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My build thread (or my crash and burn thread we'll see come Dec..)

Discussion in 'How is my display put together...' started by schoey, Aug 19, 2014.

  1. schoey

    schoey New Elf

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    Hi all, I thought I'd document my set up from start to finish in the hope that it may end up a good resource for the next noob to stumble upon this great site.

    I'll be making it up as I go along but I'll come back and edit this post to try to keep everything accessible. I know this is quite a big thing to attack this late, but if nothing else it will be great ground work for next year :D

    What I've got to work with:

    Bugger all viewable front yard, all of my display will have to be on the fence/house, after a few tweaks this is what I'm thinking, all RGB strip outlines plus a few floods and some RGB stars, the singing faces will be very much on the back burner until I can get the rest going.

    [​IMG]


    Ordered:

    LIGHTS (Ray Wu order - STORE LINK )
    - 100m x RBG Strip
    - 15 x RBG Stars
    - 4 x RGB Floods, How much light do they throw, do I need more or less?
    - 2 x lot of these connectors, I assume they are the way to go?
    - 1 x lot of these end caps, I'd end up with a lot left over but they'd make things a bit easier I'd assume??
    - 4 x Power supplies
    - 2 x of these pixel controllers for testing.

    FM Transmitter
    - 1 x EDM-LCD-CS-EP

    Decoration
    - 1 x Garage door decor, I went for the reindeer barn without Santa

    CONTROLLERS
    - PixLite16, bought and arrived

    SEQUENCING
    - Vixen3, was very close to biting the bullet and going LSP but thought I'd save the $$ for now, will definitely re-visit next year.

    Shopping list:
    -
    Nothing right now, I'll see what I'm short on once I get in to it

    This will go to Ray later today once I've ironed out a couple of details, after that it's on to cabling (I didn't think I'd add this to the Ray order as it would add quite a bit of weight?), controllers (the big decision) and software (another big one really).

    PLEASE feel free to add anything, pick it apart, tell me I'm doing it wrong, happy to learn something new ;)

    Update 20/8, Ray Wu and Garage door decor order done and just ordered an FM transmitter. Shopping list and picture updated :D Controller and sequencing decided on. Now for the hard work :-[
     
  2. kane

    kane Dedicated Elf

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    Looks good - most of it being pixel based will give you lots of control.

    In terms of controllers, you will need a number of pixel controllers, so depending on how far away each controller will be from your lights, you'll be able to determine how many you need, and of what type. Obviously the different models out that have different capabilities in terms of number of outputs and number of pixels per output.

    Those waterproof connectors are the best way of doing things - although it may not be necessary these days, we always recommend getting a lot more than you need, as Ray has switched suppliers in the past, causing issues with incompatibility.. (certainly has caused me grief)

    The RGB floods are good - brightness depends on what you are shining them on to, as well as ambient light (eg from your other lights!).. I have 12 of them shooting on to my next door neighbour's house (plus a couple 30w ones).. Best bet is to get a few and test them out. As these use DMX, you'll need something that talks DMX - easiest option would be to ensure you get a pixel controller that has a DMX output - most of the vendors now have this as an option..

    Power supplies - if the supplies are going to be inside, then you may as well stick with the normal ones for the price. I have 3 of the waterproof ones on my balcony as that does get a bit of weather (even though it's pretty protected). But the rest of my power supplies are in my garage, so they're just the normal cheaper ones.

    Ps - you forgot to draw a line along the incoming power supply from the street. :)
     
  3. mborg10

    mborg10 Michael Borg

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    I have a couple waterproof power supplies and a couple of non. The waterproof ones are heavier and cost more to ship. They also get hotter with no mechanical cooling. You have to put your controllers in something weatherproof so I'd put my power supplies in there too and just get the normal ones.

    Get way more connectors than what you need. You use more than you expect, are really handy and can always be used next year.

    Don't get cable from ray, it is not thick enough. Just get a roll of 4 core security cable.

    As for software. Personal choice but for me it's lightshowpro all the way.
     
