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Ryohei56

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About Ryohei56

  • Rank
    Nebula

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Interests
    Astrophotography, flying quadcopters, local/family history, hillwalking,
  • Location
    Glenrothes, Fife UK
  1. I recently acquired a SkyPortal through Amazon UK, after doing a fair bit of research. Initial impressions are fairly good - the device is simplicity itself to install, and wifi connection was instant. Mine is fitted to a NexStar 6SE, with SkyPortal installed on my Android phone. Setting up was slightly bumpy, as I found by trial and error that not all of the possible setup methods worked with my kit. However, one did work, so that's all I needed. There was also the occasional wifi dropoff, but I understand from Prof. Google that this may be due to the phone kicking me off if the screensaver closes the display. Suggested solutions here involve disabling certain memory/battery saver apps which could be causing this issue. next time I'm out I'll try disabling one app at a time to try & identify the culprit. I don't see this as a big issue, just something I need to look at. Anyway, with the wifi running let's proceed to the alignment process. This is a three-star alignment (you can use planets if available), requiring you to centre an object in your spotterscope, then centre it in your observing eyepiece to align the scope (repeat for each of three objects). I used Vega, Capella and Mars, and the app reported a successful alignment. I then tried selecting various objects and getting the scope to track into position. The results were fairly accurate, though I think I need to tweak my Telrad spotter slightly to improve performance. My only "con" is that it doesn't track objects (for example to take long exposures of DSO's) but I tend to restrict my astrophotography to the Moon and planets, so I'm not that bothered. As I use video capture anyway, I suspect that a quick tap of the centring button will keep objects in view for sufficient time to grab loads of frames for processing. One last thing - I find it easier to use the handset to move the scope in the alignment process. Just saying... Alan S.
  2. I've just been in touch with the company that makes SkyFi III. My question to them concerned the type of cable I needed to connect the unit to my Celestron Nexstar SE. In the Celestron manual, there is a diagram of the hand controller, and the single port on its base is clearly labelled as an RS 232 port. In the QuickStart Guide that comes with the SkyFi, there are notes to the effect that if you have a Celestron with a NexStar controller, it is vital to connect the SkyFi to the RS 232 port on the handset (as opposed to any other port on the mount or elsewhere). The SkyFi itself has three ports, one being an RS232, but there is also a micro usb and a third I'm not sure about (see the first pic attached) So far, so good. However......... Despite what the SkyFi's own manual would suggest (and what the Celestron manual indicates), a Celestron Nexstar SE scope does NOT have an RS 232 on its base, in fact it has a mini USB. While the SkyFI does have an RS 232 sport, it also has a micro USB port, and it's THIS that you use., according to the reply I got from the manufacturer. They recommended a spcific lead type, with a micro usb at one end and a mini usb at the other, which I now have. Lead connected, SkySafari app installed on my phone and the app speaks to the SkyFi. So far, so good. However......... In my phone settings menu, I selected the SkyFi's own wi-fi source. Checked that the scopr and SkyFi were all powered up, and selected "Connect" on the SkySafari menu. The app thought about it for a while, then stated that it could not establish a connection. I should check that the scope was powered on (it was) and that I had the correct wi-fi. When I went back into my phone settings, I could see that the phone had reverted to our home wi-fi. On repeating the exercise, I spotted a message on my phone which said that "this wi-fi cannot access the internet" -it gave me the option to Switch or Cancel. Pressing Switch moved me to our home wi-fi as before, Cancel just dropped me out of the loop. Now, as far as I can see, I don't need internet access to use SkyFi, but maybe I'm missing something. I appreciate there is an element of non-astronomy-related issues here, but I'm hoping somebody on this forum has had similar issues with SkiFi and can offer some suggestions. Thanks in advance Alan Stewart
  3. I've just been in touch with the company that makes SkyFi III. My question to them concerned the type of cable I needed to connect the unit to my Celestron Nexstar SE. In the Celestron manual, there is a diagram of the hand controller, and the single port on its base is clearly labelled as an RS 232 port. In the QuickStart Guide that comes with the SkyFi, there are notes to the effect that if you have a Celestron with a NexStar controller, it is vital to connect the SkyFi to the RS 232 port on the handset (as opposed to any other port on the mount or elsewhere). The SkyFi itself has three ports, one being an RS232, but there is also a micro usb and a third I'm not sure about (see the first pic attached) So far, so good. However......... The port on the base of the controller is NOT an RS 232, it is in fact a mini USB (see the second pic attached). Simulation Curriculum (who make the SkyFi III) say that you can connect the micro usb on the SkyFi to the mini usb on the controller. This is at variance to what their own QuickStart Guide says, but I rather suspect that when the guide was written up, the author had a look at the Celestron manual and didn't bother to check the accuracy of the port information in it. I've ordered a micro to mini cable, which is due to arrive on Saturday 10th. If anyone is interested, I'll report back on how everything works out. Alan S.
