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Starting all over

Discussion in 'xLights (Nutcracker)' started by mike williamson, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    What I had is a 32x30 string tree running off a f16v2 each output 1-15 runs 2x32 strings (up and down) the other is just 5x50 arches run from 5 outputs.My last year I could get the arches to work but the tree would only run about 5 outputs 13,14,15 .so this year I have deleted all the setup in xlights and tried to start again. I am NOT a computer wiz at all and things like numbers ( channels , universes And how many of each node go into each) start to confuse the hell out of me.Now what I want to do is pretty much max out all ports in setup so I can fill as much into each port as possible. I am adding heeps to my house this year ( if I can get it setup) once I click and know what I,m doing I will be fine but until then I am just stumped.I,v read watched and googled so much it has confused me even more but every now and then another bit clicks and works . 1st question is in xlights The f16v2 can run 680 pixels from each output and there is 16 outputs Why is mine setup to 32 outputs and only 510 channels? )Set up from a helper my last year) That has got me to start with.2nd) what is the numbers. eg, 3 channels =1 node 680 nodes = 1 output ext. how many in universe and so on? so I can right it down for ref later. 3rd) if I add single strings to the roof outline of house view does it matter if I go left to right or right to left. I also have strings that can not be seen in view that go toward the back of the house how will that work?But for now If I can get the basics set I can work on other stuff later. I hope this helps
     
  2. keithsw1111

    keithsw1111 Full Time Elf

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    Best if you join us in the friday night zoom session and we can get you all sorted.
     
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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    I will try but back to work lunchtime today. (work is telfer. Google it. Middle of W.A)
     
  4. OzAz

    OzAz Full Time Elf Generous Elf

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    Disclaimer: I'm far from being an expert. Watched lots of videos, asked lots of (dumb) questions, some information has "clicked" for me too.

    Pixels, universes, channels is one of the things that confused me (still does sometimes). I found this picture on the holidaycoro site, one of the better ones that explains it (to me at least) and often a picture says a thousand words. Note: this is for their version of a 4 channel controller, but you can extrapolate it out to 16 Channels.

    AlphaPix4-Logical-DMX-Channel-Diagram.gif

    1 Pixel = 3 Channels
    512 Channels = 1 Universe (this is I believe, some sort of industry (DMX) standard)
    Therefore: maximum number of pixels per universe is 512/3 = 170.666666
    We cant have .666 of a pixel, So; to round out maximum number of pixels per universe if we say 1 universe = 510 channels then we get 510/3 = 170 exactly. This is why 510 is often used as the maximum number per universe.

    Note: you can set up to use 512 as maximum, the program/controller will then use the first channel of the next universe to control the last colour of the last pixel 513/3=171 The picture above may help you understand that, though not all controllers or programs can handle this.

    Now to get maximum number of pixels per controller output, we have to use multiple universes. So for 680 pixels (eg. falcon f16v2):
    680 x 3 = 2040 (channels)
    2040 / 510 (our max universe number) = 4
    So one controller output uses 4 Universes (see pic)
    16 outputs at 4 universes each = 64 universes

    still with me? :confused:

    As to why previous person set up as 32 outputs, I'm not sure why, it doesn't sound correct to me (see previous disclaimer).

    So how do we use this knowledge to set up our universes in the Setup tab of xLights?

    Firstly, we need to determine number of physical pixels we are using in relation to number of their associated props.
    Starting with your tree:
    32 x 30 (I'm assuming 30 strings of 32 pixels after further reading your post) - normally written as strings x pixels so I'll change that to 30 x 32
    30 x 32 or 15 x 64 (I'm assuming 2 strings of 32 pixels physically connected)
    64 pixels = 192 Channels (so less than 1 universe per dual string of pixels)
    Total number of channels is: 15 x 64 x 3 = 2880

    Now here's where things start to get tricky. If you ask 3 different people you'll get 3 different answers. There's no right or wrong just better and/or more economical and/or more "future proof".

