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Topic: Poor Man’s Remote Control Sound Cue
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jun 25, 2004 01:19PM)
“Poor Man’s Remote Control Sound Cue”.


The following is my opinion/advice, I am not getting any money by endorsing any products, websites or software.

I have learned a lot of valuable information from members of this forum so I wanted to add something that will be valuable to someone. Personally I don’t have the $2,000.00 for a SoundTech or money for the other MiniDisc systems which range in the hundreds. I call this the “Poor Man’s Remote Control Sound Cue”, personally I spent about $75.00 on my system plus my time.

If you are interested in the MiniDisc systems check out the other threads in this forum but here is an option.

Recently I bought a laptop to control my own music via a computer. I read and dissected Jeff Haas webpage on the topic. Here is my experience and my set-up and advice based on his information located at http://members.tripod.com/remotelaptop/

I bought a low end 133 MHz speed laptop for $60.00 on EBAY about 3 months ago. When I got the laptop I deleted all the programs and files that I did not need. Of course you can get a higher MHZ speed laptop but it costs more. If you know how to wipe out Windows and reinstall it, do it.

Anyhow I installed the new “lite” version of WINAMP 5 for FREE. I also bought an IR (Infra) remote control from Creative Labs for $11.98, which is the same size as a credit card. Plus it includes software that controls Winamp, no programming. It stops, plays, forward, rewind, volume up, volume down, fast forward, pause, rewind. The range of the remote is about 20 feet, sight vision. I bought mine from http://www.tekgems.com they also carry other remotes.

Note: Type “remote control creative labs” in any browser such as yahoo or google to bring up websites that sell the item, price compare. All of the websites will say that it is compatible with WinAmp 2.0 only, but Winamp 5.0, the current program recognizes the 2.0 Winamp language and plug-ins, the remote works.

Another remote route will be RF (radio frequency) remote will run you about $60 or more if you go that route. Jeff Haas recommends a programmable keyfob RF remote that is a little costly but gets the job done. Personally I wanted to experiment with the laptop system and the economical IR remote to see if it was my style. Currently I am window-shopping for an RF remote.

If the Creatives Labs remote or any other remotes fail, which happens even in RF ones and the minidisk systems, just go to the laptop and Press the “V” key on the keyboard to STOP. The “X” key is for Play and other keys do the rest of the other functions. Put stickers on the keyboard to remember. But in the past 3 months the Creative Labs remote has Not failed me yet. But with my Winamp cue behavior it plays a track and stops.

Additionally I downloaded Free plug-ins like “Next On Stop” which forwards to the next track when you hit Stop or the tracks ends. I also got “Enhancer” plugin a mixer, which tweaks audio to give you a better sound, it adjusts the lows, mids and highs and it is also Free. Additionally WINAMP has other plugins for Free such as compressors, equalizers, reverbs, sound effects, limiters, gates and misc. Your basically savings thousands in audio equipment, a sound tech and getting it for FREE.

Winamp also has its own built customizable equaliser and the ability to play “Playlist”. I copied all my MP3 of my different shows in a folder and I use Playlists for sound cues. To learn “Playlist” download Winamp 5 and mess around with it. Editing lists and creating lists is easy.

I also increased the size of the Playlist, which now makes my laptop a Prompter. I named my MP3s after the effect. Instead of seeing, track 1, track 9. I see, levitation, sub trunk, snow storm and other file names. I also sometimes add an empty audio track between songs to remind myself of jokes, lines or any information.

Another great part of Winamp is the Fader, instead of the sound stopping obtrusively you set the music to fade away which makes it sounds like you have a sound tech adjusting the sound. The Fader can fade in the start of the music, the end, when you hit pause or stop and others.


Here is how I set up CUE behavior:

Go to File-à Optionsà PreferencesàPlaylist, and then deselected “Manual Playlist advance”. By unchecking on that box, Winamp will stop after every track and/or when you hit STOP and NOT Play the next track, it is manual. Then with the “Next On Stop” plug-in, when it receives a Stop command it will forward to the next track BUT it won’t play until you press Play it will be cued. Hope that makes sense.

Furthermore the laptop has an audio-in and an audio-out. In the audio-in you can connect a microphone, to set that up, look it up on the net. Then in the audio-out buy some cheap high watt computer speakers to blast to the show. Go to Circuit City or some computer store so that you can blast them and hear them before you buy.

If you got the cash buy a portable PA system, see threads for this. Or the laptop can be plugged into most PA systems, DJ systems, just buy the appropriate audio-out connectors like the stereo to XLR and/or stereo to ¼ inch.

Finally most huge amusement parks run their sounds thru computers, huge concert also use computers, David Copperfield uses computers to run sound. Not to long ago you needed to spend thousands in audio equipment, equalizers, mixers, pre-amps, lighting controls, effects racks, compressors, limiters and misc. equipment. Now it is all contained in computers.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: MikeJRogers (Jun 25, 2004 05:38PM)
G0thike,

I've been doing the EXACT same thing since the start of this year.

The Creative Remote, I believe is GREAT! Even though it's IR it still works real well. I saw it on EBAY and hadn't seen it mentioned here but I took the risk purchasing one and it worked great for show control.

Others should give this a shot if your looking for a cheaper but still good quality system.

Great minds think alike g0thike!

Mike
Message: Posted by: Regan (Jun 26, 2004 08:17AM)
Sounds like a good idea. I may give it a shot.

Could you play cd's on a system like this through the cd-rom drive? Would the remote control work the same way?

Regan
Message: Posted by: MikeJRogers (Jun 26, 2004 08:31AM)
Sure will.
Message: Posted by: Regan (Jun 26, 2004 03:47PM)
Sounds great!..or does it? Will high wattage speakers really generate enough sound...for say, a school auditorium or gymnasium?
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jun 27, 2004 06:20PM)
You can play a CD from the CD-ROm but it will have a little delay since the CD player has to start spinning.

I recommend that you convert the audio to MP3's and put them in your harddrive.

That Creative Remote works and I actually own 3 of them. I carry the other 2 just incase.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jun 28, 2004 01:45AM)
G0thike, it's great to see that you're getting some use out of the info on my web page. It's rewarding to hear about people who took what I wrote up and did something with it.

The Creative remote looks like a good one to start out with. Eventually, as you do bigger shows, I think you'll want to upgrade to the RF remote I use, because you can keep it in your pocket and press the button through the cloth. This allows you to trigger cues in the middle of a routine without having to pull out the remote. But if you're getting good use out of what you've got now, go for it!

Mister Mystery, if you have big enough speakers, you can fill a school gym. I have a set of the Fender Passport 250s. These are 250 watts total, with a big amp that drives the two speakers.

Recently I did a show in a local elementary school gym/multipurpose room. There were about 300 people there, and the Passport system filled the room with ease, and it wasn't even turned up all the way.

The speakers simply amplify what is put into them. The remote-controlled computer system is just an easy way to set up a bunch of sound cues and trigger them. And now that older laptops are so inexpensive, you can set up a starter system for less than $100.00, which is so much cheaper than when I first did it a few years back.

Then, when you get your system put together, you'll learn the hard part isn't triggering the cues...it's picking just the right music for the moments in your act.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jun 28, 2004 12:03PM)
Mister,

High watt speakers might fill up a school gym or auditorium. Personally I have used my computer speakers for smaller shows and I connect my microphone into the microphone input of my laptop and it works fine. I would seriously go to a Circuit City, COMPUSA or other computer store and use their high watt speakers and blast them and see how far and loud the sound travels.

Personally for gym or larger shows I use a Fender Passport 250 PD (make sure it is PD that is the digital one) if you shop around you can pick one up for about $750.00. Look it up on the web or on EBAY for more info.

Jeff,

Thanks for your webpage, it saved me several hundreds of dollars. I was considering a minidisk system but the laptop works better in my opinion. Since I have some computer skills I was able to put together the system and make it work in less than 30 minutes.

I like the key fob that you recommend but I am looking for a key fob or credit card size remote that has at least 7 buttons. I would like a small RF remote that I can assign the keys Play, Stop, Pause, Fwd, Rew, Volume Up, Volume Down, without having to press and assign key combinations.

The Creative Remote has all the buttons that I need, since it is IR I just stand closer to the laptop, but my assistant usually runs the sound herself from the remote. I just carry a spare remote in my pocket just in case.

I looked into some remote that are X10 but I had no idea if they would work. I am not that TECH smart. If anyone knows about X10 or about a programmable key fob or credit card size 7 button or more button RF remote control that is programmable for WINAMP let us know?

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: CamelotFX (Jun 28, 2004 03:00PM)
The more RAM (random access memory) the computer has, the better this "Poor Man's System" works. Most newer machines can hold 512 meg of RAM (or more!) and it's cheap: 15 to 20 cents a meg! A 256M upgrade is around $50.
Having maximum RAM allows Winamp to load the entire playlist into RAM and it will play immediately with absolutely no "lag" or delay and no need to "swap in" from the slow hard drive or even slower CD. I've been using this technique in live theater for years for sound effects and even music.
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jun 28, 2004 04:16PM)
G0thike,

After using the system for awhile, I found I only need two commands:

- Play next cue
- Stop and fade out the current cue

Most of the cues in my show are set up so I play them and they're just long enough. The only ones I need to stop are the "audience member comes up on stage" cues, because you don't know how long a kid is going to take to get up from his seat and join you onstage. So those cues are longer than I need, and I cut them off when appropriate.

I found adjusting the volume with the remote isn't as effective as doing it on the speaker system. That's because the remote will only control the computer's output, which has limited range, and when you're using the Fender Passports, you really need to tweak their volume control to fit the room.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: Regan (Jun 28, 2004 05:06PM)
Thanks GOTHIKE.

Sounds like it's worth checking into.

Regan
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jun 28, 2004 05:29PM)
Jeff,

I use all the buttons since I always have different sets, music and add material on the spot. I usually get a feel for the audience while performing and if they are a fun happy crowd I do certain effects that require certain songs.

When I get the “I am bombing” or “the show is dragging” feel I skip certain parts. I can honestly say even though I have been performing for years to all sorts of venues and audiences, I can’t pick my audience and make them behave a certain way. I just get feelings and know when to add and delete effects or cut the show short. I love it when I press stop and play but my shows about 75% of the time require forward and rewind. Audiences are unpredictable.

I also use the Volume up and down to control WINAMP’s volume. I have certains effects like a sword suspension and snow animator that make noise.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jun 29, 2004 02:37PM)
I get it, now I see why you'd need all those commands. When I do a standup gig, I really don't feel comfortable improvising the order of the show, but that's just me.

Glad it works so well for you!

Jef
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Jul 1, 2004 03:23PM)
Thanks for the info guys. I bought six laptops off of ebay last year after reading Jeff's information. This is a much better price break for getting started. On my way to Ebay now.

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jul 8, 2004 01:21PM)
UPDATE:

PLAYLIST (Prompter) CUSTOMIZER

I use my laptop as a prompter, but I never liked the default Winamp green color since it was sometimes hard to see when it was sunny. I searched and finally found a plug-in which is called WPT. That plugin allows you to fully customize the playlist look and feel. It will change the color of the background of the playlist, you can change the font size, type of font, font color and others. It is one of those WOW programs.

Go to http://www.winamp.com then in the right side of the webpage is a search function, select Plug-in then type in WPT and hit search. When it pops-up, download the plugin on your desktop.

It is simple to use, just double click on it and play with it. To see changes just hit the “Save” button at the bottom of the WPT program. Then close WINAMP if it is open and start it. Simple.

If anyone can add anything positive to this thread be my guest.

G0THIKE

UPDATE:

So I sat today thinking about the Café Members from other countries. The WPT plugin mentioned above will allow you to change the font of the playlist. Just make sure your particular language font is load in your computer.

Another great plug-in is called Fontplug20 it changes the color/size/font of the title bar. The Title Bar is above the Play/Stop/ReWind etc buttons on WINAMP. With Fontplug20 you can also switch to your particular language.

To change the name of the mp3 track/song that appears in the playlist, just select any Mp3 track and right click on it. Then select “View File Info” and change it to the desired name.
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jul 9, 2004 12:01AM)
G0thike, those are some great tips!

Do you mind if I incorporate them into the next update of my page (whenever that is)?

Jeff
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jul 9, 2004 02:52AM)
Jeff,

You can copy the text word for word if you want. Go ahead and use all or any of the tips I gave. The original information is yours anyway.

Any other useful tips I run into, I'll post in this thread.

G0THIKE

UPDATE July 14, 2004

I got some Private Messages and here are some answers and notes.

The Plugin WPT only works with Windows 98 and above operating systems, that includes 2000 and XP. If you got Windows 95, WPT won’t work, the solution is to update the operating system.

If you do an outside show and it is sunny, direct sunlight on the laptop display is not good for the computer, plus it is harder to see the screen since it is so bright. The solution to this problem is to house the laptop, get some black cardboard or black material such as plastic and cut down 3 walls, 2 for the sides and 1 for the top, use Velcro to put them together. The walls will shade the screen making it easier to see.

For an external LCD display (which is the new toy available in the minidisk systems) go to winamp.com and download one of the plugin’s . I have not used the plugin’s or do I plan to, I also have not bought the LCD display required to test it. You are on your own. But it will work.

Anyone have anything POSITIVE to say, maybe your experience with this system and not a sales pitch for a minidisk system, please do so.
Message: Posted by: shawn popp (Jul 20, 2004 01:09AM)
Anyone out there using a Macintosh? I have a powerbook titanium with a 30GB hard drive. I've run music for my show from the laptop but currently there is no software with the fade feature. The 2-3 times I used my laptop, my assistant ran ran the audio and adjusted the volume appropriately using a Griffin Tech. jog dial. I am still searching for a WinAmp equivelant for the mac. Anyone?
Message: Posted by: Natural Mystic (Jul 20, 2004 01:43AM)
Shawn Griffin,

Here's a link on Jeff Haas site,

http://members.tripod.com/remotelaptop/Links___Info/links___info.html

Look for the link to a free download of MPLAY for the MAC.

One Love!
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jul 20, 2004 01:29PM)
Shawn, let me know if MPlay does what you need.

I think the software has changed, but I don't have a Mac to check it out and see. When I put the link up, his webpage listed the right features, but the webpage is organized differently now.

If you can verify the Mac solution, it would be great.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jul 20, 2004 02:22PM)
UPDATE: July 19, 2004



WINAMP FOR MAC

File here:
http://download.nullsoft.com/winamp...ampMac-0.71.sit
OR
http://www.download.com/3302-2199-5874677.html

I am don’t have a MAC so I don’t know how the software behaves.


STACKER:

Sometimes when you download multiple DSP effect and plug-in it cause winamp to misbehave, it could be because of software conflicts. The plug-in “Multiple Stacker” will allow you to stack several effects or plug-ins at once without winamp problems. There are also other stackers available, I just use the one I mentioned. Others can be found with a simple search at winamp.com of the term “stacker”


DMX LIGHT SHOW CONTROL:

I discovered a new Plug-in called “DMX 512 Light Show” which controls/ques lights and others with WINAMP per track thru the DMX protocol. I have not tested the plug-in and it is the only DMX winamp plug-in I have noticed. It is currently above my understanding since I don’t do lights for concerts or clubs. The plug-in works with Window 98 and above. Its Free and it might save someone in this Café some money.

However if someone does test it and it works, let us know.

Here is the description of the website:

DMX-512 is the Lighting industry standard protocol to control intelligent lights, smoke machines, strobos, dimmers and more... With this Plug-In add-on by Manuel Martin based upon the original program and interface called DMXDONGLE and DMXDESK9 made by Kristof Nys (that was so kind to open the source code http://users.skynet.be/kristofnys/) you will have total control of your DMX-512 staff and total synchronization with music and video thanks to WinAmp. If WinAmp can play it, you can add to your music or video playback...lights, motor control, pyrotechnics and anything that you can control with your DMX-512 dimmer.

NOTE:
Go to:
http://users.skynet.be/kristofnys/
That page contains schematics and software to build your own cheap 64 channel DMX 512 printerport interface.It also contains the schematics for a 4-way DMX booster / splitter and a 12 channel DMX flasher.These designs are based on Microchip Pic 16F84 microcontrollers and very easy to build
Go to:
http://webs.ono.com/usr044/MegaTech/index.htm (Manuel Martin’s Site)

He designed the plug-in and will show you how to make a 256 Channel DMX. And has other valuable information.
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Jul 20, 2004 04:39PM)
GOTHIKE:

Tried the plug-in search for WPT on winamp.com and it came back with Sorry, your search returned no results. Did they discontinue the file or did I do something wrong.

