5.6 Patching Fixtures

Once fixtures have been added to a show they must be patched so that the console knows where to send control data for the fixtures (the address) and what type of data to send to the fixtures (the protocol). Many fixtures, such as moving lights, are assigned a dmx address and utilize the DMX512 protocol for remote control of their various parameters whereas other devices such as video switchers are assigned an IP address and utilize IP protocols for remote control of their device parameters. The following sub-chapters provide instructions on how to patch fixtures using these protocols.

[Important]Important

ArtNet and e1.31 (sACN) are supported by Hog 4 OS but are treated as extensions of the DMX patch data. Therefore ArtNet and sACN outputs are configured per universe via the node settings window for the DP8000. See Art-Net and E1.31(sACN) for details.

5.6.1 Patching DMX Protocol Fixtures

The vast majority of moving lights and dimmers recieve their control data using a control protocol called DMX-512. Under this protocol, fixtures are controlled via dmx channels and are assigned a dmx address (also known as the ‘start address’). The number of dmx channels occupied by a fixture beyond its start address varies by fixture and by mode so it is important to ensure the fixture type scheduled in the show matches the fixture that is hung the lighting rig.

[Important]Important

When the "show details" button is enabled in the fixture window the dmx patch points for a compound fixture's indvidual parts are displayed, however these internal patch points are fixed and cannot be modified. To identify the true patch point of a compound fixture turn off the "show details" button.

To patch a fixture using the DMX protocol:

  1. SetupPatch : this opens theFixture window.

  2. Select the fixture fixtures you wish to patch and then press the Patch @ button to open the Fixture Patch window.

  3. Select a DP8000 in the list on the left-hand side of the window. If there are no DP8000s shown, or you want to patch to one that isn't listed shown in the list, you need to add it. See Adding and Removing DMX Processors.

  4. Click or press one of the available DMX universes shown to select a universe to patch to. The display gives a graphical indication of which addresses are already occupied. Type in a number for the fixture's DMX start address; the next free address is shown below each universe.

  5. Click on OK or press Enter.

  6. If you have finished patching, click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DMX Processors.

Figure 5.2. The Fixture Patch window

The fixture patch window

You can also use the keypad to patch fixtures. For example, to patch Studio Color 1 to DMX Processor 2, Universe 4, at address 17:

  • Fixture 1 @ 2/4/17 Enter

To patch further fixtures to the same DMX Processor and universe, you can use the shorthand:

  • Fixture 2 @ 33 Enter

To patch a fixture at the next available address on the same DMX Processor and universe:

  • Fixture 3 @ Enter

Again, if you have finished patching click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DMX Processors.

Patching Several Fixtures at Once

If you select several fixtures and patch them, Hog 4OS will allocate them to a continuous range of DMX addresses, assigning each fixture's patch address so that it follows on from the last.

For example, to patch 5 Studio Colors, starting at DMX address 1:

  1. Open + Fixture : open the Fixture window

  2. Fixture 1 Thru 5 Patch @ 1 , Enter : You can use the @ key as an alternative to the Patch @ button.

Studio Colors 1 to 5 will now have the incremental patch addresses of 1:1, 1:17, 1:33, 1:49, and 1:65. Note that the fixtures selected do not have to be from a contiguous range, and they can be of different types.

[Tip]Tip

When you patch a range of fixtures, Hog 4OS takes the selection order into account, so that Fixture 1 Thru 10 @ 1 patches the fixtures starting with Fixture 1 and going up in numerical order, while Fixture 10 Thru 1 @ 1 patches the fixtures starting with Fixture 10 and going down in reverse numerical order.

Patching Fixtures to Multiple DMX Addresses

You can patch one fixture to multiple different DMX addresses; this can be useful with desk channels, where you want one desk channel to control several dimmer channels. This is sometimes known as ‘soft patching’.

