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How to turn on more lights


Sharpsburg Lights
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I am setting up my show and I am tightening up the show to just the house and a few props right in front of the house.  I only have 16 channels this year. I will have  the entire yard set up with spotlights on cutouts and blow molds.  I don't want these in the show, but I'm willing to sacrifice a channel to turn them off and on.   This one channel will not be able to handle all the lights. I will run the separate power to those lights. I want some sort of on off switch that light o Rama can control with that channel. 

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Unfortunately even with a switch you'd still have all those lights on that single channel, and you say the channel can't handle all the lights, you'd have to sacrifice more than one channel to do split the lights so they could be turned off/on with a channel using a standard switch.

The only option that may work is if you use an 120VAC relay, wire the coil to run off the channel and wire the NO contact and wiper contact of the relay to an 120VAC power source, such as an extension cord, cut the neutral side of the extension cord {wide plug side}, you may need an multi-meter to verify which is hot and which is neutral.   The neutral side becomes the switch to turn on everything from that channel.  One side of the neutral goes to the relays NO Contact, the other end of the neutral goes to the wiper, when the relay is energized the NO contact will close, thus powering what is plugged into the extension cords female ends.  You plug the extension cord male plug directly into an powered outlet, power always on, now you should be able to control the lights with a single channel from your controller.

Just make sure the relays contacts can handle the amperage load of all lights you're powering, and that the extension cord also has the capacity to handle that amperage as well.

Good Luck.

BTW: MPJA has a 120VAC 16 AMP relay for around $4.95, here's a link to it:

16 AMP 120VAC Relay

Hopefully this will fit your need.

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And if you have a Gen 3 controller, use the hardware Utility (HU) to set the channel to ON/OF mode . 

Select unit to configure: Clicked the Config button: Then click the Advanced Configuration button: Set the Channel to ON/OFF Only : Then click Update Units Config

Note: this setting should also good for strings that don't tolerate other modes (electronic ballasts). Prevents the oops while testing

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Depending on the amount of lights and what kind you are using......LED vs Incandescent.  I have 1 channel that simply turns on lights all over the place but they are all LED light strings and LED standard light bulbs and LED floods.  I even changed out the blowmold lights to LED.  However most of the standard household LED light bulbs dont react well to rapid on and off or fading.  But if the channel just turns them on for the duration of a song then it should be no problem!

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If I use standard LED bulbs like found in a basic lamp, I make sure the package says dimmable, these usually have no issue with fast on/off and slow fades.  But if they aren't dimmable, I try to avoid them as those just can't cut it with fast off/on commands.

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