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TinyGravitas

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About TinyGravitas

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    Vacuum

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    UK
  1. That was my thought too. I think it also represents a reduction in costs for them. The chips on the new board are much more modern, faster and extremely cheap. They are using the stm32 arm chip which is the same one OnStep uses. They are cheap as chips and relatively reliable. Plus the board is single sided which will also help to reduce costs. I’m very curious to see if we will start seeing this board in newly bought scopes in the coming months. The only weird thing for me is the lack of Skywatcher or Synscan branding on it.
  2. So for anyone waiting on the answer for this with bated breath! The answer is YES! The board does appear to work, and does appear to mimic things pretty precisely. The replacement was straight forward and pretty easy to handle, the connectors actually feel stronger and more secure than the original board I pulled out. The steppers definitely seem to have a slightly different tone to them but other than that it works fine. I haven't done any observations with this yet, but I'll report my findings back into this thread the next clear night I get. There's another advantage with this board, which is the price, as it comes in at a little over £100 instead of the nearly £150 you sometimes end up paying for the older skywatcher board. If anyone comes across this thread who has a new skywatcher I would be intrigued to find out if this board is a knockoff, or just a newer style board that Skywatcher are now using for their EQ5 Mounts.
  3. So, first up, a TL;DR: I bought a new mainboard for my HEQ5 Pro after it blew. And the board that arrived doesn't look ANYTHING like any other board I've seen for the HEQ5 Pro. Now the long version. In the early part of the week I was running some tests with some new equipment and everything was going great. Right up until the point where I was slewing to M31 and suddenly everything connected to my laptop disconnected for a few moments. My camera came back up, but the mount did not. After some investigation with swapping from my EQDIRECT lead to the handset and back a few times it seemed to be terminal. I disassembled my head and pulled out my mainboard, I then ran through with some advice about changing the two 470uF caps on there which I did and still nothing. So it's proper fried. I discovered the culprit in the end. I had a series of flying leads on the new power supply I bought and it turns out the positive centre of the 12V connectors sit slightly proud so I'm theorising that it touched with the legs of the telescope or with the negative of one of the flying leads and caused a short that blew the board. So I decided to order a new mainboard: https://www.microglobe.co.uk/sky-watcher-motherboard-for-heq5-pro-p-15281.html Whilst that was coming I built myself a little power distrubution box to avoid this happening in future, something would have to go REALLY wrong for something to make a bad connection now. And so today the board arrived. Except it's not like any other HEQ Pro board I've ever seen. And it's nothing like the picture on their website. I also can't find the board anywhere online. So here below you can see the old Synscan Rev2 board I blew up and took out, ignore the two poorly soldered Caps in the bottom right. And here you can see the new board that was shipped to me today. The weird thing is that everything that should be there, is there. They have swapped out the controllers and moved a lot of the components from the back to the front, but there appears to be everything here, plus some extra? They have swapped the PIC micros out for that ARM up at the top, and it's all a little bizare. No matter how much I search for this board I can't find any details on it and I'm wondering if it's some kind of knockoff? Anyway, I don't have much to lose by trying it out. I doubt it could do much damage to my steppers or my hookup board so really it only risks blowing itself. So I'll plug it in later and see what I get? I'll be sure to make sure that the hand controller portion of it is only putting out 12v and only down the correct pins, but who knows? At least the board is more compact.
  4. Hi there! I go by Tiny! It's nice to meet you all! I have been doing some light astrophotography for about 5 years now, although that includes a 2 year break during which my living situation didn't really make it easy to get my scope out! But now I'm back up and running and going better than ever! Looking forward to chatting with y'all!
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