1. New to Christmas lighting? Get started with the AusChristmasLighting 101 Manual:
    auschristmaslighting.com/wiki/AusChristmasLighting-101

Backlit Standalone Tune-To Sign Idea

Discussion in 'The Development Lab' started by ryanschristmaslights, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. ryanschristmaslights

    ryanschristmaslights Senior Elf Administrator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2010
    Messages:
    567
    Likes Received:
    81
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    Find Me On:
    I've been thinking, there is pretty well a large need for some sort of sign with radio frequency so that passing vehicles can see more than "a bunch of random flashing lights". Some of you have posted pictures of construction of mountable and often display-integrated signs that are sequenced with the rest of the display.

    There must be others in the community that would like a back-lit tune to sign, but don't necessarily want to mount it on a wall or sequence it as a display element. This is where I got thinking about a "Standalone" Tune to sign. that could be installed and removed each night. This would enable it to be positioned near a road (but would need to be watched or chained down or something).

    My own personal requirements are that I want it close to the road so that cars will see as they approach and there cannot be cables running to there, so whatever it is should be "wireless" and run a colour-cycling (demo) mode. It also needs to be portable as I would set it up, turn on, turn off and take it in every night.

    Some items that could make a standalone sign work could be:
    • A Ray Wu 3-channel DMX board (HD-714) - This enables control of the sign if one wishes but I am led to believe that it will cycle through colours (a what rate I am not sure) in "demo" mode if there is no power but no signal
    • A 12v battery to power the sign for a few hours a night (charged before/after nightly installation). Jaycar usually carry SLA-type batteries that could power a HD714 controller and 1 metre of RGB strip for 2-3 hours. A 7.2 Ah battery is priced at $30. SB2486
    • A charger for the above battery. Once more, David of Audio Visual Devices stocks these for $25 (MB3526)
    • 12v 5050 RGB Strip (no IC).
    Then the usual items for an integrated tune to sign (not standalone) apply such as enclosure, coro for front, lettering (e.g. vinyl), etc.
    With the Ray Wu 3 channel DMX board mentioned above, the option is there to later connect the sign to a DMX universe and control the colour of sign like any other RGB element (no longer a standalone RGB sign).






    So that's one way to do it with Dumb RGB strip. How about intelligent 12v strip? The J1sys DCG/ECG products also have a demo mode, achieving a standalone result but with intelligent-level effects. I am just unclear when the demo mode runs - is it when no data cable is connected/no signal received to the DCG/ECG or must it be set somewhere (such as onboard web interface - data cable required)? Or maybe there is another intelligent RGB device the has a demo mode? Perhaps someone can jump in with an answer to this!





    This is all just a pie in the sky idea at this time, but I do wonder if there could be enough interest by some who only want a standalone sign to have some kind of suitable enclosure made up with a blank coro front. Then the purchaser just assembles the bits into enclosure and writes a message (radio frequency) on the coro (e.g. with vinyl).

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Kaden

    Kaden Pixels! I need more pixels!

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2012
    Messages:
    724
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Gold Coast
    I am posting on my phone at the moment, but doesn't j1sys have an add-on for his boards that will run programmable sequence whenever powered?
     
  3. Kaden

    Kaden Pixels! I need more pixels!

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2012
    Messages:
    724
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Gold Coast
    Found it, it is the XCG-X2A and it is still under development so may be useful in the long run, but not this year :)

    http://auschristmaslighting.com/forums/index.php/topic,2423.msg21243.html#msg21243
     
  4. kane

    kane Dedicated Elf

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,022
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Trigg (Northern suburbs of Perth)
    Find Me On:
    Demo mode on the j1sys gear is generally via a jumper, although I think on the P2, it's via the web config (not sure if it is persistent after power cycles?). That being said, the demo mode (as currently stands) is probably more useful for just testing the output is working, rather than for real output, as the output wouldn't really make for interesting viewing.

    As Kaden mentioned, Ed is planning on selling an add-on board that allows you to playback preprogrammed sequences, but I believe this is still to be released.

    That being said, if you're trying to keep it cost effective, perhaps sticking with dumb RGB would be a better idea, and cycle between colours.
     
  5. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,501
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
  6. Kaden

    Kaden Pixels! I need more pixels!

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2012
    Messages:
    724
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Gold Coast
    Lol, of course! Ray sells the equivalent for digital strip too, like this http://m.aliexpress.com/item/573403895.html
     
  7. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass!

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2010
    Messages:
    3,540
    Likes Received:
    81
    Location:
    Victoria Point (Brisbane)
    Find Me On:
    Just a small clarification to Ryan's first post. We don't sell SLA batteries - I mentioned (in chat) that they were around that price range. Jaycar have a 7.2AH SLA battery for $29.95 as well as a various other types.

    We do have some of those SLA chargers in stock as they were left over from a project. I can offer these at a better price for ACL members.
     
  8. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,501
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
    I have used a 7.2 Ah battery for the last couple of years to light up the signage for the diversion and donation road block. I have used about 2.5 metres of 30LED/M strip with a high intensity red flashing light and it lasts for a couple of nights use before needing a recharge, has worked perfectly the last 2 years. So 1 metre of strip with white light for 2 to 3 hours a night will last a few nights worth of use before requiring a recharge.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    ryanschristmaslights

    ryanschristmaslights Senior Elf Administrator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2010
    Messages:
    567
    Likes Received:
    81
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    Find Me On:
    Whoops, misunderstood sorry! I've updated the original post.




    Have you got any photos of these signs? What are you using to operate them? Are you using RGB strip or something different that just has a red led?
     
  10. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,501
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
    Im just using RGB strip directly connected to the battery so it is white so it can illuminate the sign, no controller or anything fancy .

    I do plan to add some effects by using a couple of minleon controllers and strings this year under battery power
     
  11. kane

    kane Dedicated Elf

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,022
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Trigg (Northern suburbs of Perth)
    Find Me On:
    Be good to actually see what the Minleon stuff looks like - I'm guessing they're bigger over in the US, but the first I'd heard about them was when they bought LSP
     
  12. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,501
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
    I just have a couple of minleon controllers that can be driven by LSP, or pre programmed with your own effect for standalone use or use one of the 30+ inbuilt effects, I also was given a couple of sample strings, very good quality I must say.
     
  13. OP
    OP
    ryanschristmaslights

    ryanschristmaslights Senior Elf Administrator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2010
    Messages:
    567
    Likes Received:
    81
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    Find Me On:
    What sort of pricing are the Minleon controllers/strings that you intend on using in the standalone sign FE? They'd be somewhat like dumb RGB and the 3-channel Ray Wu controller, in as they can operate standalone but later you could sequence them, if circumstances changed, right?
     
  14. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,501
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
    These are 12vdc 120 channel pixel controllers designed to work with Minleon pixels and can be connected via USB to gain direct control if you wish, so they give the user a few options, PC controlled, user standalone control and pre programmed control via remote. So a very flexible controller that we hope to see more of in 2013. These only make up one part of a minleon network as there are effects controllers that can control 1000s of channels which I hope to see soon. hopefully early next year we will be able to provide more information on Minleon products. Sorry but no pricing as of yet.
     
  15. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass!

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2010
    Messages:
    3,540
    Likes Received:
    81
    Location:
    Victoria Point (Brisbane)
    Find Me On:
    Sounds like this is spiralling in complexity! :D Ryan's head will explode! :eek:
     

Share This Page