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DON"T CHANGE THE CHANNEL LAYOUT!!! Just add to it if you move things.  I moved my controllers to make it more efficient and use fewer cords this year..... big mistake to do it late in the year.  After I figured everything out I had 5 sequenced songs I couldn't use, took too much time to reorder them. So last years song was a mirror of this year.  More channels, and effects, but same ole songs.... didn't feel good not to use a couple hundred of hours of sequencing.

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I agree. I leave the channels the same normally unless I add to them. Mean more about changing the element placement per year. 3rd year now and each year I have flipped, added, taken out elements ect. Thinking if this is needed or if the people even notice the element there or not.

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hey Jeff Awsome Display how many chan. are u running and how many lights?

If you mean this Jeff, then thank you. :) We have 70k-75k lights and can have up to 304 channels... but realistically we run about 270-ish. It's nice having spare channels all over the place "just in case".

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Why is changing the channels a big deal don't you simply export the configuration file with the new layout then import it into the other sequences. The only problem I have had doing this is if I have inserted a new channel it seems to leave the programming in the same place so they are a channel out. A big copy and paste sorts this out.

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Each year my display is moved around, I never keep it the same, it is ALWAYS different.

 

@Tony:  Apparently you haven't tried it yet, if you have 80 channels available and are using only 72, but add 8 new elements and just try to import an old channel config file for a previous year after adding in the new channels, it can be disasterous to the point of creating one really messed up sequence!     Especially if you did add the channels to different tracks and moved them to where you want them, instead of leaving them at the bottom of each track.  And if you just use one main track and add channels anywhere but the bottom, everything will get shifted, and, once again, you have one big headache trying to straighten it out.

 

So yes, it can be a big deal if you just add in channels whereever you want them.   And many folks, myself included, when starting out have made this mistake in their second year, they add a new controller and new channels, or just add new channels that may not have been used in the previous year, but don't add them to the bottom, they add them in at points between existing channels in each track or in their main track, then they export this new channel config with the same name {big mistake} and then try and import it into their prior years sequences, then jump in here yelling for help trying to figure out what they did wrong to mess their sequences up so badly!

 

So every year, if/when my display grows or shrinks and I have a new channel config, all new channels go to the bottom of each track, and the main working track to copy from to the other {actual display} tracks that run the real show.  And every year that new channel config will have it's own unique name, such as 2013_Halloween-48.lcc or 2013_Christmas-48.lcc, which denotes I only sed 48 channels in 2013, previous years were such as 2012_Halloween-80.lcc and 2012_Christmas-80.lcc   I always start with the year and end with the channel count I'm using, this way there is no confusion as to what channel config file goes with what sequences, since I am also using that same naming convention now for my sequences.

 

So for 2014, those filenames will change to 2014_Halloween-xx.lcc, where xx will be the channel count for that years display.

 

But just reimporting an old config file into a new sequence or a new config file into an older sequence can create some rather messy results!  Fortunately if you haven't saved it after the import, you can UNDO it and then resave the sequence back as it was originally, but if you saved it, you can't undo it.  And if you've saved it more than once, your original .bak {backup} is also now gone and no way to revert back to the original.      So yes, it's a big deal if you are not fully aware of how importing an old or new config file will affect an older or even a new sequence.

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I have never run the same display year over year, so my channel layout always changes.  Some stuff, like gutter lights and landscape shrubs, usually stay in the same spot in the channel layout, but everything else changes.

 

I keep Channel Layouts (.lcc) and Visualizer files in the same folder year after year (e.g. 2013 Display Config) and also keep sequences in folders depending on what year it is.  It's kind of difficult to keep track of certain things, especially audio) when you have an unorganized computer.

 

I liked Orville's comments, I may start doing something similar for next year's display.

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This was our 5th year with an animated display, we have more then 300 lor channels and a ton of dumb rgb, as well as pixels that we added this year. the layout is normally the same, and we add a few new elements each year. but here is what I can say from my experience thus far, (and im sure many of the master will chime in as well!) , never EVER change your channel config on the main track, even if you do not plan to use certain elements next year, simply add your new stuff to the bottom. use tracks to keeps things together that belong together. that way you should never have to change your sequences year over year.

 

I don't necessarily keep the same controllers in the same place, or the same elements connected to the same channel numbers year over year. once the display is setup, we then put up all the LOR controllers, and just write down controller number and channel number for each element. once every element is hooked up, I then take the list inside and update all of the channels via the channel config. I then export that config with the a name and the current year. then I import the newly revised config into each sequence I plan to use for the year, then update the sequence with whatever new elements or changes I want to make.

 

by using tracks to keep things together, you never have to change the original channel layout re: the channel property grid, etc.... I have tracks based on color (red, green, blue or white) and/or position (front, left, right, top, bottom) this makes sequencing much easier and cleaner each year.

