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Helix to control DMX lighting


kts222555111000
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Hello all

Just a quick question regarding using Helix to control DMX lights with midi.

Firstly is it possible in general, and secondly is it possible that every time I select a Snapshot a midi message could be sent that would select a specific lighting pattern or combination? I don't really want to control the lights via the footswitches in Stomp mode (although that could work). It would be better to map the changes to switches that I already press i.e. the Snapshot changes.

Any help or advice gratefully received.

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It's possible to control DMX lights with MIDI, but you need some hardware and/or software set up to do it.

 

There are probably hardware lighting consoles that respond to MIDI, but I'm not familiar with them. I have used two different systems involving a computer though:

 

1) DMXIS, made by ENTTEC. It's simple and easy, and lets you set up scenes of lights per MIDI notes. It comes with a USB to DMX converter, and the software can even run inside a plugin in a DAW and act like a software synthesizer. I used this to create automated lights for backing tracks with a solo show.

2) QLC+ software, an open-source lighting console. This is much more complex and comprehensive, and you have to manually program most of the ways that the lights interpret the MIDI data. So it's more powerful, but more complex.

 

If it were me, since I already own the pieces, I'd use DMXIS and a computer.

 

As for sending MIDI messages from the Helix, I have not done this with Snapshots, but I believe you'd do it using "instants" in the Command Center. It may be that the Helix won't send Note Ons, but only CC values; I'm not certain though.

 

EDIT: look in the Helix version 2.0 manual under Command Center, and also try a Ctrl-F / Command-F search within the PDF for the word "instant" to find more info about this.

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I am using helix connected to an American dj dmx operator via midi to control lighting scenes with midi notes sent in snapshot mode. I have a different scene for each snapshot. For example, rhythm sound triggers red, clean triggers blue, lead is yellow, etc. it works great. I tried with stomp mode before v 2.0 but had problems. My process was as follows:

 

1. Set up the scenes on dmx operator.

2. Figure out the midi notes required to trigger the scene.

3. Set up the snapshots for the sounds I wanted.

4. Have the snapshot send the correct midi note.

 

Once I had it working I could use the preset as a base, copy it, and set up another preset with different scenes by changing which midi notes were sent. I remember it was a little tricky but don't remember exactly what the issues were since it was months ago. If that is your plan, it is entirely possible.

 

Rock on!

Johnny

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I am using helix connected to an American dj dmx operator via midi to control lighting scenes with midi notes sent in snapshot mode. I have a different scene for each snapshot. For example, rhythm sound triggers red, clean triggers blue, lead is yellow, etc. it works great. I tried with stomp mode before v 2.0 but had problems. My process was as follows:

 

1. Set up the scenes on dmx operator.

2. Figure out the midi notes required to trigger the scene.

3. Set up the snapshots for the sounds I wanted.

4. Have the snapshot send the correct midi note.

 

Once I had it working I could use the preset as a base, copy it, and set up another preset with different scenes by changing which midi notes were sent. I remember it was a little tricky but don't remember exactly what the issues were since it was months ago. If that is your plan, it is entirely possible.

 

Rock on!

Johnny

 

Thanks to all who've commented but this is how I was hoping to proceed. Our band has access to lights and a DMX controller board so the setting up of the scenes is taken care of (when I get my hands on them). As mdmayfield suggested I have read the section Snapshots>Command Centre in the manual and (if I read it correctly) it seems possible to send midi note on messages with the change of a snapshot as you say. I'm sure there will initially be a bit of trial and error but at least I know it is all possible.

Thanks

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Just as an update if anyone is curious (whilst I am still waiting to try it out with actual lights) I have been able to send midi note on messages to a midi keyboard so it will be easy to send them to the DMX controller. You have to use Command Centre but the only way to send note on messages is with the footswitches, not the instants. It's no problem though as you just save the footswitch in an "on" state and everytime you select that snapshot it will send the note on message. Just save the relevant note on message with each snapshot and you're good to go. Every snapshot can have it's own lighting scene. Awesome :)

 

Thanks again.

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  • 1 month later...

Can I get a little help with how to do this? I have a Chauvet Obey 40, it's got a midi in port. I'm assuming I run the midi cable from the "out/through" port on the helix. I can't seem to get anything to trigger. For example, the DMX controller's manual states that blackout is assigned to midi note 126. So I go to command center, select a footswitch, and scroll to the midi section. I've tried assigning "CC#" to 126, nothing. I've tried assigning "value" as 126. Nothing. I admittedly don't know what the hell I'm doing with midi. Is there some sort of global setting I need to change? I just want to be able to trigger a few things with footswitches.

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  • 1 year later...

 

On 10/16/2016 at 5:15 AM, kts222555111000 said:

Just as an update if anyone is curious (whilst I am still waiting to try it out with actual lights) I have been able to send midi note on messages to a midi keyboard so it will be easy to send them to the DMX controller. You have to use Command Centre but the only way to send note on messages is with the footswitches, not the instants. It's no problem though as you just save the footswitch in an "on" state and everytime you select that snapshot it will send the note on message. Just save the relevant note on message with each snapshot and you're good to go. Every snapshot can have it's own lighting scene. Awesome :)

 

Thanks again.

I thought I had this working a while ago. I have tried again today and seem to be failing.

 

Tones are set up on Helix. Scenes are set up on DMX controller.

 

Midi cable connected. In Command Center, attempting to send "midi note on". Doesn't seem to be doing anything and I'm not sure why.

 

kts222555111000 what do you mean by saving footswitch in on position?

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