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LOR.. All BS aside.. time to answer the questions

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 I have been a pretty loyal LOR user for the last 3 years.. I had no real issues with using E1.31 for about 8 universes at about 3300 pixels along with my other regular LOR channels.. but now I want to expand with another rather large addition to my pixel props.. 

 

The questions are: 

  1. Are you coming out with software that will handle the large numbers of pixels and do it well?  (we all know the current S3 is struggling at best with large channel counts)
  2. If so, when?  We would need time to get it running and useable for our sequencing this year as well as the actual programming.

If the answer to either of the above it "no" please just tell us so we can move on, if we feel we need to. On to other software instead of playing the guessing game that so many seem to be battling with and getting very frustrated over. 

 

If the answer is silence from LOR, I personally will take that as a "no" and move away from my favorite S3 to something that is made to handle the channels well. 

 

We need to know the answer to those questions and soon...  Please don't let silence dictate your answer.

 

Thanks,

 

Craig

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Agreed. I am planning over 10K channels this year which is double what I had last year. I didn't have any major problems with the exception of pixel lag while doing fast morphs.

 

I will use my favorite, LOR S3 and Superstar this year since I have already begun sequencing. I have set a deadline though and will be one who moves on with other software if nothing is announced by that deadline.

 

I absolutely love Superstar and S3, but I have to face the facts. My show will continue to grow in channel count. If there was sequencing lag with 5K, then 10K will be even more pronounced. 2015 may even double again.

 

We need to know LOR.

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I know last year in the absence of any new improvements, I started using X lights in conjunction with LOR.

This year I know LOR is not going to be enough, so if they are not going to do an improvement I'm going to have to find another software.

If we get no answer by Friday, by Monday I will own some new software. No time to mess around this year.

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I am in the same boat, and expect to do the same thing, if LOR wants to help they will do something real quick.

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Come on folks, lets stay positive and give LOR a couple days or so to craft a reply.

I too need to know the answer to this question.  This past season found me compromising some of my designs (grouping pixels so as to lower total channel count as it appears to the software) since the current software, file size, etc just can't handle large channel counts (I'm currently at about 5200 channls). 

It's frustrating to have a save take 2-3 minutes, it's embarrassing to get "This program is not responding, do you want to abort it" messages from windows when doing copy & pastes, etc.  And I'm running on a fairly high-end machine.

Furthermore, LOR has shown no desire to add generic props to the visualizer and Superstar.  If I want to add my pixels, I have to draw them in one at a time (up until oops, I hit the maximum limit before I've even entered my mega-tree), or try to use an elaborate fake-out done by other users to make the visualizer and SS think I'm running LOR Cosmic devices. 

In my opinion LOR was built on providing low-cost controllers which let us run the lights of our choosing - back in the day that meant I hit Target after-Christmas and got lights for 50 cents or less, then got LOR controllers to control them all.  These days, LOR is pushing its own lights, which cost many times what I can afford to pay, and has no generic pixel controller solution at all, so I'm forced to go elsewhere for everything. 

I was literally one of LOR's first customers back in 2003 (they opened the storefront for testing without telling anyone and a few of us discovered it and placed an order) and have been a vocal advocate of LOR ever since.  I consider Dan a friend and an innovator.  But the last few years have really left me with a personal struggle as to where I need to go with my display.

The last major update for the sequence editor was E1.31 support and groups, both great, necessary features.  But that was for the 2012 season.  The few releases since that time have been only to support features that I"m not able to use because they don't support my configuration.

We really need to hear from LOR as to where things are headed.  As others have said above, the silence is deafening. 

 

-Tim

Edited by Tim Fischer
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...

The last major update for the sequence editor was E1.31 support ... 

 

-Tim

 

What I don't get is that they added E1.31 support, but haven't really developed anything further to support that path.  If they are only wanting to limit LOR users to 100% LOR displays, then whey did they add E1.31 in the first place?  I honestly wonder if they regret adding E1.31?

 

The hobby is changing (maybe faster than they/many anticipated) so LOR has to decide if they are going to follow the tide or stick with their niche of what has become "entry level" animated lighting.  I feel that this is a hobby where most try to eventually mimic the latest and greatest displays (or props) to some degree, so I worry that if LOR decides to stick with their present niche that they will find most customers may start with LOR and then move on to something bigger and better.   In a nutshell, is LOR willing to become the next Mr. Christmas box (that many started with but fairly quickly moved on to something greater/more capable)?

