newbie to the forum and serious lights

Cootamike

New elf
Joined
Apr 27, 2014
Messages
16
Greetings, I'm from a small country town in NSW and I have always been in awe of some of the displays i have seen around the internet. I have run a fair amount of basic lights on my house in past years but they are starting to look a little second hand with dull colours and sections of strings not working so my wife has given me a budget to do some upgrades.

I run my own business that not only deals with computers but also theatrical production gear so I have a good handle on DMX controls, networking and lighting principals plus I can get some equipment at wholesale prices.

My budget for the first year is $500. After a bit of research I have come up with the plan to use Vixen for the software, an E682 controller from SAN Devices and about 30M of generic WS2811 based LED strips plus an FM transmitter. I'm not looking to use any of my existing lights except for a few dumb 240v rope lights which, if i have researched correctly, can be controlled by a bog standard DMX dimmer driven by one of the ouputs of the E682. Cables, power supplies and other assorted nick nacks can come out of my work stock.

I'll try to get a photo up later but the front of my house is pretty basic, there is a bullnose verandah about 10M long at the front that goes right around the house, the front of the house itself is about 7M long and there are extra bits off to each side that is set back about 5M, looking down on the house from above it is roughtly 'T' shaped.

I'm thinking of having 10M of the RGB strip along the top and bottom of the verandah, another strip cut to 4 1.2M lengths hung vertically at equal distances along the verandah and the remaining strip cut to 10 50cm lengths attached to rods scattered around my lawn as mini firesticks.

Any thoughts? It is a basic setup but its my first outing and it will be the only computerised system in town.
 

mborg10

Michael Borg
Joined
Dec 28, 2011
Messages
1,446
Location
claremont meadows
firstly welcome to ACL. If you can, try and make it to the Sydney mini. Sounds like you could teach us some things as well as pick up some stuff yourself. We are all trying to stretch every dollar and get best bang for our buck. Sounds like you have some good ideas. No matter what you put up everyone loves christmas lights and this is only the beginning.
 

Kaden

Pixels! I need more pixels!
Joined
Jan 10, 2012
Messages
724
Location
Gold Coast
Welcome to ACL!


Being familiar with DMX is going to help you getting started in this hobby, there is still alot to learn as you probably already know.


The best place to start is the AusChristmasLighting 101 Manual, give that a read and start asking us questions :)


You have lots of time to create an awesome show this Christmas!
 

fasteddy

I have C.L.A.P
Global moderator
Joined
Apr 26, 2010
Messages
6,645
Location
Albion Park NSW
Welcome to ACL, lots of great advice and assistance here.

I cant count the amount of times that someone has said they have X amount of budget to then be taken over by the CLAP and spend much more than their initial budget. Could this be you :D
 

BundyRoy

Dedicated elf
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
1,026
Welcome Mike. I'm only new to this too but have already received lots of help from the good people on here. It is like Eddy said, very easy to get hooked and blow the budget. The good news is (I'm hoping), the budget is forgotten when the lights go on.

So what sort of theatrical productions get put on at Coota.
 

Cootamike

New elf
Joined
Apr 27, 2014
Messages
16
Thanks everyone, I think I already have the CLAP. I do have the means to obtain lighting funds through other channels but the official WAF budget is $500. I was pointed in the direction of the P2 controller last night in the chat room which would probably fit my needs a bit better than the E682 and is cheaper.

BundyRoy said:
So what sort of theatrical productions get put on at Coota.
For a small town we have a pretty big performing arts community, we have our own arts centre with a dedicated theatre and exhibition space. Plenty of dance schools and dramatic arts groups plus a horde of musical people.
 
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