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Hey all,

I'm new to all of these computer controller lighting displays, but would like to get something up and running by Christmas 2006. I've been researching the LOR software and had some questions (probably pretty low level, but I'm going to ask anyways).

Can the LOR software control any other PC I/O boards other than their own?? I would like to build most of the hardware myself, whether that includes a LOR hobbyist boards or not. I would like to steer clear of the "Showtime" products.

Also, do the LOR hobbyist boards have options like dimming and creating running lights....etc.

Any info would really help and be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance, Phil

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Hello Phil and welcome to PLANETCHRISTMAS!!!! We are very happy to have you here.

To answer your question, yes.... LOR can control other hardware. LOR is capable of communicating with Dasher, X10 and Digital I/O cards.

Now the sticky part... when LOR is controlling LOR hardware, it will perform effects like shimmer, twinkle, dimming, ramped fades ... etc ... If you havn't done so, you can download a demo of LOR from the LOR website and play with the software, create sequences to get a feel for what it will do.

If your running X10 and DIO, these nifty features are gone. Basically you get on/off.

Hope this helps..

-- Bob

If this post is late, I got sidetracked and didnt finish right away ...

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Thanks for the info Bob. Much appreciated.

I do have 1 more stupid question. I assume more than one digital I/O board and/or LOR hobyist controller can be controlled at a time?? Otherwise the I/O count you can have would be very limited. How do you do this??

Thanks again, Phil

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psawatsky wrote:

Thanks for the info Bob. Much appreciated.

I do have 1 more stupid question. I assume more than one digital I/O board and/or LOR hobbyist controller can be controlled at a time?? Otherwise the I/O count you can have would be very limited. How do you do this??

Thanks again, Phil



Hi Phil, nice to see someone else from BC in here if you are in the lower mainland there a few of us here from BC to trade tips and get together with once in a while.

In answer to your question you can control as many DIO boards / channels as you can stuff in the computer. and LOR can be daisy chained together with standard cat5 cables up to i believe 255 units (i think) if you go to http://www.lightorama.com you can go to the support section and download the manual for the ctb16d and ctb08d boards to see how they linkup.

Dean
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Like dean had said 255 is the max amount of boards you can controll. But you have the option of 8 channle boards or 16, they can run together but if you got 255 16 channles you would have 4080 channles to work with!



--Daniel L

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Daniel wrote:

1 Computer that can controll 255 boards x 16 channel controller = 4080

LOR can only handle 240 units today... That number is actually going to be reduced to 224 per serial port in LORII but you will be able to run multiple serial ports or the equivalent through a USB connection...

Also the LOR protocol supports upto 128 channels per board.
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LightORama wrote:

LOR can only handle 240 units today... That number is actually going to be reduced to 224 per serial port in LORII but you will be able to run multiple serial ports or the equivalent through a USB connection...

Also the LOR protocol supports upto 128 channels per board.

What?!?!?!? You mean I will only be able to control 3,584 channels per serial port in LOR II? Well that sucks, my display next year calls for at least 3,600 channels! :laughing:
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Quick question about Dasher.....

I have two 8 channel Dasher control boxes.....Planning to purchase LOR after the first of the year. Would you connect the Dasher boxes inline with the LOR boxes (using Cat5) or would you actually require two serial ports to control each of the different type boxes?

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Corey wrote:

Quick question about Dasher.....

I have two 8 channel Dasher control boxes.....Planning to purchase LOR after the first of the year. Would you connect the Dasher boxes inline with the LOR boxes (using Cat5) or would you actually require two serial ports to control each of the different type boxes?

You need two serial ports to run both Dasher and LOR.
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  • 2 weeks later...

LightORama wrote:

Corey wrote:
Quick question about Dasher.....

I have two 8 channel Dasher control boxes.....Planning to purchase LOR after the first of the year. Would you connect the Dasher boxes inline with the LOR boxes (using Cat5) or would you actually require two serial ports to control each of the different type boxes?

You need two serial ports to run both Dasher and LOR.



One other quick question.....can you have a mix of lor and dasher in the same sequence or would they need to be separate shows.
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Corey wrote:

One other quick question.....can you have a mix of lor and dasher in the same sequence or would they need to be separate shows.

You can mix LOR and Dasher in a sequence. Each channel in a sequence is independent of the other channels. What I mean is that channel 1 can be (LOR Unit 01 - Circuit 8) Channel 2 can be (Dasher Unit 2 - Circuit 3).... That would be pretty confusing but it would work.
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Just curious why the original poster wants to shy away from the "Showtime Products"??? I love my showtime products, and will buy more when I can. They are very well built, and it is great just to take it out of the box, and plug it in, and WALAH ready to run.

