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ok holy hell... i am a complete newbie to lighting...

this is what i want to do.. can someone please tell me if it's possible at entry level prices...

i'm in a rock band, i want to set up lighting for our stage:
floor lights on each band member (3 front of stage, 1 for the drummer)
blue police beacons on top of the amps
lights for the side of the stage that will pan from floor to ceiling
other standard lights at the back of the stage
maybe one FX light (water effect) for back curtain

i want to automate EVERYTHING on a laptop using controller software, which i can sink up to my audio software which plays my backing tracks for the show.

i've just begun my research but i barely understand what dmx is all about, and the difference between an interface, controller, which ones work with eachother, which ones dont, etc...

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Eeker WOW! umm ok. so do have any of this lighting gear yet? actually to do what you want may be a lil expensive in price. ur gon need all the lighting truss cables a computer controller software that will synch your programming to your audio tracks,(which isn't cheap) and the knowledge to set it up and program it all. what do u need as of right now? i can explain DMX in detail if u want? im the lighting guru here. let me know and i wil do my best to help you and get you what u want if it can be done. peace! jingles. p.s. welcome to the forums.
i didn't buy anything yet... i'm figuring a basic budget of about $2000. i downloaded ShowXpress software and i think i'd be able to manage it alright. if i couldn't internally sink it to run with the same timecode as my audio program, i could run a regular macro to start both at the same time. i see that chauvet has dmx interfaces for as low as 300 bucks, i just wanna be sure thats all you need to get started.

thanks for the help by the way. Smiler
ok well if ur gonna need asistance with buying lights i can help you but if you buy other than adj/elation i can't help you as this is a American DJ forum. it seems like you need about 8-12 lights for this + trussing and cables and 2K isn't so bad but i think your gonna need more. did u need me to recommend any fixtures? like do you want scanners or moving heads? do u want dimming capabilities? do you want rotating gobos or even a prism? for your front lights i def recommend the P64 LED from adj. 4 should prob work.let me know how you plan to program these i.e. what type of music, what kind of looks or sequences you will try to program? peace! jingles.
this is a American DJ forum.

oops! sorry, yea only adj stuff ;-)

i def want dimming capabilities, would like to have a couple moving spots if possible, color changing for setting the right mood, a water effect for a certain song, strobes on and off and synched to certain parts of songs.. obviously i want to be able to blackout everything.

i figured id find ways to mount everything off the floor because setting up a big rig would take way too much time.
well for all that new, not used be prepared to spend over 2K for sure. also have you thought about your power limitation? cause strobes are a good 7-800 watts just them. and you can really only hold about 6-8 250 watt fixtures on a single 15 amp circuit. and decent sized rigs with the right trussing can be a snap to set up. also if u want dimming ur gonna need anything from the accu series. for color changers i would go with leds. s u can create millions of hues effortlessly. idk about the chauvet controller and what al it would let you synch up too so im not sure about that but i do know certain version of compuware will let you do it however they are a bit pricey. if there is anything i missd let me know or if u have anymore question hit me up! peace! jingles.
ok so i've done massive research on fixtures and your suggestions have helped a lot... now i'm mainly concerned with a software dmx controller... what do you suggest? i tooled with the showxpress software but it seems extremely inaccurate... does american dj have software? i need something that syncs to a metronome NOT mins/secs.

also, can non-dmx fixtures be controlled just for on/off with a dmx controller/software?
metronome huh? hmm i'll have to check about that one. also umm american dj does not but their sister company elation does have a computerized controller software i have one of em and i love it. go to the elation site and look under products and then computerized lighting control. now they are a bit pricey but worth it. about your last question you will need dimmer/relay packs for your non dmx fixtures to be able to turn them off and on via dmx. like i said what you want to do is expensive!! you are gonna need a lot of stuff and if not a lot of stuff then some nice gear at a higer price. but the more you spend the more you will be able to do and the better a light show your band will have the more gigs you will get, so consider this a investment in your band sucess! peace! jingles.
thanks for all your help jingles... i spent most of today getting my feet wet in compu 2004 or... 2006.. or .. i dont know what i downloaded off the elation site.. anyway, some of the features for triggering scenes have a warning that says "only available in first class". what does that mean?
well certain features work with certain packages and dongles of the software here is a guide.

i was looking around the site today and some gear that u mentioned is/should be within your budget but if your gonna buy compuware then plan on going over budget but it will be worth it! if u need any compuware help i can help you out with that too as i own a dongle (see orange dongle on chart) and i won 3rd in a national lighting design contest a lil while ago from elation and won the version of compuware i have now. any more questions please ask. peace! jingles!
cool... so trigger by midi is available on every dongle... i hear the compu club is discontinued so i'd have to go with the next in line...

so let me know if this is possible:

-running compulive with all my scenes set up to be triggered by certain midi notes
-running nuendo or cubase which plays my audio tracks for my show
-having a midi track run along side the audio tracks in nuendo which gives cues to compulive to trigger certain scenes (by which midi note it plays)

?? doable?
hey nick here is the answer straight from mr jon lopez over at elation lighting.
To answer the customer’s question, is yes, it should work.
If the customer had 2 computers.. 1 running Compu Live and the other running nuendo or Cue base, then yes, it will work, because 1 machine is sending MIDI to the other.

You are working with 2 separate hardware units.

Now if the customer wants to run nuendo and have compu live running in the background, then this is what can’t be guaranteed.
You are running 2 software programs and 2 different drivers too communicated from 1 software and hardware to the other.
As you can see this can get tricky, and should work, but it’s not guaranteed, I don’t know if Compu Live drivers and Cuebase or Nuendo drivers are compatible.
so there you are. really hope this helps you and we can move on to finding you lights and getting you to learn compuware. peace! sincerely jingles.
ciao jing, long time no speak.

I got my compu 1024 interface and downloaded the latest version of compu ware (12-21-07). I installed all the drivers and everything seems cool. I borrowed a chauvet colorstrip from a friend to see if i can get my stuff working.

The first thing i noticed is that while my compu live software is running, the "dmx" red light on the interface is flickering nonstop. When I plug the interface into the colorstrip, the signal light on the back of the unit does the same thing. is this normal or is something screwed up??
so far the only two lights ive gotten my hands on are both chauvet (colorstrip and a minwash) ..they don't seem to be agreeing so well with the interface. there are no presets for pages in compu live for these fixtures and i cant find presets online either. using the manuals as a guide i tried setting up my own pages but still cant get the buggers to even flicker.. i know this is american dj so obviously im not asking to troubleshoot chauvet lighting, but is there some basic thing im missing?? i've set the dmx channel to 001 on the fixture, and made sure it is the same on the page (starting at 1 ending at 5 for example). i actually found a .ssl file on the internet for the colorstrip to run in 1 particular mode which worked for a second, but when i got out of the program and got back in it no longer worked, which i think is a little fishy. the dmx cable i'm using is american dj high performance series, and once again i'm using the 1024 interface / 12-21-2007 compuware. after playing with the software before i had the interface, i found that programming scenes and such was difficult but very do-able... i knew the hardest part would be getting the lights to respond hehe ..well here i am...
my direct number which is NOT the toll free number is 1-323-213-4590. but the toll free number is on the elation forums and web site. well my hours vary from week to week cause i work for elation from home in WI and then i have another job too. i am avail today till 3:30pm CT time aswell as tomm. but wed and thursday i am avail ALL day! lol im still lookin into your problem. peace!

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