ProSoundWeb Community

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

Pages: 1 2 [All]   Go Down

Author Topic: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.  (Read 549 times)

Tim Weaver

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2555
  • College Station, Texas
    • Daniela Weaver Photography
Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« on: July 28, 2020, 03:17:45 pm »

So, I have a small 1 universe rig in our youth room. Chamsys MagicQPC>Chamsys Mini Wing>Chauvet Splitter>lights.

I was having this problem so I went in and trimmed all the fat out of the rig. The Splitter was in a terrible place, so I moved it up the chain (one line between mini wing and splitter now) and branched out to all of the fixtures. My biggest chain of fixtures is like 10 pieces now. I removed tons of extra dmx and adaptors. I removed all the janky chinese fixtures. I have made it about as simple as I possibly can. Yet still the whole rig blinks at random times.

I'm thinking that it may not be a DMX issue like I first thought. Has anyone had an issue with a PC based desk causing problems? Could it be the Mini Wing? I have a chamsys dongle I could check it with I suppose.

Any ideas? I'm not sure where to go from here.
Logged
Bullwinkle: This is the amplifier, which amplifies the sound. This is the Preamplifier which, of course, amplifies the pree's.

John L Nobile

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2048
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2020, 03:19:48 pm »

So, I have a small 1 universe rig in our youth room. Chamsys MagicQPC>Chamsys Mini Wing>Chauvet Splitter>lights.

I was having this problem so I went in and trimmed all the fat out of the rig. The Splitter was in a terrible place, so I moved it up the chain (one line between mini wing and splitter now) and branched out to all of the fixtures. My biggest chain of fixtures is like 10 pieces now. I removed tons of extra dmx and adaptors. I removed all the janky chinese fixtures. I have made it about as simple as I possibly can. Yet still the whole rig blinks at random times.

I'm thinking that it may not be a DMX issue like I first thought. Has anyone had an issue with a PC based desk causing problems? Could it be the Mini Wing? I have a chamsys dongle I could check it with I suppose.

Any ideas? I'm not sure where to go from here.

Do you have a DMX terminator on the last light in the chain?
Logged

Don T. Williams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 853
  • Midas Pro 1 & 2, M32, dbTech T12, T8, S30, DM12
    • Q Systems Music & Sound
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2020, 05:14:11 pm »

Tim I would definitely check it with the dongle.  Is the cable between the mini wing and the splitter a "real" DMX cable?  I would also plug the main cable coming from the wing directly to each "chain" of light by unplugging that chain from the splitter output and plugging directly to that cable.  If every "chain" of light still has the problem its before the splitter.  I have also had problems where I used the "thru" output on a splitter which has no isolation.  The individual outputs should isolate but something bad on the "thru" can cause havoc.  You could also have a bad splitter.  I've seen that happen.
Logged

Dave Garoutte

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2276
  • San Rafael, CA
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2020, 05:20:34 pm »

I've seen a single wonky fixture cause issues on the whole chain.
Is the entire setup blinking, or just one split?
Another way to split is using Donner receivers, which isolate each leg; also saves a ton of cable.
Logged
Nothing can be made idiot-proof; only idiot resistant.

Events.  Stage, PA, Lighting and Backline rentals.
Chauvet dealer.  Home of the Angler.
Inventor.  And now, Streaming Video!

Tim Weaver

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2555
  • College Station, Texas
    • Daniela Weaver Photography
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2020, 05:25:41 pm »

Do you have a DMX terminator on the last light in the chain?
Which chain? lol

There's 5 different chains of lights off the splitter.

And no, there's no terminators anywhere, but I've never actually seen a terminator fix a problem. Not on modern lights anyway.
Logged
Bullwinkle: This is the amplifier, which amplifies the sound. This is the Preamplifier which, of course, amplifies the pree's.

Tim Weaver

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2555
  • College Station, Texas
    • Daniela Weaver Photography
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2020, 05:26:45 pm »

I've seen a single wonky fixture cause issues on the whole chain.
Is the entire setup blinking, or just one split?
Another way to split is using Donner receivers, which isolate each leg; also saves a ton of cable.

Entire rig.
Logged
Bullwinkle: This is the amplifier, which amplifies the sound. This is the Preamplifier which, of course, amplifies the pree's.

Tim Weaver

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2555
  • College Station, Texas
    • Daniela Weaver Photography
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2020, 05:29:27 pm »

Tim I would definitely check it with the dongle.  Is the cable between the mini wing and the splitter a "real" DMX cable?  I would also plug the main cable coming from the wing directly to each "chain" of light by unplugging that chain from the splitter output and plugging directly to that cable.  If every "chain" of light still has the problem its before the splitter.  I have also had problems where I used the "thru" output on a splitter which has no isolation.  The individual outputs should isolate but something bad on the "thru" can cause havoc.  You could also have a bad splitter.  I've seen that happen.

It should be DMX cable, but honestly I din't install that particular cable. I'll double check.

I will throw the dongle on it and watch it for a while.

I'm not using the "thru" output, but I am doing a split at one of the iso outs. I'm using both the 3 pin and the 5 pin out on that channel. I know that's frowned upon. But it's blinking everywhere and not just that chain.

Could be a bad splitter I guess.
Logged
Bullwinkle: This is the amplifier, which amplifies the sound. This is the Preamplifier which, of course, amplifies the pree's.

