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View Full Version : Question on setup...E681/Renard 24



Donny M. Carter
02-06-2012, 05:32 PM
Hello all! I'm looking for suggestions on how I should setup my controllers this year. I have 3, E681's and 5, Renard24 HC's. I was gonna run one cat5 from my LAN to a switch. From one port on the switch go to my E681's, that's all good! On the second port of the switch go to a EthConGateway which I will connect my Renard's programmed with DMX. My question is, does this make sense? I don't have the gateway yet. Should I just run a second cable and run the boards with Renard protocol? I'm running LSP software if that makes a difference! I have done a lot of reading and studying trying to learn as much as possible. Just want to get things running early! Thanks for any help and advice!
Donny

mschell
02-06-2012, 05:51 PM
Donny,
Sounds like you've got it figured out fairly well.

The Ethernet connections to both the E681 and EtherConGateway are correct. You can't daisy chain the E681s, you'll need a port on your switch for each E681, unless you have another small switch in the same box as an E681.

Note that depending on the model of ECG, you can either output DMX or Renard protocol from each output. So if you want to use Renard firmware on those boards, or use Ren-DMX firmware, it's your choice.

The beauty of the ECG and E681 is that LSP doesn't have to know what is on the other side, the controller takes care of mapping it to the right place and the right protocol.

Donny M. Carter
02-06-2012, 06:07 PM
Thanks Mark! I do have a switch in the enclosure with each E681 so I can kind of daisy chain them. Now to make sure I'm setting them up correctly in LSP! Thanks again!

Donny

CaptKirk
02-06-2012, 07:15 PM
I keep seeing a switch mentioned in these discussions. Do we really need a switch, or would a dumb hub also work assuming the network is dedicated to E68X's??

mschell
02-06-2012, 07:35 PM
A hub would work, and wouldn't be very different from how the switches are behaving in this application, mostly because it's just daisy chaining along.

Also, since we're using multicast (broadcasting to any and all listeners), a switch wouldn't really be isolating much traffic anyway.

Donny M. Carter
02-06-2012, 07:36 PM
I keep seeing a switch mentioned in these discussions. Do we really need a switch, or would a dumb hub also work assuming the network is dedicated to E68X's??

I'm using Trendnet TE100-S5 switches. Trendnet was recommended to me by Jim St. John.

Donny

akonkman
02-06-2012, 10:06 PM
I have a related question: I also plan on running a few E1.31 devices this year. Would you recommend creating an "isolated" network for the computer running the show and the E1.31 devices, separate from the rest of the house (which runs off a wireless router with Internet connection)? Or would it be totally fine to connect the switch to the router so that everything in the house can "see" everything else on the network? Just curious, since we're using multicast... I don't want to send a bunch of traffic out over the wireless network or to any other devices that are wired to the router (for example, a BluRay player or XBox 360) if I can prevent it. But then again, I like the convenience of being able to remote desktop into the show computer from another computer on the wireless network. Perhaps some configuration on the router can provide the isolation I'm looking for? Or perhaps two NICs in the show computer could serve the purpose?

mschell
02-07-2012, 02:31 PM
This question has come up before, and probably will again.

I would recommend that you use a separate network to run your show. Having a second NIC in your show computer is the easiest way to do this. Have the second NIC feed your E1.31 network. That way, you can still connect to the show computer from your "home" network, but not have the show traffic bog down.

It's not that using the same network for both your house traffic and the E1.31 won't work - it's more that it keeps things separated so that something in one area won't interfere with the other.

Just be sure to specify the correct network card (NIC) when you setup the E1.31 plug-in/output. It should show up as "Local connection 2" or something similar. You'll have to set a static IP address for that second NIC, and for the E681 or whatever other devices you use.

Zeph
02-07-2012, 04:25 PM
OK, a good way to isolate the traffic while remaining connected is to have two NICs in the show computer - one connecting to the home network and beyond, one just to the e1.31 based controllers.

NICs are cheap for desktop computers.

