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I’ve placed small orders with them before, and never had an issue. However, I’ve been hearing some not so great reviews on some of the forums. I’m contemplating placing a large order soon, but am uncertain on it. Frightprops also has what I need, but for like $150 more
 

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I bought a few Ghostlight Max's from them a couple years ago. After being told by Guy Kitchell himself that I could put a dimmer on a Ghostlight Max to bring down its brightness, I went ahead and ordered. When they arrived, they were not dimming properly. I shot another email off, and after going back and forth trying to troubleshoot, their customer service rep asked why I would be trying to dim the Max lights since they are NOT dimmable.

I was beyond annoyed that the founder of the company gave me incorrect info regarding one of his own products. I never purchased from them again.

I don't think they're out to do business maliciously, though (after dealing with and getting ripped off by ScareFactory, nothing seems bad anymore).
 

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I've bought a lot of things from HalloweenFX over the years... Pneumatic parts to make props and stuff... their products seem solid. I know that customer support is so-so okay, I did have some email with Guy for questions and I got the impression they are a small outfit and get swamped with customer support issues... however, I will continue ordering from them.

When they arrived, they were not dimming properly.
I am curious to find out more about what happened in your case because maybe one day I'd like to put them in my haunt too. Do you have the still have the Lights and want to play around with them? Honestly, I don't think they misled you on their products, there can be several reasons why they didn't dim for you or expectations... and maybe he had a way that worked perfectly, but your method did something different and didn't meet your expectation? If you willing to dive into this a bit more, I'd be willing to look at it.

1. Let's start off by examining the light itself, I cannot tell by looking at the website for the Max what is going on there... Is it one standard 5mm LED, a cluster of LED's, or what are we dealing with exactly?

2. what were you using to dim the LED?

Some basic info about LEDS: LED's are dimmed by reducing the current, not the voltage, but they do require a minimum forward voltage to operate... so I can imagine that the LED were dimmed to a low level, but then shut off unexpectedly before you reached the desired level... The way LED clusters they usually done, they use a series parallel construction and that will increase the necessary forward voltage to make them operate. It might be that these LED lights require a more sophisticated dimmer to make them work... more so than what I did to dim my LED spotlights.

In my case... so you can see what I did... I have an assorted dozen the Ghostlight Mini and Micro. The Mini's have lenses on them and the Micros have a simple reflector on them. I disassembled a mini and found them to be fairly rugged lights with all metal construction. If I recall the nominal current consumption was low, around 10 to 20 mA, effectively the current consumption of an LED with a resistor dropper in series to limit the current through the LED at 12Volts.

Ghostlighst_1_small.jpg Ghostlighst_3_small.jpg

I am able to dim them over the full range using home-brew electronics to do that... What I did to dim the LED's was build a home-brew 6 channels dimmer box (and more than one spot can be assigned to a channel) that I made with 50K pots, 2N2222 transistors and resistors to limit the input current to the bases of the transistor... I do this for all my LEDs because, well I've found over the years what works. I've also used them under control with an Arduino PWM (to dim them), with an opto-isolator and transistors because they are 12V and Arduino is 3 or 5V... I don't want to have a potential fault that blows up my controllers.
Ghostlight_Dimmer_small.jpg
 

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I've bought a lot of things from HalloweenFX over the years... Pneumatic parts to make props and stuff... their products seem solid. I know that customer support is so-so okay, I did have some email with Guy for questions and I got the impression they are a small outfit and get swamped with customer support issues... however, I will continue ordering from them.



I am curious to find out more about what happened in your case because maybe one day I'd like to put them in my haunt too. Do you have the still have the Lights and want to play around with them? Honestly, I don't think they misled you on their products, there can be several reasons why they didn't dim for you or expectations... and maybe he had a way that worked perfectly, but your method did something different and didn't meet your expectation? If you willing to dive into this a bit more, I'd be willing to look at it.

