Mounting Moving Heads

sk8rsdad

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It doesn't matter. Being consistent is more important.
  • facing downstage may mean the display is visible to the audience and from the booth. Most fixtures have a setting to turn off the display.
  • facing upstage may be more convenient for pre-show inspection.
  • facing upstage may be less distracting to the audience if a display starts flashing an error code in the middle of the show.
  • the natural home position of the fixture might prefer one or the other but most consoles and fixtures have settings to invert tilt and/or pan to compensate.
  • facing upstage might make cabling more consistent with conventionals since the power and data connections are often on the opposite side from the display.
 
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cbrandt

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Many fixtures will have a "correct" orientation. It is often printed on the bottom of the fixture with an arrow or a phrase. But as @sk8rsdad has said, consistency is more important.
 

RonaldBeal

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Jan 24, 2004
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Depends on the fixture... As long as there is a menu/display timeout, I personally do displays downstage (if there is no orientation arrow) that way I can see from DSC when the rig powers on if there are errors, etc. Keeps the cable mess less visible. Otherwise I base it on the orientation arrow
 
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derekleffew

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As best I can recall, Martin is the only mfg. whose lights have arrows, and they state "Arrow toward object being lighted." FWIW. I don't agree with this at all, as it means frontlights are backwards from backlights.
I'm surprised this doesn't come up more often, as it can really wreck havoc (although somewhat easily overcome) when actualizing a pre-viz.
 

jtweigandt

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Moline Il
I've mounted ours right side up upside down, with the display forward and back.
If you really want to confuse the hell out of yourself mount one sideways..

Was it Apollo 13? "Pitch becomes Yaw.. Astronauts are smart"
 

cbrandt

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If you really want to confuse the hell out of yourself mount one sideways..
You say that but... The Robe Colorspot/Wash 1200 fixtures were setup with an arrow to mount sideways. This gave them the maximum amount of pan in both directions. It does take a lot of explaining to your crew to get it right, though...
 

Amiers

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Phoenix, Az
As Sk8 said doesn’t matter just make them all the same. Personally If it’s low trim and visible I would menu towards the audience as some movers can turn down or off the display. But the real reason is you don’t want ugly cables showing. If it’s above a border it doesn’t matter which just the same for all.
 

macsound

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San Francisco, CA
I second mounting so the pan direction makes the most sense for you. Going from home to your most common direction should be the shortest route possible and not be at the extent of your fixture's capabilities.
 

Robert F Jarvis

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Sebring, FL, USA
Right. I ran our Pan from 0 to 100% slowly and watched the head rotate. It described a 450 deg circle. I then went to 50% (half pan and pointed unit(s) in that general direction. The idea being to have as much pan from stage right to stage left (these were all aiming upstage). I just never wanted to get to that place where you go to pan a bit more and the ML stops and then flips all the way back around, to carry on its journey.
 

jonares

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Nov 18, 2009
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Pacific NW, USA
Yeah, I have a batch of Elations (about 6-7 years old now) and just in the last year, discovered they had arrows. As I recall, they seemed "sideways" to me.... but whatever. Didn't pay attention to them before, don't need to now. :)
 

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