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Abbeyman

Getting my head round fixtures

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Recently bought a Leap Frog desk and with a bit of help from the forum changed the battery and updated the software so its now good to go. I can use it to do all the basics that I could do years ago with a Sirius 24 (pre dmx) desk.

 

In a way that's all I need for the moment as I only have LED par cans of two types and bog standard tungsten lights to control at present and can use generic channels for them all but would like to be able to get to grips with the fixtures control part of the desk.

 

I suppose the first question would be - is there any point until I need to control moving head stuff?

 

If there is then I could do with some help understanding the overall concept which would then make following the manual easier. I kind of get the bit about teaching the desk the profile of a fixture or getting it from a library but then what? How do you make use of this in a scene? (sorry for the dumb questions here)

 

Taking a particular fixture type that I have - Cameo Studio PAR 64 Can (RGBW) its in the profile library I downloaded but reports the fixture as having 6 parameters needing 6 dmx addresses.

The Cameo manual indicates the fixture can be used in 2,3,4 or 7 channel modes but not six so I'm getting a bit lost here.

 

Andy

 

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Hi Andy,

Glad you got the desk up and running! Also glad you got the floppy working on the PC as it sounds like we need to build a new fixture definition for your PAR!

I'd recommend patching your LED PAR as a fixture - otherwise you'll eat up 6 (or 7 or whatever it needs) of your faders for each unit which means you'll struggle to keep 2-preset operation for your generics. Also accessing strobes and other functions of your LEDs is much easier as a fixture and you can use colour palettes! Don't panic it will all become second nature soon!

Regards,
Kevin

Tried to PM you, but seems you need a few more posts first before your messenger is enabled. If you like, do you want a phone chat on this?

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If this is the manual for your Cameo Studio PAR 64 RGBW:

 

http://adamhall.invaliddomain.de/out/media/downloads/MARKEN/CAMEO/CLPST64Q8W/CLPST64Q8W_Cameo_Bedienungsanleitung_EN_DE_FR_ES_IT_PL.pdf

 

Then here is a fixture file [see bottom of this post] for all 5 modes (2ch, 3ch x2, 4ch, 7ch)... (you'll need to shorten the IFT file filename for a floppy, sorry!).

 

Copy it onto a floppy. On the desk:

1. Go into Super User (hold + and - and press Enter)

2. Desk Setup

3. Assign Fixtures

4. Use + and - to pick a fixture number -> lets use 1...

5. Down arrow (V)

6. Minus (-) -> "Select Fixture from Floppy Disk"

7. Enter

8. + and - to list "Cameo"

9. Down arrow (V)

10. + and - to select the fixture variant you want - let's say the 7 channel one

11. Enter. Should now see the yellow LED lit in Fixture button 1.

12. Up arrow (^) (now on "Exit"), Enter

 

Now need to patch the fixture to the required DMX address.

 

13. Down, Down (on "Patch Functions"), Enter

14. I tend to use Manual Patch...

15. Click the Fixture 1 button (red LED will light), this should jump the patch list down to Fixture 1.

16. You now need to set the DMX address for your Cameo PAR. Let's say "49". You can press "+" and the desk will give you "049" which is the next available address after the 48 generic channels. If you've got an external keyboard attached, you can type the DMX start address. Whatever method, this number needs to match the one you've set on the back of the Cameo PAR unit.

17. Down arrow (on "Exit"), Enter

18. Up arrow (on "Exit"), Enter

19. Down x5 (on "Exit Desk Setup"), Enter

20. "Desk Setup Modified. Save Changes?" [OK] Enter

21. Up arrow (on "Exit Super User"), Enter

 

OK assignment and patch done.

 

Click "Outputs" button (I'm hoping you've got an external monitor attached).

Click Fixture 1 button - red LED comes on and Monitor should now show "Fixture 1: Cameo StPAR RGBW : 7 ch"

 

If you press the "Home" button then the PAR should come on at full brightness RGB "white". You will see under "Fixture Brightness Outputs" that 01 has "FF" under it (FF=full) and under the "Fixture 1" banner, Dimmer 100%, Red 255, Gree 255 Blue 255 White 0 Color1 0 Strobe 0.

 

The Wheel LCD middle wheel has "Dimmer 100%" above it. Play with the wheel.

 

Click "Colour" button. Wheel LCD now has Red, Green, Blue. Click the Colour button again, now you get White and Color1 (i.e. a second "page" of colour attributes).

 

Click "Beamshape", middle wheel has Strobe.

 

Play with the colours and strobe. When you're happy, set up your generics on the faders, click Program and you've saved your first cue of generics and fixtures!

