DMX512 is a digital communication protocol commonly used for controlling a multitude of concert stage lights from a single source. It’s also employed in bars, restaurants and automated homes to create dazzling lighting effects with RGB LEDs.
A single DMX output transmits a signal with 512 channels.. To control the many functions of a stage light fixture (colors, movement and other effects) more than one signal channel is required. So while 512 seems sufficient, when creating elaborate lighting spectacles with a large number of fixtures, having just one DMX output can be limiting.
Most commercial DMX controllers have one DMX output, while the really expensive ones have up to four.
Enter Mr. Louis Oosterhoff, an electronics hobbyist, Elektor reader, and MikroElektronika fan. He took about a $100 worth of hardware and made a DMX controller with 16 outputs, that’s 8192 signal channels. The heart of his design is a PIC32 MCU on a MINI-32 board.
In Louis’ own words, the design is easy to replicate even for hobbyists without much experience. See the whole video for a detailed overview of the system.