My schools new set-up!!! (so excited)


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My school is getting its nice new permeant set-up, and I am so excited!!!

Here is the plan so far:
22 ETC Source 4 19' 575 watt lights
6 ETC Source 4 26' 575 watt lights
6 ETC Source 4 36' 575 watt lights
6 ETC Source 4 50' 575 watt lights
20 Source Four PAR 575 watt with complete lens kit (NSP, MFL, WFL)

1 24 x 2.4kw rack (dimmer)
1 12 x 2.4 kw rack (dimmer)
cables (I won't bore everyone by talking about that)

20 7.5" Short Snoot Top Hats for S4/PAR
10 "A" Size Source Four template holders
10 Source Four Donuts

and to top it all off an ETC Express 125!!!

(all of this will be used of corse. an electrician is going to look over/fix all of the lights that we are getting)

OK, so questions:
whats the difference between a donut and a template holder???

Any helpful hints with all of this stuff. I've only worked with my school's 12 Fresnels so far, so all of this stuff is new, and its coming in 1 week before the big musical goes up, so.....

and lastly: what helpful hints do you have to the light board. I've never worked with a real light board (I don't conceder our little american DJ board to be a real board....). I downloaded the manual but its 350 pages long, and i don't have enough time to read it, so any helpful hints for that? I'm most worried/excited about this, since I have never acutely worked a nice light board, and this seems to be a very nice light board.

First, I would download the offline editor to play with. If you need help finding it let me know. I use that equipment all the time minus the console. It's standard and top of the line. The difference between the donut and the template holder is a donut is put in the front of the fixture where the gel holder goes and it is geared torwards narowing the focus of the beam. I use this alot when I am using a gobo and I want to sharpen the image. It's hard to explain but you pop a donut in and you will notice a huge difference. :) A template holder hold the template of course.
I just did a google search and I can't find the offline editor. I've got Mac OS X, so I'm not sure if it would run on it.....


[Edit] Also, I forgot, but how much does the S4 Par change with the different lenses. how big a change is it, and it goes from what to what?
I don't have a ton of experience with S4 Parnels - but I was talking with a member of the design faculty and she was complaining that those parnels were closer to pars than fresnels. She said the beam was pretty uneven and the quality of the light was crap. Maybe she's on crack, or the fixtures we demo'ed weren't properly aligned. Just a heads up.
All lighting software wont work for Mac's. This industry is PC based. In terms of the Par's. Same as a can except it's sharper focus.

NSP= Narrow Flood
MLF= Medium Flood
WLF= Wide Flood

I prefer the source four pars because of how bright the lamp is but If I had to do a big show, I would still stick with the par bars.
Have the electrician do three things. First have him look at the exploded pictorial and service manual for the used fixtures he is going to look at and compare the fixtures to what’s supposed to be there. Remember that while the newer 750 series of fixture is similar, many of the parts are not the same so any repair parts you get must state that they are for the old series fixture and you will need to provide the old part numbers for that not the new part numbers where it has changed.

Second before he goes to replace anything warn or burned up, have him contact ETC customer support or any number of us that have experience with such things like high temperature fixture wiring or parts, because doing any thing from replacing missing screws with normal zinc ones, using other than rated high temperature materials and coatings, to finding it necessary to replace a fixture with a chip in the side of the lens can cost you money. Third, also have him give a service call to all electrical equipment you already have such as the Fresnels to verify it’s done right and in good condition. Might as well start from scratch.

There is a big difference between being trained in generally safe wiring and being trained in knowing what parts are supposed to be there much less function, and what you can do to repair or replace what’s done wrong or needing to be replaced. Lots of high temperature and rust issues otherwise when those not experienced with such things that will be missed. I have found many a wire nut and 90c wire inside a lamp cap. Yea it can be done, and would be done in a household light, but not in a stage fixture thus my caution with a electrician doing the work.

By the way, I don't consider myself an expert on such fixtures either because I don't work with them everyday. While I approve of general repairs or remove stuck bolts on the ETC fixture, I don't know what to look for on a day to day thing. Other people would be better off on saying what to look for or how to inspect or repair them. Little tips such as getting the reflector out can be the difference between chipping it and getting it out easily.

A donut is like a gel frame only it’s a single plate of normally one but frequently a few diameters you can put into the accessories gel frame slot of the Leko. It’s function is to clean up the image and has been discussed elsewhere better on the forum. This part with the pattern holder is very useful to have when doing a graphic image. If you are just doing a breakup pattern that’s going to be slightly out of focus, you would not need it. For a window, the donut will be very useful so get them.

Can’t help you on the board beyond start doing what you can by way of manual and learn the rest as you need it or during rehearsal/off time. Make copies. Put the original in a file somewhere and don’t let anyone near it. Have another with the board, and more with anyone wishing a copy.