 

Here endeth the first lesson. Sorry if you already knew most of this........!

 

 

Kevin

cameo_studio_par64_rgbw.ift

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Thanks Kevin - you are an excellent mentor ! BTW it always pays to assume the learner knows next to nothing!

 

I'd kind of worked out how to include a fixture in a cue using a profile for a par can left on the desk by previous owner but had no way of testing it other than watching the dmx outputs on the screen - yes I have a VDU and keyboard attached.

 

Re the file you attached - that's exactly the Cameo par can even down to the pic included in the fixture file - how neat is that!

Looking at it in fixture editor on my PC also provides a useful template of what has to be produced / included in such a file which is really useful.

 

I'll have to pick up a couple of different fixtures from the venue sometime this week to try it all out at home where the dining room table has been requisitioned for the desk and VDU at present. When I do I'll try and create a file for the flat pars in use but expect another cry for help if I can't manage it. Maybe there's one that I can download but I need to crack being able to produce one from scratch as a personal goal.

 

Your patience and help is really appreciated.

 

Andy

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Re the file you attached - that's exactly the Cameo par can even down to the pic included in the fixture file - how neat is that!

Looking at it in fixture editor on my PC also provides a useful template of what has to be produced / included in such a file which is really useful.

 

The image is not of any use for LeapFrog, but show up during fixture selection on FLX (and probably the other higher-end Z88 consoles), so I like to include it :-)

 

I'm glad you're using the Fixture Editor - it's really easy to put together your own fixture.

 

The "defaults" that I've picked up from Jon along the way include:

 

- Dimmer Special=Dimmer, Home=255

- For any fixture or mode that does not include a Dimmer channel as a mapped DMX address, then add a Dimmer and set it to "virtual" and mark all of the R/G/B/W/A/UV etc as scaled by virtual intensity.

- Red, Green, Blue set the Special to Red-Positive etc and Home=255 (==RGB white)

- White or Amber or UV set the Special to Other Colour and Home=0

- Cyan, Magenta, Yellow set Home=0 (==white as subtractive)

- Hue set Home=0, Sat set Home=255

- Any generalised "colour macro" is named "Color1" - harks back to the MAC500 type fixtures I think.

- Filling in DMX ranges and "colour defined" and "is dark" on the Detail tab is used on the FLX and higher consoles

 

- Strobes and similar beam operations go under Beamshape

 

- For the Frog and Jester series make sure you allocate parameters to 3-wheel groups. To support the Illusion series, allocate the 4-wheel groups too.

 

- The "long name" of the fixture needs a constant root part then the channel variants after a colon

- The "short name" is used by the Frog (and Jester?) consoles

 

I tend to make the most complex mode first then copy and strip down for the other modes. Remember to correct the "DMX allocate" value for only the required number of DMX addresses.

 

http://zero88.com/forum/topic/7375-spotlight-fresneled150-rgbw-fixture-profile/#entry28927

 

http://zero88.com/forum/topic/7329-fixture-request-flx/#entry28698

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Progress being made on the learning curve front.

 

Removed the legacy fixtures that came with the desk and installed the relevant number of Cameo fixtures from your file.

Used the fixture editor to analyse the file you produced vs the data in the Cameo fixture manual - now I understand!

So used the editor to create a file for a PULSE flat PAR56 from scratch. (It's a basic cheap up lighter purchased before my time)

 

A couple of questions come to mind..

 

Creating the file for the PULSE PAR 56 I skipped including mode 1 which is 3 channel RGB on the basis that adding a virtual brightness channel would simply replicate mode2 which is 4 channel brightness + RGB.

 

There's only one other mode (8 channel) where Ch 8 introduces a delay in responding to the brightness channel if set at 251 - 255. I can't see I need this so set to zero is fine but do I need to include it as an attribute with default to 0 or can I ignore it?

 

Ch 7 is used to set an ID address in the range 1 - 66 )This fixture is aimed at the DJ market so I guess it must be useful in that context but how best to handle it on the frog?

 

Have just brought home some fixtures to try on the desk maybe tonight so fingers crossed.

Andy

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Creating the file for the PULSE PAR 56 I skipped including mode 1 which is 3 channel RGB on the basis that adding a virtual brightness channel would simply replicate mode2 which is 4 channel brightness + RGB.

The only advantage is that you use one less DMX channel but have exactly the same control of the fixture.

 

There's only one other mode (8 channel) where Ch 8 introduces a delay in responding to the brightness channel if set at 251 - 255. I can't see I need this so set to zero is fine but do I need to include it as an attribute with default to 0 or can I ignore it?

