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In these tutorials we assume that you already connected LEDs with LED Controller. If you didn’t do that already, please, follow these tutorials.

2. What are the control options of Pixel Controllers?

With LED Strip Studio pixel controllers, you have several control options. You can use standards such as DMX 512, Art-Net, Stand-alone or Ethernet (software) mode. Also, you can count on 2 hardware buttons and DIP switch on the front panel of the LED controller to switch between animations on SD-Card in case you use them in stand-alone mode.

Good to Know

A great feature is our test mode, which allows you to play Red, Green, Blue, White dimming and Snake effect on all 4096 LEDs. It’s perfect to test if all your LED pixels are working correctly. You can run test with hardware buttons on your LED controller or with your web browser through Web configuration tool.

Hardware Buttons – Restart

Apart from the function to switch between the effects stored on SD -card, two hardware buttons can also:

 

Top button – hold for 5s during the start and it will restart the device back into factory settings

 

Top button /Autoplay Mode only – hold for 5s and default animation plays

 

Down button/Autoplay Mode only – hold for 5s and the animation will stop playing

Status LEDs

LSS controllers have several status LEDs. There are 4 on the front panel and 4 status LEDs on the back panel.

Front panel status LEDs

 

Software connected – in case LSS software is connected  ( ready to send data to LED controller)

 

DMX signal detectedfast flashes in case DMX signal is detected.

Art-Net signal detectedslow flashing in case Art-Net signal is detected.

 

Power ondiode turns on if power is connected.

 

DMX OUT true – diode turns on if DMX in is connect directly with DMX out

Back panel status LEDs

 

Frame sending – in case data is being sent to SPI out, this diode flashes.

In addition to above, status LEDs can also indicate states in the table bellow. 5s after you either turn on or restart the device, the LEDs indicate which device is ready to be used. This can help in case you have multiple devices connected to one of our controllers and you want to check which one is ready.

 

SPI OUT 1 SPI OUT 2 SPI OUT 3 SPI OUT 4
LEC 3 / Powered on off off off
SPI Matrix on on off off
Upgraded SPI Matrix off off on off

2.1. Control priority

All LED Strip Studio pixel controllers follow this control options priority, where test mode has the highest priority and auto play has the lowest one. In case of Test mode triggered through Web Configuration, you have to cancel it by clicking Stop Test button. Likewise, you have to first cancel mode you are currently in to enter a different mode (unplug cable in ethernet mode; interrupt signal Art-Net of DMX signal data flow, etc.)

An Example of Priority

Imagine this: You have LED Ethernet Controller 3 connected with LSS software via ethernet cable. But you are not sure if you selected the right type of LEDs on SPI output. So, you can simply open web configuration. Choose the output that you are using and try to run test mode. In case you will see correct colors on LEDs, you know what kind of LED type and Color order you need to set in LSS software. Don’t forget to click on Stop Test button after you finish testing. Changes made in web configuration has no impact on LSS software.

Our software and hardware developers are adding new features on a daily basis, so it’s possible that some control options are not mentioned here. Check for latest version of the firmware. In case you can’t find something, please, let us know over the contact form.

2.2. Test mode

Test mode is great to quickly test if all connected LED pixels are working properly. Since you can use Red, Green, Blue or White dimming test patterns, you can also check the RGB color order of all your LED pixels.

Test mode is a very simple, but useful feature, which allows you to scroll through all test patterns

 

  • red, green, blue and white dimming
  • white snake animation – good for signal direction check
  • black frame (only available through Web Configuration test tool)

2.2.1. How to run Test mode?

You have two options to run the test mode – using hardware buttons and through your web browser.

Test mode: use BUTTONS

Out of the all control options, this type of test has the lowest priority since it is played directly from the device itself. It serves for a basic check. Hardware test mode of LED Ethernet Controller 3, SPI Matrix and LED Ethernet Controller Powered in few steps:

 

  • Turn on your controller without SD-Card in SD-Card slot
  • Controller can not be connected to your PC or receiving any data signal (Art-Net or DMX)
  • Press up & down buttons to scroll through basic colors and patterns
Test mode: use WEB BROWSER
  1. Turn on your controller. Make sure that it is connected to the same network as your computer or mobile device. Your computer’s IP address must be set to 192.168.1.X, where X is arbitrary, has value from 0-255, but at the same time it is different(!) from your controllers’ IP address (or any other device on the network for that matter)
  2. Open your preferred web browser
  3. Type in IP address:192.168.1.X, where X is the current IP of your controller. The default value is 147 (in case you have DIP switch set on value 0, in other case use value from your DIP switch).
  4. Click on All Settings tab and find Testing section. Default login and password is “admin“.
  1. Click on testing buttons. You can see changes on LEDs immediately.
  2. Stop test mode after you are finished. It’s important to click on the Stop Test button, because test mode has the highest priority, even higher than Ethernet or Art-Net.

