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What is a network


Lightnewbie
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A LOR network is a dedicated communication line delivering lighting data to the LOR controllers. Technically it is an RS 485 serial protocol over cat 5 cable. It can connect many controllers over long distances if required. An RS 485 LOR adaptor connects to your PC 's USB port with the proper drivers installed.

It is NOT the same kind of network as your home network and although it uses the same cable, one cannot connect to the other or sparks may fly.

There are other controllers by LOR and others which DO connect to an ethernet home type network but that is another story.

If I have added to your confusion please post back with questions.

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5 minutes ago, Lightnewbie said:

Can you explain the need for more than 1 network? 

Sure.  Short answer:  Capacity or equipment requirements

Now for more than a short answer.  The first one is capacity.  Each network speed has a capacity.  Because of the nature of the LOR protocol, there is not an absolute hard number of channels that a given network speed can handle, but there are some general rules of thumb.  A 115K non-Enhanced network can handle about 900 channels.  Higher network speeds can handle more channels and slower network speeds can handle fewer channels.  Using the Enhanced LOR ( ELOR ) protocol increases the number of channels that can be handled.

The second is equipment requirements.  Some equipment can not handle the faster network speeds, or they can not handle ELOR, or in some cases requires ELOR.  So on my year round landscape lighting, I have one network that operates in non-enhanced LOR protocol because you can not use ELOR protocol for input detection.  My second network runs with ELOR protocol.  For Christmas, I add an addition ELOR network at a faster speed.

This page will show the capabilities of the various controller:  https://www1.lightorama.com/network-speeds/

Note, using ELOR requires a Pro level software license.

 

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9 minutes ago, Lightnewbie said:

Can you explain the need for more than 1 network?

I'm sure Phil can give a much more detailed answer on this but let's look at an analogy to help try to understand it.

Roads are designed to carry a certain amount of traffic.  When the amount of traffic overwhelms the road, the traffic will have to slow down to accommodate it all.  Roads can be made bigger but cables can't.

As your show grows, you will get to a point where you will need another network because the one your using is no longer sufficient for all the traffic (data) that needs to travel on it.  Now, that being said, just like we have different roads, there are different speeds at which data needs to travel.  Pixel controllers typically require a faster route so that your lights don't experience slow down or what is called "lag" in a lot of technical pools.  "Lag" is simply when you see that the lights react just behind where you think they should.

So, short answer, more networks allow more traffic, and also allows you to have different types of controllers and lights without ever seeing that unwanted "lag".

 

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34 minutes ago, BluMan said:

I'm sure Phil can give a much more detailed answer

I bow to the network master k6ccc.

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4 minutes ago, PhilMassey said:

 

I bow to the network master k6ccc.

You may rise :)
 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have an older CTB16D controller. This is the first year I am using a pixie tree/controller. I have to use ELOR network but cannot get my older controller to work on enhanced. I updated firmware to v4.32 and still doesn't work. It won't load v4.40 (the latest). Is this a situation where I need to use 2 separate networks for my show? If so, how do I do that? Or do I need a new updated controller? (this controller is to run standard lights only)

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20 minutes ago, Artstaw said:

I have an older CTB16D controller. This is the first year I am using a pixie tree/controller. I have to use ELOR network but cannot get my older controller to work on enhanced. I updated firmware to v4.32 and still doesn't work. It won't load v4.40 (the latest). Is this a situation where I need to use 2 separate networks for my show? If so, how do I do that? Or do I need a new updated controller? (this controller is to run standard lights only)

Not all controllers support ELOR.  Have look at this page: https://www1.lightorama.com/network-speeds/

If your controller doesn't have a check mark in the ELOR column, you will need a second USB adapter. 

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2 hours ago, MattBrown said:

Not all controllers support ELOR.  Have look at this page: https://www1.lightorama.com/network-speeds/

If your controller doesn't have a check mark in the ELOR column, you will need a second USB adapter. 

OK so the controller in question does not support ELOR. But I can still use it in my show with other controllers that do support ELOR as long as I have a second adapter? That will be a lot easier and less costly than replacing my controllers. 

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34 minutes ago, Artstaw said:

OK so the controller in question does not support ELOR. But I can still use it in my show with other controllers that do support ELOR as long as I have a second adapter? That will be a lot easier and less costly than replacing my controllers. 

Get a spare (red) while you are at it.  Shipping will eat you (these are packaged just wrong, so they cant fit a Small flat rate box.

Small Box 8 11/16" x 5 7/16" x 1 3/4" $7.90 ) as most of it is for the first pound, but everybody seems to have added 'dimensional' weight rules (the greater of the calc), even for Ground.
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2 minutes ago, TheDucks said:

Get a spare (red) while you are at it.  Shipping will eat you (these are packaged just wrong, so they cant fit a Small flat rate box.

Small Box 8 11/16" x 5 7/16" x 1 3/4" $7.90 ) as most of it is for the first pound, but everybody seems to have added 'dimensional' weight rules (the greater of the calc), even for Ground.

 

2 minutes ago, TheDucks said:

Get a spare (red) while you are at it.  Shipping will eat you (these are packaged just wrong, so they cant fit a Small flat rate box.

Small Box 8 11/16" x 5 7/16" x 1 3/4" $7.90 ) as most of it is for the first pound, but everybody seems to have added 'dimensional' weight rules (the greater of the calc), even for Ground.

a spare red?

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2 hours ago, Artstaw said:

 

a spare red?

HS are Red, Regular are Black 🙂

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1 hour ago, TheDucks said:

HS are Red, Regular are Black 🙂

Oh yea. Just need a black though right? 

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35 minutes ago, Artstaw said:

Oh yea. Just need a black though right? 

Black will work up to network speeds of 115K.  Above that requires the red high speed adapters.  There is a quite small price difference between the two, so my standard recommendation is to buy the red ones.  That way, if you the higher speed, you will have the adapter.

 

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