New rig being installed

SOregonLights

Member
Joined
May 17, 2020
Location
Oregon
Hey there!
I am the technical (video, sound, and lighting) coordinator for my church. We are finally upgrading our lighting rig! I recommended the purchase of PAR56 fixtures and will be rigging and installing them. (Yes, I am experienced in rigging) the one thing I’m not 100% sure on is electric. How many PAR56 fixtures can we have connected to a 4 channel dimmer?

the dimmer is rated at 1200 Watts/Channel, 2400 Watts/Maximum, 15 Amp Power Supply Cord, 120V.

the fixtures are rated at 120V. How many of these fixtures can we have on one of these dimmers and plugged into one 20A circuit?

thank you all in advance!
 

BillConnerFASTC

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Location
Clayton NY 13624
Did you say four channels 1200 watts each - which is 40 amps - all powered by one 15 amp cord?

Name and model of dimmer pack would help.

And what wattage PAR 56? 500, 300, or other?

Your question runs close to the are you sure you're qualified to do this. Sorry.

PS the 15 amp cord say 3 at 500 watts or up to 6 at 300 watts if clearly non-continous.
 

RonHebbard

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Premium Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2004
Location
Waterdown, ON, CA
Hey there!
I am the technical (video, sound, and lighting) coordinator for my church. We are finally upgrading our lighting rig! I recommended the purchase of PAR56 fixtures and will be rigging and installing them. (Yes, I am experienced in rigging) the one thing I’m not 100% sure on is electric. How many PAR56 fixtures can we have connected to a 4 channel dimmer?

the dimmer is rated at 1200 Watts/Channel, 2400 Watts/Maximum, 15 Amp Power Supply Cord, 120V.

the fixtures are rated at 120V. How many of these fixtures can we have on one of these dimmers and plugged into one 20A circuit?

thank you all in advance!
Welcome to Dave's Control Booth Forum;
Are your PAR 56's incandescent or LED?
If incandescent, how many Watts per unit??
If LED, are you sure their manufacturer warranties them for powering via a dimmer and / or by any AC which has passed through / been controlled by an SCR or TRIAC??? Some are MOST are NOT.
Toodleoo!
Ron Hebbard
 
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SteveB

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2004
Location
Brooklyn, NY
The pack can only handle 1800 watts TOTAL and you’d need to downrate that 20% if you use for more than 3 consecutive hrs.

If it has 4 dimmers, you are still limited by that 15amp/1800 watt single power feed cable.

Thus 4 dimmers at a maximum draw of 1440 watts for the ENTIRE pack is 360 watts per dimmer.

PAR56 lamps were generally 300 or 500 watts, so this essentially tells you to use 300 watt lamps,
 

SOregonLights

Member
Joined
May 17, 2020
Location
Oregon
Did you say four channels 1200 watts each - which is 40 amps - all powered by one 15 amp cord?

Name and model of dimmer pack would help.

And what wattage PAR 56? 500, 300, or other?

Your question runs close to the are you sure you're qualified to do this. Sorry.

PS the 15 amp cord say 3 at 500 watts or up to 6 at 300 watts if clearly non-continous.
thank you for your reply!
The specs are a direct copy and paste from the manufacturer.
It is the Leviton D4DMX-MD5 Dimmer pack. I am planning on running 300W lamps in the fixtures.


As far as qualifications go, I don’t want to sound defensive at all, but I have works on several rigs in the design, rigging, fixture installation, and programming process. I’ve just never really messed with electrical. I was not planning on messing with the electrical on this project either, I just wanted to have some information from folks that knew a little more about the electrical side of lights for when we consult with our electrician later this week.

thank you again for your reply!
 

SOregonLights

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May 17, 2020
Location
Oregon

SOregonLights

Member
Joined
May 17, 2020
Location
Oregon
The pack can only handle 1800 watts TOTAL and you’d need to downrate that 20% if you use for more than 3 consecutive hrs.

If it has 4 dimmers, you are still limited by that 15amp/1800 watt single power feed cable.

Thus 4 dimmers at a maximum draw of 1440 watts for the ENTIRE pack is 360 watts per dimmer.

