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Old 01-24-2011, 04:48 AM #33
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

Just use some GSI Lumonics galvos, those mirrors are big enough for CVL beams.


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Old 01-24-2011, 04:50 AM #34
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

hahahaha noooooo I just bought my DT40W's - not forking out for more galvos

I bet the GSI's are 12kpps due to the huge mirrors, or sound like a wasp nest when scanning
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Old 01-24-2011, 04:51 AM #35
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

You don't need those little things, I'll take 'em off your hands. I do know that the price for them recently went up at CTLasers, from $550 to $600.
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Old 01-24-2011, 05:05 AM #36
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

Since they arent used, you can have them for the $600 + post I paid for them. Otherwise they are going in my projector :P
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Old 01-24-2011, 05:15 AM #37
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

Heh, to ship 'em safely from you to me would probably cost more than a new set of 20ks from Space-Las. Thanks for the offer though.
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Old 01-24-2011, 05:22 AM #38
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

There was no offer - it was sarcasm - I just got word that they have arrived at LSP and I should get them thursday. Then I start saving for the FB3 and quickshow, then the *gulp* 900 mw kvant 640 red.
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Old 01-24-2011, 07:51 AM #39
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

The FB3 and Quickshow is absolutely amazing

I've had mine for around 2 years now and never once regret buying it. aXit (Another Aussie on this forum) just got his FB3 and QuickShow today and loves it

Not that Pangolin needs any reference, I think their reputation speaks for itself

Can't wait to see the Kvant beast! I'm going to be lacking red in my projector for a while, until I can afford to buy a bigger 640 (Orrr maybe if I'm lucky, a 1W red diode like the 445's will come out )
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Old 01-24-2011, 08:21 AM #40
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

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The FB3 and Quickshow is absolutely amazing

I've had mine for around 2 years now and never once regret buying it. aXit (Another Aussie on this forum) just got his FB3 and QuickShow today and loves it

Not that Pangolin needs any reference, I think their reputation speaks for itself

Can't wait to see the Kvant beast! I'm going to be lacking red in my projector for a while, until I can afford to buy a bigger 640 (Orrr maybe if I'm lucky, a 1W red diode like the 445's will come out )
The FB3 is what, $60 in parts, and people *cough* aXit *cough* (Ahem, sorry for that, I should go get some cough drops for that) hail it as the best thing since sliced bread.

The only reason why people buy it is because of the software. You can't get software of that level anywhere else on the market, Pangolin has a monopoly, especially with LiveQuick and LivePRO.

People buy it because they need the functionality the software provides, and because there's no other alternative out there, no competition.

Don't even get me started about the QM2000. To begin with, what are they gonna do when PCI is phased out over the coming years? Not to mention it uses obsolete, slow, single-rank SDRAM (yes, SDRAM. That died out circa 2003). So, what's their contingency plan- sell us those $600~ QM2000.NET enclosures? The sad part is, it'd work. There's no other option.

I'm not the only one who feels this way either about their hardware either; nor am I surprised.

Case-in-point: If Intel had this sort of monopoly on the computer market, we'd be paying $1000 a pop on 5-year-old low-end CPUs, simply because there's no other alternative.

If you've ever used LivePRO, you'll know just how advanced their software and software platforms in general are. Shame their hardware platform is nothing more than a polished turd.

Not everyone can afford to pay so much for the projector, my projector budget is more or less the price of an FB3. In the end, you have to find an alternative way of doing what LivePro and/or LiveQuick does for you.

And getting laughed at by said FB3 owner and being told it's impossible to do it. OK, I get the point; you paid that much for one of the best live-show options out there. I don't need to have it rubbed in my face repeatedly, I have other people for that.

You'd think someone who's building a projector with the intention of doing a live show would realise what a goddamn cue-board is.

Yes, they existed. And yes, they had lasershows before they had computers. And yes, there were no FB3s back then. But-

"O NOES WITHOUT FB3 LAZORSHOW IS CRAPPINGLY"

It isn't all about the equipment you use, a large part of it depends on the skills and abilities of the operator behind the equipment.

Have you ever seen a Laserium projector? It's completely controlled from a cue-board, with no DAC involved at any point.



And, I'm being told that's not possible (or even the fact that good shows aren't possible) without an FB3. Oh no, I don't have an FB3, my shows are going to be shit-ass.

And no, I'm not paraphrasing either. If your creativity extends to using software to automatically beat-match, play cues, and live-sync shows to music, then so be it.

If you can do it yourself, the solution exists in most projectors already. It's called that crappy "OH MAH GAWD MY GALVOS ARE HAVING AN EPILEPTIC SEIZURE" device called the 'sound' board.