  4. I should also have asked - is there anything I should know about disassembling the power tank? There seem to be several screws but it looks as if I might have to take the torch head off as well.
  5. Thank you to all who replied. I guess it's RIP old battery, install new battery. Alan S.
  6. Hi. For reasons beyond my control, my rechargeable power tank was left unattended for several months, and now appears to be dead. I tried connecting the charger unit that came with it, but this produced no response. I then borrowed a standard car battery charger, hooked it up to the power tank and tried again. This time, the radio and white light torch functioned, but not the red light. The top two LEDs on the side panel were flickering, and the white light seemed to flicker with the same frequency. Altering the battery charger setting to Trickle Charge slowed the flickering, changing it back to Normal charging speeded up the flickering. The tank was left connected to the charger for about twelve hours. On removing the charger, all the tank's functions stopped, and no LEDs showed. I've read about a deep cycle charger as a possible solution, but whether or not that might succeed - given what I've described - I don't know. Would a car repair shop (like Kwikfit) have such a thing? If not, where might I find one? If the tank - or rather its cell - is beyond resurrection, how can I obtain a replacement? Would replacing it be a specialist task, or is it something I could do, assuming I can obtain a replacement cell? Thanks in advance Alan Stewart
  7. Thank you to all who replied. Some highly technical info there, which I shall need time to digest. I'm sure it will benefit me, and I do appreciate the help you''ve kindly offered.
  8. Hi. I was imaging the Moon last night, but the results were a bit less than satisfying. My equipment consists of a Celestron Nexstar 6SE and a Celestron Neximage 5 camera. A 2x Barlow was also fitted. Processing is done with Registax and Photoshop. Now, as far as I can tell, the focussing was spot on, but due to a bit of a breeze it was near-impossible to keep the scope totally stationary at all ties. I had the scope using the lunar tracking rate, which helped keep things in the field of view long enough for me to get video clips, but none were particularly sharp. I suspect that either the scope's wobble caused by wind will not have helped, but I also wondered whether the magnification involved was higher than my scope can reasonably cope with. I've seen online calculators, but they all seem to assume an eyepiece is used and not a webcam. Is it possible to check the total magnification, assuming a 6SE, 2x Barlow and Neximage 5? I'd really appreciate any thoughts or suggestions Alan Stewart
  9. All is now good. I was advised to locate and install a USB driver, which I got from TIS. Installed it, rebooted, and the Neximage was up & running properly.
  10. Not sure. I'm on the road just now but I can check tonight.
  11. Funny thing - I now have iCap, Sharpcap and Firecapture loaded, and none work. They all crash, all recognise there's a camera there but can't start it. I sent a log report on Firecapture to its German author & he's given me an idea which I'll try today. Incidentally the log mentioned a file it couldn't find, and that same file got a mention in the Sharpcap crash report. Should it really be this hard to set up?
  12. No, I hadn't even thought of trying other software - but I will now! I mostly do lunar imaging, though I am aiming to try planetary imaging soon. Is there much difference between the two capture programs you mentioned? Thanks for such a swift response Alan
  13. Hi there. I finally decided to replace my old Orion Starshoot with a nice new Neximage 5, and at the same time got a laptop sporting Windows 10. The camera came with iCap software, version 2.2, and installation proceeded without incident. I got to the point where iCap was recognising the camera, but when I clicked on 'OK' iCap stopped almost immediately, at which point an error message came up announcing that iCap had closed and Windows was (allegedly) looking for a solution. I repeated the 'launch' exercise several times, always with the same result. It's really frustrating, as I just can't get on with imaging at all. Does anyone have an idea what I could try to get my Neximage up & running properly? Thanks Alan Stewart
  14. Hi there. I''m looking at replacing an ageing reflector, and have kind of settled on the Nexstar5SE, which is within my budget. I was wondering if anyone on here had used it for astrophotography and - if so - whether they had any images of the Moon/planets that I could view? I would really like to see what this scope is capable of before jumping. I should mention that I use a Canon 400D and an Orion Starshoot for my imaging, and I'm comfortable with Registax, but I would still like to see what others have achieved with the 5SE so I can get an idea of what I might be able to get.
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