New User needs help understanding how to build cues from other cues

Let’s imagine that the programmer is cleared.

I select a few fixtures of the same type and set some parameters. Intensity 100%, color red.

I record this to a Playback button.

Now, I want to add more fixtures to what I already see. So, while the red lights are at 100%, I add two more fixtures and bring them up to 100%, color blue.

I press record, and click a 2nd Playback button. Now I have two scenes. In the third scene, I want the red lights to go to zero, so I take them out and record a third playback.

So here’s where I’m confused. When I click the first playback, the red lights fade in at the default 2.5s. When I click the 2nd playback, the first playback remains on and the 2nd one fires off and the blue lights come in. When I click the 3rd playback button, it fires off but nothing changes because the first cue is still running.

If I create each scene individually, clearing the programmer every time, it behaves differently, whereby each playback button disables the previous. Sometimes, however, they’ll run concurrently. I can’t figure out what conditions yield each scenario.

I suspect it has something to do with embedded settings from a previous cue? But even then, I’m a bit confused.

So what is the correct procedure to create a sequence of cues that build upon one another?

Hello Arretx,

What I understand is, that You create two separate cues on two different playbacks.
This is creating two separate cue lists, that actually are independent from each other, and can be mixed together, but without linking they will not affect each other like You want.

The easiest way to do it is that You need to program this on the same CUE list in order to get the effect You described.
Steps would be like this:

  1. Select the fixture and set it’s parameters.
  2. Record this to (Let’s say) CUE 1 on Playback 1.
  3. Change the fixture parameters (take out red, put in blue).
  4. Record on CUE 2 on the same playback.
  5. Change the look again.
  6. Record on CUE 3 of the same playback.
    Continue until You have the sequence as You need.

I hope this can help.
For more info Please visit Obsidian Online support page with all the explanations:


its about parameter over-rides. if the lights your starting with, arnt told to be off in your second cue, the second cue wont know to alter the light. remember that DMX is about sending commands out to the light. If you dont send out a Red 0 command, it wont change.

To fix this, you must select all the fixtures you want to change. OR add a macro - RELEASE [cuelist]
More on macros found here

assuming I am you, I have 8 PAR lights. [1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8]

I select all 8, and load them into the programmer [Load Load]
I select the middle 4 [3,4,5,6] make them RED 80%
Select PAR 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8
RECORD to Playback 1

[repeat for each PAR cue/scene]\OR Continue below

Play Playback 1, Hit [LOAD LOAD]
RELEASE Playback 1
Programmer still has the values, and now you can build on the playlist, and Save it as a cue in Playback 1, or a new cue on a new playback.

Remember, that if your new playback doesn’t have outgoing data (Ch# and Value#) then no change will occur. (Clear Clear is an all 0 command [or gradual command down to zero with a dim value]

Feel free to correct me on commands.

HAVE FUN, Be Creative!

Be aware that LTP and HTP can result in color blending if 2 different Playbacks are active. (discrepensies are on a per channel (Int, R,G,B,P,T,FX…ect). This can make a good look go bad LIVE, or this can help you get a ‘SWEET LOOK’. If so hit LOAD LOAD [release active playbacks] and [RECORD to a new Playback]. It’s a ‘no work needed’ Playback.

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I noticed, through trial and error, that sometimes when I record a playback with a single cue, then another playback with a single cue, they work such that you click one and it plays, then you click the other and it plays while the previous one stops.

In other cases, one would play, and the other would play without affecting the first so they’re both active.

What I couldn’t figure out is what makes the difference, as I didn’t explicitly select any options to make this happen? Thanks.

It’s LTP behavior.

You have to be familiar with, before to go deeper.

You have a cuelist with 1 fixture and another cuelist with the previous fixture + 1 more.

Activate first cuelist raise up the fixture 1.

Raise the second cuelist will raise up fixture 2, and for fixture 1, it will depend of your cue content for fixture 1.

If your cuelist 2 use the exact same parameter (or more, not less) for fixture 1 in its cue, so the cuelist 1 will be auto release.

