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Tman49

Will New & Old controllers work together?

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I haven't purchased my LOR equipment yet. I've concentrated on researching what I want to do display wise. I've decided to buy a 16 ch starter pack w/standard license. I'm using all blue and white LED lighting. My plan(subject to change) is to have the following on LOR. Mega tree 8 ch (8 double strands=1600 LED), 1 fire stick and 4 arches 6 or 8 ch (100 LED per ch per arch/fire stick= 2400 or 3200 LED for arches), 4 mini trees 1 ch ea (100 LED per tree), 7 rope lights 18' long 4 or 5 ch (7.2w ea= 50.4w), 2 Bethlehem stars sharing 2 ch (160 LED ea star). The mega tree and fire stick will have tops added. But I'm unsure how many lights I'll end up with those items. I'll have a lot more to my display, just not on the controller at this time since this will be my first try. So here's where I'm at folks. I haven't totaled the amp draw yet. However, with proper ch assignment, I think a 16 ch 30 amp controller will work. But I want to start with 32 channels. So here's my question. I've seen used LOR controllers for sale on ebay. Will these (I assume) older units work satisfactorily with the new 16 ch starter pack I plan to buy from LOR? I'm looking to save some $ on the second controller if I can. I'm on the email list to be notified of the spring sale. But I've read how fast items sell out, and my wallet and the sale may not be in sync.

Also, if anyone in the Central Ohio area is willing to get together for a tutoring session I will be very grateful.

Thanks in advance

Thomas

Edited by Tman49

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40 minutes ago, Tman49 said:

Will these (I assume) older units work satisfactorily with the new 16 ch starter pack I plan to buy from LOR?

Yes *

* However, the older controllers can NOT run the Enhanced Network. Thus, if you are mixing an older unit with a newer one, you won't be able to use the Enhanced network functionality. (And some of the Pixel controllers you will flat out *want* enhanced on there, so there's that.)

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I am behind on the newer Enhanced Network stuff as I have not run my show since 2014 but wanted to ask about this as well.

I have 21 older controllers (Gen 1 and 2) for stuff and will probably end up selling them this year but I thought that I saw an answer somewhere in here about being able to run both a regular network as well as an enhanced network together so that it is possible to run both older controllers and newer ones together?  I thought I read that you just would have to run 2 networks to do this?  I "assume" that would mean running maybe one of the newer "red" adapters for the enhanced network along with an older black adapter for the older controllers (I understand that the red adapter can run any controllers)?

I would appreciate any clarification on this, please.

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Do yourself a big/ huge favor.

Do not buy old stuff, do not buy off EBay or any other sites.

Sign up for the LOR news letter and hang around on the forums.

Normally there is a Spring sale. Great prices.

Buy all gen3 stuff. There is a lot of stuff being pushed on eBay fetching crazy prices that are old gen2 or older.

If you mix new and old you cause yourself an issue. First no warranty, no guarantee it’s gonna work since most people will not have their show set up for testing. Mixing old stuff with new will require additional networks.

So for now, download the software, try to learn as much as you can reading, practicing and asking questions.

Wait for the sale, it is well worth it. In the slim chance there is no sale in or before April then just buy directly from The light o Rama store and get their superior warranty and customer support.

Dont forget the Red adapters.

If you plan on pixels - buy a Pro level license from the beginning and you won’t have to worry about upgrading.

Some pixel controllers “require ELOR/ enhanced networks”

AC controllers will not sell out at the sale. Refer to the top portion of the post if the do - but highly unlikely. Peace of mind to buy from LOR even at normal prices. 

AC controllers do not require an enhanced network. Not until you mix RGB controllers in your show.

Have questions feel free to ask.

Happy Lighting 

JR

Edited by dibblejr
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2 hours ago, beeiilll said:

I am behind on the newer Enhanced Network stuff as I have not run my show since 2014 but wanted to ask about this as well.

I have 21 older controllers (Gen 1 and 2) for stuff and will probably end up selling them this year but I thought that I saw an answer somewhere in here about being able to run both a regular network as well as an enhanced network together so that it is possible to run both older controllers and newer ones together?  I thought I read that you just would have to run 2 networks to do this?  I "assume" that would mean running maybe one of the newer "red" adapters for the enhanced network along with an older black adapter for the older controllers (I understand that the red adapter can run any controllers)?

I would appreciate any clarification on this, please.

Yes, if you already have old and new run all your gen3 together and all of your older stuff gen1/ 2 on another network.

When buying adapters do yourself a favor and buy only red. A few dollars more but will run anything LOR has ATM.

