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Author Topic: New user... Is it gonna bug me!  (Read 2341 times)

November 29, 2016, 03:34:43 AM
Read 2341 times

SiWatts69

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OK, so my Cuety arrived earlier today and I've spent around 5 hours playing around, including making custom profiles for my Chauvet COREbar4's and ADJ On-X.

Early impressions are good. The movement and colour fx generators seem very clever and I've had not issue getting my test light to function.

BUT, it is not without some significant niggles.

Colour faders:
Why does the AMBER and WHITE fader show, and be active within control of profiles which only have RGB channels?
Why does the AMBERfader show, and be active within control of profiles which only have RGBW channels?

Custom/Macro control channels:
Why do fixtures with more than 2 custom or macro control channels end up without those controls and, perhaps more importantly, why do the custom channel strips not show the appropriate label assigned to the channel in the builder? Custom1 and Custom2 tell me nothing

iPad:
Why no control to prevent lock screen from activating when the app is running? Not sure I'd have the patience to keep pressing the start button and logging in each time I want to change something, either in the remote app or the control app. My Line6 Stagescape mixer ipad app has this and it is a lifesaver.

Sub-fixtures and no game in Cuety:
This is perhaps my biggest niggle as I've only discovered this limitation after purchasing and trying to play with it.

My lighting rig consists of:
4x Chauvet COREbar4
2x ADJ Dotz bar 1.4
2x ADJ Inno Pocket Spot Twins
2x ADJ Inno Pocket Wash
2x ADJ Inno Pocket Roll
2x ADJ On-X
2x ADJ Gobo Projector LED (no DMX)

I play in a band and additionally hire out me, the sound rig and the light rig to other bands.
I have been searching for a control system that would give me the control I'm after. I want to be able to control my/our lights on-stage whilst we're playing, making simple scene changes with a single button press between songs. Being able to blackout the whole rig was essential.
Additionally though, I wanted to be able to do the same, but from out front in the audience, wirelessly from the iPad, when I'm out on a hire job.
Theoretically, Cuety was the only modestly priced solution I've found which fits the bill.

So, for my experimentation, I rigged up one of my Inno Pocket Wash fixtures but was surprised when I couldn't patch it with the default 19 channel mode. The only modes offered were 9 and 11. Coming on here, I spotted the thread about subfixtures and realised that in the 19 and 21 channel mode profiles, a pocket wash has TWO banks of colour (4 LED's in 2 pairs). However, the 11 and 9 channel modes don't give access to "shows" or sound active operation. Bugger!

Having looked through the profiles for my inno pocket spot twins, the On-X, the chauvet COREbar4's and the Dotz1.4, there are none that can be run on the Cuety in their full channel modes. The dotz and corebars because they each have 4 colour pods, the on-x because they have 2 moving heads each with 4 LED's so effectively 2 colour pods, and the pocket spot twins because they have two independent moving heads, gobos and all the gubbins. Indeed the ONLY one of my fixtures that will work "out of the box" is the inno pocket roll... and even that has an issue because the profile uses three custom/macro controls.

To say I was a little disappointed was an understatement.

HOWEVER, I may be able to dream up workarounds and quite relish the idea of doing so.

Using the vBuilder, I created modified profiles for the Dotz1.4 and the COREbar's.
I split the control channels out and made a "mode" which contains only channels 1-3 (for the COREbar4's) and 13-17 (for the Dotz1.4. In addition, I added Pod1, Pod2, Pod3 and Pod4 "modes" which contain only simple RGB
The downside is that I then use up 5 "fixtures" in the app, 1 for te control channels and 1 for each of the four colour pods .... but the outcome is pretty much as I anticipated: Independent control of the four heads with full access to the control channels.

