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Your LOR Display in 2006 ??


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Hello all,

Been an insanely busy year for me (and still is), so I did not end up adding much more to my display than the previous year. We did add another 16 channels to my neighbors house, putting us up to 248 channels total.

I have to admit though, this years set-up has been very stress-free versus the usual August to thanksgiving rush to build, fabricate, wire, sequence, test, etc. maddness I usually experience. I was quite refreshed after the burn out I experienced from the previous year. I'm now primed and full of a great many new ideas and motivation for the 2007 season.

The display as I mentioned went up well and fairly fast, even with such limited time available. All the LOR components have again performed flawlessly. Except for one bad data cable and a few operator airheads (I mean errors), all is running great!

The visitors have been steady and building nightly. Last night was incredible with a completely full street when I got back from the southern part of Utah around 8, right up to 11 at shows end.

On that return trip back up north, we also stopped by briefly to Marty Slacks http://www.christmasutah.com display, and I can atttest he also has his LOR powered display running great, AGAIN! Very Very Nice Marty!

Anyway, Post your displays Displays success stories here so Dan, Mary, and the entire crew at LOR know how much we appreciate all their hard work and dedication and make it possible for us to build and operate our computer controlled displays.

They gave me the tools to build what I was only dreaming about for so many years.

Thanks you guys, and thanks Chuck Smith for Planet Christmas, as this is where I first read about this new upcoming product called lightorama.

Oh, and by the way, I was the first official web purchase from LOR, not that I was impatent or anything:D (me hovering over keyboard, refresh-refresh-refresh chanting OPEN, OPEN, OPEN!)

Dave Horting, Satisfied Customer!!

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Much the same story of success. By best measure of success is that I didn't need to contact LOR support for any issues this year. The few minor issues I had were all self-inflicted.

I had plans to add mini-trees this year, but ultimately didn't for a variety of reasons. They're on the plan for next year.

Early this year my neighbors to either side asked me to include their homes in my design (they wanted to add to the show for the benefit of the neighborhood). As it turned out, I deleted some things from my 2005 display and fabricated items for their homes so all three homes are quite similar in design style.

I participated in the LOR sale to get their controllers and wireless units, and everything worked flawlessly out of the box. I was a little slow in getting things setup outside, but other than a shortage of time there were no technical (or power) issues.

The LOR software and communications have run exactly as expected, shows starting and stopping on time.

Although I haven't done any publicity (we're content to enjoy the display ourselves and have it for anyone who chances to come this way), visitors have been increasing each night from word of mouth.

I have 10 songs in my list which run straight through. If we encounter any traffic issues I have an alternate show which is three songs and then a repeat to help people decide to move along.

As I said, my neighbors on either side are part of the show, and I think next year it will extend to the neighbors on either end of them. I've been concerned about the neighbor across the street, but his two complaints were hardly that. 1. Please turn up the music so I can hear it from my front porch, and 2. Extend the show from 10 p.m. to 10:15 so I can see one last little bit after watching the 10 p.m. news. You all should be as blessed as I am with neighbors like these.

Even the GFI gremlins have looked upon me with kindness - they were the bane of my display last year, this year (with much attention to being watertight) I haven't had a GFI trip on any of the houses.

Here's my fact sheet, given to anyone who asks:

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[align=center]“Lights on Jasmine” for 2006
Jasmine Street, Celebration, Florida[/align]
THE LIGHTS
This year’s display dramatically expands from a single house to a panorama of three homes which have lighting synchronized with each other.
Taking a cue from Celebration’s pre-1940 architectural time period, the display primarily uses “old fashioned” C7 bulbs which were introduced in the 1940s shortly after World War II ended. 2,892 C7 bulbs are used in the display – if all were on simultaneously they would require a total of 14,460 watts (equivalent of 240 standard 60-watt table lamps or 120 amps of electricity) – from the three homes.