I had 12 networks last season, did have 14 but due to rain, flooding in my yard I didn’t get all of my props up and was able to consolidate.

If you are talking about AC controllers enhanced not needed. Only until you start mixing RGB controllers into your show, then you need to bump up the speed.

Questions- feel free to ask.

JR

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4 hours ago, beeiilll said:

I am behind on the newer Enhanced Network stuff as I have not run my show since 2014 but wanted to ask about this as well.

I have 21 older controllers (Gen 1 and 2) for stuff and will probably end up selling them this year but I thought that I saw an answer somewhere in here about being able to run both a regular network as well as an enhanced network together so that it is possible to run both older controllers and newer ones together?  I thought I read that you just would have to run 2 networks to do this?  I "assume" that would mean running maybe one of the newer "red" adapters for the enhanced network along with an older black adapter for the older controllers (I understand that the red adapter can run any controllers)?

I would appreciate any clarification on this, please.

This year I ran 2 Networks, red adapter {High Speed Enhanced 500K} for the 5 CCB100-D RGB Controllers on Aux A, I ran 4 older Gen 2 CTB16PC Controllers on my old black USB485B adapter, 3 CTB16PC on the outside and 1 on the inside {LOR Regular Network, 115K}, so I needed the dual cat5 ability the black adapter {USB485B} adapter had to offer, as the inside controller would not be connected {daisy chained} to the outside CTB16PC units.  Everything ran perfectly fine together in this manner.  You just can't mix the Gen 3 CTB16PC units with the older units on the same network, well you could, but you'd lose a lot of the functionality of the Gen 3 units if you do, so they are better off on the Red HS USB485 adapter so you can use them in enhanced mode and 500k speed.   I don't have any Gen 3 CTB16PC units, just know they are definitely better suited to a separate network since they can use Enhanced, as well as 500K, where as Gen 2 or earlier versions of the CTB16PC are limited to 57.6k-115K and can't use enhanced networking.

So yes, the black adapter set as a Regular LOR Network, 57.6k-115K for older CTB16PC {pre Gen 3 units} works just fine with the Red HS Adapter as a 2nd Enhanced and 500K network for newer CTB16PC and RGB controllers.

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Just remember, the Enhanced mode is PER network settable. 💡 Use different colors of network cable, to help keep track of which network is which.

If you need more Dongles, just get the Red ones. They can run the older stuff (at the slower speeds), the price is only a few dollars more and offers future flexibility.

Besides speed (and Enhanced), The Gen 3 AC controllers offer built in snubbers (useful for LED strings) AND the amility to set individual channels to simple On/Off mode (usefull for any strings with electronic balasts)

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17 minutes ago, Orville said:

This year I ran 2 Networks, red adapter {High Speed Enhanced 500K} for the 5 CCB100-D RGB Controllers on Aux A, I ran 4 older Gen 2 CTB16PC Controllers on my old black USB485B adapter, 3 CTB16PC on the outside and 1 on the inside {LOR Regular Network, 115K}, so I needed the dual cat5 ability the black adapter {USB485B} adapter had to offer, as the inside controller would not be connected {daisy chained} to the outside CTB16PC units.  Everything ran perfectly fine together in this manner.  You just can't mix the Gen 3 CTB16PC units with the older units on the same network, well you could, but you'd lose a lot of the functionality of the Gen 3 units if you do, so they are better off on the Red HS USB485 adapter so you can use them in enhanced mode and 500k speed.   I don't have any Gen 3 CTB16PC units, just know they are definitely better suited to a separate network since they can use Enhanced, as well as 500K, where as Gen 2 or earlier versions of the CTB16PC are limited to 57.6k-115K and can't use enhanced networking.

So yes, the black adapter set as a Regular LOR Network, 57.6k-115K for older CTB16PC {pre Gen 3 units} works just fine with the Red HS Adapter as a 2nd Enhanced and 500K network for newer CTB16PC and RGB controllers.

Orville

You do not need enhanced or 500K to run Gen3 CTB16's unless connecting to a pixel controller that requires it.

Also the minimal cost between a red and black adapter, makes more sense to buy the red and also have at least one red spare.

As far as mixing gen3 and gen 1/2 on a same network, normally the network just doesn't work. In the event the gen3 is the first in the chain on that network, the rest do not work or only a channel or two work. I had that problem when I mistakenly connected a gen2 to a gen3 with my faces, every face after the gen3 had no lights. I then gave my best friend all of my gen1/2 and replaced with gen3's. Wasted $ since now mostly RGB's except for faces and a couple other props but I have lots of spares.