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jul 20, 2004 04:55PM)
MagiciaPirate,

I e-mailed the WPT plugin to your account. Sometimes WINAMP.com is clogged with traffic and the search feature messes up, I think that is what is happening.

G0thike

WINAMP SEARCH FEATURE

So I messed around with the search feature of winamp that is located in the upper right hand on the site. To be able to search for plug-ins you have to select PLUG-IN from the drop down menu next to the SEARCH lettering and hit the GO button but leave the FOR box blank. That’ll take you to the plug-ins page. Kinda weird, but it is how it works.

Now when your in the plugin page, it will have other features to the left side bar such as DSP, General, Most Downloaded and other. Now when you type WPT or any other plug-in name in the search box and plugin is selected in the drop down menu and you hit GO, it will show the searched plugin as a result.

G0THIKE

I got a few Private Messages from people asking about the plugins I have mentioned, they are sometimes hard to find. So I created a ZIP folder with the plugins that I will e-mail to anyone that e-mails me.


g0thike@aol.com

Download the ZIP, if you don't trust me, scan it for viruses then read my above posts about the plugins and use them.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Aug 23, 2004 11:40AM)
Great work and kudos to you guys. We all know that the future is in this form of control rather than a dedicated system.

Remember the Brother word processors? - now your computer
Portable DVD player - Now Laptops
FAX machines - Computers
CD duplicators $$$ Dedicated - Now Computer
Polaroid Camera - Computer and printer
Slide Projector - Computer PowerPoint (best example)

Show Music Controller--Now (Haas, Gothike) - Laptop!

I saw a demo of someone who is doing the music on a laptop splitscreen with show dialog and jokes repeatedly scrolling on the top side with the bottom screen (music cue) held like a web frame. It was a teleprompter and MP3 player made in this configuration.
Click on an effect (sword cabinet) and the music starts as you are fed lines that may be forgotten. How cool is that.
Message: Posted by: Interad (Aug 23, 2004 05:09PM)
Thanks to GOTHIKE for the great info. I've got my system up and running. I found a place to find the Next on Stop plug-in (I couldn't locate it on Winamp's site) as well as other plug-ins. You can find them at http://www.daz.ne1.net
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Aug 24, 2004 01:44PM)
E-mail me at

G0thike@aol.com

I can send you all the plugins that I have talked about in a zip file.

G0thike

WPT plug
http://www.winamp.com/plugins/details.php?id=94688

Enhancer Sound Processor
http://www.i-adrian.home.ro/


Next On Stop
http://www.nunzioweb.com/daz/nos.html
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Sep 2, 2004 08:43PM)
Since you guys have the experience:

Have any of you used the dedicated systems and migrated to this way?
If so, what do you like better in this computer configuration than the VSM Virtual Soundman, the awesome Stagecue or the cream of the crop Showtech?
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Sep 9, 2004 03:28PM)
Glod,

Here is my experience, I have used the ShowTech but have not used the VSM or StageCue. The reason I migrated to the laptop system is several factors:

1) It cost way less, actually hundreds of dollars less. Compared to the ShowTech thousands less.
2) I am comfortable with WinAmp and have been using it for years.
3) I am sorta computer literate, well enough to set my laptop up.
4) I use the laptop screen as a Screen Prompter. I could look at the screen and know what is next in my show. Or remind me of a joke.
5) Winamp has a Equaliser to adjust sound. Which fixes the sound. Saves you cash on an equalizer.
6) I can control DMX lights to sound cues. But I don’t have DMX controllers.
7) WinAmp “plugins” can make an MP3 sound almost CD quality and other options.
8) I have ALL my music, about 50 tracks, in easy to do and edit, on the spot PLAYLISTS
9) I can hook up a Remote Control to it, an RF or IR, depending on my budjet.
10) If I want I can hook up a LCD to it. I still havn’t done that, but I can.
11) Can set-up the CUE behavior to whatever I want. Make it STOP at the end of a track and Forward to next track but Not plat it as an example.
12) I can disconnect the remote receiver and connect an EARTHMATE GPS ($130 retail) receiver, which will turn my laptop into a GPS system, in case I get lost.
13) I can hook-up a Cell Phone to it, log on to the net, check my e-mail, driving directions. Connect to the MagicCafe.
14) And Others

My advice is this, convert your music to MP3’s, download WinAmp 5, buy that Creative Remote IR and use it on your regular Desktop computer and play around with it for a while.

If you like it, then buy a laptop and a RF remote. The total cost for this experiment would be around $10.00 for the remote and your time and effort. Just read my posts on this thread. If you hate it then you only spent $10.00. If you need the Plug-ins just E-mail me.

Currently I just ordered a RF remote and I will post my review.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Ashkenazi the Pretty Good (Feb 17, 2005 04:59AM)
OK - I have this "whacky" idea.

Isn't there a "Portable MP3 Player" or combination MP3 player/CD player with a small remote control?

Hell of a lot cheaper and easier than all of this stuff. Edit your music tracks on your computer, burn a cd, and voila! And for maybe 75 bucks! Anybody recommend a specific model with the best remote control device for our evil purposes?

ATPT
Message: Posted by: Majiloon (Feb 17, 2005 10:45AM)
Ashkenazi-

The iCueiPod doe this- but not for bucks...

Cheers,
KD
Message: Posted by: itsmagic (Feb 19, 2005 01:44AM)
What kinda of laptop can you get for $60?

Can you use the RF remote controller to work with any portable CD player?
Message: Posted by: Majiloon (Feb 19, 2005 03:27PM)
Hello- "itsmagic"

Yes "the RF remote" will work with any Sony CD player that has a headphone socket installed- which is almost anyone out there now...

KD
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Feb 20, 2005 12:32PM)
We are very excited about the iCue Kelly!
Because he can't blow his own horn in this section and I am in no way connected with him go over to:

http://www.virtualsoundman.com/order.html#LVicueipod.html

It is the long awaited iPod controller from Virtual Soundman. I own and use a competing product called the Stagecue for iPod but still have interest in Kelly's product because it appears to have some of the features of the mini VSM. If you need a Beta-Tester Kelly give me a PM :)
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 21, 2005 04:41AM)
My review of the RF remote on Keith Rubow’s webpage.

So I bought the RF remote from a web page from a guy who sells them to dance groups, I assume he is a break-dancer.

Here is a link to his site:
http://home.earthlink.net/~krubowc4/Products.htm

The website is not the most complicated design and I e-mailed the guy before I ordered it and he answered all my questions very promptly. I had the package in 3 days.

The package comes with software, a receiver and transmitter and advice plus he answers any email questions.

The remote uses some Free software called “IRAssistant”, which had me confused since the remote is RF but it works with RF & IR. It piggy backs on WINAMP. The remote runs on its own battery, the battery should last a few years. The receiver gets its power thru the laptop.

This is how it works in layman’s terms, the buttons on the remote are pressed and IRAssistant generates keystrokes. Keystrokes are keys in your keyboard that are pressed, it is like pressing the keys “Control + P” which in a lot of software is the shortcut to PRINT. So one button can be assigned for whichever functions of WINAMP such as Play, Stop, Pause, Forward, Rewind and others, the remote is fully programmable. In WINAMP they are called HOTKEYS. You have to spend some time learning how to program the remote with IRAssistant but the directions supplied with the remote will help. Any questions just PM me or e-mail Keith Rubow.


ANKLE SWITCH:

I called Kelly from Virtual Soundman and spoke to him on the phone about customizing Keith Rubow’s remote with an ankle switch and he quoted me $800.00

I then called Joe Leskar and he quoted me $100.00. A $700.00 savings.

Ashkenazi,

You can always get a CD player boombox, they do come with a IR remote control. My advice was for a cheaper alternative than the VSM, ShowTech and other MiniDisk piggy backers.

ItsMagic,

I am not sure what deal you can get for $60.00, you might be able to score a decent laptop on EBAY. My current laptop is an old Dell 133Mhz, running Windows 95 and it works well with WINAMP and my purposes.

Be careful on EBAY though and read the description of the products sold. They sometimes sell Laptops with No harddrives or other components.

Any other info just ask me or Jeff Haas.
Message: Posted by: Tim Zager (Feb 22, 2005 02:05PM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-19 16:27, Majiloon wrote:
Hello- "itsmagic"

Yes "the RF remote" will work with any Sony CD player that has a headphone socket installed- which is almost anyone out there now...

KD
[/quote]

Hi Kelly, I'm not clear what you mean here. Are you talking about *your* remote that works with your VSM systems?

Tim
Message: Posted by: Majiloon (Feb 22, 2005 08:53PM)
Thanks Walter(Glod)
We waited on the iPod 4th generation- which incidentally can accompany a laptop- for your shows…
This Poor mans remote is a novel way to accomplish music for your act- I’m sure that everyone can evaluate the practicality of such an idea for themselves. I do, however like the idea of a large screen showing the track number, hmmm

Hi Tim-
Yes- I meant my remote,(while trying not to be obvious)-as well as the Show Tech, and Mini Tech use the same ‘socket interface’ commonly found on these Walkman for the wired remote plug-in along with the headphone- for the CD, MD, and HDD players-
Making for ultra compatibility, durability, portability, and practicality all in one.

I do not recommend a I(infra) R(Red) IR remote- this will not work out doors or on a stage. This is silly advice- as the IR requires line of sight- and carries the signal via light patterns- which becomes completely vulnerable to all manner of light. IR was made for close up (auto) applications, or your living room.
If you were to use IR for your show- then you would stop what you are doing – point- and move toward the receiver until it gets the signal- which completely defeats the purpose of having a “remote control” in the first place.
Whereas R(radio) F(frequency) RF uses omni-directional commands and does not require strange body shapes for reception. But then there is good RF and not so good RF…

Cheers,
Kelly Duro
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 22, 2005 09:50PM)
Kelly, Glod & others,

As much as I respect your advice on RF remotes, IPods, VSM, and even though it is a Free country. I created this thread as an alternative to the VSM, and others like the StageCue, Showtech. It is meant for the average joe that has a small limited budget. The FX forum has many threads where your advice will be relevant. I did mention this in this thread just read a few posts up.

Secondly I recommended an IR remote to ITSMagic since he is on a budget, which is why I created this thread. He is asking how good is a $60.00 dollar laptop. He also wants a CD player remote. Common sense will tell you he has no money, no dinero.

My advice it may be novel but it works. The laptop tells me more than track numbers, I name all my music mp3’s after the effects such as levitation, dove act, subtrunk, etc. Just read the whole thread and you can see what is possible with a laptop and more.

The remote I recommend is from Keith Rubow for $60.00 and I found out about his products thru Jeff Haas webpage. His webpage is the basis of this thread.

Kelly’s VSM is not a “Poorman’s Remote Control Sound Cue”, it is a $700 VSM plus $150 for a minidisk or $250 for an IPOD. My figures may be off.

Anyhow, please, if you can read the title of this thread. If you have anything valuable to say about the laptop system please post. Such as your experience, likes and dislikes, advice on software, Winamp plugins, etc,
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Feb 23, 2005 09:40PM)
G0thika
Sorry to get off topic. I am sincerely interested in the laptop and INEXPENSIVE MP3 player remote solutions thread and did not mean to contaminate it.
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 24, 2005 01:37AM)
Glod,

No problem, I just didn’t want a bunch of posts from people saying “I have the Showtech” or “I love the VSM”, or “I only use the StageCue”.

I am not knocking their products, if you have the cash go ahead and search the MagicCafe for topics. Maybe you’ll buy one.

I feel some people that read this thread will see the ideas, download WINAMP, get the remote and off they go.

In the other hand some people that are not that computer literate will turn away into another direction.

Bottom line is you can download WINAMP for FREE, spend $10.00 bucks on a IR remote from Creative Labs, and you can “Test Drive” controlling cues with a regular desktop computer.

Then if you feel this something you want, then buy a laptop and the RF remote I recommend.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Regan (Feb 24, 2005 11:09AM)
Someone asked above about an RF remote for a minidisc player. I'm still not clear on this issue. Is there a way to buy a remote that will controll the minidisc funtions. I am talking about the whole VSM or similar system, just a wireless remote that would replace the wired remote unit on Sony minidisc player/recorders. Until I can afford a VSM or Stagecue, I would just like to have a remote that would start and stop songs.

Is this possible?

Thanks,

Regan
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 25, 2005 02:27AM)
Regan,

What brand is your Mini Disc? I could see what I come up with.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Feb 25, 2005 05:33AM)
I'm interested in the same thing: an RF remote to control my Sony CD player. Someone posted above that there was an RF remote that worked through a Sony CD player's headphone jack.
My CD player has an IR remote and I don't like using is much, but an RF would be a godsend to the way I'm working right now! Thanks.

Jim
Message: Posted by: Regan (Feb 25, 2005 06:41AM)
I have a Sony MZ-NH900 minidisk player/recorder on order.
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 25, 2005 09:08AM)
The following are products that I want people to be aware of, I don’t have them, so if you buy them and they work let us know. If they suck also let us know.

IPOD RF REMOTE FOR $40.00- $50.00 bucks
I read this article at:

http://www.engadget.com/entry/1234000520026578/

They mention an RF IPOD remote for $40.00 bucks that you can buy at the following address.

http://www.griffintechnology.com/products/airclick/index.php


Another article I read is at:

http://www.engadget.com/entry/1234000327026993

It can be ordered at:

http://www.solidsignal.com/prod_display.asp?CAT=Remote%20Control&PROD=IJET

Personally I don’t have these products or an Ipod.



CONVERTING AN IR (infra red signal) REMOTE TO RF (radio frequency) Remote for $49.99

Visit this site for a remote extender, it converts the IR signal to RF so you can have an RF on your existing CD player remote, Boom box or if your Mini Disc has a remote it should covert the signal. Please note that your audio equipment must use a remote since it must have a receiver. If you lost the remote you can get a Universal Remote and program it.

http://www.solidsignal.com/prod_display.asp?CAT=Remote%20Control&PROD=LRRX

James in La,

Look into an IR to RF convertor.

The person that posted about a CD player RF remote is Majiloon who is Kelly the owner/maker or VSM, Virtual Sound Man. Private Message him, he might have a solution for you. I am not sure about his prices.

Regan,

I'll see what I can come up with. You might also want to send a message to Kelly.
Message: Posted by: bloodyjack (Feb 25, 2005 11:49AM)
This is cool RF control of ipod for 40 bucks they even have a usb one for PC for 50 bucks. This will RF control your i-pod and your laptop I am ordering one
http://www.griffintechnology.com/products/airclick/index.php
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Feb 25, 2005 05:45PM)
Thanks a metric ton. This information is really exciting.

Jim
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Feb 26, 2005 12:41AM)
Hi all

I happen to be the product manager and one of the engineers of the AirClick RF remote for the iPod. It seems no company is developing solutions specifically for performers using an iPod, and I would highly recommend you take a look at our AirClick product at http://griffintechnology.com/products/airclick/index.php

We work closely with Apple, know all the iPod's remote protocols, so you can be assured that this product will not let you down in the middle of your show.

It's $40 and has a very small remote with a clip, and works up to 60ft. (realistically, 35-40).

We are also seriously considering adding some performance features, where you can control any of the iPod's functions, such as pause between songs, etc. soon. That way, you could build a playlist and add any specific command you might need for your show.

This will not be implemented in the first shipping version of the AirClick, and I would like to hear some feedback regarding what you would like to see in a remote audio performance solution.

We also are making an RF USB dongle, where you can control your computer remotely, so if you want to control your songs during a performance with, say, a laptop, this would be ideal.

We will be shipping in approx. 4 weeks.

The AirClick comes in three versions, one for iPod (dock connector), one for iPod mini, and the USB dongle that works on both Macs and PCs.

If you have any suggestons or want more info, PM me, or email me at jason@griffintechnology.com

And yes, I'm a magician.

Take care

Jason
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Feb 26, 2005 02:02AM)
Jason,
You said the remote doesn't control all the iPod functions, like pause? What iPod functions does the remote control?
Thanks,
Jim
Message: Posted by: malini (Feb 26, 2005 02:41AM)
Hey Jason.

