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Light Show Pro Vs. LOR

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Everything is setup by controller and I don't program that way.

LSP offers virtual controllers (the ability to put channels from different physical controllers into "virtual controllers"). LSP also has "layers" which is much like the LOR "tracks", sans the timing marks.

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So how about the other parts of the software? Most of this has centered on the sequencing. The scheduler and show builder function pretty similar to LOR? Stability issues?

After watching the non RGB tutorial the software looks very interesting, but I would also like to know if there will be free upgrades to v2 before spending money on it. This is my first year, but I'm thinking that is what LOR did with S2 when it came out.

I posted a couple videos on me facebook, and, as you can see, my sequencing was very simplistic this year. I ran out of time because I got started too late sequencing. With the LSP software it looks like you could sequence much faster with some more powerful tools. I would also like to eventually go towards some of the DMX toys in the future, and the RGB control is very interestng looking.

http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/profile.php?id=1343375337

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So how about the other parts of the software? Most of this has centered on the sequencing. The scheduler and show builder function pretty similar to LOR? Stability issues?

The scheduler has some issues from time to time but when I ran LOR S2 last year, I had a quirk also. What it is this year really won't matter since it appears LSP is going to be completely re-written for 2011. Of course the current scheduler is quite a bit more able than S2 since it supports lots of interaction (iPhone, web, etc) inputs.

After watching the non RGB tutorial the software looks very interesting, but I would also like to know if there will be free upgrades to v2 before spending money on it. This is my first year, but I'm thinking that is what LOR did with S2 when it came out.

My guess (and that is all it is) is that LOR is going to have to come out with something that is a major improvement in 2011 to handle the larger displays. I suspect that they can't keep give free upgrades going forward for what should be major new functionality. The same applies to LSP. I would NOT purchase any software at this point since there could be some really interesting outcomes in 2011 when it comes to software. Now, given that you are just starting, I suspect that all these new features may not be of any use in a smaller display, these functions such as transitions don't do near as much for a 32 channels display as they do a 400 channel display.

With the LSP software it looks like you could sequence much faster with some more powerful tools. I would also like to eventually go towards some of the DMX toys in the future, and the RGB control is very interestng looking.

As someone with 2,300 RGB channels this year, I can say that there are some ways to speed up sequencing but a high quality display will always require hours and hours of very detailed sequencing, anything else will just be "middle of the road".

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For now it's just a waiting game. Most of us will be waiting until 2012 because these software developments will probably not appear until late fall 2011 which is too late. Once we see what they can do then we will be able to plan for the following year.

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Been holding off on this thread...

I have used LOR software now for over 5 years. I know many on here have used it more and many less. But 5 years is a pretty good experience to know the software well.

I purchased LSP INITIALLY to help fund them and see what they could do. I did not use it for this year's show-I used my LOR again.

BUT-

Now that I have put some time into looking at LSP as an Owner, I am SERIOUSLY impressed.

Someone has said you have to think differently about approaching design with LSP and I agree completely now after having put in several months seriously using it. Your LOR usage does not move right over into LSP without having to re-think the way it all is set up, is handled and sequenced. It is not BAD, just DIFFERENT. In fact, it makes a lot of sense after you learn it.

I TRULY believe that LSP has surpassed the LOR software in functionality at this time. That is not to say that an LOR upgrade won't even the playing field- but RIGHT now- LSP is clearly more advanced, more feature rich, and supports multiple protocols that LOR does not support. I had hoped that LSP would push the envelope and they have- even more than I anticipated.

That said, I have had NO PROBLEMS whatsoever with my LOR software and I believe it is solid as a rock. If you are thinking of getting into sequencing, you will not go wrong either way. In fact, if you are going to be an LOR only hardware user with less than 200 channels, AND MANY MANY MANY are and always will be- I believe you could do a coin toss and be just fine.

But as I now approach a season with multiple universes, multiple protocols, thousands of channels, and a total show re-design- I cannot even fathom it with LOR at its current level of functionality.

So I bought LSP in hopes that another company would continue pushing the envelope and they have. I hope it keeps LOR software from becoming stagnant as well. I think the more legitimate competition that is out there, the better it will be for all of us consumers.

