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Control/Dimming What is your preference MA2 or Hog Control systems

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by Old School 512, Jun 19, 2017.

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MA or HOG on PC or Used Console

  1. MA2onPC with custom PC and Extenal Screens

    42.9%
  2. HOG3/4onPC with custom PC and External screens

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. Used MA2 Ultra Light console

    14.3%
  4. Used RoadHog4

    14.3%
  5. Completely Different System and Why??

    28.6%
  1. Old School 512

    Old School 512 Member

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    Hello All,
    I am doing scenarios between installing a MA2 or a Hog3 or 4 into a 1200 seat venue. It is a remodeled cathedral with multi purpose uses. It has a stage that is 20 ft wide by 22 ft deep. Down stage at the front the stage and wings make it 40 ft across. I have the points for a 40ft span 15ft in front of the stage high (about 20ft). The description is just for a size ref for the venue .
    So I would like 2 DMX universes on the front span via Artnet or Ethernet through a Cisco 16 port gigabyte switch as I already have it. I also need either MA's 4 node on upstage right and left or a Hog 8 port node backstage and a larger cable selection (just thinking). I also need 1 DMX universe from FOH to the DMX interface to the existing house lighting. So 2+8+1=11 actual DMX ports spread around a large and tall space with nodes a good distance apart.

    So would you use a MA2 used Ultra Light or new MA on PC with a Command Wing and networking products and custom PC.
    OR
    A Used HES Road Hog 3/4 or a new hoglet on PC with a custom PC, A separate Visualizer software pkg and there networking products.

    Though a used to use a Hog 1k, many things have changed mostly features and price. At the time I thought any console from Flying Pig Systems was the desk to have. Now the price in the Hog and MA leaner offerings and different configs. Demands that I ask you the LDs and Techs working with this hardware to sound in please. This is going to be the greatest expense that will have to be active for 5+ years. Used for any occasion.

    Fixtures is a whole different post. I have done a rough fixture layout and I should have plenty of channels I only am thinking of 2 Clay Paky K10s or 20s for stage candy otherwise just simple moving heads and some RGB Pars, this is a variable. A forward thanks to anyone telling me there tales of configs and why you like it.

    Take Care All and thanks again...
     
  2. jxgriffi

    jxgriffi Active Member

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    This is a hard decision...

    I personally do not like a PC setup for a house when it's being used by "guest" techs/LD's. I prefer a console.
    But I would also stay away from ANY Hog3 stuff. Hog4 is fine.

    We are a 1600 seat house. We have a Roadhog4 with playback wing for our setup. However, when shows come in, it's everything from AVO, MA, Chamsys, or they use our house hog. It all depends on the type of show. For us, as I'm a touring programmer also, I didn't want anything less than a Roadhog 4 or a Ma2 Light (I don't like the ultra light for too many reasons). When it came to budget, the Roadhog 4 with playback wing was the best bang for the buck in our space.

    (If you decide to go the PC route, take a look at Squeek Lights setups they have done) - https://www.controlbooth.com/threads/any-fun-custom-consoles-exist-out-there.41764/

    So that being said...take a look at what's coming into your venue. And decide from there.

    Also, I wanted to speak into your network layout. Both the MA and the Hog4 lines have Artnet/sACN out. So you don't need a MA 4-port or Hog 8-port on your network unless you need the extra universes. Hog is 12 universes out of a Roadhog and 16 out of a Full Boar/Full Size with no additional hardware. What you need in those locations is a Artnet to DMX converter which is MUCH cheaper than getting Hog/Ma Nodes. When we have guests come in, we do an artnet merge on the Roadhog and they can have full control of the house rig (7 universes) without reconfiguring anything. For our network outputs, we use Elation E-Node Pro 8's.

    Hope that helps...
     
    Old School 512 likes this.
  3. Pie4Weebl

    Pie4Weebl Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    Use what other venues in your area are using. If every other venue is using MA, get MA, if every other venue is using Hog get hog.

    Another option is the Chamsys line, we are dealers and just picked up a pair of MQ80s that we like so far.
     
  4. SteveB

    SteveB Well-Known Member

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    A lot of venues will use a Grand MA as it's easy for a tour LD to pre-viz using the MA software. Thus you can send a file to an LD, they can do some pre-build and have it on a USB.

    There's no question that MA is THE touring console and you'll likely see more folks familiar with it then a Hog. Not sure how important it's going to be to accommodate outside LD's, and if not, either Hog 4 or MA will be a personal choice.
     