JR

Edited by dibblejr

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Thanks all!

I should mention that I started with LOR back in 2008 so am familiar with it and sequencing.  Just got away from it due to health, income, and other issues back in 2014 so am out of date from there on.

I have been on this forum for years as well but have not kept up with it either sadly.

I had to sell my house last month so may just sell off all my stuff but unsure at this moment.  I just wanted to get "clear" on the newer adapters and network stuff for this.  I built all my controllers except for 5, one from LOR in the beginning and then 4 from another person who had trouble with them and I bought them and repaired them.  Mine are all CTB16K Delux units that I built up for the max of 40 amp at the time with two 12 ga power cords and 12 ga dongles for lights and heat sinks.  I got a great deal on a couple dozen outside weatherproof plastic boxes that were from a cable company that was replacing them for the controllers.  The boards fit perfectly in them and they have a clear cover so I can see the red LED.

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12 hours ago, dibblejr said:

Do yourself a big/ huge favor.

Do not buy old stuff, do not buy off EBay or any other sites.

Sign up for the LOR news letter and hang around on the forums.

Normally there is a Spring sale. Great prices.

Buy all gen3 stuff. There is a lot of stuff being pushed on eBay fetching crazy prices that are old gen2 or older.

If you mix new and old you cause yourself an issue. First no warranty, no guarantee it’s gonna work since most people will not have their show set up for testing. Mixing old stuff with new will require additional networks.

So for now, download the software, try to learn as much as you can reading, practicing and asking questions.

Wait for the sale, it is well worth it. In the slim chance there is no sale in or before April then just buy directly from The light o Rama store and get their superior warranty and customer support.

Dont forget the Red adapters.

If you plan on pixels - buy a Pro level license from the beginning and you won’t have to worry about upgrading.

Some pixel controllers “require ELOR/ enhanced networks”

AC controllers will not sell out at the sale. Refer to the top portion of the post if the do - but highly unlikely. Peace of mind to buy from LOR even at normal prices. 

AC controllers do not require an enhanced network. Not until you mix RGB controllers in your show.

Have questions feel free to ask.

Happy Lighting 

JR

Thank you for your input. It's the answers I've been looking for. I'm retired and almost 70 years young and wish I'd gotten into LOR 10 years ago. So unless I get a large lottery windfall I won't be doing any pixels. I may want to go bigger, better than my blue/white LED, but I'll be happy in my lane. (Red adapter not needed with LED strings. Correct?)                                                                                                                

So I'll only buy new LOR items. I'm currently gathering hardware for my display and trying to save $ neccesary for LOR items. I downloaded the demo a few weeks ago and am trying to learn as much as possible.

Regards,

Thomas

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7 minutes ago, Tman49 said:

Thank you for your input. It's the answers I've been looking for. I'm retired and almost 70 years young and wish I'd gotten into LOR 10 years ago. So unless I get a large lottery windfall I won't be doing any pixels. I may want to go bigger, better than my blue/white LED, but I'll be happy in my lane. (Red adapter not needed with LED strings. Correct?)                                                                                                                

So I'll only buy new LOR items. I'm currently gathering hardware for my display and trying to save $ neccesary for LOR items. I downloaded the demo a few weeks ago and am trying to learn as much as possible.

Regards,

Thomas

Correct on not needing the red adapter if not needing the higher speeds.

However you should have a spare of some sort just in case one fails.

I took a look and see you are using S5 so not a lot of help from me other than if you need configuration help.

If you were using / testing S4 I could help you more with sequencing.

Woth that being said there are quite a few great people here that can assist with S5.

Still feel free to ask when/ if you need help. 

JR

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1 hour ago, dibblejr said:

Correct on not needing the red adapter if not needing the higher speeds.

However you should have a spare of some sort just in case one fails.

I took a look and see you are using S5 so not a lot of help from me other than if you need configuration help.

If you were using / testing S4 I could help you more with sequencing.

Woth that being said there are quite a few great people here that can assist with S5.

Still feel free to ask when/ if you need help. 

JR

I'm using S5? Who or what determined that? I read about S levels somewhere, but can't recall at the moment what it is about. Is that the version I automatically downloaded? I assume it's the latest and greatest LOR has to offer?

I hear ya about the spare adapter. Thanks, I assume you've experienced an adapter go bad?

You can bet your bottom dollar I'll NEED help with sequencing and anything else. 

Edited by Tman49
more info

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37 minutes ago, Tman49 said:

I'm using S5? Who or what determined that? I read about S levels somewhere, but can't recall at the moment what it is about. Is that the version I automatically downloaded? I assume it's the latest and greatest LOR has to offer?