Rusty

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I have been using Light-o-Rama for about 5 years as well. I have over 550 channels now and while it *is* tedious to sequence all of the RGB channels, I know it's rock solid and my show performance is something I do NOT have to worry about night to night.

I first bought LSP a year ago to give it a try. At that point it was so buggy that I didn't think it was worth the hassle and I returned it for a refund.

After all of the chatter about it's improvements, I bought it again last month to see what I could do with it.

By profession, I am a programmer, have been for over 30 years. So I do know a good deal about program development. That being said, here is my review of LSP compared to LOR S2.

Light Show Pro is a software package that is hampered by one very significant issue. The developer has gone for "feature creep" first, stability second. While it can do a ton of fancy, very useful things, it is NOT robust in the user interface. In development terms, this is called "skeletal design". More simply put, if you use the program EXACTLY as it was intended to be used, it works and works well at what it is supposed to do. It's error handling and fault tolerance though is in severe need of work. While the current version of LSP doesn't lockup and crash like the one from a year ago, it still gets lost in loops where one has to save your work, exit the program and restart it.

The most recent loop I ran into was trying to create a new musical sequence. I opened the .wav file and sat there on my 12gig, i7 based FAST PC, running Windows 7 Ult 64 bit, waiting for it to do the audio waveform analysis and to let me start adding controllers. It never finished this step, I had to save the sequence, shut it all down and restart it to get past this point. Now maybe the rest of you don't mind dealing with the quirks in LSP, but for commercial software I expect it to be robust, fault tolerant and able to deal with it's own error situations. That same attempt at creating a new sequence got it into a mode where none of the items on the 'Effects' tab would work. Instead, when the Effects tab was clicked I would get a huge red "X" over it's window, no Effects would be shown and some useless index error message that wouldn't mean a thing to most users. I had controllers added to the sequence, but I was unable to create an on, ramp or ANY effect. The software was unuseable at that point and didn't have even decent error messages to give a clue as to how to get out of that issue. That alone is enough of a problem to keep me from wanting to go any further with it.

Attempts at importing my 500+ channel LOR S2 sequences into LSP worked much better with this December's version than the prevoius year. (Last year the large imports just plain failed) This year it *did* import but there were a considerable number of annoying issues:

#1 Controllers did not import in the channel order that they were in on the original LOR S2. I couldn't see any rhyme or reason for the order they were converted in either. For example, Bellagio poles #1 thru #5 are controller 1E, 1F, 20, 21 and 22 in my LOR setup. After importing into LSP two of them were towards the beginning of the controller list, the other three were randomly tossed amongst other controllers.

#2 LOR S2 "RGB" controllers were not converted as RGB. Instead they were broken back out into three seperate controllers for R, G and B. Sorry, but I have far too much work in those sequences to redo them and I could not find a way to convert three 16 channel controllers back into one FireFli controller.

#3 LOR S2 controller addresses were tossed for controllers with address ranges above A0. My seven Firefli controllers start at "A0" and go up from there. All addresses on the Firefly controllers were set to E0, the LOR default address for it's iDMX controller. Not nice.

#4 Multiple networks were tossed. I run my Fireflis on a seperate network from the rest of the controllers. All controllers were chopped back into one network. Annoying, easily changed back but still annoying when you're wanting to import dozens of sequences.

While I can understand the reason, it is somewhat irritating that there is no attempt at all to convert the Animation preview settings. It is fairly straight forward to interpret the LOR S2 animation display and convert it to LSP's format but it is just thrown out.

So from my viewpoint and IMHO, LSP is a very powerful piece of code, but is still VERY lacking in error handling and it's import abilities. Until those two quite significant issues are resolved, I will just keep looking at it and hoping that it's fixed into a product I can confidently move into to support my setup. I'm not looking for a refund this year, as I can see he's made significant advancements in improving his product. I will continue as a paid customer in hope that he'll get it over the hill into the level of reliability that I need.

Meanwhile, I will keep using the "old fashioned" but rock solid reliable approach of LOR S2.

Please bear in mind this is one person's attempt at an honest viewpoint of LSP. I am not affiliated with Light-o-rama in any way. I'm just a user with no ulterior motive other than putting on a great light display.

