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Electronic Theatre Controls Inc

Echo System Terminology and Definitions


ETC designed, distributed architectural system with options such as relays, 0-10v dimming, AC voltage dimming, low voltage dry or wet contacts, DMX snapshot and playback, and third party integration with other protocols.   All of this can be controlled by button stations, Astronomical timed events, phone and tablet apps, Paradigm architectural systems, etc.  An Echo system consists of three (3) types of product: Control Product, Output Product, and Station Power Supply.

Distributed System

System consisting of many pieces that do not have a centralized processor to store configuration data.  Each device stores its own data locally so there is no one location for everything.  The flexibility of distributed devices allows the system to scale up as the facility changes.

Control Product

Devices that a customer interacts with directly to put a command into the system.  Control Products include: Button Stations, Light sensors, Occupancy Sensors, Timeclock, etc.

Output Product

Devices that carry out a command to control a load.  Output Products include: Dimmers, Relays, DMX Scene Controller, Echo Touch Controller, etc. (Sometimes referred to as as "host")

Station Power Supply

A power supply to provide power and communication over the EchoConnect bus (wire).  There are multiple types of Station Power Supply, both external options as well as Station power supplies internally built in other Echo Products.  There are two capacities of station power supplies: 6 Control Products and 6 Output Products; or 16 Control Products and 16 Output Products.  Important Note: Only 1 Station Power Supply per Echo System.  

Aux Power Supply

In addition to the station power supply, some devices require an additional 24v DC aux power. Some examples: EchoAccess Interface, DMX Scene Controller, and Echo Expansion Bridge, among others.


The communication protocol that travels on the wire to communicate between devices.  For example, a button station sends out a “Play Preset 3 in Space 2” command, all the devices receive that command, and the action happens if it is in Space 2 and has information for Preset 3.


Room or area to be controlled.  Echo Spaces can be physically different spaces, or simply different parts of a larger room.  Examples include; Classroom (one Space), Offices (each office is a single Space) Auditorium (two Spaces, house lights and stage lights), Ballroom (each section of the ballroom that can be closed off is a different space.


All Echo Control and Output products require an Address.  The Address must be unique for each device in an Echo Space. Some products must have the Address set manually, such as button stations and sensors.  Other products have them automatically assigned, such as Output Products.


An individual level of control.  A relay or dimmer is assigned a Zone number.  Use Control Products to give values to the zone(s).  More than one output product can be assigned to the same zone.  If so, controlling that zone will command both products to respond identically.


A preset is a programmed scene of lights for an Echo Space.  Presets include all output products in the given Space.  It can be activated from various Control Products.  Note: only 1 Preset active at a time in a space.


A series of recorded looks, or presets, that are played in a programmed order.  Each step (look/preset) of the sequence can have a differently programmed fade in time and hold time.  Sequences are hosted in some Output Products.


A single Echo System connected to an Echo Expansion Bridge an Echo Expansion Bridge allows control between connected Echo Systems, making up to 4 Echo Systems become “segments” of a larger all-encompassing Echo System.

Space Combine

The concept of making two (2) or more Echo Spaces act as a single Echo Space.  Combining Spaces 1 and 3 mean that any commands directed to Space 1 or Space 3 will act in BOTH Spaces.  This includes Space Lockout (see below).  Zone and Preset numbers in each space will overlap and act accordingly. 

Space lockout

The ability to enable and disable the function of all manually activated control products in a Space that the customer interacts with. Examples include button stations.  Responsive Controls (Occupancy/Vacancy Sensors and Light Sensors) are not affected by a Space Lockout.


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