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Author Topic: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?  (Read 1476 times)

Timothy J. Trace

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Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« on: December 29, 2020, 12:40:26 pm »

Greetings, I'm shopping low-budget wireless DMX systems for my four-tree bar band light show.

Blizzard and Donner seem to get decent reviews on Amazon, however, most of the topics here are years old. I guess I'm just that far behind the curve on adopting new technology  :D

Instruments are ADJ Ultra Hex Bars, ADJ Punch Pros, and old Chauvet effects similar to the Kinta FX. Control is D-Pro 2U and a DMX USB Pro MK2. Distribution is a Blizzard Pipeline 8-way box, but it will be shelved in my storeroom as I won't need it in the rig anymore.

AC power for the wireless DMX receivers can come from the passthrough IEC connectors on my instruments, using NEMA-15 adapters. If I end up with a battery-powered system, it will be plugged in all of the time. I don't want to deal with charging cycles and duty cycles and lifecycles.

So - here on the edge of 2020/21, is it Blizzard or Donner for the low-budget win? ... or something else?

Thank you!
« Last Edit: December 29, 2020, 01:19:01 pm by Timothy J. Trace »
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Paul G. OBrien

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2020, 01:10:10 pm »

Instruments are ADJ Ultra Hex Bars, ADJ Punch Pros, and old Chauvet effects similar to the Kinta FX. Control is D-Pro 2U and a DMX USB Pro MK2. Distribution is a Blizzard Pipeline 8-way box, to be shelved by the new wireless system.

Unless I misunderstand you don't need a hardware splitter with wireless DMX.. the wireless system is the splitter. For 4 trees you could get by with 4 receivers and 1 transmitter, all fixtures on a tree are hardwired together with the receiver on the first and a terminator on the last. Of course if you want to put a receiver in every fixture that works too, the largest event I have done used 28 wireless receivers and 1 transmitter.

I own both battery and hard wired XLR style Donner transceivers as well as some unnamed Chinese variants, and I recently outfitted some of my fixtures with internal wireless circuit boards sourced directly from china. I also own a bunch(20) of no name fixtures with built-in wireless DMX. All of this communicates flawlessly as long as all fixtures are set to slave mode.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2020, 01:12:54 pm by Paul G. OBrien »
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Timothy J. Trace

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2020, 01:18:10 pm »

Unless I misunderstand you don't need a hardware splitter with wireless DMX.

Thanks, Paul - I mean to say that it will be pulled from the rig and put on the shelf in my storeroom. :)  I've edited my OP.

I'll put you in the Donner camp. It seems to be a good value.

Thanks ;)
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2020, 03:03:15 pm »

I've had good results from the Donners.  Both with and without antennas. 
I did a test when I first got them and through two stud walls and 70 feet, they were working fine.
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Joel T. Glaser

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2020, 05:14:39 pm »

Timothy,
I've had very good results from the Donner wireless units. Been using them almost weekly for over 3 years.
I bought the battery powered, but have never used them without 110v power. I always seem to have outlets close by.
I bought the 1x7 set, with a single transmitter and 7 receivers. They've been enough for me and figured I'd add more if I ever needed them. So far, so good.
I normally have the transmitter at stage side, so I can't speak to distance of reach, but I've never had a single issue with drop outs or lost signal.
For me, the Donner are a no brainer. An inexpensive product that just works!
« Last Edit: January 01, 2021, 04:19:07 pm by Joel T. Glaser »
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Timothy J. Trace

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2020, 02:05:06 pm »

Thanks, guys - I'm going with the Donner kit with the 7 non-battery powered receivers from Amazon for $165. I figure I'm going to be using the wall warts all of the time anyway.

I love that I can pop into the forums after a looong absence and the community is still so very helpful. I appreciate you guys.
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Brian Jojade

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2020, 06:50:49 pm »

The Donner stuff works great.  I've got even cheaper Wosung knockoffs that I've been using for about 5 years that haven't let me down.  I'm pretty sure they are all the same thing, just with a different brand label on them.

The only thing I kinda hate about them is they are long connectors, and the power connection can be a bit of a hassle.  I have found just the PCB module available for dirt cheap. I've considered picking a few of those up and doing internal wireless modules in a few fixtures to eliminate the added external connections.  Haven't gotten that far yet though.
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Mal Brown

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2021, 05:45:24 pm »

another Donner user here.  So far, so good.
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Rob Spence

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2021, 06:56:39 pm »

Me too
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Steve Garris

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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2021, 11:55:13 am »

I've used the Donner stuff successfully as well.
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Re: Wireless DMX on a budget in 2021 - Blizzard or Donner or ?
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2021, 11:55:13 am »


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