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How Many Lights For A Mega Tree


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This year I am adding my first Mega Tree. Here are the stats:

 

20' Tall 

10' Diameter Base 

12 Channels

All Green (for 2013)

 

Currently I am thinking about running six strands per channel, for a total of 72 strands, each with 70ct lights. 

 

When I first calculated it, it seemed like the appropriate number, but as I look at what others have done, it seems like this is more than is necessary. 

 

I know that the general rule is: Q "are there too many lights?" A - "Never!"

 

But budget is an issue this year.

 

Please let me know your thoughts. Thanks! 

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I appreciate the replies. I have no doubt that with 16 channels and multiple colors they can look good. I was asking more about the density of lights per channel. I assume with 6 strands of lights per channel the tree will look full. But do I need that many?

 

urthegman - with only 16 strands per color, does your tree look full?

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It is what you want that matters, my first year with a megatree I had 16 channels and used 16 green strings with 100ct lights - it was 10 feet high.

 

In the following years I expanded it to now there are 4 strings of color per channel, but since I now have 16 stands of 4 colors in each slice, I grouped them into 4 per - so I have 6,400 lights in a 4 string per channel / 16 channel controller.

 

Do what looks and feels right to you, and that you can afford, each year you can add more.

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You have to start someplace.  If the budget dictates that you can't have as many lights as you want, use as many lights as you can afford.  There is always next year.  Plus, you will have a better idea of how many lights YOU will think looks good.

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I use 32 strings on 8 total channels per color.  This gives me 4 strings per channel, 2 on opposite sides so I have 180 degree control.  72 strands sounds like entirely too many IMO.  I have 96 total over 3 colors and it ends up being a lot of weight.

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  • 4 weeks later...

2 years ago when I actually had a mega tree I believe I did 45 strands total 15 red, 15 white and 15 blue, 15 channels total, each color have 5 channels a piece with 3 strands per channel, seemed to be ok for me, tree was about 15 feet tall, will be finally trying to repeat it again this year if time allows.

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I have done both the over top method giving 180 degrees of control, and the pie section up and back down method.  I like both.  I use one controller for the mega: Channels 1 - 7 red, 8 - 14 green, 15 star, 16 strobes/cascades.  I only use a strand and a half of minis = 150 lights per channel for a total of 2100 lights; fills it up very well.  This year I am thinking of doubling the count for each channel, 300 per color and 4200 total.  Just remember to account for amps per channel and total wattage used on your controller as to not overload it.  Not sure if you are running LED or Incandescent.  Hope that helps.

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I have to agree I have 16 channels for 16 100 count sets of lights and I have to get a heavier gauge wire to hold the tree back because when the snow came down and covered the tree in the middle of the night one of the guide wires broke and the tree almost tipped over. But I only do half the tree with lights to save money and lights. 

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  • 4 months later...

I think on a tree that size 8 channels works just fine per color. I can spin my tree with the best of

them. Red, greens and whites, I have my controllers (2) mounted to the bottom of the tree,

8 channels red

8 channels green

8 channels clear

3 channels for the star

1 channel for the strobes

1 channel for the blue, The Blue is an outline for the tree With Led blue rope light

3 to 4 Strands per channel

Everything plugs in at the base. of tree. The extra channels very important in case of a channel fails,

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Mine is about 21' with 2' star and 10' base.  It has 108 strings of minis. 36 red 36 clear and 36 green.  36 channels for lights, 6 channel start and 1 channel for strobes.  If I was to do the same with LED's I would do the same.  I'm just having a hard time with the budget thing. 

 

I think I could get just as much wow with a 16' tree using 100cnt LED's up and down and save on the budget.

 

Sometimes bigger isn't always better but my wife likes having the tall tree even though I think it's a PITA to put together.

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