To patch a fixture to a second DMX address, select the fixture again and patch it as before. Alternatively, using the command line:

  • Fixture [Desk Channel] 1 @ 2/1/1 + 4/2/5, Enter : patches the desk channel to DMX Processor 2, universe 1, address 1, and to DMX Processor 4, universe 2, address 5.

Similarly, you can patch a fixture multiple times so as to fill a specified range of DMX addresses. This can be useful if you want to soft patch a desk channel to a continuous series of dimmer DMX addresses.

  • Fixture [Desk Channel] 1 @ 1 Thru 10, Enter : patches the desk channel to each address between 1 and 10.

[Tip]Tip

You don't have to patch fixtures before you start programming. Once the fixtures have been added they can be programmed. However, without a patch, you will not be able to output DMX.

Patching Fixtures with DMX Gaps

To specify a dmx channel gap when patching press the @ key a second time when the “fixture patch” window is open. This will put the word “Gap” on the command line. Input a numerical value after the word Gap and press enter.

Example:

[1<3 @ 1 Gap 5] will result in the following patch if the fixtures being patched are 3 channels each:

Fixture 1 occupies Dmx channels 1 < 3 (then a five channel gap: 4,5,6,7,8)

Fixture 2 occupies Dmx channels 9 < 11 (then a five channel gap: 12,13,14,15,16)

Fixture 3 occupies Dmx channels 17 < 19

Patching Fixtures with DMX Offsets

To specify an offset to be used between the start addresses of fixtures when patching press the @ key a third time when the “fixture patch” window is open. This will put the word “Offset” on the command line. Input a numerical value after the word Offset and press enter.

Example:

[1<3 @ 1 Offset 5] will result in the following patch if the fixtures being patched are 3 channels each:

Fixture 1 occupies Dmx channels 1 < 3

Fixture 2 occupies Dmx channels 6 < 8

Fixture 3 occupies Dmx channel 11 < 13

Finding Unused DMX Addresses

Figure 5.3. The View by DP view of the Fixture window

The View by DP view, showing the tutorial rig, plus additional universes and
                non-continuous ranges of addresses used.

You can see an overview of all patched fixtures in the Fixture window by using View by DP; see Figure 5.3, “The View by DP view of the Fixture window”. This shows a spreadsheet with start address, fixture type and user number for each DMX universe. Additional rows show where there is an available space in the allocated DMX addresses. This is useful when you are patching additional fixtures and you need to know what ranges of DMX addresses are free. To show this view:

  • SetupPatchView by DP : the View by DP button is on the toolbar at the top of the Fixture window.

You can use the buttons in the toolbar at the top of the window to view each group of four universes of a DMX Processor.

Deselect the View by DP button to return the Fixture window to its normal view.

Adding and Removing DMX Processors

All fixtures in the Hog 4OS are patched to DP8000s. The Hog 4OS automatically detects and makes available any connected DP800s for patching but if you want to patch fixtures to DP8000s that are not currently connected to the console, you must first add the DP8000s to the show:

  1. SetupPatchPatch @ : open the Fixture Patch window. The Patch @ button is on the toolbar at the top of the Fixture window.

  2. Press the Add button below the list of DP800s. The Add DP window will open:

    The Add DP dialog
  3. Assign a net number.

  4. OK : close the Add DP window.

  5. OK : close the Fixture Patch window.

To remove a DP8000 from a show file:

  1. SetupPatchPatch @ : open the Fixture Patch window. The Patch @ button is on the toolbar at the top of the Fixture window.

  2. Select the DP8000 you wish to remove from the show file.

  3. Press the Remove button below the list of DP800s. A confirmation dialog will open. Press OK to unpatch and remove the DP8000.

Fixtures with Multiple DMX Patch Points

Some fixture types consist of several separate elements that work together, each with their own DMX address. An example is a par-can with a scroller, which operationally you want to treat as a single fixture (‘a light that can change brightness and colour’) but that physically consists of a dimmer-controlled lamp and a colour scroller that have separate and often non-sequantial patch points. Similarly, some moving fixtures such as the Vari*Lite VL5 consist of the moving head with its own control electronics, fed by an external dimmer. See Figure 5.4, “Examples of Fixtures requiring Multiple Patch Points”.