Edited by Gary Martin

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Gary -

That is also an excellent and I believe accurate comparison. I can see, with a primarly LOR protocol based display that LOR S2 works very well in your case. My experience also is that S2 is rock solid. Where this becomes and issue is when you move into areas where you do need that "feature creep" - support of nearly every lighting protocol out there, the ability to automate the sequencing of huge channel counts (granted, not an issue for most), the ability to handle objects like matrix's, a much advanced visualizer (large channel counts, floods, strobes, etc), remote control, etc and LOR doesn't offer those features - as was the case with my display this year.

It sure seems that LSP has a shorter road to travel in terms of getting to where LOR will need to be in the coming year(s) and that fixing UI and error handling should be less of an issue for them than the ground-up re-write that S2 is rumored to be going through.

I think after all these discussions, I can see how it is hard for someone to pick a software solution - and we are only talking about one of up to 6 or more sequencing applications that will be avaible in 2011. It seems at this time, it would be wise to look at the design of ones display, it's technical needs and then select the package that works to best meet those technical and sequencing needs for that display.

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Gary -

That is also an excellent and I believe accurate comparison. I can see, with a primarly LOR protocol based display that LOR S2 works very well in your case. My experience also is that S2 is rock solid. Where this becomes and issue is when you move into areas where you do need that "feature creep" - support of nearly every lighting protocol out there, the ability to automate the sequencing of huge channel counts (granted, not an issue for most), the ability to handle objects like matrix's, a much advanced visualizer (large channel counts, floods, strobes, etc), remote control, etc and LOR doesn't offer those features - as was the case with my display this year.

It sure seems that LSP has a shorter road to travel in terms of getting to where LOR will need to be in the coming year(s) and that fixing UI and error handling should be less of an issue for them than the ground-up re-write that S2 is rumored to be going through.

I think after all these discussions, I can see how it is hard for someone to pick a software solution - and we are only talking about one of up to 6 or more sequencing applications that will be avaible in 2011. It seems at this time, it would be wise to look at the design of ones display, it's technical needs and then select the package that works to best meet those technical and sequencing needs for that display.

Make no mistake, I would dearly LOVE to use the features in LSP in my existing sequences. The road to get there right now just requires too much work to convert over. ;( I'm even willing to learn to live with the quirks that currently exist in LSP if the import would just work a bit better.

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Well guys- like I said, LOR is rock solid. Though I DID have several first-time problems with the control panel running the show this year that I have not had in the past. But I got beyond that this year after only a little grief.

I also own software companies and have written code since I was in Jr high. My handwritten reciept for my first Apple computer is still in my collection. (Along with an Altair, timex sinclair, CoCo, C64, Tandy (trs80 mod 1), Apples 1-3, Mac Original, and IBM 5100- I also bought a PET for my collection but I never used it- BTW- my wife hates this "junk" as she calls it) So I have had a little experience with this type of stuff but ADMITTEDLY have always bought the latest and greatest. BUT THAT DOESN'T mean I am an early adopter. In fact, I would usually buy the stuff and often never use it. Maybe it was never stable enough or feature rich enough. Or maybe it was cool looking but ill-conceived. While I will buy something new to check it out and see how I might use it, I am not one to use something new just because it is new. It has to work well and be stable.

I have not had the LSP error problems that have been reported by others but if they still exist, then that is a serious problem. Perhaps it is a configuration problem that has not been resolved or perhaps it is an E/O. But error trapping has been fine for me on the few occasions I needed it. Mostly that was in the beginning learning the software when I would do something totally off the wall and it was also on the first releases. Note that I got my first copy when they announced the "sign up and get a great deal".... But even though I have had it that long I haven't used LSP for my shows. It is only NOW I am deciding to use it for my shows.

PLEASE NOTE THAT IT WOULD BE A MISTAKE for anyone to consider my post a bash on the LOR software that I have used, LOVED, and now know inside and out. It is fine. Better than fine really- it is awesome. But it is also ready for a REAL upgrade with multi-thousand channel shows becoming more common. I KNOW LOR will do those multi-thousand channel shows- it is just CUMBERSOME sequencing them with LOR.

