This week we’re discussing why I promote only certain consoles. In this week’s podcast, I want to go in deeper into what I look for in consoles and why I recommend the ones that I do.
One of the videos I shared earlier this year was a cost breakdown of some of the bigger name consoles. You can check that out here: Should I Use Grand MA3, Vista, Hog, Chamsys, or Onyx?
As the podcast and the resources that Learn Stage Lighting offer, I am beginning to consider some alternate sponsorships from companies that are involved with the stage lighting industry. I can be reached at [email protected]
Main Segment (4:38)
If you have been following Learn Stage Lighting for a while you may notice that I do talk about consoles a lot. The reason why this is and why it’s so important is because it is the brain of your set up.
When talking about consoles it’s a real passion of mine to recommend only the best consoles of each class (similar to a class of cars). To get started with reviewing a console there are four main factors that I weigh out.
The first factor I look at is functionality. Function to me is the most important part of a console. Basically does the console function and do what it needs to do for the user.
One of the things I look at is it buggy, does it do what it needs to, and is it reliable? I prefer to recommend consoles that are easy for new users to use and if it’s easy to learn how to use.
The next thing I look at is the pricing. To me, price does matter. I like to review what are you going to get for that price. What comes with it?
I also try to look at multiple pricing points and what different needs to do these consoles meet?
Another thing to consider is growth. Every user is going to have a starting point. But I do want to know how much a user can grow with the console. How far will this console allow the user to go with the production?
As your show and setup will change I want to be able to recommend a console that can be used and be able to handle all the changes.
When working with software and stand alone consoles I want to know how that a console will be able to be used for years to come. Granted when working with equipment and technology it’s not always easy to guarantee that it will last for ears to come.
If a console has been around for a few years, has updates, and changes then most likely that console will be around a long time. With the newer consoles, I like to talk to the developers and see what their long term plan is for the console.
Consoles I Recommend
Over the years I’ve worked with many different kinds of consoles. So, with that there are some great consoles that I like to recommend to my listeners and readers.
These consoles you may have seen tutorials, posts, and even more in-depth training on Learn Stage Lighting Labs. When making recommendations I do want to make note that there are other great consoles in that class.
The three classes or general buckets for consoles are beginner, intermediate, and pro.
On the entry level, I often recommend the ENTTEC DMXIS because it does what you need it to do. It’s easy to learn, it can control lights, and it’s a reliable console to use.
Price wise, there aren’t a lot of price points for this unit because it’s a simple and easy to use console. The price range for this unit is normally around $300.
For the more growth level, I recommend ENTTEC’s D-Pro and it’s a more of an intermediate console. It’s still easy to use, the programming does happen faster, and it can do what you need it to.
D-Pro does offer multiple price points that it offers its users and this allows the user to be able to grow. With D-Pro you can continue to add more lights and still have control over your units.
Work Pro LightShark
The LightShark is a more of a newer unit and it is similar to D-Pro. I do consider the LightShark an intermediate console because for price points it does offer a lot more for it’s users.
The LightShark is designed to grow with its users and it can handle 8 universes of DMX output. This unit is still newer and has been out for a couple of years. It is a stable unit and it is reliable.
Elation / Obsidian ONYX
The professional console I recommend is Obsidian ONYX. For professional consoles, there’s a lot of competition out there. But I try to recommend a console that is PC based as well as good software.
What I see in this unit is that it’s a unique platform and has a lot of features to offer to its users. Functionality wise it’s a great and stable unit. For the pricing, in my mind, you cannot beat the pricing points for the users.
The last console I like to recommend because it is a Mac base unit. This unit does have it’s own pros and cons. It is a easy unit to learn so it’s great for those who are just starting out.
My concern with this unit is that as you add more lights, cues, and such the unit can become easily cluttered. Also, the price point for this unit is more expensive than the other units in its class.
Every year there is new equipment coming out and I do test most of these units myself. To me it’s my responsibility to my followers to prove the most accurate and reliable information to help them make the best decision for their lighting needs.
As I mentioned earlier in this episode I want to hear from you about how can I make this podcast be around for a while. Should I take on some sponsors to help offset the costs? Or would some listeners consider a patreon?
On next week’s episode we have our Q+A Tuesday episode where I take and answer questions from listeners like you! Be sure to tune in!