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  1. Hello everyone. TL;DR If you are certain the mount and cable are good, and you are certain the com port selected is correct and so is the baud rate, but you still have connection issues to eqAscom you may want to try a different power cable to your mount. This was the cause of my connection error in eqmod. I spent the last few days almost ripping out my hair trying to get my telescope to connect to eqmod ascom. I later found the problem which I didn't see on any forum, granted my search may not have been thorough enough. Anyway I thought I'd try to help out this community by explaining my problem and how I fixed it. If you are having a similar issue to me I hope this can help you. Issue- Connect Error: Timeout. I am using a HEQ5 pro mount, the mount is slightly over a year old and has been working fine with the current set up and hand controller. I later decide to upgrade the system by connecting it to the laptop. I purchased an appropriate cable from FLO and get the Lynx Astro mount to USB cable. I have downloaded and installed ASCOM platform v6.6 and EQMOD v200w. I power up the mount, connect the cable to laptop and I get a timeout error in eqmod toolbox. Fix 1. FTDI driver; I check the cable in device manager and see I need to set up the correct driver for the FTDI chip. Link to driver for my Lynx Astro cable - https://ftdichip.com/drivers/vcp-drivers/. While the driver must be installed and now was I still had a connection error. Fix 2. Baud rate; I make sure that the correct baud rate is selected in eqmod i.e 115200/9600 (I say 115200 as this is what the internet told me I should use, I later found out that only 9600 would work). However this did not fix my problem! Additional note you may want to check the baud rate thing of the com port. Fix 2, Sort of worked. Although, sometimes it would connect to eqmod for several minutes and even allow me to control the mount it would always later drop the connection and give me another timeout error. Even when connected eqmod and stellarium would be extremely slow. I figured this was because the mount was only updating eqmod every 7+seconds when connected. Clearly this worked but only kind of and this set up was not going to be reliable on a night under the sky. I later go nuts and take apart the entire mount, trying visually inspect wires and probe various parts with a multimeter. I later probe the power supply to the mount and find that I am getting a steady 12volts, I again was at a loss with what the issue could be. I check the connection of the Rj45 to mount to see if it is loose or anything, same with the power cable and it all looks good. Through sheer luck I ended up using a different power cable later that day to take another look at this problem and to my surprise it was working perfectly! The mount worked and was updating eqmod every second and could control the mounts position quickly and with ease. I load up stellarium and it was responding fast, and would allow me to point the mount wherever. Not once has the eqmod dropped out of connection. Knowing that the only thing I changed in the set up this time was a power supply I switch to the old one to see what would happen. Eqmod couldn't connect and if it did it would run slow and judder ultimately ending in it dropping the connection completely. So if like me you have checked the cable's driver, driver setup in eqmod (baud and com number), and you still can't connect or can just about connect but it runs slow or keeps disconnecting and reconnecting you might want to try another power supply. While the cable produced a steady 12 volts (I didn't check amps) I think maybe what was happening is the power supply wasn't seated well in the mount socket and the change in power supply gave the scope a better fit and therefore constant supply of power. You will eventually find the solution to your problem so don't give up. You may also want to consider taking your telescope to a shop for them to have a look at if you have run out of all other options. I really hope this helps.
  2. I had a bit of a breakthrough moment last night when I finally got platesolving working under APT. Slewed to various objects in Stellarium then platesolved them pretty quickly in APT - wonder why it's taken me so long to get round to it! Anyway, after 90 minutes of adding data to my M81 folder I thought I'd have another play with the GOTO's in stellarium and practice the platesolves. After a handful, Goto's were very nearly landing right on the spot BUT around 1:30am I thought I'd take a look at the moon. Pointed to it in Stellarium, clicked current object then slew and watched as the mount failed to point within 5 degrees of the moon. It ended up pointing much further west and lower in the sky. Odd. A subsequent click on Capella brought that star right into the centre of the frame. Targetting the moon once again brought the scope pointing further west - looked like exactly the same spot as before. My coordinates in Stellarium match those in EQMOD and the time is picked up from my laptop. Anyone else see this sort of behaviour using stellarium? Graeme
  3. Hi All I have been using my 'best' laptop with Windows 8.1 to control an EQ5 Pro mount via a USB/Serial converter with a lead directly to the hand controller set to PC Direct Mode. On the same laptop I have installed PHD2 for guiding and BackyardEOS for image capture and a gampepad for ease of 'tweaking' the telescope pointing. I have also installed Cartes du Ciel (CdC) to find and slew to targets. This system has worked flawlessly (other than 'idiot induced' problems) for a number of months now. I was lucky enough to be given another, slightly older, laptop to use so I thought the 'best' laptop could stay in the office and the older laptop could now become the astro imaging laptop. As far as I can see, I have everything configured the same and, on first trials in daylight, everything seemed to be working OK. Could connect to the mount OK, control via gampad OK, PHD2 connected OK etc etc. First 'imaging in anger' night seemed to going well until I noticed that the star trails suddenly appeared to be streaked after successfully capturing a few previous images. PHD2 was still connected but the guide star was way off target (the little green square in PHD) and appeared to be drifting as I watched. CdC (the planetarium software I use) was still connected but the rectangle indicating the camera's field of view was also drifting off target. On looking at the EQMOD window I noticed that tracking was 'off'. "Another idiot induced problem?" I thought. Selected Sidereal Tracking in EQMOD and I heard the motors of the mount start 'whirring' again. Selected target in CdC and slewed the 'scope back to the target. Selected guide star again in PHD and guiding started OK (I could hear the motor 'tones' changing as they received correction signals from PHD. Back on track - so I thought! After a short while, the problem occurred again - Sidereal tracking was shown as being turned off in EQMOD. These are only differences between the successful setup and the rogue version; Working System 2.4ghz processor, Windows 8.1 Failing system 2.2ghz processor, Windows 7 Has anyone else had this problem? Any suggestions as to what could be causing this problem would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Richard
