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Thread: Hello Everyone

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    East Coast , Canada
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    285

    Default Hello Everyone

    Just wanted to say hello from Nova Scotia Canada! Nice place you've got here! It feels really Comfortable... I have been looking at the forum over the last day or two and just though i would intorduce myself...

    My name is Carey Langille, i Currently run Ocean Sound Productions, an audio and video recording studio, but i also do Lasers!. I have worked for Av-Imagineering for 12 yrs as a laserist and show producer in both Toronto and Orlando Florida, But due to layoffs, have not done the laser thign for the last 3 yrs for them...

    Last summer, I really felt the need to get back into laser show design and started to put otgether a small single color system that consists of a pair of Cambridge 6800 scanners, a 300wm Lambda YAG and Pangolin QM32 16meg board with their Software running it all!

    I proceeded to create a set of shows that played at a drive-in theater for 12 weeks in the summer and got a really great resopnse, so now im have the sideline of a new business that im currently calling LASER-AD

    Im in the process of adding a red laser to the projector then blue to make a full white light rig, and im so glad to have foudn this site, with soi many were intelligent users!

    I LOVE the idea of trading ILDA frames and Animations in a database..Heck ian even put up some shows i have done myself.

    Well, i just wanted to say Hello... Cant wait to chat with some of you!
    Take care.... CArey

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    2,147,488,547

    Default Welcome!

    Hi Carey!

    Welcome to PhotonLexicon! Glad you decided to join us.

    I'm intrigued by your LASER-AD display system. You were doing outdoor shows with just 300 mw of DPSS green? Was this just graphics, or were you also doing beamshows?

    The reason I ask is that I never thought 300 mw would be enough for an outdoor show - even when you consider that you had a white wall to display your images on. (The drive-in movie screen.) Though I guess with a small audience, a really dark night, and just throwing images on the screen, you could make do with that power level so long as your images weren't too spread out. But I'm really curious as to how well it actually worked. (Do you have any pics to post?)

    If you don't mind me asking - how many people (roughly) were in attendance at these shows? And were you using the theater's speaker-boxes to provide audio to the cars to match the show? Did you have any fog or haze generators running? (No, I'm not in the business, nor do I have any plans to do so. I'm just curious about the mechanics of an outdoor show.)

    I've got a 100 mw monochrome green system based around the Alphalite controller and some 40kpps closed loop galvos right now, but I plan to add red and blue to the projector and upgrade the DAC this summer. (The Alphalite software has some "issues" that I just can't seem to work around...) It's encouraging to read about a 300 mw system that can produce visible effects outdoors... (Though, admittedly, I won't be running nearly as much green as you have.)

    I'm also curious as to your plans for the color balance in your final projector. Are you just going to fit the largest red and blue lasers that you can afford and accept the color imbalance, or are you going to try and build a balanced white light system? Because with 300 mw of green to start with, I think you're going to need well over a watt of red, and 700 + mw of blue for proper color balance. That's going to be seriously expensive, especially if you go solid state!

    I've read a lot about how color balance is so important, but recently I've seen several commercial systems that were *way* off from the theoretical "ideal" color balance. (Almost always, they favor green, though sometimes they have an abundance of red instead.) Yet these systems seem to be selling well, so there's got to be something there...

    Thus, I'm starting to wonder if the whole issue boils down to a difference of opinion between a "purist" attitude and a practical, hobbyist one.

    What's your take?

    Adam

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    East Coast , Canada
    Posts
    285

    Default

    300MW of green = 1watt of argon to the eye and works very well in the setting sun hours of the evening. I display on a 40 x 60 ft white drivein screen and use the full screen for mothin but not for final image size, unless im using a moving background. Final images or logos are usually 15x30 at max.

    Usually have about 400 cars or 1000 people per show at the drive in and the show runs Hi Fi Stereo from an FM tramsmitter to your car stereo...

    The show features music, commercials, games and ads geared towards local businness and the Drive in snak bar and facility... So far So good!

    As far as color balance goes, Im not putting the system together for BALANCED white, Im doing it for Color variations... 2 tone logos as opposed to one color.... so, i wont be using a pcaom , i currently have ttl blaning so the smooth fades will be limitted, but i will have forms of color mixing that will produce many different colors to play with....

    The Show runs for 70mins before movie time, audio only for the fisrt 45 mins then audio and laser ads, then before show starts i do 3 full animated syncronized laser pieces as strictly entertainment.... Last year i did the Simpsons, Beatles, and Was not Was.... The audience really enjoyed it, ands i will add 3 new peices this year....

    No Beams were used last year, but this year iu plan on setting up some mirror bounces back toward the audience as the beam is very visible at night even without smoke... The system will grow as the client grows.. I dont like to spend money before its made....

