Build your own show!
We're all about creating dynamic shows by mixing lights, music and
motion through electrical control of almost anything and everything.
||Build your own
computerized show. We provide all
the components you need to create a dazzling
show unique to your environment. Our
diverse line of products allows you to start
small or large and on just about any budget.
you're a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) type, creating your own controller (like pictured to the
right) is an incredible temptation, and usually a recipe for disappointment.
You'll probably get something working but it will probably have the annoying habit of not
working when you're about to it show off. If you
value your time, you'll soon figure out in most cases it's cheaper to buy
well engineered products off-the-shelf so you can focus your time on
creating your entire computerized display.
built it myself!
Light-O-Rama started with the simple
desire to control lights with a computer. A talented engineer left
corporate life to create rock-solid products that were versatile and
expandable. Those early products are still available today, proving
the long term vision of the company is still coming true.
Light-O-Rama has since grown to having employees and customers all around
Let's start with the basics. You want a computer to
blink some lights. Look at the drawing below and it appears pretty
simple. Just connect a "lighting controller" to the back of your
computer and you're good-to-go. The computer sees the equivalent of a
bunch of light switches and can turn them on/off in a predetermined sequence as required.
Take this a step further and imagine your computer performing multiple
at once. It's actually pretty easy for the computer to play music and
flash the lights at appropriate times. We call this sequencing.
It's best to start out small, you can always add more equipment later.
You never throw away older equipment because you can always add to what
you buy from Light-O-Rama.
A 16 Channel Starter Package is best for the first year. Most newer PCs
do not have serial ports, so for your connector (converter) a USB485 is
best. Make sure you get a long enough cable to get from your PC to
the light controller. If you don't want a cable between your PC
and the first controller, you can use our wireless
Easy Light Linker.
Finally, you will need musical sequences. You can design your own musical
sequences using our ShowTime Software
Suite or you can buy pre-made musical
sequences from Light-O-Rama.
The PC is still used to direct the controllers and play the music, but we
have multiple controllers and a small FM transmitter. The transmitter allows
people in their cars to hear the show without annoying the neighbors.
An audio 'Y' connector (available at Radio Shack) is used to split the
stereo audio feed so that we can hear it on the PC's speakers and also send
it to the FM transmitter. Any
FM transmitter will work that takes a
We have also daisy chained three controllers to give us control of more
elements (channels) in the display or because we want more power handling
capability or both. You can daisy chain over 200 controllers and have
many customers with over 100. The maximum number of controllers is
240, allowing control of 3,840 channels.
The next diagram shows an even larger system with wireless connectivity.
The PC still directs the controllers and plays the music, but the
controllers are connected via Light O Rama Easy Linker wireless units rather
than data cables.
You can use wireless to replace any data cable. This is convenient for
areas like parks that are already wired for power, but where data cables
would be impractical. You can also use wireless to divide the display into
islands that have their controllers cabled together, but receive commands
from the PC wirelessly. Wireless units have a range of about 800 to
1000 feet line-of-sight. They are powered by the controller to which they
are attached and are weatherproof making installation very simple. You
simply remove the data cable and insert the wireless units.
In the next diagram, we have replaced the Windows PC with a
ShowTime Pro LOR1602W
Lighting Controller with MP3 Director. This LOR1602MP3 is a 16 channel
lighting controller that has an internal show director. The show
director directs its controller and other controllers while playing the MP3
music files. The show and its scheduled playing times are stored on an
SD memory card. There are simple tools in the Light O Rama
ShowTime Software Suite
to arrange/schedule your shows and transfer them to an SD memory card. You then
simply insert the SD memory card into the LOR1602MP3 ShowTime Director.
A sophisticated industrial setup is shown in the following diagram. The
ShowTime Pro LOR1602MP3 Lighting Controller with MP3 Director is running the show. It is
feeding its stereo audio to both powered speakers (or an amplifier) and an
FM transmitter. It has two
ShowTime Pro lighting controllers (LOR1602W) cabled to it and
it is wirelessly directing two sets of three controllers.
All of these controllers would be connected to power continuously and the
real time clock in the ShowTime Pro LOR1602MP3 would be used to play the shows when
scheduled. During the intervals when no show is active, all controllers shut
down their lights and only their microprocessors are running so very little
power is consumed.
You can have up to nine different shows scheduled to play various days of
the week at times you set. You can change all this at any time by simply
inserting a new SD memory card into the ShowTime
Did any of this make sense?
See a little more here.
Still don't know how to start? We do!
Contact us or one of our
We're here to make sure you're successful. Imagine it, then