Good to Know

It’s a good practice to run Test mode in case you are not sure what is IC type or LED type of your LED strips/pixels. While some test pattern are running, you can easily switch between different LED/IC types and find the right one.

2.3. Auto-play mode

Auto-play mode is available for all LSS controllers. Auto-play means that the device will play stored animations from SD-card automatically after startup (or after pressing buttons), so you have several control options. You can do the configuration over

 

LED Strip Studio software for SPI LED Controller
• Or over your web browser for LED Ethernet Controller 3 / Powered or SPI Matrix.

2.3.1 Auto-play mode: PRIORITY

Auto-play can achieve several different states with priority in this order:

 

  1. Play a playlist of scenes/animations from SD-Card automatically after you turn on your controller – Playlist
  2. Play scene/animation from SD-Card with the same name as a value on DIP switch automatically after you turn on your controller – DIP switch
  3. Play scene/animation defined over the web browser from SD-Card automatically after you turn on your controller – Default scene
  4. Play and switch between scenes/animations thru (please notice that this action turns off the playlist and DIP switch. You have to turn off/on the device again to get back):
    • Hardware buttons – use up and down buttons to switch between animations – Buttons
    • HTTP link – you can use HTTP link to play animation from SD-Card. Example of a link is http://IP_ADDRESS_OF_CONTROLLER/SetAutoplay.html?file=NUMBER_OF_SCENE. Example: http://192.168.1.25/SetAutoplay.html?file=5 will play file number 5 on controller with IP set to 192.168.1.25 – HTTP Link Trigger
    • Web Configuration – you can change the current value of an animation

 

In case you would like to use auto-play mode, you have to do several steps. First, you have to be familiar with LED Strip Studio software, which you will need to create LED scenes/animations. You can find video tutorials on our web.

2.3.2. Auto-play mode: Export scenes/animations

Each and every option in Auto-play modes require a scene or animation files store on SD-Card. Yu need to export scenes in the following format – EFFXXX.LN2. XXX is the number of your scene (for example EFF001.LN2, EFF125.LN2).

We assume that you are familiar with the process of creating scenes in the LSS software.

 

    1. Prepare a SD-Card. Don’t know how to do it?
    2. In the main menu of LSS software go to Tools -> Export SD LSS 3. You have 3 options:
      1. Export single Scene,
      2. Export Bank tool, which exports every scene from a chosen bank,
      3. Export a chosen Show –file name of the exported show will be also EFFXXX.LN2, where XXX can be set on value from 1 to 255.
  1. Choose one of the export options.
  2. Choose Ethernet window will appear. Choose the current IP of a controller for which you like to export scenes. It is important to do mapping and binding LED strips to outputs of the LED controller before. Learn more about LED mapping.
  1. Select location to save your scenes (SD-Card).
  2. Insert SD-Card to the LED controller. In case you are using TM1809 800kHz LEDs, you can use buttons to switch between scenes.
  3. If not, please follow these steps, which help you do the right SPI outputs setup:
    1. Open web configuration of the LED controller.
    1. In the main menu choose Main settings tab– > go to the Outputs section, where you can easily choose the right type of LED and color order. Save your changes.
    2. We recommend to run a test before you will try SD-Card mode (don’t forget to hit Stop Test button).

2.3.3. Auto-play mode: PLAYLIST

With our controllers, you are able to play several scenes/animations in a row. We are calling this feature Playlist. You can configure Playlist in Web configuration.

