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Setting DMX Address Channels for Dimmer Packs, HELP!

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by ssp, Nov 25, 2008.

  1. ssp

    ssp Member

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    I am trying to set up a DMX Operator Pro in a night club and finding the manual to be a challenge. Here is where I am at:

    1. I have run the XLR cabling to the dimmer packs and the indicator lights show that they are receiving signal.
    2. Both dimmer packs, daisy chained as per instructions, have been set to Ch.04 as seems to be recommended in the manual.
    3. In the section of the manual labelled 7.1.2 "Setting DMX Address Channels for Dimmer Packs (Par Cans)" point #1 reads "Set the starting DMX address channel on your first dimmer pack in the link to (129) - dip switches 1 & 8 ON."

    This sentence is perplexing to me, it sounds straightforward but doesn't contain enough information for me to complete it.

    Here is what I have tried (doing this from memory):
    1. I held down the Setup button for 3 seconds to bring up the menu, arrowed down to 2. Assign Ch. and entered that menu
    2. I clicked once on the 1 and 8 dip switches under the Fixtures bank of switches at upper left (3rd row down from top)
    3. I hit Enter at which point the LCD flashed "GOOD" and all LED's on the Controller flashed.
    4. Went to control the lights using the sliders 129 - 136 and got ZIPPO, NADA, NOTHING.

    I see now, further in to the manual, that in another procedure they are having people "hit Record to enter the assign channel option" and that hit Record again to complete the assignment. Could this be the step that I'm missing.

    I'm at a loss here, trying to help friends who have this show this coming Saturday, any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Sony

    Sony Active Member

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    Occupation:
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    I'm having a hard time understanding your situation. Please Elaborate,

    What Dimmer packs do you have (Brand/Model?)
    How many Dimmer Packs do you have?
    Which ones aren't working?
    Do you have enough power going to each pack? (If the packs have 2 plugs then both need to be plugged in)
    What Control Board are you using?
    Do you have everything patched into the board?
     
  3. TheDonkey

    TheDonkey Active Member

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    Not really related 100% to this problem, but I was in (almost the same situation today.

    I was playing around with the little "Knobs" that set the Dimmer channels on our school's CD-80's, and I later went to teh booth to turn some lights on, spent 5 minutes trying to figure out how a fairly thick DMX cable broke somewhere in the wall in the past half hour.

    Turns out I left the DMS address set to 000 so it was Always Off.

    /Threadjack. Back to this unknown dimmerpack.
     
  4. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    Most dimmer packs (assuming they are dmx and not mpx) don't care what address you set them to, as long as it's less than 512. However, the controller and the pack must be set up the same in order to work together. If the dimmers use dip switches, there are a number of calculators you can download which will help you with that. Some will even work with your iphone, etc. Just google dip switch calculator and you'll get a number of hits.

    MPX packs, on the other hand, won't work with a dmx controller, and vice versa. Also, a lot of mpx packs typically like odd starting addresses (1, 3, 5, etc.).

    Also, if you want individual control over multiple packs, you'll need to set each pack to a different address, depending on how many channels each pack uses up.

    Best thing would be to post the exact brand name and model number of your equipment before anyone can offer further assistance.
     
  5. ssp

    ssp Member

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    I thought I had addressed this in my post but here goes:
    1. DMX20L's
    2. 2 dimmer packs
    3. The board seems to offer NO control, as I mentioned, because the "address channels haven't been set"
    4. Packs are properly plugged and worked with and older, simpler control board
    5. There is a single XLR plugged in to the board and the two dimmer packs are daisychained.
     
  6. ssp

    ssp Member

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    Len:
    1. They are definitely DMX dimmer packs
    2. I see NO dip switches on the dimmer packs themselves
    3. My problem is that I can't figure out this addressing scheme/issue though I have followed the inadequate manual to the letter.

    As stated previously the problem starts with this sentence in the manual: in the section of the manual labelled 7.1.2 "Setting DMX Address Channels for Dimmer Packs (Par Cans)" point #1 reads "Set the starting DMX address channel on your first dimmer pack in the link to (129) - dip switches 1 & 8 ON."

    It is this "setting the DMX Address Channels for Dimmer Packs" that is the seeming problem. When I engage the control, as mentioned above, that I am getting no results.

    I know this long distance troubleshooting has got to be one of the toughest things in the world but I had to give it a try. Thanks, Sean
     
  7. icewolf08

    icewolf08 CBMod CB Mods

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    Ok, are you only trying to control the two dimmer packs or do you have other gear as well? In either case, the DMX Operator Pro reserves all address before 129 for moving lights. So as the manual says you need to set the starting address of your packs at 129 and 133. You should not have to make ay settings on the controller itself.

    On the Elation packs, you should press the MODE button until you see an "A" on the display and the address number. From here you can use the up and down buttons to set the address. Press MENU again and you should see "CH:XX" you probably want to set this to "04" for 4 channel operation. Then press MODE again and you will get the settings for either switched or dimmer mode, set whichever you want for each channel (default is dimmer) pressing mode to confirm each setting. Once you are don the display should show the DMX address.

