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Tekbob

Is it to late to start for a newbie

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So just getting back from Disney and seeing the Osborne lights gets the creative juices going but is it to late to get a starter system and have it operational by Dec 1st or should I wait for the sales that I have read about and start for next year?

Seems like there are enough free and paid sequences already available that i could at least get a couple of those up and running but im not sure.

If this is mildy doable is the starter 16channel kit available from here the one I should get or is there a better package available elsewhere, i saw wowlights had something as well. Also as i want to be able to not use a computer for now, what is everyones thoughts on the mini director? Do i really need the industrial enclosure unit that is $100 more or can I go with the other unit?

Finally I would like to be able to use this for other things in the future, has anyone used these to sequence music to lights for weddings or other events? Are there any design ideas that anyone has seen for this type of thing? Seems like this could be used for so many other creative ideas that it would ease the cost of only using it for xmas or Halloween.

Thanks for any help and replies, this seems way to addicting already.

-Bob

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Perfect time to start planning for next year. Start deciding what bulb type and what color white you want to use and try to stick with it. This helps make a uniform display. The big box store lights are nice at first and cheap after Christmas, but longevity is very questionable. In a couple years you may be replacing what you buy today while also trying to expand your display. The favorite online vendors on this forum will soon be starting their presale orders, you'll pay more up front, but longevity is much better. I'm starting to really kick myself, my display is full of a mix of lights and a little fustrated on what to do going forward. Read, read and read some more on this forum, download user manuals and use the search.

Welcome to the madness!

PS Many use their controllers year round. I have RGBW flowerbeds and RGBW high power led floods for landscaping 24/7/365. Fourth of July and Halloween are the two biggest other holidays to light up as well. Each holiday has it's unique challenges.

Edited by scubado
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Getting the hardware this late in the game for this year will be the biggest hurdle. If you want to do animated lighting now is a good time to build the props you would use next season and just run lights on them for now. Then half the battle is over for next year.

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I was thinking the same as GoofyGuy - set up etc would probably be possible if you were using all free/paid sequences and know what youer' about with lights etc it might be possible to get something up and out there but getting the controller ordered and to you on time would be tough - impossible (I'd imagine) for the 1st December certainly :/

Having reread and seen that you want to use a Standalone Director rather than the computer aspect etc, I'd have to agree with the others and suggest that you start planning etc now but for next year.

And definitely read read read - everyone on here is so helpful and there is far too information out there to take in! I only started this year, am dead nervous about getting the display up and running but ... fingers crossed! :)

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I think it is. If you keep a simple design and use purchased sequences out of the box, I think you could. Plus it will help you learn it for prep 2013!

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I ordered controllers 8 days ago, with holiday and all, I still have 5 days before I get them. Just don't this Dec 1 is possible.

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I agree with the rest. I'd wait until next year. This is my first year and we've been working on our show since June. (It starts tomorrow!!!) building props, getting lights, sequencing, reading, reading reading and more reading.... still have tweaking to do... I think if you try and do it so late, even if you do get your products, if it isn't what you wanted you may get disappointed....

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I agree with the rest. I'd wait until next year. This is my first year and we've been working on our show since June. (It starts tomorrow!!!) building props, getting lights, sequencing, reading, reading reading and more reading.... still have tweaking to do... I think if you try and do it so late, even if you do get your products, if it isn't what you wanted you may get disappointed....

Look at the bright side - that's where the low-cost used controllers come from next spring and summer...

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As long as you get your residential controller by Dec 15, it's all good. Throw some lights on the house, get some free sequences, and make it happen. And the good thing is that next year will be better.

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Look at the bright side - that's where the low-cost used controllers come from next spring and summer...

lol true.

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I think I will take the advice of the majority here and wait until the sale and plan ahead. Worst thing i can do is rush it and have it not turn out or be very subpar.

Has anyone used these devices for anything other than xmas such as for weddings or other events.

Thanks to everyone,

-Bob

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I think I will take the advice of the majority here and wait until the sale and plan ahead. Worst thing i can do is rush it and have it not turn out or be very subpar.

Has anyone used these devices for anything other than xmas such as for weddings or other events.

Thanks to everyone,

-Bob

I did a vending trailer for a business once. Basically, do whatever turns you on and have fun. People have done parade floats, boats, vehicles. I'm planning on building a 300 gallon saltwater tank this next year. It will incorporate RGB lighting :D

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In my opinion, it depends on how large you want your display to be, and how much time you have to devote to it. I just started working on mine this month. Got all the hardware and software at the beginning of the month, and i've been busy every since. I immediately started working on musical sequences, and now I have about 30, and I just started to hang lights yesterday. In between that time, I bought all the minor accessories I needed as well. I plan to go live this Saturday (Dec. 1st).

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Of course LOR will have their annual sale next spring/summer too. Make sure you get on the mailing list to be included.

