Author Topic: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question  (Read 325 times)

Offline bhensley

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F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« on: September 25, 2017, 12:39:47 PM »
Newbie here. Looking to buy my first pixel controller and want to start small with the hopes of expanding in the future. Thinking gutters / garage this year. Had some initial questions to help my buying decisions.

Outside of number of ports and the number of strings I can drive, is there any other main differences between the two boards? Especially if I only need 4 ports today.

Second question, If I want to add a mega tree next year, i'll need to drive more pixels / ports and I don't think the expansion boards can get me there (correct me if i'm wrong) to provide enough. How does one get two falcon controllers with more ports to talk, do both connect to a Raspberry Pi (brain) and on a network I can get a F16v3 next year and a F4v3 both communicating easily?


Appreciate the guidance.

Cheers,
Brian

Cheers,
Brian

Tektronix oscilloscope AE, blogger and wow i'm really liking my falcon F16v3, xlights and the world of smart pixels. :D :D  My Blog/Tutorials >> www.brianhensley.net

Offline rstehle

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Re: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2017, 12:58:22 PM »
Yes, you can use the Raspberry Pi's to communicate with your controllers.  Also, the F16v3 has a network switch built in so you can daisy chain controllers off of it.

Offline jnealand

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Re: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2017, 01:07:07 PM »
I have a Pi3 with every F16v2 & 3 (4) that I own.  However the F16v3 will shortly (I hope) have the ability to be a slave to an FPP master.  The hardware is there, but no firmware yet.  For the difference in dollars I would go with the F16v3.  I do not know of anyone who regrets that decision.
Jim Nealand
Kennesaw, GA
Lynx, Falcon, XL, FPP

Offline bhensley

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Re: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2017, 01:14:50 PM »
Yes, you can use the Raspberry Pi's to communicate with your controllers.  Also, the F16v3 has a network switch built in so you can daisy chain controllers off of it.


Ahhh, I do remember seeing the inbound/outbound Ethernet ports.

Offline algerdes

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Re: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2017, 01:16:47 PM »
For dense output items (megatrees, grouped props, etc.) the F16 is it. 


We use 8 of the F4s (versions 2 and 3) at different places around the display that don't have the need for a lot of outputs.  The beauty of the F4 is the ability to add 2 remotes, giving another 8 outputs for a total of 12.  The remotes can be up to 250-300' away from the main unit.


FYI - You can use remotes with the F16 as well, but for small groups of props, I'll use an F4.


There are those that will use far fewer controllers and run some pretty good lengths to their props.  These folks use the F16, among others.

Offline bhensley

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Re: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2017, 01:28:32 PM »
I have a Pi3 with every F16v2 & 3 (4) that I own.  However the F16v3 will shortly (I hope) have the ability to be a slave to an FPP master.  The hardware is there, but no firmware yet.  For the difference in dollars I would go with the F16v3.  I do not know of anyone who regrets that decision.


Totally forgot about the daisychaining of Ethernet ports  :D  So do you have a pi for each controller? or one running your whole display?


Also if I want to run some small displays 10'-15' away, how far can I run some of the ports via wire before they hit the pixels? I'm worried about signal strength over long distances.

Really appreciate the feedback.

Cheers,
Brian

Offline rstehle

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Re: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2017, 03:38:34 PM »
Totally forgot about the daisychaining of Ethernet ports  :D  So do you have a pi for each controller? or one running your whole display?

Also if I want to run some small displays 10'-15' away, how far can I run some of the ports via wire before they hit the pixels? I'm worried about signal strength over long distances.

Really appreciate the feedback.

Cheers,
Brian

I think most folks use at least 2 Pi's, one inside as a master, and one (or more) outside as a remote.  Some folks use only one and load their sequences directly to it and let it run in standalone mode.  If you do a search on this forum you will get all the info you need to use your Pi if you want to go that direction.

The F16's can easily go 10-15' to your first pixel.  If you use Cat5 you can go 30' or more......... 8)

Offline bhensley

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Re: F4v3 vs F16v3 - Difference question
« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2017, 06:16:01 PM »
Totally forgot about the daisychaining of Ethernet ports  :D  So do you have a pi for each controller? or one running your whole display?

Also if I want to run some small displays 10'-15' away, how far can I run some of the ports via wire before they hit the pixels? I'm worried about signal strength over long distances.

Really appreciate the feedback.

Cheers,
Brian

I think most folks use at least 2 Pi's, one inside as a master, and one (or more) outside as a remote.  Some folks use only one and load their sequences directly to it and let it run in standalone mode.  If you do a search on this forum you will get all the info you need to use your Pi if you want to go that direction.

The F16's can easily go 10-15' to your first pixel.  If you use Cat5 you can go 30' or more......... 8)


Thank you!! I think i'll be ordering a F16v3 very soon  ;D ;D ;D

 

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