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Author Topic: D4DMX dimmer problem  (Read 9162 times)

Darrel Hayes

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D4DMX dimmer problem
« on: November 28, 2010, 07:17:33 pm »

I have 5 D4DMX dimmer packs on location at a church preparing for an early Christmas celebration.  Proper DMX 5-pin cables are in use.  3 are functioning fine but 2 are responding w/ pulsing AC similar to chase.  Channels are responding properly but flashing.  If the 2 packs are replaced, then the new dimmer functions properly.  The problem has been traced to the dimmer packs itself.  Since both dimmer packs have the same problem, could this be a setting issue that I am unaware of?  
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Darrel Hayes

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2010, 11:25:09 am »

Spoke w/ Leviton Service this morning.  The only suggestion was to send the units for factory servicing.  Has anyone else experienced a similar problem with this model?

A little more information, I have noticed that the problem packs have only 2 options from the mode button where the problem-free packs have 5 options from the mode button. The 2 options are A:001 & P:16.  The 5 options are A:001, P:16, CL: ,L:OFF, & in:d.
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Silas Pradetto

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2010, 12:33:51 pm »

The "A" would indicate DMX mode and the first channel number. If they are all in "A" mode and properly addressed, and they still have this issue, factory service is definitely needed. If they aren't in "A" mode, they're probably in some sort of master/slave or auto mode and will not pass DMX appropriately.
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Darrel Hayes

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2010, 02:38:39 pm »

Thanks, Silas.  I found the problem.  It appears that all DMX consoles and all DMX dimmer packs are not fully compatible.  In my case, only the older D4-DMX dimmer packs had issues with 4 different consoles.  Only the Leprecon LP624 console worked with all packs.  

Now my next problems today seems to be programming an older Chauvet Pro-D6 dimmer pack for DMX (gotta love trade-ins) and locating egg strobes (I sold all of mine 2 years ago and now I have 3 rental requests).

Below is a copy of the e-mail I sent to Leviton:

Just wanted to update.   I have continued to troubleshoot after my last call.   As we discussed, I have the 2 problem D4-DMX’s along with a problem-free D4DMX on my test bench.   I had tried 3 different consoles with the same results.   The suggested sources of problems were either dimmers, cables, or console.   All were ruled out by process of elimination except for the packs.  The last tech I spoke with mentioned a console issue in passing.  After reconsidering, I replaced the previous consoles with a Leprecon LP624.  All issues were resolved and all dimmer packs are working properly.

I find this extremely interesting as I had already discovered that the MPX inputs of the newer D4-DMX results in a similar flickering output when used with the LP624 console.  The ND4600 packs work properly from the MPX output of the LP624.  Both packs also worked properly when used with MPX or DMX from an NSI console.

I just wanted to update and commend your Technical Support department for their assistance.   I will continue to use and recommend your products as they have proved to be a cost-effective solution.  I will be posting this message in the Lighting Forum of the PSW Sound Reinforcement Forums.   I appreciate good customer service and yours has been among the best in both response and assistance.  Thanks again.

Darrel Hayes
DHA Sound & Lighting
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James Feenstra

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2010, 12:49:50 am »

anything that speaks dmx should be compatible with anything that outputs dmx

if you're sending dmx signal to something and it's responding, it probably doesn't speak dmx, but some other language, like amx or mpx (like you stated)
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James Feenstra
Lighting, Audio and Special Effects Design

Darrel Hayes

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2010, 12:19:17 am »

I am not sure that I understand.  The dimmer packs always responded to channel control from the console but with a flickering light (AC voltage).  The D4-DMX dimmers and Leprecon LP624 console have both MPX and DMX in/out.  The Elation console had only DMX out.  DMX out of console into DMX in of dimmer pack via 5-pin XLR cable.  The Elation console worked perfectly with Chauvet DMX4 dimmer packs but had flickering isues with older D4-DMX dimmer packs.

I thought that DMX was DMX but the Leviton service did mention compatibilty issues with older D4-DMX dimmers.  I had been using MPX and analog control but began switching over to DMX a few years ago so I am still learning.  
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James Feenstra

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2010, 11:30:31 am »

dmx IS dmx...there aren't multiple versions of it

the refresh rate out of the console, however, can vary

that shouldn't effect your ability to control lights via dmx though
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James Feenstra
Lighting, Audio and Special Effects Design

E. Lee Dickinson

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2010, 11:45:35 pm »

It's been a looooong time, but I have seen old dimmers that couldn't keep up with a too-fast refresh rate.

Specifically, a rack of CD80s that pulsed, as the OP has described, until I change the refresh rate setting in a Hog.

Seems to me it might be possible that a cheaper dimmer pack could be having trouble with the refresh rate.
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E. Lee Dickinson
Advanced Visual Production Inc.
sound - lighting - video - design
www.avpric.com

Darrel Hayes

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2010, 01:00:04 am »

Thanks for the help guys.  The problem has been isolated between my older Leviton D4-DMX dimmer packs and the Elation/Chauvet consoles.   I will just make sure that my Leprecon LP624 console is the only console driving both older and newer Leviton D4-DMX dimmer packs.  The Elation/Chauvet consoles will drive the Chauvet DMX-4 dimmer packs.  Problem resolved.
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E. Lee Dickinson

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Re: D4DMX dimmer problem
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2010, 07:33:41 pm »

Here is another data point for you: our elation scene setter 8 will not control our Chauvet colorpallates. The scene setter 48, however, has no problem. Go figure.
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E. Lee Dickinson
Advanced Visual Production Inc.
sound - lighting - video - design
www.avpric.com
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