This is all great news, and thanks for the extra information.

I'll ask a stupid question about the AirClick RF remote control for the Ipod-Mini. Do either the Ipod-mini or the AirClick RF Remote have to be hooked up to a power outlet for everything to work? Or does it all run off battery power (from the ipod-mini?).

I ask because I often use my Ipod-mini and Sound System in shows where there is no nearby power outlet, and it all runs of battery power.


-malini.
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Feb 26, 2005 03:09AM)
Jim
[quote]
You said the remote doesn't control all the iPod functions, like pause? What iPod functions does the remote control?[/quote]

The remote has 5 buttons:

Play/Pause (press once to play, press again to pause)
Volume Up
Volume Down
Next Song (If you hold the button down, it will fast forward the song)
Previous Song (If you hold the button down, it will rewind the song)

Thanks for the interest

Jason

Malini

[quote]Do either the Ipod-mini or the AirClick RF Remote have to be hooked up to a power outlet for everything to work? Or does it all run off battery power (from the ipod-mini?). [/quote]

The AirClick receiver draws power from the iPod, so no other power is required. The receiver does go into sleep mode after a period of inactivity as to not drain the iPod's battery, but, of course, wakes up immediately.

The remote has a battery, but it lasts an estimated bajillion years.

Take care

Jason
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 26, 2005 07:33AM)
Jason,

Im glad that your a Café Member, is the USB remote going to eventually support WINAMP. You should read this whole thread and maybe you'll get some ideas.

Also, can the AirClick control a MiniDisk player? I read a rumor in some forum.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Feb 26, 2005 11:07AM)
When is availability Jason?
This appears to be exactly what we as magicians have been looking for. iPods have just annouced a price drop (just under 200. ) on the 4G model so your product at 40. this truly is a high performance "Poor mans remote control cue" system at way less than dedicated control systems.
Message: Posted by: Majiloon (Feb 26, 2005 08:40PM)
Walter-
These little $40 iPod remotes are junk- none of the 3 manufacturers know anything about stage environemnts or the challeges for the live performer- so you will not have the features you need- and the dependability that is required for your live performance.

Aside from that-these remotes are model specific- they very well may not be compatible with the next generation iPod. THey use an interface that is cloned from the inteface of the recent iPod. unfortunately- iPod has a bad habit of changing the interface - 3 changes in the last 5 versions that they introduce. So if you get a new iPod in a year- there is not gaurunty that this remote you buy now will work.

All three of these units use a OEM keybob transmitter that I have already worked with and could design a reciever to match it with the power rating they use for the receiver- for $40- but - but its still junk-

This is just a AM cheap-out remote that is in no way appropriate for the professional-
It does not have the features required - nor do they have the power to handle the job.
If you want more specifics- then you can give me a call- but I will not educate these poeple by publishing a lesson plan on line.

Cheers-
Kelly Duro
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 26, 2005 10:11PM)
Kelly,

The name of this thread is "Poor Man’s Remote Control Sound Cue" which means an affordable way to cue your own sound. Some of us magicians are starving students, hobbyist, doing birthday parties to make some money to pay the bills or broke. We can not afford your VSM and for the magicians that may get one stage show a year your device is not an option.

If I had a National Tour or Vegas contract, I would buy your VSM, actually I would have a sound guy. I know the remotes are AM since they are small but it is radio frequencies and it’s a step up from IR. I also know that I can’t stand 100 feet and trigger a cue but I will settle for 30-60 feet, depending on any interference. Your remote is FM and a better signal, design and other stuff but I personally don’t have $800.00 to send to your bank account.

As for the $40.00 Griffin Technology IPod RF remote, If it can trigger an IPOD at 30 feet I am a happy camper. It may not have auto fade, an LCD display, all the bells and whistles but I am happy.

Maybe Jason will fill us in on the changing IPOD Interface? Jason?

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: G. Batson (Feb 27, 2005 10:24AM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-26 21:40, Majiloon wrote:
Walter-
These little $40 iPod remotes are junk- none of the 3 manufacturers know anything about stage environemnts or the challeges for the live performer- so you will not have the features you need- and the dependability that is required for your live performance.
[/quote]

Pretty bold statement coming from someone who has never even used one.

[quote]
Aside from that-these remotes are model specific- they very well may not be compatible with the next generation iPod.
[/quote]

Let's wait to find out before making such a statement.


[quote]
So if you get a new iPod in a year- there is not gaurunty that this remote you buy now will work.
[/quote]

I'll spend another $40 if needed to "upgrade". Your system offers no such upgrade. I would have to ditch the initial investment and start all over with your stuff. Showtek allows an upgrade path to retain your initial investment.

[quote]
This is just a AM cheap-out remote that is in no way appropriate for the professional-
[/quote]

Hmmm. I thought you also sold AM remotes.

And I agree with the originator of this thread. There are plenty people reading this that could benefit.

G. (wondering why Kelly always thinks *his* is the only solution???)
Message: Posted by: bloodyjack (Feb 27, 2005 10:55AM)
M R 2 guy
I woild like to see your response to this slam.
looking on the web site the RF frequency used is 433.92MHz
This is more than likly FM, anyway I would trust a product that
is being sold to the masses more than I would something from a small independant maufacturer for the magic community.
There are very tough FCC laws on RF and EMC and this product will have been through all these tests.
Does the other thing mentioned have the required FCC tests and labeling on it?
Has it gone through EMC tests?
Has it got the tougher CE testing to sell in europe?
I don't know the answer but I would go with the 40 bucks and my I-pod thank you very much
Message: Posted by: Majiloon (Feb 27, 2005 11:35AM)
Excuse me gothick-
But this forum is for everyone- If I have a perspective on technical issues- and I have the time to spend - then I tend leave them- whether there are ‘your’ thread or not, just as you have seen fit to invade my threads.

As for mr-batson- I am an electronic – radio engineer- I said that I have used these remotes- I have literally built systems to match them- I have worked with AM remotes- raw AM transmitters daughter boards and the separate ELECTRONIC COMPONENTS -made from various companies from around the world. I make it my business to know what type of devices are available and research/develop compatible radio prototypes. Do you know how many types of low power AM transmitter or receiver daughter boards and pre made components are out there? You have no idea-

When I say AM remote- in this case and in any case that I have seen exposed in this industry- I know where they come from- and what they are made with- but there are several other AM components that are available- that are far superior to what has been used like in these set-ups. You have no idea-
If I use an AM system- then it is the best in its class at least 4 times over- i.e. dual superHet SAW controlled with a sensitively of at least –106db, and rated at least with 6 volts for the receiver- and not like the 3 volt system used in these $40 iPod remotes. And I would never put my receiver 2 inches away from the internal EMF created by the HDD within a device like an iPod.

You comments on My Upgrades- are absolute false- no- it’s a lie- like many other part-truths that I find represented in some of these threads. I have given customers credit for trade-ins within reason. I give my customers software upgrades regularly- even customizing chips to meet the needs of my customers, as I have for years.

I couldn’t care less if you want to buy these- and if you somehow think that I am threatened by these iPod RF remotes- you’re wrong- and you’re wrong to assume that I somehow I am amused by your utter disrespect.

As for whether I think MY device is the only solution- is childish comment- I actually have respect for Kerry- and after ripping open one of his systems- I have a better understanding of what he had to go through to make his system. I have stated so in my report. I have in fact referred several people to him.
Once again-You don’t know what you’re talking about.
He and I can stand united & confident that our systems were developed and uniquely crafted to meet the challenges of the busy professional or those who want to be one. If your not one of those 2 categories- then I couldn’t care less what you do- it is these 2 categories that I care a great deal.
Message: Posted by: bloodyjack (Feb 27, 2005 03:22PM)
Majiloon
Do your products carry the required FCC tests and labeling on them?
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 1, 2005 04:37PM)
I looked into the IR to RF remote converter. It will work with any IR remote that takes AAA or AA batteries. The way it works is that one of the two IR remote batteries is replaced with an RF transmitter and a rechargeable, short battery. This combo of transmitter and short battery takes the place of one of the normal batteries. The unit comes with two such short, recharable batteries. The only snag is that they don't sell the batteries seperately! At least not yet. The guy was very unconvincing as if they ever would sell the batteries seperately. I also couldn't get much info on whether or not the recharable batteries suffer from "memory effect" like a laptop battery does. I'd hate to have to buy a whole new unit in a few months just to replace the batteries.

I wonder if there are other IF to RF converters out there that don't have this problem?

Jim
Message: Posted by: G. Batson (Mar 2, 2005 01:21PM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-27 16:22, bloodyjack wrote:
Majiloon
Do your products carry the required FCC tests and labeling on them?
[/quote]

Interesting question, Bloodyjack. Is the "user" in violation of any law if using a device that does *not* pass required FCC tests?

G.
Message: Posted by: Avocat (Mar 2, 2005 07:17PM)
[quote]
On 2005-03-01 17:37, JamesinLA wrote:
I looked into the IR to RF remote converter. It will work with any IR remote that takes AAA or AA batteries. The way it works is that one of the two IR remote batteries is replaced with an RF transmitter and a rechargeable, short battery. This combo of transmitter and short battery takes the place of one of the normal batteries. The unit comes with two such short, recharable batteries. The only snag is that they don't sell the batteries seperately! At least not yet. The guy was very unconvincing as if they ever would sell the batteries seperately. I also couldn't get much info on whether or not the recharable batteries suffer from "memory effect" like a laptop battery does. I'd hate to have to buy a whole new unit in a few months just to replace the batteries.

I wonder if there are other IF to RF converters out there that don't have this problem?

Jim
[/quote]

If it's the same device I have, then rechargeable 2/3-AAA batteries are available online from various sources. I checked, but didn't note the links, figuring they'll have changed by the time I'll need one. But they're a separate product and available.

I've actually found this device works very well with a small JVC CD stereo (just leave the speakers at home). I trimmed off all the "offending" buttons from the remote, leaving only the play/pause, next, last and volume control buttons protruding. The result is a remote that slips perfectly into my pants change pocket where it stays properly aligned and where I can easily find and press the correct buttons through the fabric. No hands in pockets, nothing on my belt, the only thing lacking is autofade+skip. And an LED. But at less than one tenth the price, it's a workable poor man's sound cue.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 2, 2005 09:42PM)
Avocat,
Thanks for your answer. Now that I know the batteries are available and your positive experience using it, I'm going to order it. I don't need the auto fade because I mix all my tracks myself before burning to CD to have fades already if needed. Although, not as flexable it's good enough for now.
Thanks.

Jim
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Mar 3, 2005 05:31AM)
I thought it would be time to give you some more details on the AirClick remote for iPods, and to clear up some, shall I say, misconceptions.

[quote]When is availability Jason?[/quote]
We should be shipping in around 4 weeks. We have a lot of preorders, so no guarantees on delivery if you have not preordered.[quote]

Do your products carry the required FCC tests and labeling on them?[/quote]
Absolutely. You must register your products with the FCC, and CE if you sell globally, which we do. Without FCC approval, those boys can take you house, car, first born, and your original copy of The discoverie of Witchcraft without blinking an eye. The FCC means business.

[quote]These little $40 iPod remotes are junk.[/quote]

We only have a precious few factory units at this time, and I don't think I've sent you one for evaluation yet, One unit went to NBC's Today show for a segment on cool iPod peripherals a couple of days ago, but I will happily send you a unit once it becomes available. This is not the proper thread for me to talk about the inferior competition, but I do agree, some are engineered better than others.

[quote]All three of these units use a OEM keybob transmitter that I have already worked with and could design a reciever to match it with the power rating they use for the receiver- for $40- but - but its still junk[/quote]

We designed the transmitter from the ground up, including the enclosure. We have design artists too, as we feel that the overall look, feel and ease of use of of the product is equally important. This is by no means an OEM keybob. We have never "worked with" cheap Tawainese knock off products.

[quote]This is just a AM cheap-out remote that is in no way appropriate for the professional-
It does not have the features required - nor do they have the power to handle the job.
If you want more specifics- then you can give me a call- but I will not educate these poeple by publishing a lesson plan on line[/quote]

The AirClick is not an AM remote, it's FM, (technically it's ASK, if it's really any of your business) and I'm at a loss to understand what "appropriate for the job" means. I've explained the feature set, and the power/range that the AirClick achieves. I will be happy to give a lesson plan online for anyone that is interested in electronics.

[quote]I would trust a product that is being sold to the masses more than I would something from a small independant maufacturer for the magic community. [/quote]

Good point, whereas I won't comment regarding what kind of quantites we sell, we have found it much easier and enjoyable to sell cool products that are not "cheap junk". It's a win/win situation.

[quote]I am an electronic – radio engineer[/quote]

We have several in house, we can decompile an audio's remote protocol in a couple of hours, if need be. As I said, we work very closely with Apple, so we know the drill on iPods circuitry. They are one of our best customers, and we sell our products in every brick and mortar store, as well as their web site, in addition to our Worldwide distributors, and in the US in places like Circuit City, Target, Best Buy RadioShack, etc. We can get around designing circuit boards. Did I mention the AirClick is $40?

I have not tested your unit, and I would imagine that it works for the most part as advertised, passes FCC regulations and you have a customer base who is pleased. I would _never_ make accusations regarding your product without testing it first. Professionals do indeed need a solid audio unit, and I would assume since it's constructed from kit boxes that can be readily bought anywhere, that the expense that goes into them are for your engineering expertise, and not on the "details" of fit, finish, look, or feel of the product.

I just hope your engineering skills are better than your web site design skills. :)

I am always open to hearing from performers with feedback on features that they feel would enhance the AirClick remote to better suit their performing needs, and as far as "me not knowing anything about stage environemnts or the challeges for the live performer, I've toured colleges, night clubs, conventions, birthday parties, corporate events, and street magic, so I think I have a bit of insight as to what a working professional requires out of a remote audio solution. So if the demand is there, I would gladly consider an AirClick Pro version with an extended feature set.

Majiloon, I am going to give you a piece of advice and I recommend you think about it because I'm actually trying to help. Even in vertical markets, if you gouge your customers, (and, in my opinion, you are), you are begging for competition. If you attack manufacturers with more skills, resources and distribution channels than yourself with statements that border on libel, sometimes a manufacturer will sit up and take notice. I wish you well in your business.



Take care

jason
Message: Posted by: Regan (Mar 3, 2005 06:23AM)
[quote]
On 2005-03-02 22:42, JamesinLA wrote:
Avocat,
Thanks for your answer. Now that I know the batteries are available and your positive experience using it, I'm going to order it. I don't need the auto fade because I mix all my tracks myself before burning to CD to have fades already if needed. Although, not as flexable it's good enough for now.
Thanks.

Jim
[/quote]


Jim,

What type of CD player are you using?

Thanks.

Regan
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Mar 3, 2005 03:00PM)
Excellent Post, Jason, addresses all of our concerns.
I JUST PLACED MY ORDER ! (at http://griffintechnology.com/products/airclick/index.php )

At $40. this is a great backup to have (if not a primary show controller).
Nobody has mentioned how tiny the unit is and how it simply becomes part of the iPod.

Ship mine out ASAP and I will post a review!
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 3, 2005 04:06PM)
[quote]
On 2005-03-03 07:23, Regan wrote:
[quote]

Jim,

What type of CD player are you using?

Thanks.

Regan


Regan,
It's a Sony boom box. I use it on the street, at outside markets, and at birthday parties. Of course, I can't use the IR remote outside; the sun overwhelms it. But for inside, I can use the IR, but don't use it too much. Just to get started. Then I end up just hitting the buttons. But changing the IR remote into a true RF remote will make all the difference.

Jim
[/quote]
Message: Posted by: Natural Mystic (Mar 3, 2005 05:30PM)
Jason,

Would the USB configuration of the AirClick work with WinAmp?
Message: Posted by: Regan (Mar 3, 2005 06:10PM)
[quote]
On 2005-03-03 17:06, JamesinLA wrote:

Regan,
It's a Sony boom box. I use it on the street, at outside markets, and at birthday parties. Of course, I can't use the IR remote outside; the sun overwhelms it. But for inside, I can use the IR, but don't use it too much. Just to get started. Then I end up just hitting the buttons. But changing the IR remote into a true RF remote will make all the difference.

Jim
[/quote]



Thanks Jim!

