Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 17

Thread: QM2000.Net... obsolete or not?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Ireland
    Posts
    45

    Default QM2000.Net... obsolete or not?

    So I've had my sights set on getting Beyond this summer and a guy I do some work with is offering to sell me a QM2000.Net which has a Beyond licence on it...among some other bits of laser gear. It's about 3 years old and has very little use...6 or 7 shows per year maybe..

    I thought this was fairly cutting edge kit given that you can use cat5 instead of ILDA etc and it seems to be a fairly well built piece of hardware..but a few people have cautioned me against buying it, one of them saying ''it's obsolete gear now'' and that FB3 and FB4 have better output... Thing is I've only ever used FB3 controllers so I have no experience with the advantages/disadvantages of a QM2000.Net. I checked with Pangolin and I'll definitely be able to mix it along with my FB3s in a multi-controller setup for zone chases etc in Beyond..

    But wondering are there actually any disadvantages to integrating a QM2000.Net into my setup or are they just as good as FB3/4? It seems like a no brainer seeing as its being priced at a little more than what a beyond essentials licence would cost me on its own!

    Any advice would be much appreciated!

  2. #2
    Bradfo69's Avatar
    Bradfo69 is online now Pending BST Forum Purchases: $47,127,283.53
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Wilmington, DE
    Posts
    5,984

    Default

    To hear Bill Benner tell it, they're still selling an awful lot of QM's, as we've raised the question before at some LEM's when he has attended. The QM is still a pretty solid piece of hardware since it's really an independent computer on a card and I suppose most people that have them will hang on to them but, the value has dropped an awful lot. They're almost hard to give away. I have I think 4, including one in a .net box and I'm betting it's been a couple years since I have used any of them. I use the FB3 exclusively and haven't jumped to the FB4 yet. The QM2000.net will require some configuring but, if you work much with networking, that "should" be simple but, I'm not so I had to get Aaron at Pangolin to get mine to work. Haven't used it since that day.
    .
    I really guess it comes down to what you are using it for. If it's playing shows at home or for friends with just 1 projector, then sure, it's probably worthwhile since it's likely the least expensive point of entry right now. If you're going to be doing things with multiple projectors and commercial shows, then spend some more and probably go the FB4 route right from the start.
    PM Sent...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    3,140

    Default

    They are not absolete but try to avoid using a laptop intergrated network card.. get an external USB 3.0 network adapter with an intel chip (realtek sucks). Something like a J5 create that you can buy on best buy

  4. #4
    mixedgas's Avatar
    mixedgas is offline Creaky Old Award Winning Bastard Technologist
    Infinitus Excellentia Ion Laser Dominatus
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    A lab with some dripping water on the floor.
    Posts
    9,205

    Default

    As the used price of my used QM2000 (In a small Mini-Tower PC) has dropped to a bit more one half of what I paid for it(700$) , but the functionality is still very, very good, you can pry it from my cold dead hands. :-) In some ways its still the "Gold Standard" output device, and will often keep the show rolling as a "bus master" when the host PC itself has crashed. Yes, you have to lug a big box around, which makes many modern laserists un-comfortable. There has been this horrible obsession towards miniaturization in the show industry in the last ten or so years, so often the deciding factor between a FB and a PCI card is simply the desire to have very small gear, that you can take on a plane as "carry on". Yet very few of that group actually fly to their gigs.

    PS Pangolin's LD2000 rarely crashes, have not yet got to Beyond due to limited budget, but have seen it, and like it.
    ~
    I kept my earlier QM32 for like 15 years, so the cards are well built and stay running, wish I could say as much for the many host PCs over the years. MY old QM32 is still keeping a very low budget hobbyist happy in an ancient ISA machine, so...
    ~
    Steve
    Last edited by mixedgas; 05-10-2017 at 15:35.
    Qui habet Christos, habet Vitam!
    I should have rented the space under my name for advertising.
    When I still could have...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    The West
    Posts
    1,249

    Default

    Fwiw, I recently sold my QM.net systems for 700 , including Beyond essentials.
    RGB laser projectors
    Pangolin Beyond .NET
    APC40 Midi controllers
    Pangolin FB3 controllers
    DZ splitter
    LS MegaWatt Green Machine

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Sumter, SC
    Posts
    269

    Default

    I've thought about getting one myself. I currently have my QM2000 installed in a system located in a HTPC style case. The ability to have a show continue running after a PC crash is what I like about the QM2000. I wish they would make something that uses updated memory with a capacity up to at least 4GB. I also wish it would work with Linux. I have a strong feeling I won't be buying Windows OS anymore. 7 is the last of them for me.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    2,147,488,856

    Default

    As others have said, the QM is a solid piece of hardware and it is absolutely still viable. It also plays well with others. I typically run QMs and FB3s together when using Beyond.