 

sorry for the long winded post, but I made a huge mistake year 2, when I though I could simply change around my channel order in the main track. I will never make that mistake again. took many days/hours to recover from that one.

 

hope it helps.

 

Happy New Year.

 

-troy

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For the most part, we keep the primary things in their same places each year. I move around the eye candy props to wherever I think they'll look good. When we find that "perfect" place for things they tend to stay in that same place for a few years. We're at the point now where there are things that get a year off, and things that cease to exist when we tire of them.

Having said that, just moving things around makes the display look fresh each year - even if everything is the same props and such. IMHO, the biggest variable is the songs. Adding new songs and retiring (or placing on hiatus) some old ones goes a long way to keeping things freah-looking for viewers.

As for the physical setup of a sequence, I advise NEVER changing the order of channels in your Master track. If you retire a prop, just delete the sequencing from those channels, and clear the channel config stuff, BUT LEAVE THE CHANNEL PHYSICALLY IN PLACE. Add ALL new channels to the bottom of the list and you'll have exactly ZERO problems updating sequences from year to year.

Second sentence in paragraph 2 should read "fresh" instead of "freah".

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Each year my display is moved around, I never keep it the same, it is ALWAYS different.

 

@Tony:  Apparently you haven't tried it yet, if you have 80 channels available and are using only 72, but add 8 new elements and just try to import an old channel config file for a previous year after adding in the new channels, it can be disasterous to the point of creating one really messed up sequence!     Especially if you did add the channels to different tracks and moved them to where you want them, instead of leaving them at the bottom of each track.  And if you just use one main track and add channels anywhere but the bottom, everything will get shifted, and, once again, you have one big headache trying to straighten it out.

 

So yes, it can be a big deal if you just add in channels whereever you want them.   And many folks, myself included, when starting out have made this mistake in their second year, they add a new controller and new channels, or just add new channels that may not have been used in the previous year, but don't add them to the bottom, they add them in at points between existing channels in each track or in their main track, then they export this new channel config with the same name {big mistake} and then try and import it into their prior years sequences, then jump in here yelling for help trying to figure out what they did wrong to mess their sequences up so badly!

 

So every year, if/when my display grows or shrinks and I have a new channel config, all new channels go to the bottom of each track, and the main working track to copy from to the other {actual display} tracks that run the real show.  And every year that new channel config will have it's own unique name, such as 2013_Halloween-48.lcc or 2013_Christmas-48.lcc, which denotes I only sed 48 channels in 2013, previous years were such as 2012_Halloween-80.lcc and 2012_Christmas-80.lcc   I always start with the year and end with the channel count I'm using, this way there is no confusion as to what channel config file goes with what sequences, since I am also using that same naming convention now for my sequences.

 

So for 2014, those filenames will change to 2014_Halloween-xx.lcc, where xx will be the channel count for that years display.

 

But just reimporting an old config file into a new sequence or a new config file into an older sequence can create some rather messy results!  Fortunately if you haven't saved it after the import, you can UNDO it and then resave the sequence back as it was originally, but if you saved it, you can't undo it.  And if you've saved it more than once, your original .bak {backup} is also now gone and no way to revert back to the original.      So yes, it's a big deal if you are not fully aware of how importing an old or new config file will affect an older or even a new sequence.

Orville. Thanks for your advice looks like I got away with it when I inserted a new channel. I think I need to understand how the tracks work a little better This is my 2 nod year and last year with two controllers I created two tracks one for each controller. This year I have 5 controllers and I inserted most of the new channels in track 1 at the bottom. I was thinking of tidying up next year and moving the 16 channels in track 2 to track 1. I will certainly insert any extra ones at the bottoms and try to understand how to use tracks correctly.

Thanks. Tony

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For the most part, we keep the primary things in their same places each year. I move around the eye candy props to wherever I think they'll look good. When we find that "perfect" place for things they tend to stay in that same place for a few years. We're at the point now where there are things that get a year off, and things that cease to exist when we tire of them.

Having said that, just moving things around makes the display look fresh each year - even if everything is the same props and such. IMHO, the biggest variable is the songs. Adding new songs and retiring (or placing on hiatus) some old ones goes a long way to keeping things freah-looking for viewers.

As for the physical setup of a sequence, I advise NEVER changing the order of channels in your Master track. If you retire a prop, just delete the sequencing from those channels, and clear the channel config stuff, BUT LEAVE THE CHANNEL PHYSICALLY IN PLACE. Add ALL new channels to the bottom of the list and you'll have exactly ZERO problems updating sequences from year to year.

Second sentence in paragraph 2 should read "fresh" instead of "freah".

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