Regan
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 3, 2005 06:37PM)
Guys,
I know nothing about the ipod, but how much would it be to put together an ipod system? I assume it would have to plug it into an amp of some sort correct? My Mipro amp I use mostly for my voice. I have run a walkman CD player through my Mipro a couple times but there's no way to really control base or treble.
What do you think would be the cost of a usable and portable amp/speaker and an ipod combo? Thanks.

Jim
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Mar 3, 2005 07:43PM)
4Gig iPod $199.
http://www.apple.com/ipodmini/

If your boombox has a cassette you can use a cassette interface ($7.)
OR
Amplifier recommendions are all over the place. Do you need it battery powered? do you need a wireless receiver built in? Look on ebay for an Anchor AN130

The iPod has a built in Equalizer for base treble so try your Mipro first.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 3, 2005 07:49PM)
Glod,
Thanks for all the possibilities!

You said, "If your boombox has a cassette you can use a cassette interface ($7.)" SO this is something that allows me to plug a music device into my boom box for amglication? I think that would be a good way to go if that's how it could work. Is that right? I didn't know this exsisted. Thanks!

Jim
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Mar 3, 2005 09:25PM)
[quote]Would the USB configuration of the AirClick work with WinAmp?[/quote]

Mystic

Yes, the included software for the Airclick USB supports WinAmp.

Thanks for the interest.

Jason
Message: Posted by: Natural Mystic (Mar 3, 2005 10:37PM)
Jason,

Thank you and your company for making this product available to the magic community.

Walter
Message: Posted by: Majiloon (Mar 3, 2005 11:00PM)
Jason-

Although, I have difficulty restraining my strong opinions occasionally, it is apparent that I could not help myself with the comments about products like the AirClick- and I apologize for coming off too strongly and offending anyone. I should have been more diplomatic, especially if I knew an employee of the company was spending time in this forum. I was careless- without thinking.- oops.

Since we are not supposed to use the threads on this web site to promote our own product, especially if we are not paying for advertising. There are some things I would like to clear up, not just for my sake, but to clean up some details you seem to have clouded.

First- I am- and have been in the process of getting my product FCC approved since July of last year and I am in the midst of finalizing the process. I am also applying for a patent. It has been an education to say the least, but this is not my first product either.
So- I am not naïve, and nor do I agree with the statement;

>“Without FCC approval, those boys can take you house, car, first born, and your original copy of The discoverie of Witchcraft without blinking an eye. The FCC means business.”<

This is a fundamental misunderstanding of what the FCC is about- they are not monsters, at lease the people I have been dealing with- nor will they take your house away. FCC’s job is to monitor the harmonics and power output of the transmitter and receiver and certify those devices that fall into the certification measurements and guidelines, especially those products like the company you work for produces, that intend to be mass produced. In my case I have a very small market place, but it still costs about $5,000 and as many tries as it takes to get it right. Once it is approved- it does not mean that it is somehow blessed by God- in fact it is restricted- and their restrictions are enforced during the design for the production process.
Just because someone prints on their business card that “they are a member of the Magic Castle”- does not mean that they are more qualified to perform a better show than someone who is not a member.

I am quite happy with the limited market place that I have been serving thus far and have no desire to “Vertical” climb into any other markets- especially the “electronics for home or office use”- thank you very much, I do not need your advice.
I have been a professional stage performer for 25 years, and an inventor of several electro mechanical devices- I know the stage environment inside and out. I have long since grown into this niche. I cater to those people who need a special niche RF device that will work in the worst of these particular environments. This is my specialty- and it is my professional opinion that products like the one your company produces are not made specifically to accomplish the challenges necessary for this very small- and specialized market place.

Novel- and very affordable- I give it credit for a creative solution. The company you work for has positioned itself to try to take advantage of the huge popularity of the iPod, and you are all deliriously excited- I am sure. So too are some of these people reading this thread that call themselves proud iPod owners and will buy anything sight unseen if it is an accessory for the iPod. I am guilty of this myself, but to a point.

The company you work for may have built this product from the ground up- but the philosophy for a product like the AirClick is based on the wrong foundation to accomplish what I have, for what (us) professional entertainers need in this tiny niche market. This is my opinion, take it or leave it, but with all due respect.

Just so that you understand- we don’t work with “kits” we work with low power pre-made FCC compliant RF modules. We use the upper echelon FSK for the superior immunity and power advantages. They are double the cost of ASK, but performance within this niche make it necessary to use FSK- at 916 MHz, and that is where we have moved. We need much more than 25-60 feet- and the all important immunity from FSK- that ASK does not supply.

You said-
“(technically it's ASK, if it's really any of your business) and I'm at a loss to understand what "appropriate for the job" means. I've explained the feature set, and the power/range that the AirClick achieves. I will be happy to give a lesson plan online for anyone that is interested in electronics. “

I’m sorry- this begins to sound like the arrogance I was blamed for- I’m really trying to be nice- so how can I put this nicely- I can’t get a fix as to what you do there – your probably into product development or branding, but you are not an engineer- otherwise you could not make this mistake—
ASK is NOT FM- and it is my business to know-

Maybe your confused- ASK is a low cost simple form of AM often used for digital communications and is on-off keying (OOK), a type of amplitude-shift keying by which binary data is represented as the presence or absence of a carrier wave. This is commonly used at radio frequencies to transmit Morse code, referred to as continuous wave (CW) operation for example. But it is an Amplitude Modulation RF to be sure.
Also- See notes on “FORMS OF AM” at the bottom of this page; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amplitude_modulation

Here is a something you might enjoy-
AM:
http://www.williamson-labs.com/480_am.htm
FM:
http://www.williamson-labs.com/480_am.htm

Again- you said-
“if it's really any of your business) and I'm at a loss to understand what "appropriate for the job" means.” --- Your at a loss for “appropriate for the job”?…
This is precisely my point- this product does not demonstrate that it does know what is appropriate for the “job” it needs to accomplish for ‘our’ needs.
Otherwise it would have used and external antenna on the receiver- higher power, and the transmitter would not just use a loop/trace antenna, or use ASK and expect it to meet the needs of the specific environments that are prevalent in this niche market.

But it does meet the requirements of the average iPod user- home use (25-60 feet- less if it is in your pocket). It was obviously built with minimum cost effective-low cost production in order to sell the heck out of it. The price point and margin is very slim- but it is obviously designed for much different, broader and more forgiving market place. And to that end- I congratulate your company- and wish you luck as you begin the launch of this first product- you have some stiff competition, hope to see you 3 years from now.

I will no longer respond to PM’s or emails about this thread- thank you,
Cheers.
Message: Posted by: bloodyjack (Mar 4, 2005 11:51AM)
I am going to try my I-pod and my air-click when it comes on stage and will review.
Message: Posted by: Avocat (Mar 4, 2005 02:44PM)
Forgot to mention, I own an iPod and RemoteRemote2, but the range is inferior to the RF extender Jim was discussing. Also, there are the problems inherent in iPods (I've had an automatic reset occur during a practice run). Kelly's product, even if it's controlling an iPod, won't prevent the occasional SNAFU inherent in a more complicated device like an iPod.

So, in a professional setting, I'd stick with the RF-extender-CD-boombox combo ... more reliable and better range. For rehearsal or informal social occasions (I actually use music, sometimes, even when performing supposedly "impromptu" - it's pretty fun!), I'd still use the RemoteRemote2, though I'll probably replace it with Griffin's AirClick based Jason's post on my past experience with Griffin products.

Also, depending on your venue, the RF-extender can be easier to install and use than even Kelly's self-contained product. Many showrooms and ballrooms have their own CD sound systems with remotes. Dave&Buster's back here has a Denon CD player with built-in output control (i.e. volume control from the CD player, not only through the amp & mixer). One remote (which they didn't have and I had to special order from a replacement-remote website) will control play/pause/advance/volume. And it works with Jim's RF-extender.

BTW, I've tested this RF-extender under different circumstances, though not outdoors yet. Even near radio antennae, it seems to work just fine within 30' (I've gotten up to 60' away, indoors with no other broadcasting equipment nearby). Also, I've found that, once out of range, it just plain doesn't work, rather than working erratically, which can actually be a plus. Better to have your boundaries sharply defined than constantly shifting.
Message: Posted by: malini (Mar 5, 2005 08:27PM)
Just about to pre-order my own Airclick.

Jason, your utter professionalism and patience speak louder than anything, or anyone, else.

Thanks dude.

-malini.
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Mar 6, 2005 03:23PM)
[quote]Jason, your utter professionalism and patience speak louder than anything, or anyone, else.[/quote]

Thanks. I just want fellow magicians know about a low cost remote solution that may be the right piece of apparatus for their particular venue.

Take care

Jason
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Mar 16, 2005 04:48PM)
OK Jason
When is the ETA on shipping for Airclick?
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Mar 17, 2005 08:11PM)
Hey people,

I read the drama in the forum I just didn't want to get involved. Today I walked into a Radio Shack in Los Angeles and I saw the AirClick. If I only owned an IPOD I would buy the remote and review it, but I don't, maybe I'll get one for XMAS.

The Radio Shack is in Montebello, CA, a Los Angeles county city. I am not sure in what cities or states you can find the product. Call your local Radio Shack, or the Corporate Office.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Mar 18, 2005 08:37PM)
[quote]When is the ETA on shipping for Airclick?[/quote]

We will be shipping March 31st.

Gothike, you must have seen a competitor's product, we have yet to ship, but I will let everyone know when the are available.

Thanks for the interest and take care

Jason
Message: Posted by: Daniel Faith (Mar 19, 2005 07:21PM)
Awesome posts gentlemen!
Thanks for all the links for laptop solutions.

IMO an IR remote is not really the least expensive way to go unless you know you will only be working childrens parties indoors. However, the nature of our business can throw many diverse situations your way. An RF remote can meet the challenges of outdoors and bright stage lighting where the IR remote cannot.
For this reason I would go with an RF remote from the start instead of buying an IR and having to later also buy an RF one.

Also, speaking as an expert in Rf and other electronics, Kelly is correct in his information with ASK vs FSK and his other advice. His knowledge of our specialized niche should not be ignored! We must have absolute quality and reliability because the show must go on...
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Mar 20, 2005 02:48AM)
[quote]We must have absolute quality and reliability because the show must go on...[/quote]

Good point. As a performer, you must choose the correct routines, venue, and hardware that fits your needs.

The solutions provided by other manufactures that are targeted for performers appear to be extremely good, well thought out and dependable. If you are a working magician, these products could be the solution you need.

In my opinion, there are 3 performance scenarios

The professional performer:

If you are touring with a professional show, you also hire a lighting and sound guy that tours with you.

The working performer:

If you are making a living off of your performances, but can't afford to tour with a crew, I would suggest looking into a professional remote sound solution, like the ones offered on this forum. Though expensive, from what I can tell, they are reliable.

Everyone else:

Like the thread suggests, a performer that needs a lower cost solution that is reliable. I stand behind my products, and while I'm not trying to suggest that my $40 solution is equal to others costing thousands, I am sure that it is the perfect solution for a lot of performers.

Take care

Jason
Message: Posted by: John C (Mar 20, 2005 07:49AM)
I have fairly simple needs. I have about 10 songs or sound clips in my show. All I want to do is press the remote to play a song and when the song is complete I want the unit to stop automatically. I don't want to have to press the remote again to stop the player. Is that how your unit works with the iPOD Jason?

I have a Mini VSM and it doesn't work that way. It works well but I do have to press the remote twice to start and stop the player.

Thanks,

John
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Mar 21, 2005 01:11AM)
My system with a laptop is setup to do that. I've been using it since 2000 and it's been trouble-free. And I only have two commands set up: A. Play one track (and stop after playing it) and B. Stop and fade out.

I use the "Stop and fade out" command for when a person is coming up on stage; I use a cue that lasts about 30 seconds, and they usually make it up on stage in about 20 seconds, so I cut off the track when it seems appropriate.

For routines done to a specific music track, I just start the track and go through the routine, timing it to the track so they finish at the same time.

My website that explains how to set up your laptop, with an RF remote and
Winamp, has been online since 2000 when I figured everything out. It's located at:
http://members.tripod.com/remotelaptop/

I'm collecting info for a long-overdue update to the site (it's been over a year and there are a bunch of things to update) and one of the many things I'll be doing is evaluating the new AirClick RF remote when it ships.

But take a look at the site now, if you haven't been there. It's got a lot of info.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 21, 2005 08:11AM)
Okay, here's my experience with the IR to RF remote converter.

It works well for me!

I've had it for a couple weeks, but used it at a show this past Saturday and it worked great. I set up my boom box behind my curtain for the first time. All I had was the little remote, which I kept on my suitcase table top. I was able to easily control the whole show from the remote. No one ever saw where the music was coming from. It's magic.

Details: when I first tried to use the thing, the remote didn't seem to be advancing my tracks or backing up (in case I needed to). To solve the problem, I switched the position of the battery and the battery-like transmitter in the remote. The instructions tell you to do this if this happens. That fixed the problem.

The unit comes with two pieces: a little flying saucer shapped reciever and a small IR broadcaster about a 1/4 inch at the end of a wire. To easily and reliably attach the IR broadcaster to my boom box, I taped some sticky backed velcro on the boom box, which now holds the IR broadcaster right on top of the IR receiver on the boom box.

One problem: during the show, I hit the wrong button on my remote. I hit the button that changes the boom box from a cd player to a radio! I had to then put the boom box back into cd mode and then cycle through all my cues to get back to where I had left off. Big mistake! I'm going to somehow cover that button on the remote so that doesn't happen again!

Thoughts: if I could put the boom box in some sort of covered box that would keep it out of the sun with the RF receiver, this outfit could work outdoors. I don't really need that so I have no plans to do that.

The way I work is, I burn custom CDs. I mix each track on my computer. Usually, the tracks are mixed so that there are 1 to 3 minutes of silence after the sound cue. Many of the cues have built in fades. After the sound cue is into the silence, I then hit pause and then hit advance. This advances to the next track while keeping you paused, so the next track is cued up and ready to play as soon as you hit play. On my remote, play and pause are the same button; it toggles back and forth.

Summing up: I am very very happy with this solution. For 50 bucks, I have an radio frequency music system.

Jim
Message: Posted by: Avocat (Mar 21, 2005 01:08PM)
Jim,

I might've mentioned that I have the same device and set-up (took me a while to notice the base station is also the recharger for the 2/3-AAA battery). My remote goes into my change-pocket, which keeps it upright in my pocket.

To prevent hitting the wrong button, I simply trimmed them all off. The holes are still there in case I want to shuffle tunes or switch to radio manually, but it's pretty much impossible to hit them by accident.

This also makes it VERY easy to find the right buttons in my pocket, given that the only three that protrude are play/pause, volume up and volume down. I even cut off the power and stop buttons.

As for sun problems, doesn't this thing come with an "IR-extender." You know, a little IR emitter on a wire. If you stick it onto the IR receiver with duck tape, the set-up will work in any lighting with no ambient light interference. Easier than a covered box, anyway.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 21, 2005 05:13PM)
Thanks, Avocat, for the tips. I may cut off the buttons. However, I constantly use my forward and back buttons. They have to stay. How is this set up working for you?
Thanks for everyone's help in suggesting this and getting me to try it. I figured, even if it didn't work, I could always use it for my 2nd tv at home.

Jim
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Mar 21, 2005 05:15PM)
G0thike:

Thanks for a wonderful thread. The laptop setup is great. I spent the weekend setting up my laptop with windows 95 and getting the portable CD Drive working on the laptop. Then I loaded all the ThinkPad drivers and Winamp and Drivers and music. Thanks for the Zip file full of wonderful add-ons.

I purchased IBM ThinkPad 365X's from ebay in late 2003. Windows 95 in 3.5 disk format. A portable CD Drive from I/O Magic at 24X and Creative Labs IF Remote. Cost for one system is under $100 and will perform all the functions of those $800 and $2400 systems and really easy to work with. All of it from ebay of course. As to why it took so long to set up. I couldn't figure out how to get the CD Driver to work with the Laptop. This weekend I pulled out my Laptop and sat down and decided I wasn't quitting till I got it to work. I had got fed up in the past with trying to chop up big files into many 3.5 floppy disks and then unchopping them. Apparently I got all the correct drivers installed this time as the computer recognized that the CD was there all on its own. Apparently I got Windows 95 Version 2 and it was able to find it on its own. The rest was easy.

