Front panel definitions
Multi-Function Faders (MFFs)
FLX consoles are equipped with 24 Multi-Function Faders. These can quickly and easily be switched between their two functions (“Channels” and “Playbacks”) by using the Fader Funct. button.
When set to “Channels”, the faders directly control each light (or “fixture”) in the rig. Each fixture, no matter what it is, will have a single “Channel Number”, and so will take up a single channel fader. FLX consoles have no fixture limitation. The Page buttons can be used to switch the faders between fixtures (see below).
Playbacks (or cues, stacks, submasters or chases)
Lighting “states” (or “scenes”) can be pre-recorded, ready to be recalled later. They are called “cues”, and are recorded onto “playbacks”. Each playback can store a single cue, or multiple cues. FLX consoles support 240 playbacks, plus the “Master Playback”. Traditionally, playbacks with a single cue have often been referred to as “submasters” whereas playbacks with multiple cues have often been referred to as “cue stacks”. We simply call them all playbacks.
On FLX, the page buttons allow you to Page Up or Page Down through all the available Channels or Playbacks (dependent on the current selection of the Fader Function button). You have a maximum of 99 pages in Channels, and 10 pages in Playbacks. Switching between “Channels” and “Playbacks” will automatically change the page to the page you had previously selected when in that function. By default, you will only be able to page through Channel pages that have fixtures patched, and Playback pages that have programmed playbacks.
For many shows, especially theatrical, a single playback is often used with a long list of pre-recorded cues. For these situations, an additional “Master Playback” is provided. A double-width Play / GO button and a dedicated pause button is included.
User Definable Keys (UDKs)
Four UDKs are provided and can be assigned to a range of functionality including recalling lighting states, Groups, Palettes, and Effects, or accessing advanced functionality such as RemDim or Highlight.
Function keys either perform functions themselves (like Homeand View), or change the functionality of other buttons when pressed at the same time (like Setupand Shift).
Command keys are used during programming to access commands such as Record, Updateand Delete.
Fixture’s parameters are grouped together into four attributes for easy access and control. A fifth attribute, called “Effect”, manipulates parameters to create effects such as “Circle”, “Ballyhoo”, “Lightning” and “Rainbow”. These five attribute buttons can be found along the right hand side of the internal touchscreen.
Four encoder wheels are provided and used for accurate control of various settings. The settings currently being controlled by the four encoders are displayed in the four boxes along the bottom of the touch screen, just above the encoders. The button in the middle of each encoder is occasionally used to perform an additional, but related, task.
The main keypad area is made up of a standard numeric keypad. Channels can be controlled using either the keypad or via the faders.
Grand Master & Blackout
The Grand Master fader allows you to temporarily decrease the overall intensity of all fixtures. In normal operation, the Grand Master should be at 100%. The LED within the Black Out button flashes slowly when the Grand Master is at any value other than 100%. The Black Out button takes all intensities to 0%. The LED within the button flashes quickly when active. The function of this button can be switched between “Flash” and “Latch” by holding Setup and pressing Black Out . When set to “Flash”, the button will only be active whilst being held whereas, when set to “Latch”, the button will toggle between being active and turned off each time it’s pressed. Each time FLX is turned on, the Grand Master is reset to 100% and Black Out is turned off, no matter the position of the physical fader.
The ZKey places a range of quick access settings & functions on the internal display and encoder wheels.
FLX consoles include a USB 2.0 port on the front panel. FLX also includes four other USB ports around the console. USB ports can be used for:
- Keyboard & Mouse (mouse on external monitor only)
- Touchscreen (DVI-D required)
- External Storage Devices (such as Memory Sticks)
- ZerOS Wings
- Enttec USB to DMX devices
- USB desk lights
On FLX, the USB ports are “overload protected” in pairs. If a USB device tries drawing too much power, FLX will disable that pair or ports until the device is unplugged.