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Self Tracking followspots

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by Oobleck1441, Feb 28, 2008.

  1. Oobleck1441

    Oobleck1441 Member

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    Is there anything on the market for followspots that will track a chip?
    Example.. I have a lead actor on stage, wearing a barcelet or necklace with a chip in it.
    The spot light is ran from a light board for fade in or GEL color
    but as the actor moves with the chip, the follow spot follows the actor,
    since they have the chip
    Ik they have inteligent lighting, how about inteligent followspots. haha
    Thanks, Oobleck1441
     
  2. ScaredOfHeightsLD

    ScaredOfHeightsLD Active Member

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  3. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    All of the systems that have been available have significant problems with interference, signal reflections, and accuracy. Almost every instance of these systems being used that I have heard of has had problems.
     
  4. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    AutoPilotII actually works extremely well IF correctly implemented. I have worked on a show using it before and it worked rather well, didn't have anything to do with it besides knowing that it was being used. Go over to lightnetwork, there are some people there that are experienced using it.
     
  5. porkchop

    porkchop Well-Known Member

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    Contemplated using autopilot once. Was told by several people that it was a great tool for focusing, but tracking in a live show was herky jerky at best. It is possible this has been improved with the autopilotII system. Hope so it would be nice to have automated follow spots.
     
  6. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    Moving Lights and AutoPilotII can NEVER replace good human followspot operators! Though I am fond of the "CyberSpot"-a Cyberlight Turbo with the mirror removed and humans (truss monkeys) to point them.;)
     
  7. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    Didn't Martin also make something like autopilot? I think it had a device which the operator used to shoot a laser at the target, and the lights would follow that. Idea was that you could use moving lights as follow spots, but only needed one person to do the actual following.
     
  8. TimMiller

    TimMiller Well-Known Member

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    Martin did have something like that. If my memory serves me correctly it had some weird issues. The martin system wasnt much cheaper than the autopilot system. For the autopilot II the base price is 25K. And it does take a good bit of work to setup. You have to set these recievers all the way around the stage, USL, USR, USC, SR, SL, DSL, DSR, DSC.
     
  9. ReddyKilowatt

    ReddyKilowatt Member

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    I would like to point out to everyone here that APII is a very simplistic and effective system. Most people have heard stories about AutoPilot being difficult to setup and calibrate, requiring a full-time person to maintain, time-consuming, unreliable and so on. These were all true of the API. APII is very streamlined and easy to setup and calibrate. You can check out the instructions here:


    Autopilot II Help


    If anyone would like to know more about APII, feel free to contact me and I'll fill you in.
     
  10. NevilleLighting

    NevilleLighting Active Member

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    From my reading through the APII's manual it seems like movers are permanently slaved to certain beltpacks. Is this true?

    Followspots are always a touchy issue. Myself, I am rather old school and I appreciate the human touch of a seasoned spot op. It's true that the ops you end up with are often a wild card. It's a a tough conundrum. In the gigs with better budgets I usually end up with spot ops that are great. In a smaller gig I end up with ops that I may love to replace with computers, but can't afford them.

    As a designer I always value the input of those I work with. On a near daily basis I have questions and suggestions from spot ops that could improve the look of the show. A computer will never interrupt me to clarify a situation that may be happening while I am talkling to a director, a stage manager, the fly floor, one or two board ops and 2-3 spot ops. I appreciate more sets of human eyes on the stage and the input they may have.
     
  11. ReddyKilowatt

    ReddyKilowatt Member

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    Hello David,

    Actually, this is a misconception of APII. When you setup a fixture to be used with APII, the program automatically assigns an additional DMX channel to that fixture (12 fixtures, 12 additional DMX channels). The value of these control channels determines what beltpack the fixtures follows or if the fixture is controlled by the console. Check out page 4 of the quick-start manual at the following link:

    http://www.wybron.com/products/tracking_systems/autopilot/Autopilot_II_quick_start.pdf

    Dusty Hudgins
    Sales Manager
    Wybron, Inc
    [email protected]
     

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