Programming Shortcuts in ONYX

When it comes to ONYX, there are a lot of shortcuts that I like to make my life easier. Here are four of my favorites!

There are a ton of features available in ONYX to save time and frustration when it comes to programming lighting. If you are just starting out with lighting or perhaps just have a little less experience than others with ONYX you will find these tips and tricks quite helpful!


If you are not familiar with “load” you will find that this feature is such a great way to create an amazing look on stage. Whether you are working with clients or working on your own, you can use this feature to take something on stage such as a color or lighting combination that you may not have in your presets and repurpose it. It allows you to be able to extract things from existing cues and readily use them again.

How to Use Load

To use this feature you simply press “load” and “enter” and in your programmer you will get everything that’s not in its default value. Anything that’s active in cues anywhere will pop up. You then have the ability to reorganize, combine, or filter out, and record your new set somewhere new to use at will.


Another great feature to help you save time and will make you a faster programmer is the “edit” feature. With edit you have the ability to load a cue. When you pull up this feature the filter will come up with everything currently active and inactive. You can load a cue from any place, anywhere, and once it’s loaded you can easily grab your lights and update your preset.

When you update your show using edit you can actually keep the show going seamlessly while editing.


Update can be used for a lot of different things. It gives you the option to update without loading a cue first. You can select the things you want to alter, watch them change in the visualizer, and press “update”.

One thing to note is that when you press “update” and you have a lot of different cue lists coming it’s going to show you in a box that pops up any cue lists that possibly apply. You have the option to select multiple or even all of them, as well as deselect anything you choose and then update with ease.

Record, Load, Or Update

When you press “record, load, or update” you get a pop up that certainly the majority of you have seen and is easily noticeable. Something you may not have noticed is that there is also a star that pops up. Selecting this star saves whatever you’ve got selected as the options by pressing “merge”.

This is incredibly beneficial for saving a step and easily merging cues. As long as you have pressed the star after choosing your options it will show the very same ones for you the next time, and you always have the option to reset or restart them.

Fade and Delay

Within your presets you also have the option to add fades and delays. You can ultimately put anything you wish into a preset with ONYX including choosing lengths of delays or timing of fades.

This feature really does wonders for helping to keep transitions smooth and simple.


Using these available features in ONYX gives you the opportunity to create a really amazing and diverse show. You can pick and choose which features you want to incorporate and when to give your show a unique flare each time. These features not only make for a better show, they also help to make you a more efficient and time savvy programmer.

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