Figure 5.4. Examples of Fixtures requiring Multiple Patch Points

Schematic diagram of scroller-dimmer and VL5, showing multiple patch points.
              Scroller-dimmer has the scroller on DP8000 1, DMX 2, address 501, and the dimmer on
              DP8000 1, DMX 4, address 2.

With such fixtures, there are two or more DMX start addresses, which may not be numerically adjacent, and indeed may be on different universes and DP800s. Hog 4OS handles this by giving these fixtures multiple ’Patch Points‘, which you address separately in the Fixture Patch window.

For example, to patch the fixture with a scroller (of fixture type ‘Scroller Dimmer’) shown in Figure 5.4, “Examples of Fixtures requiring Multiple Patch Points”:

  1. SetupPatch : Open the Fixture window.

  2. Fixture [Scroller Dimmer] 1 @ : Opens the Fixture Patch window.

  3. Select the Fixture Patch Point (for the scroller) from the drop down list in the top right corner of the Fixture Patch window:

    Screenshot fragment of the patch point dropdown menu
  4. Click DMX 2 to select the second DMX universe.

  5. [501] Enter : Enter the DMX address for the scroller.

  6. Fixture [Scroller Dimmer] 1 @ : Opens the Fixture Patch window again.

  7. Click DMX 4 to select the fourth DMX universe.

  8. Select the Intensity Patch Point (for the dimmer) from the drop down list.

  9. [2] Enter : Enter the DMX address for the dimmer.

  10. Click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DP8000s.

In the Fixture window, these types of fixture will span more than one row - one for each Patch point; see Figure 5.5, “A Fixture with Multiple Patch Points”.

Figure 5.5. A Fixture with Multiple Patch Points

Screenshot fragment of Fixture window, showing scroller-dimmer patched: fixture
              1/2/501, intensity 1/4/2.

Cloning DMX Universes

Cloning patching copies fixture and associated patch information from one DMX universe to another. A selected fixture will therefore control recurring patch locations across several universes.

To clone the patching of one universe to another:

  1. SetupPatchView by DP : open the Fixture window in View by DP view.

  2. Select the universe to clone by clicking on the column in the spreadsheet. The selected universe is highlighted in blue.

  3. Press Clone Universe. The Clone Universe window will open; see Figure 5.6, “The Clone Universe window”.

  4. Select a destination DP8000 and universe. You can create a new DP8000 if you want to clone to a universe on a DP8000 not currently connected to the console, and you can specify an offset for the patch addresses to position them differently in the universe. Click on OK when you have finished.

  5. Click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DP8000s.

Figure 5.6. The Clone Universe window

The clone universe window

If cloning will overwrite patch information in the destination, you will be asked for confirmation. The console will only unpatch previous fixtures that are in the way of new ones; the rest of the destination universe will be untouched.

[Tip]Tip

You can also move patching from one universe to another by cloning the patch to the new universe, and then unpatching the old universe; see Unpatching Fixtures from DMX Channels.

Cloning DMX Processors

You can copy fixture and associated patch information from one DP8000 to another by cloning a DP8000's patch. A selected fixture will then control recurring patch locations across several DP8000s.

To clone the patching of one DP8000 to another:

  1. SetupPatchView by DP : open the Fixture window in View by DP view.

  2. Select the DP8000 to clone by selecting it from the DP8000 drop down menu.

  3. Press Clone DP. The Clone DMX Processor window will open; see Figure 5.7, “The Clone DP window”.

  4. Select a source DP8000 from the source section of the window. Click Unpatch Source if you wish to move patch entries to the destination DP8000 instead of copying them.

  5. Select a destination DP8000 from the destination section of the window. If there is conflicting patching on the destination DP8000 you can choose to unpatch only fixtures in conflict from the destination DP8000 or to unpatch all fixtures already patched to the destination.