Now that I have it up and running and know it will work I am looking at Keith Rubow's RF remote as I will be working from the stage and in outdoor situations. I can't believe how good the sound is when I run it through my Peavey XR600 powered Mixer and 358S 3-Way speakers. I wouldn't have believed it was a pc audio card that the sound was coming from. When I played ragtime Midi files it was as if there was someone in the room playing a real piano. If it hadn't been for this thread and the previous thread I would never have thought about doing this. Would have considered it way too expensive.

I do have one question for WinAmp though. How do you make the playlist editor window bigger. I can increase the size of the main window, but not the playlist window. Is that a function of the WPT program. If it is I'll just wait till my Windows 98SE Upgrade CD comes and try it then.

Thanks

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: Avocat (Mar 21, 2005 06:22PM)
My mistake. Forward & backwards buttons still protrude. But all the digit keys are gone. There was just no reliable way to find them through the fabric of my pants.

It's worked great for one performance and a number of test runs. In one Dave&Buster's venue we've got here, I went ahead and bought a replacement remote for their Denon 5-changer, because that model allows you to control volume with the CD remote. Haven't tried that one yet, but there are range problems that might be fixed with the battery-switch you posted. So thanks for that!
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Mar 21, 2005 07:26PM)
Pirate,

To change the size of the Playlist menu just click on the bottom right corner and drag, it is like changing the size of most windows.

To change the size of the playlist go to File, then Options, then select Preferences from the drop down menu. That will pop up the “Winamp Preferences” menu system.

Under the General Preferences part select PLAYLIST. That will bring up the part you need called Playlist Font Size. The default is set to 11 pixels.

Good luck on the remote control, e-mail Keith if you got more questions. Also make sure you order the correct one, he sells a parallel port version and a USB one. Last time I sent him an email he told me he was designing a New remote that is more sensitive and that it will be available soon.

Jason's company Griffin Technology is going to be selling a Laptop USB remote soon, I don't think it is programmable. But I mainly use the PLAY, STOP, FWD, REW in mine. He has more info on his remote than I do.

The WPT plugin does not like Windows 95, if I remember it only works with 2000 and above. That plug changes the color of the background and the color of the text in the Playlist.

I’m glad that you figured out how to make the CD work, I am assuming you went to the Device Manager and fixed the drivers.

Read this whole thread again, you might have missed some other advice that can help.

G0THIKE

Johncesta

You might want to consider a Laptop system, read this whole thread, I have discussed CUE behavior in one of these pages.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Mar 21, 2005 07:45PM)
Avocat,
Guess I'm lucky because my remote has the volume controls as two control buttons: softer, louder.
BTW, I plan on using this set up in July during my first gig at the Magic Castle in the Parlor.

Jim
Message: Posted by: John C (Mar 21, 2005 07:54PM)
[quote]
On 2005-03-21 20:38, g0thike wrote:
Johncesta

You might want to consider a Laptop system, read this whole thread, I have discussed CUE behavior in one of these pages.

G0THIKE
[/quote]

I work with computers all day. I appreciate the work you've done with the laptop but the last thing I would want to bring to a show is a laptop setup.

I have very minimal needs. I use the minivsm. It works great. I would like to be able to hit one button and have it start the song and when the track is finished to pause ready for the next track. A laptop setup would really be a bit of overkill for me. :)

Thanks,

JC
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Mar 21, 2005 10:27PM)
JC
The StageCue stops at the end of a song (either iPod or Minidisc) and waits for your next press from the remote, and ankle switch or a foot pad.

Back to the other subject

[quote]
On 2005-03-18 22:03, MR2Guy wrote:
Initially, the software will be hardwired for a few applications, Winamp included, but we will upgrade the software to make it user definable soon. Speaking with our programmers, they told me it would be pretty easy for them to modify the software for specific individual needs. In other words, if you wanted to remap a button on the transmitter to, say, lower the volume for x secs. and bring it back up for instance, or dedicate a button for fade, or pause after one song, etc. we could accomodate.

The software also provides on screen feedback as to which buttons are pressed, so you could use it as a prompter as well, with a little customization.

And, of course, I will offer a money back guarantee if anyone wants to try it and see if this would be a solution that would work for them.

Take care
Jason
[/quote]
That implies it can be programmed for the laptop.

There are now a bunch of laptop remotes that are programmable with the driver. The RemotePoint 100 by Interlink http://www.interlinkelectronics.com/indexf.html is the one I use with the laptop. It isn't a tiny remote (like the upcoming Airclick) but is smaller than a tv remote so I velcro it on the top of my table. The black rectangular one is best (4 button function) with dip switch rf codes. NOT the silver one (it is not as good and has a weird way for me to program by aiming the laser at the receiver each time to set the RF code).
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Mar 21, 2005 11:11PM)
Thanks g0thike:

That stretched it just the way I wanted. I guess it depends on which version of Windows 95 you have. I have Windows 95 version 2, the one that supported Plug 'n' Play. WPT works just fine with my Windows 95. Text is 30 point and changed the colors for easier viewing.

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Mar 22, 2005 06:12PM)
Martin,

I didn't know WPT works with Windows 95 version 2, please post a review when you have the system up and running and you used it in a live show.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Mar 23, 2005 09:28PM)
[quote]
I have fairly simple needs. I have about 10 songs or sound clips in my show. All I want to do is press the remote to play a song and when the song is complete I want the unit to stop automatically. I don't want to have to press the remote again to stop the player. Is that how your unit works with the iPOD Jason?

I have a Mini VSM and it doesn't work that way. It works well but I do have to press the remote twice to start and stop the player.[/quote]

The iPod has no preference to play only one song, and stop. But I can offer a workaround, and it would probably work with your Mini VSM too.

Record a long track of silence, say, 20 minutes, and insert it between each song. After track 1 plays, the iPod will advance to track 2 (silence). All you would need to do to play your next track with music would be hit the "next track" button.

Longer tracks take a bit longer to load, but it wouldn't matter, as the long tracks are silence, but if I'm not mistaken, advancing from a long track to a short track doesn't lag.

I think this would work for most performance situations, if you really, really need that particular feature, it's gonna cost you a few extra hundred bucks.

Hope this helps

Jason
Message: Posted by: Avocat (Mar 24, 2005 01:19PM)
Thanks for the tip, Jason. After reading it, I went ahead and created a 20-minute MP3 of silence and promptly loaded it between every track on my show-soundtrack playlist. Haven't tried it in a show yet (it's only been 12 hours), but played with it a LOT and I'm convinced it'll work great.

Something Jason didn't mention, because maybe it goes without saying, but this arrangement will prevent the iPod from going to sleep between tracks (because it never pauses).

The only downside is there's no auto-fade (which shouldn't be THAT important, since you can simply advance to silence during applause).

Oh, and range still blows. I'm still using the RemoteRemote 2. Based on my prior experience with Griffin, though, I've no doubt that AirClick will be a superior product.

None of this solves the problem with occasional iPod errors, though. I'd still go with a CD-player and RF extender as a backup.

If anyone wants my 20-minute MP3 of total silence, drop me an E-mail at jkawashima@aol.com. It's only 600K or so, so it'll upload and download quickly.

Thanks again, Jason!
Message: Posted by: glodmagic (Mar 24, 2005 03:01PM)
I too have been using a silence track for years on my minidisc and now on the iPod.

Sometimes I will use a Playlist with a very quiet mesmerizing music track as an alternative to silence in between tracks. I like Low-Volume carnival music, music box music, or spooky repeating sounds (for our spooky show).
It tends to enrich the show to have a constant VERY Low volume background. The music should be repetitious and not a "song" with a predictable end so it will not be a jolt when you advance to the next full volume song in your playlist.
Message: Posted by: Tim Hannig (Mar 24, 2005 06:38PM)
I have a showtech, but love my Ipod and the possibility of using different playlists.

I've been using the remote remote with the ipod, and have been doing the "silent track" thing for quite some time.

However, I still think I want to buy either the stagecue or the Icue. Not sure which one to get.

Glod seems pretty informed...I haven't read all the past posts...so I'm not sure which way I'll go.

Any advice for me?

My wants: auto fade/advance, autopause, etc.
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Mar 24, 2005 09:03PM)
Tim,

If you want a StageCue, ShowTech, VSM, do a search on the Café. Their are lots of threads on them.

G0THIKE

DYNAMIC LIBRARY WINAMP PLUGIN

Go to
http://www.winamp.com/plugins/details.php?id=144458&show=reviews&page=4

Note: needs Windows 2000 or XP to work

Dynamic Library is a plugin that install an option called “Dynamic Library” which is Windows Explorer in WINAMP, and much more. It give you an oversight of your MP3, WAV and other files the way you've stored them on your Hard Drive, and it will do it in your language. It basically helps you to see everything organizes in a Tree like structure such as Windows Explorer but in Winamp.

It comes with folder view and ID3 display/edit... playlist manager... drag & drop to Explorer and other programs... move, copy or delete songs, enqueue after current.

CONNECTORS/CABLES FOR YOUR SOUND SYSTEM/DEVICE TO CONNECT TO A PA SYSTEM

I am not an expert on connectors, hopefully more knowleable people like Dan Magic Roadie or Andy Leviss will enlightened us on this matter so here is what I know, it isn’t everything but this has worked for me.

If you are carrying a CD player, walkman, IPOD, laptop, you’ll need the following to connect your sound equipment/device to a PA system.

Male connectors have a “penial” look to them. Female connectors are inside. Sorry for the reference.

3.5mm male connector stereo (has 2 rings) is what is common in your headphones, computer speakers. Look it up on the net and you’ll see a picture. This is the end that plugs to your sound system/device.

Stereo on males have 2 rings and mono has 1 ring.

Here is what I carry with me in a little container.

3.5mm male stereo to 1/4 male mono cable
3.5mm male stereo to 1/4 male stereo cable
3.5mm male stereo to dual 1/4 male mono (has two 1/4 male mono cables)
3.5mm male stereo to dual RCA cables
3.5mm male stereo to XLR male cable
3.5mm male stereo to dual XLR male cable (has two XLR male cables)

These cables will allow you to plug your sound system/device to most PA systems. You might also want to add a 30-foot 3.5mm male to 3.5mm female extension, that’ll let you have your sound player next to you if the PA system is far away.

Some old schools, halls, auditoriums have XLR male connector outlets. You might also want to purchase 2 male XLR to female XLR converters.

You can also save some cash with the 3.5mm male stereo to 1/4 male stereo cable, you can get a RCA cable to 1/4 male converter, or 1/4 inch to XLR converter, just do your homework and find out what will work for you. There are converters to go from male to female, RCA to 1/4, XLR to the others and back and forth, stereo and mono and the whole nine yards. Then the fat lady sings.

I hope this information makes sense, I am not sure if the 3.5mm male stereo to dual XLR male cable is really necessary. Hopefully someone else in this Café can add something.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Mar 31, 2005 04:55PM)
Thanks for the adapter list.

I came up with an inexpensive way around this. I picked up a Studiomaster Logic Twelve on ebay for $61.00. It's a small mixer board with 8 channels and has places to connect everything up to. I know exactly what plugs I need and I can tweak my sound and know exactly what I will sound like no matter what I have to plug into. I can also use this when I use my own sound system by plugging into the power input on the powered amp and I'm good to go. It also means I just need to carry a 1/4 jack to 1/4 jack cord and a 1/4 jack to female XLR with a Male to Male XLR adapter to hook up to any system out there. I can also run a line from the Auxillary 2 output to my Powered Speaker that I use as a monitor. Doing Hypnosis shows is a little different than magic shows and requires a little more in the way of sound. I also bought the mixer as an extra for when I only use my powered speakers to do the whole show. They aren't great in the area of mixing it all together and this lets me be ready under any circumstances. By the way, the mixer sounds great and makes what comes out of my powered mixer better than the mixer does itself.

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Mar 31, 2005 11:03PM)
Martin,

I like your set-up, the CONNECTOR list was for the few times when the location you show up has a PA system, I just take my laptop, the remote and I plug it into the house mixer, etc.

You might look into RCA cables they saved my life a few times, I have done gigs before and all the channels were taken and only a RCA one was open. Or it was an old sound system that worked fine and I had the correct plugs.

So how is your laptop doing?

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Apr 3, 2005 10:34AM)
HI all

Just wanted to let you know... the AirClick Remote for iPods is now shipping.

To all of you that I asked to review, please PM me again for you addresses so I can get them out to you.

The units really are nice, I'm proud of them. I want to get them into your hands so you can review them..

Thanks all, once you get the units, please reveiew them here fairly so others will know what the product is all about.

Take care

Jason
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Apr 5, 2005 03:30PM)
Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears….


I am waiting around for Airclick reviews, if anyone has an extra IPOD they want to donate for a review, I can do a great Review.

Here is a neat WinAmp plug I found recently, it will add more functionality to your Playlist in Winamp, the playlist is were the song names all appear, go to the drop down menu and select Playlist Editor, that’ll bring it up. :



EXPLORER CONTEXT MENU
http://www.winamp.com/plugins/details.php?id=139313

In the Winamp playlist window when you right click on it, a menu appear, one of the options is “Remove Item – Delete” which remove the file from the Playlist but Not the computer. This plugin installs a Windows Explorer type functionality in Winamp playlist window. Just rightclick within the playlist window, and you will see the 'Explorer' selection in the list. It will allow you to delete the actual file, copy & paste, without having to look for it in your folders. See link for more info.


ML FIND
http://www.winamp.com/plugins/details.php?id=139376

This plugin installs a Menu in the Playlist window, (when you right click on it) called “Find In Media Library”
Simply right click in the Playlist Editor window and you can search for media (mp3 files) by artist, song, album, etc. See link for more info.


G0THIKE

Greetings,

Here is a useful tool for some:

BIG FREE CLOCK (Non Winamp File)
http://www.contactplus.com/products/freestuff/bigfreeclock.htm

I use this for my show, I don’t wear a watch since I do manipulations. A few times I have over performed an hour set, and gone over 15 – 20 minutes. I wish I had a better biological clock or could tell time with the sun, but I can’t. Here is what I did, I installed a program called Big Free Clock. Now I could look at my laptop and tell time.
This useful utility will simply display the current time anywhere on your desktop.
· Use transparent backgrounds (Windows XP and 2000 only)
· Totally free meaning you can use it anywhere without paying or viewing advertising
· Use 12 hour or 24 hour time displays
· The clock can be minimized in the system tray
· The digits can be any color
· The clock can be resized to virtually any size on your desktop including FULL SCREEN
G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: magicbyswh (Apr 5, 2005 06:56PM)
Jason, Will the Airclick work with a Dell DJ ?
Steve
Message: Posted by: MR2Guy (Apr 7, 2005 11:07PM)
[quote]Will the Airclick work with a Dell DJ ?[/quote]

Afraid not, it only with iPods with a dock connector, and the iPod mini.

Take care

Jason
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (Apr 25, 2005 03:49PM)
Well I successfully used my Laptop in a show. It was only opening music but the sound was great and remote worked flawlessly. My first Hypnosis show is in two weeks and I am acquiring a RF remote for that show. I just can't be worrying about if the remote is aimed properly with everything else I will be thinking about at that show. Thanks for starting this thread it has been full of great information.

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: bloodyjack (Apr 27, 2005 11:27PM)
I put up a quick review
http://mysite.verizon.net/bloodyjack/airclick.html
Message: Posted by: g0thike (May 19, 2005 10:10PM)
Hello People,

I received the Griffin Technology remote control for the PC the “I Trip”, the software does not support WINAMP yet. But I am waiting for that update, I tested it with Windows Media Player, Power Point and it works. I am not really a WMP fan. But it does trigger and the range is pretty good and it is also $30.00 bucks.

When the UPDATE and support for WINAMP happens I’ll post a more through review for the laptop remote. I just want to field test it at a few shows.

The “Airclick” review for Griffin Technologies IPOD remote is also up in it’s own thread. Just search for “AIRCLICK”. For $30.00 bucks you can’t beat it.



Anyhow I found these 2 plugs:


Bluetooth Remote Control
http://www.winamp.com/plugins/details.php?id=144890

With this plugin you can use the accessory menus of a bluetooth mobile phone to control Winamp. It uses menus displayed on your mobile phone: you do not need to look at your computer to control it.


Dolby Surround Audio Enhancer
http://www.winamp.com/plugins/details.php?id=145086

A Surround sound plug, a trial version, Free to try, cheap to buy.