Most people simply see one of those and turn their nose up at them. Little to they know that DMX512 was invented for a good reason. Little do they know that nearly every aspect of the show (from the colours currently projected, to the pattern being displayed and the size/position of the pattern or abstract) can be controlled manually through DMX512.

Give it a good DMX controller (with audio beat matching, tap-sync and enough physical faders), and you can more or less do it manually at a fraction of the cost. Not to mention, if you're part of a technical or stage crew, the DMX controller will be useful for many things outside of running your laser.

Last time I tried explaining that I got an earful from the Pangolin-fanboys here. Reminds me of the whole ATi vs nVidia fights you'd see on forums over completely pointless, irrelevant and stupid topics such as the colour of a card's cooling fan shroud.

The bottom line? If you can't afford it, you improvise. The end solution may not be as 'good' as something done with the FB3, but for most purposes the audience won't even notice or know.

And DMX512 isn't the only solution out there either- if you look, there's plenty more.

How any of that was relevant, I have no fcking idea. But someone mentioned the FB3, didn't they?

Regarding the galvos, the DT40 Wides are cheap compared to some of the other options out there. And with their small mirrors, you'll be losing massive amounts of power regardless what beam diameter you use. At their wider scan angles, only 1.5mm or less of a given beam will make it to the Y galvo. This has implications even if you do choose to use 640nm. You want wide scan angles? You pay the price in terms of power.

Proper wide-angle galvos with larger mirrors (think CamTech) cost much, much more. I'm sure if you've ever been to the CT Lasers website, you'd know. And if you want to keep all your power, they pretty much are the only option.

Eye-Magic also makes galvos capable of wide-angle scanning, these are sold by JMLaser as the M9024 series.

Ask anyone who's used Eye-Magic or CamTech galvos before, and they'll tell you they're amazing.

Low Cost Laserscanner - short info - JMlaser Laserdisplay

Did I miss anything? Oh, look, a speck of dirt! Never mind it, it's the janitor's responsibility.

Oh, wait. This isn't PhotonLexicon.

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Old 01-24-2011, 10:04 AM #41
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

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Name ONE DAC that has the same software capabilities as the FB3? With the amount of work and support you get with the package, thats worth the money alone (Heck, Pangolin even decided to send me a T shirt and some other stuff completely free)



Yup, and for a good reason. The software works, and it works well, and Pangolin is always standing by to take suggestions and bug reports (They're even giving away free stuff on PL for people who report bugs!)



Well, your alternatives are the soundcard DAC, which is barely compatible with any recent versions of Windows,
RIYA, which is a reasonable, cheap DAC, but lacks in the software department
Moncha, well, it's $1000, so we won't even go there.

And thats your choice. Pick one :P



Once PCI is fased out, maybe they'll consider upgrading the board, but until then, I doubt you will have trouble finding a computer with at least one PCI port. Even then, if it does get phased out, prepare for a bombardment of cheap, reasonable PCI including systems! Don't need any high end computers to run the software, why upgrade? Considering most people just have a single computer they use for laser shows anyway, not to play the latest games on.


Yes, you can argue their hardware is not expensive to build, however even if $500 of the cost was towards software development, it exceeds any other software in features on the market. Don't get me wrong, ********* and many other programs are great, and everyone has to start somewhere (Heck, I even want to continue using ********* if the soundcard DAC would work on Windows 7!), but the software is so jam packed with features.



Yup, and nothing stopping any other companies developing a DAC and a great software package to go with it. Pangolin don't go and sue any other DAC/software producers.



Like you said, it's not about the hardware, it's how you use it! If it outputs projections on the wall like you tell it to, it qualifies as a DAC, what else do you want it to do? Predict the future and adjust scan rate to the response time of your eyes to minimize flicker?



Yup, and this is where the cheap DAC and software combo's come in. To be honest, Gary selling ********* for $120 is a great price. I can't even imagine the amount of time he spent on the software getting it to the point it is now, and time is money these days. I didn't start out with a FB3, heck I was using the soundcard DAC for at least a year before I switched. Some people have more money than others, fact of life, nothing anyone can do about it.



Impossible to do what? As far as I can tell, no one was ever rubbing it in your face. If thats how you perceive it, it clearly wasn't the intention. (Assuming you are referring to aXit and I here). It was purely excitement on aXit's part. You can't say you've never got a new toy and not had to show it off to people.



Yup, and thats exactly what Quickshow and LivePRO/QUICK are, cue boards. Click on a cue, it shows up on the projector. Up sides?
1. It doesn't weigh a ton and a 1/2.
2. You can easily program your own content. OK, you can do that on a cue board too, but if you could do everything on a keyboard more efficiently, why was the computer mouse invented?
3. Unless you build your own, the price of a cue board system is going to cost you easily 4 times that of a LD2K system. Add to the fact that you might find 1 popping up every year or so, and also add shipping, you've got yourself a multi-watt RGB system with whatever DAC/hardware system you want.
This is going back to your "outdated" argument. Cue boards are outdated. Yes, they are still used, yes, I'd still love to use one, but there is a reason computer based controllers were invented.



