Diffused-LED-Tape-Stage-Design

Diffused LED Tape

James Tucker from Christ’s Church in Jacksonville, FL brings us this cool LED tape design diffused by Coroplast.

They wanted something slick for their summer series. James had been wanting to something cool with LED tape for a while. So they purchased eight 16′ rolls of LED tape and cut them in half. The tape had female connectors on each end, so no soldering was needed. Once cut, they zip tied the strips onto some 1×2’s. The tape does have some sticky 3m stuff on the other side, but James was scared it wasn’t going to hold in Florida humidity.

Then they took their 1x2s and attached them to the back side of some old shadow boxes from their previous look. Each tape piece was then wired to a control box via a 15′ tape extension and a coupler. The boxes were addressed and patched as generic 3 channel RGB fixtures on our console.

Once they had their LEDs up and running, they added the Coroplast. They used “natural” Coroplast attached to 4×8 frames. It’s a bit frosty so it makes the tape look nice and soft. The natural lines of the Coro added a nice texture as well.

They wanted to toss some additional scenery in front of their stage doors to compete the look. To save time/cost of building frames to hold the tape, they stacked choir risers and zip tied their 1×2 strips accordingly and placed Coro flats in front.

From James:

The strips get a bit steppy at long fades but it’s cool. Also, never noticed any flickering on cameras. – the connector that is used on the tape is crummy… Hindsight is 20/20, should of used RJ45 connectors. They at least lock. – the more DMX boxes you purchase, the crazier the looks you can get. With this set, we have 10 boxes controlling the lights. Some are 2-fer’d controlling a pair of strips, some are single. Using the M1’s (console) grouping system, you can make 3 color looks really easily. We also do a multitude of dimmer and R/G/B chases. $250 – 16 sheets of natural coroplast $400- led tape and DMX boxes (amazon) $150 – extra lumber for additional flats

Links to Materials:

 

center close choir riser Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 4.44.37 PM set in pieces set in process

12 responses to Diffused LED Tape

  1. Thanks for providing those links! It’s great to know these parts are tested to work with each other.

  2. Great Idea. Could you explain how to connect DMX controller to LED strips.

  3. Hi there.

    To get the tape to connect to the dmx box use one of these:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00D0Y8SG6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00D0Y8SG6&linkCode=as2&tag=jscriptcom-20&linkId=UHNQ5DECG6DUCFMO

    This screws into the plastic removable phoenix connector on the back of the dmx box. Its bare wire on one end, weird 4 pin led tape connector on the other.

    The controller box itself gets DMX from my console via the 3 pin cable on the front of the converter box.

    Hope that helps.

  4. What did you guys use for a controller box and power supply? We want to do some back lighting sermon logos, etc with RGB LED tape. But I’m not sure what controller DMX box to get, nor what kind of power supplies I would need for about 50′ total of tape. Thanks!

  5. I would be interested in your control box used as well. Can you explain?

  6. In your opinion, would one of the DMX controllers be able to handle powering/controlling two 16’strips using the “two-fers” you’ve listed? I’m guessing the “two-fers” you have listed were used to put two 8′ sections off one DMX controller in your design, correct? Or, no?

    • Hey Jesse,

      We just did a stage design using these strips. I had to piec-meal it together, as I had no idea how to pull it off. I can tell what we did, and it turned out great! For each control you want (we wanted 3 control lines), you have to buy a DMX box. We got the Tomcat DMX controller for LED strips on amazon.com for about $22. That is where you plug in your RGB LED strips, one contact for each color, and then a black control wire. To power the DMX control box, you need to buy an LED power transformer. We wanted to put 2 16′ strips on one control line, so we got the 130watt transformer on amazon.com. more expensive (around $60), but when we connected 3 strips to it (for a total of 48′), the 3rd strip was incredibly dim. I gaff taped the DMX box onto the transformer box, effectively making it into 1 unit to control RGB strips. About $100 total, but well worth the cost!

      • Hi Jake!

        So do you need a separate power supply for the DMX box? What about the power supply that comes with the LED tape?

        • Most bulk LED tape doesn’t come with a power supply. Think about it as dimming regular par cans. Each Par64 needs a dimmer pack in order to be dmx controlled. Same thing with the LED tape. Think that Red is a separate Par, Green and blue, its very analog. Do you need a power supply that has DC (positive and negative) power out to connect to the DMX Tomcat control box. That control box then dims and brightens the RGB colors, analog, literally dimming the power going to each of them. Since that control box requires power as well, using a standard power supply won’t cut it. Most LED tape meant for stage use will just come in a roll, with 4 power connectors on the end, Red, Green, Blue, and a negative DC line. That help at all? This is the tape that we bought and it worked very well. One power supply and one dmx control per strip: http://www.amazon.com/SUPERNIGHT-TM-Waterproof-Flexible-Changing/dp/B00D8WNHXE/ref=sr_1_36?ie=UTF8&qid=1439912819&sr=8-36&keywords=LED+strip+supernight

  7. Where did you get the coroplast from?

  8. Any flicker on camera with your LED setup?

    • The LED tape doesn’t flicker at all. We don’t have the lights pointed at our cameras however. Because we diffused them, you’re not looking at the actual LEDs. But when diffusing them, or aiming them away from the camera, there is no flickering. I cannot speak to pointing them at the camera, but I highly doubt that they would flicker.

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