Trying to get old light board to work

TimMiller

Well-Known Member
I'm wiping the dust off of an old Lighting Methods Inc, Designer console. It powers up and seems to function fine, except i cannot get it to go into patch. The console does have a tape drive and i cannot find what kind of tape it takes. I'm not sure if this is why it is not going into patch or not. Does anyone remember anything about these? I know lighting Methods was bought out in 1990 by ETC. I have already trying sending an email to ETC just as a shot in the dark but havent heard anything from them... Any ideas? I can send yall pics if you would like.
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
I used that console once. The tape drive should not affect the patch. Could it be just that the button is not making contact? I believe you need a special leaderless micro-cassette for storage. Same as used to be used in some answering machines. Might be able to use a mini-cassette designed for a personal dictation device.
 

TimMiller

Well-Known Member
I didnt have the key for the keyswitch so i replaced it with a turn switch. It still does not allow me to go into patch. I already tried a microcassette, but it is about 1/2" smaller so it will not fit. :( i wish i knew what size tape it was, or at least how many MB or KB of storage it had.
 

cutlunch

Active Member
So you have checked your wiring for any faults?
Have you gone through the board with a vaccuum cleaner?
Also have you checked the board for dry joints?
Does the board have a battery and if so have you replaced it?

You probably will already have done these things but this is what I would have tried.
 

derekleffew

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I misspoke: Mini-cassette. PM STEVETERRY. If anyone here knows, it'll be him.

And yes, please post pictures. We love pictures. gafftapegreenia calls them "Stage Lighting Porn."
 

derekleffew

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You'd think I would, it was only twenty years ago, but I think someone else patched it before I was called in to program. Mike Callahan is listed as one of the patent holders. I can't find his address right off. He has written a number of articles for, I believe, Lighting&Sound America, and his address is at the end of each article. Anyone have any old copies?
 

STEVETERRY

Well-Known Member
You'd think I would, it was only twenty years ago, but I think someone else patched it before I was called in to program. Mike Callahan is listed as one of the patent holders. I can't find his address right off. He has written a number of articles for, I believe, Lighting&Sound America, and his address is at the end of each article. Anyone have any old copies?

We still support the Designer, or at least we still have one in our service loaner stock. Let me see if I can chase up a manual.

ST
 

STEVETERRY

Well-Known Member
I didnt have the key for the keyswitch so i replaced it with a turn switch. It still does not allow me to go into patch. I already tried a microcassette, but it is about 1/2" smaller so it will not fit. :( i wish i knew what size tape it was, or at least how many MB or KB of storage it had.


We do have a manual and I will post it here on Monday as a pdf. Sorry I can't get someone to scan it sooner, unless this is a "show must go on" emergency.

Steve Terry
ETC
 

derekleffew

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Premium Member
Not to denigrate (well, maybe a little) any other lighting company, and there are few still in business, under the same ownership, that made consoles 25 years ago; but what are the chances I could get a manual or assistance or even an identical loaner console?

E.T.C. RULZ!
(My best Expression I impersonation! No beige text or bkue buttons.)

Seriously, please take this to heart the next time you are purchasing consoles, dimmers, or fixtures.
 

TimMiller

Well-Known Member
I cannot get anything to display on the screen besides the cursor at the far left hand corner. I'm thinking there is something wrong with either the keyboard or the keyboard input board, this board also controls the tape drive any all that other good stuff. I checked the batteries and they were all good.

Also, after looking at the manual and data sheet i noticed several things. 1 I found my old micro cassette recorder and a tape. The tape will not fit into the tape drive on my console. Also the data sheet specs DMX, mine has AMX out. Also The pic shows the display on the top panel, mine has the display between the tape drive and the keyboard. Any ideas???
 
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derekleffew

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If you go to www.etcconnect.com /downloads and type in the keyword "LMI" or "Designer", you can get the manual. The "tape" was a microcassette, I have two in my desk, Panasonic MC60. Hope this info helps.
Hi, Ellen. Although you've been a member since 3/4/03, the above was your first post, so maybe that's why I couldn't see you.

Here's the direct link to the User's Manual for the LMI Designer, dated 4-18-89, complete with hand-written typo corrections! The Designer was similar to a Strand Mantrix with memory, or heaven forbid, a Colortran Patchman! Good luck, TimMiller, hope you get the console back to it's rightful place, controlling lights and not collecting dust!

edit: Sounds like your board is in for a trip to Wisconsin. Do let us know how this turns out. You've brought us this far--we'd hate not knowing the ending.:)

Now Ellen, on a different but similar topic, how about a manual or at least pictures, for the only ETC console I abhor, the original MicroVision, with the unlabeled, silver buttons? Or do we just want to forget that desk ever existed? All I get is search results for the MicroVisonFX--a great little board.

Anyhow, welcome, officially, to the Booth. It's customary for new members to start a thread in the New Member Board, telling us who you are and what you've done, and who you want to be and what you want to do.
 

TimMiller

Well-Known Member
can somone send me a pic of the board that the keyboard and lcd along with some other things plug into? This board is located on the far right side of the board on the bottom panel. It has two large caps along with a big crystal with a big heatsink around it. I'm trying to figure out a few things. Mine is missing some logic chips and i dont know if they are supposed to be missing or not. Mine has some oxidation forming on it, so i'm going to pull out the chips in the surrounding areas and clean off the board. It also has a few bad caps it appears, so i'm going to pull those out and check them along with touching up some solder joints.
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
Premium Member
At this point, it's best if you contact ETC Service:

For technical support in the Americas,
please call 608/831-4116,
or toll-free in the U.S. at 800/688-4116.


Everyone who uses ETC products should have the above printed out and affixed to the wall next to the phone in the booth.
 

STEVETERRY

Well-Known Member
Man, if you could post a manual for me that would be so awesome. I really would like to get this board back to life. I will definitely owe you big time.

Go to www.etcconnect.com

Enter "LMI" (with no quotes) in the search box. Half way down the resulting page you will see a link to Designer--which is a pdf of the manual.

In case you think I did this for you--much as I want to help, I didn't. It is just a part of our standard support on our website, but I didn't know that until tonight!

Just goes to prove that there are a lot of levels of people working at ETC to make sure our customers get the right support.

I hope this helps you--let me know if you need anything more!

And, you owe me nothing!

ST

(And, now reading Ellen's post, I see my air travel today made me late to the party!)
 
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TimMiller

Well-Known Member
I still have not recieved an e-mail back from etc :(. I e-mailed them almost a week ago. Guess it went to the same place that all my e-mails to strand go.....
 

derekleffew

Resident Curmudgeon
Senior Team
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...Just goes to prove that there are a lot of levels of people working at ETC to make sure our customers get the right support....
So, wait, let me understand this... Unlike kelite @ Apollo;), it's not just you and Fred Foster assembling SourceFours™, writing code for the EOS, answering the phones, scanning manuals for the website, developing new products, and placing those ads, and writing that copy? Plus turning on systems all over the world? Who would have thought!! No offense intended to Sarah, Anne, Jim, Jeff, and the many other ETC employees who are CB members.

Sure would like to see some pictures of that original 1977? Mega-Cue, to see if it really does everything the Q-File could do. Have many universes would it control? How many simultaneous cuelists? Were the USB ports enabled in the first software revision? Is there a manual online?

Wasn't the Concept™ the first commercial product, whose name was later re-used as a "Super" Expression™ I, or was that the Idea™? Yes, I know more ETC history than maybe I should. When is Fred going to write his memoirs?
 

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