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New DMX Standard Released DMX512-A


bhays
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http://livedesignonline.com/news/dmx512_a_standard_0109/

I am not able to fully understand the change. Sounds like the new standard will allow for a faster refresh rate, remote device management which means fixtures can communicate back diagnostic data to the controller, text packets from the fixture back to the controller to provide status info...It also defines uses for pins 4 and 5...

http://www.artisticlicence.com/WebSiteMaster/App%20Notes/appnote004.pdf

The RDM feature sounds pretty cool... with bidirectional communication, it might be possible, for example, to have a graphic image of your moving head fixture on the pc screen and have that graphic update to show the actual position, color, gobo, etc. of the fixture.. sort of like SNMP in the data network realm...
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The standard has been arround for a couple of years. One of the major differences is the connectors. DMX USITT 1986 does not specify the connector as where the new DMX ESTA 512-A specifies the use of either RJ45 or the 5 pin XLR connector. It also tries to head off an incompatibilty issue between DIN 512 (european standard) and USITT 512. It also is intended to resolve incompatability issues between manufactures. (yeah that means martin...) along with strongly discouraging the practice of sending power on pins 4&5. Plus with alternate start codes sending manufacture specific data becomes possible - thus RDM(remote device management).This allows the user to send specific instructions to each fixture - for exampe: some newer fixtures allow the address to be changed remotely or to change the orrientation of the fixture -wheter it is under hung vs overhung

now if we could get ESTA to create a standard for scroller power ( 4 pins - 2 data 2 power) - god knows how many scroller controll boards we have released the magic smoke beacuse of using the incorrect power supply ( for those who know - a ColorSplash cannot be powered from a ColorRam PS and vice versa)

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