETC Express was fantastic for it's time but don't spend that much money on 20 year old technology, even if ETC will continue to fix it. The time of recommending buying an Express has passed. If you can find someone to give you one, or pick one up for a couple hundred bucks great. But spending $3000 on an Express at this point is insane. Especially when you consider how much more power you can get in a Pathway Cognito for about the same price.
Err - this is only the first response if someone says 'a PC solution is not simple'. Choosing the right control system for your lighting depends on a number of factors. I would argue that for many users a well designed PC system is simpler to use and program than just about anything else out there. ( I am of course biased ). I was trying to understand why you thought differently.I'm interested that this is inevitably the first response to someone when they mention they're not looking for a PC solution.
I did not suggest a ChamSys as it is NOT simple.So I hook them up with ChamSys, free software, cheap dongle. Except I'm supposed to buy a standalone computer to run that if it's show critical, right? And since I said they want physical control (they're used to sliders, they want sliders), I need one of the interfaces for that. The cheapest one is around $1,000, if google is right. Since this is for a school, if they have a question about the light board, they're gonna call IT instead of me because all they see is a computer. Then we've got IT on our case because they don't understand why we've installed software they haven't approved and whatever else they can gripe about.
If I'm gonna spend around 1k, I feel like I might as well get a standalone board out of it, even if it's not shiny and new. That was my reasoning, sorry if this comes off as rude, I don't intend for it to. But it is a little frustrating to have to defend why you want a regular board - haven't we done it that way for decades?
One of the reasons we were frustrated with what was out there for computerized consoles was that when you walked up to one on a trade show floor, you could not figure out how to turn on a light.I have been an IT guy for 30 years, and a production guy for at least 20, and I am right there to say that a computerized lighting control board has a higher and possibly substantially higher inherent complexity level. Maybe not from the board operators' standpoint, but that isn't the only standpoint.
There are at least an order of magnitude more knobs people can inadvertently move to break things on a computerized console, even if they're not supposed to.
So I'm not at all surprised myself to hear that the OP thought that.
Computerized consoles, for me, have the same relationship to traditional two-scene or stack-preset consoles, that most digital audio boards have to analog ones you can't just sit down and run them, you have to learn them first.
Okay, sure there's a little bit you have to learn to run a smartfade, for example, but that took me 15 minutes?
Sent from my SPH-L720
Hi Rick,Welcome to Controlbooth!
I'm curious; 24 channels with 10 LEDs? Most LEDs have at least 4 channels and often 8-12, but can be dumbed down to 3. That's 30, 14! Are you running all your LEDs together or are you counting 10+14 to get 24?
One of the cheapest things around is http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/682793-REG/Elation_Control_SCENE_SETTER_48_Scene_Setter_48_DMX.html
This is not what I recommend, but fits your request.
Seems like the Ion would fit nicely if you want to stay with ETC.HI Everyone - I need some advice on a console. I am the theatre manager/tech director/ lighting designer at a very active and arts based high school. We currently have an ETC Element that I bought for us three years ago. At the time, I did not see that the LED and moving light market would come down in price the way it has to the point where we have now been able to purchase some. I'm looking to upgrade our other theatre, which is smaller and less complicated productions, with the Element moving to there and then a different board in the main theatre. So here it is and I'm looking for advice on what might fit us best. I would sort of like to stay with ETC, but it's not necessary.
2 sets of 9 LED Wash Lights
8 LED lights for Cycs
4 Moving Lights
We are looking to possibly add more lights, especially a few more moving lights.
Our budget is definitely under $15,000, but I would rather it be under $10,000