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I've been a long-time LOR user and although I like the possibilities of pixels, from all that I read is that they are somewhat delicate and prone to failure much more than light strings.  I think you have to admit you have to be somewhat technically savvy to do the pixel route with controllers.  They also cost a fortune if you want anything of WOW status, even going to other suppliers other than LOR.  The thing I noticed is that there are always the same few names of you that have the big channel counts - so how big of a customer base is that?  LOR has to decide if it wants to sell to the Mercedes market (limited) or the more plentiful Chevy market.  I know with my small display of 275 channels it takes tens of hours to sequence a song.  Not everyone has that kind of time (I really don't anymore).  It's really how creative you get with your channels that makes the display.  I've seen some pixel boards with talking faces, and to me they are not as impressive as a 4 or 5 channel talking face.  It takes a lot of pixels to make a HD TV picture - a few thousand pixels is less than a 160 X 120 display.  Software development is a very expensive business cost.  You have to look at LOR's potential market for something to handle what you mega users are looking for - to me it seems very limited. 

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The thing I noticed is that there are always the same few names of you that have the big channel counts - so how big of a customer base is that?  LOR has to decide if it wants to sell to the Mercedes market (limited) or the more plentiful Chevy market.  I know with my small display of 275 channels it takes tens of hours to sequence a song.  Not everyone has that kind of time (I really don't anymore).  It's really how creative you get with your channels that makes the display.  I've seen some pixel boards with talking faces, and to me they are not as impressive as a 4 or 5 channel talking face.  It takes a lot of pixels to make a HD TV picture - a few thousand pixels is less than a 160 X 120 display.  Software development is a very expensive business cost.  You have to look at LOR's potential market for something to handle what you mega users are looking for - to me it seems very limited. 

Well I'm a Sr. Software Engineer so I certainly understand the costs involved.

As to the "limited lists of names", you're looking at early adopters.  If you follow any other forums/FB groups, you will see many people rushing to embrace these newer technologies.  Like it or not, it's the direction many in this hobby are going, and you're going to be seeing it trickle down more and more to the consumer level too.  

That said, if LOR chooses not to modify its software for large channel counts - fine.  I'd be disappointed, but it's a business decision and as you said, probably not a terrible one either.  But those of us "Mercedes" users as you call it need to know it so we can plan for the future.

It's a little scary watching other, often free software packages start from scratch and become very usable within the time that LOR has last put out a major update to its sequence editor.

 

-Tim 

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I've been a long-time LOR user and although I like the possibilities of pixels, from all that I read is that they are somewhat delicate and prone to failure much more than light strings.  I think you have to admit you have to be somewhat technically savvy to do the pixel route with controllers.  They also cost a fortune if you want anything of WOW status, even going to other suppliers other than LOR.  The thing I noticed is that there are always the same few names of you that have the big channel counts - so how big of a customer base is that?  LOR has to decide if it wants to sell to the Mercedes market (limited) or the more plentiful Chevy market.  I know with my small display of 275 channels it takes tens of hours to sequence a song.  Not everyone has that kind of time (I really don't anymore).  It's really how creative you get with your channels that makes the display.  I've seen some pixel boards with talking faces, and to me they are not as impressive as a 4 or 5 channel talking face.  It takes a lot of pixels to make a HD TV picture - a few thousand pixels is less than a 160 X 120 display.  Software development is a very expensive business cost.  You have to look at LOR's potential market for something to handle what you mega users are looking for - to me it seems very limited. 

Very well put Sir! And while I'm not a Chevy guy, I do love my Dodge so I'll be here for some time to come. :)

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Software development is a very expensive business cost. You have to look at LOR's potential market for something to handle what you mega users are looking for - to me it seems very limited.

I can't say I'm a "long-time" customer. About 3 years now, with about 300 LOR channels. This past year, I added about 4,100 pixels to my display as well. About 2,700 more coming this year. I like the LOR SE module very much for what it was originally designed for. The number of people who are like me and started their animated lighting adventure with LOR is significant. This will likely stay that way, given the plug and play nature of their product. The number of us who step into pixels is growing significantly as well. And the rate is increasing as more people see our displays and say "hey I want to do that too". Why else would the LED light vendors be adding pixels to their presales, as so many have done this year? So, the market may be limited today, but it's not staying that way.

I would love to continue using their software product for my show. I know it. It works well for my 300 AC channels. However, when it takes 2-3 minutes every time I open or save a sequence file, it becomes frustrating, at best. And when it crashes under the load of a modest amount of channels, infuriating, at worst.

My guess is that those of us who are doing a bunch of pixels are the same folks who have rather large AC channel counts as well. While LOR doesn't want to lose any of their customers, I have to believe that especially includes those of us with a few hundred AC channels. So, to continue to retain those of us who really don't want to learn new software (I'm lazy that way), and thus, continue to sell their hardware, they need to handle the higher channel counts more efficiently. And, more importantly, to tell us if and when they will do so. My employer shows our customers our technology roadmap all the time. If we don't, they leave. All we're asking is that LOR do the same so we know how to make decisions. Otherwise, we're forced to draw our own conclusions. If they don't see a large enough market in the higher channel count displays, then they need to tell us. If you're right about the size of the market, that may, indeed, be their best business decision. But then we can all understand that we need to look for someone willing to provide a solution that fills the niche we're in. However, I contend that those who are likely to eventually move into pixels are the people who are also the most likely to have shows with high AC channel counts. That's a lot of controller sales they may lose out on if they don't address the current limitations.

