Some of you like to learn more about what goes into running a Christmas show. This year (so far) we have a limited amount of songs up. This fact is mostly due to the design changes we implemented this year to incorporate “Smart Pixels”. As you watch our show, you’ll notice the columns and the two arches are extremely bright and change colors. These smart pixels allow me to change individual bulb color. With that ability comes a new controller and a whole new way to program the lights. It took me late into the fall to finally get all the parts from China and test everything. The design had to change a few times because my Arches were initially too big to support their own weight. I had to trim them down from 16′ to 10′ so they would stand up. I had to redo the programming I had already done.
Next the software option for programming smart pixels is limited. There are pro’s and con’s to whatever software you pick (including exorbant prices), and my pick crashed whenever I tried to add all my pixels. You’d think it’s not hard to add 320 lights to a software program, BUT since each light can display invidual spectrum of Red/Green/Blue on each bulb it’s really not 320 light. It’s 960 lights or “channels”. For reference, 2013’s show only had 36 Channels. This year it’s 996 Channels. A lot of the tricks to get the show to look right have to be imported and exported across multiple pieces of software. This was all a learning process this year. I should have started the new project in June to be ready, but I didn’t get started until late August.
Now, I have to make all the old songs conform to the new channel layout. I have so busy at work lately, my free time is sparse. I’m working every night to get several of the other songs back up as well as a completely new song for this year. With that check back weekly for new information.
I really hope you enjoy the show. Please tell your friends to come visit as well. Remember, we’re donating to “Toys for Tots” again this year, so we appreciate anything you feel you can give. Leave us a note in our mailbox and tell us what you like about the show.