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Control Channel Output

Started by zj023, June 01, 2024, 06:58:12 PM

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zj023

So I'm setting up a new Pi to play videos to a projector and I want to be able to trigger the video to be played based on a control channel value from the sequence being played.  But, when I navigate to Outputs, Other and Add a new output, the drop down is a bit messed up.  'Control channel' is where 'Select a type' should be and 'Select a type' is where 'Control Channel' should be.  I checked this is 7.4 and 7.5. I haven't tried 8.0 pre-alpha as I really don't want to upgrade to that version just yet.  Is anyone else able to set this up or know of version where control channels work?

tbone321

That just appears to just be a minor bug.  The select a type is just a text description and is being put in alphabetical order with the rest of the actual selections but it doesn't actually let you select it.  While it needs to be fixed, it shouldn't cause any problems.

zj023

When I selected 'Select a type', it created a row that only showed a start channel and channel count, and no way to add channel values or what command preset to trigger.  Am I missing something?  I can't select "Control Channel" at all

Poporacer

Quote from: zj023 on June 01, 2024, 08:39:11 PMWhen I selected 'Select a type', it created a row that only showed a start channel and channel count
And Channel count should not be editable.

Quote from: zj023 on June 01, 2024, 08:39:11 PMand no way to add channel values or what command preset to trigger
That is by design. A control Channel is just the channel that you want to use to trigger FPP Commands. This one channel is then used in xLights to trigger whichever FPP Command you want it to trigger. That is why there are no Command presets to assign to the Control Channel, or else you would have to create a Control Channel for each trigger, that would get ugly. See below for more info.

Quote from: zj023 on June 01, 2024, 08:39:11 PMAm I missing something?
Yes, on the way that control channels work.

Quote from: zj023 on June 01, 2024, 08:39:11 PMI can't select "Control Channel" at all
It looks like you might actually have the Control channel output selected, just that the title is not populating in the field, but there are some other things missing.
What version of FPP?
What web browser are you using?
What kind of computer are you using? (Windows or Mac?)

If you want to trigger FPP to do something from within a sequence, you can use Control Channels but that is the old method and there is a far better method now by using the FPP Command Timing Track. I will briefly explain both.

Control Channel Trigger.

The Control Channel trigger is designed to use a normally unused channel in your layout to trigger one of the pre-defined Command Presets.
In xLights you have to create a model of some sort and assign it the channel you want to use for the trigger.
In FPP you have to create your Command Presets and assign a Preset Slot for the Command Preset.

For this example, we are going to create 3 Command Presets.

One for Fog On with a Command Preset Slot 3
 Fog Off with a Command Preset Slot of 6
 All Lights Off with a command Preset Slot of 1. (notice that the numbers do not need to be sequential)
 
In FPP you have to add the Control Channel output type and the Start Channel is the first channel of the model you defined in xLights to use as your trigger.
In xLights when you are sequencing, at the point that you want the trigger to happen, you will put a DMX effect on the model that you are using as your "Control Channel Model" and set the value of the first channel to be the Command Preset Slot number that you want to trigger. 
For example, at one that point you want to turn the Fog Machine on, so you would add the DMX Effect and set the first channel to 3 (the Command Preset Slot for "Fog On")
Then a little bit later you want to turn the Fog Machine off, you would assign another DMX effect to your "Control Channel Model" and set the first channel to 6.

Using xLights Timing Tracks to trigger FPP Commands

In FPP you have to create your Command Presets.

For this example, we are going to create 3 Command Presets.

One for Fog On with a Command Preset Slot 3
Fog Off with a Command Preset Slot of 6
All Lights Off with a command Preset Slot of 1. (notice that the numbers do not need to be sequential)


 In Xlights create a new timing track and select the FPP Commands Timing track.
 In xLights when you are sequencing, at the point that you want the trigger to happen, add a timing mark at the point that you want the trigger to happen and then another one just a little bit after that. Edit that Timing Track interval and put the name of the Command Preset that you want to trigger at that point. You typically edit the timing track by holding down Shift and then double clicking the timing track.


Notice with this method, that you don't need to create a model in xLights to capture your trigger events and that you don't have to add effects to your models.
If to err is human, I am more human than most people.

zj023

Quote from: Poporacer on June 02, 2024, 08:48:34 AMYes, on the way that control channels work.
That is definitely the case  ;D


Quote from: Poporacer on June 02, 2024, 08:48:34 AMWhat version of FPP?

What web browser are you using?
What kind of computer are you using? (Windows or Mac?)

Mac and Safari.
I started out on 7.1 which when I selected the Command Channel, it gave me options to set the channel value and what command preset I wanted it to fire, but this never worked, which due to a bug or my ignorance I don't know.  But I did find a post online that led me to believe it didn't work due to a bug, so I upgraded to 7.4 and subsequently 7.5, and when the didn't show the same as 7.1, I was thrown.  So I apologize for my confusion on how it was actually supposed to work.

I appreciate you explaining how it does work and the command timing track seems like a fantastic solution.  I didn't realize that was an option.

I'm going to go give this a try.

I'm often in the weeds.  Sometimes I find the path on my own and sometimes I need pulled back.  Thanks for pulling me back.


Poporacer

Quote from: zj023 on June 02, 2024, 10:59:07 AMBut I did find a post online that led me to believe it didn't work due to a bug, so I upgraded to 7.4 and subsequently 7.5, and when the didn't show the same as 7.1
They all show the same for me. I am not sure why you are not getting the additional option. Are you on the correct OS version for the FPP Version?
A screenshot of your Help>About page will help.
You cannot view this attachment.
If to err is human, I am more human than most people.

zj023

#6
Quote from: Poporacer on June 02, 2024, 02:34:25 PMA screenshot of your Help>About page will help.
The 7.4 is on the latest, I believe.  The 7.5 pi, which was upgraded from 7.1, is a little further behind.  Do you think a fresh image would have fixed my issue in the first place?

I did try out the FPP Command timing track and it worked perfectly, so thank you for pointing me in that direction.

Poporacer

Quote from: zj023 on June 02, 2024, 06:16:20 PMThe 7.5 pi, which was upgraded from 7.1, is a little further behind.
In your screenshot, your FPP with V 7.5-5 is showing an OS of v2023-08 but the correct OS for 7.5-5 is v2023-12. I don't know if that would cause the issue you are seeing, but it isn't recommended to use an outdated OS.

Quote from: zj023 on June 02, 2024, 06:16:20 PMDo you think a fresh image would have fixed my issue in the first place?
Or an fppos upgrade, that way you don't have to remove the SD card and reconfigure all of your settings.

Quote from: zj023 on June 02, 2024, 06:16:20 PMI did try out the FPP Command timing track and it worked perfectly, so thank you for pointing me in that direction.
You're welcome and it is MUCH easier!
If to err is human, I am more human than most people.

zj023

Just out of curiosity, I did the os upgrade on the 7.5 pi and I still see the same thing when I try to set up the control channel, which doesn't look like yours.  But it's not a big deal since I don't need to use it anymore.

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