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Topic: DMX Controlled Audio/Microphone
Message: Posted by: MagicByRy (Feb 10, 2005 09:02PM)
I am always trying to make my show as fool-proof as possible, therefore I was wondering if it was possible to control my microphone via DMX. There are certain times in the show when I need it on and others when I need it off. Currently I am just having a stage hand turn the volume up and down, but I thought it would be great to have it controlled via DMX. Any ideas? The only thing I could think of was to have the wireless microphone receiver plugged into a DMX relay. Is it bad to have power going on and off to the receiver? Thanks in advance.
Message: Posted by: Kevin Ridgeway (Feb 10, 2005 09:20PM)
Most wireless systems that I am aware of will have a delay before they start receiving the signal. There is also the possibility of a POP sound when doing this.
One other thing if you still have some one adjusting your mic....they should be muting you, not turning volume up and down.
I am pretty well versed in DMX and I don't see how it could be done...Also I don't think you want to mix your sound and lighting together. You will start getting humms, buzzes, etc in your sound.

Let me think about some options overnight, plus some others here at the Café may have a good solution.


Message: Posted by: n3cromanc3r (Feb 10, 2005 10:15PM)
I keep seeing the term DMX for lighting and stuff..what is that?
Message: Posted by: Kevin Ridgeway (Feb 10, 2005 10:41PM)
DMX is the most used "language" in lighting. The other often used is call Multiplex.
Stay with DMX it is the best out there.
It works by having all the different fixtures (dimmers, intelligent lights, fog machines, fans, etc) having a specific address. Each universe of DMX is 512 channels. Each fixture uses anywhere from 1 channel to upwards of 20 channels. Therefor you need to have enough universes to have enough channels. For most anyone here 1 universe of 512 channels will be plenty.

If you use a device that does not have DMX built in there are two options. If it is Multiplex, then you need a multi-DMX convertor. If it is say a non DMX fan, then you need a DMX controlled relay. this relay will act upon the DMX signal and turn on and off the fan. If it is a light then most likely you will be using a dimmer.

Now on to programming...
You can create scenes, cues, etc. For example a scene may be the lights coming on, fan coming on latter with fog, fog turning off or maybe even just lower output, and the fan still running.
With show control type of controllers, they will also play the music, video, etc.

Message: Posted by: theaterfreak89 (Feb 10, 2005 10:50PM)
I am a sepcial effects and lighting designer and am expert at DMX. I am currently automating my 360 Systems' Instant Replay through DMX with a relay from Blue Point Engineering. It is possible to control sound mixes through DMX, but you need a fairly large budget. The new Yamaha digital consoles can be adapted to switch between "scenes" (specific mixes) through DMX. However these mixers are tens of thousands of dollars. They can also be configured through a lighting console that features MIDI, but again, these consoles are pretty pricey. Feel free to pm me about anything else relating to DMX.

Message: Posted by: CamelotFX (Feb 11, 2005 10:32AM)
On 2005-02-10 23:50, theaterfreak89 wrote:
I am a special effects and lighting designer and am expert at DMX.

Me too! (I love the Café.) But I don't understand the question. In the standard booth, the light board and the sound board sit next to one another as do the techs operating them. The wireless receiver is normally plugged into one of the audio channels and is controlled from the mixer console, faded in and out as needed. The receiver itself is always on and always at full volume. No DMX needed; the receiver is never power-cycled during a show for the reasons mentioned above: lag, pop, etc.
Message: Posted by: n3cromanc3r (Feb 11, 2005 11:00AM)
Wow that really sounds like overkill for most magicians who have a "regular job" and do shows on the side. But I could see where it would be indespensible for the full time working pro. Or event he part timer but has a serious show.
Message: Posted by: Magic Blinds (Feb 12, 2005 05:24AM)

I know very little about DMX. I have found a winamp plugin at:


If anyone wants to downloaded it might be useful to someone. I believe it can cue your music and lights together.
Message: Posted by: Ray Thompson (Feb 20, 2005 01:14PM)
Absolutely, have the sound tech simply mute you. Most of my shows are corporate banquet room setups with me providing the sound equipment and everything else. When I don't want the audience hearing what I might be saying I simply hit the mute switch on my transmiter. Which, by the way, I keep in s pocket where I can easily get at it.
further BTW: I am using a Show Tech to both control a MD player and two light trees. I program different sound and lighting for each effect. it has really added a lot when dealing with the usuallighting in motel banquet rooms.
Message: Posted by: johnsterlini (Mar 1, 2005 09:03AM)
Yes, this is possible. Although I'm not an electronics wiz, nor a DMX wiz, I know this is possible. I am currently working with a couple people to design something at a reason cost for myself. There is a however a commercially available product which will do this and control other music related source via DMX. I lost the link for the site as a virus recently wiped out my computer. I do know, however, it is being carried in the US by Lepprecon lighting, in Michigan. It's not cheap-about $1,200. Awesome unit!

A simple solution would be to have the DMX signal sent to servo control board that could either raise or lower the volume. The servo would be attached to your mixing board. Or it could be attached to your mute button (if your mixer is equipped). Low tech, but it would work

What I'm trying to do is have the DMX signal sent to a mute box. The mics input would be connected with an output to your mixing board. Think of it as a light switch in your home. There is a commercially available product called a Cough Box (check out Guitar Center of Musician's Friend) which is basically an on / off switch mounted in a foot controlled box. (OOOH IDEA! Just thinking about it, the above servo idea could be used with the Cough Box unit easily with a cost of about $175 - I might try this!!!!!) Anyway, basically, take this box and wire a DMX board to send a signal to the Cough Boxes switch. Obviously, there would need to be something to eliminate the pop sound of the signal being turned on and off.

I've been doing this for several years with my Showtech. Kerry custom wired some options for me. I run music, lighting, fog and my mic with my Showtech. It's awesome!!!!! I am however selling it as I really need a larger system

You may contact me directly, john@sterlini.com. I am hoping to have something available soon.

If anyone else can help, please let me know.