In the other hand, if the cuelist 2 does not use all the same parameter for fixture 1 of cuelist 1, then both cuelist are running at the same time.

In this case, cuelist 1 common parameter will be replace by cuelist 2 value, and other parameter will have value set on each cuelist.

This is LTP (Latest Take Precedence)

I think I’m starting to get this.

Example 1:

Fixture 1, Channel 1, program to 100%.

Record to Playback 1

Clear Clear

Fixture 2, Channel 1, program to 100%

Clear Clear

Record to Playback 2

Now, each playback has a cue that addresses two separate single channels and as a result, both can and will run simultaneously when activated.

Example 2:

Fixture 1, Channel 1, program to 100%
Fixture 2, Channel 1, program to 0%

Record to Playback 1

Clear Clear

Fixture 1, Channel 1, program to 0%
Fixture 2, Channel 1, program to 100%

Record to Playback 2

Clear Clear

Now when Playback 2 runs, playback 1 releases, and vice versa.


Is this the rule? If a playback contains a cue that adjusts a single channel on a fixture that’s already running in another Playback, that entire playback will release and the new one will take over?

You’re in the right way.

But, it is not limited to one channel, it can be many channel.

Cuelist 1
Fixture 1 rgb + intensity
Fixture 2 intensity

Cuelist 2
Fixture 1 rgb + intensity
Fixture 2 intensity

In that case, there will be auto release on both working as you assigned the same channels and fixtures on both Cuelist.

Another one

Cuelist 1
Fixture 1 rgb + intensity

Cuelist 2
Fixture 1 rgb + intensity + Pan Tilt

Cuelist 2 will auto release the Cuelist 1, but when running again Cuelist 1, the Cuelist 2 will still be active and controlling the Pan Tilt channel as this last is not part of Cuelist 1.

Keep in mind that in Onyx, FX and Timings are also manage like channel, so take care when building your FX if you don’t want to have trouble (best thing to do is to create a basic preset with all FX and timing values possible, and to always start creating FX from this preset. With that way of working you ensure the right channel consumption and will have a perfect LTP results.


So the channels in a playback cue don’t need to actually change value. They just need to be there. After creating two identical playback buttons, each deactivates the other.


Playback 1 contains

  • Apples | Oranges

Playback 2 contains

  • Apples | Oranges | Bananas

Playback 3 contains

  • Apples | Oranges | Bananas | Grapes


Playback 1 will be deactivated by either 2 or 3.
Playback 2 will be deactivated by only 3.
Playback 3 cannot be deactivated by 1 or 2 because neither contain Grapes, therefore it will remain running, BUT, the values in 1 or 2 will adjust as LTP. Correct?

So when you build a cue list, you’re always needing to think about all of the channels that need to be included in the sequence to ensure they are being recorded where they need to be.

You get it! Congrats

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Playback 1: Apples 100%, Oranges 100%, No bananas.
Playback 2: Apples 50%, Oranges 50%, Bananas 100%.

I activate playback 1.
I activate playback 2 and playback 1 releases.
Now I want to get back to playback 1, but since there are no bananas in playback 1, they remain at 100% and Apples and Oranges return to 100%.

From a programming standpoint, how do I quickly add Bananas to playback 1 at 0% so playback 1 will release playback 2?

Additional question: When is it best to use multiple playback buttons, and when is it best to use a single playback button with multiple cues?

In term of preference, it is up to you, and also how do you feel confortable between running only few playback (multi cues) VS tons of playback (mono cue).

Multi cue, to be on an exact cue, you will ahave to use the pre-select for next go cuelist option, and then can only pre-select the right cue when cuelist is unactive.

I prefer, for majority of stuff, to create dedicated playback instead of multi cue which are, for me, longer to activate and reduce my ability for busking shows.

But I used both, so, experiment both by yourself and you will be able to choose (or not) between both methods.

To add fixture into existing cue, I will let you search inside the documentation (or in video on YouTube) with following keyword: “edit cue”