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Thread: Newbie Building a projector from scatch

  1. #1
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    Default Newbie Building a projector from scatch

    Hello all,
    Having played around with lasers for years i'm now looking to build my own projector using the SCANPRO Series 20Kpps Galvonometer System. As detailed on the http://lasershowparts.com website, 'everything is included - just add a laser & signal'.
    As I already have a LambdaPro 100Mw laser, so i take it that apart from the afore mentioned kit, all i need is a DAC (USB)and some software (possibly Mamba)?.
    Also, is it easy to link everything up? For instance, will any DAC work with this particular kit.

  2. #2
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    Cool

    Hi RGbee;

    You are correct. That kit contains the scanners, the amps, and the power supply you need to run them. If you've already got a laser, then all you need is a controller (a DAC) and you're all set. I've got a set of those scanners that I'm reviewing right now. So far they look really nice - better than any other 20K scanner I've played with. They certainly give you a lot of performance for the money!

    And yes, *any* controller / software combination will work. You could go with Mamba Black and the Easylase USB DAC, or the Pangolin LA Freak package with the FlashBack 3 DAC, or even go open source with a modified sound card and some free software (such as LaserBoy and Spaghetti). Search through the forums here and you'll find numerous posts on all three. (My personal favorite is the Pangolin LA Freak kit; it's just $500 and gives you an entire software suite, including a live player, a 3D frame editor, a laser text editor, an abstract generator, a show editor, and lots of frames to play with, along with Pangolin's near-bullet-proof FB3 controller.)

    There's plenty of assistance available here on PL to show you how to wire everything up. You'll probably need an enclosure to house everything, and you may need a hefty piece of aluminum plate to mount everything on, but as far as components go, you've got all the electronics that you'll need. (Well, except for the DAC.)

    Note that the ScanPro 20 galvos used to come with an optional DMX pattern board. Ask Dave or Aijii at LaserShowParts.com if they still include those... If so, you can hook that up to your scanners and use it to create basic patterns. It's not as nice as a full-blown software and controller package, but it will get you started with simple fans, beams, and tunnels while you decide which software and controller you want to buy.

    Adam

  3. #3
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    Default

    I brought the Scanpro20's and i had them up an running in 5mins with a 50mw 532nm eBay Laser. (and elastic bands :P )

    Here's a quick video of the results

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9VY2lAV6BMk

  4. #4
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    welcome and i have decided to go with the FB3 board from pangolin! it seems like the best bang for the buck!!

    keep us posted on the build and post some pictures of the process
    -Josh

  5. #5
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    Default re: Newbie Building a projector from scatch

    Thanks Adam,
    I've had another look on the Lasershowparts website, and it looks like the kit includes the DMX program board.

    Although the DMX board comes with a plethora of onboard pre-programmed effects, there's also ILDA in & out. Don't suppose you know whether it's possible to connect kit to both a DMX controller and an ILDA source so that it's possible to switch between ILDA & DMX.
    many thanks
    Adrian

  6. #6
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    Haven't tried it as don't have the means to so can't give a definite answer, but it should be possible. My laser has both ILDA and DMX control:

    On mine the input is switched using buttons and the LCD display but it maybe a simple switch would suffice in a different set up.



    If you're asking is it possible to have both connected simoultaneously, I don't see why not in principle as only one would be active at anyone time, the one the laser was switched to, but I'm at a bit of a loss to know why you'd want to use DMX along with ILDA. ILDA gives far more precise control and access to effects that aren't pre-programmed.

    Anything you can do in DMX, you can do in ILDA with bells on! ILDA will do all the pre-programmed effects and literally thousands more.

    BTW get the Pangolin kit Adam recommended, its the dogs. Most would agree it blows any other software out of the water.

  7. #7
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    Smile

    Several people here have built projectors that have both the DMX control board that comes with the ScanPro20's as well as a standard 25-pin ILDA port for receiving signals from an external controller.

    The easiest thing to do is install a 25-pin A/B switch. However, if you want to get fancy, you can wire something more elaborate inside your projector. But either way, so long as both inputs aren't trying to control the projector at the same time, you'll be OK.

    Adam

  8. #8
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    Ah, I see.
    So do you know if it's possible to have an audio signal source trigger effects through ILDA?

  9. #9
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    The ILDA connector passed raw position and color signals and a few other things. It has no notion of audio signals. There are some extra lines that you could use to pass some custom signals but you would have to have custom hardware on both sides of the cable. So, in short, the answer is no. But, you can have an audio source trigger your software (on host computer or DAC) that sends the laser data to your scanner over ILDA.

  10. #10
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    Most people using ILDA control pre-design shows to match the music they're playing. You can then play back the music from the PC outputting it to an amp and speakers whilst the Software plays your show sync'ed alongside from the laser.

    Take a look at the SELEM and UK laser Meet videos to see what I mean.

    Also, this video at 1 min 3 secs with the fan synced to the notes illustrates the co-ordination you can bring into a show as well (this was DMX though not ILDA):

    http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=bgELH7...eature=related

    Alternatively, you could design a show or series of shows and just play these irrespective of the music.

    Alternatively you could use something like Live Pro, to control the laser in real time although I'm not sure LP is included with the FB package.

    TBH, sound to light conversion is rarely very good anyway.

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