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Portable dimmers

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by w3st0n21, Feb 10, 2009.

  1. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    Location:
    Richmond, Va
    Hey guys,
    what are some cheaper, but nice portable dimmer packs?
    im thinking about getting a couple for my church's youth group. is there a better solution then portable dimmer packs? (these will have to go with us on youth retreats, so compact is important)

    thanks
     
  2. tcahall

    tcahall Member

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    It might help if you define "cheaper, but nice".

    Are you looking for something like the Chauvet shoe box? Very inexpensive and serviceable. Throw it away when you have problems or something like the ETC that will cost you about three times as much but will (probably) outlast the Chauvet. Of course, they both will provide identical life expectancy if running over them with a bus or immersing them in fluids is in your plans.

    Tim.
     
  3. Sony

    Sony Active Member

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    Occupation:
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  4. Esoteric

    Esoteric Well-Known Member

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    ETC Smartpack. All the way.

    If you have to Elation.

    Avoid NSI/Leviton like the plague.

    Mike
     
  5. w3st0n21

    w3st0n21 Active Member

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    200 bucks is the ABSOLUTE max. as much as I would want ETC we dont need anything that solid, or expensive (if you knew the youth group you would know why. we seem prone to breaking expensive things). we have seven Lepricon portable dimmers (6 channel, stagepin) that we use every sunday for our 2 gym services. If we ever had our youth choir tour again i would want some of those, or something similar. but choir tour doesnt seem very close in the future.
     
  6. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    I've used the Leprecon and Lightronics with never an issue. Also have a couple Elations and they're fine.

    I've not used a Chauvet product in a number of years, so I can't vouch for their recent stuff.
     
  7. BillESC

    BillESC Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    You haven't mentioned how manu cirucits or what wattage you need.

    With only a $ 200.00 budget, you could get the NSI D4DMX and change back. It is four circuits of 600w.
     
  8. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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  9. dramatech

    dramatech Well-Known Member

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    Occupation:
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    Location:
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    About four months ago, I purchased a four pack from Bulb America, the same as Derek. I bought the $69.95 and got a Matrix with LCD display. I was just checking their site and the Matrix is listed at $129.95. I was directed to this site by somebody on either the Control booth or the light network, I don;t remember which. They stated that they had ordered the $69.95 Bulb America and got an Elation. I think that Bulb America sends you what ever they have the most of, but for the price that you pay. All of these shoebox dimmers that they show on their website, are basically built by the same company and relabeled to different names. ELation, Chavet, Matrix and others. I love the unit I got, we have used it for practicals on almost every production since it's purchase. Just don't over load any one channel, because the Triacs don't have much headroom. If you treat these guys well, as far as loads they are rugged and will last a long time. Also the Triacs are easily replaced with higher quality ones from mouser if the needed . I build a lot of the dimmers that we use in our theatre, and just the logic circuitry and drivers cost me as much as the entire dimmer pack from Bulb America. I would easily purchase more of them in the future, if it wasn't for the fact, that I have built more dimmers than we have instruments at the present time.
     

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