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  1. Hello everybody! by reading the forum from time to time, I got the impression that a couple of users are not familiar or 100% satisfied with the effect engine of zerOS. Maybe I'm wrong with my impression (let me know), but I would like to take this occasion to talk with the other FLX users (or other zerOS-consoles) about possible improvements. The current effect engine has a scientific approach in the sense of how it works. Mainly it is based on mathematical functions to chance fixture parameters. This makes it flexible and powerful. On the other hand, this seems to be less user-friendly and intuitive than the effect engines of zero88's competitors. In my opinion, an effect engine has to give the designer or operator a very easy and effective way to select and configure often used effects. E.g. a rainbow, moving a couple of fixtures in a wave, or a fly in / out. Let me use this examples to show what I mean: Rainbow: The build in rainbow effect-palette does not include the primary colours red, green and blue alone. There are only mixed colors with at least two primary colors active. This is caused by the underlaying waveforms. From the designers point of view a rainbow should go like this: From red to yellow, than reducing the red part going to green, than keeping green on and increasing blue going to cyan and so on. It's very hard (if not impossible) do to exactly this with the currently used waveform-based effects. Moving fixtures in a wave: Select a couple of fixtures, apply a sine effect to tilt and wonder: All fixtures are moving equal. Where is the sinewave? Hidden by an zero-offset. This could be easily fixed (and is no problem at all for experienced users) by applying an offset using Shift+<Wheel>. Imagine the selected fixtures are part of a truss-circle - so we would like that the first fixture exactly follows the last one to get a closed, stepless wave. I found it very hard to find the correct offset value in such cases. Sometimes, I used half an hour for that before I finally give up... Fly in/out: In this case, we have to sync different attributes and have to care about the moving speed of the fixture: First the fixture has to go to the top tilt value with zero intensity. Than we should wait a moment so that the fixture can perform the movement (this is important!). Now we can open the shutter and move to bottom, close the shutter at bottom and repeat. Synchronisation between the waveforms for the different attributes is hard to reach. Wait between steps to let the fixture move is not possible. Possible improvements: Use intuitive units for effect parameters: Speed in BPM or Hz, Offset in degree, Size in %. There are no units at all currently. Thus it's hard to get an understanding of what the effect engine is doing. Implement a function to automatically spread the offset between all selected or a specific # of fixtures More improvements could be made if the approach is changed: Don't limit effects to waveforms: E.g. self (or build-in) step patterns could fasten the programming of chasers. Develop new creative approaches for creating effects. Think from the designers point of view (often this couldn't be done by programmers) Provide build-in effects not only as palettes, but also as a quick solution for often needed exercises: Fly in, Fly out, Rainbow - all those effects where it is not possible to do them perfectly with waveforms, because parameters are depending on each other and so on. Those effects should be configurable with different parameters - depending on which parameters it could be possible worth for the designer to have influence on I hope you understand this post as constructive criticism - this is my intention. All in all I'm glad to use the FLX. Especially I really appreciate that you are interested in your users needs. This is why I wrote this - hoping to initiate a step in the FLX's way to be the perfect lighting console. It's not in my nature to write long (and complicated) texts in english language. I hope you could easily understand my intention and that Google Translator hasn't fooled me. At last I'd like to invite every user to participate at this discussion. Best regards Jan
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