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MQ500 controls 64.000 parameters, 186 universes Vorige Naar overzicht Volgende

ChamSys MagicQ MQ500 controls 2.260 moving lights at 2018 NYE Gala

Arf&Yes [Belgium] has raised the bar to a new level by controlling a record breaking 64,000 parameters over 186 universes direct from a single MagicQ MQ500 console to illuminate a spectacular centre piece of 2,260 moving lights. An additional 50 universes of key lighting were easily controlled from a second MagicQ MQ500.

The four hour long Jiangsu satellite TV's 2018 NYE Gala TV show consisted of 60 different songs all individually programmed to time code during an intensive 6 days of multi user console programming and rehearsals.


The Arf & Yes team was led by Lighting Designer Ignace D'Haese assisted by programmers and operators Philippe Vanderheeren, Alain Corthout, Timothy De Mets, Tijs Coene, Harm Op De Beeck and Joeri Pluym.

The rig was previsualised in Capture Nexum visualiser and then using the ChamSys inbuilt visualiser patch feature automatically transferred to ChamSys MagicQ software. 



Onsite time was severely limited with only two days of system check, three days allocated for preset and three days of rehearsal and show.  As was to be expected with this size of rig, it was several days into the programming when the full rig became available.

Timothy and Alain made full use of the MagicQ multi console mode to program the 2400 moving lights simultanously on two MagicQ MQ500 consoles in net sessions mode.

In MagicQ net sessions mode two users can operate independently on the same show file, each with their own console.  Each console has an independent programmer enabling the users to work with the same fixtures without affecting the other user.  The users choose who has control of the real output fixtures whilst the other user can program blind or using visualisation.

During the preset and focus stage Position palettes were created, updated and merged simultaneously on both consoles, whilst when programming songs, each user could control a part of the rig with and record and merge into Cues and Cue Stacks simultaneously.

Both consoles received time code, so it was possible to simultaneously record separate time code track activity from each console enabling each user to record bumps and flashes appropriate for their section of the rig.

Timothy De Mets explained the unique MagicQ features that helped them the most to achieve such a mega feat of programming in so short a time:
  • Patch offset. Life saver with 3000 plus fixtures that regularly required servicing and replacement. At night we had one operator that would offset the same preset over and over again. Fantastic!
  • Copy heads.  Amazing when you want to add lights to a Cue or Cue Stack to do the same as fixtures programmed already in the Cue or Cue Stack.
  • Record TC track. 60 songs with a lot of electronic blips and blops. Huge time saver!

ChamSys MagicQ - the obvious choice

We asked the Arf & Yes team to explain more about why they chose ChamSys MagicQ for the project:

Why did you chose MQ500 for this project?

Console size, ease of programming and adapting FX parameters on two screens, ease of access to palettes/groups.

180 universes from one console without the need for Cue processing nodes

What do you like about ChamSys MagicQ consoles in general?

Very fast programming without the need for a thousand different macro's to run.

Easy to adapt FX settings. Pre-programming offline without the need for any processing nodes

What functions did you like the most?

Offset in patch, backwards compatible, easy to update/rollback, FX engine, pallet FX. 

What was the hardest part in this project?

The amount of fixtures...and the time required to program a single focus preset - if you assume 5 seconds per fixture then multiply by 2800 fixtures.... then you know..

We used timecode for 90% of the songs. TC track made it easy to follow the accents in the music without the need to program every accent in a Cue in the Cue Stack.

The Arf & Yes team and technical specs

Ignace D'Haese (Lighting Designer)
Philippe Vanderheeren (Spot caller, Technical production, LD)
Alain Corthout (Programmer, operator)
Timothy De Mets (Programmer, operator)
Tijs Coene (Programmer, Technical production)
Harm Op De Beeck (Programmer, operator)
Joeri Pluym (System Engineer)

Set Design: Skywalker

Lighting Supplier: Nanjing Vision Engineering Compan

SHOW LIGHTS CONSOLES - operators: Alain Corthout, Timothy De Mets, Tijs Coene

2 x MagicQ MQ500 + MagicQ Execute Wing (master /slave)

182 universes

2,260 moving lights

72 static (LED strobe)

96 RGB fixtures

sACN output broadcast

KEY LIGHTS CONSOLES - operator: Harm Op De Beeck

2 x MagicQ MQ500 + 2 x MagicQ Playback Wing (master/backup)

45 universes

156 moving lights

230 static

70 fx (vertical smoke)



About ChamSys MagicQMQ500

The MagicQ MQ500 Stadium is a powerful control console from ChamSys designed to operate at the highest level of show control.  MagicQ MQ500 Stadium enables shows to be designed from concept to reality including lighting, media, LED and scenic design.

The MQ500 Stadium features:

  • dual multi touch displays in full HD with adjustable viewing angle and gesture support. 
  • Inbuilt MagicVis 3D visualiser with high quality beam and gobo rendering.
  • Supports for up to 102,400 parameters onboard and 200 universes direct from the console without the need for external processing.  
  • intensity wheel and 100mm split crossfaders for theatre control
  • 42 fader and executor playbacks for live busking.



All pictures are for information only. Products, specifications and timescales subject to change without notice. E&OE.