See Ya,

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Dan McLean Jr aka, Magic Roadie (May 20, 2005 10:40PM)
G0THIKE,
Your input into this thread is AWESOME! Thanks very much for sharing all you findings.
Dan.
Message: Posted by: g0thike (May 21, 2005 01:29AM)
Dan,
I am glad that you find the info great. I think your information is MORE AWESOME, your advice on microphones and sound has really helped me and others, I have read most of your posts and Andy Leviss.

Dan have you controlled music cues with a laptop? If you did how did it go?

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Dan McLean Jr aka, Magic Roadie (May 21, 2005 09:53PM)
[quote]
On 2005-05-21 02:29, g0thike wrote:
Dan,
I am glad that you find the info great. I think your information is MORE AWESOME, your advice on microphones and sound has really helped me and others, I have read most of your posts and Andy Leviss.[/quote]
Thanks, g0thike! I'm glad you find my help ... er ... helpful!

[quote]Dan have you controlled music cues with a laptop? If you did how did it go?[/quote]
Never have, and probaly never will. My rare performances as a magician are close-up, and in my career as a supervisor in a live-audio engineering company, most of what I see is MD, CD, or laptop with a hard-wired interface to a digital mixing system. Always eager to learn, though, I'm intrigued by this thread. Necessity [b]IS[/b] the "Mother of Invention", and that's exactly what this thread's all about!

I just realized that I nothing to add to the topic, so I'll just watch in admiration from the sidelines!
Message: Posted by: g0thike (May 21, 2005 11:16PM)
Dan,

Thanks for looking and the kind words, I watch some of the Threads in different Forums all the time, a lot of time people know more about a subject that I do, I wish I was a all knowing Yoda Jedi Master.

You can experiment with a system like the one I use very easily, just buy the Creative Labs IR credit size remote it will run about $10.00 bucks, you might need a serial port to USB tranformer (Go to Radio Shack) and install the software to your desktop computer and download WINAMP and mess around with it. You don't need a laptop to "Test Drive" the system.

I talked about WINAMP and plugs and cue behavior earlier in this thread.

If you love the system, get a Pre-Owned laptop from your local classifieds and ONLY use it for sound cues. Make it the dedicated music player, delete software you don't need and do not surf the web with it.

If you got questions just send me a Private Message.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Paul G (May 26, 2005 10:40AM)
Can a laptop be also used as an amplifier for my voice regardless if the system is playing music or not?
Message: Posted by: g0thike (May 26, 2005 08:06PM)
Paul,

Yes it can, you have to plug in the microphone into the microphone slot on the laptop. Then adjust the SOUND CONTROL PANEL on your Operating System.

You need speakers though.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (May 26, 2005 09:33PM)
Just letting everyone in on one thing I discovered with this system. It works great for music but be prepared for voice overs. I mixed the Twilight Zone Theme with a voice over and when I played it back (first time during a show) all I got was the voice over. It would appear that using a mini plug to 1/4" plug doesn't bring in both tracks. I'm guessing I will have to get one of those mini plug to y adapter 1/4" and attach it to one of my left and right channels on my mixer. It kind of messed of my intro but I survived and my first Hypnosis Show was still a smashing success. Actually it was my fault as I should never have put something new in a show that wasn't rehearsed before. However, nothing was rehearsed in this and it still knocked 'em dead:>)

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: Dan McLean Jr aka, Magic Roadie (May 26, 2005 09:49PM)
[quote]
On 2005-05-26 22:33, MagicalPirate wrote:
Just letting everyone in on one thing I discovered with this system. It works great for music but be prepared for voice overs. I mixed the Twilight Zone Theme with a voice over and when I played it back (first time during a show) all I got was the voice over. It would appear that using a mini plug to 1/4" plug doesn't bring in both tracks. I'm guessing I will have to get one of those mini plug to y adapter 1/4" and attach it to one of my left and right channels on my mixer.[/quote]
Hi, Martin!
The way you've described it, I think you'd have the same problem with any player, because it's an issue with the wiring of the adapter. I may be wrong but that's what it sounds like. I imagine your music was on one side (let's say left) and the voiceover was on teh other side ( let's say right).
Cheers!
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (May 27, 2005 10:23AM)
Hi Dan:

That's the problem, it was a 2 track recordering left and right channel. It played back just fine on my desktop computer where I recorded. Of course I have stereo speakers connected to the sound card. It just didn't work on the laptop when it was run through the sound system. It worked on the laptop just fine when I played it back through its speakers before connecting to the sound system just didn't come through the sound system. I think if I get a stero mini plug to split y 1/4" adapter it should take care of the problem. I have a couple of channels that allow me to insert 1/4" left and right plugs on my mixer so I think I'll have a go at it that way before the next show. Don't want that to happen again.

Martin
Message: Posted by: Michael_Marino (May 27, 2005 10:44PM)
If you want to expand the range of your IR remote, just get a pair of IR/RC adapters! Thery tkae the IR signal, transfer it into RC, send it via RC to the other adapter, which converts it back to IR and sends it to the laptop/what ever you want! Brilliant!

-Michael
Message: Posted by: Paul G (May 28, 2005 04:05AM)
I'm working on getting my system set up. I'm going to get all the music and sound effects done on my desktop, then burn it to a cd for use in a laptop (hope to have one soon). Question: How do I record my voice over music into my hard drive so that I can ultimately burn it to a cd? I have the music cd and microphone, but can't figure out how to record this into the hard drive. Is it possible to do this?

I think I figured it out. I downloaded the following audio mixer

http://www.audiotoolsdirect.com/Music_Creation/

I'm just starting to fool around with it. It seems to do just what I wanted. Pretty cool stuff!
Message: Posted by: MagicalPirate (May 28, 2005 10:12AM)
Hi Paul:

I use Goldwave Sound Editing software. Its available at [url]http://www.goldwave.com[/url] if that doesn't work out for you. It is easy with goldwave as you just select which track to record to and record. I always record on the left (top track) and paste the music into the right (bottom track).

Martin :pirate:
Message: Posted by: g0thike (May 29, 2005 12:52AM)
Paul G,

It is possible to record your voice into a harddrive. Windows has a "Sound Recorder" program in the Accessories Folder- Entertainment Subfolder. It will let you record voice as a wave file, you then need to convert wave to MP3. Go to Jeff Haas site he has a link to a convertor software.

You also have to mess with the "Volume Control" too, found in the Accessories folder. Sometimes Microphone is on MUTE. Make sure you have a decent microphone hooked up to your computer. The microphones that come with computers pretty much suck and sound horrible.

G0THIKE

Paul,

GO HERE:

http://home.earthlink.net/~krubowc4/Downloads.htm

Keith Rubow who sells the remote I use has a link to DbpowerAmp and a MP3Cut software to edit MP3's.

Check it out they are FREE.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: John C (Jun 1, 2005 11:16AM)
[quote]
On 2005-05-26 22:33, MagicalPirate wrote:
Just letting everyone in on one thing I discovered with this system. It works great for music but be prepared for voice overs. I mixed the Twilight Zone Theme with a voice over and when I played it back (first time during a show) all I got was the voice over. It would appear that using a mini plug to 1/4" plug doesn't bring in both tracks. I'm guessing I will have to get one of those mini plug to y adapter 1/4" and attach it to one of my left and right channels on my mixer. It kind of messed of my intro but I survived and my first Hypnosis Show was still a smashing success. Actually it was my fault as I should never have put something new in a show that wasn't rehearsed before. However, nothing was rehearsed in this and it still knocked 'em dead:>)

Martin :pirate:
[/quote]

I use a program called ripeditburn at blazeaudio.com

It allows you to rip cdcs and edit them then save the file. They also have another app that lets you add tracks. So you can do a voice over fairly easy and save the file.

John
Message: Posted by: Avocat (Jun 8, 2005 01:29PM)
Don't know if this applies here, but I've been dragging two iPods to each performance. One is mine, the other is my wife's iPod mini, onto which I've loaded an identical playlist. Way I see it, if an iPod will fail 1/100 times, then two iPods will both fail 1/10,000 times. Not bad odds. This is, of course, only a "poor man's" solution if you already have two iPods handy.

I've found that the RemoteRemote2 works wonderfully. I get around the range problem by timing my routines so I'm close to the iPod when I change tracks (which I have to be anyway, since it's also my "applause area"). It fits perfectly in my the tiny additional front pocket of my slax (I think it's for keys) so I can trigger it by raising my hand to my waist or by keeping my hand on my hips. Fade-to-pause hasn't been necessary, since each track change occurs during applause. Thanks to the 20-minute silent track between each song, the iPod never sleeps and changes quickly.

I've actually found AirClick somewhat harder to use. It's not as responsive as the RemoteRemote2, and the range is about the same.
Message: Posted by: Tony S (Jun 28, 2005 01:50PM)
Soundforge is another great sound editing program. I find it to be very user friendly and easy to use.
Message: Posted by: funemagic (Jul 16, 2005 06:52PM)
I'd like to buy an RF remote to work my laptop. I'm currently using winamp as suggested in this form with an IR remote. Does the Airclick RF remote work with Winamp?

Thank You

Eric
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jul 16, 2005 11:34PM)
Nope, the Airclick doesn't work with WinAmp yet. They need to update the software first.
Message: Posted by: funemagic (Jul 20, 2005 09:34AM)
I have a question about recording sounds into the sound recorder. I want to put the “vanishing bandana” routine into my Winamp playlist but the sound recorder will only record a 60sec. clip. I recorded it in 3 sections and then pasted them together but the sound quality suffered. Lots of hiss and other static kind of sounds between the breaks. Is there a way to increase the length of the sound that the sound recorder will capture? Three minutes would do the trick.

Thank You
Message: Posted by: Drs_Res (Jul 20, 2005 09:44AM)
You can get Audacity for free to record and edit.
Go here:
http://audacity.sourceforge.net/
Message: Posted by: johncrosby (Nov 26, 2005 08:39PM)
Maybe someone can help me with this one. I cannot locate any remotes like you are talking about the are inexpensive. What exactly is the name of the remote.
Message: Posted by: g0thike (May 15, 2006 04:15PM)
Folks,

I have been slacking off, actually going to school, performing some shows, thank god.

Here is a little goodie:

http://www.ysgyfarnog.co.uk/utilities/winampremote/

It allows WINAMP to be controlled with the Griffin Technologies Air Click USB
remote. It works.


Another software for cell phone, pda thru bluetooth control is available at:
http://www.salling.com/

I tested it on my Palm Treo 650 and it works. It also supports PC and Mac.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Oct 10, 2006 02:20AM)
HOW TO GET YOUR IPOD TO CROSSFADE BETWEEN SONGS

Hey people,

It’s been a while since I reported any findings, I have noticed the threads on IPODs and people spending extra cash for a fade with a remote control and some MP3 player.

Anyhow, here is some interesting info for some daring IPOD users.

http://www.rockbox.org/twiki/bin/view/Main/WhyRockbox
or
http://www.rockbox.org


It’s an Operating System that you can install on your IPOD that will allow it to fade- cross fade between songs. It is a IPOD hack, so it will Void the warranty, but you can also just reformat the IPOD if it gets stuck and all is well.

I wish I owned an IPOD and could try it out.

Someone with some tech experience can maybe try it out for us and see how well it works, and if you can use the Ijet or Airclick RF remotes with that OS IPOD software.

More info can be found in the http://www.ipodwizard.net forum, or by searching on yahoo or Google.

It might be the HOLY GRAIL and answer for us.



IJET TWO WAY REMOTE WITH LCD SCREEN


This remote control almost made me buy an IPOD, just read about. It has an LCD screen built into the remote that displays playlist info.

Rumor has it the IJET has a better range than the Airclick.

http://www.abtech2.com/twowayRemote.htm
Message: Posted by: Skip Way (Oct 10, 2006 07:02AM)
The iJet Two-Way Remote works like a dream...however, the base attachment blocks access to the earphone jack. This means you can't plug the Nano directly into your sound system without a docking station. I use a Nano in my shows...so that is a major mobility and ease-of-use issue for me.

The newer iJet RF Remote for the Nano ( http://www.theistore.com/ijetnano.html ) is a self-contained clear case for the Nano with EASY access to the earplug jack. It also has a pass-thru feature so that it can be used on a docking station if preferred. The clear case protects the Nano. The postage stamp size remote fits magnetically onto the back of the case, so it's hard to lose.
The remote function works beautifully with the very rare dead spot issue. I used it the other day on stage. The sound booth was in front of the stage at a little over 100 feet back along the far wall. All I need is my Nano, a 1/4 in. to stereo RCA plug adapter, and I'm ready to rock. At $55 - $60, it's a dream.

Skip
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Oct 10, 2006 08:04PM)
I just found this plug-in for Winamp that allows you to use Winamp to load songs onto the iPod, as well as normalize the volume of all tracks using another utility:

http://www.mlipod.com/index.php

And, I'm finally getting around to updating my website that goes into detail about using a laptop for sound cues. There are some neat new pieces of software out there that allow you to do some fun stuff in a bigger show.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Oct 11, 2006 02:52AM)
I tried out the Winamp plugin for the Airclick. This fixes the problem the Airclick had with Winamp...there was no way to configure it to work with anything other than iTunes, Powerpoint, or Windows Media Player.

Once you start it, it will work similar to the iPod solutions people have mentioned, but you don't need the silent track if you don't want it.

Play/Pause button. This starts or stops a track.
Next/Forward button. Goes to the next track.
Previous/Rewind button. Goes back one track.
Volume Up and Down buttons work as you'd expect.

You can configure Winamp to stop playing a track and fade it out, instead of just cutting it off. Open the Preferences (Ctrl - P) and select "Output" under "Plugins." Then, highlight "Direct Sound Output" and click the Configure button. Click the Fading tab in the popup window. Highlight "on pause/stop" and check the "Enabled" box. Then check the "Use custom fade time" box, because the default fade time is way too short. Try setting it to 1000 milliseconds and see how you like it; 1500 may be a bit better.

The other option to set in Winamp is the "Manual playlist advance." Usually, you load up Winamp with a set of tracks you want to listen to, hit Play, and it goes through them. However, in our case, we usually want to play one track and then have Winamp stop and wait for us to start the next track. So, open the Preferences, highlight "Playlist" (near the top of the Preferences) and look for "Manual Playlist Advance" and check the box. Now, when a song gets to the end, Winamp will stop and not go to the next song. To trigger the next cue, hit the Next/Forward button and the Play button.

You can also interrupt a song that's playing and jump to the start of the next one, just hit the Next button.

So, this plug-in for the Airclick and Winamp works similar to the remote I use. The main differences are that you can't redefine the buttons and the Airclick is a bit cheap...it only works up to about 60 feet (the KeyRF goes much farther and has an antenna on the receiver that you can extend), and sometimes I find that the button presses just don't get recognized. The other thing is that the plugin doesn't move the highlight bar in Winamp, so you can't easily tell at a distance what track is playing.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Dec 6, 2006 02:44AM)
Greetings,

I actually bought a IPOD, it was used and on sale at a great price.

So far I have hacked the boot loader and I have installed IPOD Linux, Rockbox and I am working on modding the Apple firmware.

Rockbox has crossfade and more advanced audio settings but it does not support remote control yet via the bottom dock. Since Rockbox is open source, I hope someone will work on it.

If only the Apple OS could be fully hacked.

So it is possible for the IPOD to crossfade but you have to use a different operating system.

I will have more info as I find things.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Zack (Dec 18, 2006 07:07PM)
What does "crossfade" mean? Is that the same as fading out?
Message: Posted by: Stevethomas (Dec 18, 2006 09:30PM)
A poor man's remote sound cue is also known as a "girlfriend".

Steve
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Dec 18, 2006 11:08PM)
Crossfading definition on Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fade_%28audio_engineering%29
Message: Posted by: Regan (Oct 17, 2008 01:46PM)
Wow, this is an old thread. Anyone have any updates?

How about some of the new RF remotes for the iPods? Have you seen or tried the "Monster iEZ Click" remote for iPods? The description sounds good, and I believe they make them that will work with most iPods, including the Nanos.

Here's the manufacturer's description:

• Wirelessly controls your iPod without tangled wires or bulky add-ons.

• Controls for On/Off, Play/Pause, Volume, Track Skip, Hold and Previous/Next Playlist.

• Reliable RF Receiver plugs into iPod Dock Connector.

