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overtemp line?

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by w3st0n21, Mar 11, 2009.

  1. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    so my school has a wall plate connector labeled overtemp (4-pin female XLR style) and on stage there is another female connector labeled overtemp. does anyone know what this line is for?
     
  2. palettejockey

    palettejockey Member

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    Overtemp was a method of indicating at the console that the temperature in the dimmer rack had exceeded a certain limit. It was pretty common in Strand CD80/ Mantrix/ LightPalette systems, as well as in older Teatronics installations (and probaly a few others).

    A contact closed on a thermostat in the dimmer rack, which sent a signal up a dedicated control line. The console that connected/ connects to these dimmers had both a control output & cable (usually AMX) and an overtemp line.

    As I recall the system works with or without Overtemp connected.

    What sort of dimmers and console do you have?
     
  3. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    The old CD80 overtemp line is a dumb DC line; in any board, two pins of that jack are wired directly to an LED on the control surface. It's like they wanted a low-tech fail-proof method of knowing if the rack was getting too hot.
     
  4. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    we have a strand CD80 AE (right on!), and a strand lightboard m. (i hate it, i hate it, i hate it!). as far as im concerned the overtemp isnt connected at the dimmers (i know its not connected at the board). so my question is could i send a DMX signal through this line (making a 3pin to 4 pin adapter only using 3 of the 4 pins) to avoid running 150+ feet of DMX?
     
  5. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    Maybe.

    Under qualified supervision and endorsement, pull the faceplates so you can see what kind of wiring was/is used. Then post exactly what is printed on the cable.

    IF it meets all the requirements for DMX transmission (a big if!): rather than building adapters, I'd recommend replacing the connectors in the faceplates with D5M/D5Fs; and relabeling as "DMX Tie-Line" or similar.

    Is the female onstage located adjacent to the dimmer rack? Or adjacent to an alternate DMX input? The fact that both are females might mean that the other ends are connected to the dimmer rack, and thus its not a "dry line." So before continuing with the above, be sure to verify no voltages are present, and continuity across the jacks.
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2009
  6. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    i have never seen an any cables other than the AMX line going to the dimmers. and the way the dimmers are aranged are as follows: they are on a raised contrete platform (around 15ft high) in the SL wing. the platform is over one of the dressing rooms, and next to the dressing room door there is a little black box mounted on the wall that has an overtemp (f) and an AMX 1 output (secondary output? i guess ill have to do some tracing.)...i think ill take pics in 6th period (stagecraft!!) and try to put them up to help explain the setup. thanks for the help.
     
  7. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    I want to say it was recommended to use the same type of cable for the overtemp line as the AMX line. In practice, the overtemp line needs only two conductors total and doesn't care if they're twisted, untwisted, backwards-twisted, or a barbed-wire fence. So the chances of (relatively expensive) RS-485 cable being used for this are very slim.
     
  8. fredthe

    fredthe Active Member

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    From your description, you should pay close attention to Derek's warning. The on-stage jacks sound like they are a secondary location for plugging in the console, meaning both overtemp jacks are likely connected to the dimmers.

    -Fred
     
  9. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    yeah i think you guys are right. so now that i know that these secondary jacks most likey go to the dimmers i want to find a small AMX board so i can have somewhat of a remote focus unit. speaking of RFU's does anyone know if/where i could find one for the lightboard m? or how much it is?
     
  10. fredthe

    fredthe Active Member

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    I don't believe the Lightboard M had RFU capability. It had some limited remote control functionality, but probably not what you're looking for.
    I will note that a Lightboard M recently sold on eBay for $36... there's certanly not much demand for them :)
     
  11. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    ROFL!!!!! i am sooo showing that to the drama teacher...we have gone through so much crap with that thing this year...EACH time we turn it on we must hit the reset button one OR MORE times to get the board running to its semi-full capacity....i want an ION sooo bad. ;)
     
  12. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

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    I have an LB/M that I bought for about $50 .. and it's a little flaky. It sits in my office and functions as a small tall table to put things on.

    For a small AMX board, look at a Mantrix/2 with Pro Patch.

    Or get an Expression series board with an RFU. :)
     
  13. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    So. I'm just going to write this on this thread. Do u think that if we upgrade our system anytime soon that we should upgrade the dimmers? (CD80 AE) or just retrofit?
     
  14. Les

    Les Well-Known Member

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    Retrofit if they are safe and reliable. And the CD80's usually are.
     
  15. dramatech

    dramatech Well-Known Member

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    The Strand CD80 series of racks are very solid and still in use in many theatres in the US. Most have either been converted to DMX, use an AMX to DMX convertor or were made with both AMX anc DMX input capability. I havn't had any dealings with the CD AE, but I believe there were some recent threads on this forum that covered the models with the DMX inputs. I have converted them using the Strand conversion, the Johnson system conversion and one that I developed using circuit boards from Lightronics. All of them worked great. Just get an affordable console that outputs DMX and do the least expensive conversion on the rack. You maynot even need to convert the rack.
     
  16. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    would a DMX to AMX work better/be cheaper than a retrofit?
     

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