Printing error in Skypanel 3.0 manual; question

Sun Jul 09, 2017 5:00 am

Hello,

There appears to be a printing error in the user manual for the latest release of Skypanel firmware, v3.0. This is for the PDF available on the product download page.

The ranges listed in the Value and Percent columns for the Green-Magenta point in modes 6, 7, and 8 are the 8-bit values instead of 16-bit values (picture below).

Image

I am curious too if you could describe the rationale behind why the range for this parameter was broken up the way it was, sandwiching "normal" variable DMX ranges between static DMX ranges where the light output remains constant. I have found the back-and-forth interleaved ranges make this parameter somewhat awkward to control on ETC's Eos platform.

From a control standpoint, I believe it would be better and more intuitive if there were a single DMX value for full minus green; a single DMX value for full plus green; and a single DMX value for neutral exactly in the middle. That way the user could ramp up from full minus green to full plus green and know that the light will change smoothly across the entire range. I understand the reason to make DMX value zero be no correction, but I don't understand why neutral covers a large plateau in the center between the two variable ranges, instead of a single value.

Thanks,

Matthew Rohn
IATSE Local 52
mdrohn
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 11:32 pm

Re: Printing error in Skypanel 3.0 manual; question

Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:02 am

Hi Matthew,

Thanks for pointing this out - it will be fixed in the next release of the user manual. However, the separate document call "SkyPanel DMX Implementation Table" has all the correct values and you can refer this document for all your DMX values. I have added it as an attachment to this post for your convenience but you can also find it in the downloads section of our website.

In regard to the rationale for the way the Green/Magenta channel is constructed, we did this for several reasons. The main reason being that not all customers use high end or top-of-line DMX consoles. Many customers use handheld DMX devices or low precision DMX consoles that require a wider range of DMX values in order to reach a particular color output. It is almost impossible for these types of system to be accurate to one DMX value. Therefore, the wide ranges of Full Green, Neutral and Full Minusgreen were implemented. I can see how this could be awkward for a ETC Eos system, but we try to accommodate a wide range of end users.

I hope this answers your question and please let me know if there is anything else we can help with.

- Mike Wagner
Senior Product Manager, Lighting
Mike Wagner
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2015 8:42 pm

Re: Printing error in Skypanel 3.0 manual; question

Sun Jul 23, 2017 6:17 am

Hi Mike,

That does make a lot of sense, and I am grateful for that explanation. I would however respectfully submit that while the current scheme allows a user of a low-precision controller to hit those colors with assurance, users of "proper" consoles (who are likely controlling greater numbers of skypanels at once--I am currently using 28) are left somewhat out in the cold, and have to perform a fair bit of extra work in order to use this parameter with the control that is needed in that context.

In my opinion, the challenge on a high-precision console boils down to how to work around the static DMX range for neutral in the middle. There is already a static range for neutral starting at DMX zero, so the second static range for the same output seems redundant. But mainly, having this additional static range sandwiched between the two dynamic ranges for minus and plus green makes it difficult to define a profile that will transition smoothly from full magenta through neutral and up to full green.

Perhaps you could consider implementing a more high-precision console friendly profile for minus/plus green in the 16-bit modes, as it seems these would be inappropriate for a low-precision controller in the first place. The 8-bit modes could be left as they are, and that way all users could be accommodated.

Thanks as always for your help, and I hope you and the powers that be at Arri consider my suggestion.

Cheers,

Matthew
mdrohn
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Mar 31, 2017 11:32 pm

Re: Printing error in Skypanel 3.0 manual; question

Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:39 am

Hi Matthew,

Thank you for your valuable feedback. We will take your suggestions into consideration. The only way we can make the product better is with input like this from our customers.

If you have any other feedback, feel free to contact us.

- Mike Wagner
Senior Product Manager, Lighting
Mike Wagner
 
Posts: 32
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2015 8:42 pm

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