Did I get the wrong product? (DMXIS)

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shanebarber
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 3:47 pm

Did I get the wrong product? (DMXIS)

Post by shanebarber » Wed Apr 17, 2019 5:51 pm

Hi there. My goal is to use a laptop to fire off audio, video, and lighting shows. Everything will be preprogrammed. The only thing I will be doing on the fly is selecting certain songs (and likely I will just have a set running from start to finish without changing anything).

My goal was to use one piece of software to do all of this.

I have always used Cubase and I don't think it is ideal to accomplish this, but it is possible by having all of the tracks in order and using a video file and using MIDI to DMX.

Right now so far I have only been able to create one MIDI track and draw with a pencil the behavior I want within the CC lanes of that one MIDI track (I'm not entering any notes).Basically I am drawing fader activity. Is that how all DMX works? Does it assume you're always using faders? It is extremely cumbersome to use Cubase for this.

I had envisioned being able to create rather rapid fire lighting at a very detailed level, more like "on/off" type commands which seem hard with a fader. I'm mainly using effects lighting.

My question is, would Show Buddy/Show Buddy Active OR D-Pro be a better solution? Would that be a better product for creating tight, detailed timing with my lighting? Cubase with DMXIS alone looks like it may be better for people who want some MIDI hardware controller on stage or something, which I don't need. There are literally zero videos on YouTube for Cubase + DMXIS which makes it seem quite formidable, unless there are Cubase users on this forum, so Show Buddy, D-Pro, or something like Show Cue Systems may be better. I just discovered D-Pro seems to support DMXIS so that may be the direction I look into since it looks like I can control D-Pro from MIDI inside Cubase on the same machine.

Dave Brown [admin]
Posts: 1798
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 4:53 pm

Re: Did I get the wrong product? (DMXIS)

Post by Dave Brown [admin] » Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:46 am

shanebarber wrote:
Wed Apr 17, 2019 5:51 pm
Right now so far I have only been able to create one MIDI track and draw with a pencil the behavior I want within the CC lanes of that one MIDI track (I'm not entering any notes).Basically I am drawing fader activity. Is that how all DMX works? Does it assume you're always using faders? It is extremely cumbersome to use Cubase for this.
That's not the usual way to program a DMXIS show. As you've found out, drawing fader curves is tedious work. It's also inefficient - every song needs to be programmed from scratch, and you get little reuse across songs. Finally, it's a maintenance nightmare when you need to add or change fixtures in your rig.

Better to let DMXIS do all the heavy lifting. Create a bunch of useful DMXIS banks & presets for the looks you need. Make good use of the DMXIS sound tracker and oscillators for building dynamic presets and chases.

Create two MIDI tracks in Cubase - one to select DMXIS banks, and another to select DMXIS presets. (You do this by routing the MIDI tracks into DMXIS MIDI channels 15 & 16). Finally, drop in MIDI notes as necessary to switch DMXIS presets.

The only downside of this approach is that you lose the fine control you have with envelopes. But it's worthwhile for the productivity boost, and you can still create very impressive light shows using presets alone.

Note that you can mix the two techniques - using presets for the majority of your design, and selectively using envelopes for those FX which are difficult to do with DMXIS presets & oscillators.
My question is, would Show Buddy/Show Buddy Active OR D-Pro be a better solution?
Show Buddy is like a simplified Cubase, with extra tools to manage set lists. I created it specifically for those of us who don't need the advanced features of DAWs like Cubase or Ableton. Show design is much simpler, with drag & drop of lighting presets directly onto the backing tracks.

Show Buddy integrates seamlessly with either DMXIS (for lighting) or Show Buddy Active (for lighting + video).

D-Pro is quite a different product. It's more of a traditional lighting console design, with a more complex programming workflow. Although D-Pro can be triggered externally via MIDI for automation of shows, the workflow is really focused on hands-on show control (live theater work, for example)
Dave Brown - db audioware
Author of DMXIS | D-Pro | Show Buddy | Show Buddy Active | ArtNetMon

shanebarber
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 3:47 pm

Re: Did I get the wrong product? (DMXIS)

Post by shanebarber » Thu Apr 18, 2019 5:39 pm

Thanks for the reply Dave. I will download Show Buddy demo tonight.


I'm literally just using Cubase for stereo track playback and video. And Cubase would not be ideal for switching songs (would have to use arranger tabs which I think are limited or markers).

I am very glad Show Buddy will work with DMXIS.

Dave Brown [admin]
Posts: 1798
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 4:53 pm

Re: Did I get the wrong product? (DMXIS)

Post by Dave Brown [admin] » Fri Apr 19, 2019 12:46 am

shanebarber wrote:
Thu Apr 18, 2019 5:39 pm
I'm literally just using Cubase for stereo track playback and video. And Cubase would not be ideal for switching songs (would have to use arranger tabs which I think are limited or markers).

I am very glad Show Buddy will work with DMXIS.
Just to be clear:
  1. Show Buddy + DMXIS automates audio & lighting, but not video.
  2. Show Buddy + Show Buddy Active automates audio, lighting and video.
  3. You can use your DMXIS hardware box with either solution [1] or [2].
Dave Brown - db audioware
Author of DMXIS | D-Pro | Show Buddy | Show Buddy Active | ArtNetMon

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