Any recommendation for a laptop computer as show computer? Cheap network switch with VPN (suggestions?)? USB 2.0 to Ethernet dongle?

mschell
02-08-2012, 12:21 AM
You should be able to get a USB-Ethernet dongle starting around $25-30 that should do what you need. I did a quick Google search and found quite a few.

Barnabybear
02-12-2012, 07:47 AM
Hello all! I'm looking for suggestions on how I should setup my controllers this year. I have 3, E681's and 5, Renard24 HC's. I was gonna run one cat5 from my LAN to a switch. From one port on the switch go to my E681's, that's all good! On the second port of the switch go to a EthConGateway which I will connect my Renard's programmed with DMX. My question is, does this make sense? I don't have the gateway yet. Should I just run a second cable and run the boards with Renard protocol? I'm running LSP software if that makes a difference! I have done a lot of reading and studying trying to learn as much as possible. Just want to get things running early! Thanks for any help and advice!
Donny

Could in theory a Renard with different software accept the ‘pixel‘ data stream from a E68x?
It would effectively grab the data relevant to its number of channels and rebroadcast the rest, effectively behaving like a group of pixels.
From hardware side it looks possible dependant on transmission speeds and the max323 (could this be removed & wire links added to bridge 11->14, 10->7, 12->13 & 9->8 some form buffer or coupler would be better).
This would to some extent avoid needing to run 2 separate systems side by side & make it easy to add intelegent pixels to an existing display item, such as a mega tree.
Just to clarify. The Renard would control all the things it previously did in your display – it would however get its serial data (in a different format) from the 'pixel' data stream (output) from a E68x. The E68x getting its data (input) via the E1.31 transmission. Leaving the rest of 2040 the channels on your E68x for intelligent pixel control or other Renard units, or a combination of both.

Bretk
02-15-2012, 03:30 PM
Donny,

So you are making the switch from LOR too. I am planning a hybrid show this year, as I already sunk $$ into S3

Bret

Donny M. Carter
02-15-2012, 06:15 PM
Yes! I sold all my LOR stuff, ordered 4 E681's, 6 Renard24 HC's, and a ton of pixels from Ray. I also placed a large LED pre-order. I'm not keeping track of how much I spend. Better to not leave a paper trail!!


Donny,

So you are making the switch from LOR too. I am planning a hybrid show this year, as I already sunk $$ into S3

Bret

Davor
02-17-2012, 09:04 AM
Instead of buying a USB to ethernet dongle. Wouldn't it be possible for a laptop to use its wi-fi adapter for accessing the LAN and use its ethernet port for the e1.31 network?

cessnapilot
02-18-2012, 07:49 AM
Another option is to have the E68x setup to DMX on one of the groups and load the DMX firmware onto the Renard controllers.

CaptKirk
02-18-2012, 07:52 AM
Is that really a universal capability? It seems like many of the Renard projects do not do DMX...

mschell
02-18-2012, 09:50 AM
Instead of buying a USB to ethernet dongle. Wouldn't it be possible for a laptop to use its wi-fi adapter for accessing the LAN and use its ethernet port for the e1.31 network?

Yes, this is definitely possible.

You just need to be sure you pick the Ethernet port when configuring the E1.31 plug-in.

cessnapilot
02-19-2012, 03:40 PM
Is that really a universal capability? It seems like many of the Renard projects do not do DMX...

I was under the impression that it should work for most of the Renard boards if you load the DMX firmware.

budude
02-19-2012, 04:06 PM
I was under the impression that it should work for most of the Renard boards if you load the DMX firmware.

They do indeed - there are some caveats with the addressing and way they use the DMX data stream (there is no THRU on most Renard controllers) but it works just fine. I've been running DMX on all my stuff for 3 years now.

Now - I'm not sure I would run my show with my show computer via wireless however - especially with the heavier activity from E1.31 (assuming several universes of data). It depends a bit on how "clean" your WiFi spectrum is in your area - it might work - but then again it might not... For testing the setup - no doubt - great way to go.

jeffk13057
03-01-2012, 12:05 PM
Hi...

A little computer naive here. Sorry if this has been asked before or seems a little er um simple.