Debbie Dunkley

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5374
  • Central North Carolina
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2020, 05:54:27 pm »

I've seen a single wonky fixture cause issues on the whole chain.


Me too... it's the weirdest thing. More than once I have had one specific lamp (or a few lamps) behave strangely, flashing etc,  only to find in fact it is a totally different lamp in the chain that is the defective one. Same with cables..
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 05:56:31 pm by Debbie Dunkley »
Logged
A young child says to his mother, "Mom, when I grow up I'm going to be a musician." She replies, "Well honey, you know you can't do both."

Jeff Lelko

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1520
  • Cape Canaveral, FL
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2020, 06:27:12 pm »

Hey Tim, thinking outside the box here - are you sure it's not coming from MagicQ?  More than once I've unknowingly had something running off-screen that was causing what I thought was a system glitch... 

Also, is it just the intensities that are blinking or are other attributes running wild as well?  I'm trying to recall the where and when, but I seem to remember noting that a version of MagicQ now randomly flashes intensities to prohibit professional use under certain circumstances.  With a wing that shouldn't be a problem if it even exists, but just giving you a few more things to dig into!  Hope this helps!
Logged

Scott Hofmann

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 358
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2020, 07:23:31 pm »

Does the software have a provision to adjust the DMX output rate? Could be that the fixtures can't update fast enough and you need to set to a slower data rate.
If you have access to another console or a DMX tester that would be something to try.
Logged
Scott Hofmann

Caleb Dueck

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1303
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2020, 08:24:24 pm »

Does the software have a provision to adjust the DMX output rate? Could be that the fixtures can't update fast enough and you need to set to a slower data rate.
If you have access to another console or a DMX tester that would be something to try.

I've come across this issue with low-end fixtures (Chauvet DJ level or lower), but not Chauvet Pro or better.  Doug Fleenor DMX Decelerator fixes it. 

Sounds like a DMX issue between the computer and the distro if it affects all legs. 

I always spec a DMX terminator for the end of each DMX run. 

Cheap fixtures or bad cables are common issues - but tend to only affect their respective legs.

The cheaper the fixtures, the lower the total length per leg and quantity of fixtures will work. 

The last time I saw all the lights blink like you described - it was the an issue with the DMX signal between the computer and the splitter. 

Logged
Experience is something you get right after you need it.

John L Nobile

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2048
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2020, 11:49:46 am »

Which chain? lol

There's 5 different chains of lights off the splitter.

And no, there's no terminators anywhere, but I've never actually seen a terminator fix a problem. Not on modern lights anyway.

I guess my lights are old. My installer/LD always adds a terminator to the last fixture in a chain.

Here's something that may shed "light" on a terminator

A “DMX Terminator” is used when you are using a lot of DMX fixtures on one single DMX line (Universe). It removes a lot of noise and flickering on the DMX Tx line which improves the reliability of your fixtures.
When a DMX signal has traveled to the end of your DMX line if it is not terminated you get something which is referred to as a “shadow” signal bouncing back along the line which can cause all sorts of problems with you DMX fixtures.
The longer the DMX cable run the greater the risk of getting this bounce back.
Rule of thumb DMX lines should always be terminated.
It is often claimed that DMX devices work without termination, however this is generally due to luck rather than good design.
If the addition of a terminator causes problems in your chain, it is likely down to poor quality DMX Cable. Due to the nature of the DMX protocol, the devices are very sensitive to the quality of the cable and connectors, and misuse of this equipment can cause problems.
Logged

Don T. Williams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 853
  • Midas Pro 1 & 2, M32, dbTech T12, T8, S30, DM12
    • Q Systems Music & Sound
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2020, 04:44:30 pm »

Tim, using both the 3 pin and 5 pin outputs has always caused trouble for my clients.  You might try moving one of those cables to the thru output to see if that solves the problem.  I too have had problems where a single cable or bad light causes everything to be wonky, but usually splitters isolate or solve the problem.  Just a guess, but a missing signal or power ground, or incorrectly wired power source might also cause an entire rig to act up.  Let us know what you find.
Logged

Brian Jojade

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1685
    • HappyMac Digital Electronics
Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2020, 06:35:27 pm »

If the entire rig goes into blackout at the exact same time, that's more an indicator of the console sending rogue signal. The way DMX works is it sends out a value to each DMX address sequentially.  The light knows what channel to listen for and when it sees the signal, it sets itself appropriately, then waits until it's channel comes around the rotation again. If you lose DMX signal completely, the light will either remain where it was, or go to blackout mode, depending on how it's set.  Each manufacturer and model of light will have a different amount of time before it gives up waiting for that next command.  If all lights are blacking out in unison, that's unlikely to be the cause.

It's possible that mis-termination or a flaky cable could be messing with the data stream. However, usually this results in overall erratic behavior in the lights.  Weird movement, random colors etc.  For it to send blackout signal to all the lights as the only fault while not impossible is very unlikely.

The same thing with an instrument sending rogue signals.  Usually those problems are more wonk than simple blackout.

Now, if your controller is getting cranky and instead of sending out the appropriate stream of signal and just sends out all zeros, well, that's going to cause all lights to go to zero immediately and in perfect sync.  If the processor is overloaded and the console just doesn't know what numbers to send, that might be how it's going to react.
Logged
Brian Jojade

ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Entire rig blinks off/on at random.
« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2020, 06:35:27 pm »


Pages: 1 2 [All]   Go Up
 



Page created in 0.059 seconds with 22 queries.