Where it looks like it will get tricky is doing similar for the inno pocket spot twins and the inno pocket wash.
Haven't tried for the spots yet, but I created a new 19 channel pocket wash profile as follows:
Control channels (1,2,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19) as a "Controls" mode
Colour Pod RGBA channel (3,4,5,6)
When patching the fixture, it takes up 3 fixture slots and needs to be addressed in a way which Cuety grumbles about:
Patch the control mode to (for example) channel 1
Patch a colour pod mode to channel 3
Patch a colour pod mode to channel 7
Cuety alerts that fixture addresses are overlapping as it sees the control fixture as occupying 1-19
BUT, it works a treat

Still, it isn't perfect as there are DMX functions I'd like to be able to access but they exist on multiple "Control" or "Macro" channels and as Cuety limits us to two, I can't get to them.
If I were making suggestions for improvement, I'd say that Cuty should display "empty" fader channel strips and that the channel strips should simply label themselves according to the profile, rather than always having Custom1 and 2 at the far right, with unused fader channels for weird stuff like Iris etc permanently in the slots. Killing off those unused faders allows the extra custom channels to come into view.

Next time I get chance, I'll be seeing how far I can get with a custom profile for my inno pocket spot twins, and I *may* have a play with the Inno Pocket Roll profile to see if I can get access to the 3rd custom/macro  channel.

Hopefully, the On-X will be fairly simple to map in the "split" method I've used for the wash too.

It perhaps sound like I'm on a downer about my Cuety purchase, but I'm not. I still reckon it's going to meet my needs more closely than anything else I've seen... I'm just going to need to think outside the box to make it do so and hopefully keep the operation within the realms of "simple".

Possible consideration for future versions:
It would be awesome to be able to hook up a simple footswitch, with some pre-programmed options built in. For example, a simple fade to blackout over 3-5 seconds. A second press to bring the lights back on full. I'm thinking here about that time period when a band finishes a song.... fade to blackout, a few seconds dark, then lights back on full ready for the start of the next song. If a second footswitch could be used to move forward between scenes, that would be even better.
Even if there were a simple way to have the above as an onscreen option, ie a simple "master dimmer", it would help. If there is, I'd love to hear how to set up such a scene!




November 29, 2016, 09:28:44 AM
Reply #1

Michael Chiou

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Hello @SiWatts6g

I am glad you like your Cuety, and I hope we can figure out some of the issues that you mentioned.

Quote
Colour faders:
Why does the AMBER and WHITE fader show, and be active within control of profiles which only have RGB channels?
Why does the AMBERfader show, and be active within control of profiles which only have RGBW channels?

That does sounds a bit strange, so maybe you could forward us your personality file so we can take a look.

Quote
Custom/Macro control channels:
Why do fixtures with more than 2 custom or macro control channels end up without those controls and, perhaps more importantly, why do the custom channel strips not show the appropriate label assigned to the channel in the builder? Custom1 and Custom2 tell me nothing

Macros are not supported in Cuety, but you can have up to two custom faders that represent the two channels you want.

Quote
iPad:
Why no control to prevent lock screen from activating when the app is running? Not sure I'd have the patience to keep pressing the start button and logging in each time I want to change something, either in the remote app or the control app. My Line6 Stagescape mixer ipad app has this and it is a lifesaver.

This sounds like a cool feature, thank you for the recommendation, we are going to add it to the whish-list.

Quote
Sub-fixtures and no game in Cuety:
This is perhaps my biggest niggle as I've only discovered this limitation after purchasing and trying to play with it.

Cuety does not support sub-fixture. The idea behind Cuety is an entry level lighting control system, for more demanding designs we have  our more professional line of products. That we can tell you more about it if you are interested.

Quote
It would be awesome to be able to hook up a simple footswitch, with some pre-programmed options built in. For example, a simple fade to blackout over 3-5 seconds. A second press to bring the lights back on full. I'm thinking here about that time period when a band finishes a song.... fade to blackout, a few seconds dark, then lights back on full ready for the start of the next song. If a second footswitch could be used to move forward between scenes, that would be even better.