 

Follow these steps to set playlist in stand-alone mode:

  1. Export and store scenes/animations on SD-Card.
  2. In the main menu of WEB configuration choose Autoplay settings -> Playlist. Don’t know how to get inside web configuration?
  3. You can assign 16 different scenes to a playlist, where each scene/animation can be repeated 0-65535 times.
  4. Select Repeat ON so that playlist automatically starts with the first scene of playlist after the last scene finishes (the default value is ON)
  1. Save Playlist.
  2. Turn off and then turn on an LED controller to start playing the playlist.
Loop indefinitely

There is one specific condition – indefinite loop. For example, you have some start animation, and then you want to repeat only one scene until you turn off your LED controller. It’s great to define “boot” or startup sequence for the LED installation.

 

For example, your first animation will be fade-in scene and then company or client logo. A scene with a logo will play indefinitely until you turn off  your LED controller.

 

Indefinite loop can be set for any of 16 scenes in playlist, but only the first scene with an indefinite loop will be played on your LEDs.

2.3.4. Auto-play mode: DIP SWITCH

One of the easiest options how to set default animation is through DIP switch, which is located on the front panel of the LED controller.

  1. Export and store scenes/animations on SD-Card.
  2. Move with pins on DIP switch to change a default value.
  3. Turn off & on your LED controller. Default animation will play automatically.

An Example

I’d like to play animation EFF002.LN2 immediately after I turn on my LED controller. For that, I can use DIP switch, where I move pins that represent value 2. Turn on the LED controller and scene will play automatically. The default speed of the animation is set on value 128 and repeat is on.

Value on a DIP switch also defines the current IP address and DMX address of the pixel controller. In another words, your IP address for web configuration will be 192.168.1.DIP_Switch_value, likewise the DMX address of your device.

2.3.5. Auto-play mode: DEFAULT SCENE

To play specific scene from SD-card after turning on your LED Controller, you can set Default file/scene this over web configuration.

 

Follow these steps to play specific scenes/show from an SD-Card:

  1. Export and store scenes/animations on SD-Card.
  2. In the Main menu tab of web configuration, choose Autoplay settings -> Autoplay section. Don’t know how to get inside web configuration?
  3. Change Default file to a value of the scene you would like to play after turning on the LED controller. For example, we’d like to play scene EFF005.LN2. Fill in 5 as a default file value. In case you’d like to change the speed of animation, change the value Speed (default value is 128, which will play the animation at default speed as rendered in LED Strip Studio software). In case you are not sure which scene is which on your SD-Card, you can switch scenes with a button Preview anim and button Next anim in web configuration Autoplay -> Autoplay section.
  4. Save settings.
  5. Turn off and then turn on your LED controller. Default animation should start playing immediately.

2.3.6. Auto-play mode: BUTTONS

LED Ethernet Controller 3 / Powered, SPI Matrix and even SPI LED Controller have hardware buttons on the front panel. These buttons allows you to switch between scenes stored on the SD-Card in order from 0 to 255 or from 255 to 0 and adds to control options you have.

Good to Know

Default scene has number 0 and contains a black scene. If you like to set a default scene with a different position number or even run play-list after turning on your LED controller, then follow Auto-play: Default scene, Auto-play: DIP SWITCH or Auto-play: PLAYLIST.

File format of exported scenes

In case you’d like to use buttons as trigger for your animations, you need to export scenes in the following format – EFFXXX.LN2. XXX is the number of your scene (for example EFF001.LN2, EFF125.LN2).

We assume that you already created some scenes in the LSS software.

 

    1. Export scenes/animations on SD-Card.
    2. Insert SD-Card into SD-Card slot of LED controller. SD-Card slot is on the front panel of the LED controller.
    3. Push buttons to switch scenes/animations.

2.4. DMX mode

DMX mode is automatically activated when there is DMX signal source connected to DMX IN and there’s no LED Strip Studio software or Art-Net signal source connected. It can be considered one of the most used control options since DMX is still a very popular protocol despite it’s age. DMX address can be set in web configuration or by using DIP switch on the device.

Indicator of the DMX signal is flashing yellow/orange status LED on the front panel of the pixel controller. Our controllers work in DMX THRU mode constantly, which means that DMX IN and DMX OUT are directly connected.

In case you use controllers over LED Strip Studio software, DMX Out is used as a DMX output for software – it’s not in thru mode. You can see that the white LED indicating DMX thru on the front panel is OFF. If you want to use DMX OUT connector, you need to generate DMX in LSS software -> mapping -> Analog section.

