Martin 2518 DMX Controller

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Rich@RPM Music

New Member
I bought a Martin 2518 DMX Controller and am unable to save programs. I can get the MX-4s to operate, change colors, change gobos, etc, but I cannot figure out how to program the darned thing. This is my first time with a DMX controller and I've noticed that some manufacturers offer video instructions (YES, I can read! It's just that the video version might offer a different perspective). However, I have not seen a video offered by Martin.

Can anyone offer advice on programming?
 

NickyB

Gear and Equipment Moderator
Rich -

The 2518 is one of the easiest controllers to program and it has one flaw that I'll tell you about at the end of this post. Connect and address you fixtures to the dmx channels for the fixture buttons on the left. It would help if I knew what fixtures you were using so I could help you group them. I will 'assume' you have four MX-4's. Address the first to CH.1, the 2nd to CH.7, the 3rd to CH.13 and the 4th to CH.19. These addresses correspond to the 1st four buttons in the verticle row on the left of the controller.

Set the bank number in the LED display to '01'. Now activate all four of the fixture buttons on the left so their corresponding LEDs light up. We're now ready to start programming. Here's how to program a simple sequence. Move the faders until you get all the MX-4's to light up, choose a gobo, color and set the mirrors to point the beams to the left - all four will move together. This is called setting a 'SCENE'. Once done, press the STORE button, then press scene button #1 along the top edge. Next, readjust the faders to move the mirrors all the way to the right. Now press the STORE button, then scene button #2. Repeat the process of adjusting the faders to put the mirrors at difference locations and change colors until you've loaded all 6 scene buttons. From this you can see that you've just set up six scenes. Now deactivate the fixture buttons (their LEDs will go out) and hit BLACKOUT. 'PATTERNS/SEQUENCES' are nothing more than SCENES that are run sequentially... so to activate a sequence, we need some sort of trigger.

You have a choice of MUSIC, AUTO or you can MANUALLY bump through the scenes one at a time by just pressing the SCENE 1 button, SCENE 2 button etc... The AUTO trigger does the same thing...press it TWICE slowly - the time between two presses determines the rat of the trigger.
The MUSIC trigger does the same only it listens for a good strong bass beat.

While the MX-4's are stepping through the six scenes, activate one of the fixture buttons on the left, then move one of the faders (color, pan or tilt). You'll notice that the scanner you selected will come out of its programmed mode and you've got manual control via the faders. When you release it, it'll go back to programmed control.

Read the dmx table in the manual and find the music trigger value for moving the pan and tilt functions. Make good use of it while building other scenes; it'll save you a lot of time positioning mirrors and save you a lot of programming time.

Oh yeah, the one bad thing - DO NOT PRESS the STORE button while running a program, it will overwrite whatever is written in the memory.
To prevent this, I stacked two flat washers over the STORE button and taped them in position with black electrical tape so I couldn't hit the STORE button accidentally while running programs. I can't tell you how many times I screwed up my programming before I realized how to protect against my own fumble fingers!

Good luck and you know how to find me!
NickyB
 

Rich@RPM Music

New Member
Len,

Thanks for your help in the Dells! You're always there with a helping hand - thanks!

NickyB,

Thanks for the detailed info. I printed it out and will try it tomorrow. The lights right now are 2 Martin MX-4s, 2 Chauvet Insignia, and 2 AMDJ Rainbow 250s.
 

James Kane

New Member
Does LightJockey handle the upload of the *.mem files as well, Brandon? I've seen that you can create them but didn't find an upload module.
 

djcarl

Active Member
Brandon is correct, Lightjockey can down load the .mem file into the 2518. Download Lighjockey from Martin, configure your lights, program your sequences (you cannot do cues, macros, or other complex programming, fade time, scene time, ect.), and download thru the serial port into the 2518. Cool thing is you can make multiple shows and keep them on your laptop and download them to the controller. The download function in under the "Download" menu choice at the top of the screen. You will also have to configure (in the hardware setup screen) the 2518 to work on the serial port. After you download LJ open the download menu and click on help, print out that page, it will help you a lot. Also you can printout the other help sections on creating scene and sequences.

Just remember sequences only. The 2518 does not have enough processing power to handle the macros (so don't use them in your sequences, standard scenes only) or cues (regular or transparent cues) so you have to do something similar to the DMX operator type controllers, except you get the ease of Lightjockey to program the sequences. Much easier. Then after you see how much fun lightjockey is then you will pop for the dongle ($800-$1200) and pull up to a full light controller.

Hope this helps....
 

BillESC

Member
Hey Brandon,

Having fun yet?

Learning Light Jockey will become a pursuit of collected abilities as time goes on, the power has only juct begun.
 

James Kane

New Member
Okay... not to sound dense here but what version of LightJockey allows the uploading to the 2518? I have been playing with Version 2.5 build 1.

The relevant help passage is:
LightJockey may be used to create program sequences that may be downloaded and played back from the Martin 2518 DMX controller. Note that it is not possible to download directly from LightJockey to the 2518 controller. After selecting the sequences to download a special file is saved to harddisk - to download the file to the memory of a 2518 controller, a special 2518 upload/download utility program must be used.
One still needs the Upload/Download Utility and a Win9* machine. I'd really like to upgrade that last Win98 machine but am holding off until there is a solution to do this under WinNT-derived kernels.
 

djcarl

Active Member
Opps, Sorry.... James is correct. LJ can create the .mem file and then you have to use the free loader program from martin to transfer the files in/out of the 2518.

I keep forgetting they have not implimented it. You can use the 2518 as a controller to use the faders connected to it to access functions in Lightjockey. Arrhhhh. We have been asking for this to be included within LJ and most of the beta testers have asked but they keep telling us that it would make the program too big. This is along the same lines as all of us users who bought Denon CD players with the RS232 that would connect up to LJ for time code control (this never happened either even though it was published in all the sales/lititure).

Also James....Having talked with the rest of the beta testors and Jens they will not support NT for LJ. Only 98/ME/2000/XP will work with LJ and they are not back writting for NT. So upgrade to 2000 is about the only choice. I just upgraded my win98 machines to 2000 to control LJ. Also have a machine on XP controlling LJ. You have to configure the system differently to get the USB dongles to work in 2000 & XP.

Sorry about the confusion.
 

James Kane

New Member
Carl,

By WinNT-derived kernels I meant Win2K and WinXP. :wink: I never owned NT as it was too expensive and the software I needed didn't even run on it! Worked great for Office though. :?

Brandon,

My 2518 has been upgraded to the 2.0 Roms. Still nada. I can control LightJockey with it but it doesn't do the uploading. I once tried to contact Martin about the protocol they use to write a Win2K and later version myself, but I never got any response.
 

Brandon Fisher

Active Member
James,
Sorry can't help you there, I have never done it I just know it can be done. Maybe Bill C. can give you some help with Martin tech support.
 
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