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Geoff Harvey

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About Geoff Harvey

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    Brisbane, Australia
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  1. See posts 27-30 in the "Tips, tricks & Secrets" post in the Newbies section. http://forums.lightorama.com/index.php?/topic/13818-sequencing-tips-tricks-and-secrets/ Hope this helps Geoff
  2. There are useful tips on the wizards in the "Useful Tips & Tricks" post. see http://forums.lightorama.com/index.php?/topic/13818-sequencing-tips-tricks-and-secrets/
  3. For my megatree baubles, I use a pair of back to back dumb RGB modules inside a 1 litre milk bottle (or fruit jar) to diffuse the light. These are light weight, cheap and can be any colour for the show. They work like a charm.
  4. I cut my bulb strings in 2 places and added 4 pin Ray Wu connectors to allow easy install and tear down, Also added a couple of feet extension at the joins. Tested OK, but have yet to use them in the display.
  5. Hi from a long time Aussie LOR user. Sounds to me that the power packs you have on your lights are DC with filtering to reduce the flicker. These will never respond quickly to switching because of the inherrent delays in the power packs. Test the response by plugging straight into a 240V outlet and switch on/off. Another delaying possibility is that the controller has memory. Switching a controller with memory will also result in delays. Depending on the type of power pack you have, it may be possible to disable the controller by opening it and bridging some of the internal connections. In Australia, most serious lights control enthusiasts have gone the DC route because our lights are low voltage. This means discarding the power packs and controllers that come with the lights and connecting directly to DC controllers (which are cheaper than the AC controllers) and providing a separate DC power supply to run the controller(s). This approach requires a bit of a learning curve, but is a much better and safer approach. Note that there is an Australian Christmas Lighting forum at http://auschristmaslighting.com/forums/index.php . While there is a lot of help available here and a lot of LOR users, the emphasis is more on the RGB and DMX control of lights. Feel free to contact me direct - I am in Brisbane.
  6. I typically use 350Watt power supplies for the DC boards. One power supply will power 3-6000 LEDs and I often have 2 or more boards running from each power supply depending on load requirements, (ie one supply will power 16, 32, ... channels or strings of lights). I tus 12V supplies for most of the dumb RGB strips, but 24, 27, & 30V supplies for most of the strings of lights. The actual voltage requirements for Australian lights vary and need to be tested, but this is easily done. As mentioned above, the LOR controllers do allow different supply voltages to be connected to each half of the board. This can be handy when you only need a few channels of say 12 & 24V lights on a particular controller. WRT the multifunction controllers supplied with light strings in Australia, the older ones did not have memory and turned on at a default setting where the controller cycled through each function. The newer ones with memory react too slowly for effective LOR control. If you go DC - throw them away.
  7. I live in Australia which is also 240V 50Hz supply. You can use the LOR AC controllers at this voltage with at least some of the low voltage lights with transformer packs. Most of the Australian low voltage lights include multi-function controllers which need to be disabled for use with the LOR AC controllers. While this setup works with iron core transformers and allows both switching and dimming, there can be problems with channels sticking because of the low loads. Also, many of the newer lights are now including electronic voltage reduction often with DC outputs. Disabling the controllers (supplied with these lights) requires different approaches and can be dangerous. My strong recommendation is to avoid the AC controllers for those lights with power packs. Use the LOR DC controllers with an appropriate voltage DC power supply. Cut off the power pack and multi-function controller supplied with the lights and direct connect to the DC outputs on the DC LOR boards. While there is a significant learning curve in converting to the DC route, the resulting installation and control is far superior and the whole installation is safe low voltage. Just my 2 cents worth. PS - The DC controllers are also significantly cheaper than the AC controllers, but you do still need a DC power supply.
  8. If I recall correctly, the LOR program works with a time resolution of 1 centi-second, ie 0.01 sec. The program will only attempt to send commands to controllers at this time resolution. To chase across 9 channels in 0.05 sec requires each channel to turn on and then off in about 0,0055 sec, ie faster than the program's maximum time resolution. Even if the program could respond at this rate, the human eye does not respond this rapidly. It can barely resolve 20 frames/sec (.05 sec between frames), hence people would not see the chase, just a dimming. (The response time of the eye is why motion pictures work and these are typically only 25 to 30 frames/sec.)
  9. Geoff Harvey

    dc cards

    I run quite a few DC cards. I use 350W DC power supplies. For most power supplies, I run 2 or 3 cards from each power supply. In my case, the number of DC cards / supply depends not only on the total current draw, but also on the physical locations of the cards and the dc voltage required. (Because of my mix of lights, I run several DC voltages 12, 24, 27, & 30).
  10. A proposal gives one a very special feeling. Like Brian, I had one last year in front of the lights, but I did not find out until the following night when they returned with her parents to see the lights. I really felt honored.
  11. Hi I'm from Brisbane Australia. I've been running LOR for 8-9 years. I started with the 240V AC controllers, but since the DC controllers were released, I have been using these more and more. Reasons are several, Safety - having 240V strings in the display is potentially dangerous as the insulation is never as good as used on certified Australian electrical products. Costs - the DC boards are cheaper/channel even after factoring in the need for separate DC supplies. Usually a 350W DC supply will power at least 2 DC 16 channel boards. Low voltage cabling and connectors (speaker wire or security cable) is much cheaper and less bulky than 240V cable and connectors. The DC boards give a much better low load control on light strings. You can dispense with the bulky plug-packs and controllers that come with the Australian low voltage lights.There is a bit more of a learning curve in going the DC route than the AC route, but it is well and truly worth this effort. There is also good support on the Australian Christmas Lighting forum even though this forum is heavily biased to RGB and pixel setups (which is good if you eventually decide to follow that route.) I personally have decided to use only a small amount of RGB lighting. http://auschristmaslighting.com/forums/index.php Hope some of this helps.
  12. You do not need the 2nd computer. Just create a background animation sequence which you activate in the background section of show builder. The background animation sequence must only include the channels required for the background elements and these channels must not be included in the various musical sequences used in the show. I only use one show each night and this repeats, so the background channels remain on all night and turn off at the end of the show. If you use multiple shows, then the background sequence would be included in each show. The background channels may then switch off & on as the shows change. (I have never tested this.)
  13. My tree is similar to yours in construction, 60 drops pulled up by 6 ropes through eyebolts mounted at the top of the tree. (10 drops pulled up by each rope). I experienced exactly what you did , but found a simple solution; I lay the light segments out on the ground and attach each of the lower ends to screw eyes in a light timber board (simple wire ties). This board stops the bottom ends from twisting and the spacing roughly matches the lower ring. When pulled up, I then zip tie the strings to the lower ring, then remove the board. To stop the mess occurring when dismantling, I again attach the board to each light segment before cutting the zip ties, then just lower the segment. While this may not be the fastest technique, I have found it works a treat.
  14. When CCRs were first released, I queried extending them. I joined 2 end to end and run the pair from a single controller. I have run in this mode ever since. Note that when you join in this manner, they have to be set up in the hardware utility. The pair of CCRs still run as 50 pixels total, a limit set by the controller, but each pixel is comprised of 6 RGB bulbs instead of the 3 when the strip is used normally. Details of my setup and original discussions are given in http://forums.lightorama.com/index.php?/topic/10274-joining-ccrs-end-to-end/ forum posts.
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