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Steven Singleton Jr. wrote:

Just curious why the original poster wants to shy away from the "Showtime Products"???



I would assume the difference in cost is the reason..

Greg
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Maybe, but diff in cost is not bad when you consider the time, and materials that you would have to buy to make a comparable product. Still a great price, and MUCH cheaper than other alternatives.......

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The only reason I am going to shy away from the Showtime product is that from what I've read you can't connect each 8 channel side to a different power source. This basically cut your power in half on a 16 channel board.

DAN: Is it possible to mod the 16D's to have two input power suplies (20Amp each)?

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Not sure where you got your information, but the 16 channel card CAN and DO use 2 SEPERATE 15 amp inputs. If it didn't I would be sunk with my display because I only have 16 channels and ALOT of lights. Each 8 channel side can use its own 15 amp input. If that is the ONLY reason you were shying away from them then yoy have learned a thing, and now can buy right out of the box. Trust me they are very well made, and if you build your own you MIGHT save 20-30 dollars. That is if you don 't mess anything up and have to buy more supplies. Excellent product, and I hope to be able to buy at least 4 more 16 channels showtime controllers.

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MichaelC wrote:

DAN: Is it possible to mod the 16D's to have two input power suplies (20Amp each)?

Michael

As Steven mentioned you can do this. The CTB16D can have one or two 20 amp feeds. The card is designed with two 20 amp feeds in mind. There are two fuses, one for each side of the card and a separate connectors to feed each of the fuses. There are also some additional connectors available on the card to allow you to "jump" power from one side of the card to the other if you only attach one power input.

The LOR1602W is the 30 amp Showtime unit that contains a CTB16D. The LOR1602W comes with two power cords each supplying up to 15 amps. The reason that the LOR1602W is rated at 30 amps (2 x 15) rather than 40 (2x20) is that the plug and power cord we use are only rated at 15 amps.

You can check the specs on these products at http://www.lightorama.com/support.html
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Steven Singleton Jr. wrote:

Maybe, but diff in cost is not bad when you consider the time, and materials that you would have to buy to make a comparable product. Still a great price, and MUCH cheaper than other alternatives.......



I may have made out better than most do, but when I purchased my hobbyist boards last year, I bought the plastic outdoor enclosure boxes, (designed for cable TV use) from a link posted here on PC. I picked up 12 for $60 (& that included shipping!).

I bought the 6 foot extension cords I needed (16 per controller) at Big-lots (they are 16 gauge, not 18!) for $.88 a piece (plus tax).

Total additional costs added to the hobbyist boards for the 16 channel CTB16D, to essentially make a "showtime version" was only $20.36 per 16 channel board.

I figure I saved a bundle, and I enjoyed building my units. (If I had more time I would have loved building the boards themselves, but figuring in the cost for components, Dan sells them assembled for only a little more than I would pay for just the components, (and he has them tested), so it would not be cost effective for me to actually populate the board myself..

Greg
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I also enjoy building my boxes and was initially surprised how quickly I could do it. If you are able to get good containers (I have three different types, ranging from a large 10 qt plastic "shoebox" to the MECI Primestra boxes Greg was talkign about to the infamous RiteTime boxes) at a good price then you are set. I am able to pick up cords even cheaper (6 ft at Home Depot for 31 cents a piece on Monday) and the male cords I was able to buy a bunch of 9 foot three wire 16 AWG ones from Jeff T when he found the motherlode on EBay. Like Greg, my completed boxes for this next will cost me less than $18 to build a a few hours of time. The $100 difference in price not to mention it would cost more to ship the Showtime Boxes is enough to make it a big deal for me.

3 Showtime 1602 = $869.85 or $18.21 per channel
5 Hobbyist 1600D = $899.95 plus (5 x $18 for supplies) $90 = $989.95 or $12.37 per channel.

It pays to watch for sales! Everyone makes fum of the "Jeff Stores" (Jeff T. and Me) but when we see deals we stock up for later usage!

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Dan:

Sorry to miscommunicate. I meant to ask if it is possible to get the LOR1602W in a 2x20 configuration.

Based on your answer, I would assume the only difference is the power cords and fuses you use. 20 Amp vs 15 amp is a 33.3% boost in the amount of power that can be handled and it is significant. If the only thing holding back the larger throughput is a couple of heavier duty cords, why wouldn't you just use the larger cords for the showtime units to start with?

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MichaelC wrote:

If the only thing holding back the larger throughput is a couple of heavier duty cords, why wouldn't you just use the larger cords for the showtime units to start with?
A good question. The main reason was the plug. A 120V 20amp plug has 1 vertical and 1 horizontal blade on it (plus the ground).... I did not know how many people actually had the 20 amp recepticals in their houses (a straight slot and a T slot) so I just went with the 15amp to make it universial.
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