AS you may (probably not) have noticed, I have not been into the space
recently. The reason for this as you may (probably not) know is mainly due
to the school production occurring, and me rigging the stage lights /
programming the lighting desk. The school’s productions are
remarkably professional for a school, and as such there is a lot of this
kind of work to do. Today I finished the last bits of tweaking the
programming (programming meaning setting up combinations of lights on a
controller desk, not coding), and all is was going remarkably well. Until,
a few seconds after I finished, the desk completely died. The dress
rehearsal is tomorrow so I have about 4 hours to fix it I am asking
for any general advice on what may or may not be the problem here.
Ok, a bit of brief history about the problem.
- About a week ago, the desk started crashing more than usual (locking up,
requiring reboot, screen still active but frozen, and LEDs on but again
- Avolites (the company that makes it) said that this was a common
problem, and that you should remove the graphics card to fix it.
- The graphics card is a PC graphics card, for connecting to an external
monitor if required,
- We removed it and the problem went away - I noticed that the desk uses a
bog-standard ATX supply
- Tonight we had the technical rehearsal, all went well
- After the rehearsal, doing a bit of tweaking without the director, the
DMX output cut out (essentially as though disconnected) - a reboot fixed
- Doing some tweaking with the director, all was going well.
- Tweaked the last scene - all working
- Looked up to ask director if happy with scene
- Looked down - desk gone to shit
And what does “gone to shit” actually mean in this case
- Desk screen (not external monitor, one of those white and purple ones)
- LEDs frozen, but significantly dimmer than normal
- There is a plug in lamp that fixes to the top of the desk, which shines
light onto the desk, so the operator can see what he is doing. - this went
- I turned the desk off, waited a few seconds, then turned it on.
- Screen still blank - DMX as though disconnected - nothing responsive -
all LED indicator lights off
The lamp has a switch, with Dim, Off and Full (in that order)
When on dim, the screen backlight was at its dimmest
When off, the screen backlight was a bit brighter
When on full, the screen backlight was noticeably brighter
Apparently, there are a number of internal fuses, one of which is on the
DMX output line.
What I intend to do tomorrow
- See if the fairies have magically fixed it in the night
- Check Fuses
- Probe the power supply / swap it out for another
- Look for shorts
- Look for bad caps
The technical officer from a rental agency called HSL is coming in tomorrow
(with a replacement desk to rent) to have a look at it as well
It is highly unlikely he will fix it (not that kind of technical officer).
We need to get the desk working for about 10 mins so we can copy the show
onto a floppy (yes, its that old) and transfer it onto a good desk.
The desk is an Avolites Pearl 2000
The dress rehearsal is tomorrow night, the public one the day after.
I have 2 one-hour windows tomorrow during the school day, and about an hour
the day after.
Thanks in advance for any help