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Okay, I just purchased an used American DJ Show Designer off of eBay to add to my collection of the two I already have from a while back to complete my third lighting rig. I noticed something weird about the controller when I bought it, it had some weird memory locked error. So, I unlocked the memory and wiped the memory in the controller and everything appeared to be working fine after that.

Then, I plugged it in last night to download the data from my other Show Designers via MIDI and noticed that after it was left on for about 5 minutes, the display and LEDs on the front began to slowly flicker. After doing that for a short period of time, it shut off all together. But, when I turn it off and back on it worked fine again for a while.

So, my question is, does anyone know what part could be causing this problem? Is it something I could fix (i.e. loose connection that needs to be re-soldered or something) or is it more major and should I just part out the controller? Also, if there is a part that could cause this, where are the parts located for this controller since I can't seem to find this model listed on the ADJ Parts website. Okay, well any help would be greatly appreciated!
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Thanks, I actually figured out the problem. As I am sure anyone with this controller knows, the power adapter tends to die and requires replacement. In fact, I don't think I've ever seen this model of controller being sold with the original power adapter, everyone has the generic Radio Shack adapters with their Show Designers. Anyway, I accidentally read the back of the Show Designer incorrectly and was using a 12V adapter rather than a 9V. The 12V worked fine for the last year on both of my other units, but this one must have been a little more sensitive to the power difference. Anyway, I purchased the 9V adapter (from Radio Shack of course) and that part of it works fine now.

Unfortunately I have a new problem now. It appears that the controller's XLR jack is missing the grounding tab causing the DMX to not be sent to the lights. So, now I'm going to need to find a new board-mound XLR connector that I can solder on, do you happen to know if the ADJ parts department carries that? Thanks!
With a broken XLR female connector, I'd be more worried about additional damage now.

A female missing the grounding pin? Come on. That's some serious damange. Even if it's Pin 1 or even grounding, that's not a good thing. Sounds to me like the unit has been abused.

Pin 1/shield is NOT necessary to transmit DMX data, but it does help shield the signal better from otuside RF inteference. I know, I've done this deliberately last week just to see, and while it worked, it wasn't quite as happy-happy as usual.

I think you have bigger problems than you realize, and it's possible that with the wrong power, you COULD have damaged something else by accident. Just because it appears to be working doesn't mean it is. I've seen FAILED hardware say "self diagnostic passes" when I see burned out components on the logic board.
Well, I don't doubt that there may be additional damage, however that doesn't mean that I should just scrap the unit and not try to repair it if possible. I knew the unit was not working when I purchased it, if I can get it working then great, if not then I'll use it for parts for my other two units. These boards, even with their age and condition, are still quite expensive when purchased used. I love the Show Designer and, as I said in another one of my posts, I have many, many hours invested in to programming my patterns, so I'd really like to stick with them for the time being.

You may be right about the XLR jack, there may more to the problem than is initially apparent. I may try to temporarily bridge the ground to see if that makes any difference before installing a new female adapter.
Well, when a chassis/PCB mounted female connector is broken, that's a definate sign of abuse.

What you've got to do is think business. Is it worth fixing or simply trying to find another?

Bridging ground on the XLR-type conenctor won't fix the other issues. It also doens't affect TX -/+(pins 2 and 3) because Pin 1 is a shield. Nobody should be using shell ground, it's flat out not safe. Shield is not necessary for the signal to flow. It's necessary to protect that signal as much as possible, especially over longer runs. Other than that, not essential for operations.

So, calculate what it costs to salvage it, versus getting running again. I'm all for repairing. Keep in mind these days that we're in a disposable society and culture. It's often cheaper to trash it and replace it than repair these days. This is too bad, I don't want electronics waste clogging up landfills. I'm not some greenie tree-hugger, but I don't like all the deliberate waste that goes about these days.

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