    Upgrade to QM2000 is a next step as well as added colors...

    Hope this answers all your questions! Have a great day!.

    P.S. As a Show Producer for AVI over the 12 year period, i was lucky enough to recieve 14 ilda awards in both abstract design and graphic / show design.. those were fun times.... OHH if you could see the abstracts!! All Analog, beautifully smooth and liguid, amazing color mods..... ho hum.... the futer is NOW!


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    489

    Default

    Welcome Laser-Ad,

    I might have bumped into you at the Laser-FX conferences in Burlington If you ever made it there when you lived in T.O.
    I caught the laser bug in 1997 .

    Did you have any Issues with business insurance where you presently live and perform ?

    I guess the laser show business took a dive in the past few years ever since that unfortunate night club Laser/ Pyro show that toasted the place on the East coast ( Rhoade Island I think ).
    The mass paranoia induced by Airline Pilots , stupid episode of Miami CSI and homeland security cops haven't done the US laser show industry any good either.
    Maybe this change is going to be good for you.
    I don't imagine you have too much competition in your neck of the woods.

    In regards to a balanced white light laser, that would be Ideal only If you had analog modulation on all your solid state lasers then you could get the 16 million color combination instead of TTL control where all you get is 7 color combinations. Still better than one boring Green color.

    I've never charged for any shows I've done so far it's all been charities to my choosing. Only outdoor show i did was on the side of a friends house way out in the country where it's nice and dark. All I have is a 200 mW Lambda Pro greenie but I recently piggybacked a red 150 mW Maxyz laser.
    I do have a SP 168 WLL , NEOS PCAOM, CT6800's etc but it's too much trouble dragging it around and setting up .

    Rick in Ontario, Canada
    Profile Redacted by Admin @ 04.24.2010

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    East Coast , Canada
    Posts
    285

    Default

    I would probably have to sent the laser i have now, back to add the analog modulation im sure.. When i bought it, Adrien, kinda swayed me away from the analog, kinda implying that it would lessen the lifespan of the laser...Is this correct ? Anyone?

    I do miss the nice smooth fades...... I have not figured a good way to do it ttl...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    2,147,488,547

    Default

    Thanks for the great info!

    Sounds like you have a nice little side business going there
    Quote Originally Posted by LASER-AD
    As a Show Producer for AVI over the 12 year period, i was lucky enough to recieve 14 ilda awards in both abstract design and graphic / show design.. those were fun times.... OHH if you could see the abstracts!! All Analog, beautifully smooth and liguid, amazing color mods.....
    Ahhh.... So you're no stranger to the laser world then. Great! Always nice to be able to pump a pro for information! :lol:

    I've seen some really nice looking abstracts, and in fact it was the abstract generator that comes bundled with the Alphalite system that first caught my attention. But there are other problems with the Alphalite software that make it very hard to use as a hobbyist, and totally impractical to use for a business...
    I would probably have to sent the laser i have now, back to add the analog modulation .... When i bought it, Adrien, kinda swayed me away from the analog, kinda implying that it would lessen the lifespan of the laser...Is this correct ? Anyone?
    Interesting... I was speaking to Sam Goldwasser about this very problem, and he seemed to be suggesting that analog modulation is actually better for the diode than TTL blanking. With TTL blanking, the diode shuts completely off which causes thermal variations within the head. He also explained that this is one of the factors behind TTL blanking-induced power loss. (As in, the laser is blanked for 20% of the time when scanning a frame, but the actual average power output is down around 50% rather than 80% as one would expect.) I have this problem with one of my cheaper Chinese DPSS lasers.

    As I understand it, the hard part about analog modulation is biasing the modulating stage (could be a simple bipolar transistor, or a JFET, MOSFET, or something more complex) such that the drive current is brought *just* below lasing threshold with a zero intensity signal. So your diode is always "on" in the sense that it's always drawing current, just not always lasing.

    The other problem is controlling the inrush of current when your intensity signal jumps back up. You don't want to fry the diode when you ramp up the current. This places some pretty tight limits on the design of the modulation stage. (And that is the very limit of my electrical theory knowledge - if you want more than that you'll have to call Sam yourself!)
    I do miss the nice smooth fades...... I have not figured a good way to do it ttl...
    If you have a good temperature-stabalized diode, then you could use pulse-width modulation to emulate analog color control. (Vary the duty cycle to simulate partial power output - the human eye will average out the results.)

    However, you may still end up running into the TTL blanking-induced power loss problem mentioned above. Then too, you'd have to be sure that your laser supports a high enough TTL blanking rate...

    Adam

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