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The most amazing thing I have seen, the Pi Player from Dave Pitts

Discussion in 'xLights (Nutcracker)' started by smeighan, Jul 18, 2013.

  1. smeighan

    smeighan Dedicated Elf

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    While at the Academy , Dave Pitts was showing his Rhasberry Pi Player (http://www.amazon.com/Raspberry-Pi-Model-Revision-512MB/dp/B009SQQF9C)


    Here are the technical words from Daves site http://falconchristmas.com/forum/index.php?topic=26.0


    Features of the software.
    * Outputs at least 128 Universes of E131
    * Plays music files and outputs audio on 3.5mm jack.
    * Embedded web page configuration.
    Setup playlists, schedules, upload sequence and music files. Setup optional RDS feature.
    * Uses a user defined NTP server to keep accurate time.
    * FTP Server (Optional)
    Can be used to transfer files to player. FTP transfers of 64 MB sequence files are averaging 10 seconds.
    * Optional Server and Client operation by using inexpensive USB wireless interface in each.
    Using USB wireless card in both server and clients will allow E131 data to be transmitted on hard wired interface
    and have all sync information sent on wireless interface. Allowing for a small amount of data on the wireless sync network.
    USB network interfaces are about $10.00.
    * Optional RTC clock board if NTP is not available.
    * Optional RDS ASCII output.
    *Play video on 1080p HDMI output.
    * Client and slave will be same software just a configuration change.
    * Output up to 32768 channel for Pixelnet, 6144 channels of DMX. 12 RS-485 circuits. (Optional Falcon Pixelnet/DMX board (FPD) needed)

    Xlights is used to convert sequence data to FPP file format.





    Here are my words, Freakin Awesome!!


    I have never seen my sequences run so crisply. You probably know that my lights are mounted in my basement ceiling (https://vimeo.com/67334993). I run sequences hundreds of times per year as I develop Nutcracker. I have never seen my sequences look this good!


    how it works.


    Basically, pi player runs your show (Think of it as the scheduler of xLights and my show computer is now on this small board).


    This is now my new show computer


    [​IMG]


    The Rhasberry Pi is running a full Linux OS and has two video outputs (Composite and HDMI), audio, ethernet, 2 usb ports, a sd card and other stuff.


    Dave is writing the software to run the Pi and he is giving it away for free. It will be open sourced the same as xLights, Vixen and Nutcracker.


    Dave has now tested that the Rhasberry Pi will be able to output 1080p Video during your show. He is developing slaves that will be connected wireless.


    So how does this all work


    After getting the PI setup
    1) you open a browser to address 192.168.0.2. You will now get a Falcon Pi setup screen.
    2)You first upload your sequences. Your Vixen, LOR, LSP, Xlights sequences need to be converted into Pi Sequence files. You will find this option on the Convert tab of xLights.
    3)You also need to upload your mp3 music files and any mp4 video files you might want in your show. Want Virtual Santa timed as part of show? You now can get it.
    4)You next go to a screen to create play lists, and schedule your show.
    5)You can start the show, start a song, stop a song immediately or gracefully. The scheduler will have all the options that xLights scheduler has.


    You want to change a song? Use the ftp option and upload a new Pi Sequence file. You can do this while the current sequence is playing. There is zero lag while the file uploads!


    I ran the full Wizards of Winter on my 7200 channel tree and saw zero latency, all audacity timing marks were spot on.


    This pi player can be used with all hardware controllers (P12r, E682, Etherdongle, Falcon FPD, others that have E1.31 input). You can get DMX output depending on your controller. Currently there is NOT a solution for the legacy LOR proprietary controllers. So if you use E1.31 and/or DMX, this will work.


    Here is picture showing how it ties together
    http://nutcracker123.com/nutcracker/images/falcon_pi.pdf




    MyKroft and Mat er Daddy are helping Dave develop the software, Software is supposed to be available for download within next 1-2 weeks.


