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How to link multiple Ethernet based AlphaPix controllers together / Multiple IP Addresses
Last Updated: 07/13/2017
If your display has more than one Ethernet based controller such as the AlphaPix controller (note that this information does not apply to the EasyLights controller), you may be wondering how to link them together.

The first thing to be aware of is that most Ethernet based controllers are not like RS485 based Light-o-Rama controllers - they cannot be daisy chained (the EasyLights controller is the exception) together and thus to split the signal, we need what is called a network switch. HolidayCoro sells a network switch here: http://www.holidaycoro.com/product-p/720.htm that will work for most installations that have less than 4 AlphaPix controllers. Here is a diagram that shows how the switch works:



A single CAT5 cable comes into the network switch - it doesn't matter which port on the switch, then the data is split off to all the controllers connected to the same switch. As each switch has it's own IP address (e.g 192.168.0.51, 192.168.0.52, 192.168.0.53, etc), the controllers listen only for data destined for that specific controller.


Q: Where do I mount the network switch?
A: While each show configuration is different, if your controllers are close together, often mounting the small network switch into one of the controller housings will work fine. You can also mount the switch inside the building and run CAT5 network cable (up to 900 feet) from the switch to the controller, though typically it is less expensive to run a single cable from the show PC to the switch and then smaller lengths of network cable to each controller.

Q: Where can I purchase pre-made CAT5 cables?
A: HolidayCoro sells network cables here: http://www.holidaycoro.com/RGB-DMX-DIY-Accessories-s/1895.htm - CAT5 cables can also be found at other major retailers.

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