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Your Lighting Rig

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by ckdhaven, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. ckdhaven


    Jul 19, 2012
    Cedar Rapids IA
    I wasn't sure where to post this thread..

    As our band continues to grow and the establishments we play have absolutely no gear.. We are finding that it's time for a lighting rig...

    What would you recommend for a 4pc cover band?
  2. jad


    Aug 29, 2002
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Since you didn't mention budget, it's hard to tell you what to buy, but I'll tell you what I did. LED has big advantages in terms of portability and current draw, so lots of people are upgrading to it. I took advantage of an upgrader and traded an unused bass cab for a couple of old school PAR 38 t-bars with tripods and a non-DMX controller. I added a couple of LED disco lights to either accent the stage lighting or point toward the dance floor as needed. Works great for small clubs.
  3. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    LED ! The Chauvet 4 LED thin cans on a bar incl stand and carry bag at 399 is great. A pair of thise and you can light any stage. Decent color throw. Packs down small and sets up quickly.
    They are very bright and need to be up high, pointing down if they are close in or dimmed down.

    All the major vendors sell that setup. AMS, MF, Amazon, etc...

    If you are compelled to go full on light show, then adding various effect lighting behind the band is kinda trad. Personally I say color wash from the front and call it good... The current draw thing is important, lighting can suck down enormous amounts of power. The LEDs use virtually nothing and you can run them off the same circuits that power the stage ...
  4. modulusman

    modulusman Inactive

    Jan 18, 2004
    My band uses 8 American DJ LED par 64s. We have them mounted on two T bar stands. No controller just use the automatic color fade/change feature.
  5. More info would help... Orpix
  6. ckdhaven


    Jul 19, 2012
    Cedar Rapids IA
    Well... more info?? HMMM... We would like for the system to be run at the soundboard with one of our techs.

    Don't some of these run to FOH through an XLR?

    Doesn't need to be really fancy and wash lights are fine.. LEDs seem to be the way to go because of electrical requirements..

    The budget would be less than $1000.00 and would like to keep it around $750.00..
  7. Hactar


    Sep 25, 2011
    Boulder, CO
    If you need more complex control of the lighting than automatic color cycle, you can get a simple 4 or 8 channel DMX controller that can live at FOH. Typically, it will use 3 pin DMX (AKA 3 pin XLR), and thus you can use an empty snake channel to send it to stage. If you've got 5 pin DMX connectors, you can get adapters or run another cable.
  8. We just switched to LED lighting about 6 months ago. Jeez, those run sooo much cooler, as opposed to standing under at least a dozen par 64 & 72's all night. They're a lot less troublesome, too.
  9. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
  10. I read the thread title as "lightning rig," and got wayyyyy too excited :/
  11. I'll start with the basics.

    1-What are you lighting... do you have a backdrop? There are lowcost methods to do a very nice backdrop... it's easier to light an object than dark air.

    2-Pix... tough to make the recommendation without seeing what exactly you look like now.


    I have owned multiple systems.

    OVERALL... after doing this sssssoooooo long, I'd start with planning transportation. Many of the lighting hassles are with cumbersome odd shape sizes... they fall stuff breaks.
  12. FYI - DMX and XLR are two completely different cable types. DMX has a high impedance level, in which helps it a) carry the Digital Signal properly, b) higher resistance to ground noise, and cross talk across longer distances.

    yes you can use regular XLR, but usually the number one problem with DMX related issues starts with the cables!

    the only thing i can really suggest with LED lighting is not to cheap out for the sake of cheaping out. if you can afford it i suggest doing it...
  13. Hactar


    Sep 25, 2011
    Boulder, CO
    I guess my post was misleading. It is possible to run DMX over a stage snake, but it is not recommended. True DMX512 lines are specified to have a nominal impedance of 120 ohms, IIRC, and thus audio cables are not ideal. Also, ethernet cable is usable, and can be used to make DMX cables.
  14. sorry man i wasn't having a crack. as a lighting designer/technician, i like to ensure that people use the appropriate cabling and as to why.
  15. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    LED for sure
    Get a couple good RGBA (Red, Green, Blue, Amber)
    The A gives you more "Warm" light choices.

    I'd start small and add on as you go. The pricing is falling fast as everybody is switching over.

    Good advice above that you need a backdrop. And they make Multicolor LED back drop curtains which can replace back washes
  16. F-Clef-Jef


    Nov 13, 2006
    Neenah, WI
    ya, I've been running my DMX LED system with only XLR cables for years, never had an issue. But, I'm not running a large lighting system (16 - 20 fixtures usually), or any real big distances (probably 40 feet max) I'm guessing it only becomes an issue with longer cable runs.

    Or, I'm just lucky! :D
  17. gareth dunster

    gareth dunster

    Dec 8, 2009
    We use Chinese thin par cans which cost around 60 USfrom alibaba. No problems with them. They come with short dmx cables for daisy chaining. Never had any problems with using xlr for the main controller cable. We use DMXIS from enttec to control it with the laptop. It's incredibly easy to use and reliable to set up scenes and can be synced up with daws etc. definitely recommend this software , the in built oscillator can do some very cool stuff.
  18. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Inactive

    Feb 21, 2010
    St. Louis
    I got enough crap to set up. We have a truss and two stands and 8 lights with assorted gels plus some sort of big strobe looking thing that shoots dots all over. We only ever use the one bar, one stand and 4 lights. Even that is rare. Most places we play have lights anyway.
  19. Stone Soup

    Stone Soup

    Dec 3, 2012
    I have 16 par 38 cans, two double T stands, two dimmer packs, and a 16 channel foot controller. I've been using only half of the setup and I only use it when I have to. I'm glad I have the lights, but I dislike the heat from them and setting them up. I'd like to have LED cans, but it has to wait.
  20. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    We always rent lights. They always come with a controller.

    One time we got it and the controller didn't seem to work that well. The lights weren't reacting to the music. Then in between two sets our guitarist was quietly showing a fan how to play a song. And the lights worked really well. Turns out this model just couldn't handle the "wall of noise".
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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