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WeissWelsh

Multiple Pixcon16 boards setup

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WeissWelsh    3

Hello,

I will be using E1.31 and am not very knowledgeable about the subject. 
I will also have a computer, router and switch in my garage. I wish to have 5 Pixcon16 controllers at a specific location in my yard. Here's my question: Do I need to have 5 different CAT5 cables coming from the switch in my garage (one for each controller?) Or....... is there a way to have just 1 CAT5 cable come from the switch to just 1 controller AND then have that controller connect to the other 4?

The reason I ask is because the PIXCON16 controller has five  RJ45 jacks that can be used as "DMX Bridge Ports,"  but I'm not sure what a "DMX Bridge Port" is and if they can be used to connect the other 4 controllers.

I attached a picture of the board from the manual. 

Bob

Image1.jpg

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k6ccc    499

Yes, you need a separate cable from your switch with one cable to each PixCon.  The other option if you will have all five PixCons in the same location is to run one cable from your garage switch to a six (or more) port switch at the location where the PixCons are located.  Then run a short cable from each PixCon to that switch.

The extra connectors you are referring to are used for RS-485 communications, not ethernet (which is what E1.31 runs over).  Longer answer on that if desired.

 

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BMurray    55

LOR protocol is different from E1.31. With that being said the ideal scenario would be to run them ALL in LOR mode. The two RJ45 jacks to the left are used for "LOR" or  "DMX" mode. What that means is that you can daisy chain each one off of each other. But the jumpers above them need to be set to LOR. Doing it this way would require only ONE cable to be run from your computer through the USB-RS-845-HS ( high speed LOR adapter. The RED one ) Then you would only need 4 other smaller cables to be run. So you have the initial Cat5e from your computer (connected to the USB-RS-485-HS) then to the 1st Pixcon16 "IN" RJ45 then a second Cat5e from the "OUT" RJ45 jack with this one going to the "IN" RJ45 jack on the next Pixcon16 ...etc. Another option is if you have any of the LOR gen3 AC controllers you can daisy chain the Pixcons off of them in the same manner. Instead of the initial Cat5e cable coming of your computer it would come out of the nearest AC controller you have next to the area where you want to set up the Pixcons then daisy chain them as above. 

If you decide to go with running them in E1.31 then thay ALL have to be set up this way. The initial Cat5e going to a network switch then 5 separate cables to esch of the Pixcons  Ethernet port which is the larger "SILVER" one. Also like K6ccc said with one cable from your computer with the network switch in the yard next to your controllers. Still with 5 cables but probably much shorter. Just make sure you put the switch in a water proof container/box. 

The extra RJ485 jacks can also be used for DMX. Usually with dumb controllers, moving heads, etc... but not to "daisy chain" controllers. 

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Mr. P    301

There are only two E1.31 controllers on the market that I know of that can be daisy chained and the Pixcon is not one of them. However, the Pixcon has its advantage as it can be used on both networks.

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BMurray    55

He states he has (5)  "Pixcon16" controllers. I know  most E1.31 controllers can't be "daisy chained". I have several.  LOR controllers though can be "daisy chained" together. The ADVANTAGE  of having LOR is to be able to connect each of the controllers, be it AC or pixels to each other without the need for a network switch. Just the USB-485-HS adapter. I was making the suggestion since he has LOR controllers to set them up under LOR mode to avoid a network switch and multiple cables.

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WeissWelsh    3

Thanks Jim (K6ccc). That's exactly what I needed to know. Also, thanks for the great idea of using a small switch at the location of the 5 Pixcon16 controllers. That will accomplish my goal of having just one long run of CAT5, which was my main concern. Thanks again!!

 

Bob

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WeissWelsh    3

Thanks BMurray. I was actually considering using the LOR High Speed adapter, which would have been ideal for daisy chaining the controllers. However, I saw in one of the official LOR tutorials (http://www1.lightorama.com/PDF/IntroductionToDMXandE131.pdf) something that made me think twice. It stated that "an LOR network at 1000K speed is enough to run 2000-2500 pixels in your display." My 5 Pixcons will be running 4,000 pixels at a minimum. I was worried that it might have issues. I was kind of bummed to read that because everything else in my display is using the regular LOR network and I wouldn't have to learn anything new. LOL. 

 

Bob

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WeissWelsh    3

Thank you so much Jim (k6ccc) and BMurray. Thanks to both of you I was able to setup the Pixcon16, install a switch, configure all the static IP addresses, and get some test pixels to work through the sequencer. It was a steep learning curve for me. I couldn't have done it without you two!! Thanks for taking the time out of your day, even though you didn't receive any personal benefit from doing so. Pure selflessness. 

Bob

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BMurray    55

Always a pleasure to help each other. Especially in this forum. You'll one day be a Pro at this stuff and be able to help others. This is how we learn being able to bounce problems off each other and even when we have no issues and just want to expand the knowledge base.

Congrats on getting your controllers set up!! Now,  you know you'll have to post pics and video of your display when the season arrives:P

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WeissWelsh    3
4 hours ago, Little_b said:

Not sure how you have the pixcon's enclosed, but in one of mine I did add an 8 port switch in the same enclosure to avoid running multiple cables out of the garage.  (About the 2 min mark)  The power supplies are in a separate enclosure.

How funny... I literally just finished watching that exact video BEFORE reading your message. What a coincidence. Yep, I'm going to be adding a switch to one of my boxes. I also noticed in that video that the person added a 12-volt fan to the enclosure. I have two questions about that. #1 -- Should the air blow "into" the enclosure or "out" of the enclosure? #2 -- He mounted it on the side of the enclosure, so won't water come in through that hole?

 

Bob 

Edited by WeissWelsh

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Little_b    35

#1 The question of in or out has been up for debate in the forums. I have it set to blow out, with holes on the bottom where the wires come out to let air in.

#2 I had to go back and watch it again as it's been a while since I made it.  It's on the side like that because that particular box sits on the roof so the box doesn't quite sit vertical.  The vent cover I used has a gasket so it seals around the hole. https://www.alliedelec.com/bud-industries-ipv-1115/70368863/   I haven't had any water issues and it's been through 2 winters so far.  And last winter seemed more rainy than normal.

And just to clarify, the vent is only on the bigger box with 4 power supplies.  I don't have a vent on the CG1500 with the controllers, and so far haven't had any heat issues that I'm aware of.

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WeissWelsh    3
2 hours ago, Little_b said:

The vent cover I used has a gasket so it seals around the hole. https://www.alliedelec.com/bud-industries-ipv-1115/70368863/   I haven't had any water issues and it's been through 2 winters so far. 

Thanks for the link to the vent cover. In the video I couldn't see the actual vent. But now that I see it on the link, I can see why you had no problems. I didn't realize it had a cover pointing downwards. I'm buying some of those!!! Thanks again!!

 

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TheDucks    28

2 things I was taught as a new Engineering technician:

1) Don't fight mother nature. Hot air rises., so cold in at the bottom, Hot out near the top

2) Don't blow Hot air in the Customers Face :D  Fan discharge  to the Rear or side

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WeissWelsh    3
On 9/9/2017 at 7:48 AM, TheDucks said:

1) Don't fight mother nature. Hot air rises., so cold in at the bottom, Hot out near the top

2) Don't blow Hot air in the Customers Face :D  Fan discharge  to the Rear or side

Thanks TheDucks. That makes a lot of sense. That way the new cold air will run across the equipment. Thanks!!

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