the definitive Grafik Eye master thread!! - Page 4 - AVS | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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Dedicated Theater Design & Construction > the definitive Grafik Eye master thread!!
DMF's Avatar DMF 04:32 PM 09-12-2005
Lutron Tech assures me that the Grafik RA control units are identical to the 3500 series Grafik Eye control units, except with a RF receiver. They even retain IR receiver and are programmable through the GRX-PRG module.

RA-GRX-6... is the equivalent of the GRX-IA-6... (a.k.a. GRX-3506...). MSRP is about $1250, not too much more than the 3506.

There is an interface between RadioRA and existing Grafik Eye - RA-GRXI-.. - that may accomplish the same thing. Anyone used one?

audiblesolutions's Avatar audiblesolutions 12:44 AM 09-14-2005
You only need to address a GE if more than one is in the system. If there is but one GE you do not need to assign it a number to address an accessary control.

I have used the GE Radio Ra Interface. Once upon a time it was the only way to add a GE to a Radio Ra system. Moreover, each GE, despite the fact that it can control up to 6 loads is considered one device on a Radio Ra system. Considering that you can only have 32 dimmers on a Radio Ra system this can be a convenient back door to controlling more loads then one might think. I just cannot understand what you wish to accomplish with the RA-GRXI.

I would never connect a motor to a GE. Inductive loads and triacs do not mix. You could use the GE to throw the coil on a relay which controls the shade/drape motor. Or you could use the accessary relay boxes like the GRX-AV.

DMF's Avatar DMF 01:35 PM 09-14-2005
Originally Posted by audiblesolutions View Post

I just cannot understand what you wish to accomplish with the RA-GRXI.

The GE is behind the seating. I can install an IR pickup like GRX-CIR in front of the seating for use with the universal remote. Or I can introduce RadioRA to accomplish the same thing using an RF remote. RadioRA also lets me add some of the features of a whole-home system like drive-up activation.

Unfortunately, it looks like the RA-GRXI wants to occupy a box in the living space rather than in the attic with the rest of the GE accessory controls - 104°F max temp. The RA-GRX-n doesn't have that problem. Can you confirm that the RA-GRX-n is otherwise equivalent to (GRX-IA + RA-GRXI)?
emillika's Avatar emillika 02:22 PM 09-17-2005
Hi All!

I have a 3106 (GRX-MR-6) and a GRX-rs232 that I am trying to send some rs232 commands from my laptop. I see LED1 on the GRX-232 is blinking and not solid. Might this mean I don't have sufficient power? I don't have a mulit-meter handy.

EDIT: I addressed the unit with address A1 and now when I change scenes on the GE I see the result in Hyper Terminal. I can not yet figure out what format to send commands from Hyper Terminal. Any advice?

EDIT2: I had flow control set to Hardware. Once I turned this off I was able to control the GE from Hyper Term.
DMF's Avatar DMF 10:24 AM 09-18-2005
Right. The Lutron RS-232 cable that comes with the accessories does wire DTR/CTS, but the unit never uses them. If your port does it will wait forever.
dell4200gambler's Avatar dell4200gambler 09:17 PM 10-09-2005
I'm having a devil of a time finding a masonry box locally - lowes, home depot, menards, nobody seems to have one anywhere near as deep as what is recommended in the thread (3.5"). Can anyone recommend an online retailer as I haven't found a hit online either....
Stima's Avatar Stima 09:22 PM 10-09-2005
I had the same trouble as you. My suggestion is to look up a local Electrical supplier such as Grainger. I found a nice 4gang heavy duty metal (very deep) box for 22$ and talked him down to 15$. Still expensive, but was the best I could do. If you can't find anyone local, I would be happy to stop by that shop and pick one up for you. Just email me. stima at
DMF's Avatar DMF 10:42 AM 10-10-2005
The first hit googling 'Raco masonry box' found the Raco 698.

I got mine at a local electrical supply house.
cinemascope's Avatar cinemascope 06:59 PM 10-10-2005
Call your local electrical supply house to see if they carry RACO 3.5" deep masonry boxes, and also to see if they allow walk-in cash sales at the counter.