• RF (radio frequency) signal enables use through clothes, bags, and even walls!

• Oversized buttons for no-look control; easy to use even with gloves on.

• Removable Belt Clip and Elastic Wrist Strap let you wear the iEZClick just about anywhere: handlebars, pack straps, etc.

• Rugged weather-resistant design is ideal for outdoor use.




The easy-to-use, oversized buttons and the removeable belt clip and wrist strap sound pretty cool.

How about the iPod itself? Have some of the problem issues (such as freeze ups) been cleared up with the newer generation iPods?

Regan
Message: Posted by: Neznarf (Oct 19, 2008 11:43AM)
Don't know about the POOR MAN but here a new offering:

http://www.pro-magic.com/shop/product.php?productid=183&cat=0&page=1
Message: Posted by: Stevethomas (Oct 19, 2008 02:44PM)
With this unit, there's apparently an optional magic wand remote and a THUMB TIP 3-button remote. Sounds like the gadgets we used to use in my morning radio days for the sound effects (aka: fart noises) during the show. Technology wasn't that great back then, however.

Steve
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Nov 4, 2008 05:58PM)
I use this program and like it and am using the Beta. I have some problems with the exporting to WMA. The plug in/add on does not seem to work. Oh I get a WMA but it will not play. MP3 does work as well as wav.
I needed to convert some tapes to digital and Audacity takes out the hiss rather nicely. I also just cut three songs together from a CD that at one time I made by electronic splicing with two tape machines. Man have times changed....
Audacity works well once you play around with it to make smooth edits. For most the free program will do the job and toss them a few bucks if you get something out of it.


[quote]
On 2005-07-20 10:44, Drs_Res wrote:
You can get Audacity for free to record and edit.
Go here:
http://audacity.sourceforge.net/
[/quote]
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Nov 5, 2008 10:47AM)
Are you really more than 50-75 feet from your ipod to have to move closer or does this unit not really get the 50-75 feet range as they claim on their website?
What is the reliability at 12-20 feet? You must have a reason you felt you had to walk closer to your ipod if the remote does not care 50 feet. Let us know what the actual range has been. Thanks
[quote]
On 2005-06-08 14:29, Avocat wrote:


I've found that the RemoteRemote2 works wonderfully. I get around the range problem by timing my routines so I'm close to the iPod when I change tracks (which I have to be anyway, since it's also my "applause area

[/quote]
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Nov 19, 2008 10:49PM)
I just picked up a DLO Tunestik at Marshall's.(USA store that sells buy out on cloths, shoes some toys and sometimes boxed gifty things like this item. It is also the same company as TJ MAXX and you will find the same merchandise in both.)

This is an older model bit it does work with Ipod touch and Nano 4g and anything below. Only $20 On line they still go for more. While not your high end the little RF remote might interest some party performers.

It is powered by Ijet but different. Yes on some it will block your headphone jack but many say you want to use the line level signal by using a dock cable to RCA.

The Tunestik has a pass through port so you can still charge, dock or cable while this thing is plugged into the dock connector.

DLO Tunestk is really sold as an FM transmitter to play music from the ipod through your car stereo or home receiver (geared more towards a car with steering wheel cradle to hold the remote included.
This sell for $45-55. The only addition in the new one that I can see is that the remote as an lcd screen. The listed range is the same. So the extra LCD will help you very little.

Remote as control for track back track forward, play/pause, volume up and volume down as well as the ipod back light and the tuner button for the FM transmit.

The remote is small thin and what some might call KEY CHAIN size. It has one LED that lights when you hit the button.

As far as the FM transmitting, it is poor. Even in the country the unit had to be near the receier or antenna. My hand brushing on the Tunestik would even block some of the signal. I hear many of these types of devices do poorly due to FCC regulation of broadcast strength.

But that is not why I picked one up. I wanted to control the ipod nano via RF remote.

Specifications state the max range is 25 feet. This will disappoint some of the pros out there but the title of the topic is addressing the lower cost solutions.

My tests showed that one can get 25 feet with line of site to the device and out of pocket.
With the remote in the pocket. you can get some reliable results at 15-16 feet.
The remote to response from the ipod was near instant until you are at its max range. Above 15 feet I would not get a response at times with a quick push of the button. This was not the case at 15 feet or under. A more firmm, the longer push would work well thus there will be a learning curve if you are at 15 feet or more to how long you hve to push it.
Also in the pocket, there was some difference, at the further distances to the angle of the remote. Depending how it was pointing it worked better.
The test were now indoors and out. Yes it will go around corners and such but then you must stick in that 12-15 foot range.

I am really not sure why we magicians try to hide the fact that we are controlling the music. If this is not an issue, the remote is smaller than the average palm and not a distraction to pick up and have in open air to get the distance.
One could put it on a hold out and just bring it to and and out of site after the quick click. I have done this.

However I see nothing wrong putting some industrial velcro on the back and making a belt clip. Just put it on the side facing your PA and click as you turn. Who really cares if they know it is you. It is more important that the music changes on cue rather than how clever you are in clicking your heals or getting your hand in your pocket.

The Volume control on the Tunestik was only tested with the FM transmission. It is not controlling the actual ipod volume but what it is broadcasting via the FM broadcast. I am not sure if you use line level from the pass through if the volume control on the remote will still work. One way around it would be to get a small digital FM radio and tune it in. Since the pod will be next to the little radio one could FM broadcast to it if the volume as a must. As I stated, I am not sure if you go through the pass through port if the Tunestik will have any control over the volume since with line level you can not control the volume either like you can with the head phone jack.
Or for that price maybe someone will be brave and crack open the tune stick to see if there is any space to build in a pass through for the head phone.

However if you have an different ipod than the nano and some others, you might still have the use of your headphone jack which then I would say you will not have any volume control via the Tunestik remote if you have the headphone to RCA cable hooked in.

SO for $20 some of you out there might want to give it a shot. At that price you can look past some of its drawbacks. I might be just enough for your situation. You also might find it for less on line but not by much after postage. At least at a Marshall's/TJMAX you can return it if you open the package nicely.
Message: Posted by: MaxfieldsMagic (Nov 28, 2008 12:02AM)
[quote]
On 2008-10-19 12:43, Neznarf wrote:
Don't know about the POOR MAN but here a new offering:

http://www.pro-magic.com/shop/product.php?productid=183&cat=0&page=1
[/quote]

I like the basic idea of this system, but the technology looks a little out of date already - specifically, SD cards seem to be on their way out, no? For the price of this unit, I'd definitely want one that could accept audio files directly from a computer, or operated off of a thumb drive rather than an SD card (or even in addition to the SD card). The coolest thing about this system is the clandestine nature of some of the optional transmitters, but the TT and wand transmitters don't even come with the basic package, I can't see walking around for any length of time with a marker pen in hand, and you still don't have any speakers. For the same $1,000, you could buy an iPod, remote, and a set of powered Roland PA speakers with an iPod plug-in and tripod legs.
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Dec 18, 2008 10:26PM)
Well micro SD are not out yet. What is a thumb drive? USB drive? mini SD cards are the size of a thumb nail and have high capacity now. Many come with an SD adapter.
Message: Posted by: JohntheMagician (Feb 9, 2009 07:33AM)
Ok it's Feb 2009 - 3/4 of the items listed are no longer made or available.

So I need a sound solution for my Children’s act. I have a nice laptop available and an Apollo PA system what do you all recommend as a low cost {under $400} solution for remote controlled sound.


Thanks
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 9, 2009 12:42PM)
John,

For programmable PC Remotes you got a few solutions

1) http://www.l3sys.com/keyrf/keyrf.html
About $195.00

2) http://www.krubow.com/Products.htm
About $65.00

3) Talk to Kerry Pollack from Wireless Wizardry. Ask him
about the playing card size receiver and Mp3Tech remotes.
Kerry's team can program their remotes to generate Hotkeys
so you can control Winamp.
Call for pricing.

Then for the best possible audio get an Echo Audio DJ Card.

http://www.echoaudio.com/

Available in Express Card and Type II Cardbus.

Get it TRUST ME, its Highly reviewed and praised, or just waste
your time looking for a better audio card.

G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Feb 9, 2009 04:59PM)
Someone told me recently that in the recent versions of Winamp, you can reprogram how Winamp responds to keypresses. Which means that you can get an inexpensive RF remote that only sends certain keystrokes, such as for Powerpoint presentations, and make it play the next track in Winamp, stop and fade out, etc.

To find this in the current version of Winamp, hit CTRL - P to open Winamp's preferences, then click on "Global Hotkeys" under General Preferences on the left. Click the "Enabled" checkbox and then you can redefine how the keystrokes the inexpensive remote sends can be reconfigured to make Winamp do what you want.

The drawback is that the inexpensive remotes have much shorter ranges - only about 30 to 35 feet. The Key RF remote will work up to 150 feet. I haven't tried out the Keith Rubow version to see how it works.
Message: Posted by: magic4545 (Jan 27, 2010 01:12PM)
I use an EEE PC with Winamp and built in bluetooth. Irxon Bluetooth keyboard. Reprogram up/down/left/right for play, fade to stop,back to previous song, forward to next song. The number 1 lowers volume, the number 9 raises it. No real need for the volume, but I've got a bunch of extra keys there, anyway.

Use a graphics program to give huge lettering names to the songs, and I have my cue display on the laptop.
Message: Posted by: magic4545 (Jan 27, 2010 01:16PM)
[quote]
On 2006-12-18 22:30, Stevethomas wrote:
A poor man's remote sound cue is also known as a "girlfriend".

Steve
[/quote]

It seems that the only magicians familiar with that term are the married ones!
Message: Posted by: magic4545 (Feb 1, 2010 12:58PM)
I just received the Keith Rubow USB Remote, and, I've got to say, it couldn't be any better for a belt mounted remote. All that I can say is awesome! Can't wait to use it!!!! Better than what I expected!!!
Message: Posted by: Waterloophai (Feb 1, 2010 03:18PM)
[quote]
On 2010-02-01 13:58, magic4545 wrote:
I just received the Keith Rubow USB Remote, and, I've got to say, it couldn't be any better for a belt mounted remote. All that I can say is awesome! Can't wait to use it!!!! Better than what I expected!!!
[/quote]
Can the remote also kept in the trouserpocket?
What ar the dimensions of the remote?
Message: Posted by: Waterloophai (Feb 1, 2010 03:22PM)
[quote]
On 2010-02-01 13:58, magic4545 wrote:
I just received the Keith Rubow USB Remote, and, I've got to say, it couldn't be any better for a belt mounted remote. All that I can say is awesome! Can't wait to use it!!!! Better than what I expected!!!
[/quote]
I have a second question also.
Is it possible to obtain a second remote and if yes: is it possible that the two remotes (programmed in the same way = clones of each other) work simultanuasly?
For example one in your pocket or on your belt and a second one in another place (table or apparatus)
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Feb 1, 2010 04:26PM)
Email Keith Rubow, I did use 2 remotes about 4 years ago and they worked. They have to be programmed seprately.

Keith is an eletrical/radio engineer- I have been ove his house a few times.

His remote have raised buttons so you can't place them in your trousers (pants).

Keith remotes use WINAMP and his software RFremote.

I would highly advice that you learn how to program the remote using RFremote by heart. Once RFremote lost the settings and I reprogrammed everything in less than 1 minute.

Currently I use the Mp3Tech remote and a cardpack USB receiver. Its expensive but I like it.


G0THIKE
Message: Posted by: magic4545 (Feb 1, 2010 05:18PM)
http://www.krubow.com
Message: Posted by: Bill Knight (Oct 8, 2010 02:01PM)
I know that this is an old thread but, as a new member of magic Café, can I just thank everyone for their input, you have just saved me a fortune. I used to use a roland sampler for my sound effects but I had to physically press a button on it for each sample. That tied me to wherever it was located and didn't look that magical but now, thanks to technology and very good advice, things are about to go to the next level.

Once again, thank you to everyone who offered advice & opinions, it really helped

Bill
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Oct 8, 2010 08:58PM)
Funny thing is that you can get something that will work like the Roland sampler, which plays mp3s from a flash memory card, very inexpensively (under $100.00) now. So you could set up the same sort of system easily if you wanted random access to tracks and didn't mind if people saw you press buttons.
Message: Posted by: Bill Knight (Oct 9, 2010 02:27AM)
You're right Jeff, the sampler has served me very well and, if you position it right, no one needs to know it's there and they won't see you push the buttons however, not being able to play an intro that starts while you're off stage can be a bit limiting. I am only talking about childrens magic here, not a vegas stage show lol. I am completely on my own to set it up (I need my laptop for the games music anyway) and to run it (I used to be a computer tech/sales guy) so for me, the laptop - remote - winamp combo is ideal but, having said all that, I won't knock the sampler I used as it did it's job very well indeed and, as you said, if you need a sound out of sync or impromtu, just push the right button and it's there.

Bill
Message: Posted by: Lynchini (Oct 24, 2010 02:56PM)
This is really great stuff! WOW! I'm thinking of using this information to the fullest! My main objective has always been: "How to get the greatest sounds, etc; to be played in future shows, on a remote level! And making it as compactible as possible for transporting!"
Regards, Lynchini
Message: Posted by: shawn popp (Oct 30, 2010 01:00PM)
So as of now, what is the popular consensus as far as using a laptop or net book for music? I've been using an icue2 but as I add more sound files, its easy to lose track of what's what. If I miss one, then I'm off... I really want something other than a red blinking number to tell me what track I'm on. I'd like to have a display that will tell me the track or even the effect. I've seen it mentioned that winamp has the ability with a plug in to fade and pause tracks. I'm willing to spend the money for the setup, just would like some current advise as far as computer/netbook, software, remote (although the Keith Rubow remote looks like the answer)
please help.

thanks
shawn
Message: Posted by: Bill Knight (Oct 30, 2010 05:21PM)
Shawn, this is how I am set up, I have a netbook running windows xp & winamp with an rf remote conected to my mixer and speaker. I have named each track on the netbook after the effect it is used for ie: colouring book helper up, clap etc. I have even created some 1 second long silent tracks for use where I have an effect not using audio. This way I have a running order for my show which acts to remind me what effect is next (very useful when adding new stuff or trying a new order) and If I try to get an adult up to help in my kiddies show and no-one will come forward, I can easily skip through any tracks that I need to by-pass to get on with the show. I have various playlists saved for different shows (birthday, christening etc) or I can alter existing playlists at the venue if needed.

Hope this helps

Bill

I find this to be a very versatile set up but with a couple of limitations, I can't just press a button on the remote to play a pre-defined track out of order and the remote that I am using is a bit limited.
Message: Posted by: Bill Knight (Oct 30, 2010 05:23PM)
I don't know what happened with my last post but the bit after my name just randomly appeared, oh well, it is halloween after all

Bill
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Oct 31, 2010 01:16AM)
Shawn - Go to my website, read the "Tips" page and it will tell you how you can customize the size of the font that Winamp uses to display the playlist. You can make it big enough to fill the entire netbook screen.

http://remotelaptop.tripod.com/

Winamp also has the ability to fade out a track when you stop it, built-in. It's a setting in the preferences.

Bill - You're right, the netbook/Winamp solution only works for a playlist in order. For random access to cues there needs to be another solution. You have to have a remote or small panel with a bunch of buttons, one for each sound effect. Then there needs to be a device (like the Sparkfun MP3 Trigger board I linked to in another post - http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=9715) configured with your sounds. If you have the knowledge it's pretty easy to set up the Sparkfun board, and the advantage is that it's small (only 2 1/2" by 2 1/2"), but if you're not familiar with hobby-level electronics you'd need to find someone to set it up for you.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Nov 29, 2011 07:41PM)
It is interesting to see what has changed since this was started. Many products for magicians or industry are out of business.

What is the smallest presenter remote with decent range on the market that can work with winamp? What is the size?
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Dec 2, 2011 02:21AM)
As the guy who put up the website that explained this idea (back in 2000! Before the iPod!) I can tell you that the presentation remotes seem to change annually. There are many available if you search for "Powerpoint remote control" on Google. However, they all work the same way, with buttons that are set up to control Microsoft Powerpoint.

You need to use a piece of software that will let you change what keys the remote presses. Keith Rubow has one on his website, listed above. There's also a Winamp Hotkey utility that lets you set up your own hotkeys to control Winamp.