THE MUSIC
All new for this year, the songs were selected from a pool of more than 400 candidates because they would effectively use many different features or lighting effects:
· The time period of the 15th Century (“Twelve Days of Christmas”) to the last few years (“Green Christmas”)
· Musical styles include New Age (“Joy to the World”), Rock (“Boughs of Holly”), and Contemporary (“Home for the Holidays”)
· Artists from the well known (Paul McCartney or Barry Manilow) to the lesser-known (Trans-Siberian Orchestra or Barenaked Ladies)

In an upbeat style, the program includes:
· Boughs of Holly (Trans-Siberian Orchestra)
· Christmas Jazz (Trans-Siberian Orchestra)
· Christmastime (Barenaked Ladies)
· [Dance of the Sugar Plum] Faeries [from The Nutcracker] (Mannheim Steamroller)
· Green Christmas (Barenaked Ladies)
· Home for the Holidays (Barry Manilow)
· Joy to the World (Mannheim Steamroller)
· Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! (Gloria Estefan)
· Twelve Days of Christmas (Roger Whittaker)
· Wonderful Christmastime (Paul McCartney)

THE SHOW
Computer control of the lights was introduced in 2004 (using 32 independent channels), expanded in 2005 and further increased to 128 channels in 2006. Wireless communication was introduced in 2006 keeping each home in constant communication with the other homes.
In addition to the entertainment value, the computer significantly reduces the power consumption of the entire display to less than 10% of what would be needed if all lights were on constantly.
Musical accompaniment is broadcast on 104.5 FM for drive-by visitors to enjoy. (Range is intentionally limited to a maximum of 100 feet from display.)

STATISTICS
Bulbs: 2,892
Channels of computer control: 128
Maximum potential power draw: 14,160 watts (120 amps)
Average power use at any particular moment on one home: 603 watts
Show Length: 30.4 minutes

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I downloaded the trial LOR Sequence Editor in Febuary and that began a mad frenzy to build a completely new animated display. I purchased six 16 channel controllers just before the sale, three more during the sale and one more last month for a backup that will be incorporated into the 2007 display.

I recently won an eBay sale for a MC DIO card. I plan to use the DIO channels to chase about 50 candy canes around the yard next year.

We had an army of friends scouring the Flea markets and yard sales looking for Blowmolds. My wife found several wireframes that we re-lighted. I built the megatree using some of the designs from Wayne Cremer's website, and ideas that came from discussions at the MiniPLUS we held at our house in August (Dan, Mary and Alex Baldwin all attended:]) I built specialized cables for all the display items with the intent that I would keep the controllers inside the house in a small closet.

I upgraded the electrical service from a 30amp 220v, to a 200amp 220v and ran 6 20amp circuits and 4 15amp circuits to the LOR controllers just to make sure I wouldn't need to upgrade in the future.

We built 15 of those wonderful little Gremler minitrees and put 300 minis on each one of them. A discussion with some of the people at the miniPLUS had me wondering if I did the wrong thing wrapping them with green garland. Now that they are out in the front yard dancing on their LOR channels, I don't wonder anymore. They turned out great and have just enough lights. Thank You Bill Gremler for a wonderful design. Your trees look perfect in my display!!!

Getting the upgrade to the sequencer with the graphic display in it has stripped 3 steps from my sequencing task. It has really cut the amount of time it takes for me to program the display. I made a large layout of my display on the wall above the monitor I use to sequence on. I took pics of the items in my display and made cutouts with the channel numbers on them. Then I pinned them onto the layout where they exist in the display. That made it really to bounce a sequence around the yard. It also give me the ability to change up the display in the future.

The LOR hardware has been a rock in my display. The only problem I had was my own fault for installing the R2 resistor array backwards. That board failed at the miniPLUS. Embarrassed, I am! Dan Baldwin replaced the kit board with a fully assembled board.

