Survey on Generic Fixture Automation
Posted 22 October 2011 - 12:11 PM
To do some further research into this market I have created a short survey; I know we get a lot of these on here but if you could take the time to fill it out it would be much appreciated. Should only take a few minutes.
Survey can be found here http://freeonlinesur...hucg38p6t977663
Any information provided here will be used purely for educational purposes. Would also appreciate any additional comments on this area and/or if you wish to be cited by PM or reply to this thread.
Posted 22 October 2011 - 01:03 PM
Comments are a bit random but when you ask how much we'd spend, we all know automation is hugely expensive - even the chinese can give you very much for £500 - so what kind of automation would be less than £100 - it's a silly figure.
You ask about accuracy - but that depends on the device doesn't it? If the adjustment, done manually, needs finesse, then so will the automation - if you stick a motor on a focus screw, you can have accuracy very simply - but it may take time to get there.
Quantity discount on the order - this is normal. Buy 20 and they're cheaper than 2 - so the question makes no sense.
Would you consider adding automation devices to an existing rig as an alternative to buying automated fixture - how much would an automated fresnel actually cost extra to the cost of the lantern? Any device flexible enough to cope with the huge range of kit out there is not going to be cheap. Considering the engineering problems in just doing pan and tilt, a mover with a fresnel lens could be cheaper, and it would have other features too - Just thinking about the common kit in use - how would you convert them to have pan and tilt? Adding focus and barn doors that have four flaps and rotate is a major engineering challenge.
I see where you are going with:
Health and safety considerations with focusing at height (I.e. an education environment)
but surely the problem is budget - fitting ten lanterns with remote control would be enormous, cost wise. We've had pole operation on Strand lighting for 30+ years, and the extra cost has always been really high - mainly economies of scale - sales just being too low. Schools could have bought pole op is available already, but nobody chooses it.
If I needed a light that had extra features, I'd just buy one off the shelf. Spending umpteen times what a used bit of kit is worth on motorising it seems pointless.
I suspect you've had a great idea that just isn't practical to market. If it was, people would be doing it already. Quite a few common generic bits of kit have been motorised over the years, including par cans - but none caught on.
As a dragons den proposal, they'd be all out!
Posted 22 October 2011 - 01:44 PM
Just to add to what Paul says and the only thing most people would stick on generics are scrollers and maybe thing like the Apollo gobo rotator for the S4 which is a rather nifty piece of kit.
The above aren't to ease focusing, they are just more toys for the LD to play with.
Professional companies such as ETC have tried this and come up with things like the Revolution which is basically a S4 on a moving head chassis with a modified Wybron scroller on the front. And it is quite, quite horrid and I know a lot of people (myself included) who give them a wide berth.
The only thing I have ever really endorsed is the Studio Due CS4 - which is a bunch of 28v ACLs on a motorised chassis which gives quite a lot of scope. They are quite impressive when they work, however the early ones were beset with issues. The personality is also a pain to work with on not-so-good desks. When using them with a Pearl 2000 I actually gave up on it and patched the entire fixture as dimmer channels and got considerably more success with it.
All the best
This post has been edited by timmeh2: 22 October 2011 - 01:48 PM
Posted 22 October 2011 - 02:21 PM
When I was in the game properly the only thing I needed to make and basic generic perfect was a cheap scroller, they became affordable just after my time, and a profile with shutters that were free enough to move easily but firm enough to stay in place when you took your finger off them!
Posted 22 October 2011 - 03:51 PM
In live events I would be looking at screen/projection technologies as these are replacing moving heads to a great extent which themselves replaced the less than successful generic automation attempts of some decades back. Even scrollers are going to lose out to LED at some point not too far in the future.
Posted 23 October 2011 - 06:17 AM
What is it?
Minuette (or similar) Fresnel with a motor on the front to remotely adjust the position of the lamp?
Edited to add: More likely to be a Selecon Mini Fresnel, from your location.
This post has been edited by Ashley R: 23 October 2011 - 06:18 AM