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Thread: Laser animation without ILDA???

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2017
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    Default Laser animation without ILDA???

    Hi there, this is my first post here, as am big Noobie, so hope this is the appropriate place for this question.

    Here's my problem;

    I'm hiring an RGB laser for a month in New zealand, as have an exhibition.

    I'm looking at making an animation (moving astrological patterns) for a laser projection, that will replay on loop. There will be no real time tinkering with the show. Am I able to get around hiring a (costly) ILDA controller, and instead manage to project my animation through some other format, maybe by using a DMX controller, or perhaps some other easy solution?

    this is the laser that I'm hiring,

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwCDTtvx6TM

  2. #2
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    Aug 2009
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    If the laser has an SD card reader you could put the animations in there and let it play it on loop. Maybe you can use DMX to control which file gets played when, I don't know the capabilities of the laser. But you won't be able to display a fully custom animation through DMX otherwise.

    If not, basic ILDA controllers aren't that expensive, you can get one for less than $100 these days.

  3. #3
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    Maybe not the best hire choice for your purposes - I don' think it has an SD card and can't find a manufacturer's website.

    Looking here: https://djcity.com.au/product/eclips...r-laser-light/

    It looks like a Chinese largely e-bay sold laser - it's only TTL as well = 6 colours, so no mixing / blends. I'd suggest that for some starfield elements such as nebula you might want analogue modulation to allow for blended colouration.

    On that basis, it's likely you will need some ILDA control. Even with DMX and an SD card, you're going to need to create your astrological patterns as it's unlikely any laser would come with star maps as pre-supplied frames.

    I suggest you investigate software options, whether there are affordable purchasable astrological frames that are compatible with the software you might have in mind (don't forget you also need a compatible DAC with any software package), or if cost / availability prohibit the purchase of astrological frames, then explore whether or not you can actually produce these yourself in any of your possible software packages as there's little point in hiring a laser and hiring / buying a DAC and software if you can neither get nor self create the required frames.

    Also, bear in mind movement is limited unless built into the frame - Some movement maybe be possible in live play such as rotation or maybe moving the frame partially to one side (although bear in mind doing that sideways movement will produce a blank area to one side of the frame). Beyond that, more complex movement will need to be built into the frame as an animation.

  4. #4
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    Hey thanks for your helpful information guys

    So perhaps purchasing an ILDA controller will be my best bet. Im currently looking at purchasing spagetti, as a software option, If I go down that road, would I need to get a DAC as well?

    Thanks for the time you have put into your feedback so far, sorry if the question is really basic, total noob

  5. #5
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    All software control requires as a DAC to turn the digital signals from the PC into analogue signals the laser can interpret.

    Some such as Pangolin come pre-packaged with a DAC. Others such as Spagetti and LSX require you to buy a DAC separately. If keeping cost low is your main aim then, spaghetti is certainly an option. Talk to John Yahas on here as he is the author and may be able to recommend a dac to go with spahetti. I'd also recommend, whatever you consider getting, that you check that you can create what you want to create before purchase. The best way to do that is obviously via demo versions.

    Also, some members on here have experience of planetarium shows, so may be able to give advice as to what is and what is not possible and the whether the equipment you're considering can manage that, as laser does have limitations. One way around some limitations is to combine video and laser, although unless you have a projector, you're upping the expense again especially as you then need software than can run video from the time line alongside laser plus an interface to connect the video projector to the pc..

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jacksosamu View Post
    Hey thanks for your helpful information guys

    So perhaps purchasing an ILDA controller will be my best bet. Im currently looking at purchasing spagetti, as a software option, If I go down that road, would I need to get a DAC as well?

    Thanks for the time you have put into your feedback so far, sorry if the question is really basic, total noob
    I'm obviously biased as I'm the creator of both of these products I'm about to suggest, but I don't think there's much question that the cheapest option is a Helios DAC + LasershowGen. The Helios ILDA controller is less than $100. And as for the software LasershowGen, there is a completely free version that will work fine for projecting an animation in loop. The full version which would let you create a much longer show in a timeline mode is just $30. Also, the Helios controller works with other software including Spaghetti if you prefer that anyway. Take a look at the links in the signature below my post.

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