Some places are trade only, so double check if they allow walk-in cash sales.
dell4200gambler's Avatar dell4200gambler 09:14 PM 10-10-2005
Thanks for the info guys. Stima, thanks for the offer. DMF, no idea how I missed that when I googled, guess I checked hits 2 through 999 which had nothing to do with a masonry box! :-) Cinemascope and all, I called a few supply houses and finally gave up and went with googled hit number one. Now I can move on to more pressing duties (like figuring out how to integrate this grafik eye with my htpc's)! :-)
emillika's Avatar emillika 09:40 PM 10-10-2005
dell4200gambler... not sure if you are using a frontend on your HTPC yet but Dean from Charmed Quark has a driver for the GE rs232 controller written that works quite well.
dell4200gambler's Avatar dell4200gambler 09:57 PM 10-10-2005
emillika, tell me more. I saw a post early on in this thread about controlling the GE with an HTPC but haven't found any detailed info yet (to busy with construction of the HT at the moment I guess). I assume at a minimum the rs-232 controller is required. Some pricey specialized software on top of that as well? A bear to configure and maintain? Thanks in advance!
DMF's Avatar DMF 11:58 PM 10-10-2005
GRX-RS232 doesn't do much except change the zone dimmer levels. You need GRX-PRG for PC control. Be prepared to spend the cost of a laptop for it.
dell4200gambler's Avatar dell4200gambler 08:47 AM 10-21-2005
Finally received my masonry box and got it mounted, now I'm trying to settle on a GE. Can someone give me a quick breakdown on what the 3504 gives me over the 3104? Do I get PC control with this one or would it still require the GRX-PRG? Thanks in advance.
cinemascope's Avatar cinemascope 12:38 PM 10-21-2005
Taken from page 1 of this thread...

The 3500 series is programmable with 1% resolution in dimming steps, vs. @6-7% steps on the 2400 and 3100 series.

The same advanced IR control as the 3100 series, except the raise and lower have more steps in the resolution.

The 3500 series adds the capability of using the RS-232 interfaces which adds real time feedback to a control system as well as direct communication dimming w/out establishing presets. (ie: directly dimming one load only to modify an existing scene)

As DMF learned, the GRX-232 (and presumably the GRX-PRG) will also work with the 3100 series through the MUX link, but it only duplicates the IR features.

You will still need a GRX-232 or a GRX-PRG to control ANY Grafik Eye from your PC.
The 3500 series just has more control.
DMF's Avatar DMF 09:01 PM 10-23-2005
Haven't tried the -PRG with a 3100, but since the 3100 only understands the command set of the -RS232, there's really not much point.

As I've said before here, I don't see that the -RS232 has much use in a home environment. It doesn't allow you to 'program' the GE as you might understand it (and Lutron's Liaison s/w doesn't work with it).

So leaving out the -RS232, here's the equation: If you don't plan on programming the GE, then a 3100 is fine. If you do, then a 3500 is required (for about an extra $100 street), but you will also have to spend about the same again for a -PRG to go with it.
bgarner's Avatar bgarner 09:38 PM 10-26-2005
Good day,

I currently am setting up the Grafik Eye 3100 MR 4-zone controller with the accessory dimmer NT-GRX-1S. The Grafix Eye seems to work fine, but when I attach the accessory dimmer, it is not working. I had my electrician set it up, but it seems that he is confused with the whole thing.

Basically, when I press the accessory button, it saves the current configuration under Scene 1. It doesn't load or shut off Scene 1, which is wierd. I read this thread and it seems that no one else has run into this problem. Also, although this home is rather new, I can't rewire it, so I have to use something that works with retrofit wiring. Where the accessory dimmer is installed, there are 3 wires, Black, White, Red, yet the accessory dimmer only has Black and Blue.

Can someone offer any guidance on what we may be doing wrong? I looked at the instructions that came with the unit and the instructions I was able to download from Lutron, and both are different, yet confusing. They seem to show the accessory dimmer connecting to a 2 way switch in both instances and also they show it using the SSA connection on the actual dimmer.

Any help is appreciated.

cinemascope's Avatar cinemascope 01:21 AM 10-27-2005
Originally Posted by bgarner View Post

Where the accessory dimmer is installed, there are 3 wires, Black, White, Red, yet the accessory dimmer only has Black and Blue.

Can someone offer any guidance on what we may be doing wrong? I looked at the instructions that came with the unit and the instructions I was able to download from Lutron, and both are different, yet confusing.

Follow these instructions, and remember the series of your GRX.
GRX-3100 would be the same as a GRX-MR.

This device was INTENDED to be used in retrofits in the instance where a secondary location was wired for 3-way control to traditional switches.

This is supposed to work for exatly what you have...

As far as the multiple instructions, you may have seen the other diagram for the 4000 series, which has dedicated SSA in and out terminals so you do not have to tie to the hot lead.

Use the diagram at the top of page 3 of this document.


They seem to show the accessory dimmer connecting to a 2 way switch in both instances and also they show it using the SSA connection on the actual dimmer.

Any help is appreciated.


What?? I don't know what the "2-way switch" reference is about...

The fact that is does SOMETHING would lead me to believe that it is hooked up ciorrectly, but PLEASE RE-CHECK THE WIRING.

