Western Michigan University

THEA 332: Lighting and Sound Design

Lighting Control and Distribution

I.    Lighting Cables

A.     Cable

1.      NEC Approved types for Stage Cable (S, SO, ST, and STO)
2.      Wire Gauge and Labeling
3.      Zip Cord

B.      Connectors

1.      Plug (Male)/Receptacle (Female)
2.      Common Connector Types

a.      Stage Plug (Archaic)
b.      Edison or Parallel Blade
c.      Pin Connector or Stage Pin
d.      Twist Lock

3.      High Amperage Connectors

C.      Jumpers and Two-fers


II.     Circuiting

A.      Permanent Wiring
B.      Spidering
C.      Connecting Strips and Patch Panels

1.      Circuit Breakouts

a.      Raceway
b.      Drop Box
c.      Floor Pocket
d.      Wall Pocket

2.      Patch Panels

a.      Phone Operators Patch
b.      Matrix Patch
c.      Connector Patch

D.      Dimmer Per Circuit


III.      Dimmers

A.      Archaic Dimmers

1.      Saltwater Dimmer
2.      Saturable-Core and Magnetic-Amplifier Dimmers
3.      Thyratron-Tube Dimmer
4.      Resistance Dimmer (Ghost Loading)

B.      Autotransformer Dimmers (Motorized)
C.      Silicon-Controlled Rectifier Dimmers (SCR)

1.      The Gating Principle
2.      Control Voltage (How Control Consoles talk to Dimmers)
3.      Communication Protocals (AMX, DMX, Ethernet)


IV.      Control Consoles

A.      Group Master Consoles (Faders, Submasters, Grandmaster)
B.      Preset Boards (Crossfader, Timed Crossfader, Bump Buttons, Scenes)
C.      Combination Board (Manual Assignment, Programmable Submasters, Soft Patch, Submaster Mode)
D.      Computerized Light Boards

1.      Computer-Assisted Memory
2.      Memory Backup
3.      Battery Backup
4.      Printer Output
5.      Multiple Faders
6.      Separately controllable Crossfaders
7.      Auto-follow and Delay
8.      Groups
9.      Submasters
10.     Proportional Patch
11.     Dimmer Profiles
12.     Effects
13.     Manual Override
14.     Remote Control

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Matthew A. Knewtson, Professor of Theatre
Western Michigan University
Comments to:  matt.knewtson@wmich.edu
Revised :  August 2009