How to dedicate the remote to each of my 8 projectors

Randall McGehee

Novice Member
I am a high school video production teacher who has hung 8 Aaxa M6 projectors in a tight cluster from the ceiling of our high school auditorium, aimed upwards at the white ceiling, to be used for student video projection mapping projects.

The problem I am having is communicating with individual projectors with their remote. A single remote affects more than one projector. How can I dedicate a remote to its projector, so that it doesn't talk to other projectors? There are no exposed switches on the projector to customize the frequency a remote uses to communicate with it. I can't use the buttons on top of the projectors, as they are 15 feet up in the air. The manufacturer says they cant be tuned to a particular remote. They suggested using "USB IR Extender pointed at different angles" which makes little sense to me.

Any thoughts on a workaround would be greatly appreciated.

Randall
 

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Randall McGehee

Novice Member
Well it seems the best choice (until you tell me otherwise!) is to acquire eight IR extenders with very long emitter cables. Attach each emitter over a projector receiver, then on the other end at the extender's receiver, make some IR insulated cubbyholes, insert the receivers in their own cubbyhole, then use the remote inside the cubbyhole.
 

cynix

Member
Tape a length of plastic pipe to the end of the remote control, then you'd point the end of the pipe directly at the IR sensor on the projector you want to control. Bonus points if you can make it look like a light sabre.

It may also be possible to replace the IR transmitter in the remote with a different one that has a much narrower beam, normally the beam has quite a wide angle, but even so it might need some kind of additional shielding around the remote.
 

Randall McGehee

Novice Member
Hey thanks cynix! I think it might work! But another problem has cropped up: I'm having trouble reaching the buttons on the remote! I'm thinking I might need a second pole working in tandem with this one, in order to reach the buttons on the remote. Also, I went with ziptie instead of duct tape because I think it's a cleaner look.
 

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cynix

Member
Ah, didn't realise they were that high.

In that case... plastic pipe the width of the remote, cut to about a foot less than the full height floor to ceiling of the projectors. About chest height on the pipe cut away half the cross section of the pipe and insert the remote there. Then you can rest the pipe on the floor and move directly to each projector in turn, with the remote right in front of you.

Assuming you only need the remote for initial setup of each projector and and aren't making multiple changes during a presentation.
 

noiseboy72

Distinguished Member
Can I just say teaching kids about video mapping and other cutting edge techniques is fantastic! I do hope they learn a lot about creating immersive art and some of the technical challenges it creates.

Just FYI, if you were doing this sort of thing commercially, you would choose projectors with wired remotes or control over ip. I do like the plastic pipe idea however. Maybe fit a short piece over each receiver to make control of 1 projector at a time even easier?

How do you manage the blend and morph between each projector? Is it software driven or have you had to set this up on the projector? What software and hardware are you using? 8 full HD outputs is usually hard work for a single pc, so are you running this on a couple servers?
 

Randall McGehee

Novice Member
@noiseboy72 Well I never envisioned the project getting to this scale. The first time it was creating foam core assemblages on a big table in the classroom with 4 projectors easily reached: 2018 student projection mapping. That grew to stacking 75 huge white cardboard moving boxes on the auditorium stage and projecting onto them: 2019 student projection mapping. But there's a lot of competition for the auditorium stage, hence I decided to use the ceiling!

Knowing what I know now, I would say that your suggestion about wired remotes would be a mandatory capability of a projector, absolutely. There's no blending/morphing to set up on the projector itself. The mapping & media creation/handling is done by Madmapper, and we use Vézer to sequence what happens and when. We also use a music app called Filmstro (somewhat similar to Garageband's capabilities) to create "original" music to accompany the light show.

I talked my school district into spending 6K+ for two badass Macbook Pros that each have 4 HD video outs designed to handle this sort of situation--we'll see!!

Yes, i might even hotglue a short section of the same PVC pipe to the back of the projector itself to make a better dock for the remote pipe.
 

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