Dimmer packs do NOT need a profile.

Do you have dimmer packs? Some of you do. You keep complaining that "gee, there is no profile for my dimmer pack". And time and time again, the answers are the same.

Let me set some things straight to sort out the confusion.

First, it is acknowledged that dimmer packs, switching packs and power packs(here-after all inclusively called dimmer packs) are all DMX devices. That is undeniable.
Second, on their own, the dimmer packs are not a fixture. By fixture, I am refering to a piece of electronics that is designed to produce light for the purpose of illumination, not "on unit displays". Also, some motors have DMX functionality but that's a different yet related issue.

MyDMX doesn't have profiles for dimmer packs for a very simple reason. It's not necessary. Why? Because the dimmer pack itself is an intermediary device to get something else to work.

Case and point. Let's say I have a dimmer pack. This dimmer pack, just for the sake of argument is an ADJ DP-DMX20L, a fairly common dimmer pack capable of using 4 DMX channels. So, a profile should be made for the dimmer? No, it shouldn't. And here is why:

Let's assume I have 4 Par64 lights on the dimmer pack, 1 per channel. I can, via a DMX controller, such as MyDMX, control the intensity of those 4 Par64 lights via sending control instructions to the dimmer pack.

Giving a profile to the dimmer pack itself is useless. What is more critical is assinging a profile for the devices hanging off the dimmer pack, which in this care are Par64 lights. Simply select 4 Par64 profiles, each assigned to the appropriate channel and you are good to go.

But what if you're not using something like a Par Can? Then chances are you are using a "Hi-Tech FX" type fixture. In which case, MyDMX doesn't really have a profile for those either, so the advise for that is to select a generic so you can tell in the 3D Visualizer that it is turned on, which is about the only amount of control you're gonna have anyways.

Honestly, MyDMX doesn't care what you have assinged to a channel. These profiles are for your benefit anyways. It's not like if you swap out the Par64s for Par38's and don't tell MyDMX that it's honestly going to make a difference to MyDXM, because MyDMX doesn't care, nor is it its job to care.

So, think one step outside the box. Dimmer packs control or operate fixtures, so therefore assign the profile to the channel(s) used by the dimmer pack appropriate for what is hanging off the dimmer pack, but not the dimmer pack itself. When you think this way, it makes perfect sense. Think about what you're doing, not necessarily how you get the work done(as in through/via a dimmer pack).

It is a slightly abstract concept, but simple to resolve.

I hope this clears up some confusion.

Now, get back to programming your shows. MyDMX rules!
Original Post
chris good post. Thanks. the reason it say edited by me was i featured it as a sticky topic. So it will always be on the top. Let me add though that if some one Does in fact want a Profile written for their pack i do not mind making one for you but as far as 3D goes you will not be able to properly represent your pars as 4 units if i do so that way. Make sense? And yes MY DMX Does Rule!!
Sincerely,
You can use dimmer/switch packs if you want to be able to control power to the lights remotely. Many dimmer packs also allow you to turn them into switch packs, wherein the pack won't dim the lights based on DMX value, but turn them on above 127, and off below that.

So, when do you need them? For example, in a club with your lights permanently installed on the ceiling, you want to be able to remotely control power to them. Sure, you could put them all on a breaker, but it's much better to have complete 100% control over power to each light from the lighting station.

On the contrary, for a wedding as another example, a dimmer/switch pack would be a bit overkill, unless you're using incandescent par cans and you want them to flash or be "dimmable". The bottom line is, you don't NEED a dimmer pack for certain situations at all but in others it is quite advisable. It's about convenience, really.

To summarize:
- Anytime you're dealing with incandescent par cans or any fixture that is "on or off" only, you probably need one. Unless, of course, you want those lights to remain on until you physically unplug it or otherwise somehow cut power to it.

- If you want to be able to remotely control power to individual lights, you need one, and if any of the lights plugged into it have circuitry/computer/etc, it then needs to be set to operate as a switch pack and not a dimmer pack.

- If you don't care and you want them to be powered on at all times, you don't need one at all.

In my club which is relatively small, I use several 4-channel switch packs just to control power to the lighting system. The Elation (DP-415 I think) switch packs we use can be dimmer packs as well, but I used the dip switches to make them switch packs only so that I don't damage lights by under-voltage. You don't want ever to "dim" a light that has any form of circuitry sensitive to voltage. For fixtures with any kind of circuitry, you want them to be on or off only.

