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Syncing audio-sensitive neon to live music


Zeromus-X

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Here's one that should bridge the gap between the Live Audio forum and the Lighting forum for a little while.

 

I've been thinking about car audio neon -- you know, the music sensitive ones that turn on and off to the beat. Some of them appear to be activated by vibration and some by sound. I picked up a few pieces, and they've got a wired control box with a tiny microphone in it to turn on and off to the beat, so these are definitely sound controlled. However, only low frequencies (and very sharp noises) seem to have any effect on the unit itself. A cranked-up Marshall doesn't do it, but a Mesa half stack does on palm muted notes. The bass rig sets the thing off constantly. Cymbals don't seem to have a large impact, but the bass drum and snare sure do.

 

I'm thinking about designing a stage setup based around this neon. Basically, I'm trying to come up with a way to sync it up with the beat of the songs. If I set it out in the open, it's being affected by way too many sources. Inside the bass drum works great (it turns on and off with the kick and snare, and the Mesa doesn't do anything to it because it's a little bit isolated) -- except the bass guitar still rumbles it to death, causing the neon to turn on the entire song.

 

Has anyone ever tried this? I'm thinking that if I can put the wired control box for the neon in some sort of soundproof box (it's only a few inches by a few inches, so it wouldn't be too tough) and set it in the bass drum then it'd work, but I don't know if that'd mess with his bass drum, either. :rolleyes: Not to mention having a hundred cables going into the drum won't be very aesthetic.

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I did a gig once where there was a flat perspex wall with loads of coloured neon strips behind it. The guy ran a show with loads of fades and colour washes from a computer. I can't remember what program he used but it was quite awsome. That's all I know.

 

Rimmer

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