If I used a USB Ethernet dongle on a USB port, would that serve as a network switch? Or is it better to just get a network switch ? My computer is a little older (2002 I think) and doesn't have a bay for installing another NIC so the dongle, if it works, would be great.

Thanks...

Jeff K
Syracuse

Davor
03-02-2012, 07:51 AM
If I used a USB Ethernet dongle on a USB port, would that serve as a network switch? Or is it better to just get a network switch ? My computer is a little older (2002 I think) and doesn't have a bay for installing another NIC so the dongle, if it works, would be great.


A USB to Ethernet dongle would just be like having another Ethernet port on your computer and does not function as a switch. Having two Ethernet ports will allow your computer to use ethernet port #1 to connect to your home's LAN (or the Internet via your router) and use ethernet port #2 to control your boards via the E1.31 protocol. A switch is originally for connecting multiple computers to your home's LAN. In this case, it will be used to daisy chain multiple E681 boards together.

jeffk13057
03-02-2012, 08:01 AM
Thanks Davvor. Here's another question: I have a computer that's a little old and has only one Network Connection. There are also no bays to install another one. My uneducated intuition is telling me I should just pony up and get a new machine. But I have all sorts of ham radio software on it. Is there a way that I can connect another network card to it under these circumstances? Perhaps the USB Ethernet dongle takes care of this if it goes to a USB port? As you can tell I really have no clue when it comes to computers.

Thanks again.

JK

mschell
03-02-2012, 01:13 PM
Jeff,
While just adding a USB Ethernet dongle doesn't make it a switch, your computer is intelligent enough to know to use one Ethernet port to talk to your LAN and use it to browse to the internet, while at the same time use the USB Ethernet to talk to something else.


What your computer won't do without adding a program or software is automatically route something from one Ethernet port to another. So you couldn't add another computer to the end of the USB port and expect thtat you could surf the Internet "through" your existing computer.

Does that make sense?

jeffk13057
03-02-2012, 01:18 PM
Hi Mark. Thanks. Yeah I guess it does. So if I add an Ethernet dongle, and have my Verizon fios on the regular LAN as is already, can I add a network switch to the ethernet dongle and run a seperate network from there?

Ugh. Thanks again. Jk

mschell
03-02-2012, 03:20 PM
Yes.

The USB Ethernet dongle will give you another network, which will be separate from the FIOS network.

If you only have one device to talk to on that separate network, then you don't need a switch, but it would be useful if you planned to add anything to that separate network now or in the future.

jeffk13057
03-02-2012, 09:12 PM
Mark....thanks so much. I may need to put you on the payroll!

Appreciate the help. Have a great weekend.

Jk

mschell
03-02-2012, 10:57 PM
Donations are always accepted, but I don't need another job right now! :)

Give me about 10 years and I'll be happily retired and available for a "small" consulting fee!

jeffk13057
03-02-2012, 10:59 PM
One last thing....what kind of Ethernet dongle are you using?

Jk

Davor
03-05-2012, 07:26 AM
One last thing....what kind of Ethernet dongle are you using?

Jk

Just about any ethernet dongle will work. Do a google search for "usb ethernet adapter" and you will find a wide range of options.

CaptKirk
03-06-2012, 08:09 PM
How about this one:

http://dx.com/usb-10-100-rj45-ethernet-network-adapter-dongle-2797

10/100
$4.80 no tax, free (sometimes very slow) shipping.

jeffk13057
03-06-2012, 10:11 PM
Thanks Davor and James T.

Jeff k

mschell
03-06-2012, 10:15 PM
If you're looking for something quickly, and are willing to pay a little more, you can always get a few at Wal-mart. Go to Walmart.com and search. There were a few "name brand" like d-link or netgear ones that were available for "Ship-to-store".

Amazon is another option, as well as a few well-known web stores like NewEgg. Should be less than $30 in most cases.

I'd stay with one where you know you can get some support and drivers for popular OS's.

jeffk13057
03-06-2012, 10:27 PM
Thanks Mark!!

Jk

Jeff Millard
03-13-2012, 08:43 AM
Thanks everyone for this thread. Several of my questions were answered without my having to ask... :thup:
Jeff