Back2Basics Series - Part 5 - Lighting Controllers

Welcome to the fifth part of our Back2Basics series where we are focussing on different industry related topics, the series is mainly for newbies to the industry or for people looking to expand on their current offering and want to find out some basic information about different technologies, today our topic is Lighting Controllers.  

Lighting controllers are devices or software applications used to control lighting systems in various settings, such as stage productions, concerts, clubs, and architectural lighting. These controllers enable the user to manipulate the lighting fixtures and create dynamic and visually appealing effects.

There are several types of lighting controllers available, ranging from simple manual controllers to complex computer-based systems. Manual controllers typically consist of a set of physical sliders, buttons, and knobs that can be used to adjust the intensity, colour, and position of the lights. More advanced controllers may use DMX (Digital Multiplex) protocol, a digital communication standard used to control lighting systems, allowing for more precise control and synchronisation of multiple fixtures.

Computer-based lighting controllers are becoming increasingly popular in the industry due to their flexibility and functionality. These controllers use specialised software and hardware interfaces to communicate with the lighting fixtures and can create complex and synchronised lighting effects. They often feature a graphical user interface that allows the user to program and control the lighting with greater ease and precision.

In addition to controlling the lighting fixtures themselves, lighting controllers can also be used to automate the lighting system. For example, a lighting controller can be programmed to turn specific lights on and off at certain times or in response to particular events, such as a change in music tempo or a performer's movement on stage.

Overall, lighting controllers play a crucial role in creating visually compelling and immersive experiences in a variety of settings, and the choice of the controller will depend on the specific needs of the user and the complexity of the lighting system.