Abekas supplies a 10 meter (33') cable for connecting a Control Panel to the A51 Main Chassis. Optionally available are cables in 15 meter (50'), 30 meter (100'), and 45 meter (150') lengths.
This cable supplies both the RS-422 style communications between the Control Panel and Main Chassis, and +24V power to the Control Panel.
Instead of using an Abekas supplied cable, you may construct a custom cable. There are two considerations to take into account:
- The Main Chassis 24V power supply can drive a Control Panel up to 45 meters (150') away. Distances greater than this require using a local power supply.
- The RS-422 style communications have a cable length limit of 610 meters (2,000').
The cable used is 22 gauge, 9 parallel conductors, and is unshielded. Note that separate conductors are used for chassis ground, signal ground, and 24V power return. These grounds are at differing potentials and should not be interconnected at any point.
Main Chassis Control Panel
(15 pin male) Function (9 pin male)
1 +24V Power Supply --> 1
2 + Receive Data <-- 2
3 + Transmit Data --> 3
4 Circuit Ground 4
5 Not Used N/A
6 Reserved 6
7 - Transmit Data --> 7
8 - Receive Data <-- 8
9 24V Return 9
10 Not Used N/A
11 Not Used N/A
12 Chassis Ground 5
13 Not Used N/A
14 Not Used N/A
15 Not Used N/A
TheSigma wrote:...what is the floppy disk for? storing programs? or Can it load graphics as well.
I am under the impression that this thing can do some warping and rotating effects and other stuff.
I kinda went out on a limb for this one because it was only 10 bucks and and a 20 minute drive to pick it up, and I got a couple cameras and monitors from the same guy. so far everything has worked perfectly, and the A51 powers up and shows it's status screen so I am hopeful.
eadler wrote:I have a recently acquired Magni signal generator here (sans manuals) as well. Any details you could provide on it and how to use it would be great
I have no idea what slot 1 is used for... there's nothing shown in the manual for that. Perhaps it was used for factory testing.
You wouldn't be somewhere in the Central New York area, would you? We have a working system here, and you could stop by for a look at how it works and how it interconnects with the rest of the system...
TheSigma wrote:As for the Magni, I do not have a manual for it, and I can't even find a corporate website, Are they Defunct now? Bought up by someone else? I think I could figure it out if my card worked (and the battery is probably dead on it, so If i got a new battery and could get the data for it...)
Magni was founded in the mid-80s by a handful of folks from Tektronix, but never really made up their mind whether they were in the test equipment business, or the computer graphics business. Ultimately, they failed at both... ironic, because most of what they made then has become pretty typical design by today's standards and should have made them successful. I don't think they shipped a significant amount of product since the late '90s or so.
About the battery: its been a few years since I had to replace ours... if I remember correctly, the original type is no longer available. I had to fashion a replacement from individual cells, lashed together and insulated with heat shrink tubing. The unit will certainly operate with a bad battery -- but it will forget settings (like timing adjustments) if the power goes away.
So I got to play with this thing for a few minutes the other day and my cable works and the unit responds to conrol. Didn't get it hooked up to sources yet, but looks promising.
I do not have a warp board, guess I didn't count the empty spot at the top (which has no card contacts anyway). I also do not have a combiner or the card extraction tool. I see some warp boards on ebay for about $150, is it worth it? I can't do that right now anyway but if it is a must have I'll keep my eyes open.
PID_Stop wrote:The warp board option lives in slot 5... I don't think anything goes in slot 1. The combiner option is a separate pair of single rack-unit devices, one of which fans a single keyboard to up to four A51 chassis and coordinates control among them; the other combines video from the chassis according to data that asserts which channel should be visible for any given pixel. We have both options here, because we have a two-channel system.
Your non-warp system can do plain rotation effects in all three axes; for instance, you can spin the picture around like the hands on a clock, or you can rotate it in the Z azis, which makes it look like you're flipping a photo around to see the back (and that's where the two video inputs come into play: you can have a different source feeding the back). The limitation is this: the video will always be flat, in the form of a plane; you can control the position, size and orientation, but it will still be flat.
Warp adds effects that distort the plane into other shapes: for instance, the picture can wrap around a cylinder, or you can have the picture curl for a page-turn effect. You will see a sheet somewhere in the warp section of the manual (I think it's at the end) that shows the different effects you can get from that card. Whether it's worthwhile is really an aesthetic call, based on what you want to accomplish. If you're just doing squeezebacks to inset your live camera over another source -- for instance, a graphic with text on the bottom -- you probably won't ever miss it.
The other thing to be careful about is that there are two revision levels for the system: there's the A51, and the A51+. If you do look for a warp board, it must match the version of your chassis.
TheSigma wrote:OK, now that I have bid on another A51, it's a + and I think mine is not....oh well, I didn't bid much for it if I win it oh well, it is not functioning but has a warp board, controller and disk drive. I assume the controller and drive are compatible with both versions? What are the other differences? It is the mainframe that is incompatible, no boards can be swapped between them? What makes the Plus a Plus?
Thanks again for the info,
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