Theatre Sound Design, Show Control & Audio Engine Software

The E-Show™ MIDI Tools & Network Drivers

by Joanne Dow
1999 Entertainment Design Magazine EDDY Award - Show Control Product of the Year
for
Industrial and Show Hardware with
100% TCP/IP Network Compatibility
Driven by ShowMan™ software
for real time control of all show production elements in the E-Show Network
ShowMan, SoundMan-Server & E-Show power Universal Hollywood's 'Waterworld' live stunt show



Compatible Industrial Hardware

E-Show Overview

The E-Show Network is based on industry standard 64 bit Windows 7 computers interconnected via a TCP/IP-based network: Normally Ethernet but essentially any TCP/IP compatible network, even the Internet, may be used. Compatible hardware comprises a variety of industry standard industrial devices from industrial computer suppliers and PLC manufacturers to provide maximum performance and reliability. Examples of these suppliers is provided and the cards and hardware may be purchased from RSD or directly from the supplier, where applicable.

E-Show Control Hubs

E-Show also supports direct Ethernet connection with Ethernet-capable industrial control devices (thereby eliminating the need for host computers at the remote terminals). Some makers of these devices are indicated in the supplier chart. If you have a favourite manufacturer of industrial PC interface cards or industrial Ethernet control hubs, we can integrate them into E-Show! Contact RSD for further information.

Serial and MIDI Ports Anywhere

For example, an Ethernet serial hub allows you to stick a serial port anywhere you need it and hang it off the E-Show network. Examples would be a rack of laserdisk players in the back of the booth, or a film projector backstage doing rear projection. And you don't need to run multiple serial cables to do it, just one Ethernet cable. Or you can have MIDI Anywhere. Just put in a Serial-to-MIDI converter and instant MIDI ports appear!

Maximum Reliability

Fail-Safe design can also incorporate Hot Standby. The Rocketport Serial Hubs can be set up to be controlled by two 64 bit Windows 7 boxes, so that one will take over as a backup if the main one loses communication. Other modes of redundancy and error-checking across the entire E-Show Network can be easily incorporated to your specifications. E-Show also fully supports the latest MIDI Show Control Two-Phase Commit (2PC) protocol for maximum dependability automatically.

MIDI

Any number of MIDI IN and MIDI OUT ports are available. Each computer normally contains a single MIDI IN and MIDI OUT port, which is generally more than adequate given the ability of a single MIDI channel to communicate with well over 1000 MIDI Show Control Devices.

Ethernet

Almost any Ethernet TCP/IP system devices may be incorporated directly into the E-Show system. RSD will provide software interfaces to these devices on an RFQ custom basis. Please contact us to establish the cost and availability of the interface you desire. An example of such an interface is the E-Show WonderWare ActiveX module and our own SoundMan-Server software.

TTL I/O

Any number are available, with up to 120 lines per PCI card. Typical uses are to interface with industrial PLC's, drive solid state relays and directly connect with HMI panels. Switches on the panel interface directly with TTL Inputs and LED's on the panel interface directly with TTL Outputs.

Serial I/O

Any number are available, with up to 64 ports per PCI card. RS-232, -422, -485 are standard with baud rates up to almost 1Mbps.

USB

High speed data transmission may be taken short distances by the Universal Serial Buses built into the computer mainboard.

IEEE 1394 (Firewire)

High speed point-to-point data transmission (up to 100Mbps) may be taken short distances with 1394 PCI interface cards.

DMX-512

Standard DMX-512 with up to 1024 channels of control is achieved using third party devices.

Ethernet linked PLCs

Many industrial PLC's now have Ethernet ports and can be controlled and monitored via Ethernet. PLC's open up the world of industrial control interfaces, including environmental monitoring, analog I/O, motor control, high voltage and power control, industrial processing and gateways to industrial networks such as MAP, DH+, DeviceNET, CAN, and of course the standard PLC world of parallel I/O interfaces of every type imaginable.

ModBus

Many industrial controls have ModBus ports and can be controlled and monitored via ModBus. These industrial automation devices open up the world of industrial control interfaces, including environmental monitoring, analog I/O, motor control, high voltage and power control, industrial processing and gateways to industrial networks such as MAP, DH+, DeviceNET, CAN, and of course the standard PLC world of parallel I/O interfaces of every type imaginable.

ButtonBuilder

ButtonBuilder creates and programs virtually any array of buttons and controls that can be conceived and overlays the computer screen with an easy-to-use user interface window that presents clear operational choices and functions along with full, programmable interactive menus and responses.

Other Interfaces

Additional special interfaces such as 0-10V analog output lines can be quoted by special order. Please contact RSD for further information.


