What is the ENTTEC Pixel Octo, and Why Do I Care? – Learn Stage Lighting .com

What is the ENTTEC Pixel Octo, and Why Do I Care?

Kari
By Kari / a few months ago

The ENTTEC Pixel Octo is a new product that drives pixels. This unit will drive any type of LED pixel and it controls up to 1,360 pixels across it’s two outputs. In this video we’ll review what makes this unit so interesting.

What Makes it Interesting?

ENTTEC had made an announcement at the LDI Conference last year about coming out with the Pixel Octo. What makes this unit stand out to me is the cost, ease of use, and the overall function.

Cost

For a professional grade pixel driver that is able to manage 680 pixels per (2) outputs the price of the unit is very affordable compared to other pixel drivers on the market.

The price online you can find this unit is $400 USD to drive over 1300 pixels. In my opinion, this is a really great cost for a professional grade unit and for what it can do.

Functionality

What I really like about ENTTEC is that they are always looking for new ways to do things. With the Pixel Octo instead of having to be powered separately or through another power source this unit is able to take power out of its first output.

When setting up and designing your display you won’t have to factor in trying to supply power to the pixel driver.

Another great feature about this unit is that this it does include a small network switch. There’s an Ethernet in and through, allowing you to daisy chain up to 15 of these units.

Going Deeper with the ENTTEC Pixel Octo

Since we dived into what ENTTEC’s Pixel Octo does now we will go in deeper into what you can do with it and how to to control it.

How Do You Control It?

To get started you’ll first want to download and launch ENTTEC’s NMU program. Once you’ve done this be sure to connect any ENTTEC devices that you want dicovered.

In the launch screen click “Discovery” and all of the devices connected will appear. Select the “Pixel Octo” and you will see in the box below the IP web Address come up in the description. Click the web address and this will open a web browser window.

Note: By default it does use DHCP but it does have a back up IP Address as well.

Pixel Octo Configuration

Once the browser window is opened you will be directed to the Pixel Octo Configuration page. On the home page you will see all of the information available for Pixel Octo.

Located on the top of the page you will see the menu to adjust the settings, network stats, help section, and to check for updates.

To get started, click “Settings”. On this page, you can name the unit, set up the IP Address, and set the output. One of the crucial settings you want to look at is the Pixel order and the Outputs.

When you’re done with the settings just click “Save Settings”.

Direct Mode

To use the direct mode just click “Direct” in the menu and then select “Direct Mode”. On this page you can select and change the DMX input to sCAN, Art-Net, ESP, or KiNET.

On this page you will also have your pixel mapping options that you can go through and set up.

Standalone Mode

To use the Standalone mode you can just click “Standalone” on the top menu and then click “Use Standalone Mode”. To get started you will be able to select which presets you want to use for Output 1 and Output 2. Just select the presets and click “Save Settings”.

Below the outputs you will see where you can build and name the presets. To get started with building a preset you’ll drop down the effects menu, select a preset, name the preset, and click “Create”.

When you begin to build a preset you will be able to use the color wheel to select your colors. Besides the wheels you have your background sliders and the foreground sliders. With the foreground sliders you can set the wave, frequency, and the duration.

Below the color wheels you can set the master intensity, wave function, direction, and offset. When you’re done building the preset click “Save Settings” located at the bottom of the screen.

What Consoles Does This Work With?

One of the questions I get asked about is what consoles does ENTTEC’S Pixel Octo work with? What’s great about this unit is that it does work with many different types of consoles.

Generally, you are going to control the unit over Art-Net or sCAN. When working with that type of signal you will usually be able to work with any type of console.

Something to keep in mind is that the Pixel Octo takes 8 outputs of DMX Universes.

How is it Different?

One of the things that makes the Pixel Octo special is the wiring. You may notice that the Octo to doesn’t output power to your lights. You can bring in power on the side of the unit but you don’t have to. You can actually backpower from the start of your LEDs.

With other units you would have to figure out to power the pixel driver and your LEDs but keep everything close so you didn’t lose any voltage. Generally, you want to keep the pixel driver 30 – 50 feet from your lights.

As I mentioned earlier I really like how well thought out the Pixel Octo was when created. If you’re in the market for a pixel driver you definitely want to consider this unit.


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  • […] Depending on your project and what equipment you’re working with you may want to consider using fewer pixels if your driver doesn’t have the capability to handle as many channels. But if you’re looking for a pixel driver that can handle many DMX channels then I recommend looking at ENTTEC’s Pixel Octo. […]


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