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About AngryDonkey

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  1. Same here, got an Intel NUC and a Pegasus Astro Ultimate Powerbox which worked out a fair bit cheaper than the Eagle (and works great). Although I have to say that the Eagle looks like a great piece of kit and offers a few more outputs and attachment options which might come in handy (as well as some pre installed software to manage the system and remote into it).
  2. Or do both at the same time! Last year my portable setup reached a degree of (reliable) automation where after setting it up it would happily run until the morning with little help required (only took 2 years to get there ). So now I bought myself a 12 inch Taurus travel dob to enjoy the night sky while the cameras are hoovering up the photons. Very enjoyable!
  3. As mentioned before I'm using the waterproof USB connectors which work well but cost 25 USD for one with a 5m cable. I'm also experimenting with USB to ethernet adapters to be able to increase the distance between camera and computer. These adapter pairs are also not cheap and need additional space but it's easy to run and splice an Ethernet cable.
  4. Sorry don't have any experience with either eyepiece but just bought a Pentax XW 10mm and it works really well with my 12inch dob.
  5. Forgot to add, it looks like basic synchronised dithering will finally be available in SGP 'soon': http://forum.mainsequencesoftware.com/t/once-again-dual-cameras/6778/37
  6. I don't think it does. At least not in a fully automated way. Last time I checked you could run two cameras but not as part of an automated sequence (only if you setup the target manually) which I guess is what everyone is after.
  7. I don't think that's strictly speaking true, it depends on the ascom driver. The Moravian driver for example is written so that you can specify the serial number of the camera in the ascom settings and will allow you to use the same driver for two cameras simultaneously. Other vendors I think provide two identical drivers with different names which can be installed side by side and also let you use two cameras of the same type simultaneously.
  8. No sure if this is related but there is a USB power saving feature in Windows which has caused me some issues in the past. There is a good writeup on how to disable it here: https://www.hamoperator.com/Fusion/FusionFiles/K9EQ-Fusion-PDF-0023.pdf
  9. You can have a look at these two live cameras: https://www.astropage.nl/weather/ https://weather.orionranchobservatory.com/allskyimages/OROAllSkEyeLatest.jpg I don't know of any. I'm not 100% sure but I think Alcor System do all sky cameras that might have ASI ZWO cameras in them (certainly CMOS). They are 2000 USD and upwards though.
  10. For info, AllSkEye Preview is now available for download. The main additions are: A trigger mechanism which allows the execution of actions when certain conditions are met. This can be used to trigger scripts or executable files based on time or weather events e.g. fixed interval, at a certain time of the day, at sunset, when temperature reaches a certain threshold value, etc. Personally I will be using this to control the heater and fan in my all sky camera but the possibilities are endless (and not necessarily restricted to all sky cameras) AllSkEye can now be installer via a Windows installer file Other small changes. Please see download page for details. The preview can be downloaded from https://www.allskeye.com/download/. I would really appreciate any feedback you might have. If you can spare the time, please tell me about it once you've had time to evaluate . A a short forum post in the 'preview Releases' sub-forum would be great https://www.allskeye.com/community/preview-releases/. Thanks! Mike
  11. Great stuff, I am particularly impressed by the water cooling! I'm in a similar position just now where I have to make up my mind if want to install remote focussing or not and am looking at options. Not sure if this could work with your setup but there was someone on the all-sky facebook group who implemented the focus mechanism by rotating the camera and not the lens. This worked well on the ASI camera because you can just screw a threaded rod at the bottom and all it need then is a gear and a motor placed underneath (and a permanent clamping mechanism for the lens). The only downside is that rotating the camera will also rotate the USB cable going to the camera so the adjustment range is limited but apparently it is enough for fine focus. Eventually my camera will be remote hosted so I won't be able to tinker with it if things go wrong so for me it's really a toss up between the ability to remote focus vs the extra complexity of the focus mechanism which might cause issues in itself.... Never easy ?
  12. I'm always on the lookout for better programs! How is it on automation? Can it run a full sequence from start to finish (including plate solve, focussing, meridian flip etc.)? Thanks!
  13. Of course! But then I am biased ? If you go for the Oculus then AllSkEye is definitely your best bet (I originally wrote it for the Oculus although now it supports all ASCOM cameras and also natively ASI ZWO cameras). AllSkEye is very feature rich and has lots of extras but it only runs on Windows so you would need to factor that in e.g. availability of a Windows machine, location, USB cable length limits etc. I've not tried a cooled camera for all sky images but personally I don't think the extra cost will be worth it (and you would also need to factor in having to get rid of all the heat in the housing that's being generated by the cooler). AllSkEye has a bad pixel map feature which usually manages to clean up the image of any hot pixel. One main thing to consider is the camera / lens combination as this will determine how much of the sky you will be able to see. In terms of the camera the resolution is obviously the main consideration in terms of image quality but the sensor shape also plays a role i.e. a more square (squarer?) sensor will normally work better for all sky as the all sky image should be a circle. Most people are usually aiming for a full 180 degree image, this can for example be achieved with an ASI 178MC and a 1.4mm Fujinon lens. Personally I actually prefer not to get the full 180 degree view but am usually aiming for 150 degrees. This way a bit of the horizon is cut off but I can fill the entire rectangle of the sensor and a lot of the stray light from houses etc. it also cut down. I guess it's a matter of personal taste.
  14. 'Ready made' probably yes. To be honest there isnt really much of a choice... If you are up for a bit of diy then I would go for something like an ASI178MC with a good Fujinon lens. You can get domes and heating elements easy enough but you would have to create a waterproof housing of some sort. There are some good designs around if you Google it. A 3d printer helps but it can also be done with piping or boxes. You would certainly get better image quality (and colour).
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