Author Topic: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope  (Read 1753 times)

Offline gilv58

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Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« on: January 24, 2017, 11:49:00 AM »
Hi all
First a brief background. As some may know I did the animated Christmas lights thing back in 2005 & 2006 small shows with -dare I say- Animated Lighting equipment. I quickly became frustrated with it and in 2009 I moved to a SanDevice  E682 controller. Had limited success with it.  But I did nothing with it and this passion lay dormant for years.


This year I decided to get back into an activity that brought me so much joy in the past. Remembering my experience with AL I decided to give LOR a try. I had just started buying their controllers (a CMB-24D) when I stumbled on FPP and Falcon controllers and simply fell in love with the design and overall concept.


So I have decided to give it a go again and this year. For a change I am starting on time - now!


So this is where I am at:
  • I bought a RaPi3 and successfully installed FPP and communicating wirelessly on my local network.
  • I have xLights installed on my Mac and PC.
  • I have ordered an F16v2R - hopefully will be here in Feb
  • Through this forum I have purchase an F16V2R with expansion board, and a PiCap from memebers here.
  • I still have some 6 mini-tree props populated with dumb strings - from my previous effort
  • The SansDevice E682 controller is being re-flashed with newest configuration and network port
  • I have a BBB and am waiting for an Octoscroller and some P10 panels (did I mention I am crazy)
I wish to start kinda small this year I want my display to have:
  • 6 mini trees with dumb strings
  • two or four arches (with pixels-ribbons i think)
  • a mega tree
  • some flood lights
Ok enough background so please what's next?


I am an Agile coach and would like to generate a prioritized do-to list of possible so I can build a Scrum board I can use to guide me through this project


Thanks in advance for your advice.


Gil V.
Gil V.

Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2017, 06:38:01 AM »
We have lights !!!


Ok thanks to a member here I got a hold of a Falcon PiCap. I had already set up a RaPi3 with FPP and was able to drive two 50 pixel strips with the PiCap and FPP. I was even crated a simple sequence in xLight, import the sequence and run it.


Progress.


Video of lights flashing - sorry not my best video and audio is from an other Youtube video of a demo of how to get it done.


https://youtu.be/VRKKPnR2uk0


I am still not sure I totally understand how to properly set up channels in xLights and in FPP. Hopefully the bulb will turn on before this gets a bit more complex.








Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2017, 01:42:41 PM »
Does this layout look correct?




Offline rlemery

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2017, 03:33:16 PM »
Layout looks good. If you have wifi working the pi3 with the pi hat can be wireless.

Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk

728 lor channels
5492 pixels

Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2017, 08:11:41 PM »
rlemery


Thanks


Right now I have the one RaPi3's WiFi working ok, I had intend to make that the Master. The WiFi on the RaPi3 that has the PiCap attached is not longer "communicating" I can ping the wlan0 IP but the FPP browser will not "find that IP.


 

Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2017, 06:33:40 AM »
Ok I have made some progress but now I am hitting a small wall.


This is what I have done so far:
I have one Pi3 with a PiCap and an XLights sequence. I set up the channels in FPP, uploaded the sequence file, created a schedule and lights operate as expected. The sequence starts and stops as scheduled. Hurray. Baby step #1 ... checked


Now I wish to have another Pi3 as my Master (see my topology above) and the Pi with the PiCap, which will drive my leaping arches, as the slave.


I have both PIs hard wired to a switch. When setting up my master Pi it discovers it's own wired IP and the slave's wired IP so far so good- I think. I synced the files. but the schedule nor the sequence work.


I do not have the PiCap channels defined on the master Pi.


What am I missing? what am I doing wrong?

***** never mind I figured it out, master/slave is working well now ********


Gil V.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2017, 08:13:40 AM by gilv58 »

Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2017, 06:36:29 AM »
Layout looks good. If you have wifi working the pi3 with the pi hat can be wireless.

Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk


rlemery


The reason I wish to do thing through the switch is the show will not be deployed near my house. I am setting this up to run in my restaurant and I need it to work independent of a wireless network.


Thanks


Gil V.

Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2017, 08:22:51 AM »
So now I have a master/slave Pi3 working. the second Pi3 has a PiCap and is correctly driving two strings of pixels.


Now I have to wait for my F16V2-R to arrive.


I'll spend some time developing a more complex sequence that includes the future channels of the F16V2. Agggg the wait!


I have six mini trees with dumb pixels and a CMB24-D controller leftover from my previous efforts. Not sure if I should re-do the mini trees with smart pixels and drive everything with the upcoming F16 V2 or leave the trees as they are and connect the CMB24-D to the PiCap. The down side of re-doing the trees is having to wait until the F16 gets here. Versus having something to play with now if I keep the CMB24-D and dumb pixel trees.


Suggestions?


Gil V.

Offline Dabil

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2017, 04:49:18 PM »
I'd keep the dumb pixels, but turn them into singing face Christmas tree's. Then redo the mini trees in smart pixels.

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Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2017, 12:15:16 PM »
Dabil


What an excellent idea.  How do I control the signing light bulb? Will each lip gesture take up a connection on the F16? If I have three signing light bulbs, each will consume 7 connections that is 21 connections?!?

Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2017, 12:25:45 PM »
Well its the old "two step forward one step back". I got my small 2 RaPi network going with one Pi3 as Master end the other Pi - the one with the PiCap installed - being the Slave working. But now I have a set back.

Wanting to expand the network a bit, I connected a working CMB24-D controller to the PiCap's RJ45. The controller status light was on I connected a string of lights to it but they did not respond at all. Furthermore, now the RaPi with the PiCap is not responding either. Can't get the FPP page to load up. I tried re-installing all the software on the RaPi and nothing. I don't wish to mess with the one Pi that is working so I am waiting delivery of a couple of replacement RaPi - thank God for Amazon same day delivery!!!


So I am done with the CM24-D.  Hopefully I will get a F16V2R soon.


Back to working with xLights while controllers arrive.   A bit of a bummer ...


Maybe I'll do some work on the props. If the pixels and light strips arrive this weekend. One can only hope.


Gil V.

Offline lwillisjr

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2017, 03:35:41 PM »
I'm sure the experts will chime in. But I don't believe the RJ45 jack on the CMB24D board is not a standard ethernet connection. It expects DMX protocol which is not E1.31

Offline rlemery

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2017, 03:50:20 PM »
To use a cmb24 you need a crossover cable unless the picap has a jumper that can be set to lor mode. All lor units use a different set of pins on the rj45 connection. I have ran the cmb24 with several different controller's over the last few years without problems with crossover cables. You also must set the dip switches to the proper dmx starting channel.

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Offline gilv58

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2017, 05:32:28 PM »
rlemery


The PiCap does have bot a LOR and DMX set of jumper settings. I assumed that if I placed the jumpers on both the PiCap and the CMB24-D to DMX I could use a standard cat 5 and did not need a crossover cable.


See video link bellow.

But I could be wrong?


lwillisjr
You are correct, the RJ-45 on the PiCap is not E1.31 but neither is the CMB24-D. The CMB24-D can be set to receive LOR or standard DMX via jumpers on the board. So I should be able to connect the PiCap's RJ-45 port to a DMX controller like the CMB24-D when its set to DMX.


See this video.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KLZF2EWTSk


Still I must be doing something wrong. Could be channel address mis-match.


And to add insult to injury now my Pi3/PiCap is not connecting to my network....aggggg


Gil V.

Offline K-State Fan

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Re: Zero to Lights in 60 Days - I hope
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2017, 06:12:40 AM »
Set the jumpers on the piCap to DMX and set the jumpers on the CMB24D to DMX also.  No need for a crossover cable.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2017, 06:24:39 AM by K-State Fan »

 

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