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need DMX to drive LEDs and driven by linux

Discussion in 'DMX, E1.31 & Networking' started by jbakshi, Sep 28, 2010.

  1. jbakshi

    jbakshi New Elf

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    Dear members,

    greetings to all of you, I have joined here as I also like to decorate my home and garden just like you :)

    I like to decorate by huge LEDs and found DMX is the way to solve this. But I am interested in those DMX which can communicate via USB and does not use CPU of computers for multiplexing. I have searched alot and also found a lots of solution and now I am confused :-\
    So I like to get some guidance from you, who are already using these technologies.

    In short I am searching for

    [1] an usb based DMX which does not use CPU for its operation
    [2] Some linux Softwares to design the effects, check it virtually and finally program the DMX accordingly
    [3] The DMX box should drive a large no. of RGB LED/strip directly
    [4] circuit of power unit
    [5] documentation on wiring
    etc....

    Please help me to start my project. As you I also like to decorate my home and garden... Please show me the way. Thanks
     
  2. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass!

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    Hi there. Glad to see you made it here from the PicList! :)

    I'm not sure what Linux software is available. I think most people use a Windows PC for Christmas lights.

    How many LEDs do you want to control?

    Are they arranged in groups of less than 512 each?
     
  3. Wombat

    Wombat Full Time Elf

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    Hi jbakshi,

    Firstly Welcome to Blinky flashy,

    have you investigated using the EtherConGateway boards that are on here? These use Ethernet to the ECG box which is converted to 4 or 8 DMX universes (also does Renard). This can then drive whatever DMX devices you have.

    As for Linux there is not much that I know of that will do blinky flashy. I run almost exclusively Linux at home and would like to see more of it as well. I usually have another machine that I dedicate with Windows and run the show from that box.

    As for running DMX to strings there is the TP-3212 boards available on here. also soon there will be a board to suit the ECG motherboard which will drive the pixel strings directly.

    have a look around youll find what you are are looking for

    Wombat
     
  4. mschell

    mschell Full Time Elf

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    I think there's lots of good info, or certainly a place to start with DMX on Linux.

    Check out http://opendmx.net

    It's a whole DMX environment that runs on OSX and Linux. I'm still trying to get a machine setup to play with it.

    But as several folks have already said - most folks use a Windows based control program now.
     
  5. dowdybrown

    dowdybrown New Elf

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    I've written xLights which will play any combination of LOR S2 and Vixen sequence files on any combination of DMX, Renard, D-Light, and LOR networks. And it runs on Windows, Linux, and OS/X 10.4 or later. An alpha version was released a couple of weeks ago. A beta should be ready by mid-October. For DMX, it supports Entec DMX Pro and compatible dongles (Lynx and DIYC). E1.31 support will be added next year.

    It is not a sequencer, but acts as a replacement for your show scheduler.

    Finally, it is open source, so anyone can contribute. It is licensed under GPL v3, written in C++ using the wxWidgets library.

    It is scriptable. I will be using it for my Halloween display this year, where it will control and respond to my interactive elements via an arduino board.

    http://sourceforge.net/projects/xlights/

    Matt
     
  6. fasteddy

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

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    A very nice option being contributed to the community, hope it all goes well and ill have to take a look at your handy work when it gets to beta. Thanks for the great effort.
     
  7. Wombat

    Wombat Full Time Elf

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    bummer that E1.31 isnt supported yet. That would be very good for what I want to do. I run linux for most of my computers. Maybe next year

    Keep up the good work

    Wombat
     
  8. mschell

    mschell Full Time Elf

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    OLA - from opendmx.net is also open source and can output E1.31 as well as traditional DMX outputs, using both commercial and DIY DMX dongles, from what I've heard....

    Xlights sounds good as well.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    jbakshi

    jbakshi New Elf

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    Hello,

    Thanks for your responses and thank to Wombat for the welcome note. To answer David Primarily I need 1000 LEDs ( including RGB and strips ) for garden. Strips for trees nad RGB for here and there and also to design some effects. If strips cause problem then all RGB. Latter it can increase upto 3K to decorate home also.

    Right now I like to finallize the DMX H/W and power unit. Then the S/W. I have no problem to run M$ s/w as I have XP under virtualbox but finally the system should come into linux box. The DMX needs to be based on USB so that I can control the sequence throgh laptop. A standalond DMX is great, as it does not utilize the CPU and the laptop is required to design and progarm the DMX unit.

    Hope xligts become very promising

    Thanks
     
  10. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass!

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    When you say "standalone DMX", are you wanting a piece of hardware to drive the lights without a PC connected?

    It seems like you're proposing a system where the PC is connected to program the sequences, then the hardware runs the show by itself?
     
  11. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Dedicated Elf Administrator

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    I've been reading "standalone" to mean the "PRO" type dongles were the dmx processing is off-loaded to the Dongle rather than being handled by the PC processor like the EnTTec Open and all it's clones.

    Cheers
    Phil
     
  12. usLEDsupply

    usLEDsupply New Elf

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    you may look into the SunLite DMX controllers http://www.nicolaudie.com/ i have used them and while they are a bit expensive they come with some pretty nice free software and some have real time clocks built in to trigger things, you can run the show of the computer or the device with a power supply so it doesn't need the computer to be on,
    they are made more for theater type shows but you can download the software for free and try it out
    sometimes you can get even get them off ebay for a lot cheaper (that is how i got my 1st one)
     
  13. OP
    OP
    jbakshi

    jbakshi New Elf

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    Yes David and all,

    I am interested in a system where PC is require to burn the sequence into the H/W and then it will be that H/W which drive the LEDs. If it is too expensive then I have to rely on PC driven system, but those which does not provide too much load on the CPU. Please suggest me both type of device.
     

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