Why so many long focus fixtures? Optimum range is 30 to 50' and that’s to someone’s head on a stage. Realizing it’s in a gym, 22 fixtures at 30 to 50 feet is going to be a lot of front lighting at the same range, and little to none lights left for top, side and specials. Granted what you are getting is a lot of fixtures, I’m thinking that eventually you will have to purchase lens trains to swap to wider focus with. Might be better off doing it now if possible. I assume you have designed a lighting plot or two before you chose what fixtures would be most needed?

As for what the change would be between the 5 types of PAR lens - yes there is 5 lenses available, your choice of NSP, MFL and WFL is a good place to start. As for what's the difference or why you should purchase different lenses or lens kits... that's in beam angle similar to the Leko beam angles. You can probably make do with say 12 fixtures with MFL lens, than get 8 lens kits to swap special fixtures to. That will be a sufficient start, but eventually you will likely need more choice in lenses. At 30' the VNSP beam is 7.8 and 349fc. The NSP at 30' is 9.9' and 226fc. The MFL is 11.1'x18.3' and 116fc. The WFL is 16'x29' at 54 fc. The Extra Wide Flood is not listed in Photometrics Handbook.
I just took a look at ETC's page for the Express 125. We use an Express 48/96 but I'm pretty confident the setup is generally the same. I've only worked with ETC's boards and I personally like them, they are fairly straightforward.

You basically have four main areas of operation on the console; the Stage display, the Blind display, the Patch display, and the Setup display. The Stage display shows you the current status of the lights, what channels are at what intensity, what cue is running or loaded, etc. The Blind display allows you to edit or delete cues and submasters while running lights in the Stage display, that way you can make changes without affecting the lights you are currently using. In the Patch display you assign the dimmers to channels which serves as your basis for everything else you do with the lights in the console. Setup lets you adjust default settings and record things to diskette or record macros. ETC's keypads are very user friendly too, the keypad is pretty much the most straightforward way to select dimmers and channels, put them at a specific intensity, and record them as cues or submasters. Two sets of fader pairs A/B and C/D control the playback of cues. To aid in your navigation through the board there are eight softkeys that have different functions depending on where you are in the console (they are displayed across the bottom of the screen).

I'm not sure if any of this is extremely helpful to you or how much you already know about ETC's Express consoles but if you have any more specific questions or any questions about how to operate it at all I'll provide you all the information I can, I'm just unaware what information you might need about it. Hope any part of that helps a little, if not I'll answer your more specific questions when you figure out what they are. :lol: Goodluck with the new equipment, it must be like Christmas! 8)
zac850 said:
and lastly: what helpful hints do you have to the light board. I've never worked with a real light board (I don't conceder our little american DJ board to be a real board....). I downloaded the manual but its 350 pages long, and i don't have enough time to read it, so any helpful hints for that? I'm most worried/excited about this, since I have never acutely worked a nice light board, and this seems to be a very nice light board.

I'm actually a network admin, much mroe than I am a theatre tech, so, I get to look at lon gmanuals and books all the time. What I would do, is read the getting started section cover to cover, and then, keep the manual next to your board, and everytime you want to do something, look it up, even if you think you know about it already. Chances are you'll read a sentence or two that describes something you didn't remember from the last time. Eventually, you'll become intimately familiar with the operation of the console, or whatever you're applying this strategy to.

If you've got the time, throw up some lights, gel them distinctly (a red, a blue, a green, a magenta, etc), and then just sit at the board working through some of the cue & effect programming stuff with what you've got up. You're going to retain more applying the reading to a real scenario, but, I'd want to at least know how to do some basic stuff before I went in and did a show on the desk.
Just my two cents.
Thats what I need to do. I learn the best by touching and doing, much better then reading in a book. I'm just not sure how much time I have from when we get the board till when the show goes up, which scares me a little.....

I am going to need to sit and play with it for a bit to figure out how it works....
Speaking of schools getting new setups.

my school has just put into plan a 4year audio visual/production plan which includes a whole new lighting rig.

Currently we have 6 1200 PC's, 18 1kw par 64's, 10 500w profiles, 10 1kw profiles, 14 500w fresnels, 1 2.5kw spot, 1 1kw spot, 4 x 6way cys and a whole load of crappy stuff like patt 23's from the olden days and whatever.

the control wont be updated, we have 5 digital racks now and a event desk which apparently is staying but new sound mixer and all!!
I'd love to get a new rig at my school. I've got a new dimmer rack and a new lighting board. The problem is all the fixtures are 30 years old. Also we seem to be missing downlighting and backlighting. YAY frontlight :-(
Yea my school just wrote up a whole bunch of grant applications trying to get some money to upgrade because currently all of our fixtures are crap, we have hard wired circuits that have crappy positioning. Our board is crap. i say 100k would be a nice amount to recieve
most of stuff is old. my high school theatre was renavated in 94. we got a new sound system in 96 and light board and dimmers in 00. all the fixtures are old. we have 18 paralipsphere(sp?), 12 15.3 degree strand spots, 12 12 degree colortrans, 8 lekos, 8 fersnels, 5 par 64, 6 14" scoops, and 6 3 cell cycs. we hoping to get 2 moving mirrors this spring and maybe some more strands or source 4 zooms.

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