Good to know

Buttons on the front panel are inactive while the DMX mode is active.

With DMX mode, you have two control options:

 

  • Pixel mode – allows you to control 170 RGB pixels (512/3) or 128 RGBW pixels (512/4).
  • SD-Card mode: DMX trigger – allows you to trigger animations/scenes stored on SD-Card with DMX signal

2.4.1. Pixel DMX mode

DMX pixel mode is a feature that allows you to display DMX values on LEDs. Pixel mode takes DMX values and uses 3 (RGB) or 4 (RGBW) DMX channels for every LED pixel. You can configure Pixel mode in Web Configuration. In addition, one “DMX” pixels can control more than one physical digital LED. Using LEDs per pixel option, you can define, how many physical LEDs are controlled using 3 input DMX RGB channels.

How to set DMX pixel mode step by step:

 

  1. First, connect your computer and LED controller with Ethernet cable. Then set network on your computer so that you can open web configuration.
  2. Connect DMX over 3 pin XLR connector. Use DMX IN connector. If an LED controller is receiving DMX signal, a yellow status LED is flashing.
  3. Open web configuration and click on DMX sett tab in the Main menu of web configuration.
  4. Select Pixels and save the settings. DMX pixel mode section will appear.
  1. Set how many LEDs will represent one pixel. Default value is 1 LED = 1 Pixel. For example, you can simply set 5 LEDs = 1 Pixel, if you change the value of  “LEDs per Pixel” to 5.

2.4.2. DMX trigger – SD-Card

You can use DMX to trigger scenes (LED animations) from SD-Card. In case you like to use Art-Net as trigger, follow these instruction.

 

Most of the settings are done over web configuration. Plus, we assume that you already created some scenes in the LSS software.

How to set LED Controller:

  1. Prepare SD-Card. Don’t know how?
  2. In the main menu of LSS software, go to Tools -> Export SD LSS 3 (LN2) You can see there 3 different icons:
    1. Export only one scene.
    2. Export whole bank, which exports every scene from a chosen bank.
    3. Export a chosen show – file name of the exported show will be also EFFXXX.LN2, where XXX can be set to values 1 to 255.
  1. Click on one of the export options.
  2. Pop-up window Choose Ethernet will appear. Choose the current IP of a controller where you would like to export scenes. Important – before export, you have to map and bind LED strips to outputs of the LED controller. Learn more about LED mapping.
  1. Choose Save to location (SD-Card).
  2. Insert SD-Card to the LED controller. In case you are using TM1809 800kHz LEDs, you can use buttons to switch between scenes. If not, please follow these steps.
  3. Open web configuration of the LED controller.
  4. In the main menu of web configuration, choose Main settings – > go to the Outputs section, where you can easily choose the right type of LED and color order. Save your changes.
  1. We recommend to run test before you try SD-Card mode: DMX.
  1. In the main menu of web configuration, choose DMX sett. -> DMX section. Check the SD-Card DMX/Art-Net mode. SD-Card section will be available now.
  2. Set a default DMX address from 1 to 255. The default value is 1, but you can start on different DMX address.
  1. Follow this DMX order channel list:

 

1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Brightness (255 default)

 

Animation (1-255) Speed (128 default)

 

R G B W

 

We recommend using Animation step size in case you are using sliders to change animations. For example, console slider can change values from 0 to 255. If you set Animation step size on value 128, you will be able to change animation value in 2 steps, no 255. In case that you are using buttons, set the Animation step size on 1.

2.5. Art-Net mode

Art-Net mode is activated automatically while Art-Net signal is received by LED Strip Studio pixel controllers – SPI Matrix, LED Ethernet Controller 3 or Powered. You can use 3rd party Art-Net software and hardware to generate Art-Net signal.

The default setup of Art-Net mode is on the picture below.

  • Every SPI output using 7 Art-Net universes, which is 1024 RGB or 768 RGBW LEDs
  • Every SPI output of the controller is enabled, which means, that will display content on LEDs
  • Every SPI output of LED controller display 1024 RGB / 768 RGBW LEDs
  • Start Art-Net position is 1 for first SPI output and shift by 7 to next 3 SPI outputs (8, 15, 22)

You can overlap art-net universes trough all SPI outputs. For example, you can use the same art-net universes for the first 2 SPI outputs. Or you can use just a part of art-net universes which can overlap.

