Dmx channels/ controller

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John_PJohn_P Frets: 1603
Imnlooking to add a dmx controlller to make my lights a bit less like a random disco.    Currently I have a pair of gigabar spots (1,3,7,12,16 channels),  a pair of led power bar washes (2,3,4,7,14channels) and a few led pats with who knows what channels.    
I’ll be adding some more effect types this summer - maybe a pair of adj mini lasers and some moonflowers or moving heads.  

So I’m not fussed about fancy control - just a few Chase and sound to light programs but am I right in thinking a 4 channel controller would work with 3 channel lights?  I just wouldn’t have anything of on the 4th for that light?
 or do I need to step up to a 7 channel controller?  

A simple box probably suits me better than taking laptop to gigs but if there is an easy way to plug in an iPad that might work - I probably want to start simple though and just have a box to turn stuff on and off and sync them up if the channel counts work.     

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  • ESBlondeESBlonde Frets: 2372
    DMX has a potential of 512 channels. Each lamp/device will have a starting channel set (often editable).
    So lets assume lamp A starts at Channel 1 and requires 4 channels to control its functions. So lamp B might start at channel 5 and requires 8 channels to control its fancy functions. Lamp C is similar to lamp A and can share the same 4 chanels and replicate the same colours/ movements etc.

    So depending on how you set the start address on each device and how you program the DMX sending controller is down to your choices. You can end up with multiple lamps doing different things in sync for a given song or scene.
     As a default most lamp units start at address 1 (or zero).
    Try to get the manuals for each device you want to control and then edit your controller to do amaxing things.
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  • John_PJohn_P Frets: 1603
    Thanks for that.   Very clear explanation.  I’m going to order something like a Chauvet Obey 4 - until I upgrade to fancier lights that should let me control the basics and be easy to operate on stage.      Once I’m more confident I’ll think about upgrading but for the lights I have and plan to add it should do the job.  
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  • David5150David5150 Frets: 115

    We take a lot of lights to our gigs - tried a DMX desk, then the American DJ dongle/laptop software. Found both a massive pain in the rear to programme (more my limits than the hardware)

    What we do now is use a few remote controlled sockets to turn certain groups of 'effects' lights on and off in the show, as well as a foot pedal to control the LED par bars and striplights we use. May be an idea

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  • RolandRoland Frets: 2020
    DMXIS is easier to program, but you do need a Windows pc or tablet to run it.
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