    Old School 512 likes this.
  5. DavidJones

    DavidJones Member

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    There is no need to buy brand specific nodes, once you have enough hardware to give you license to output DMX. By this, I mean that if You have an MA or Hog console, you can distribute artnet or sACN over your network and use Chauvet Net-X, Elation E-nodes, Pathport or whatever. Because you are considering PC solutions, I'm guessing overall cost is a concern, so that is where a couple of 8-port nodes from Chauvet or Elation would work for any setup and be reasonably priced.

    I am not a fan of the Ultra-Light. The lack of screen above the faders, no keyboard, and missing level wheel are features that are greatly missed. The missing screen is kind of a deal breaker; you cannot see what is stored on those faders or easily access them to edit options and settings.

    It really boils down to price, but a command wing and fader wing with nice touch screens and a good keyboard can be better than an UltraLight, IMO
     
    Old School 512 likes this.
  6. Old School 512

    Old School 512 Member

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    Sorry I haven't got back to you. I am in a maze of decisions right now. After playing with both HOG4 on PC and MA2 on PC and looked at the actual setup of a PC based console. Yikes it would send a shiver down my back thinking what and how visiting LDs would think and do. As we host everything from Pro LDs to the Drummers cousin running the console I have to admit that a console seems the way to go, one case and go. Though the on PC versions of both are tempting (Squeek Lighting does make a sweet solution for the on PC versions) They still seem a bit complicated to all except those that have used them before to setup and run in a few hours time. Even programmed by me it seems like a bunch of patched together gear. So now I am leaning toward a console. The choice I guess right now is a HOG4 RoadHog or an Grand MA2 Light (I now see the huge empty space on the ultra light you mentioned). Though the name Chamsys has come up a few times and an old friend in the biz uses an ETC Cobalt. I have not studied these consoles which I will the HOG or MA2 seem to be the most common. Thanks for your time I may try to pick your brain some more. Thank You again Dave aka Old School 512
     
  7. Old School 512

    Old School 512 Member

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    Thanks for the network info as the name suggests it has been a while since I networked a rig. I should have realized that manufactures actually bind to given protocols. Not like the bad ol days when my V*Ls had a console and my conventionals ran on a different console not to mention the Arrg data repeaters that each V*L fixture was connected to. I answered part of your post info to another person by accident. You mentioned the huge blank area on the MA2 Ultra Light Yikes I wasn't paying attention. Hmm once again I ponder RoadHog4, MA Light or ? Some have mentioned others consoles so I have more home work to do. Thanks Again for your input.... Dave aka Old School 512
     
  8. Old School 512

    Old School 512 Member

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    Hello thanks for the feedback. This however is Buffalo/Niagara Falls the two competing venues IMO are terrible no or old brand name equipment. Talking to a few visiting LDs over a beer they tell me they just want to go. The lighting is either pieced together, incompatible or beat to crap. Some bring their own equipment but I must say it would be embarrassing to be a house LD at these venues. I have not done my homework on Chamsys yet. Just another variable but you said the MQ80s Hmm. I will have a look. Thank You for your time.
     
  9. Old School 512

    Old School 512 Member

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    Thanks Steve that has all been taken into account. Yes I need a console that a visiting LD can get on and have a show in a few hours. Some may have a show stored on MA or HOG which I don't know which has become more popular. Then one said Chamsys and an old friend swears buy his ETC Cobalt. I need both programibility and busking ability. My research continues. Thank you for you time... Dave aka Old School 512.....
     
  10. Pie4Weebl

    Pie4Weebl Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    Well, whatever way you go (don't get an ETC anything) just make sure all of your LDs are trained up on it enough, that they can help a tour guy who doesn't know that desk.
     
  11. RonHebbard

    RonHebbard Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Am I detecting a hint of bitterness here? Have you forgotten to drink the CB Kool-Aid today??
    Oooh! I'd better be careful. I MAY get myself deleted again.
    Toodleoo!
    Ron Hebbard.
     
  12. techieman33

    techieman33 Well-Known Member

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    I'll agree on ETC not being the way to go. If you were all theater then sure it's part of the conversation. In a multipurpose space it gets quickly left in the dust by the MA, HOG, AVO, or Chamsys desk.
     
  13. SteveB

    SteveB Well-Known Member

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    No, Victor has it right, ETC is absolutely the wrong desk (of anything they make) for this application. I've busked with ML's for 6 years now on an Ion and it's just painful sometime, for a console I otherwise love.
     
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  14. John Palmer

    John Palmer Member

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    I'll speak up for the ETC Cobalt. I love the desk for busking shows and theatre. It is very fast when designing and programming on the fly.
    The drawback is that you need to have people trained to program it because most people are unfamiliar with it. I have gotten LD's up and programming on it in a few minutes, but there is A GREAT DEAL of hate for the RPN programming syntax. A well laid out house file and the touchscreens make it easier to get going.
    I just saw the new Chamsys desk. It was pretty impressive, and the price point was phenomenal. Phil and I discussed as a matter of fact the issue with LD's being freaked out because the house desk wasn't the ... that they were used to operating. I have dealt with people that hate the Avo, or the Hog, or the Ion, or the whatever. I don't lose any sleep over it anymore.
    Computer based systems are great for traveling and having what you want with you. A dedicated console is IMO a better option for a venue.
    Take care,
    John
     
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  15. express

    express Active Member

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    Can't we really say that a Hog IS something from ETC nowadays..?
     
  16. Colin Bishop

    Colin Bishop Church AVL Technician and HS Student Premium Member

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    I think we can, and should...
     
  17. DavidJones

    DavidJones Member

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    While MA2 is really the standard in music touring, if you have small enough acts that they cannot afford to tour with their own desk, and the other venues in the area have laughable rigs, then I don't think the choice of a desk is REALLY important. There are a few pretty decent venues around me(600-2500 cap) that have Martin Desks. Not a lot of touring guys know them, but the house staff is knowledgeable enough to program whatever a tour needs.

    While I think that everyone should have an MA2, because of its freaking awesome, but even an MA2Light often costs more than the entire light rig. A hog will work, even if not nearly as popular as the MA some a fair amount of touring guys/gals will have used it in the past and be somewhat comfortable. On the performance/budget side, a lot of young club LD's have started with Chamsys, because it's powerful and FREE. So there is some familiarity. I think there will be a pretty big uptick in Chamsys use now that Chauvet has bought and is distributing them, with aggressive pricing.

    I think If your talent buyer is red-lining through most of the hospitality rider, then what lighting console you have is probably much lower on the priority list as far as touring staff are concerned.

    But yeah, don't get an ETC. Its great for theatre, but completely wrong for music/entertainment/etc.
     
  18. Judge

    Judge Active Member

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    Occupation:
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    As David says above. I think you are both overthinking this thing as well as making assumptions and second guessing what visiting LDs will be familiar with.
    If anyone is from Europe they will be familiar with Avolites or ChamSys most likely - much more so than Hog. And at the level you are operating at in terms of lights and stage size you certainly dont need an MA2, as nice as they are. It would not be money well spent IMHO.

    Consider an Avolites Tiger Touch - its fast and compact and will do everything you need and then some. If you want more faders then there is the Arena.
    ChamSys are excellent value and very easy to learn (unlike MA) The MQ80 is a good start but if you want to spend more and get something really impressive then look at the new MQ500.
     
    Old School 512 likes this.
  19. Old School 512

    Old School 512 Member

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    An ETC console, that was an old friends idea who hates new desks and computers (retired now). I was stuck in the mid 90s with 2 ETC Expressions for industrial shows and commercial shoots. I then had 2 huge Lepricons for live shows/music and abuse. It was fun as they were new at the time but it wasn't until I put my job on the line did I find a real console. I bet that a Flying Pig Systems from HES would rent out more than any console we had in stock. Based on solid fact that moving head fixtures would one day dominate the market. Shows with literally hundreds of Par 64s Miles of Socopex cable and military amphenol connectors (one for every 6 pars) along with banks of dimmers backstage was getting ridiculous and there days numbered. When one VL5 or other moving head fixtures could wipe out banks of par cans my point and job were secured. I continued and retired on a HOG 1k console. Now I find myself immersed in HOG, MA and possibly the Avolites OS as there are some decent used consoles for sale. So skip from On PC to a used console, decisions decisions. Thank You all for your input, any other console related info before we drop cash in the fall when most equipment comes off the road.
     
  20. Old School 512

    Old School 512 Member

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    I was actually ignorant to the Chamsys line as I thought it was club equipment. However going to there site was an eye opener I will check into them. Thanks for your time.
     

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