MMS  (1973 - 1980)
Strand Lighting


MMS

Modular Memory System with 80, 120, 240, 360, 480 channels. 
MMS was the first mass produced memory control and jumped two hurdles in a single stride: it took full advantage of low-priced integrated circuit technology, and dispensed with a rocker switch per channel in favour of a calculator style keypad and wheel, to control up to 480 channels.
The system consisted of self-contained function modules (which could be chosen by the purchaser) linked by a common buss, used singly or in multiples for facilties required. 
Channel control was by a dedicated numerical keyboard including (the now common) THRU, @ and the first use of a digital fader wheel. 
The Mimic module gave above-zero indication for each multiple of 120 channels.
Used Ferrite Core memory.
First in 1973 was for the Birmingham Hippodrome, and the last was in 1979.
A total of 208 MMS desks were sold. 
The desk was replaced by the Galaxy (1980) and later the Gemini (1984) systems. 

Overview:
The Modular Memory System consists of a number of modules, each providing complementary or alternative operational facilities, which all plug into a common digital data link. For 80 up to 360 control channels, with only two module types repeating for each multiple of 120, or less, channels. Virtually any operational facility required to suit the particular needs of each theatre or studio can be incorporated by selection from the many types of module that are now available; these include manual and/or sophisticated timed crossfades, cue-insert, group control, remote control, library storage, and print-out/type-in. All desks include fast, random-access high -density core storage and the Strand fader wheel for match-less intensity modification. 

Active or preview mimic display can be either above-zero indication, or a colour and/or monochrome video display showing precise intensity levels. 

Related Venues:

Story: MMS at the Westminster Theatre

See also:


Documents

First MMS Installation - Birmingham Hippodrome (Bill Wardroper at the desk)
First MMS Installation - Birmingham Hippodrome (Bill Wardroper at the desk) 
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[828kb  JPEG]
From Alan Luxford Collection
First MMS Installation - Birmingham Hippodrome (Bill Wardroper at the desk)
First MMS Installation - Birmingham Hippodrome (Bill Wardroper at the desk) 
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[777kb  JPEG]
From Alan Luxford Collection
MMS at Glyndebourne (Jim Thomas, LX manager)
MMS at Glyndebourne (Jim Thomas, LX manager) 
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[769kb  JPEG]
From Alan Luxford Collection
MMS at the Royal Festival Hall
MMS at the Royal Festival Hall 
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[843kb  JPEG]
From Alan Luxford Collection
MMS at Theatre Royal Drury Lane
MMS at Theatre Royal Drury Lane 
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[866kb  JPEG]
From Alan Luxford Collection
MMS Prototype
MMS Prototype 
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[834kb  JPEG]
From Alan Luxford Collection
MMS Stalls Wing at Glyndebourne
MMS Stalls Wing at Glyndebourne 
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[694kb  JPEG]
From Alan Luxford Collection

MMS Maintenance Handbook (1973)
Warning - this is a very large PDF file, consisting of high quality A3 scans of 100 pages.
[197Mb PDF]
From The NEET Collection

MMS Operators Manual  (May 1974)
Includes mention of difference between MMS and Q-File
[35.7Mb PDF]
From Bob Anderson Collection
Advert: MMS (from Theatre Crafts, January/Feb 1975)
Advert: MMS (from Theatre Crafts, January/Feb 1975) (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[860kb  JPEG]
From Strand Archive
Photo: MMS Installation in Usti Theater, Czech Republic
Photo: MMS Installation in Usti Theater, Czech Republic (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[371kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Photo: Pyongyang Congress Hall complex exterior
Photo: Pyongyang Congress Hall complex exterior (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[268kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Photo: Pyongyang MMS desk in use
Photo: Pyongyang MMS desk in use (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[238kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Photo: Pyongyang MMS desk with venue staff and Bob Hartley.
Photo: Pyongyang MMS desk with venue staff and Bob Hartley. (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[166kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[161kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[178kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation with a watchful eye from the Leader
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation with a watchful eye from the Leader (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[171kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation with protective covers
Photo: Pyongyang MMS Installation with protective covers (1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[178kb  JPEG]
From Bob Hartley Collection
Advert: MMS (from Theatre Crafts, March/April 1975)
Advert: MMS (from Theatre Crafts, March/April 1975) (March 1975)
Click on thumbnail to enlarge
[1Mb  JPEG]
From Strand Archive

MMS Brochure (1976)
[6Mb PDF]
From Jim Laws Collection

1980 Stage Lighting - page 3 (February 1980)
[713kb ]
From Roger Fox Collection

Exhibits in the Backstage Heritage Collection


MMS Modules  
From the Chichester Festival Theatre
From The NEET Collection

Journal Entries for MMS in the Backstage Heritage Collection


Back to Control - Memory (Strand Lighting)