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DMX is a very common lighting control network in the event industry. It was originally designed to reduce the amount of wiring in dimmer racks from one wire per dimmer to just a single twisted pair for up to 512 dimmer channels. As the lighting industry evolved to automated lights it was then used to control lights with multiple channels used for things like pan, tilt and colour.
A more recent variant is RDM (Remote Device Management) which is backwards compatible with DMX, but adds bidirectional communication so that you can communicate with lights and get responses back. This allows things like remote setup and addressing, and also fault reporting.
This device is a bluetooth interface for DMX/RDM lighting networks that lets you use an app on your phone to test and program lights whether they be on the test bench or in a rig. It's not a cheap device, because it's a very valuable tool to professional lighting technicians in the same way as good OBD units are a valuable tool to vehicle mechanics.
The DMX-cat is a popular choice for lighting technicians, and is used my myself and most of my colleagues at work. The app has a huge integrated library of the most common lights in the industry to make life a lot easier by providing a suitable control interface for each light or control module.
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10 thoughts on “Inside the dmx-cat event-industry lighting tool”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars dragade101 says:

    Awww that is a cute dance of the BMFL, when it says "i'm here" dance. Though we should call these Bite My Fucking Lip

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars xoviat says:

    The programming connector is for TagConnect

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jo Russ says:

    that "I'm here" dance is very cute 🙂

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Hyperionlink says:

    I'd love to send you a list of the typical DMX setup I use for installs, as far as what's available in the states.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Milky3ay says:

    I am a firmware developer for DMX/RDM light fixtures. A wireless DMX/RDM unit from the City Theatrical outputs very weird DMX data frame where it breaks the DMX data frame into chunks. It would hold the signal line high for a brief moment in between the chunk until it is finished sending all 513 bytes of data. This resulted in the DMX frame get stretched and the timing got thrown out of the window.

    I had a major problem as my firmware relies on a break condition of the UART to signal the start of a each DMX data frame and a timer. So it would only detect the data that sits between the UART break condition and expired timing while the rest got lost as a result. My fixture works with so many other popular DMX controllers that has a proper DMX data frame with strict timing such as Enttec, DMXKing etc.. except this thing. The client (quiet big) would not wanted to change the controller system, I ended up rewritten the whole low level receiving end mechanism to support this device. To these days, there is no explanation as to why the City Theatrical would allow such deformed DMX frame like that in their commercial product.

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Travis says:

    thats not good, nobody wants a stiff gender bender..

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Travis says:

    i love teardowns of cool specialized stuff like this stuff most of us probably wont get a chance to tear apart ourselves

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Dylan Prouty says:

    Hey Clive! I’ve got a potentially interesting video idea for you.

    Recently some of those “disposable” personal fog machines have been being built with a USB-C charging port on them. Before, even if there was juice left in the machine you were at the will of the battery and that’s why people were tearing them open and charging them in less-than-ideal ways. These new machines still aren’t refillable with juice, but the battery has a charging port.

    This begs the question, though: Do they have an overcharge protector? I haven’t torn one open personally but I would not at all be surprised if some models don’t given that most of these come from factories in China, and that’s a serious hazard.

    It’d be interesting to see a handful of models opened up on camera. I don’t suggest you just go out and buy a bunch of new “fog machines” to source the rechargeable ones but you might have to find a more reliable source than your local roadway. Unless the UK has a more serious issue with an overlap between people who litter and people who use personal fog machines than I thought.

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Phonotical says:

    On the board it says 94v-0, I've seen that a few times, what does it mean

    Light sounded like it needs some grease

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Keri Szafir says:

    "It converts a female to a male"
    Now we're talking about transitions – an important topic in electrical engineering!

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