It doesn’t matter whether you’re performing in a band, you’re solo on stage or smashing out your highly anticipated DJ set when you’re standing in front of a live audience, they’ve come for the unforgettable experience that you’re providing.
While the music that you’re creating counts for a huge part of this, other elements of your performance, such as sound checks, speaker quality and, perhaps most importantly, your lighting setup, all come together to create a complete set. It should go without saying that the lighting setup for your performance is just as important as the sounds itself.
After all, imagine a set without them?
However, when you’re performing in a venue, of course, they are going to be able to provide with their lighting setup, but at the end of the day, you’re only limited to what their software can achieve.
With this in mind, when you bring your own lighting software, commonly known as DMX lighting software, you’ll have the ability to take your performances to the next level.
Since it can take years of experience to master how to produce and manage a professional lighting show, technology has provided us with affordable software that comes with intelligent software that can take control on our behalf.
With the right piece of software, you can mix the control that the software has with your own manual touches that come together to create a show that your audience will think is simply out of this world.
But, as with everything in life, you’re going to need the right tools for the job.
We’ve searched far and wide, looking for the best DMX lighting software packages that not provide you with an array of built-in patterns and complex sequences, but also give you an element of control, whether that’s creating your own patterns, adding professional plugins or adding in new features and lighting fixtures.
Out of all the packages we explored, we’ve managed to narrow down our selection to just four of the very best that is available today. So, let’s jump straight in and see what we’ve got.
Madrix Software Key Basic V3.X – 16 Universes 8192 DMX Channels
To start off this list of best DMX lighting software, we’ve chosen this simply outstanding suite that is easily one of the most professional and capable software packages in the industry. Quite simply, this is what the professionals use, and although this is by far the most expensive suite on this list, this is the only software package you’re ever going to have to buy.
While this edition of the software offers 16 digital universes for you to use to create your own lighting shows, here’s an example of what their newest tests of a 22-universe suite can produce.
Wow. Madrix can be used as a standalone software package, or it can be used to seamlessly integrate into your existing DMX/MIDI controller, meaning you can have full control of your lighting setup as you’re performing, as well as running any pre-set patterns and sequences you may have created.
Unfortunately, this version of the software isn’t compatible with Mac computers, but it has been tirelessly optimized to provide you a superior user experience if you’re running it on a Windows computer.
With a ton of effects generators built into the software itself and universal compatibility with all hardware brands and manufacturers, it doesn’t matter whether you’re linking to your own lighting rig or a venue’s, you can guarantee that you’ll have complete control when producing some out-of-this-world effects.
- Industry leading software including DMX512, Art-Net, Streaming CAN, Philips Color Kinetics, etc.
- Seamless and premium-quality user experience
- Works standalone or with other DMX/MIDI controllers
- 16 lighting channels to control
- Not compatible with Mac operating systems
- Expensive professional price tag
Blizzard Lighting EclipseDMX Controlling Software
If you’re looking for a software package that comes to a much more affordable price tag but still packs a ton of features and an incredibly easy to use and learn user interface, Blizzard has provided the optimal solution for you.
Again, this software is Windows-based only and won’t work with Mac computers, but the experience you’ll have on a Windows computer is fluid and basically effortless. This means you’ll be able to create stunning, high-quality light shows with just your mouse and keyboard. It’s also compatible with both 32 and 64-bit versions.
What really sets the Blizzard software package apart is the fact that it’s made for beginners and novices to the light show world. It’s quick to learn, incredibly fun to play around with and even comes with a built-in 3D visualizer.
This means you’ll be able to see what your light show is going to look like from within the software, without having to get all your equipment out.
With each purchase of the software, you’ll also find the Eclipse dongle with is designed to plug straight into your computer system and then into your lighting rig, so you can start controlling your light show the moment you turn everything on. It really is that simple.
Coming in with a very affordable price tag, over 30 pre-programmed scanners, another 30 pre-programmed effects and patterns and over 1,000 hardware profiles to choose from, this is the perfect choice for those looking to get a fast and easy DMX software solution.
- Over 1,000 hardware profiles built-in and ready to go
- Plug in and Play technology
- 30 pre-programmed color effects
- Built-in 3D room visualizer
- Not compatible with Mac operating systems
- May not have all the features a professional requires
Enttec DMXIS 70570 USB Controller & Software
When you require a DMX lighting software package that runs effortlessly and optimally on both Windows and Mac operating systems, comes with everything you need to provide the best experience during your performances and sits with one of the most affordable price tags in the industry, the Enttec DMXIS 70570 is your best choice.
Not only do you have access to all the essential compatibility features above, but you’ll also be provided with access to over 512 channels (universes) of control. That’s 512 different lights you can control at the same time. It’s safe to say that’s more than enough channels to put on an unforgettable show.
Each purchase comes with both operating system version which runs an incredibly reliable and incredibly powerful microprocessor that helps you manage and control your setups. You can run this software as a standalone package, as a VST plugin in your virtual software or even as an Audio Unit plugin, whatever works best for you.
You’ll also find a rather unique ¼-inch footswitch which can help you change the scene of your lighting setup with the simple press of your foot. The intelligent lighting system built into this software means you’ll be able to control all kinds of lighting hardware and there’s a ton of built-in integrated sequences such as strobe, lasers, walkers, static effects and more to get you started.
All in all, while remaining one of the most affordable packages, it’s also one of the most fully featured, giving you full control of your manual settings, or simply hitting the Automatic settings to sync it to the tempo of your music.
- Compatible with both Mac and Windows operating systems
- ¼-inch footswitch for easy scene switching
- Highly compatible with all kinds of lighting hardware and devices
- Superior 512 channels of control at your disposal
Basic Class Sunlite Suite 2 DMX USB Lighting Interface Controller
To conclude our list, we’ve chosen this affordable, mid-range DMX controller software bundle that comes with both the rig plugin and the software you need to light up your performances in a way that guarantees to capture our audience’s attention from start to finish.
This USB package means you can simply plug it into your computer, whether that’s a Mac or Windows operating system, and you can plug in, and you’ll be ready to go. You’ll also have to install the included software which provides you with an outstanding range of features.
These features include the unique Pages concept, which means you’ll be able to effortlessly browse through the available features and sequences with just a few clicks of the button. Want more control over the lighting patterns? Simply click to enter the edit mode to manage every second of your performance completely.
There’s also the integrated timeline feature so you can easily look over your entire performance to see which pieces of hardware are being used at what time and there’s compatibility with the free Easy Remote app, so you can make quick changes on the fly from your smartphone or tablet device.
As you can see, this is a software package that prides itself on giving you the maximum level of control in your lighting sequences, coming together with your sounds to help your performances come to life.
- Easy Remote app available on your smartphone or tablet
- Affordably priced DMX lighting solution
- Can be used standalone, with MIDI controller or VST plugin
- Compatible with both Mac and Windows computers
- May require a bit of time to learn how to use
When it comes to creating a live performance that your audience will never forget, the lighting shows you put on is just as important as the sounds themselves. With any of the DMX lighting software packages listed above, you’ll know that you have the right tools for the job by your side for many years to come.