PAR56 lamps were generally 300 or 500 watts, so this essentially tells you to use 300 watt lamps,
Awesome! So I will plan on installing two dimmer packs each with their own independent power supply.
Thank you for your reply!
 

BillConnerFASTC

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Location
Clayton NY 13624
I must say I'm slightly perplexed by the product data and why it specifically is rated for a total of 2400 watts on a 15 amp Edison plug. However, if the product is listed (UL) I'd be ok with up to eight 300 watt lamps total on the pack, and max of six on any one channel. Much more comfortable with max of six lamps and max if three on any one channel. If the product is not listed, don't use it.
 

SOregonLights

Member
Joined
May 17, 2020
Location
Oregon
I must say I'm slightly perplexed by the product data and why it specifically is rated for a total of 2400 watts on a 15 amp Edison plug. However, if the product is listed (UL) I'd be ok with up to eight 300 watt lamps total on the pack, and max of six on any one channel. Much more comfortable with max of six lamps and max if three on any one channel. If the product is not listed, don't use it.
Thank you.

do you think it would be better if I ran four 300 watt fixtures on one pack and four on a second one, each with their own power run?
 

SteveB

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Joined
Mar 20, 2004
Location
Brooklyn, NY
Thank you.

do you think it would be better if I ran four 300 watt fixtures on one pack and four on a second one, each with their own power run?
Yes, do 2 power runs. You don’t want a full load of 8x300 watt lamps on a single 20 amp/2400 watt power feed, for the same reason that you likely need to de-rate the feeder by 20% for continual use.
 
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JohnD

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north central OK
One more thing to consider, the possible shortage of par lamps in the future.
 

RonHebbard

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Location
Waterdown, ON, CA
Thank you.

do you think it would be better if I ran four 300 watt fixtures on one pack and four on a second one, each with their own power run?
@SOregonLights I'd be MUCH happier and likely your dimmer packs would be likewise.

Bonus comments: When "Value Engineered" [Read cheap / low end / Economy] dimmers are rated for: 1200 Watts per channel :
it's often with only one dimmer operating at 100% at any given instant.
2 dimmers powering 600 Watts per dimmer operating at 100% at any given instant.
3 dimmers powering 400 Watts per dimmer operating at 100% at any given instant.
4 dimmers powering 300 Watts per dimmer operating at 100% at any given instant.

We can swerve into discussions of brief increases in loading as stone cold incandescent filaments are instantly powered from zero to 100% and also the joys and trade-offs of preheating and never taking incandescents fully out.
Perhaps these latter items are best left for another thread, another day.
Toodleoo!
Ron Hebbard
 

Amiers

Renting to Corporate One Fixture at a Time.
Joined
May 28, 2009
Location
Phoenix, Az
You should recommend LED fixtures if these won’t be easily accessible from a ladder. With the EOL of pars coming it’s only a matter of time before you end up having to respec the lighting.
 

gafftaper

Senior Team
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Seattle, WA
One more thing to consider, the possible shortage of par lamps in the future.
Yeah this is a really important point. It will not be long until you can't buy lamps for those PARS. So it might be wiser to spend your money on LED's instead.

Note: You have to spend about $600 per fixture to buy an LED that will produce a quality white/pastel color that looks good on skin. Cheaper LED's are great for lots of color but tend to look weird on skin. So you can go cheaper to light the walls or for color on the band, but you need quality fixtures to make your front light on faces look good. I recommend products from ETC's Colorsource line or Chauvet's Professional Ovation line as the cheapest fixture I trust for front light.
 

SteveB

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Mar 20, 2004
Location
Brooklyn, NY
All good points. Maybe 5 years and you won’t find PAR56 lamps. If I recall PAR 64 is already discontinued ?

For the money invested in 2 power line, just run 1 with all your LED’s off that.
 
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BillConnerFASTC

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Jan 30, 2010
Location
Clayton NY 13624
But he can buy all the PAR 56s and dimmers for not much more than cost of one LED. Maybe cost of two LED with the extra circuit and several cases of lamps. I agree with the concept and do it for high schools because of now or never funding, but churches have cash flow, not bond issues. Not an easy decision. And I wonder how much LED will change - cost and function - in 5+ years.
 
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