E-Show Multimedia Devices, Utilities & Drivers

Multimedia MIDI Devices for 64 bit Windows 7

These devices and utilities provide any number of specialized MIDI IN and OUT ports accessible across the entire E-Show network.
  • The Ethernet Command device allows the execution of IP commands via MIDI sysex messages
  • The DOS Command device allows the execution of MS-DOS commands via MIDI sysex messages
  • The ButtonBuilder user interactive control device creates and programs virtually any array of buttons and controls that can be conceived and overlays the computer screen with an easy-to-use user interface window that presents clear operational choices and functions along with full, programmable interactive menus and responses.
  • The MIDI_AutomationDirect2_IO virtual PLC device is a configurable interface for AutomationDirect Ethernet-connected PLCs. All PLC output ports can be controlled by MIDI messages and all types of MIDI messages can be generated by PLC input ports.
  • MIDI_Ethergate virtual Device - sends commands to the ENTTEC DMXEtherGate for 512 channels of DMX lighting control per unit
  • MIDI_Fishcamp virtual PLC Device - allows input and output signals from Fishcamp parallel IO cards to be controlled by and control ShowMan via standard MSC messages
  • The MIDI_MTS232 device provides MIDI-to-Serial and Serial-to-MIDI interfaces just like the RSD model MTS-232 legacy hardware device. Make as many MTS-232 devices as you have standard PC serial ports in your E-Show network. It uses standard MTS-232 MIDI messages (shows written on Stage Manager® using MTS-232's can be imported and used directly) and handles ASCII serial input like an MTS-232. A configuration panel defines devices and sets serial port parameters. This setup panel has even more flexibility than an old style rack mount MTS-232!
  • MIDI_MTS232V2 Device - allows ShowMan to send data out any network-based serial port
  • The MIDI_Serial device sends raw MIDI via serial and accepts correctly formatted serial data for delivery to a virtual MIDI IN port. Again, devices are defined via a setup panel. This is great for fast cheap MIDI using baud rates of 115200 baud or higher depending on the serial card.
  • The MIDI_ModBus PLC device is a configurable interface for all ModBus connected PLCs and industrial automation controls. All output functions can be controlled by MIDI messages and all types of MIDI messages can be generated by input functions.
  • MIDI_ModBusIP PLC Device - allows input and output signals from ModBus based PLC's to be controlled by and control ShowMan via standard MSC messages
  • MIDI_Pioneer Device - allows ShowMan to control Pioneer DVD-7400 and LD7400 players over network-based serial port
  • MIDI_Serial Device - allows MIDI to be carried over any industry standard serial link at speeds much higher than standard MIDI
  • The MIDI_SimpleDMX device sends commands to the Artistic Licence DMXDongleII and Dove StarPort and the MIDI_Ethergate talks to the ENTTEC DMXEtherGate for 512 channels of DMX lighting control per device
  • The MIDI_Wire utility is a configurable MIDI Patch Bay which runs resident on any 64 bit Windows XP computer. Any of 10 MIDI OUT ports can be patched uniquely to any MIDI IN port across the entire E-Show network, including all ports created by the above Multimedia devices.
  • The NetMIDI device is a configurable set of 32 MIDI OUT ports and 32 merging MIDI IN ports. Each OUT and IN port can be named and selected much like a MIDI patchbay or OMS on the Macintosh platform. Individual IN and OUT ports can even be on different computers in the E-Show network!


E-SHOW HARDWARE SUPPLIERS

SUPPLIER Device Types Functions Available from RSD
WonderWare Mfr of PLC Monitoring via Ethernet Captures PLC actions and reports events No
MOXA Mfr of serial device servers to 16 ports RS-232 to 230.4kbps No
Comtrol Mfr of serial cards and hubs to 64 ports RS-232/422/485 to 230kbps Yes
Comtrol Europe Mfr of rackmount serial interfaces to 64 ports RS-232/422/485 to 230kbps Yes
Stallion Mfr of serial cards RS-232/422/485 Yes
Artistic Licence Mfr of DMX-Dongle II 512 Channel DMX Out Yes
Dove Systems Mfr of StarPort 512 Channel DMX Out Yes
ENTTEC Mfr of DMXEtherGate 512 Channel DMX Out Yes
Industrial Computer Source Retailer of all types of interfaces All types of serial and parallel ports No
Shopper Retailer of all types of interfaces All types of serial and parallel ports No
ModBus Users Group ModBus Users and Product Reference Web Site Listings and references for manufacturers, products and specifications of ModBus based control products Yes
Happ Controls Mfr of USB switch/game interfaces High speed input control ports No
Fishcamp Mfr of parallel interfaces Up to 128 parallel I/O lines with special features Yes
Opto 22 Mfr of Ethernet control hubs with parallel I/O ports Up to 32 parallel points under http: control No
Automation Direct Mfr of PLC's with Ethernet ports Thousands of parallel points on the network Yes
National Instruments Mfr of Ethernet control hubs with parallel I/O ports Up to 128 I/O points No
Systech Mfr of serial cards and hubs to 32 ports RS-232/422/485 under TCP/IP control Yes
Midiator Mfr of serial to MIDI converter 1 or 4 serial ports to MIDI Yes
Mediamation Mfr of serial to MIDI converter 1 serial port to MIDI IN/OUT Yes
Kenton Mfr of wireless MIDI systems "MIDIstream Wireless MIDI" No
Aquila Systems Mfr of wireless MIDI systems Wireless MIDI No
Epigraf Mfr of infrared MIDI systems "InfraredMIDI Equator" No
Pyrodigital Consultants Mfr of electronic pyro firing systems Electronic Firing Systems No
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2013-02-21

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