Lastly, there are some ways you can connect foot switches to your Cuety but that depends on which LPU you have. For LPU2 you can use a network based foot switch that can send OSC or UDP, or a foot switch with midi out put that you can then convert to OSC or UDP again. Unfortunately for LPU1 this is not supported.

For any further information don't hesitate to contact us, we would very much like to help you get your Cuety all setup!  :)

Best regards,

Michael.
Michael Chiou
Visual Productions BV

November 29, 2016, 02:44:16 PM
Reply #2

SiWatts69

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Thanks for the reply Michael.

That does sounds a bit strange, so maybe you could forward us your personality file so we can take a look.
You will not need my custom personalities, the behaviour is there in the factory loaded profiles.
Take for example, ADJ Dotz Bar 1.4 and pick 3 channel mode (RGB)
Red, Green,Blue, Amber and White all have "active" faders.. Seems off that the Amber and White faders would have active controls.

Macros are not supported in Cuety, but you can have up to two custom faders that represent the two channels you want.
I may be using incorrect termininolgy in usage of "Macro".. In most of my dmx personality traits, features like "Shows" are most commonly details as Show/Macro. Ultimately, it a range of DMX values that triggers a particular show on the fixture or drops it into sound active, for example. As such, the Cuety doesn't need to support macros, it just needs to have a fader that I can set within the range of values I need to activate the macro built in to the fixture. Essentially, it's just a custom fader I guess.

Cuety does not support sub-fixture. The idea behind Cuety is an entry level lighting control system, for more demanding designs we have  our more professional line of products. That we can tell you more about it if you are interested.
Yes, I understand. Sub-fixtures means multiple groups of RGB or pan/tilt groups.
I'm assuming that my workaround that I had working on the inno pocket wash (to get access to its full 19 channels) won't cause any problems that you are aware of?

BUT, "entry level" is more likely to include fixtures like my COREbar4 and Dotz1.4, which are both sub-fixture units as soon as you want individual control over each colour pod / head. I'd say entry level users are far more likely to pick fixtures of this nature, start out with the supplied foot controllers, then enter into the world of DMX as their next step. Similarly, inno pocket spot twins... very popular with small DJ's and bands but unlikely to be used by pro lighting outfits.
Both the COREbar4 and Dotz fixtures have simple 3 channel mode DMX personalities so can be dropped in to the cuety easily, but we're then left with all four pods/heads behaving identically which kind of defeats the object of having these great all in one fixtures.
BUT the workaround I'm experimenting with seems to work without issue and doesn't have cuety grumbling about overlapping addresses.
The Dotz1.4 I'll most likely run in 12 channel mode as I have no need for the control channel elements, load it into cuety as 4 individual RGB profiles.
The COREbar4's are a little more awkward as there is only a 3 channel and a 15 channel mode. To have control over the pods/heads individually, you have to use the dimmer and strobe speed channel (2 & 3) else the RGB channels do nothing. Shame, but that's more of a limitation in the fixture than in Cuety. I created the customised version of the 15 channel mode; one 3 channel "fixture" for the 3 control channels and then the four 3 channel RGB fixtures. Just have to remember to ensure that I set the dimmer and strobe speed.

As an entry level consumer... I want simple control over a number of (relatively) simple fixtures BUT I want sufficient control to make the effort and expense worthwhile.
I'm not planning to program massive light shows.
I just want a variety of scenes, set a scene off at the start of a song, fade to blackout at the end, then have full on again within a few seconds ready to set off the same or an alternative scene for the next song. I'm not chasing control during a song... I'm too busy playing!
All my lights are in pairs but I don't want all of them on together.
Dotz1.4 forward facing colour change wash (typically going to be blue hues based wash)
1 pair COREbar4's back facing wash (matched to the Dotz above)
2nd pair COREbar4's back facing BLUE/WHITE wash aimed strategically
The effect lights, Inno Pocket Spot twins, Inno Pocket Rolls and On-X are then forward facing from mid/back of stage but I'd typically only be wanting to run 2 of the pairs at any given time.