With regards to importing sequences into LSP from LOR, I personally would not CONSIDER importing my LOR stuff into LSP as they are two different worlds. I know I have to re-sequence but I am prepared to do that. Like I said, I AM REDESIGNING my entire show. I am ready to do that. So the import thing to me is like trying to import Microstation files into Autocad- yeah it does it.... but I lose lots of entity and attribute data and such. Though Autocad and Microstation are both for CAD- They are different. Though LOR and LSP are both for light show sequencing- They are different. Both will give you a great result, they just get to the result differently and organize and configure the topologies/protocols differently. As I said before, LSP handles MANY more protocols than LOR does. For many, that will be a useless feature- but for others, it will be a God-send.

So again, in summary, I simply say that they need to both exist and push each other for innovation. I believe in using something that is VERY stable for my show. I have redundant FM transmitters, USB dongles, xtra controllers, spare arches- I am a freak about reliability and having contingencies covered- that is why I think I have liked the reliable LOR hardware and software so much in the past.It HAS TRULY BEEN bullet-proof. (and don't even get me started on their terrific customer service- it is A+)

All that said, I think LSP is reliable now and I am going to try it this COMING year. I have given LSP some time now since it was released and think it is as least as stable as MY first version of LOR from 2005 time-frame. As conservative as I am about such things, I believe my decision is well thought out. I have been wrong before and hope I am not now! But if I am, YOU WILL HEAR ABOUT IT!

IDEA: Considering how cheap they both are, why not buy both so they continue driving each other for innovation? It can only help the industry and all of us as users. I think I only paid $79 for LSP. I spent more than that at dinner tonight. Keep them both updated and in business for our own selfish reasons!

RESPECTFULLY SUBMITTED-

RW

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As a LOR controller user with 32 channels and no RGB stuff to speak of, I've been using LOR S2 for about 3 years now. I find it time consuming but adequate for my needs at this point. I'm interested in trying LSP because I understand layers etc as I do a LOT of graphic design in illustrator, photoshop, flash. I'm wondering if it would be a waste of my time though since I do not do any RGB items right now. Each one of my items is a single color, including my 8 mini trees. What are your thoughts about this?

Thanks.

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Personally, there is no comparison to LOR. The ease, user freindliness, warranty, service and available support of LOR is the absolute best. I have tried some of the trial software out there and it just doesn't compare IMO.

Light Show Pro and all the others seem to always be playing catch up. Think of it this way, if you are using software that boasts about its ability to import its COMPETITIONS work, you are better off with the competition.

Just my 2 cents.

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Personally, there is no comparison to LOR. The ease, user freindliness, warranty, service and available support of LOR is the absolute best. I have tried some of the trial software out there and it just doesn't compare IMO.

Light Show Pro and all the others seem to always be playing catch up. Think of it this way, if you are using software that boasts about its ability to import its COMPETITIONS work, you are better off with the competition.

Just my 2 cents.

I'm sure that coming from LOR to LSP it would not seem as user friendly since it is so different, but I started this year with LSP as my first program and felt like I about had it mastered after a few hours. As far as warranty, service, and support, David has done an awesome job responding to my emails and even offered to do a LogMeIn session on an issue I had.

I think most will agree that not only is LSP not catching up, they are leading the industry. The ability to program via layers and transitions is the only way to program RGB in my opinion. LSP's boast is that it can import and export multiple formats as well as work with just about every controller on the market. I feel like the whole philosophy of LSP is about making the software work for you with what you have. I have a friend that uses LOR and a friend that uses Vixen and they both were impressed when I showed them LSP and both stated how much faster and easier I could do complex sequences.

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Personally, there is no comparison to LOR. The ease, user freindliness, warranty, service and available support of LOR is the absolute best. I have tried some of the trial software out there and it just doesn't compare IMO.

Light Show Pro and all the others seem to always be playing catch up. Think of it this way, if you are using software that boasts about its ability to import its COMPETITIONS work, you are better off with the competition.

Just my 2 cents.

My 2 cents is that once you past 256 channels, you may find that applications like LOR S2/S3 may limit your choices.

Care to elaborate on how LSP is playing catch up?

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Once you get past 256 channels you have ventured into the realm of insanity. You are beyond help and re-hab is futile. You are on your own. ;)

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Once you get past 256 channels you have ventured into the realm of insanity. You are beyond help and re-hab is futile. You are on your own. ;)

You can blow past 256 channels with ONE 90 node RGB or CCR strand! :unsure:

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