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Thread: Adding automatic mode to my projector

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
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    Switzerland
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    Default Adding automatic mode to my projector

    I'm wondering how can we simply (and for cheap) add stand alone features (with sound sensitive) to my ILDA laser projector?
    Sometimes it will be good to bring only the laser projector to the show, just plug power and play, without the computer...
    Is it a way to use the computer's microphone to change frames with the beat in the software?

    I was thinking with something like Showplayer MP12C or a Medialas HotBoard 2, but nothing about sound sensitive, only DMX control and playback...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    Orlando, FL - USA
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    Default

    Hi SBK,

    You might also consider our Flashback 3 system, which can be seen here:
    http://www.pangolin.com/flashback/flashback3.htm

    It can operate completely stand-alone with no external interface what so ever (i.e. just apply power and it starts playing), and it also can be controlled with DMX input (as far as I know, the greatest number of DMX-controlled channels in the industry) and can also be controlled by TTL triggers to start a show or trigger several different cues or animations.

    We include an easy-to-use software that you can use to create simple shows and download animations. You connect the computer to the FB3 via USB version 2.0.

    Please contact Pangolin if you want more information. We can be reached here: http://www.pangolin.com/contact

    Best regards,

    William Benner

  3. #3
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    Switzerland
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    Default

    Hi William,

    Thanks for the info, Flashback3 looks great

    But for the moment I have an Easylase card, don't think it is compatible...
    And what about the auto sound synchro, like all the 50$ laser projectors have? The FB3 card can be controlled with TTL inputs, so we could use an external card which reacts to the beat and send a TTL level to the FB3 at each beat?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
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    Melbourne, Australia
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    Default

    The FB3 will effectively replace the easylase card tho

    The sound activation in the Chinese lasers is pretty piss poor IMHO. However, given a bit of thought, im sure a micro based ad on could be designed to either trigger the via FB3 RS232, or DMX.
    Last edited by dave; 08-11-2007 at 04:17. Reason: need sleep
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
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    Default

    Hi William,

    What's the price of FB3 at the moment?

    Thanks.

    EDIT: Actually, after I did some research, it seems to be that the FB3 is designed for stand alone projectors and cannot be used with a PC, am I right? Is FB3 also comes in a PC controllable version? I'm a bit confused now as other PL members have also mentioned about LA FREAK, but I couldn't get any informations on that one. How many packages are there actually? Could anyone please point me out to the right direction?

    Thanks.
    Last edited by VaThInK; 08-12-2007 at 07:30.

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Orlando, FL - USA
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    Default

    Hi VaThInK,

    The FB3 can be controlled in the following ways:

    1. Automatic -- just apply power and it starts playing one or more cues.

    2. DMX-512 -- you can control things like the Page, Cue, Size, Position, Rotation, Color, Write-erase, Animation rate, Scan rate, and a few other things I can't ever remember off the top of my head. As far as I know, it has the greatest number of DMX-controlled channels of any board-level laser controller.

    3. Serial -- if you have an RS-232 serial port at 115kbaud, you can control all aspects of the FB3. Special builds can be made for other baud rates if needed.

    4. TTL -- We have a way that you can fire seven different cues with TTL input.

    5. "Beat" -- there is a way you can use the MIDI input port on an FB3 to connect a single "Beat" input from another circuit board, and the FB3 will automatically change cues to the beat of the music.

    6. USB 2.0 -- as far as I know, the only commercially-available laser controller that works with USB 2.0. The USB can be used to download animations to the on-board memory card, or to simply use the FB3 as what people on this board call a "DAC".


    You mentioned cheap Chinese projectors. One thing to keep in mind is that many Chinese projectors are "Powered by" the FB3.

    All of the above is possible due to a "daughterboard" type architecture. Capability may be added to the FB3 by adding one or more daughterboards.

    Pangolin sells an Evaluation Package that includes the FB3 along with the DMX and USB daughterboards, removable memory module, software, and terminated connectors all for $595. If you don't need the USB or DMX daughterboards, the price can be reduced.

    It's a pretty cool little board, and it only requires a single +5V power supply that has non-critical voltage requirements. At tradeshows, we run it off of a few AA batteries...

    If you want more information, you should contact Pangolin at: www.pangolin.com/contact

    Best regards,

    William Benner

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    UK
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    Default

    I have also been looking at the FB3 for my new projector, but as SBK has said it would be nice for some "STL" (sound to light) stand alone feature.

    Am I understanding correctly that you can use the FB3 DMX daughter board to achieve this?

    Where would we attach the internal microphone or is it a case of requiring another bit of circuitry to go onto the DMX board to achieve the STL feature we want?

    And is it possible to make the FB3 only play “beam” effects and not text when in “stand alone” mode?

    Also, as I`m here..... Dose the FB3 software support Vista?

    Thanks,
    Regards,

    Aidan

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Pangolin View Post
    ...there is a way you can use the MIDI input port on an FB3...
    MIDI, Bill? Does it use that and the serial port without needing the USB or DMX boards? If so, I'm in, I'll start saving right away. What can the MIDI input do for it? I had a look on the FB3 page and your earlier post, but the only mention of MIDI (since a discussion some time back) seems to be the one I just quoted.

  9. #9
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    For those of you who might be interested in implementing MIDI with your FB3 along with DMX (as I am) -

    Chauvet & Elation (and probably others) are both making very reasonably-priced DMX controller consoles ($250 or less) that provide DMX controls AND accept MIDI input to activate many of the console features, without having to buy any additional DMX/MIDI conversion units. Some of the DMX controllers also accept audio input to trigger DMX functions.

    To use this arrangement, the DMX controller would connect to the FB3 through the DMX connector on the daughterboard. The MIDI connection to the DMX controller would need to come from a MIDI interface on your PC or from a separate MIDI controller.

    For me, this provides the best of everything when using the DMX-controlled FB3 interface - you can use the DMX controller for real-time control of the FB3 (and other DMX lighting effects), and use the MIDI input of the controller to sync with existing MIDI sequencers and controllers.

    If anyone is interested, I put together a MS Word chart comparing features and capabilities of several controllers in the price range I mentioned - PM me if you're interested in a copy!
    RR

    Metrologic HeNe 3.3mw Modulated laser, 2 Radio Shack motors, and a broken mirror.
    1979.
    Sweet.....

  10. #10
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    Nov 2005
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Doctor View Post
    MIDI, Bill? Does it use that and the serial port without needing the USB or DMX boards? If so, I'm in, I'll start saving right away. What can the MIDI input do for it? I had a look on the FB3 page and your earlier post, but the only mention of MIDI (since a discussion some time back) seems to be the one I just quoted.

    Midi is part of the DMX add on.
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