Hope this helps.
Hi I am using 8 colorsplash jr's, 1 scantron 250, 2 revo 1's, 1 revo 3 and I have 4 quickscans. I am TRYING to run it with MYDMX. I had it set up with lights 1-8 the colorsplash jrs, light 1= channels 1-4, light 2= channels 5-8, light 3= channels 9-12, light 4=channels 13-16, light5= channels17-20, light6= channels 21-24, light 7= channels 25-28, light 8= channels29-32 at first lights 1-4 worked fine then when I got to light 5 the dimmer would not work which is channel 17, instead channel 18 was the dimmer and the colors did not match up (I think that the color changing channels are off by one also). Light 6 channels 21-24 work fine but light 7 and 8 are off by one channel also. I went through and checked everything with my charts again and now light 1 is off by one channel. my colorsplash jr's would not come on unless I had personality 10 which is also "option" on and then the corresponding channel personalities (dipswitches) in the on position. Now light number 9 the scantron 250 is behind one channel also. please help if you can make heads or tales of my dilemma, I have a huge wedding in 2 weeks and I AM FREAKING OUT. Thanks to you all
I Believe the colorsplashes are 5 channels. I had thought there was a redone profile for them. Try allowing 5 channels for the juniors and re do the addressing to follow suit and see if that clears up your issue. I would check into this more but I am out of town. In fact typing this post up from my iPhone while I'm on the highway. Haha.
Sincerely,
Jingles,
I ended up using dip switch 10 as #1 and everything worked out fine, ie if it said 1 and 5 dipswitches on, then I used 10 and 5. I am now in the process of trying to design the shows and I think it's going to work out but we will see. Thank you for your quick response I am very greatful.
I have to say i dissagree. Dimmerpacks, or a similar model is highly necessary. I am running 4 zero 88 dimmers (which are 6 channels, and 12 sockets (2 per channel)) and you cannot (without massive difficulty) add 2 fixtures to the same channel. Like wise if i wanted to address 4 LED cans to the same address (to speed things up), I can't do this either. Now i know there is a way of doing this on the patch screen in the 3DV, but it doesn't relate to the set-up screen and becomes untidy and confusing. So please give us some way of adding Fixtures to the same channel.
Other than that a great product for great money.
So if you copy the 3D object it doesn't save to the 3D file? also in my dmx wither you load up 12 par 64 profiles or one profile with 12 dimmer channels you will have the faders in the same spot doing the same functionality. That's my look on it. but hey to each their own. If someone wants one i will make it for them.
Sincerely,
In response to the first part of your post, no. eg 2 normal par cans. On the setup screen, 1 channel, one fixture, that's your lot. However in the 3d patch screen you can then put 2 fixtures on top of each other, 2 per channel, like a dimmer. This in-turn causes a whole load of problems; should you restart the show at a later date, want to add fixtures or even ammend another show as the 'Get patch' option goes across the board, not just that file. The biggest pain though is that if you had 2 led pars this time and they are both adressed to 1, you have only two options; 1. Chew up channels unecessaryly as my dmx will wants them side by side and channel info displayed over and over again, or 2.only have 1 fixture on the 3d. I know I have strayed away from the dimmer issue, but it's really the same. The bottom line of my point is that I would like to be able to put 2+ fixtures on to 1 channel on the setup screen and for that to then show and behave on the 3d, ie the dimmer model I first refured to.

Thanks for your responce.
Always interested in how it can be done aswell as how it is done.
Thanks for getting back so quick.
I agree with you. You take away a lot of options when you overlap and try to aviod it when possible. But I work in a school and I don't always get the information in time to do what I would like so re-addressing all lights to 1 is the fastest way to get the job done on time.

Thanks for all the hard work
Well, do this: Set up your universe, and then leave things alone instead of "re-inventing the wheel" every show. Documentation is KEY and critical, even if you have to augment with label tape and a Sharpie, which is almost aways a good idea. Another is a printed charge in a plastic sheet protector, letting anyone know what is what.

You can MOVE fixtures in myDMX. In the Universe set-up, you can drag fixtures around. The programming will follow to the new channel(s). I have tested this multiple times and trusted my BIG show to this, so I can stand behind it and say "this works".

MyDMX does not want "non-like" fixtures to share the same channel. As you can see, this isn't a good idea. It CAN be done. I have a hard time doubling up on Par38's, since I put 2 Par38's per dimmer channel. I am skipping some small step.

Since dimmers DO NOT illuminate, there's still no valid reason to put dimmers in MyDMX. You want to add the fixtures hanging off the dimmers.
I am setting up my first MyDMX project and have a question regarding dimmer pack assignment. I did do a search, but did not find anything specific to my question.

Anyway...

I am running 4 movers and 16 par cans. The par cans are split up among 4-4 channel Dimmer packs. They are Elation DP_DMX4B's.

My question is, when placing the par's on the MyDMX grid, I am given a new DMX address for each light. But the dimmer, looks like it uses one address for all 4 lights. What am I missing?

I am a sound guy and very new to lighting - still trying to get my head around all of this DMX stuff.

Thanks in advance.

-Brad
HAHA, Simple math. say the dimmer pack is on dmx address 10. And you put 4 par 56 profiles in there one is at 10, one is at 11, one is at 12, and lastly 13. if you were to use a dimmer pack profile and not par can profiles you would see that it will occupy this same space. So if you start the dimmer pack at 10 and it uses 4 channels, it is using channels 10, 11, 12, 13. Make sense?
Welcome to the forums. I hope this helps. If not let me know.
Sincerely,
Thanks Jim. Actually I came to this forum to try and find a profile for my dimmer pack, but based on the OP in this thread, I got the impression that they were not available/needed.

Also, I do apologize for my lack of understanding, but I am still a little foggy on your explanation.

Are you saying that I can drag multiple par can fixtures to the same location on the MyDMX layout grid? Because when I simply drag 4 fixtures into their own location, I think MyDMX sees them as separate fixtures with unique DMX addresses.

Thanks again for your quick reply.

-Brad


quote:
Originally posted by Jingles:
...if you were to use a dimmer pack profile and not par can profiles you would see that it will occupy this same space. So if you start the dimmer pack at 10 and it uses 4 channels, it is using channels 10, 11, 12, 13. Make sense?
Welcome to the forums. I hope this helps. If not let me know.
Sincerely,

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