Exactly, so whats the problem with the FB3 being made with maybe $60 in parts? If you could really be bothered wasting your time (and effort), you could manually send each set of frame data to the FB3 via serial commands if you want.

No laser show is "crappy", each one is unique, and once again, does not rely on hardware like you mentioned. I could wave a mirror around and it'd still produce a reasonable beam show. Will it look bad? Probably. Does it work? Yes.



Possibly because laseriums were around way before any computer based DAC's existed? Same reason people still use manual lighting desks, because they prefer it over software. If you'd prefer a cue board over software, so be it, however come to any graphics and you are screwed.



Dunno where you heard this, at no point in time did we say shows look shit without a FB3. Referring to yourself once again, "It all relies on the operators abilities, not the hardware" I've seen some pretty damn good shows come out of the soundcard DAC, Riya DAC, pretty much every DAC. Soundcards weren't designed to be laser controllers, as such they may have a few flaws, but nothing stopping anyone from making a stunning show with it.



If the option to make such a thing easier exists, why avoid it? Sure a computer is not going to be as good at beat matching as a human, but apart from laserist meets, no one is going to watch your laser and point out the flaws in your beat matching. They're there for fun and entertainment.



OK, well if your idea of a "good" laser show is Chinese characters and random English words, combined with a circle or 2 and a square, then sure you can make a laser show out of it. Will it be boring? Very much so. I doubt you will find ANYONE who would recommend using the supplied "show card" on a projector of any decent hardware capabilities.



DMX was invented purely for lighting control, so that you didn't have to lug around a desk with build in dimmers. It was also far more reliable than analog control signals, and could be used to control many more dimmers at once. When DMX was invented, intelligent lights digitally controlled lasers were still decades away. OK, you can change the apsects of a pattern, but you can't actually change the pattern. 1/2 the patterns loaded on those cards are various sayings in both English and Chinese, and beam shows made from text are not effective. Like I said, you could be creative and manipulate the circle and square you get, but once you get bored of that, then BAM, you can't do anything original with your projector, so you just wasted money on it. Not to mention the show cards have a horrible output signal, you'd get better looking patterns sticking an antenna on your galvo signal wires and picking up radio transmissions.



If you don't mind being stuck with a few boring animations/patterns, sure, you can use the show card, but you might as well glue some mirrors on motors and you'd get more patterns for sure. Have you seen ANY high end galvos (Or even semi-high end like the DT series) that come with show cards? I sure haven't, and theres a good reason for it.



Theres a good reason people recommend Pangolin, and if you want to see a completely moot argument, I'd point to this one. Get a DAC, create some stunning software for it and I'm sure you'd have fanboys too. Has anyone done that yet? Well, close, ********* has fan boys (myself included), and I truly support Gary and his works on *********.



Yup, the audience don't give a shit if your laser scans at 12Kpps, they aren't (usually) there for the light show, however creating extra work for yourself and limiting the capabilities of your scanner because you don't like someones hardware/software is pointless. I still do shows on the light desk, and always will, however why use up to 23 faders on your light board to control an intelligent light, when you can click a button and spin a few knobs to do it much quicker and efficiently?



There was actually talk of DMX512 being phased out and being replaced with ethernet based systems. Are people going to throw out all their DMX stuff and upgrade? Maybe, if they have the need, but if DMX works for you and your setup, why waste money on new protocols if you could buy some more/better lights.



They sure did, and I simply pointed out my experience with it, and how I feel about the software. I'm not telling anyone to buy it, I'm not working for Pangolin, I don't distribute it, but if I find a product that I like, and works well, I'll recommend it.

Sorry, but just because you can't afford something, doesn't give you the right to talk crap about a product. I can't afford the Kvant red Ben is buying. Do I complain that its a crap product, when I've never seen or tried it? No. I just find it funny you refer to outdated products yet cueboards and the DMX512 protocol are centuries older than pretty much every computer controlled DAC on the market.

Sorry about your thread vk2fro

[/QUOTE]

You seem to have forgotten about the EasyLase USB, or some of the members of the RIYA family higher up the food chain.

In terms of price and functionality, all are superior to the FB3.

The only thing the FB3 has going for it is the software, and that' it.

And the reason why it's so popular? There's no other alternative solutions out there, nobody makes something as comprehensive, easy-to-use or as sophisticated as Pangolin's software.

Their hardware sucks. Their software is epic. Now, allowing that software to run on other hardware, such as the RIYA Pro platforms, or the EasyLase II, would be a big plus for them.

