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Remote Follow Spots

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by stewmillsap, Mar 15, 2006.

  1. stewmillsap

    stewmillsap Member

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    I was at a dinner theater a few weeks ago and they had a couple of moving heads on the light truss in front of the stage that they were using as follow spots remotely. The light it threw was not as bright as a regular follow, but it was adequate. Has anybody done this and how do you go about it? I would like to use two follow spots for my stage but I need a follow that throws over 150’ and that put the price tag way above my budget.
    Keep in mind that I have yet to purchase any kind of control board or dimmers, as of yet, so if there is a particular one that I would need please comment on that also. As usual I need this as cheap as possible.

    Thanks,
    Stew’
     
  2. farmerjo1111

    farmerjo1111 Member

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    The only way that I know of to use Moving lights as follow spots is either to sit at the board and move them manually or with an infared tracking device that the performer wares. I have never seen this device but I have heard of it from other people. Most Likely it was someone sitting at a good moving light board such as a Hog and controlling them manually.

    Hope this helps out.

    Dustin Strobush
    ETC Systems Group
     
  3. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    There's a couple tracking systems. Two were made by Martin, and I think both are discontinued. One involved a body pack worn by the performer, and the lights could track no matter where that performer went. The other involved a laser aiming device. Both were tied in to the console. I've never used either, but I hear they were ok, but not perfect.

    I think Wybron also made one. Also idiosyncratic (sp?) from what I hear. I don't know if it's in production any longer either.

    Regardless, a tracking system is going to be $$$. Plus, you need a genuine moving light desk to run it. Probably an $5 - $10K Avo at least. Maybe something as inexpensive as LightJockey or HogPC would work, but I don't know. Plus, the cost of the fixture(s) this isn't going to be cheap.
     
  4. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    There's one of the Wybron systems up on eBay right now with three beltpacks. It transmits a signal to the recievers and then creates X-Y coordinates and sends them to the lights.
     
  5. jumpjet

    jumpjet Active Member

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    I want to say that the technobeam-i had beltpack following capabilities as well.
     
  6. BillESC

    BillESC Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Depending on the light level delivery required, you could probably get away with an Altman Comet followspot for a throw of 150'. For under $ 1000.00 it is a lot cheaper than a moving head, scanner or the control system required for their operation...
     
  7. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    I'm partial to the 1000Q myself. We've got two of them at school. I've used comets before, and the ease of use is no where as good as the 1000Q. But both are rock solid fixtures.
     
  8. moojoe

    moojoe Active Member

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    yea, but the 1000Q has terrible photometrics. at a 60' throw, i have to dim my stage to see it.

    in other words,
    yes, there are tracking systems, but they cost thousands plus movers and controller. two followspots that can hit that far will be less then just the movers.
     
  9. stewmillsap

    stewmillsap Member

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    Thanks People,
    Without direction, a newbie such as myself could get into a lot of trouble.

    Stew'
     
  10. stewmillsap

    stewmillsap Member

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    According to the specs at Altman the comet and the 1000Q are only rated to throw 75' and I need one to throw over 150'
     
  11. BillESC

    BillESC Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    In my Altman Dealer Book the photometrics for the 1000Q and Comet are as follows for maximum listed throw:

    1000Q - 125' 26 fc
    Comet - 150' 36 fc

    While I'm at it...

    Satellite 1 - 150' 107 fc
    Voyager - 150' 378 fc
    Exployer - 150' 500* fc

    * Estimated, data given for 100' and 200'
     
  12. moojoe

    moojoe Active Member

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    according to www.bmisupply.com, a Altman Comet costs $1130, an Altman Satilite costs $4819.
    I would suggest two Altman Comets, which include casters and tail. $2260 would be much cheeper then even just one moving profile.
     
  13. stewmillsap

    stewmillsap Member

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    Would the 26fc for the 1000Q or the 36fc for the comet be enough to light up an actor with any other stage lights being on?
     
  14. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    My 1000Q does that no sweat from about a hundred feet.
     
  15. jonhirsh

    jonhirsh Active Member

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    have you considerd renting?

    I am doing a show in May with 22 mac 2000 profiles which would cost an obseen amount but since im renting it will only cost me 11 grand.

    so you can see that there is the solution to most budget problems rent.

    JH
     
  16. ManOfLights

    ManOfLights Member

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    i would recommend any strand boards... i have found them to be really good
     
  17. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    If you are doing movers you and want to go strand the 500 series is the only way to go... otherwise you will be banging your head on the wall
     
  18. Pie4Weebl

    Pie4Weebl Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    11 grand!? How long are you renting them for?
     
  19. jonhirsh

    jonhirsh Active Member

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    A little more then a week like 9 days.

    JH
     
  20. nez

    nez Member

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    well there are other ways of movin the follow spots like with the school im at we have 3 of the inteligent lightin follow spots that we dont do manualy but we program the follow spots with our board and then all we do is hit go and as long as the actors are on they mark it looks great
     

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