The sequencer, the show and schedule software and hardware utility have all performed flawlessly. I did searches here when there was something I didn't understand and always found just what I needed to get the hang of it.

There is so much wonderful information here. Dan and John are here helping us out when we can't get through a problem.

I couldn't be happier about the money I spent on my LOR equipment and software. The first time it lit off on it's own from the Show Player I was so proud. The compliments I get from all our neighbors, friends and visitors make me even happier and prouder! IMHO LOR was a great investment, and a very lucky find!

Right now I'm watching my display from a camera across the street, thinking about how different it will be in 2007...

Thank You LOR! Thank You PlanetChristmas and Thank You to every PC member!

jeff

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I never could have imagined the possibilities that LOR affords me. There are thousands of happy people, people who will always remember the experience of visiting "that Christmas display", because of what LOR allows me to create.

P.S. I guess I'd better plan a trip up to West Haven!

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I have to give a big thumbs up for LOR. If there was nothing like LOR out there, I would just have put up a few lights like I have in years past. It was because of LOR that I really got into the Christmas Light Spirit and went crazy.

I have had hundreds (Maybe even a thousand) of cars stop to watch the show. To those that I do talk to, they are amazed and it really gets them into the Christmas Spirit.

I have found my new Hobby. A big thank you to everybody here at PC and LOR.

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I am surprised how well it has gone for me. My prior three years were all SSRs and VB programming. I started playing with the LOR software in the middle of last Dec and was hooked with how much easier and more powerful it was. Then I saw a friends 16-channel LOR setup and the fades and things he did and knew I had to get some of their hardware too. So I bought 8 of the 16Ds and replaced many of my SSRs and raced to get it all done. Everything was easy to hook up and it all worked like a champ. My shows have lots more energy now and I'm just scratching the surface.

I know of at least 3 people now that have started this hobby and bought LOR stuff since coming by our place over the years. Its cool to see it spread around. We spent Friday night and Sunday night looking at all of the animated displays in the STL area that I know about.

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I got the fever last year in Mountain View Arkansas visiting my sister. I guess I had seen some of the pub about Carsons display and the subsequent Miller Lite commerical, but it did not register. We said yeah sure we can go look at light in booming mountain view and went cynically with a margarita. Loh and behold we get there and it is an awesome 32 channel show starting off to Wizards and had 3 other songs. I was impressed. He had his website posted, or at least I think he did and I started my research. Discovered that LOR was the way to go and bought our controller and software in March? I piddled around and did not even notice I did not have the controllers until May and emailed Dan he was waiting on me to tell him what I wanted , I had bought the starters kit and left off some details. He had sent me an email I had not responded to. I told him what I wanted and had the box within days where it sat again for weeks. I finally started figuring out what I needed in September and my wife has been buying lights since then. We are up to 4 songs and LORSEQUENCES.com has been an immense help. We do not have a lot of traffic yet, but we are in an isolated neighborhood in Friendswood, Tx. The show has only been running 3 nights and word of mouth is spreading. I pulled up last nite to find on of my friends who had been over 2 weeks ago when we were building the mini trees and found out what we were planning. He came back to see it and was wowed. He could not believe we had figured it all out. I could not of course with out all the help from this board; Belkin Mod, how to make minitrees out of tomatoe plant stands, MP3 song formatting, etc. Thanks for the great community we have here and the joy it is bringing folks!!



The Rhodes - Friendswood Texas.

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I am very happy. This year I built my first "ITEM" to use in the show. I have 24 Light-O-Rama channels. Arround 5000 lights (2000 less then planed). I have all the basics down this year, I found power in the house to use, color wash is done, I am using more then 1 controller. Strobe lights (Thanks ChristmasDisplas.net), all of the basics and ground has been covered and I feel that I can now expand next year learning from this small but a little complex light show. Pictures will be comming soon! Thanks to everyone for your help. And Dan, Mary & Company. Thanks you making a really great product!





--Daniel L

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