I hear ya about the spare adapter. Thanks, I assume you've experienced an adapter go bad?

You can bet your bottom dollar I'll NEED help with sequencing and anything else. 

You did when you downloaded it. I have seen people get it wrong though,

I sent you a private message.

JR

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40 minutes ago, Tman49 said:

I'm using S5? Who or what determined that?

You did.  It's what you have listed in your profile for the software {LOR} version you are using {under your name on the left side of the comment screen}.  You have S5 version 5.2.2 in your profile listing, but you do not have a license level listed, as t hat is showing N/A.    And for folks to help answer your questions on anything that may be LOR based, such as the software, sequencing, etc., they really need to know what LOR Software version and what license level you have, as many factors come into how any question or questions you may have will be answered based on that info.  As each license level only allows specific things to be done.

Edited by Orville

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1 hour ago, Tman49 said:

Thank you for your input. It's the answers I've been looking for. I'm retired and almost 70 years young and wish I'd gotten into LOR 10 years ago. So unless I get a large lottery windfall I won't be doing any pixels. I may want to go bigger, better than my blue/white LED, but I'll be happy in my lane. (Red adapter not needed with LED strings. Correct?)                                                                                                                

So I'll only buy new LOR items. I'm currently gathering hardware for my display and trying to save $ neccesary for LOR items. I downloaded the demo a few weeks ago and am trying to learn as much as possible.

Regards,

Thomas

Actually buying older stuff isn't always that bad.  If you don't need faster or enhanced networks, then older CTB16PC units, such as Gen2 or V2 boards with 4.40 firmware are fine.   I use these in my display, but I do have a red adapter for my 5 RGB Smart Controllers and lighting, as they created severe lag times when connected with the older CTB16PC's on an original LO R  Regular network.   But from what you're running, from the description you give, older units c ould suffice and save you a few bucks for other things.

But since you aren't yet ready to get into pixels, you wouldn't need the red HS adapter, the new Gen 3 CTB16PC controllers are great, but, again, sometime and many times used units are fine as long as you know exactly what you're getting/buying.   When I started I bought my first CTB16PC used, never had an issue with it either.  Did sell it off as I no longer needed 5 controllers, now that I'm getting more and more into RGB Smart Pixels, I don't know how much longer I'll be needing 4 Gen 2 CTB16PC units, pe rhaps down to possibly 2 for my incandescent arches and blow molds.

But just saying, sometimes used is very good to be able to start and learn with, and a lot easier on your what you have fund-wise to work with.  Again, just be certain of what you' re buying used and you should be good to go.

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54 minutes ago, Orville said:

You did.  It's what you have listed in your profile for the software {LOR} version you are using {under your name on the left side of the comment screen}.  You have S5 version 5.2.2 in your profile listing, but you do not have a license level listed, as t hat is showing N/A.    And for folks to help answer your questions on anything that may be LOR based, such as the software, sequencing, etc., they really need to know what LOR Software version and what license level you have, as many factors come into how any question or questions you may have will be answered based on that info.  As each license level only allows specific things to be done.

OK, I didn't know what I was doing obviously. I thought, well never mind what I thought. When I purchase the starter kit, how is the version applied to my system? Do I just choose a version? I just edited the version to 4.4.2 Is that it? The license level will be standard. I understand how each level has conditions. I'm waiting to see if I can take advantage of the spring sale if it happens. Then I'll officially be a member.

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13 minutes ago, Tman49 said:

OK, I didn't know what I was doing obviously. I thought, well never mind what I thought. When I purchase the starter kit, how is the version applied to my system? Do I just choose a version? I just edited the version to 4.4.2 Is that it? The license level will be standard. I understand how each level has conditions. I'm waiting to see if I can take advantage of the spring sale if it happens. Then I'll officially be a member.

Yes, that's is software version, and without pixels S4 is good since we have a plethora of sequences available to help you. Once you pay for the upgrade you can select any version but there is a huge dif between S4 and S5. I can build you a vis for S4, I do it for a lot of people and only need a pic of your house and what lights you want to put where. That will let you see the lights "virtually" if it works there it will work on your actual show as long as you have working lights and equipment. Since it sounds like you will start with new equipment we can take broken equipment out of the equation. 

If you can sketch out your layout and how many controllers I can get the vis built and teach you how to use it. You will have a head start before receiving the controllers. The vis is only good for S4.

I will PM you my email and # (free of charge) as usual.

JR

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OK, sounds great. I sent a pm.

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