Helix snapshots to change lights

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Evil Patrick
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2019 6:06 pm

Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by Evil Patrick » Tue Aug 13, 2019 6:30 pm

Greetings,

I'm deep in Googling/research and on the precipice to invest in a DMXIS, but I need help with a specific question.

I'm a guitarist and my feet are already busy pushing Line 6 Helix buttons and rocking controllers. I'd like for these same actions to result in light pre-configured show changes via DMXIS.

The Helix is capable of outputting various, programmable MIDI signals, but the one place I need is during what is known as a Snaphot change. In a nutshell, the Snapshots provide four virtually instantaneous guitar sound changes within a bank through the use of four distinct foot buttons. For example, one Snapshot/button can be the acoustic guitar intro, the next snapshot/button can be the heavy electric rhythm, the 3rd snapshot/button can be the swirling chorus, and the 4th a screaming lead/solo.

For each of these button presses, I'd like to use an available, assignable MIDI signal to trigger the lights. The limitation within Helix is that MIDI Notes are not available on the Snapshot buttons. Here's what IS available:

MIDI CC
MIDI Channel number
CC number
Value

Bank/Program
MIDI channel number
Bank CC00
Bank CC32
Program

Can the above options be set to trigger at least 4 different scenes when connected to the DMXIS?

Thus far, I've only seen vids of light scene changes triggered by MIDI notes (where keyboard keys can light up any combo of lights) or CC changes (like a keyboard pitch wheel moving a light's pan or tilt position).

Thanks for your help!

Patrick
Last edited by Evil Patrick on Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:24 am, edited 1 time in total.

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

Re: Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by Dave Brown [admin] » Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:57 am

You can use Program Change and CC32 Bank Change messages to switch DMXIS banks & presets.

If you want to test this works before purchasing, the fully functional DMXIS software is freely available from the download page.
Dave Brown - db audioware
Author of DMXIS | D-Pro | Show Buddy | Show Buddy Active | ArtNetMon

Evil Patrick
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2019 6:06 pm

Re: Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by Evil Patrick » Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:27 pm

Woo hoo!

Finally figured this out. The "learn" doesn't seem to work by listening to just any MIDI messages. It does work by listening to continuous controllers, but not user-defined MIDI messages. I was making an assumption that I could send any unique MIDI message during a "learn", and the app would immediately associate that MIDI event with my particular GUI slider adjustments. Nope.

Then there was a moment of RTFM! I'm now incrementing the program number in accordance with the bank preset list and everything is working as expected.

Only one further question at this point. I have created a couple of Presets called "blackout" and "Fadeout" which are just additional presets in a list. All faders in the GUI are down on both of these. I call them with bank/program change messages properly associated. Works great, but...

I want to be able to choose to either instantly black out (music abruptly stops in middle of song), or slowly fade out (the entire song has ended). I actually set up 2 different instances of Presets with all faders down.

Currently, it looks like one can only set a delay for "Fade to Next". I don't want to make all of the scenes fade slowly in between each other; just the final blackout fade slowly. And most songs end with a repetition of chorus parts which are already programmed to one of the Helix snapshot buttons.

What can I do as a workaround to get a couple of blackout program changes, one instantaneous, and another to slowly Fade Out?

Thanks,

Patrick

vwodwo22
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Jul 25, 2019 1:36 am

Re: Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by vwodwo22 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 6:56 pm

Guitar Player here too, although we use Ableton and a click track to control the lights. If I am understanding your issue correctly, your having problems because you want the last scene to "Fade to Black" but it won't because it's DMXIS only has a "Fade to Next" vs a "Fade In"
If this is the case, there is an extra step but it would work like this. Let's pretend this is your song w/presets.

1. Blackout
2. Intro
3. Verse
4. Chorus
5. Bridge
6. Last Chorus (with fade)

Instead of having a "Blackout with Fade", you would want to stick the fade on whatever comes before he last blackout. So pretend for the first portions of the song you use presets 1-5. Your at the last chorus (which is repeated 2x) so you hit patch 6. Once it is done, and you want to fade out,you hit preset 1 again and it will fade to black (in the amount of time you specified in preset 6).

Evil Patrick
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2019 6:06 pm

Re: Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by Evil Patrick » Sat Aug 17, 2019 2:19 am

Vwodwo22,

Pretty good solution! Thanks!

I haven't dug very far into implementation. Right now, I'm seeing the possibility of a lot of reuse. By that, I'm thinking that many of my presets for certain parts (verses, choruses) can be reused between some of the songs, as long as these aren't reused too soon in each set list.

In order to implement your suggestion, I'll probably need to figure out how to save each song into individual Banks, and then figure out how to use a Helix Bank change MIDI event to drive the DMXIS Bank change. This would probably be ideal. I hope it's possible.

On the other hand, if I used just one bank for all songs, reuse would be extremely easy, but inserting Black outs would be trickier, especially as set lists change from club to club.

And if the DMXIS software was enhanced to include a "Fade to Current" ---> problem solved!

Lots of experimentation in my near future. My DMXIS box arrives *tomorrow*!

cgrafx
Posts: 99
Joined: Sat May 28, 2016 8:52 pm

Re: Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by cgrafx » Sat Aug 17, 2019 9:08 am

I think you could create a single program that is effectively blank, but has a fade associated with it and call it fade.

You would do that with a channel mask set to disable all channels.

You could then insert this anywhere you want a fade to occur. Moving from the Fade program to any other should fade to the next program.

You'd have to test this to be sure, but I believe this would work.

Evil Patrick
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2019 6:06 pm

Re: Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by Evil Patrick » Sat Aug 17, 2019 7:06 pm

cgrafx wrote:
Sat Aug 17, 2019 9:08 am
I think you could create a single program that is effectively blank, but has a fade associated with it and call it fade.

[ snip ]
I'm not sure, but I think the fade is defined in the preceding preset, and passed as an argument to the following preset.

Nonetheless, I'll try what you suggested.

Thanks!

cgrafx
Posts: 99
Joined: Sat May 28, 2016 8:52 pm

Re: Helix snapshots to change lights

Post by cgrafx » Sat Aug 17, 2019 7:25 pm

Evil Patrick wrote:
Sat Aug 17, 2019 7:06 pm

I'm not sure, but I think the fade is defined in the preceding preset, and passed as an argument to the following preset.

Nonetheless, I'll try what you suggested.

Thanks!
Yes, exactly.

I'm suggesting you create a preset called FADE that has every channel masked so it is effectively a blank preset that doesn't change any of the current lighting settings except it has a fade time associated with it.

You put that before the blackout that you want to fade (or actually anything you want to fade to).

You could make a couple of them with different fade times, and just use which ever made sense.

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