Blinder light craps out laptop on separate circuit, help!

Randy Pence

Freshman
Oct 25, 2011
93
0
6
Berlin, Germany
I have an odd problem. A bank of flood lights (i believe they were originally used to patrol part of the berlin wall) has been repurposed as a blinder for a club install. There are 4 sections of 10 serial strung 23v bulbs powered by 3 phase 16A 230v and relay triggered. A problem which cropped up is that the desktop pc which runs the dmx software for the rest of the dancefloor acts up when the blinders are either engaged for too long or too often (a giant red button triggers the relay). It does not crash (no windows rebooting), but usb devices stop working and the software can become unresponsive. That would almost be tolerable, but a single push of the button once caused a performers laptop to freeze. Audio, lighting, and the blinder are all on separate circuits, but tied together in the same panel. a passive transformer isolates the audio mixer output which feeds sound to light capability of the lighting software, as there is a ground loop without it.

the electrical work looks seemingly first rate, no hack job stuff.

My only guesses are that the relay or distro for the blinder is either backfeeding voltage or emitting emf

Out of safety concerns, I leave the distros panel breakers down for now. The in-house electrician will look at it soon, but do any of you have any ideas? thx
 

Silas Pradetto

Graduate Student
Re: Blinder light craps out laptop on separate circuit, help!

USB crashes when it goes over current or over voltage. Try shoving a paperclip in your USB port. Windows will report "surge on whatever port" and shut down the USB ports to prevent damage. I'm definitely going to agree that you're getting voltage somewhere it's not wanted, probably on the ground.
 

Randy Pence

Freshman
Oct 25, 2011
93
0
6
Berlin, Germany
Re: Blinder light craps out laptop on separate circuit, help!

USB crashes when it goes over current or over voltage. Try shoving a paperclip in your USB port. Windows will report "surge on whatever port" and shut down the USB ports to prevent damage. I'm definitely going to agree that you're getting voltage somewhere it's not wanted, probably on the ground.
The performer was using a usb sound card, so this could make sense for the horrible noise on his channel when this happened.

a possible related issue is that some architectural fluorescent and led lighting has also randomly cut out. I'm sure the electrician will check out hte ground, but thx for the idea.
 
Jan 13, 2011
259
0
16
Glasgow UK
Re: Blinder light craps out laptop on separate circuit, help!

I wonder if there is a bad neutral somewhere on the incoming supply and tere is a voltage drop or current on the earth from a tied neutral incommer G
 

Randy Pence

Freshman
Oct 25, 2011
93
0
6
Berlin, Germany
Re: Blinder light craps out laptop on separate circuit, help!

I wonder if there is a bad neutral somewhere on the incoming supply and tere is a voltage drop or current on the earth from a tied neutral incommer G

it was fixed for a while, but the issue is starting to come back. grr. unfortunately, i was not the one in contact with the electrician, so i do not have the information as to what was done.