I can do all the above on-stage with the standard controllers I have already, though the effect lights are run master slave via an IR remote which gets a bit messy!
I want Cuety to enable me to control it all off-stage when I'm hiring out my pa rig which I can't do with what I already had and give me the increased control on-stage to be able to fade out fade in with a single action.

Lastly, there are some ways you can connect foot switches to your Cuety but that depends on which LPU you have. For LPU2 you can use a network based foot switch that can send OSC or UDP, or a foot switch with midi out put that you can then convert to OSC or UDP again. Unfortunately for LPU1 this is not supported.
Looks like I'm out of luck on this one then! The delivery I took was an LPU1 and I don't plan to buy another controller for some time.
For any further information don't hesitate to contact us, we would very much like to help you get your Cuety all setup!  :)

Thanks. I don't want you to think I'm on a downer or gumbling, and if what I've said comes across as grumbling then sorry... not intended. I'm still finding my feet with it, I haven't had chance to do a full setup of all the fixtures to try everything out and experiment properly.
I also realise that what I want doesn't fit the model that most lighting controllers are designed for.
I looked at DMXIS but despite *nearly* getting it decided that needing to lug a laptop round was a step too far... BUT it does win in being able to deal with those pesky subfixture fixtures and has an FX generator that can span the subfixtures. It also won on having the option for a footswitch.
I looked at the ADJ MyDMX but really struggled with the APP... but at least their app would allow you to play about with it BEFORE buying the hardware (ie the app will run without hardware attached)
Ultimately though I settled on Cuety, primarily because it is iPad based and I'm already running my sound console on the ipad,.. one less device. It connects via *normal* WiFI, not some proprietary stuff so any router will do... and I already have the apple airport express. I just need to get a small network switch in order to hook up both the mixer desk and the LPU1 to the same airport express but I'll do so when I'm closer to being ready to take it out into a live setting!
So in the pros and cons list, Cuety won...
I just need to work on my workarounds for the cons!

November 30, 2016, 02:33:27 AM
Reply #3

SiWatts69

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Well, I've now got the following "custom profiles" that enable me to load the following fixtures with full access to sub-fixture type channels:

All examples shown based on a fixture start address of 1 (for simplicity)
Chauvet COREbar4 15ch mode: Uses FIVE of your 64 fixture slots.
Easy one this.
Simple 3 channel mode for the 3 controller channels; Programs [custom] ch1, Dimmer [dimmer] ch2, Speed [custom] ch3
Simple 3 channel mode for a head/pod; Colour [rgb]
Patch the control mode "fixture" to DMX address 1
Patch 4 head/pod mode "fixtures" to DMX address 4, 7, 10 and 13

ADJ Dotz Bar 1.4 12ch mode: Uses FOUR of your 64 fixture slots.
Even easier for this one
Patch four simple RGB 3ch generic profiles at addresses 1, 4, 7 and 10

It's gets a little trickier now...
ADJ Inno Pocket Wash 19ch mode; Uses THREE of your 64 fixture slots.
19 channel mode for the Pan/Tilt and 9 controller channels; Pan [position] ch1, Tile [position] ch2, Shutter [shutter] ch11, Dimmer [dimmer] ch12, Colour Speed [custom] ch14, Pan Tilt Macro [custom] ch15, Speed [position] ch17, Special [custom] ch18, Dimmer Curve [custom] ch19
4 channel colour head mode: Colour RGBW [colour] ch1
Patch the control "fixture" to dmx channel 1
Patch TWO colour "fixtures" to DMX channels 3 and 7
Cuety will turn the dmx addresses red to denote that they overlap and existing fixture BUT it works anyway

For the above, I started with the Visual Productions library copy of the inno pocket wash and modified it. I completely removed channels 13 and  16 as I on't need them and arranged the custom faders so that Special (ch18) and Speed (ch17) were the first of the custom faders, thus occupying Custom1 and Custom2 in Cuety