    On the board, you need to make sure that you don't have a fixture selected and that you are the correct mode for controlling dimmers. I have not used that particular board, but I have used other Elation boards, and there are many ways to get into other modes, which may be what is messing you up. The manual makes it sound like you should always be able to control them using the 129-136 faders, but I would check and make sure.

    Also, when you say you are using XLR cable, do you mean microphone cable? Even though all that gear uses 3-pin XLR connectors, you should always use real DMX cable. You also should have a DMX terminator in the last device if you don't already. All of this can be picked up from your local theatre dealer.
     
  8. ssp

    ssp Member

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    icewolf, thanks, I'm going to try this tonight, much appreciated. Sean
     
  9. ssp

    ssp Member

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    OK, "Thank Yous" are in order here for everyone who helped me get over the hump with my DMX/Dimmer Pack questions, especially IceWolf.

    THANK YOU!

    I succeeded, with a print out of IceWolf's recommendations, to get the dimmers assigned addresses and control them with this new Elation board in time for tomorrows show!

    Glad to have found this community and all the responsive folks who hang out here! Bye for now, Sean
     
  10. icewolf08

    icewolf08 CBMod CB Mods

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    That is what we are here for, and hopefully you will come back!
     
  11. DiannaR

    DiannaR Member

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    This situation is similar to the one I am having. My church has purchased the Stage Setter 24 board and 6 slim par 56s, plus an Chauvet Intimidator spot 350 ... how do i set the displays on the pars to match the stage setter board channels 9 - 15 for a 7CH light setting? Is it d 004? Also, what about setting for channels 21- 24, do i set the lights for 3 CH at d0135? Thank you for your help! :)
     
  12. icewolf08

    icewolf08 CBMod CB Mods

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    I am not exactly sure how the StageSetter 24 works, nor do I know much about the fixtures you have, but you are thinking along the right lines. The "dXXX" on the display of the fixtures is the DMX address. So if you want to control ALL the PARs on channels 9-15, then you would need to put them in seven channel mode and set the address on each one to: d009. If you wanted to have individual control of each light, you would have to set addresses of d009, d016, d023, etc. However, I think you would run out of control channels on your board as it can only support 24 channels. If you run in 3 channel mode and wanted to have them at 21-24 you would set the address to d021.

    Basically, you want to set your fixtures starting address to correspond with where you want it on the board. If you want your Intimidator Spot to run in it's 14 channel mode it would need a starting address of no higher than d011. Why? Well that would make it start on fader 11 and leave enough faders to control all the attributes of the fixture (it needs 14 channels). It would take faders 11-24. If you run it in 8 channel mode then you could start it at d017 and it would take faders 17-24.
     
    DiannaR and (deleted member) like this.
  13. DiannaR

    DiannaR Member

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    Okay, that is what I thought. thank you! :) I have some old color shots that I am using as well, they still need to be dipswitched. I did set all the slimpars to d009. This is what I am hoping to do today, set the Intimidator to d001, use 8 channels, the floor slimpars to d009 (7 channel), Top slimpars to d016 (3 channel) and old color shots (dipswitch to 1, 2, 5 10) for channels 19 - 21 and if I can then add in par cans, I'd like to do that as well....

    If I use the dp-415s for the floor par cans along side the LEDs, do I have to have them all run pass thru a dp-415?
     
  14. hobbsies

    hobbsies Active Member

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    Occupation:
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    Here's what's happening:

    You're setting your dimmer packs to be in four channel mode by setting the ch setting to 04
    Then you are addressing the two packs to be 4channels apart starting at 129. It seems like you don't have the ability to control these dimmer packs on any other addresses except 129 through 136. The dip switches are binary. They are either on or off. Each switch corresponds to a number double the previous switch (binary). Switch 1 = 1, 2 = 2, 3=4, 4=8, 5=16, etc. every switch you turn on you add up the numbers they correspond to. So turning on switches 1 (=1) + 8 (=128) = 1+128=129. If you have another pack and its address needs to be 133, the largest bit number below that is 128 which is switch 8, then you need 5 more, so switch 3 for 4 more DMX addresses, and then 1 pretty much has to be on always, so 128+4+1=133.

    Now when you go to the board, you can use the 8 faders on the right side of the board to control all 8 channels on the dimmer packs.

    I hope that wasn't too confusing.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2013
  15. hobbsies

    hobbsies Active Member

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    I think you're going to have problems. It seems this board can only control 1-1 just skimming thru its manual. Setting fixtures' dip switches higher than 136 you won't be able to control those units. You have color shots set to 1 2 5 10. 10 I think is usually used for custom settings and doesn't correspond to an address number. It will probably override any other address settings. Switch 9 is the highest address dip switch, which is 256. But you can't use a switch higher than 7 for anything on this console except the dimmer packs which use switch 8. If you want them to be ch 19 then the switches you need are 5,2,1.
     

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