  4. gerry

    gerry Senior Elf

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    Hi,

    This is my first year , but this is what I can add to Kane's feedback.
    [Focussing on what you plan to build]
    - I have the same 2811 12 V strip. When ordering I asked Ray to cut some of the 5m rolls into approx lenghts (eg 2 of 2.5 metres, 5 of 1 metres etc) and to solder the connectors to them before shipping. (Cause I could not solder)
    - I also bought 100 of the connectors (male and female pairs) from Ray.
    - The end caps (20) were round (not the flat ones you had a link to).
    - I also bought 20 or so three way white T connectors for power injection. Make sure they match ie are same size.
    - 12V/ 350W power supplies from Ray (max 300 W ie 80 %) - with 50 % more PSUs than you estimate are required. Also for the requirements , it is good to have one nearer each set of elements if they are not close together.
    -Water proof boxes (Masters here have some for $11 each)
    - Controllers:
    - I have ECG-P2s for the strips. Also have a Pixlite 16 - which in addition to lots of 2811 capability also has 4 ports for DMX. The new Pixlite 4 is a smaller version of the Pixlite16 and has one DMX output port, so you could get one or two of those instead (and distribute them).
    - I also have on order a 'Ray Wu 27ch DMX controller'. So will connect one DMX output of the Pixlite16 to the the 27ch controller and then onto dumb RGB or BigW lights (if I have time). The BigW lights need approx 27+ V so different PSUs requiured for them - did not see what V your floods were.
    - 4/20 (ie 4 core cable). They come in 100m or 300m rolls. I ordered the 100m one.
    - Fuse boxes and fuses (for all the +12V connections) . I used the ones which have 6 blade fuses
    - there are other MISC items that meant numerous trips to Jaycar during my lunch breaks

    And am using LightShowPro. However, if you have not used any / do not have - then would suggest that you look seriously at Vixen instead given that we are in Aug already.

    My current order has been with Ray for just under three weeks so far (but Ray promises it will ship any day now). Looks like he is busier than usual as previously the turn around was much quicker.

    Let me know if you want links to any of the above- I can go back and look at my old orders.

    regards
     
  5. mborg10

    mborg10 Michael Borg

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    It's starting to get that time of year when Ray gets super busy and sometimes take up to 6 weeks for orders to come thru especially if ordering custom stuff.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    schoey

    schoey New Elf

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    No custom lengths for me, I enjoy the build too much

    PS thanks for all the tips so far, I'll be back later for a better read... Keep em coming :D
     
  7. BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Dedicated Elf

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    I'll vouch for getting heaps of pigtails/connectors. Like you I got 50 pair plus another 16 female pigtails for my controller. They just seem to disappear/get used. Wish I had ordered at least another 25 pair now.

    You will likely set up your controller/s with all female or all male connectors so make sure you order some extra of which ever one you plan on using for you controllers.

    Also like you I ordered 4 pin pigtails thinking that if I used a strip with 4 wires in the future it would all be compatible. When my strips turned up Ray had put 3 pin pigtails on them. The 3 pin pigtails were surplus to the 4 pin pigtails I had ordered but of course they are not compatible. Not sure if the strip normally comes with pigtails on it but 2811 is only 3 wire so you could get away with 3 pin pigtails.

    The only other thing I ordered (from Ray) that's not on your list is end caps to put on the pigtails at the end of strips. This way all strips can be put anywhere and the dead ends can be water protected.

    Ray lets you order less than the minimum size lot listed on the website too and still sells it for the per item price. Well he did for me anyway.
     
  8. OP
    OP
    schoey

    schoey New Elf

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  9. AAH

    AAH I love blinky lights :) Community Project Designer

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  10. BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Dedicated Elf

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    Yes, I would get both. I only got 20 of the hard plastic ones and 200 of the silicon ones but I only have 45m of strip lights.
     
  11. arw01

    arw01 Full Time Elf

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    + 1 on extra connectors. I did not look at all the links, but did you have the right size silicon end caps for the strips too? I lost a couple bags of those, I will order more next time.

    + 1 on LSP, +, you will get the new version next year.
     
  12. OP
    OP
    schoey

    schoey New Elf

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    Thanks again for all the help guys, I have ordered a 'garage door decor' and have the order moving along with Ray Wu, definitely worth emailing him rather than buying straight off 'my cart' in Aliexpress, postage price has dropped by ~$100. I have updated my first post a bit.
     
  13. BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Dedicated Elf

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    Good news Schoey. Bad news is, somebody stole your trampoline!
     
  14. OP
    OP
    schoey

    schoey New Elf

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    Hahah, yeah I think he goes by the name of 'the bad photoshop bandit' notorious around these parts :D
     
  15. talk2coxie

    talk2coxie Full Time Elf

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    Hi Schoey, how much was shipping for the garage door d├ęcor? My neighbour is interested in getting one.
     

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