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Matrix VS: Pixel Tree?

Matrix VS Pixel Tree!  

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  1. 1. Which feature should we install for our 2018 light show?

    • 8 Pixel Matrix
    • The 360 degree pixel tree!


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So question for you all... I am looking at what to add to the show next year, and I'm torn between a few options... and was was wanting some feedback from those of you who may have these items in your show... Which ones have the best "wow" factor... Or which ones seem to be the biggest crowd pleasers!!

So for referance here is a look at our current set up:

5a42c17423a38_2107HouseMedium.png.a01cd301749a79bd4041f96b19319683.png

My options are:

1.) We have 4 windows on the front of the house... I can add a pixel matrix to the shutters on each side of the windows, for a total of 8 matrix. Each one would be about 18 inches wide by 60 inches tall. Given that they aren't massive in size would they really be able to do that many things?? I was looking at having small "images" floating down IE: If a song said "Heart" I could have images of hearts falling on the matrix. Or if it said "snow" falling snow on the matrix... (I'm sure you get the point)

-OR-

2.) I can replace the blue spiral mega tree to the left of the house (in the picture) with a 360 degree pixel tree. I know there are some GREAT things the pixel trees can do like in this video:

 

My question is... On that tree how many of those features are actually possible to program just using LOR, and not having to switch to SuperStar or xLights? 

-----------------------------

Another thought is... People LOVE our spiral mega tree... They rave about it being their favorite thing in the show... So I'm a bit nervous to remove it from the show... But at the same time, I'm thinking the pixel tree would have so much more of a "WOW" factor to it... And I could (I hope) still have the same spiraling effect I have on the tree now...

So yeah... Let the debate begin:

Matrix or Pixel Tree??

Any advice you all could provide me with is very greatly appreciated.. Thank you! :)

Edited by DisneyMatt10

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Hey Matt with that huge yard you could go either way. I just built a pixel spiral tree and it's pretty awesome. You can do all sorts of effects with it.

Even go old school and do the normal red, green, blue, white like a normal spiral. My visitors love it.

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24 minutes ago, DisneyMatt10 said:

My question is... On that tree how many of those features are actually possible to program just using LOR, and not having to switch to SuperStar or xLights? 

Honest answer is that if you are going to get into large matrix type things, you really should plan on using SuperStar or Pixel Editor.  Although yes, you CAN sequence a large matrix in Sequence Editor, it would take hours to create some effects in SE that would take just a few minutes in either SS or PE.  My personal preference is SuperStar, but that's my opinion.

If it were me, and money was not an object, I would convert the mega-tree to a pixel mega-tree.  Putting small matrixes on the eight shutters using traditional pixels would be pretty low resolution for graphics.  If you were to do that with P10 panels, they would be 48 pixels wide which would give you far better resolution.  Just food for thought.

Note that for reference, the San Antonio tree you showed is a lot of pixels.  Best I could count from the photo, that is about 40 to 50 strings of between 75 and 100 pixels per string.  Allow quite a bit of error factor in those counts, as there was a lot of guess work in there.

 

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Hey Matt with that huge yard you could go either way. I just built a pixel spiral tree and it's pretty awesome. You can do all sorts of effects with it.

Even go old school and do the normal red, green, blue, white like a normal spiral. My visitors love it.

I wish I had a huge yard!! lol, I think the drone shot just makes it look that way! I'm starting to really lean more towards the tree over the Matrix.. 

20 minutes ago, k6ccc said:

Honest answer is that if you are going to get into large matrix type things, you really should plan on using SuperStar or Pixel Editor.  Although yes, you CAN sequence a large matrix in Sequence Editor, it would take hours to create some effects in SE that would take just a few minutes in either SS or PE.  My personal preference is SuperStar, but that's my opinion.

I don't mind using the Pixel Editor! I have been playing around with it, and the Pixel Tree and I am starting to like the way the effects are looking! I have considered SuperStar... But I can't stand the idea of having to learn more software... :mellow:

20 minutes ago, k6ccc said:

If it were me, and money was not an object, I would convert the mega-tree to a pixel mega-tree.  Putting small matrixes on the eight shutters using traditional pixels would be pretty low resolution for graphics.  If you were to do that with P10 panels, they would be 48 pixels wide which would give you far better resolution.  Just food for thought.

