Tracking -- GRRRR

Tonight must be my night for questions

im sitting here programming my board for services tomorrow, and im getting bit by tracking problems. If everything stays in order i wont have any problems, but if for some reason i have to skip a cue, things tend to get ugly -- what is the appropriate solution?

  • Tim,

    Can you tell me a bit more about the problems you're seeing?

    If you're using GoTo to jump around in your cuelist, the console should still be able to correctly calculate the output state based on where you are in the cuelist. Some of your transitions may look a bit odd (especially if you see changes of position, colour, and beam in fixtures that are on), but you should end up in the proper state.

    This can get even more confusing as you work with playing multiple cuelists and they interact with each other, but there are some things that can make life easier. If you can give me a few details about what you're running into, I'm sure we can help to get it straightened out.

  • well -- prehaps im seeing things (its def possible) but it seems like sometimes i use the goto and cue number and it seems like things dont end up in the state i expect -- i only have desk channels -- we are still designing the moving light rig, so all im controling is intensity. For example, things that are supposed to be on -- dont seem to be or are at the wrong intensity. This could be operator error rather than actually being in the wrong state. It may also be the result of copying cues from place to place -- I keep my "stock" cues in a list (on fader 8) from which i copy them into the proper order for the service and then run them -- What i am seeing may be the result of this process rather than my skipping around in the cuelist.

    prehaps im attacking programming incorrectly - basically i do this --

    i keep a show stored on my hard drive called BASE SHOW -- its got my patch, groups, and my "Stock" cue list and a linked cue list that is timed out to our opening video segment. When i get ready to program the services for sunday, I open the base show, and immediatly re-save it in a different folder (given the days date - for example tomorrows folder is called 04-22-2007)

    The next step is to copy the cuelist for the video to my running master (master 1)

    then, i start copying cues out of master 8 (my stock cues) into the running master(s) (if the two services are different, i set each service on a master and transition between them inbetween services.

    Once i get all the cues in the proper order, i run through it, adjusting timings etc and finally run it a few times to make sure it all looks right.

    If this is wrong or bad or less than optimal, please let me know and get me on the right track.

    In addition, id like to start scripting cue series (or other methods) for various songs that we do (this will be more so when we get our moving lights and LED fixtures).

    when I have programmed our big shows in the past (on my GSX) i have just programmed all this in the cue stack and run it that way, but i want to find the BEST or HOG way to do it so i can make our services look totally AWESOME!

    thansk for all the help and input

  • Hi Tim,

    I run HOG iPC for my church. I read your other threads too. Seems like your getting to know the Hog fast and under the gun. My Hog II is a bit rusty but I can get you started on some basic checks.

    For now, turn on the Output screen so you can verify what the levels are depending on how you run the cuelist.

    Also, check your Control Panel and see if you have Edits Track Forward turned on. As well, under cuelist Options is Use HTP off or on?

    As a reminder, if you have say Channel 1 in the programmer during playback of a cuelist, the programmer has higher priority than what the cuelist is playing back (higher or lower). That can certainly make it seem like your cuelist is acting weird.

    Hope this helps. If your still at it tonight and need more direct help then contact me.
  • Hi Chris -- thanks so much -- Im home and just finished watching the race, but i will check those items when i get in there tomorrow. I try to get in by 7:30 or so so i can run over stuff and be relaxed adn ready when first service starts at 9:30. Im getting there with it -- last week programming took me about 5 hours -- tonight it was really done in about an hour or so -- the rest of the night was mostly me fooling around and working on our new rig that im designing.

    Thanks for the input - hope your services are great tomorrow

  • Just working on this here i sure can see where people want more than 2 screens -- with the Hog 2 PC thats all i have -- eventually i may get larger touch screens and be able to run a couple extra windows open with the HOG 3 PC -- hopefully we are getting our upgrade this week!

  • Tim,

    If your "stock cues" don't have data for all parameters of every fixture in your show, then they may play back differently if you change the order that they are in (which I assume is happening when you build your cuelist for the service.

    I'll give you an example that should illustrate why this happens. Imagine that your stock cuelist has 8 cues. Each of them has a single desk channel at full. Cue 1 would have desk channel 1, cue 2 would have channel 2, and so on. When you play back cue 8 (which only has channel 8), you see channels 1 through 8 all at full because those levels have tracked into cue 8 as nothing else has overridden their levels since they were brought up in earlier cues.

    If you now copy some of these cues to a new list, you are only copying the data in the cue and not the state of the output. State is the term we use when discussing tracking to describe either the cumulative output based on playing a single list or the entire output from the console for all cuelists playing back. If you have copied cues 1, 3, and 8 to a new cuelist and you play them in order, you are only going to see channels 1, 3, and 8 on stage.

    There are a couple of ways that you can go about transferring your cues to your running cuelist.

    Option 1 - The State Button

    When you want to transfer a stock cue to your running list, select your master of stock cues, press Load, press the State button on the main toolbar, type the cue number, and press enter. This will load the state of the cuelist in that cue into the programmer and you can then record this data to your other list.

    The problem with this is that you can still end up with some tracking oddities. The reason is that the State of a cuelist will only include fixtures that have been affected already by the cuelist.

    For example, using my 8 cue / 8 desk channel cuelist, if I load the state of cue 8 and record this as cue 1 to a different cuelist, I get all 8 desk channels at full. If I load the state of cue 2 and record this as cue 2 to my new cuelist, I only get 1 and 2 at full, I do not get 3 through 8 at 0. This is because my cuelist has no awareness of these desk channels when it's in cue 2. They haven't been used yet.

    You can also save yourself the Load / Record steps by just copying the cues. There is a State button on the main toolbar when you copy, I just wanted to illustrate this option using Load.

    Option 2 - Pig + Active

    Play back the cue on your stock cuelist that you want to transfer to a new list.
    Select all of your fixtures.
    Hold down Pig and press the Active key.
    This will grab all parameters of all of the fixtures and bring them into the programmer. It is a quick way of grabbing the entire output state for fixtures so that you can then record this into a new cue. Pig+Active will grab all values, even if they haven't been used, so when you record you will be recording a block cue that nothing can track through or change.

    Whichever option you choose, I would suggest unblocking your new cuelist once you have finished building it. There is a toolbar button in the cuelist window that you can use to unblock. This will look through your cuelist and where there are hard values in cues that don't actually change anything (channel 1 at the same level in cues 1 and 2, for example) it will remove the redundant values. This will get you back into a state where you can still take advantage of tracking, it will make your show file smaller, and it will be less work for the console to play back the cues.

    Hopefully this clears things up a bit. Please let me know how things go once you've had the chance to work with these ideas or ask any other questions you may have now.

  • Tom:

    Thank you very much -- I should have a chance to play with it some tomorrow night after work (The school meets in the church building), and i'll let you know if i hit any problems