Lighting control console
A lighting control console (also called a lightboard, lighting board, or lighting desk) is an electronic device used in theatrical lighting design to control multiple stage lights at once. They are used throughout the entertainment industry and are normally placed at the front of house (FOH) position or in a control booth.
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All lighting control consoles can control dimmers which control the intensity of the lights. Many modern consoles can control Intelligent lighting (lights that can move, change colors and gobo patterns), fog machines and hazers, and other special effects devices. Some consoles can also interface with other electronic performance hardware (i.e. sound boards, projectors, media servers, automated winches and motors, etc.) to improve synchronization or unify their control.
Lighting consoles communicate with the dimmers and other devices in the lighting system via an electronic control protocol. The most common protocol used in the entertainment industry today is DMX512, although other protocols (e.g. 0-10 V analog lighting control) may still be found in use, and newer protocols such as ACN and DMX-512-A are evolving to meet the demands of ever increasing device sophistication. Some lighting consoles can communicate over a network via a switch to have more control over more complex systems. A common protocol for this is sACN (pronounced: streaming A.C.N.) or Art-Net.