    Simply amazing ....




    sean
     
  2. battle79

    battle79 Full Time Elf

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    Can't wait to see some enterprising person make this work with Vixen 3.
    Thinking best bet is to redirect the E1.31 output straight to a file then process the file into FPP format ready for transfer.
    Basically this would be a output module for vixen 3, output sequence to FPP format.

    Here's Hoping,
    Rowan
     
  3. GoofyGuy

    GoofyGuy Guest

    Although I may not have a show this year, If I just run last years 4 sequences this is my solution. I purchased the Pi early spring when he started to tease us. Im happy its starting to see light. I hope he setups a donation paypal just as you did for us to send a few bucks for his trouble.
     
  4. rvenegas

    rvenegas Apprentice Elf

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    [​IMG]



    I want one of those!!!!!!!!
     
  5. OP
    OP
    smeighan

    smeighan Dedicated Elf

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    Dave is a funny guy, his hardware boards he has zero markup.
    I am getting is FPD (Falcon Pixelnet DMX) board. It has 32K channels and those can be split as Pixelnet channels or DMX. Up to 6K channels of DMX. Component costs are $100, he will sell them for $115 assembled. not $120, $130. He just wants to help people get blinky.


    When his pi player ran my 7K channels, it was amzing.


    BTW, the Rhasberry PI has HDMI, Composite NTSC and Compiste PAL so video should work anywhere in the world. I will be adding video to my show this year.


    thanks
    sean
     
  6. GoofyGuy

    GoofyGuy Guest

    I have been using mine for the last 3 months as a wifi movie player in my bedroom. Streaming video from my PC. The HDMI is amazing out of this little box.
     
  7. Madko

    Madko Full Time Elf

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    Would this work with a HLS program?
     
  8. Habbosrus

    Habbosrus New house (again) 2017

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    I asked Dave this question a couple of weeks ago. He said he will collaborate with Joe to add HLS functionality. He is going to add HLS input into the Xlights/Nutcracker convert tab. This will enable conversion to Falcon Pi Player (.fseq) files.
     
  9. vincerules

    vincerules Full Time Elf

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    Thanks for the write up on this, I wouldn't have known about it otherwise.

    I am using LSP, and I know it is supposed to have a brand new scheduler in the new version, but I love the idea of running my show from a RPi and not have to worry about the random Windows issues that pop up from time to time.
     
  10. AAH

    AAH I love blinky lights :) Community Project Designer

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    As much as I love my LOR scheduler I might look at using this player from Dave as it frees up my laptop and will let me make some sequencing changes during the night when I can actually see what my lights are doing. The FPD board might be 1 of the ones I gave Dave a hand with in chat. At the time the specs sounded good. I might have to look at this too :)
    Nice to see the developer of a simply amazing bit of blinky programming (nutcracker) say that the most amazing thing he has seen is another bit of lighting kit that is also free.
    Props to both David and Sean and to all the others who are helping the entire free world blink their lights at Christmas.
     
  11. fasteddy

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

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    I actually saw this first hand at the Texas Academy and must say i was very impressed and believe that with this little piece of hardware and the accompanying software that using computers for a scheduler may just be a thing of the past in the future for our hobby.
    I believe for the DIY community this is the biggest thing to come out since pixel controllers
     
  12. kane

    kane Dedicated Elf

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    Agreed. Now we just need a way to export LSP sequences to this format
     
  13. adski

    adski Dave Brown

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    And you all wondered why I liked the Helix controller ::) - much the same principle.

    But this looks even better .... and cheaper :)

    Dave
     
  14. dpavisic

    dpavisic Full Time Elf

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    This is probably the wrong spot for this, but I can't seem to be able to order the Pi as the website says that it can't be shipped to my address in Australia. I suspect this is because free shipping to Australia would be expensive. Is there a way I can buy the Pi?

    Cheers
     
  15. battle79

    battle79 Full Time Elf

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    in Australia the official distributor is Element14
    http://au.element14.com/
    Actually costs around $41 + shipping.
    Can recommend getting a wifi dongle so that you can connect to if via wifi and use the Ethernet output for e1.31 output.

    Cheers,
     

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