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MAC 250+

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by iandy, Mar 3, 2008.

  1. iandy

    iandy Member

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    Hey, I think this is my first post on here! So Hello all!

    Right i need some help on a few things regarding the MAC 250+ (also keep in mind I am working in London England, so not sure if that makes any differnence.

    I have used the MAC (250+ and 500) but we are getting two MAC 250+ on the next production - 3 weeks. I was wondering if someone wouldnt mind being a MAC 250+ for dummies tutor for me :)

    I work on the Strand 300 desk, so i someone wouldnt mind messaging me to start a convo that would be brill.

    Thanks
     
  2. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    The thing I remember about the 250+ is that it had indexable gobos. It also may or may not have a regular 16 bit mode and an extended mode, which gives you access to a few things not in the 16 bit mode.

    As for programming it, I'm not a Strand person so I'm no help there.
     
  3. iandy

    iandy Member

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    Ok a few dumb questions, but hey you have to learn some how.

    1. If you daisy chain two MACs together, can you still operatre them seperatly, or do they copy each others moves?

    2. On desks (Stand 300 if possible) can you set up a basic chase with the lantern, or do you have to program lots of differnt ques, and change through them.

    3. If i was to patch them in seperatly one of them will be channel 50.* what would the other one be??

    4. Any help would be great, if anyone knows any userfriendly guidelines or books...

    Cheers
     
  4. icewolf08

    icewolf08 CBMod CB Mods

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    On the 300 moving lights are pretty easy to deal with (compared to other consoles in that price range). First off, make sure that you have a trackball, Strand recommends the Microsoft Intellimouse trackballs, but I know that other work (at least the logitech ones do). Make sure, if you get a trackball that you get one that has a USB to PS/2 adapter, as you can't plug the mouse into the USB ports on the 300. The mouse is super useful as the 300 doesn't have a built in trackball. The Mouse allows you to easily and quickly control pan and tilt of you fixtures. If you get a mouse that also has a scroll wheel and a bunch of buttons you can control other attributes with it, one at a time.

    1. If you daisy chain two MACs together, can you still operatre them seperatly, or do they copy each others moves?
    You can daisy chain the units and as long as you assign them unique DMX addresses they will operate individually. The address is set via the LCD screen and buttons on the side of the fixture. If you are only running one universe of DMX then you need to set the address of the fixtures above the highest number dimmer you have. So, if you last dimmer is 200 then you would set the first MAC to be 201. The second MAC you would have to set to be above the first, I don't know offhand how many channels the 250+ needs, but for this example lets just say that you set the second MAC to address 251. This ensures that none of the control channels for the second fixture overlap the first.

    2. On desks (Stand 300 if possible) can you set up a basic chase with the lantern, or do you have to program lots of differnt ques, and change through them.
    You can set up effects by going into the effects editor on the console Press the "FX" button. Here you can add steps and tell the console what each step will be. Once you write the effect you can load it into a cue or load it into a sub. The 300 also has built in "shape" channels for moving lights. These are pre-programmed movements. When you patch the fixture, you can tell the console to add the shape channels. They work pretty well as long as the fixture is not pointing straight down. When you use the shape channels, the higher you make the level of them the bigger the shape gets.

    3. If i was to patch them in seperatly one of them will be channel 50.* what would the other one be??
    You can patch your fixtures to any channel you want. The whole number channel becomes the intensity followed by attribute channels which are indicated by decimal points. The key is that you need to have the fixture profile for the MAC 250+ in the console, and you may have to write that yourself. To check the fixture library on the 300 hit:
    [MORE] {NOTES DISP} {LOAD FILE} {FIXT. LIB.} (I believe it is load file, it is something like that, can't remember off the top of my head) On the screen you will see a list of fixtures. Scroll through and see of the MAC 250+ is there, if it is, remember what number it is, if not then send me a note and I will tell you how to write the profile, it si just long and detailed to post at the moment.

    As for the actual patching. Lets assume that you addressed the fixtures like my example above. Lets also assume that the profile for the MAC 250+ is number 15 (as described above). So, in the patch screen, to patch the first fixture to channel 50 (like you said) you would hit: 201 [@] 50 {@ FIXT} 15 [*]. That will batch all of the attributes of the fixture to the appropriate channels and put the intensity on channel 50. For the second fixture, if you wanted it to be channel 51 then you would hit: 251 [@] 51 {@ FIXT} 15 [*]. And you would be all set to go.

    4. Any help would be great, if anyone knows any userfriendly guidelines or books...
    The Strand 300 user manual would be invaluable to you, if you don't have it, you can download it from their website. Please feel free to send along further questions. There are a few of us here who work on Strand consoles every day and would be happy to help you out.
     
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  5. iandy

    iandy Member

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    Oh thanks that's brilliant. We do have the trackball and used it once before when hired just one MAC for a show, but the technician before me at work patched it all in before so it was very much just plug and play! But I still feel i haven't done a proper job in programming it! Getting some chases set up would be good, and I have seen those set ones you talked about, I always wondered what they did!

    Thanks again and yes watch this space I will have more questions.

    I have recently updated the fixture library im sure the 250 is in there.

    We have 48 16amp channels then 4 DMX inputs on 4 IWB's. The last mac we ran on channel 50, i don't no why that's what was just done last time!
     
  6. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    One other issue with moving lights, and Martin in particular:

    Sometimes a channel will do things you don't expect so make sure the personality of the fixture is patched correctly in your console. For example, Martin fixtures have reset commands, etc., in the same channel as the intensity or shutter. In the 250+, a dmx value 208 - 217 in the first channel will reset the fixture. If you didn't know and just brought a fader up to 100%, you'll get a weird reaction (i.e., the lamp will shut off). Here's the manual. http://www.martin.com/service/downloadfile.asp?name=UM_MAC250_EN_D.PDF&cat=65 Pay close attention to the dmx characteristics of the channels and you'll save yourself some frustration.
     

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