Welcome back to 18 in 2018. It’s Day 10. Today I want to talk about building a default preset that we’ll use at the top of all of our cuelists. This one is a little tricky to understand in concept- but if you’ve ever toured a production where you change fixture types in your rig between venues, and you’ve found very strange defaults tracking through your sequences…. You’re going to find this one helpful.
As always, lets start with backing up our show and renaming it to reflect the day. If you don’t have the showfile- take a second to download it from the link in the YouTube description, or at my website, consoletrainer.com.
This Default Values Preset is different from the “Default Mode” of presets that I’ve talked about in another video. In the Position pool of our showfile, you can see that we have one of those Default Mode presets called “Default POS.” That was a preset created to change the position default of some of our fixtures. You don’t normally use these presets in cues. What I’m talking about in today’s video is a preset that puts hard values on every channel of every light in my rig that reflects the defaults I would expect- stuff like fixtures being at zero, no color, no gobo, etc: A preset that we’ll store in the top of all of our sequences. That preset probably contains the special default values that I set for positions…. but where this is going to come in really handy is when you’re swapping or cloning fixtures in your rig to different fixture types. Have you ever swapped a fixture type and played back your sequences only to discover that your new fixture type is strobing in every single cue? That’s a common issue because the numeric strobe values for open/closed/pulsing/etc are wildly different between manufacturers, and we don’t often take the time to put presets into our cues to make sure that our strobe is set to be “Open” at the top of the sequence. Then, of course, this strange number tracks through the rest of our sequence. Putting in a Default Value Preset at the top of every sequence – one that we can easily update- is going to fix this.
The way to make it is crazy simple. Best practice is to turn off all running sequences, timecode, chases, everything. I’m hitting the OFF key twice and then selecting “Everything OFF” to ensure no playback will interfere, and my lights are sitting at their defaults. Then, I’ll just select my entire rig and hit the PLEASE key twice to turn the current look into hard values on all of my parameters. There is one additional thing that you may want to consider- and that is if you have any values parked. Consider whether you want those values stored into the default or not, and edit those parameters to whatever best suits your show’s needs. Now, I’ll store this somewhere. I’m going to choose the ALL pool for simplicity- but it can be wherever you like. I’ll name it “Default Values” and clear out my programmer. Going forward, when I’m storing a new sequence, the first thing I will do is to store this preset into a setup cue (for me, I like to make them Cue .5). If you’re like me and also like to store the position, color, etc information for your first few cue looks into cue .5, you can still add those in on top of this information. The idea here is to have a preset reference for everything you don’t activate in your sequence. That way, when you swap a fixture and find that maybe there’s another strange default parameter on your new unit, you can just update the default value preset once, and all of the sequences referencing it will be immediately updated.