  6. You can create a new DP8000 if you want to clone to a universe on a DP8000 not currently connected to the console. Click the Add DP button.

  7. Click OK.

  8. Click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DP8000s.

Figure 5.7. The Clone DP window

The clone dp window

Unpatching Fixtures from DMX Channels

You can unpatch a fixture in order to repatch it with a different start address, or to stop DMX output being sent to it. Unpatching does not erase any programming for the fixture in groups, palettes, cues and so on.

There are two ways to unpatch. Unpatching by fixture removes all patching information for that fixture, even if it has been patched to several start addresses or has multiple patch points. Unpatching by start address only unpatches a specific start address, leaving other start addresses associated with the fixture intact.

Unpatching by Fixture

To unpatch all patch information associated with a fixture:

  1. SetupPatch : open the Fixture window.

  2. Select the fixture by clicking on it, then press Unpatch at the top of the Fixture window. This unpatches the fixture, but leaves all programming for the fixture intact.

  3. Click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DP8000s.

Or, using the command line:

  1. SetupPatch : open the Fixture window.

  2. Fixture 1 Pig + @, Enter

  3. Click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DP8000s.

Unpatching by DMX Address

To unpatch a specific DMX start address you need to change the Fixture window to View by DP.:

  1. SetupPatch : open the Fixture window.

  2. View by DP : change the Fixture window to View by DP.

When View by DP is selected, the Unpatch @ button is available on the top toolbar of the Fixture window. To unpatch start address 200 in the currently selected DMX universe (highlighted in blue):

  • Unpatch @ 200

To unpatch several start addresses:

  • Unpatch @ 1/2/200 + 2/3/300

To unpatch a range of start addresses:

  • Unpatch @ 200 Thru 300 : unpatches all start addresses between 200 and 300.

To unpatch an entire universe:

  1. Click or press on the universe to unpatch, so that it is highlighted in blue.

  2. Press Unpatch Universe at the top of the Fixture window and confirm that you want to unpatch.

Click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DP8000.

To unpatch an entire DP8000:

  1. Select the DP8000 to unpatch from the dropdown list at the top of the Fixture window.

  2. Press Unpatch DP, and confirm that you want to unpatch.

Click on Apply Patch or close the Fixture window to send the new patch information to the DP8000.

5.6.2 Patching Video Protocol Fixtures

Hog 4 OS supports direct control (via FixtureNet) of a variety of ethernet based video switching devices as listed below:

  • Barco MatrixPro-II SD/HD/3G-SDI 8x8, 16x16, 32x32

  • Blackmagic Smart VideoHub 12x12, 20x20, 40x40

  • Lightware MX 4x4, MX 6x6, MX 8x4, MX 8x8, MX 9x9, MX 12x12, MX 16x16

  • AJA KUMO 16x16, 32x32

Each of these devices utilizes its own proprietary IP protocol for remote control, however, each device is patched and configured using the same Hog 4 OS procedure described below.

To patch and configure a video protocol fixture:

  1. SetupPatch : this opens the Fixture window.

  2. Press the Patch Media button located at the top of the fixture window.

  3. Select the dedicated tab for the video switcher type to be patched. If a dedicated tab for the video switcher is not shown in the media patch window, then the video switcher fixture has not yet been scheduled in the show.

  4. Fill in the approrpriate data for each of the listed fixtures and press okay. See below for addition info:

    • Node: the DP8000 whose FixtureNet port is connected to the same network as the video switcher's network port

    • Address: the IP address of the video switcher

    • Output: the physical output on the video switcher that the fixture will control

Figure 5.8. The Patch Media Window

Barco Matrix 0808 tab in patch media window
[Caution]Caution

Hog 4 PC supports the patching of video protocol devices but does not support their control via the local ethernet adapter. Control of video protocol devices is supported on consoles and external DP8000s only.