 I was thinking of doing the tree this year, and maybe the Matrixes next year... I know nothing about p10 panels... So that's something for me to start researching!! Maybe it's an option for next year!

20 minutes ago, k6ccc said:

Note that for reference, the San Antonio tree you showed is a lot of pixels.  Best I could count from the photo, that is about 40 to 50 strings of between 75 and 100 pixels per string.  Allow quite a bit of error factor in those counts, as there was a lot of guess work in there.

I knew that tree was a LOT of pixels... Wasn't sure how many though. We were only looking at doing 32 strands at 100 nodes per strand... Does that sound like it would be enough, or should I add more strands to it?? :blink:

Edited by DisneyMatt10

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2 hours ago, DisneyMatt10 said:

I knew that tree was a LOT of pixels... Wasn't sure how many though. We were only looking at doing 32 strands at 100 nodes per strand... Does that sound like it would be enough, or should I add more strands to it?? :blink:

32 might be a little thin at the bottom for a 360 tree.  My tree is 48 strands of 110 pixels with 2" spacing with diameter of approximately 9 feet and lighted height of 18 ft. 

 

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I ran two P10 panels this year, there is an entire thread dedicated to that elsewhere.  for those effects you would want to look at S5 or xLights.  Most of what was on the San Antonio tree are default xLights effects with some clever layering.  Also ran a pixel tree because we also like the look of it and ran a LOR MegaTree.

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I think all forms of matrix and be sequenced without the add on tools.    The spiral tree looks awesome.  If its all working I would add another pixel prop instead of replacing. 

 

Isn't a 360 tree a shape of a matrix?     They will be defined and sequenced the same way with pictures words and patterns.      

The matrix shapes can be flat board,  flared 2d tree,  Cone tree,  180 tree  etc.     

 

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13 hours ago, uncledan said:

32 might be a little thin at the bottom for a 360 tree.  My tree is 48 strands of 110 pixels with 2" spacing with diameter of approximately 9 feet and lighted height of 18 ft. 

 

May I ask what type of pixel are you using on the roof of the garage? Thanks

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Thanks everyone for the feedback so far. I'm really starting to lean towards the Pixel Tree. Using S5 seems to make programming it rather easy!! I did come across a video on YouTube that left me wondering... How the heck did they do that!! So maybe you all can provide me with a bit of advice. As seen in the video below: (at the 1:34 mark)

How in the world did they get the tree to be a giant singing face?!?! That's AMAZING and everyone I have shown this video to goes "OMG!! NO WAY!! THAT'S SO COOL!!"

So how in the world do I get singing faces transferred onto my Pixel Tree?! HELP!!!

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I haven't tried on mine but its pretty easy to do that with Xlights. 

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1 hour ago, uncledan said:

I haven't tried on mine but its pretty easy to do that with Xlights. 

*sighs* I really don't want to have to learn xLights... I wanted to keep it with LOR... 

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Should be able to do that in eithe Puxel Editor or SuperStar.

 

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49 minutes ago, DisneyMatt10 said:

*sighs* I really don't want to have to learn xLights... I wanted to keep it with LOR... 

xLights isn't that hard to pick up.  I am the king of anxious and paranoia but was able to get thru it.  In LOR when you are working with Pixels you are working down to the individual pixel level (it's my understanding that S5 and Pixel Editor may have changed that), in xLights you are working at the model/prop level (use color sweep effect over my mini tree group for x seconds).  Once you figure that part out it's easy peasy.  I didn't want to give up my LOR stuff and don't have to, just use a patch cable to send DMX commands to my LOR controllers and all is good.

I think if I can figure it out (with some help from my friends) then anyone can.  S5 looks a lot like xLights so you may be heading in that direction anyway.

Edited by caniac

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Thank you all for the feedback so far. We are really looking at doing the Pixel Tree... *sighs* But I have a few questions...

1.) If we keep the sizing the way it is now our pixels would be about 9-1/2 inches apart around the bottom... Is that too far apart??

2.) Do you think a 360 degree tree would be better than a 180 degree tree?? --- Our show is set up for people to only view the show from the front of the property. That being said, how bad would a flat 180 degree tree look over there on the side of the yard where the current 360 degree spiral tree is at??

I just feel like by doing a 360 degree tree I'm spending a lot of time and money on 180 degrees worth of tree most people will never see. . . Thoughts??