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I just ordered a controller and software yesterday....don't plan on getting some super fancy setup up and running but will definitely do some testing / planning on what I want to do next year. I'll probably be messing with it all year. I can see how this could become very addicting.

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I just ordered a controller and software yesterday....don't plan on getting some super fancy setup up and running but will definitely do some testing / planning on what I want to do next year. I'll probably be messing with it all year. I can see how this could become very addicting.

The best thing I could suggest is group your display in 4's, then try to edit one persons sequences. Make sure you record video. So that next year when you're sequencing you'll have a visual to improve on.

If you need any sequences or help shoot me an e-mail. Good luck.

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I agre with Columubs, if you group your display in 4's (or 2's if you have enough time) you could put at least something up. Obviously it won't look like the displays the experienced people have, but the lights will still go blinkity blink. This is my first year and I started planning in July. My display is very basic and I'm using mostly borrowed sequences but it's still fun. Since I'm using borrowed sequences, they weren't programmed specifically for my layout, so it doesn't look quite as "coordinated" as the one song I was able to do on my own. However, it still gives me countless ideas for next year, and everyone here is very helpful and willing to share.

Pick whatever colors and styles you like for your lights. Personally, I'm one who will snatch up all the 50% off lights at Wal-Mart et al after Christmas. Don't care what colors they are, I'll grab them all. Then I find uses for them in my display. Some people like all white (of which there can be countless shades), others have specific patterns. While I do color coordinate specific parts, I like having a huge variety of colors.

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Thanks for the input, my controller came today. I plan on playing around a bit after the kiddos go to bed. Pardon my newbness but what are you referring to as in group your display in 4's or 2's? Is this 4 groups of lights on one channel?

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Like on my house ch 1-4 are House, windows, garage low, and garage high in green, Then ch 5-8 are the same in red. Most music is in 4/4 and your controller can be divided in multiples of four. It is just easy to organize.

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Gotcha. Lots of learning for this fella. Thank goodness for you guys and this forum.

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Lots of great comments here, I'll add a few more. This is my 4th year doing a display with LOR, ten 16 ch controllers and one 8 ch controller. I wouldn't "stress" myself out trying to get something going this year. Download the S3 demo software and pick a song you would like for next years display. Watch the LOR Videos about sequencing, build an animation of your house - and sequence the song. I did this in Dec. 2008 - and had my first display up in 2009. The first thing I learned is that 16 channels were not enough, nor was 32 - ended up doing 48 channels my first year. The next thing I learned is you have to think about your power budget. What kind of lights are you going to use and do you have enough available plugs/amps to support the display. My original 3 controllers and 10,000 mini-lights were popping the breaker - so I had to run extension cords to split up the the controllers to lighten the load on the plug/circuit. That's when I made another decision, I was going to transition to LEDs - 100 mini-lights draw about 100 watts, 100 LEDs draw about 4 watts. Today I have about 25,000 LEDs and about 5,000 mini-lights. The mini-lights are on wireframes that I need to redo with LEDs. You will need extension cords, tons of them. Don't buy them - build them, you can buy Vampire plugs & recepticals from most of the Christmas supply sites (Creative Displays is my vendor of choice) and SPT-1 (Lamp cord/wire) at your local Lowes or Home Depot.

This is a great forum, everyone is here to help!

SJmiller

www.shastalights.com

Last but not least - Have Fun! People are going to enjoy your display, they are going to be greatful for the time and effort you put in.

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Mighty I agree mostly with sjmiller expect on the point to hold off to next year. If you got kids like I do they don't care if the light aren't jump'n off like they are suppose to. They just like the blinky blink. I am an advocate of, you purchased the controller to make your house the jump off of the neighborhood so put up them light..... Bootleg or not.... it's all good. Whatever you do it's better than that person that did nothing.

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Their will definitely be something going up this year. I don't have near enough lights to warrant the second controller....this year. I plan to stock up, build an inventory for next year. I'll be going all LED, for sure. I can absolutely see how 16 channels would be limiting. I set it up in the house last night to 'tinker' with and the ideas started flowing after I saw how the software and controller worked together. I took everything back apart last night since their were extension cords going all through the kitchen so my 4 yr old didn't see it live but I took some video for him. He loved it.....which pretty much made the decision for me on putting something outside this year.

Just testing out the new equipment.

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Gotcha. Lots of learning for this fella. Thank goodness for you guys and this forum.

This forum is a god send!!! There is literally sooooo much to learn your first time around that you would be lost without the countless experts on here!!

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NEVER TOO LATE!!

My brother and I went to a class in Orlando a saturday or two before thanksgiving; received our order the wednesday before thanksgiving and got our 10 CCRs; 2CCPs and normal 16 channel controller running in 3 days. Took another 2 days to hide wires in the attic and all is well.

Start now!

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