How I Set Up My Display and Controllers (2019 Walkthrough)

By Kari / January 23, 2020

For the 2019 Christmas light display, I was really excited to try some different approaches and really expand my display.

In this video and post, I am going to walk through the set up I used for the display and hopefully this will be able to provide some inspiration on how you want to do the layout, wiring, and working with data.

Attic Power Supply

At the front of the house, access to the attic is mostly centered so that’s where I decided to put some controller setups.

How I Set Up My Display and Controllers

Using a CG15 Box made by Cablebox, is a weatherproof. I wanted to use weatherproof just in case there was any water that may have gotten into the attic.

The box stored the Rasberry Pi which is running the light show for the house. Honestly, I am torn on using Rasberry Pi for my lights because personally my preference is working with a desktop instead and setting up my lights with a program such as XSchedule or Vixen.

Throughout the front of the house, I was able to set up some permanent outdoor lights that I will be able to leave up all year. You can read more on how to do this, on my article about Permanent Outdoor Christmas Lights.

I set up a 4 output controller by Advatek and this controls my roof lights as well as outputs the DMX for the icicles.

Garage Posts

For the garage posts, I decided to use Boscoyo Studio Strips and all you need is a nail or a hook to stretch the strips into place. I used these at the entrance of the garage space.

Boscoyo Strips

What I do like about these strips is that they are very easy to use and holds the tension really well so there’s not as much movement.

On the other side of the garage space, I set up a power connection so that we could keep power cords out of the walkways as much as possible. This just has a simple timer that will turn the lights on and off at a set schedule.

Front of the House

At the front of the house, there is a box set up with a Falcon differential receiver and a power injection board.

This is set up to help control the lights over the garage, a couple of props, the sign in the front, and the left side of the house.

The sign was actually a very easy one to build where I just put together the wooden frame and was able to attach the sign to it. Personally, this approach was better since the sign did light up and passersby were able to see it.

The Porch

The porch definitely has a lot more design and lights on it. For the stairs and the porch poles, I was able to use more Boscoyo Studio Strips.

I was also able to set up more strips of lights, the props, and icicles for the point in the roof for lighting. These lights are controlled by DMX on the Pixlight board.

For the vertical strips, I was able to set these on the outside of the posts and just used a pipe to help hold them together and used the HolidayCoro clips.

Lastly, we have the control command center that mostly took place on the porch. It wasn’t as organized as I would have liked if I spent more time on it but it did work out very well.

On the porch, I have the main Falcon F48 that has a 300-watt power supply, a power distribution board, and a smart receiver all in one box. This all flowed and work really well together in managing all of the lights associated with the front porch.

There was also our tree indoors that I used an ENTTEC controller and power supply that controlled about 100 pixels set up on the tree itself.

An item I used a lot when working with connecting pixels was Scotchlok Connectors. These are so much easier to use and set up instead of sodering.

These Scotchlok connectors could possibly pull apart if they are pulled on hard enough, but I still like them a lot. (Check out my article on Fixing Pixels here!)

So, if you are taking down your lights I would recommend pinching the two connected ires together and then use a zip tie to help hold it together so that the wires don’t separate.

About the author

Kari

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