You don’t need to use all art-net universes if you don’t need them.

Art-Net settings allows you to set the number of LEDs in one pixel. This is an advanced feature and you have to be more familiar with the Art-Net itself. Big advantage though is that you can use less Art-Net universes for the same number of LEDs.

An Example of multiple LEDs as one pixel

You can set how many LEDs will represent one pixel. For example 1 pixel = 5 LEDs. It means that 170 pixels (1 art-net universe) * 5 = 850 LEDs.

 

 

Our LED controllers can control 1024 RGB LEDs per one SPI output.

1024 – 850 = 174 LEDs. If 1 pixel = 5 LEDs, then 174 / 5 = 34 pixels.

It means, that we will use only 2 art-net universes for controlling 1024 LEDs. First will control 850 LEDs, which is 170 pixels. The second will control 174 LEDs, which is 34 pixels.

In case you don’t want to use all SPI outputs, just select turn-off option.

2.5.1. Art-net mode: MADMapper

2.5.2. Art-net mode: Madrix

2.5.3. Art-net mode: ELM by Enttec

2.5.4. Art-net mode: ArKaos

2.5.5. Art-net: DMX OUT

You have option to use one Art-Net universe for DMX out. It’s a very useful feature when you control more devices over DMX.

 

You need to set which art-net universe you would like to use. Open web configuration -> Art-Net sett. section and set value “DMX OUT universe“.

2.5.6. Art-Net trigger – SD-Card

You are able to use one Art-Net universe as a trigger of scenes/animation saved on SD-Card. It can be a very useful feature, especially when you are using more LED controllers and Art-net devices.

The Art-net trigger has follows same configuration steps as SD-Card: DMX trigger. Plus, you need to define which Art-net universe triggers the animations.

Note – all DMX values in DMX sett section are chained/linked with DMX values in Art-net sett section!

An Example

I’d like to trigger animation/scene number 49 from the LED controller with Current IP 147. Brightness and speed of animation will be a default, same goes for RGBW values. I’d like to use the Art-net universe 11, where starting DMX address is at position 156. My web configuration will look like this:

Values for art-net universes will look like in this table:

 

156 157 158 159 160 161 162
255 49 128 0 0 0 0

2.6. Ethernet mode: LED Strip Studio software

In Ethernet mode, you can control your device with our LED Strip Studio software. Communication between LSS software and hardware is done via our own LSS protocol. This protocol is close to Art-Net, but with additional features to better communicate with our LED controllers – LED Ethernet Controller 3 or LED Ethernet Controller Powered. SPI Matrix supports Art-Net protocol, so no Ethernet mode is available (unless you Upgrade it to support both Art-Net and Ethernet)

Same as for Art-Net, you have to set IP address 192.168.1.X for all devices in the network 192.168.1.1. (255.255.255.0).

The main benefit among all other control options Ethernet mode has is the real-time control – you can drag and drop and play video, generate nice LED effects or even create complete LED shows synchronized with music.

Ethernet mode has the second highest priority after test mode.

Important to know

In case you have any problems with connectivity, turn off the firewall of your computer. If you are afraid about your security and data, please, set LSS software as known source in your antivirus system or firewall. Most antivirus programs allows this.

What to do to use Ethernet mode successfully?

 

  1. You need to download and install the latest version of LED Strip Studio software. After installation, ask for an activation of LSS software.
  2. Own one or several LED Ethernet Controller 3 or Powered. In case you have SPI Matrix, do the upgrade and enjoy pros of Ethernet mode.
  3. Set network on a computer, where you have installed and activated LSS software.
  4. Do the proper mapping and create scenes in LSS software.

Good to know

For start, we recommend all our customers to buy Demo-kit. It’s a starter package, ready out of the box, with benefits of a complete system – hardware and software. Here is a short video, where you can see the complete setup of Ethernet mode with LED Strip Studio software and LED Ethernet Controller 3.

Important to know

Please, notice that Mapping in LED Strip Studio software is independent of web configuration settings. For example, you can work with LED type 2 in software and have set LED type 3 in web configuration. As long you are using LSS software, it will apply all settings from LSS software.