If there is a wiring problem, I would bet that you are somehow mis-using the carrier for the 3-way circuit that was already wired between your boxes.

Turn off the power to the circuit and do some continuity testing to verify that the wires you are using are what you think they are.

Even though I would like you and/or the electrician to double check your wiring anyway, it sounds like the GRX may be in programming mode while you are trying to operate it.
bgarner's Avatar bgarner 07:10 AM 10-27-2005
Good day Cinemascipe,

Thanks for the tip. As you suggested I looked at the .pdf link that you sent, checked my wiring and changed the blue wire to tie into the SSA connection. Now everything works fine. Part of the problem is that my electrician doesn't seem to be the sharpest pencil in the pack, and couldn't understand the instructions at all.

Again, thanks for your help!
cinemascope's Avatar cinemascope 11:50 AM 10-27-2005
You are welcome, that is why I post here.

Just curious, but what WAS it conected to??
Philip100's Avatar Philip100 04:29 PM 11-05-2005
This is a wonderful thread....however, we plan to install the above lighting control system. Is there a similar thread on AVS which provides great info on RadioRA?

DMF's Avatar DMF 06:30 PM 11-07-2005
cinemascope's Avatar cinemascope 10:27 PM 11-09-2005
There have been some good threads on Radio Ra in the automation forum.

Try some searches for Lutron to see them, and post any additional Ra questions there...
A lot of the people who created and contributed to this thread watch that section as well.
ScottJ0007's Avatar ScottJ0007 01:16 AM 11-20-2005
I have a wiring question...

Due to local code requirements, I am going to have to add a power booster interface (NGRX-PB) to my Grafik Eye. Regardless of actual load, my city will only allow eight fixtures on a 15 amp circuit or ten fixtures on a 20 amp circuit. Every outlet, light socket, recessed light can, etc. counts as a fixture. Since I will have nine recessed lights cans and 4 sconces on my Grafik Eye, this puts me over the 10 fixture limit so I am going to put one of the zones on a power booster.

I'm using the two-box wiring method. I've used the original diagram posted by V10EATR and made some modifications to his drawing to show how I plan to wire the power interface. Can someone who has done this before verify that my drawing looks correct?
DMF's Avatar DMF 11:17 AM 12-12-2005
Looks good to me.
ebr's Avatar ebr 10:00 PM 01-11-2006
I just discovered that the recessed can housings I purchased for my new room have electronic transformers in them. Is it true that I will need an ELVI to connect them to my Grafik Eye 3106? If so, do I need a separate ELVI for each zone that is connected to these types of lights?

Thanks for any help.

[Edit] Nevermind. I called the Lutron hotline (which, I was very impressed with BTW - got a very nice and helpful person at midnight no less) and they told me I probably will need the ELVI. Unfortunately, that is probably more expensive than buying new cans so I may just need to switch them out.

Do any of you people that have the standard 4" type cans have problems with the lights buzzing or humming when you dim them?
cinemascope's Avatar cinemascope 09:39 PM 01-12-2006
The standard 4" cans that are easiest to integrate with GrafikEyes are line voltage models rated for use with 120VAC PAR20 or PAR16 50W reflectorized halogen lights... no transformers needed and no special dimmers or modules are needed...

Also, 120VAC halogens are a great choice because they keep a consistent color when dimmed, vs. incandescent lighting which will appear more and more yellowish color the more they are dimmed. Color temperature of the lighting at it's dimmed levels is very important when watching a high performance projection system.

This occurs because the filament in an incandescent bulb does not have enough time to fully illuminate when the bulb is turned off hundreds of times per second by the dimmer.
ebr's Avatar ebr 06:58 AM 01-13-2006
Does anyone know how the light output of a 4" PAR20 halogen compares to that of the MR16 halogens?

Seven MR16 50 watters lit up my last room like a football stadium, but I've seen posts that imply the 4" cans don't do as good of a job...
Tweakophyte's Avatar Tweakophyte 08:47 AM 01-13-2006
Originally Posted by ebr View Post

Do any of you people that have the standard 4" type cans have problems with the lights buzzing or humming when you dim them?

I have 6- 130v bulbs in my cans and do not have any problems with buzzing. I believe the 130V bulbs have a thicker filament in them. On the other hand, the bulbs I have in my sconces can be moody at times. These are 60W Phillips bulbs that have the "natural light". I've had more sucess with them than then GE version. When I buy bulbs I shake them and listen to the filament. If it jingles it will hum when dimmed.

PS Yes, that was me with my ear to the bulbs in the lighting section of HT
ebr's Avatar ebr 09:39 AM 01-13-2006
Good to hear, Tweak. Thanks.

What type of bulb are you using in the cans? Par 20, Par 30, what?
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