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About Ausman

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    Hi, I am New!

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  • Country Australia
  1. Christmas Lights to music

    Just new to the forum and this subject is something that I have been doing for years. The lightorama product looks great, but I needed my own solutions to animatronics issues I faced well before it's time and I have evolved things over the years. If you are simply looking to run a "synchronised" soundtrack and display, try using a cheap MP3 player and electrically tapping into it's control buttons so that the PLC runs it. I have run sequences of up to 10 minutes without any problems at all, and you could likely go much longer owing to the accuracy of things these days. In the early days I did it with cds with no problems either. For the control side it is essentially based around starting up a count on a fixed scan system and then doing compares to trigger whatever is required. Not bagging computers, but I would much rather use a PLC as they are far more reliable in my situations owing to their very nature. Of course things are much more complex than I make it sound, (eg all the safety controls I have to have, plus a host of other stuff) but the basics are pretty easy. The final setup can need patience to get it perfect, as you don't have a visual timeline to match things up. I carefully build my soundtrack, noting times as I go, and then run it in a wave reader so that I can cross-check things again. This then lets me relate actions needed to the count in the PLC quite accurately. The final finetuning is done with a video of the running show that lets me tweak it need to constantly run the show after just changing a few numbers because you lose track of so many minor alterations needed! If you want to get really adventurous you can write it all so that you do block transfers into your compare registers to have a totally different show. Run the MP3 player through to a different track and away you go! If you need to make it really permanent (like most of my installs are) buy a few of the players you end up using, as they all work differently and it can lead to swear words emerging unknown from one's mouth during reconfiguring things for a new player if the old one dies! cheers, Ausman