    Version 1:
    You set up 15 "outputs", numbered Universes 1 - 15 with Number of Channels = 192 on each "output" in the Setup tab
    _v1.PNG
    etc down to output 15

    This isn't overly economical as you have up to 2040 channels available on each output of the controller, but you may get away without using Power Injection (PI), so:

    Version 2:
    You work out how many strings can fit on each output
    2040/192 = 10.625 (but lets round that down) = 10; and we have 15
    so 192 x 10 = 1920
    1920 / 510 = 3.765 Universes (round up = 4) - our max remember
    192 x 5 = 960
    960 / 510 = 1.88 (round up = 2)
    So theoretically you could set it up like this:
    1 "output", with 4 Universes (1-4) with number of channels = 510 (that is 510 on each universe so 510 x 4 = 2040)
    2nd "output" with 2 Universes with number of channels = 510

    _v2.PNG

    This version only uses 2 physical outputs of the controller, much more economical. Note: in this version you'll definitely have to use PI on all your strings.

    Note: you could set the number of channels on outputs 1 and 2 to 480
    as 1920 / 4 = 480 and 960 / 2 =480

    Version 3, 4 etc etc

    Then do same for arches and whatever else...


    (yet another disclaimer: my arithmetic may not be 100%, was writing this whilst also working. If any mathematical errors are found please notify me politely and I'll amend accordingly.
    (and another one: If there are other ways of doing this, and I'm sure there are, be polite and explain your version, clearly. Please don't shoot me down in flames, I'm only trying to help.)

    perhaps this should be a wiki, or maybe there already is one?




    free mintie to anyone who's read this far down - to be collected in-person only. :D
     
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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    this is fantastic. Thanks . Starting to make sense now .
     
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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    Does this look correct?
     
  8. ezellner

    ezellner New Elf

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    The last section doesn't look right to me. Where you have channel count as 680, port 2 start channel should be 2041 not 1021. Port 3 should start at channel 4081, etc.If you see the end channel on the first line, add one to that to get the start channel of the next port. If you don't change this, you will get odd results because the same pixels will be getting multiple instructions. I'm just a rookie at this so I could be wrong.
     
  9. Doctor_007

    Doctor_007 Apprentice Elf

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    Hi Mike,

    In the later version of xlights you can upload your configuration straight to the falcon controllers so all that info would be populated. I'm assuming this works for the V2 boards. Otherwise if you copied what's in the FPP Mapping column on your second image to the falcon controller you should be right.

    Also a noob here so forgive me if I send you on a tangent!
     
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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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  12. Doctor_007

    Doctor_007 Apprentice Elf

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    Look correct as far as I can tell!
     
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  13. lytnin

    lytnin Apprentice Elf

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    Just my 2 cents, but all of the above settings assume that every output (Port) is fully populated.
    Given that each string in the tree is 32 pixels, I'd be inclined to set up each universe (1-6) to only utilise the output as 5 strings (ie 160pixels /480 channels)
    So for universe 1-4 on output #1 you'd have 640 pixels, and stop at the end of a string.
    Output #2 would be Universe 5-6 also set to 480 channels each. This would be the last 10 strings of 32 (320 pixels/ 960 channels)
    Unless you were physically going to connect the next element in your display to the end of your megatree, you wouldn't use Universe 7&8 on output #2.
    I guess what I'm trying to say is, think about how the strings and props will be physically connected in the field and design around that.
    Again, just my 2 cents.

    One last thing, if the strings are connected going up/down/up/down etc, then you might need something in the Zig Cnt column. (I'm not 100% on that one)
     
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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    Ok got most of my tree working correctly. But I have a problem.
    On ch 1 I have 21 strips of 32 nodes then 8 nodes on the next strip going on.
    Then on ch 2 I have 8 strips of 32 nodes then 24 nodes on the next strip.
    I can see that the 8 from ch1 and 24 from ch2 make up the 32 but that still only makes it 29 strips in total.
    Also the strips from ch2 are different. say I put bars up in xlights they don't line up? what am I missing?
     
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    mike williamson

    mike williamson Apprentice Elf

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    I think I fixed that but now I make bars go up in xlights but the tree goes in. when I change xlights direction to down tree goes out and so on. WTH
     

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