Jump to content
Light-O-Rama Forums

Newbie Getting Myself Confused - Clarification Needed Please


logandc99

Recommended Posts

I have been lighting up our property for last 8 years, static display only and want to get into the musical sequencing. Have been reading the forums, spec sheets on controllers, the auschristmas pdf on lighting and seem to be getting a bit confused. Our property is fenced so we have our gates open and people wander into the property to get in amongst the lights esp the kids so safety is very important. Excluding rope lights, most of my lights are led with transformers that seem to step down from 240v to 24v. I try to run everything with RCDs also.

I had been looking at getting the 16 channel Showtime PC starter package (starting slowly) but notice that they are AC power input and output running at 240 or 110V ( I would be using a 240V here). However, I read somewhere that lights with transformers are not ideal with this controller as the fading and twinkling etc from the LOR controller can damage the transformer (is that correct or is using transformers ok?). Therefore I would need to plug 240V lights into the controller but that didn't seem a good idea from a safety point of view as I don't really want people wandering amongst 240V lights (electrocuting people at your display just isn't a good look).

I would much prefer to use low voltage lights from the safety point of view so (and finally I get around to my main question.... sorry) do I have to purchase the AC powered residential Showtime PC controller to get the musical lights experience or can i just get the CMB-16D-QC, hook up a power supply like the ones Ray Wu sells, stick it in a enclosure, wire in my 24V LEDs, connect it to my PC via Cat5 cable and have my lights dancing to music via the LOR software?

If I am way off the mark here..... be gentle :-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you are using a PC or one of the Director products, they can't tell if you have the AC or DC controllers plugged in. They work the same as far as the software is concerned. Having all DC controllers will be no issue as far as the software and show go.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks klb,

I thought ( and hoped) that would be the case as I really wanted to have low voltage lights for the show.

As a lot of my lights seem to be LED 24v using a step down transformer (240v in, 24V out) with little 8 function controllers, is it ok to discard the transformer, cut the wire on the lights just passed the controller and connect wires straight into the CMB-16D?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

discard the transformer, cut the wire on the lights just passed the controller and connect wires straight into the CMB-16D?

Probably. If these light strings have multiple channels, they need to be common-anode (common positive) in order to work with the CMB-16D. Most are. You are correct that the 8-function controller will be discarded, because LOR will control your lights.

The best strategy is this: Start with a light string that will not be needed in case it has an accident. Get a DC power supply of the proper voltage. (It sounds like you need 24V.) Cut off the little controller that comes with the lights and see if you can figure out which wire is positive. Hook the wires up to the power supply to see if you can get the individual channels to light. If everything works properly, label the wires and hook them up to the DC controller.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Steven,

That's very helpful, thanks. I found a video on the auschristmas website that showed exactly what you described above so I think, as you said, that is the best strategy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes I have downloaded and read the manual and yes it was very helpful. The pictures were especially useful.

All the info and advice provided has helped me decide that I will get into RGB lighting in a small way for this Christmas so I can learn the ropes.

Maybe get into using my 24v lights in the musical part of the display next year ( although it's tempting to do both..... i.e. 32 channels instead of just 16, but I just need to remember to walk before running)

Thanks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
×
×
  • Create New...