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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, last year I used VSA and the SSC-32 card hooked up to the RAPU to control my Mr. Bones and the Gourditos. It worked wonderfully well. After Halloween, I purchased a few of the Chauvet ColorSplash Jr. lights and a DMX dimmer along with a Skulltronix Board of Chuckee card as I wanted to convert to DMX for this year. I also bought the Enttec open DMX device as well. So, here's my problem....

BOC is configured with start address of 8. The servos are Hitec HS-425BB. BOC servo settings are set to 8 bit mode (I'm assuming this is what it should be for these HiTec servos) with DMX addresses starting at 20 (19 for VSA) and going up by 2. I can confirm I can control the servo with full motion from within BOC config.

I have the entec open DMX connected to the BOC with a terminator. I've saved and committed all my changes to the BOC. I go into VSA (version 4.020) and set up the config. Port is ENTTEC-0, DMX address for the servo in question is set to 19. If I set servo type to DMX Servo in VSA, I get full servo motion (I haven't introduced the RAPU yet). However, if I set it to BOC Servo (which is what I thought I needed to set it to), then I only get about a couple degrees of movement from the servo.

I had this problem last year as well and I don't think I ever got it working.

Any thoughts on what to try/check? I really would like to have the BOC, my 3 axis skull (with LED eyes), and my 2 Chauvet colorsplash lights running this year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Just in case I still can't get this to work, perhaps I should ask what others use. I'd like to control regular servos (I have currently about 12 servos that I'd like to control in this prop), RGB LEDs (to change color, and dim - i.e. GYS eye kit), a Chauvet DMX Dimmer and 2 Chauvet Colorsplash Jr lights. Of course, they all need to be able to be programmed by VSA and I'd really like to use the RAPUv5 to play it so it doesn't have to be connected to my computer.

Any other boards out there besides BOC that I could still get my hands on and that would work with my equipment?
 

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Bucky Brain Surgeon
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I think I looked at all of that stuff and decided just to stick with using VSA on the computer to control everything. We added DMX lighting and 2 DMX dimmer/relay boxes. VSA controls a maximum of 128 channels and we started running out of channels fast. After setting everything up, this year's routine I think has maybe 10 unused channels in VSA. We are running 32 servos, 2 DMX dimmer/relay boxes and I lost count of how many DMX lights we're using. Some of the lights use 7 channels each, some use 5 and some use 2. I worry that next year I'll be forced to see if I can make VSA control more than 128 devices by running another SSC-32 board and another Enttec box at different addresses. I know Exorcist will run multiple VSA programs and VSA has a checkbox to "enable simultaneous play" but I don't know if it will work. That will be an experiment for after Halloween.
 

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HalloweenJared,

Last I remember, the BoC-native mode is to use 2 channels' worth of data per servo. Each channel can describe 256 levels (0-255). Native BoC mode (which is what VSA is running when you say 'BoC Servo') is to run 2 DMX channels per servo. It doesn't use the full range of 2 channels (0-65535), but it uses more than one channel can describe. I may be getting too detailed here :) Point is, if you've configured the BoC to be in '8-bit mode' then I'm guessing it's not 'acting like a BoC' anymore, and instead should be treated like a 'DMX Servo'. This probably also means you shouldn't be jumping by 2 channels at a time, when setting these up in VSA.

I hope this makes sense. I don't have a BoC myself, but I've seen a little about them before.

Once you have this set up properly, the BoC and the Medusa will operate servos the same. If you wanted to control more than 1 RGB led, or control pneumatics, etc, that's where the Medusa DMX would gain an edge for you.

- Hook
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hooked,

The two channels per servo makes sense (in that if you set it to type BOC servo, it uses 2 channels). I don't know enough about DMX to understand why it uses 2 channels.

I played around with things and noticed that in order to get VSA to "work" using BOC Servo type, I need to configure BOC to be Parallax 180 servos. However, I still can't use my RAPU standalone as the DMX controller unfortunately. One would think that if I configured it to be 8 bit and set it to be a DMX servo in VSA, that the RAPU should be able to control it. Ugh.

So, do you have any of the Medusa boards in stock? How much are they?
 

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If I'm reading the graphic on skulltronix' site the BoC uses a command that describes the duration of the servo pulse directly, in two microsecond increments. So, to support a range of 500uS to 2500uS, they need a command from VSA that ranges from a value of 250 to 1250. One byte (one channel of DMX) can convey numbers only up to 255. But if you gang two bytes together (two DMX channels here), that can convey numbers up to 65535. So, that's why they need two channels' worth of info. Also, if I remember right, this is the same format the Parallax products use, so that's why that setting in VSA would work.

I do have Medusa DMX in stock. They're $90 + 5 for shipping anywhere in the U.S. If you're interested, PM me and I'll send you my PayPal address. Also, check out this post, if you'd like to know a little more about what it can do.

- Hook
 
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