Learning how to operate grandMA3, the world’s industry standard lighting control platform, comes with a steep learning curve. If you’re not coming from grandMA2, that is. However, the journey is absolutely rewarding, since there is an amazing community of grandMA3 operators. MA Lighting and its distributors in general are super approachable and happy to help whenever they can.
The last time I’ve been using MA products was Scancommander back in the days, so when I set out to learn grandMA3 without any grandMA background, I was longing for training resources.
Since you’ve come here, you might find my overview of learning resources helpful.
Without further ado, here is my growing, in no way complete but personally tried and proven list in no particular order:
- MA Lighting University eLearning
This – obviously – should be your first stop. I highly recommend going through all of the material there, even the ones for older software versions. Requires a free login provided by your distributor. Most of the videos or done by MAs Daniel Kannenberg, who is among the best trainers around.
- Lightpower Webinars (German language)
Lightpower GmbH is the grandMA distributor in Germany. They offer a growing list of webinars on basic and advanced topics, including a lot of practical tips from years of production experience. Requires a free login, which expires after a few months of inactivity.
- ACT Lighting Inc. Tech Talk Webinars
I discovered these pretty late in my journey and they are among the best I’ve found anywhere. Aria Hailey, who presents most of the webinars, has years of experience in the industry coming from production companies and theaters and knows grandMA inside out. Just watching her navigating the user interface you learn a ton of shortcuts and practical tips. Having heard that Aria will join forces with Daniel Kannenberg (MA Lighting) keeps me excited for what we might see coming up in 2023. No login required, just enjoy.
- MA Lighting Community
The “official” MA Lighting Community. I got answers to most of my problems within less than a few hours here. Also, MA Lighting and distributors staff is contributing here. Requires free registration.
Veith Schmidts is a well known trainer here in Germany. Through his website he offers a paid online course for around 150 EUR (January 2023) in English. I genuinely enjoyed the video content but didn’t like the “elearning experience” around it (quizzes and stuff). I’d love if Veith would decide to focus on putting out more real-world tips from his amazing experience.
- YouTube Channels
- Christian Jackson
- ACT Entertainment
- Jonathan D. Martin
- Consoletrainer – Cat West Awesome production value and lots of real-world experience. I recommend also watching the grandMA2 tutorials, since a lot of the general concepts apply to grandMA3, too.
- EventLighting365 Tue Knudsen has announced plans to launch a new learning platform. Sign-up to his email list to stay tuned.
- Marco Kampf – Lighting The recording of Marcos ~2 hour long live stream about Phasers is legendary!
- Life.Church AVL Support
- ACT Entertainment
- MA Lighting International
- I recently started my own YouTube channel. Bear with me, I’ve just started.
- Discord Communities
Joining grandMA communities on Discord is a great way of getting connected and getting your questions answered. I am forever grateful for the many, many hours other operators invested in helping me sorting things out. I assume, there might be way more Discord communities and would love to hear from you to add those to my list.
- Christian Jackson grandma-3 channel, also has channels for Capture, Vectorworks and others.
- stage223 More general community with a dedicated ma-lighting channel. German language.
- grandMA3 Forum Server Very active and helpful community. German language.
- EventLighting365 Brought to you by Tue Knudsen, who is also very active on YouTube. This community just launched (as of this writing) and I’m eager to see how it develops.
This concludes my list for now (January 2023).
I plan to keep this post updated. So in case you came across great learning resources, please do let me know and I’ll happily add those. Drop me an email via Ralf Rottmann Lighting.