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Tech Talk – SLESA vs DiGidot

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In our last Tech Talk, we covered LED Neon Flex max run lengths. This week, we’re going to discuss the differences between SLESA and DiGidot controllers as well as how to choose one for your project.

Both of these controllers are compatible with our Vivid Pixel as well as Vivid RGB fixtures. We sell them mostly with our Vivid Pixel fixtures, however. This is because they are designed for more complex animations than an RGB fixture can produce alone.

For the sake of this article, we will be focusing on the SPI functions of each controller.

DiGidot

DiGidot Extended
DiGidot Extended shown.
The DiGidot is a controller that we have recently started offering with our fixtures. The DiGidot runs an ArtNet system that primarily outputs SPI, but is also capable of DMX output.

When outputing SPI, the cable connecting your DiGidot to your fixtures should be no longer than 32.81ft (10m). If you require your DiGidot to be installed further away from your fixtures, you can attach an RX/TX accessory to amplify the SPI signal. This will allow you to run cables of up to 820ft (250m).

With a DiGidot, you must also have your own programming software. Most ArtNet software is compatible with DiGidot. We currently use MADRIX.

There are two versions of DiGidot available for our fixtures: Live as well as Extended.

DiGidot Live

  • Must be connected to a computer at all times. Not capable of Stand Alone function.
  • No triggers, such as buttons, are necessary. You will control all programming as well as triggers from the computer.
  • Control up to 12 universes with a single DiGidot Live.
  • Daisy chain DiGidot controllers together with ethernet to control up to 400 universes.

DiGidot Extended

  • Stand Alone controller, no computer necessary after programming.
  • Triggers must be planned and programmed beforehand.
  • 8 GB Micro SD card included.
  • Control up to 8 universes with a single DiGidot Extended.
  • Daisy chain DiGidot controllers together with ethernet to control up to 400 universes.
  • You can also daisy chain DiGidot Extended controllers to Live controllers. They will act as a Live controller.

SLESA

SLESA U9
SLESA U9 shown.

The SLESA controllers output DMX. The cable connecting a SLESA to your fixtures can be up to 1500ft (457.2m) in length.

Software is provided with these controllers when you purchase them. You can also find the software on Nicolaudie’s website.

The three available SLESA controllers are all compatible with our fixtures: U9, U8, as well as the UE7.

SLESA U9

  • Stand Alone Channels: 256 (1/2 universe).
  • Live Channels: 512 (1 universe).
  • Compatible software: ESA as well as ESA2.
  • One 3-pin DMX output port.
  • No ethernet port.
  • Infrared: no.
  • No daisy chaining.
  • HE10: one port. Connect buttons or activate triggers using your method of choice.

SLESA U8

  • Stand Alone Channels: 512 (1 universe).
  • Live Channels: 1024 (2 universes).
  • Time triggering: internal clock keeps track of the time of day, allowing you to program scenes that change during the day.
  • Compatible software: ESA as well as ESA2.
  • Two 3-pin DMX output ports.
  • No ethernet port.
  • Infrared: no.
  • No daisy chaining.
  • HE10: one port. Connect buttons or activate triggers using your method of choice.

SLESA UE7

  • Stand Alone Channels: 1024 (2 universes).
  • Live Channels: 1538 (3 universes).
  • Time triggering: internal clock keeps track of the time of day, allowing you to program scenes that change during the day.
  • 128mb micro SD card included. You can use a card size up to 4GB.
  • Compatible software: ESA2 as well as ESA Pro.
  • One 3-pin DMX output port as well as one 5-pin DMX output port.
  • One ethernet port.
  • Infrared: yes. Remote control capabilities.
  • No daisy chaining.
  • HE10: one port. Connect buttons or activate triggers using your method of choice.

There is a method to daisy chain UE7 controllers using the Ethernet port. For this example, we’ll say we want a total of 8 universes.
To daisy chain the SLESA UE7 together, you’ll need to connect a router to a computer. To reach 8 universes, we’ll require 4 SLESA UE7s outputting 2 DMX universes each. For each SLESA, we’ll also require 2 decoders (one per universe). The fixtures would then be connected to the decoders and controlled this way.
SLESA UE7 Ethernet daisy chain
As you can imagine, this is an expensive way to reach 8 universes.

The Verdict?

Generally speaking, if your project is large enough to require more than 2 or 3 universes, it’s well worth it to invest in a DiGidot.
The SLESA is a good controller for smaller projects, and it also comes pre-packaged with its own software.
Ultimately, your project is going to dictate which controller you require, and our Technical team will be happy to assist you in choosing one!

Check back in for our next Tech Talk on July 30th!

Have any technical questions? Contact Tech Support
Want to suggest topics for future posts? Email us!
To speak with a sales rep about our LED Neon Flex products, Contact Us today!

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