The Parameters
103
A Basic Checklist to Help Define the
House Lighting Console:
•Themanufacturer,model name, and software
version of the console.
•Theactualconditionoftheconsole,including
any history of problems and the last date the
console was serviced.
•Thelargestnumberofdimmersthattheconsole
can address. The number of dimmer outputs
located on the back of the console.
•Thelargestnumberofchannelsthatcanbe
controlled at any one time by the console.
•Thelargestnumberofcuescontainedwithin
each RAM allocation (or disk).
•Isthelightboardatrackingorpresetconsoleor
both? Can cues contain hard zeros?
•Theabilityofpointcuestobeinserted.
•Thenumberofchannelsseenoneachrowof
the channel intensity screen and the number of
channels seen on each page of the channel intensity
screen.
•Thenumberofcues(listedwithtimedurations)
seen on the cue list screen.
•Thenumberofsplitfaders.Thenumberofcues
that can simultaneously occur.
•Thenumberofphysicalsubmastersandtheir
possible attributes. If the capability exists, the
number of pages.
•Thenumberofpossiblegroups.
•Numberofmonitorsrequiredforfully
functional system (showing channel intensity
and cue list information).
•Theexistenceandtypesofmonitorsforthe
production table (black and white, or color).
The existence, condition, and length of monitor
cable. Typical path and destination of monitor
cable runs in recent past.
•Theexistenceofafunctioningalphanumeric
keyboard to label the cues.
• Theexistenceofafunctionalprinter,anda
printer cable to interconnect with the light
board.
•Theexistenceofafocusremote.Itstypical
location, condition, and history of problems.
•Thetypicallocationofthelightboardinthe
theatre. The distance to the stage, to typical
rental dimmer rack locations, to the center of
thehouse.ThelocationofanyDMXlocations
withinthetheatre.TheexistenceofanyDMX
cable within the theatre.
•Anyhistoryoftheconsole’susewithanyoff-line
editing programs. If so, can such a program be
used?
•Namesofotherproductionsthathaveusedthe
console in the recent past. Names of the lighting
designers or production electricians, who, when
contacted, may provide additional insight to the
console or the personnel operating it.
A Basic Checklist to Help Define the
House Manual Light Board
•Thetype,manufacturer,andmodelnameofthe
light board.
•Theactualconditionofthelightboard,
including any history of problems and the last
date the board was serviced.
•Numberofpersonnelrequiredtooperatethe
light board.
•Thenumberoffunctionalscenes.Thenumber
and identity of nonfunctioning sliders, handles,
or knobs in each scene.
•Thenumberofscenemasters.Thenumberof
scenes that can be simultaneously active.
•Thenumberoffunctionaldimmers.
•Anyspecificswitchingrequirementsneededto
allow for independent control of the scenes.
•Thetypicallocationofthelightboardinthe
theatre. The distance to the stage, to rental dimmer
racks, to the center of the house. The type of plug
connected to the cable controlling the dimmers.
If the condition or functions of the house lighting
console initially seem inadequate to the needs of the
production, the entire situation should be carefully
analyzed before the choice is made to reject that con-
sole and replace it with a different board. If install-
ing a replacement console is viewed as “breaking new
ground,” the issue of compatibility in every connec-
tion and protocol must be seriously reviewed. The
apparent advantage of working with a more pow-
erful console may not be worth the additional cost,
effort, and potential time that may be lost making the
replacement board function within the house system.
If this seems to be a possibility, it may be prudent to
consider the adage “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” and
every work-around allowing the house lighting con-
sole to be used should be considered. The replace-
ment console can easily become a disruptive element
to a previously functional system.
Other situations may preclude this issue. When a
production utilizing color scrollers is to be presented
in a performance facility that has a two-scene preset
light board, there’s no question that the house board
will be unable to control the scrollers and create the
cues required. The performance will require the use of
both the house board controlling the house dimmers

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