Edit: looks like Tim and I are on the same page. :)

Edited by Aaron Maue

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...

The thing I noticed is that there are always the same few names of you that have the big channel counts - so how big of a customer base is that?

...

 

You must not visit other forums very much.  Pixels dominate the discussion on many of them.  And to be honest, not many of those users that previously or still currently use LOR visit here any longer.  So that is why you only see a few of the same names. There has unfortunately been a steady exodus from LOR for this very reason.  I worry that that will increase steadily. 

 

 

...

I know with my small display of 275 channels it takes tens of hours to sequence a song.  Not everyone has that kind of time (I really don't anymore). 

 

You are exactly right.  And currently LOR's tools for sequencing anything pixel-related are lacking (and over-priced to top it off, compared to other offerings elsewhere), which makes it all the more of an overwhelming task to complete with their currently available options. 

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I know from my standpoint I wanted to get into pixels last year and wanted to stay  with LOR and I sill would like to stay with LOR Products so I waited and waited  last summer at Christmas Expo some new things were show and said then nothing........I know I asked numerous times how things were coming and NO response so I waited and waited....... I will do pixels this year with or without LOR Products if don't know something soon.  I need time for planning and sequencing etc.

 

I think all of us here could live with LOR's decision whatever they decide.    I know I just hate waiting and wondering if anything will materialize

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I agree that it's the not knowing that makes things tough. I'm sequencing over 600 regular channels and looking at upwards of 2000 pixels this year and I'm most definitely not interested in waiting minutes for sequences to load and/or save. It's totally unworkable.

I also agree that the movement to more and more pixels isn't a fad - it's most likely the future. The pixel world isn't going to be so heavily DIY for much longer and the plug-n-play products will be coming out the woodwork. If LOR has any intention in staking out part of that future and being anything more than an entry-level product, they need to act now before people turn away in even bigger numbers than what's already occurred.

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Would be nice to know a few different things.
1. Software mentioned as above
2. 8 Channel Controllers Return it's no longer 2012 it's 2014
3. The RF-V5 transmitters
4. Firmware update for the Gen  2 controllers that give them the dimming curves
5. A display card for the ctb16pc controllers           you can find this on pg 11 http://www1.lightorama.com/Documents/CTB16PCg3_UserMan_Web.pdf

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I asked a question of LOR about software plans.  Whether they will or won't be adding a better pixel handling control part to their software.  If they have no plans to move in that direction, it is their choice.  I never said that made them bad.  LOR is a great company and I like some of their hardware.. I also like the current version of the software, but it doesn't appear that is will work well in the future as larger numbers of pixels become more and more prevalent in the coming years.   I used it fine this year with 3300 E1.31 channels and about 300 LOR channels.  I plan to add a lot this year and I don't want the headaches that others have been plagued with.. Simple as that.

 

If LOR is going to upgrade to a usable software, I will hang with it.  If they have no plans to I don't see how I can... Very simple concept.. I just want them to LET US KNOW.  

 

So, if by Friday they have not viewed it as important enough to at least answer a couple of questions, I will start pursuing other software packages.  This is just me..  I am fine either way... I do think some respect is owed it's customers in the way of an answer... even if it is "go pound sand".... But again.. that is their choice... Let us see what Friday holds. 

 

As I stated, for me.... silence is an answer of "NO".  Can't see how it could be taken any other way.

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Would be nice to know a few different things.

1. Software mentioned as above

2. 8 Channel Controllers Return it's no longer 2012 it's 2014

3. The RF-V5 transmitters

4. Firmware update for the Gen  2 controllers that give them the dimming curves

5. A display card for the ctb16pc controllers           you can find this on pg 11 http://www1.lightorama.com/Documents/CTB16PCg3_UserMan_Web.pdf

Titus:

I can already answer #4 for you.  It won't happen. The CPU hasn't got the horsepower to do dimming curves.  That came from LOR tech support. 

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<snip>

I would love to continue using their software product for my show. I know it. It works well for my 300 AC channels. However, when it takes 2-3 minutes every time I open or save a sequence file, it becomes frustrating, at best. 

Beta version to address this discussed here.

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Beta version to address this discussed here.

Fair enough. I haven't tried it yet, but was planning to as part of an upcoming "system loading" experiment I have planned. Losing some of the safeguards is disappointing and feels more like a work-around than a fix. I plan to give an honest report-out when I do.

In the end, I believe that LOR should take whatever course they believe is best for the company. Every company has to make consumption choices and they make those decisions based upon what is believed to be best for them, even if others see things differently. All I'm looking for is a roadmap that shows me what their plans are, if any, in this particular area. Turning off useful features isn't what I'd prefer, but if that's their long-term plan for dealing with the challenges, I'd like to know that so I can decide if that solution is good enough for what I'm trying to do or if I need to consider a longer-term alternative.

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