ADJ Inno Pocket Roll:
Visual Productions library profile is good to go apart from one aspect:
Channel 2 has been assigned to TILT but as this is a barrel scanner, it doesn't have a tilt function.
I've updated the library profile as a custom profile, changing ch2 to prism type and setting CW and CCW rotation value ranges: The control now appears on a fader and is not affected by Pan/Tilt FX

ADJ On-X; Uses THREE of your 64 fixture slots.
I figured this was going to create headaches as there was no library profile but it was remarkably simple. DMX tables show 2, 9, 11, 12, 16 and 18 channel modes.
I opted to build a custom 16 channel set.
Difficulty with this light and most controllers is that it has two independent tilt heads, each head with standalone red, green blue and white leds, but only a single master dimmer! I tried controlling this fixture with an ADJ NE-1 and it failed miserably!
As with the pocket wash, you can't create a single 16 channel profile, indeed anything except the 2 channel mode would be impossible as a single fixture.
Create 3 fixtures:
A head 1 fixture; Tilt [position] ch1, Colours [colour mix RGBW] {red ch3, green ch4, blue ch5, white ch6}
A head 2 fixture; Tilt [position] ch1, Colours [colour mix RGBW] {red ch6, green ch7, blue ch8, white ch9}
A controls fixture; Shows [custom] ch1, Show Speed [custom] ch2, Shutter [shutter] ch3, Dimmer [dimmer] ch4, Dimmer Mode [custom] ch5, Reset [reset] ch6 (set values)
In cuety;
Patch a head 1 "fixture" to dmx channel 1
Patch a head 2 "fixture" to dmx channel 2
Patch the control "fixture" to dmx channel 11
Cuety will turn the dmx address for head 2 red to denote that it overlaps the existing head 1 fixture BUT it works anyway

The only one of my fixtures I've got left to do are the inno pocket spot twins. By far the most complex of my lights but my success with the above is spurring me on and I'm pretty certain I'll get it nailed!

Then begins the task of programming some scenes and trying to come up with a way to achieve my one press fade to blackout and one press lights on!

Oh, and to answer my own initial question... It's not bugging me yet ;-)
Very clever piece of kit and extremely tolerant of hacks ;-)

November 30, 2016, 09:26:04 AM
Reply #4

Zoë Castle

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Hello SiWatts

I have very much enjoyed reading your analytical Cuety journey!

The processes you have gone through and the questions you have asked yourself in order to push an 'entry level style controller to professional level performance" - well it has been good to share this experience with you and a real pleasure to read "It's not bugging me yet ;-)"

Thank you and we all hope you continue to enjoy using Cuety!

Have a great day, greetings Zoë
Zoë Castle
Sales Manager
Visual Productions BV

November 30, 2016, 03:44:59 PM
Reply #5

SiWatts69

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Hello SiWatts

I have very much enjoyed reading your analytical Cuety journey!

The processes you have gone through and the questions you have asked yourself in order to push an 'entry level style controller to professional level performance" - well it has been good to share this experience with you and a real pleasure to read "It's not bugging me yet ;-)"

Thank you and we all hope you continue to enjoy using Cuety!

Have a great day, greetings Zoë

Many thanks for your kind of comments.

I'm posting it as I go simply because if even just one other new Cuety user stumbles across it and can gain some real-world pointers that assist them in getting theirs up and running, my efforts haven't been in vein.

I stumbled on the idea of posting the simpler 3 channel mode fixtures for my Dotz1.4 because it was mentioned (by Michael IIRC) as a possible solution for someone else with a similar fixture. That one simple suggestion opened up the whole raft of possibilities that I'm exploring to solve my specific problems... Sharing solutions gives others opportunity to get hints.

The instructional videos are great, but they only (quite understandably) deal with basics. I did watch them specifically so I could find my way round the app and they certainly helped.

November 30, 2016, 11:45:51 PM
Reply #6

Zoë Castle

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 :) Thank you

Greetings Zoë
Zoë Castle
Sales Manager
Visual Productions BV

 

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