    However, I have heard of a few people having problems with running *lots* of QMs on .net boxes with Beyond. It seems that above 5 or 6 QMs, some people start to have issues. I have not personally experienced this, however. I should also note that all my QMs (I currently have 4) live in PCI slots inside desktop computers, so I can't really speak about .net box problems. I simply network the computers and I'm golden.

    All this being said, I would recommend getting the QM simply because it opens up some new options for you. For one, you can run the Winamp Laser Visualizer plug-in. OK, it's not all that great, but it is kinda cool to have a fully-automated display that is already beat-synchronized for you. At the very least, it's fun for showing off in the living room! Then too, you can play Asteroids in laser on the QM. (Pangolin includes a licensed version of the game.) And if you download LaserMame and can source the ROM files, you can also play a bunch of other 80's-era vector-art video games, like tempest, crystal castles, star trek, star wars, omega race, battle zone, and others...

    The QM is the one controller from Pangolin that runs just about all their software. Of course you can run Beyond, and you can also run the original Showtime and Laser Show Designer software. But you can also run LA Studio, and I think maybe even a version of Phoenix now? Oh yeah, and LivePro, if you have the license for it. But in addition to all the Pangolin software, you can also run other software. I know LSX will work with the QM, and so will Mamba Black. I think there are a few other programs that also support the QM as an output device too.

    Bottom line: if you can snag a QM with Beyond for the cost of the Beyond license for one of your FB3s, it's a no-brainer. Get the QM. Once you have at least one device that has a valid Beyond license, ALL your controllers can be used in conjunction with the one that has the license. So if you already have 3 FB3s you want to use with this QM, you don't need to purchase 3 more Beyond licenses.

    Adam

    PS: Despite the QMs utility, robustness, and flexibility, the price for a used one has fallen through the floor in the last 18 months as people upgrade to FB4. I paid under $300 for my last QM, and they routinely sell on E-bay for between $250 and $275. However, that's for a bare-bones Intro board with no extra licenses.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Ireland
    Posts
    45

    Default

    Thanks a lot for the input on this folks! My main goal is to use Beyond with the QM2000 alongside a couple of fb3s for my shows. Hmm I wasn't aware there would be any configuring involved just thought it would be plug in and go like you would with an fb3 The unit I'm being offered is A QM2000 inside the portable Pangolin housing with its own power supply etc, so in terms of practicability it seems like a good shout! Think Pangolin are calling it a 'laptop friendly box'.

    Quote Originally Posted by buffo View Post
    As others have said, the QM is a solid piece of hardware and it is absolutely still viable. It also plays well with others. I typically run QMs and FB3s together when using Beyond.
    Sounds good, once you have the QM configured is it relatively quick then to do a setup with say a QM and a couple of FB3s?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    2,147,488,856

    Default

    When using Beyond, both the QM and the FB3 are plug-and-play. I routinely use both on the same machine without issues. The only "setup" required is setting up the zones, but that is something you would do with any controller.

    But yeah, as soon as you plug in another FB3, Beyond immediately recognizes it as a new controller and adds it to the list. You can immediately start using it, but most people will take the time to run through the geometric correction, size adjustment, and positional offset settings first.

    And once you set up all your zone-specific settings for a given controller, you can save everything to a file so the next time you plug that controller in you can load the same settings.

    Adam

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Ireland
    Posts
    45

    Default

    Ah yes I suppose i should have said 'configuring' as opposed to setup, didn't mean it in relation to zoning/projector settings. Seen Brad mentioned earlier in the thread about network configuring of the device when he got his. Is this just something that needs to be done initially when get the controller and then from there on out it's fine? Sorry if I'm confusing things, just never done networking before with laser control

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •