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crown_vic

First tour with a Fat Frog... any hints?

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Hey folks,

 

I've had enough experience doing local one-offs with a Fat Frog to feel comfortable taking one out on the road for my first rock tour as LD.

 

Just curious if anyone has any words of wisdom to offer when touring with a Frog? Normally when I do rock and roll on the Frog it's in the same venue every time, and I'm busking on music I'm not familiar with. In this case I have the opportunity to write a whole show to fit the music, so I would especially love any advice on how to build my show so as to simplify the process of updating positions for each venue?

 

I have visions of 2 hours every day updating every position +effect for 20 songs, surely there's an easier way?

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

BTW, I'm working with each venue's house rig for stage wash, plus my four Mac250 Entours on the stage for movers. Mostly I'm looking at programming for the 250s, for what that's worth.

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You've already hit on the biggest time saver for touring shows - using position palettes. If you're stringent and stick to using only position palettes for all the positions in your show, then you can just turn up at the venue, rig, then update the position palettes and the changes will filter through your cuestack.

 

One thing you might find useful is to get a digital camera and take a photograph of each fixture in each position, in the original venue. Then, when you tour, you've got a permenant record of what it should look like.

 

Apart from that, make sure you keep a paper copy of the show... even if its just a rough record of what goes on in each cue. Itl'l serve as a useful backup if you accidentally remove a cue or overwrite something. On the subject of backups, keep a copy from each venue. You might arrive at a new venue which has a similar setup to a previous venue so rather than making the changes again, you could reload that venues show and make the changes from there.

 

 

HTH

 

 

 

Peter

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^

 

I knew this was the right place to ask... *grin*

 

The approach you describe does mean I need to stick to 24 positions for the whole show, doesn't it? That's entirely doable, just making sure I've got this straight...

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^

The approach you describe does mean I need to stick to 24 positions for the whole show, doesn't it? That's entirely doable, just making sure I've got this straight...

 

Yes, it does. If you require more, think about doublnig up (eg having a position palette where fixture 1 is pointing at its first 'special' position and fixture 2 at its first 'special' position, even if they are different positions).

 

If you run out of position palettes, program raw data and make a note of the cues you need to update.

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As long as you store the base positions as palettes, the effects could be based on them and stored as raw data in the cues/submasters. They would pick up the updated positions and their base position would be correct in the new venue.

 

HTH

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Okay, maybe a silly question. Most of my rock and roll experience is from the Whole Hog side of the world, but it means I've got my head stuck in the Hog method of programming movers. Most of my Frog experience is corporate events with a whole bunch of single-scene looks and effects, so maybe I'm going about this all wrong, can anyone check my logic?

 

 

WHEN USING THE HOG...

 

...especially for bands with a range of musical dynamics from soft to loud (like the one I'm touring with next month), I find it very useful to store the first submaster on each page as a "brightness-only" fader, and then to store all the rest of my cuelists like so:

 

FADER 1 - Mac250 Brightness

FADER 2 - Cuelist of Mac250 Positions

FADER 3 - Cuelist of Mac250 Effects

FADER 4+ - Conventional Groups

etc...

 

With Colour and Beamshape specified directly from palettes on the fly.

 

This gives me a whole lot of flexibility to custom-build my looks through any combination of attributes (IE, build the look or start the cue with the movers blacked out, then fade up the brightness to the desired level).

 

 

WHEN USING THE FROG...

 

...this is not going to be at all possible, even in Partial Mode, is it?

 

Am I correct that with the Frog, every step of every mover look and cuelist I build will have the brightness pre-built into it? Is there no way to seperate the brightness for the movers from the rest of their attributes, onto a seperate submaster?

 

I can absolutely work around this if so, it just means a different way of approaching programming *before* I start building a 20-page show.

 

 

Thanks again for all your input, it's been really helpful to get a 'gut check' from more experienced Frog trainers...

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Hi

 

It is entirely possible to seperate out the brightness on the Frog. The method for doing this is to program all your cues involving the moving lights with the moving lights at 0%. Then, when you create your brightness submaster, detag all the fixtures and leave the brightness at full. The HTP elements of a fixture (ie the Brightness) are mixed throughout the desk on an HTP basis, so whichever submaster is highest will gain control of the fixtures brightness.

 

One thing you will find different to the Hog syntax is the fact that the submasters are not cue lists. As such, you can't have more than one position on a submaster, except as a chase. If you really need this multiple programming, you could program it as a chase set to manual trigger, using the step button to step through the various positions. This might cause you problems on a page where you have more than one of these chases... pressing Step will trigger all active chases.

 

Remember, to create a chase on a submaster, first create it as a memory and then transfer it to a submaster using the 'transfer no time' or 'transfer with time' buttons.

 

Another feature to be aware of is the ability to lock the palette pages, so that the channel flash buttons become bump buttons for the palettes without having to hold down the attribute. To do this, hold down F1 and press the attribute you wish to lock to. Now pressing each channel flash button will trigger the palette on that key. To unlock the pages, press F1 again.

 

Good luck... let us know if you have any more questions, and also let us know how you get on.

 

 

 

Peter

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All of this is making brilliant sense so far, thank you.

 

One thing you will find different to the Hog syntax is the fact that the submasters are not cue lists. As such, you can't have more than one position on a submaster, except as a chase. If you really need this multiple programming, you could program it as a chase set to manual trigger, using the step button to step through the various positions. This might cause you problems on a page where you have more than one of these chases... pressing Step will trigger all active chases.

 

...hmm. This could be troublesome, but again, logic suggests there must be a reasonably simple workaround.

 

On the Hog, I'd simply create one cuelist for each song, allowing me to playback all the movers for each song using my "brightness" fader and the Step button on my cuelist fader.

 

It sounds like there are three options to achieve this on the Frog, I wonder if you could check my logic?

 

(A) create each cue on a seperate submaster and trigger each one individually, thus limiting me to 20x12 cues for the whole show

 

(B) create a cue stack on one submaster per page, thus limiting me to a total of 20 cue stacks that I can step through (and thus 20 songs I can program specifically)

 

or

 

© would it be possible to trigger the steps through a cue stack by flicking the submaster fader past the trigger point (usually 5%)? This seems like a long shot, but not entirely illogical?

 

Or is there another method that I'm missing?

 

We're looking at a setlist of 18-24 songs a night, and it would make life considerably simpler to be able to create a cuelist for each song.

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Have you thought about using the x-playback? I know its not the traditional method of running a live show, but it could work for your needs.

 

You could program each song in a bank of cues (say:

Song1 - cues 1-20

Song2 - cues 30-50

Song3 - cues 60-80

etc

 

Once these are programmed, you would use the (big blue) Go button to trigger each stack. You could influence the brightness of the programmed fixtures using the Playback X Master.

 

To jump to a song, simply press MEMORY, then key in the number from an external keyboard and hit Enter. Then hit Go. This might actually be quicker than jumping around submaster pages.

 

One more thing. I know its obvious, but do check that you're running the latest software version on the desk. Previous software versions were limited to only 10 pages of submasters, and the behaviour of partial mode has changed significantly in recent revisions.

 

 

I should also add that what you're hoping to achieve would be much easier with a Frog2, which features 10 playbacks on the front panel, pageable 1 to 100, as well as user definable faders (subs, masters, inhibits, etc) and user definable keys (macros, palettes, cues, etc). A touchscreen and two monitor outputs (which can be USB touchscreens) give you masses of buttons for busking.

 

Oh, one more thing... unfortunately, © on your list isn't possible. Its a nice idea though... perhaps when Paul (who maintains the Frog feature list) reads this he may add it to the database of potential additions.

 

 

Best of luck with the show.

 

 

 

Peter

 

 

 

Edit:

One more thought. If you get given a set list before the gig, you could set up the Playback X using the "jump" column so that it runs sequentially throughout the gig. Using my above example, if the band decided to perform the songs in the order 1,3,2, I would place jumps as follows:

 

After cue 20, I would jump to Cue 60

After cue 80, I would jump to Cue 30

 

I hope this makes sense.

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It does make sense, and may have to be the way I go with this.

 

Otherwise, it's looking more and more like it's time to call the rental rep and figure out some way to replace the Frog with a Hog1000 or an MA Light.

 

Thanks again for your help - time to go hop on the board at the shop for a day or two, and see if I can bring this together in a way that's going to work.

 

 

Edit:

 

This looks more and more like the way to get it done. It's a whole lot less comfortable than the Hog or MA approach, but that's par for the course.

 

It occurs to me that if I'm only running the movers off the Frog, I can use the Master Fader in place of a Brightness submaster.

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Hi

 

If you feel the Frog wont do the job for you, you could always look at the Frog 2. You wil be able to achieve everything you need on this, and if you are a Hog user than the programme syntax for this is almost the same.

 

Worth a try. If you have any questions e-mail : bkelly@zero88.com

gbalessmith@zero88.com

 

Good Luck

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The reason I'm taking a Frog on this gig is my rental is from Christie Lites, whose line of consoles with moving light control is:

 

1. Fat Frog

2. MA Lite

3. Grand MA

 

Did look into renting the MA Lite instead, or cross-renting a Hog1K/Hog2, but the budget for the tour dictated that I'm taking a Frog.

 

Long as we're on the topic, does anyone in Canada rent Frog2s?

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You can contact ACT Lighting in LA and ask for Bob. He will let you know who has Frog 2 in rental stock in Canada. ACT is the American distributor for Zero 88.

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