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Setup Question


Ponddude
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As I suspected, I have fallen in love with the idea and the capabilities that DMX offers. I have decided to build my own gobo lights and what the ability to control them with DMX. I have found a great kit I can use to control the lights, but I have an issue that there is no DMX Out port. This means that I will not be able to add them to my DMX network....I think. The attached picture shows what my current set up. As you can see, there is only 1 DMX Out left, coming from the last Splash Jr. Is there a way to have multiple outs? What I am thinking is a device that lets one DMX input come in, which then gets split into several DMX Outs....kind of like a USB hub.

Here is the kit I bought...
http://store.qkits.com/moreinfo.cfm/VM138

The picture of my setup is attached. Any ideas?

Attached files 172318=9861-Slide1.jpg

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Greg, DMX is cool isn't it! I have some more growth left with LOR controllers that I bought last year, but I may opt to go more DMX DIY to get channel capacity beyond 2010. I think $ per channel with DIY DMX, starts to come WAY down. I still love LOR and will always use it, but minimizing cost is one thing to continually look at. A few comments.

First there is such a thing as a DMX Splitter. They are not inexpensive. The least expensive I found was Chauvet's at around $80-$90. They go up from there. No one anywhere recommends making a Y connection and using it due to reflections and signal degredation.

Next is termination. I can't get a good look at your picture, but it looks like the Splash Jr is on the end. This is good, because you can terminate it there on that last output. Since your universe is just a few fixtures, and the length between them should not be too significant, you may get away with putting your home made yoke on the end, and don't terminate the universe, and see if things still work. In some of my digging on this, there was no clear message what would or could happen in shorter universes. In testing, see if you get unplanned effects happening. I terminated in 2008 and had no problems. Wirekat did not, and had no problems.

Let's see what others have to say.

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zman wrote:

...

Next is termination. I can't get a good look at your picture, but it looks like the Splash Jr is on the end. This is good, because you can terminate it there on that last output. Since your universe is just a few fixtures, and the length between them should not be too significant, you may get away with putting your home made yoke on the end, and don't terminate the universe, and see if things still work. In some of my digging on this, there was no clear message what would or could happen in shorter universes. In testing, see if you get unplanned effects happening. I terminated in 2008 and had no problems. Wirekat did not, and had no problems.

Let's see what others have to say.
I used 10 universes of DMX in 2008 (although by using the iDMX-1000's only 256 channels of each universe could be utilized) with the help of three 5-way DMX splitters and two four channel DMX managers. I only terminated the two universes having the moving head and moving yoke fixtures. I did not terminate the LED tube lights, Colorado3 wash lights, fog, snow, or the LED video grid.

I had no problems at all mainly because of the short cable runs around the house, but I did have several terminators on hand in case I needed them.

With that said, terminators are cheap and if wired correctly will NEVER hurt the signal so the practice of using them is smart.

Charles
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Termination shouldn't be my problem. The unit that I will be building is self terminating, kind of like the iDMX. The purpose of building my own gobo's...1 is for the challenge, and 2 is because they will be much cheaper.

zman...I did see that splitter by Chauvet, however apparently that isn't a good one. The only ones that are decent are the most expensive...obviously.

Now, I have another question. Does anyone know of a DMX splitter I could make myself? Possibly the PCB and could solder and the whole 9 yards.

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Looking here:

http://www.velleman.be/downloads/0/modules/usermanual_vm138.pdf

Termination is selected with one of the dip switches on the board.

As for the way it is wired, typically all DMX fixtures just pass through the DMX signal, wiring it in a way to minimize the side branch from the cables. For example, if you had the card mounted 5 inches from the back panel of the case, you would run the cable from the in jack to the card, and a separate cable from the card to the out... This way, the side branch is all of the 1/4 inch long from the connector on the card, to the RS-485 chip on the card.

There should be no reason you can't do the same with this module, and not need a splitter...

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So if I understand you correctly, you are saying there is a way to create a DMX Out on this card?

What if I were to apply a male XLR connector to the same connection, would that work?

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Yes.. You just want to be sure your cable runs from the in jack to the card, to the out jack.. Also, for best results you probably want to use 100 ohm (cat 5) cable, or 120 ohm DMX cable for the leads between the jacks and the card..

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Ponddude wrote:

So if I understand you correctly, you are saying there is a way to create a DMX Out on this card?

What if I were to apply a male XLR connector to the same connection, would that work?

I am using some Northlight DMX controllers. They come without connectors, but the instructions with the controllers do show what you are trying to do. Both connectors wired to the same terminals on the board.
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