Besides our general tour of Prolight + Sound, watching the numerous lightshows of many manufacturers and spontaneously meeting some members here from the community, we also had several concrete items on our agenda. One of these itmes was RDM. As is well known, RDM is not a manufacturer, but the extension of the DMX protocol for remote device management. The fact that we also ran across the trade show with this in mind in particular is clearly due to this: RDM has not been an exclusive professional feature for a few years now, something you only find in the high-priced devices of the major manufacturers. Even in the mid-range devices, this feature is now on board. Also, for the associated DMX interfaces applies that here gradually more devices with a corresponding RDM function are available on the market.
Therefore, also from us internally the wish exists for a long time to implement the RDM protocol completely in DMXControl 3. But this turned out to be quite challenging, because as so often theory and practice are sometimes much further apart than one would like. Especially when validating real data, our development team stumbled again and again over problems where it was not clear: Is it a bug in the software? Is something missing in the implementation of the protocol after all? Is the desired information stuck somewhere in the pipe? Is there still something that the interface needs from me (i.e. DMXControl 3) that the data is read out correctly? Is the problem buried in the interface? Or is it finally the device, which would like to be addressed despite official RDM support nevertheless somewhat differently? Or is RDM simply not implemented correctly in the device? As you can see, the implementation is influenced by numerous variables, which makes troubleshooting a Sisyphean task.
To eliminate some of these incalculable variables for further development, we visited Prolight + Sound with the goal of approaching various manufacturers with appropriate professional RDM devices in their product portfolios about this issue. From the list of exhibitors, one of the companies we put on our visit list in advance was the Belgian company Luminex. In a very detailed conversation, we were not only introduced to their overall portfolio, how especially the topic of network administration is taken to the next level. Likewise, Luminex also builds powerful Art-Net nodes, which not only simply generate DMX values and receive RDM data. Each node offers internal functions for further manipulation of DMX values and provides different backup solutions depending on the size. All of this has resulted in Luminex equipment being used regularly on large productions.
Our approach is to further advance the topic of RDM in DMXControl 3 with the support of Luminex. At this point, the German distributor for Luminex, the company Trendco, came into play. Here they had an open ear for our question and request. So, we can proudly report that last week a small package with a Luminex Luminode 1 on loan arrived at our first chairman. Therefore, at this point a big thank you to Trendco and to Luminex that we can now continue the implementation of RDM in DMXControl 3 with this support. As soon as there are further developments worth mentioning here, we will report accordingly.
Note in own thing: The rough summary and presentation of the portfolio is a thank you for the provided Art-Net-Node and therefore also provided with links to the mentioned companies and products.