The problem is that it's the last channel of the fixture, which means the console will think it's only a 7 channel fixture, which can get confusing as the console will allow DMX addresses to be "overlapped" on this 8th channel. To get around this, double click the "DMX Allocate" (which in the image below is "3", but for you should be "7". That will open the small popup, where you can change it to "8".
DMX.png

Ch 7 is used to set an ID address in the range 1 - 66 )This fixture is aimed at the DJ market so I guess it must be useful in that context but how best to handle it on the frog?

Again, I'd just ignore it if you don't need it. Alternatively, just put it as a "beamshape" parameter called ID, and ignore the "special" drop down box.

 

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Hi Andy,

 

Some questions not clear without the manual - can you link it?

 

The 4 channel mode uses a dimming algorithm internal to the fixture. In theory this should be better (i.e. smoother) than the desk just scaling the R/G/B values. On a cheap fixture there might not be much difference, but on a "professional" fixture, the internal dimmer should be much better suited to dimming LED elements. Give it a go!

 

I dont understand Channel 8 - would need to look at the manual. Sounds a bit awkward having a "config" setting at the top end of the dimmer channel - I try to avoid those! I see Jon's just posted - as he says, you can't just casually ignore DMX addresses the fixture will decode, because if you patch it and take 7 DMX addresses, then the fixture channel 8 will respond to DMX data you intended for another dimmer or fixture listening at that address. Define the parameter or use "DMX Allocate" to say you need 8 DMX addresses but are only defining the function of 7 of them. Personally I'd define it but not use it. Remember to allocate it to a wheel though.

 

No idea what Ch7 is all about - again, would need the manual.

 

 

Kevin

 

I think this is the unit?

 

http://www.farnell.com/datasheets/1685456.pdf

 

Ch7 ID is a sub-addressing feature for controllers with limited DMX address range. Your LeapFrog has 2 DMX universes, I can't see you needing this feature unless you intend buying a lot of these fixtures (please don't!) Map it as a Beamshape parameter just to keep it under control, with Home=0.

 

Ch8 I'd map as a "Beamshape" parameter, then at least you have control over that channel so there is no chance of it going haywire, and you can dial up the delayed-response feature if you fancied.

 

ps - Good luck, I don't think you'll find those cheap LED units based on standard 5mm or 10mm LEDs much use. Maybe a bit of on-stage eye candy, but pretty much no use for lighting actors (no beam as such, multicolour shadows, poor overall brightness, horrible RGB white...).

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Thanks guys

 

I did set the dmx channels to 8 when using the editor to avoid dmx overlap which at the moment displays 8(6) if I recall. I assumed this is because I have not set anything up for the last two channels and hence the question.

 

Point taken re 3 channel + virtual brightness vs 4 channel with brightness so in essence best to include it for possible future use even though dmx addresses are not going to be at a premium at present.

 

I've been trying to puzzle out how to include an attachment. I assume it goes to my media first but I don't seem to have the option to upload - is this because I haven't made enough posts yet (something I've come across on forums before).

 

Instead here's a link to a download I found on the net http://www.farnell.com/datasheets/1685456.pdf

 

Andy

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For manuals, best to link as you have.

 

To upload, need to click the "More Reply Options" tab at the bottom right when doing "Reply". Then you use "Choose file" and then remember to click "Attach This File"!

 

I need to work out how to do those multiple quote boxes that Jon does on reply! I fiddled on my last reply but just couldn't get it to work!

 

As you're a new member your Personal Messenger doesn't seem to work - maybe you need 10 or so posts before this gets enabled - bet you're about there now!

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Ok so having read the advice I finished the PULSE 8 channel by including the last two parameters under beam shape, setting default to 0 but not allocating to a wheel. On saving the file there was an alert to the fact that no wheels were allocated but saved it anyway and I've tried it on the desk - seems to work fine as does the Cameo fixture file. At least with the PULSE file I've managed creating that one from scratch in the editor with just a bit of help which was my goal.

 

 

 

ps - Good luck, I don't think you'll find those cheap LED units based on standard 5mm or 10mm LEDs much use. Maybe a bit of on-stage eye candy, but pretty much no use for lighting actors (no beam as such, multicolour shadows, poor overall brightness, horrible RGB white...).

 

I think I mentioned the 'being bought before my time bit' - so lets not go there as there are twelve of them!

To be fair they were bought to add some colour to the architectural lighting for certain events rather than stage lighting - the venue can be worked out I think from my user name and location and I recently volunteered to join the tech team there doing lighting for concerts so its a matter of working with what there is at present together with equipment that's mine.

 

Thanks Kevin and Jon for getting me this far with the frog desk which will help me take what can be done there ever upwards I hope.

 

Andy

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