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46 minutes ago, DisneyMatt10 said:

Thank you all for the feedback so far. We are really looking at doing the Pixel Tree... *sighs* But I have a few questions...

1.) If we keep the sizing the way it is now our pixels would be about 9-1/2 inches apart around the bottom... Is that too far apart??

2.) Do you think a 360 degree tree would be better than a 180 degree tree?? --- Our show is set up for people to only view the show from the front of the property. That being said, how bad would a flat 180 degree tree look over there on the side of the yard where the current 360 degree spiral tree is at??

I just feel like by doing a 360 degree tree I'm spending a lot of time and money on 180 degrees worth of tree most people will never see. . . Thoughts??

I would say 180, no need lighting what most folks won't see.  Below is my pixel tree with 4" spacing at the bottom and 16 strands.

 

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4 hours ago, caniac said:

I would say 180, no need lighting what most folks won't see.  Below is my pixel tree with 4" spacing at the bottom and 16 strands.

Looks really good!! I'll have to keep in mind the spacing. Your tree looks awesome!!

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1 hour ago, DisneyMatt10 said:

Looks really good!! I'll have to keep in mind the spacing. Your tree looks awesome!!

thanks

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I would do a 36 strand 360 degree tree with 85 pixels per strand.

You'd be able to be around 18 feet with 2 inch spacing and two strands would be one DMX universe which could be easily covered with a falcon controller with an expansion board. 

At that pixel density in that size I think you would look awesome and you would probably have to run it at 50% brightness so it doesn't outshine the rest of your display.

You would probably want to use the Bocoyo strips, and nodes for this project. 

Also don't lose the spiral tree just downsize it, it still has plenty of wow factor it just doesn't have to be so big. 

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1 hour ago, Ebuechner said:

Also don't lose the spiral tree just downsize it, it still has plenty of wow factor it just doesn't have to be so big. 

Help me with this suggestion.  Do you mean buy all new shorter light strands?   Or are you saying remove a color or have fewer strands around?  

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19 hours ago, DisneyMatt10 said:

Thank you all for the feedback so far. We are really looking at doing the Pixel Tree... *sighs* But I have a few questions...

1.) If we keep the sizing the way it is now our pixels would be about 9-1/2 inches apart around the bottom... Is that too far apart??

2.) Do you think a 360 degree tree would be better than a 180 degree tree?? --- Our show is set up for people to only view the show from the front of the property. That being said, how bad would a flat 180 degree tree look over there on the side of the yard where the current 360 degree spiral tree is at??

I just feel like by doing a 360 degree tree I'm spending a lot of time and money on 180 degrees worth of tree most people will never see. . . Thoughts??

Why not a 210 degree mega-tree?  My four mini trees are 210 degrees, and they look good from every angle that the public can see.  Saves: money, time constructing/sequencing/debugging, power consumption.

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2 hours ago, ItsMeBobO said:

Help me with this suggestion.  Do you mean buy all new shorter light strands?   Or are you saying remove a color or have fewer strands around?  

He stated that he had a blue spiral tree, and in the picture it looks to roughly match the height of his house and I'm sure it's probably only 16 channels.

I would suggest reusing the controller and probably half the lights and rework it to be about a 8 or 9 foot tree.

I have a blue spiral tree myself that's about 8 foot 16 channels with the strands doubled over and it still has plenty of wow factor.

And by the way my tree can set up in under 2 minutes because it's a collapsible design. 

 

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6 hours ago, Ebuechner said:

Also don't lose the spiral tree just downsize it, it still has plenty of wow factor it just doesn't have to be so big. 

While I like the idea of keeping the spiral tree, just downsizing it. . . I don't know where I would put it in the show, and I don't really have a need for it since I'm going with the pixel tree. . . That being said, it's lights will get re-used for our "Tune To" signs! :)

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10 minutes ago, DisneyMatt10 said:

While I like the idea of keeping the spiral tree, just downsizing it. . . I don't know where I would put it in the show, and I don't really have a need for it since I'm going with the pixel tree. . . That being said, it's lights will get re-used for our "Tune To" signs! :)

In the picture you provided you have a giant void right in the middle of your yard. I downsized tree would definitely look good right there in the middle maybe even to Anchor the corner.

Edited by Ebuechner

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