1. Let's start off by examining the light itself, I cannot tell by looking at the website for the Max what is going on there... Is it one standard 5mm LED, a cluster of LED's, or what are we dealing with exactly?

2. what were you using to dim the LED?

Some basic info about LEDS: LED's are dimmed by reducing the current, not the voltage, but they do require a minimum forward voltage to operate... so I can imagine that the LED were dimmed to a low level, but then shut off unexpectedly before you reached the desired level... The way LED clusters they usually done, they use a series parallel construction and that will increase the necessary forward voltage to make them operate. It might be that these LED lights require a more sophisticated dimmer to make them work... more so than what I did to dim my LED spotlights.

In my case... so you can see what I did... I have an assorted dozen the Ghostlight Mini and Micro. The Mini's have lenses on them and the Micros have a simple reflector on them. I disassembled a mini and found them to be fairly rugged lights with all metal construction. If I recall the nominal current consumption was low, around 10 to 20 mA, effectively the current consumption of an LED with a resistor dropper in series to limit the current through the LED at 12Volts.

View attachment 743763 View attachment 743764

I am able to dim them over the full range using home-brew electronics to do that... What I did to dim the LED's was build a home-brew 6 channels dimmer box (and more than one spot can be assigned to a channel) that I made with 50K pots, 2N2222 transistors and resistors to limit the input current to the bases of the transistor... I do this for all my LEDs because, well I've found over the years what works. I've also used them under control with an Arduino PWM (to dim them), with an opto-isolator and transistors because they are 12V and Arduino is 3 or 5V... I don't want to have a potential fault that blows up my controllers.
View attachment 743765
Wow, thanks for such a thorough response. I purchased the in-line dimmer sold by HFXP, and found that it worked flawlessly with homemade LEDs that used a single diode. The Max dimmed exactly as you described - it dimmed maybe to 70% and then cut off abruptly. I had uploaded a video of the issues to YouTube to show them what was happening, and it was at that point they told me the Maxes could not be dimmed like the Minis and Micros. I deleted the video sometime last year.

I don't have the lights anymore as I purchased them for a haunt in 2019 that I was just designing and building, but I do specifically remember them being of sturdy metal (aluminum?) construction and way smaller than I expected. The lens was about the size of a quarter, and the whole fixture was maybe no larger than a D battery. The lenses on the Maxes are not supposed to come off, but I did anyway to see what happened - the light became a pseudo-flood. Can't recall exactly but the diode looked like the surface mount variant, flat and square versus a traditional rounded top diode. Pretty sure I used them in the haunt without their lens; the lens gave them a tigher, more focused beam and I wanted the light to flood.

Here are a couple pictures of the how the Maxes casted light (the lights behind the camo were just 12v outdoor floods with blue-green gels). I had the Maxes suspensed from the ceiling about 9' up and shining down on the bridge. 2 of them can be seen in these pictures:






I had originally planned to go with GhostLights for ALL of this haunt's lighting, but discovered the ColorPiano from Gantom shortly after and went that route - built-in programs, an ambient/triggered option, the trigger itself and a power supply. At the time, FrightProps had bulk discounts on the ColorPianos so I only spent a little bit more on them versus the GhostLight Maxes. It was hard to beat, and I'd still recommend them over most other things out on the market.
 

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Your Haunt is awesome... so do you do pro haunts? This is a step above my home "haunted Garage"! So yeah... what It sounds like is that the Ghostlight MAX used an LED chip that has several integrated LEDS inside of it and that's where you ran into your problem. A PWM dimmer would need to be used so you can get the proper forward voltage but control the pulse width (Hence that's what PWM stands for) A shorter pulse will keep the LED on for a short time and thus appear dim... And I could say all this and still find that they might put a buck-boost circuit in there and it would completely thwart my efforts to dim them. Well at any rate... I'm glad to see that you have a solution and an awesome haunt. Cheers!
 
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