After that, it's just look through the listings and find the remote you like. The main thing about all of these is that the receiver is usually a small unit that just plugs into the USB port - so there isn't a big antenna sticking out of it. That means the range you can walk away from the laptop and still control sounds is limited to about 50 feet. That's not a problem if you're aware of it. If you need more, then you need a better quality remote than the cheap mass-produced ones you can find on Google. Go to my website and look up the KeyRF remote - the receiver has an antenna that you can raise, which gives you 150 feet of distance that you can go and control the music.

These days you can use any cheap laptop. One of the netbooks is fine, they're all much faster than laptops used to be. I should update my website with this information, but since the iPods took over this function, no one asks about it anymore.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Dec 4, 2011 10:01PM)
What is the size of the Rubow one It looks so BULKY like a garage door opener. I can not see that working in the pocket safely.

You can SAY you can use ANY cheap laptop but that is limiting the software you can run. I guess if it is really cheap it would OK for a short while.
I guess if willing to invest you can get a brand new Acer 10.1" net-book with Win7 starter for $250 or so. Plus Key RF remote at $170 and do it for under $475
Some might not want to use their laptops but if you have one already sure keyRF might work.

While you might think ipods took over, I see it as computers are the future since for a show, you can do more than what an ipod does.

Hey, just noticed this USB one that will do PP, Itunes and a/v... I wonder if it works... http://www.buyijet.com/remotes/ijet-usb-wireless-remote-media-controller.html
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Dec 6, 2011 12:56AM)
The only limitation for an inexpensive laptop is if it can run Winamp (for music cues). These days even the low-power net-books are more than adequate for that.

The reason I mentioned iPods taking over is because most people looking into this only want music they can play via remote. So if you get an iPod and a remote control, it's small and light and takes no space. However any net-book has an advantage in that the screen is relatively big and you can see across the stage what the title of the tracks are.

Nothing is that expensive anymore, just pick what works for you.
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Dec 6, 2011 03:40PM)
Well surely if you have to buy everything outright iPod system will be less expensive. Yes it will be more compact.

Really who has time to break flow looking at a screen 10or more feet from you? Really if your remote is good and if you have practiced your program , I see no benefit to having a screen. You should already be well aware of where you are in your program and what track is next. If you know your shows, a screen or large LED number track is not useful. If you really need a reminder, you have not practiced enough. Better to take an index card to the floor of the stage or on your table if your memory is short. What it seems more use it for is to verify the remote and receiver has communicated. but if your remote is good, well, then you should know if your track is playing or not.

Where a computer excel right now is on the extras like cross fading or fade to next track pause. While you can set your ipod levels for EACH song in itunes, and I was told you could do this even with nano 3G, I have not had time to verify. But PC software does this these things. ie if you play from itunes or other player with the feature.

And as some have mentioned, there is other software out there that you can buy to control more than sound. So I see that as expandable,


I would have agreed with you Jeff, about ipods but as the remotes are limited that match a pro remote, they are not the end all in my opinion. The compact size and range is the issue. If the products out there could get a good range and be guaranteed no false hits, then yes, I like the ipod with a silent track. It seems only to be missing the cross fade feature.

This can be fixed to customized the music to the routine and not having extra music.
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Dec 11, 2011 01:39PM)
I wanted to update on my experience with Buyijets.com so far.
I had just picked up a ijet nav boss and it just would not work with my system. I am using an ipod nano G3 and I was having too many missed cues and the range for it to work was only 10 feet.
Now I have tried others that had ABT technology and had the same results.
The Customer service has been great with Buyijets. They took the unit back without issue and tested it at 100 feet.

I know some here use the ijet nav boss with great luck and the technical engineer said that some units have created some noise to cause problems or it could be issue in my area from other devices.

the Ijet nav boss uses 433 mhz band.

Now I will tell you I have been using a DLO Homdock music remote for 2 years with small LCD read out. The range is nothing short of spectacular. But the remote recently died. I had a Square Trade Warranty on that so was covered. When I went searching for a replacement , knowing this had been discontinued , not finding a new one.
Then I happened to see buyijets.com has taking over this product naming it ijet nav PRO.

I only just got their version Friday and tested it Saturday. So far it performs the same as the DLO homedock.

According to Buyijets they have changed some features. First they changed the battery manufacturer. They also removed the need to download play-lists. Before if you made changes on your ipod they had to be downloaded into the remote. Now it reads your ipod in real time. But if you want to disable the real time LCD read out you can run it in IPOD mode.

I will not go into a detailed review until I test this version a bit more but so far, you can get this at a great price for the performance it provides.
They seem open to improving it for the entertainment market.

This remote is very responsive and runs on the 933 Mhz band. Maybe that is why I do not have issues. I wished the nav boss worked since the price is right but for me it was a no go. If I upgrade my ipod I might try it again however. But you might find there are some benefit to having the lcd read out. I would also like to try their USB remote.
Message: Posted by: Lars (Dec 19, 2011 04:59AM)
I don’t post to the café very often but I thought that I would share my experience with regards to playing music in my show.

I use an Asus Eee pc bought on EBay for £50.00. On it I run a program called Soundplant (http://www.soundplant.org/). The software will let you assign a song or sound effect to any key on the keyboard. There are several settings for each song, volume, pause, fade. You can save different configurations if you are doing different shows. I use 3 different configurations for 2 children’s show and 1 show for adults.

To control it I use the usb remote from Keith Rubow. Because of the way I can program the remote I now have access to play 4 different sound effects and 5 songs all controlled by the 6 button remote.

If I want to change the music or sound effects for a show it takes me less than 5 minutes to re-program Soundplant and the remote.

The total cost for this is less than £100.00 it is easy to use and set up, and the range on the remote is very good.

This set up might not be to everyone liking but it does all that I need at a low cost.

Lars
Message: Posted by: Michael Messing (Dec 19, 2011 07:17AM)
Since some have posted some issues with the iJet NAV Boss, it really appears that it depends on the interference you might be getting (as Powermagic pointed out.) I usually have my iJet NAV within 10' of me when performing. (On stage, I use a direct box to run an XLR cable from my table to the PA so I can have the iPod near me even on a big stage.)

Last Saturday night, I decided to test the distance I could use the remote successfully. I had a 1-hour wait while my party was eating so I was in the room across the hall. It was at least 35 feet away but I could still see my iPod from there. I tested it several times during the hour (PA was turned off) and the iJet worked flawlessly. Obviously, there was no interference in that facility.

Fortunately, if you do have issues, the customer service at BuyiJet.com is excellent.

Michael
Message: Posted by: daxi (Dec 19, 2011 11:14AM)
I have googled "iJet NAV Boss" Take care using these. I have just looked at the specifications & they operate on 433.92 MHz. I can't say about the United States, but this is the frequency used across much of the world for car immobilisers & other low power devices. It's also in an amateur radio & military etc allocated band. I am sure many will have seen issues where people are locked out of their cars in certain places. It can also cause unwanted activation.
It's called Electromagnetic Incomparability...Or more accurately, poorly built receivers that cannot cope with out of band strong signals which causes a failure of the intended use..It's also called stupid use of the wrong frequency in the case of car immobilisers, as the problems are far from expected.
The 433.92 MHz allocation is in the amateur digital centre of operation. This means that unlike speech modes, the band can be used for prolonged transmission periods to send for example slow scan TV images.
The frequency's beside this 70 cm band allocation is used by things like mobile phones & in the UK Police digital radios. These remote devices will not cause amateurs, the military or the Police any problems at all & it is a legitimate frequency to use.
HOWEVER...I can for example as an amateur legally run well over 100 watts (& I am capable of doing so with many watts left in reserve), whilst this iJet device runs at millionths of a watt. To put that into context. My 5 watt watt UHF handheld radio will jam a car so it cannot be locked or unlocked at about 150 yards, whilst set to 1 watt & the military & mobile phone operators can & often do run a lot more than my permitted maximum power level.
In most locations & situations it should be fine, but do not assume that just because someone else is not using it as you set up, or start your performance, that they will not be using it later.
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Dec 20, 2011 02:17AM)
Lars,

Glad to hear someone's using Soundplant! I should have thought of that setup myself.

Jeff
Message: Posted by: rxwookie (Dec 21, 2011 01:58PM)
Okay, so bear with me... this is a long post.

You can trust Michael Messing on anything magic/sound related. I know him personally and can vouch firsthand for his expertise in this area. He helped me out a lot.

You can use just about any Powerpoint presentation remote to control Winamp. This is becuase they work by sending a (virtual) keyboard command to the computer via wireless to USB. These remotes are configured from the factory to work with Powerpoint (and other presentation software programs). If you can find out the virtual command being sent, you can use it for your own purposes.

For example... the Logitech R400/800 Presenter has several buttons. Pressing the play button sends an F5 keystroke to the computer. Pressing it a second time sends an Esc keystroke to the computer. Next slide sends a page down, while previous slide sends a page up. Blank screen sends a period keystroke.

The trick is finding out what keystrokes are being sent. This is easier than you would think because there is a list of fairly standard commands used in Powerpoint and other presentation programs.

Start Presentation: F5
Next: N, Enter, Page Down, Right Arrow, Down Arrow, Spacebar
Previous: P, Page up, Left Arrow, Up Arrow, Backspace
Blank (Black) Slide: B, [period]
Blank (White) Slide: W, [comma]
Restart from Last Slide: Shift+F5
End a Presentation: ESC

----

Once you know the keyboard commands being used, you can effectively repurpose the remote to control Winamp.

Winamp 5.xx
- Right click anywhere in the program --> Options --> Preferences
- General Preferences --> Global Hotkeys --> check both boxes
- Customize the Hotkeys

Here are some commonly used ones for magicians
Playback: Play/Pause (default action): Use this combined one to save a button.
Playback: Next in playlist (default action): Cue up your next track
Playback: Previous in playlist (default action): Jump back one track
Playback: Volume up (default action): Increase volume
Playback: Volume down (default action): Decrease volume
Playback: Stop with fadeout (add action): Immediately fade and stop
Playback: Stop after current (add action): Play remainder of track and stop
Playback: Toggle shuffle (add action): Toggle shuffle

If the action is already present...
- Highlight selection, click in 'Hotkey' box, press desired keystroke on computer, and click 'Set'

If the action isn't present...
- Change the 'Action' drop down menu to the appropriate one, click in the 'Hotkey' box, press the desired keystroke on computer, and click 'Add'

For a four button remote (most common), I'd suggest
- Play/pause (the combined one)
- Next in playlist
- Stop with fadeout
- Stop after current

Load playlist and first track is sitting in Winamp ready. To start, press "Play/Pause" followed by "Stop after current". If music runs all the way down... no problem it stops and waits. Finishing early or audience participation/selection track, use "Stop after Fade" when neded. When moving to the next item in show, click "Next in playlist" and you're set.
You can use Audacity (freeware) to edit your music volume levels as well as length, tempo, preset fades, etc. This eliminates the need for volume adjustments. You shouldn't need to go back if you've properly set up your playlist AND if you need the shuffle feature, set it in advance.

----
There are several nice remotes you can use, just go to your local electronics store and get one to try out. Everyone is different and everyone prefers a different setup.

Finally, don't forget the cables (make sure you note the genders of the cable ends)...

1.) Mini Adaptor Cable (1/8” Stereo Male to Single 1/4” Stereo/Mono Male TRS)
** Optional: 1/4” Female TRS to XLR 3-Pin Male Adapter (runs the sound at a higher level, thanks Michael!)... I found this at my local Radio Shack but it's also available on-line.

2.) Mini Male-to-Male Cable (1/8” Stereo Male to 1/8” Stereo Male)
** Often forgotten, but allows direct connection to a smaller sound system (boombox, etc)

Anyway, hope this helps someone!

Kyle C. (RxWookie)
Message: Posted by: miscoes (Dec 31, 2011 12:05PM)
" Optional: 1/4” Female TRS to XLR 3-Pin Male Adapter (runs the sound at a higher level, thanks Michael!)... I found this at my local Radio Shack but it's also available on-line. "

Please, take caution. When using this type of adaptors:

- You are putting L and R channels in a balanced input so vocals and sounds placed in the middle of the mix can dissapear (like in cheap karaoke processor)

- If you plug your player via this kind of adaptors in a micropone input with Phantom Power enabled (as usual for condenser mics and active DI boxes) you will fry your player output circuits in a fraction of a second.



It is very easy to recycle that kind of adaptors to make them sure for Phantom Power and to avoid L+R+Phase problems. You will only need a pair of resistors, a condensor and less than 5 minutes soldering ( less than 1$ )

So, please, take caution when connecting devices to XLR inputs.
Message: Posted by: Powermagic (Jan 9, 2012 07:35PM)
I think if not going with computer you will like the NAV pro. So far so good with this version and as stated, the range is best for the money your going to find.
Message: Posted by: Arepsi (Jan 11, 2012 04:19AM)
In my opinion AirClick is still the best. You can find those from ebay at 5 bucks and people will gladly sell theirs old Ipod classic. Works like a dream.

Arepsi
Message: Posted by: magic4545 (Jan 11, 2012 10:23AM)
The only one that has the one click fade to cue is Winamp for Windows. There isn't one for Winamp for Mac. The Mac simply doesn't have or allow for this at this time.

The Rubow has been working fine for me since this thread began. I have it in my coat pocket or pants pocket. I don't think that it would work reliably while wearing tight jeans.

I'll bet that Keith would do some cool stuff if he were to see some ankle/toe switches.

JF
Message: Posted by: Ekuth (Jan 12, 2012 08:46PM)
Just wanted to say thank you to all who contributed to the info in this thread, especially the list of Powerpoint keystrokes. Just got myself a presenter (SwissGear... as of Swiss Army Knife fame) and have it set up to run Winamp. No more running back and forth to the MP3 player for me!
Message: Posted by: teoswand (Jan 25, 2012 12:16PM)
Hi guys...I am trying to make my cheap system .....
What I have at the moment...Happy Amp 2.0 , Samsung Galaxy S2 - android with great mixing music apps....
Idea is to connect phone and happy amp, run the application...BUT....what I need now it to solve the remote control problem...
Do you have any where to get remote controler which I could use for switching the songs, making pauses....I am thinking about bluetooth earplug it has all what I need but the music will not go through sound exit...
What do you think
Message: Posted by: teoswand (Jan 25, 2012 12:25PM)
Sorry for double post..
so I am looking for something like AirClick but for android phones...
Message: Posted by: Phoenix Montgomery (Mar 18, 2012 08:37PM)
[quote]
On 2006-12-18 22:30, Stevethomas wrote:
A poor man's remote sound cue is also known as a "girlfriend".

Steve
[/quote]

BAHAHAHAHAAHA! Amen!
Message: Posted by: Phoenix Montgomery (Mar 18, 2012 09:23PM)
I don't suppose anyone's thought of a way to run basically the same setup at Keiths USB remote, but to a mixing program on ipad/ipod? The convenience of only having to plug in your phone or ipad would be of great benefit. I looked into ijet, however the buttons are limited. There are some good dj mixer programs similar to winamp, but a 3rd party remote seems tricky to find as ijet & even if you were to use the iphone, basically work with itunes only, as far as I know.
Message: Posted by: Phoenix Montgomery (Dec 21, 2012 06:23PM)
I would try LIVE Cues.. way more features. The IOS version is out January, but the Android versions are already out... If you have both phone & tablet version you can use the phone as a remote control to the tablet, otherwise each operate independently as sound cue systems, complete with autocue, individual track volumes, cross fades, fade, and even video out capability... Pretty much an all in one.

http://www.facebook.com/LiveCues

The actual apps are at:

Phone:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.livecues.phone&feature=search_result#?t=W251bGwsMSwxLDEsImNvbS5saXZlY3Vlcy5waG9uZSJd

Tablet:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.livecues.tablet&feature=search_result#?t=W251bGwsMSwxLDEsImNvbS5saXZlY3Vlcy50YWJsZXQiXQ..
Message: Posted by: teoswand (Mar 13, 2014 04:50AM)
Any updates on your systems...

How do you remotely control your music now days.

I was thinking about getting something like:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_igd4bLAIg

https://www.thalmic.com/en/myo/
Message: Posted by: gothike (Mar 14, 2014 10:51PM)
Myo looks cool.

The only problem I see is that as magicians we are performing and MYO might get too many false triggers.

We use our hands and arms muscles in too many ways during a show. I could see it not working for manipulation guys..