If you can afford the software to do it, then go for it.

Meanwhile, if you say it can't be done, then it can't be done. You two are always right.

It's always my fault, my personality flaws.

I'm not talking crap about it, nor am I the only one sharing these sentiments.

The j4cDAC project didn't start for no reason, you know. Just ask anyone working on said project, including heroic.

If you think I'm just being pissy because I can't afford one, so be it.

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Old 01-24-2011, 10:20 AM #42
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

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The Easylase USB and RIYA dacs did get a mention, be it non directly. You do realize that EVERY DAC uses the same hardware, a DAC converter chip. Unless you want to physically nitpick the differences in the DAC processing chips themselves, there are no differences between the Easylase, RIYA (All of them), Moncha, and the FB3 included. The LD2K is different in the fact it does all it's processing onboard, but get yourself each one of those DAC's, and you'll find they are all exactly the same (+ and - features such as DMX etc).

You will find that with laser projector DAC's, the software will always be the selling point, unless you are looking for a stand alone application. ********* is $120, and does not include a DAC. Is it worth $120, definitely, but it does not matter which DAC you use with it, it's how the software uses the hardware. Obviously Pangolin have found the best way to do this, and use it as a selling point, and good on them.
You do realise that none of those other DACs are restricted to a single software platform, right?
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Old 01-24-2011, 10:27 AM #43
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

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Actually, you are wrong in that regard, Applications for the LD2K system developed by PL users exist (Mikkojay created one a while ago to generate fireworks in real time), and Pangolin have been working on a SDK for for the FB3. Although no one is pushing them to complete it in a hurry, for reasons already explained to death.
Can you go and buy/download an off-the-shelf solution for them? LFI seems to be the only software that supports the FB3, and it's only a player.

You can argue with me tooth-and-nail, including dragging up irrelavent topics and sprinkling it with DMX bashing.

Go on, nothing's stopping you. We can argue day and night about nitpick points that, in the end, nobody gives a flying fuck about.

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Old 01-24-2011, 10:54 AM #44
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

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Firstly, I challenge you to make it for $60, get off it.

Secondly, personal attack? Why? I never said anything as dramatic as you seem to quote me; and anyway, I can have an opinion, I wanted it, and (eventually) could afford it, so what do you have against me spending a little more for what I perceive to be a better package?

You've often rudely made reference to money I've had, saying I could afford anything in the scanner, but so what? Just because it's there doesn't mean I want to spend it. This scanner project has been going on for over a year now, me keeping an eye out for deals, and on the galvos and the laser, I think I got good ones.

My scanner isn't the best, and I'm not trying to convince anyone it is. But I'll make it how I want, and if that involves splurging on the DAC, because I see that as one of the most important parts, then so be it.



Thanks Things, appreciate that. And yes, I was a tiny little bit excited.
Did I say I could do the DAC better? No.

You know what? I'm not going to even attempt to be civil any longer, I see no reason at all as to why I've been trying to be nice all along.

I don't fucking care if you get an FB3. I don't need you to tell me 3000000 times over, repeatedly. There's nothing wrong with that, however, the way you put it...

I don't actually give a shit, you've established long, long ago I'm not going to get my hands on one, end of story. I don't need to be specifically addressed, and told, about every single thing you do to it, or do with it.

Fair enough? The way say it doesn't make it any better, I can turn to my parents if I want someone to be patronising, or if I need something to be rubbed into my face repeatedly. Telling someone is one thing, rubbing it in their face repeatedly is another.

I don't know whether it's just a personality flaw, or whether you intend to be so patronising about it.

I could go on, but I won't. There's so much more that could be said here.

Not to mention the hypocrisy about me being rude. So it's always my problem, as always.

Did I mention the whole thing about safety? You trying to convince me that I'm not doing things right, even though I've set the paperwork out to the very same ILDA guidelines as everyone else uses?

What about your whole interlocks thing, complaining that I don't have enough interlocks, while your idea of an 'interlock' is a mushroom switch and relay across the USB voltage feeder?

Good thing I'm busy setting up VMs tonight, I haven't even scraped the surface.
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:10 AM #45
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

Whats going on with this thread things?
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:11 AM #46
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

vk2fro, sorry, just a few arguments broke out and I wanted to keep your thread clean
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:13 AM #47
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

Ok - thanks mate - yeah look forward to playing with my fb3 with my little projector, and showing off that 640nm kvant laser. Its gonna cost me a pretty penny though!
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:42 AM #48
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Default Re: Building of THOR has begun

Yeah, like things said, just got a FB3, love it.

Set up the whole thing roughly today, green only, nothing bolted down. Feels amazing to see all the images after a year of this project. ;D

Good luck with yours.
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