  4. I seem to be struggling getting the co-ordinates right in EQMOD Mine are N 53.XXXX,E -2.XXXX Do I enter it as -2 and select E or do i enter it as 02 or just 2 and select W??When i select a target in CDC it either points in the opposite direction or at the floor I've tried all manner of variations,none of which seem to work? Any help much appreciated
  5. Hello fellow astronomers, I have come to the forums as I have depleted all other options. I own an NEQ5 GoTo with a Skywatcher 72ED. I have connected the mount to my computer using an EQDIRECT cable. I am trying to use stellarium with ascom and eqmod to slew the mount to a desired object. I have configured my scope using the “telescope control” plugin in stellarium. In the past I had successfully achieved slewing through stellarium. The problem is that now, one month later, when opening stellarium and trying to slew the telescope to a selected object (using either the “slew telescope to” panel or the shortcut (control + 1)) the mount moves for a fraction of a second and then stops, stellarium freezes and then the scope indicator in stellarium slides quickly to the horizon, and EQMOD control panel displays “horizon limit horizon limit” error. (Let’s call this the “main failure mode”.) Note that : I can use EQMOD and slew the scope manually without problem. If using it in tandem with stellarium, when I do so the scope indicator in stellarium moves without issue. I have used the “resync encoders” button on EQMOD to establish the home position, but this does not affect the behavior. I can use ascom device hub to slew the scope manually without a problem as well. The main failure mode described above happens most of the time. However, I sometimes get other erratic behavior in stellarium: Sometimes, when trying to slew the scope in stellarium, the mount moves for a second then stops (as described above), yet the scope indicator in stellarium moves to the selected object not the horizon, then the mount starts to track (even though it has not yet slewed). Or, rarely, when trying to slew the scope in stellarium, the mount physically moves (seemingly to the object) and starts tracking, the scope indicator moves to the selected object -- appearing to work normally. But then, when trying to slew the scope a second time to a different object, it fails again as described in the main failure mode above. I have tried opening stellarium as administrator but I still get one of the three outcomes when trying to slew. Does anyone have any insight on this ?
  6. Hi all, Before turning to AZ-EQ6 GT mount, I tried to upgrade my previous Losmandy G11 mount to autoguiding by use of a SBIG Relay Box connecting the PC to the mount through an ST4 cable. I didn't intend to transform it into a goto system -it remained manual- just wanted to realize an autoguided system, and I succeded for short exposures up to two-three minutes, but I wasn't able to scale up, hence I turned to the SkyWatcher. My Losmandy dates back to the end of 1990's, but never showed backlash and worm-gear play like the brand new AZ-EQ6 GT did. I was quite deluded by that, and I still complain and dream to realize a G11 full upgrade to a goto system. Now I wonder whether Eqmod ASCOM would make it, maybe just by controlling the Relay Box/ST4 connection through Eqmod. May somebody give me an answer? I would also like to get comments on the idea of a full upgrade of the G11: is it worthy of that? If positive, I would also like to explore more complex systems for the full upgrade, given that anybody has an idea. Cesco
  7. Hi All Has anybody else had this problem? I use a single, ageing laptop (HP620 8Gb RAM) running Windows 7 Pro 64bit to control my imaging setup using the following software; Cartes du Ciel and EQMOD to control EQ5 Pro mount via EQDIRECT cable connected via powered USB Hub BackyardEOS to capture images from Canon 450D via same USB powered hub PHD2 for guiding using GP-CAM 130C and EQMOD pulse guiding What confuses me is that some evenings everything works absolutely fine. Another evening, using exactly the same hardware, software and even connections (ie I always plug the leads into the same ports) the system will be working fine but then suddenly fail. The failure affects EQMOD indicating a timeout or port not available issue and the Canon 450D also 'locks' requiring a restart of the camera and BackyardEOS. I have run USBTree during such a failure and it is showing that the EQDIRECT cable (ie serial converter) is still connected to COM4 (which is correct) and the Canon 450D is also still connected. I basically have to ensure that all the software is closed and any associated services also stopped. Of course, the scope is now pointing away from its home position so I have to move it manually back to 'home' before starting again. My thoughts are that there could be a number of issues; 1. Use of a USB hub 2. A dodgy EQDIRECT cable 3. USB cables too long (ie about 5m) 4. Windows is turning off a connection (I have set the power management for each USB port to 'off') 5. Canon 450D somehow 'freezing' When using this laptop, I turn off the Wifi and Anti Virus and Automatic Updates are also off. It just baffles me that sometimes this system works flawlessly for hours and yet other nights it keeps failing. Any suggestions gratefully received. Thanks for looking.
  8. Hello all Can I ask what is the current thinking and methods on the following things. There seems to be some really old YouTube videos of how to control your mount and control your camera but I would like to hear what is the latest wisdom on the following: Eq6 Mount Control? Stellarium? Eqmod? Handset? Bluetooth? Canon camera exposure control. Aptool? Intervalometer? Laptop? iOS app??? Is that even possibile? I have a Eq6 pro but I would love to know what the most current way of doing these things are. It's mainly for imaging. Bring me me up to date please! Thanks Gerry
  9. Well the lynx cable came yesterday for my EQ6 PRO from FLO,well packaged in a bubble wrap bag and comparing with my previous eqdirect cable, build wise much better, more professional looking , thicker round cable, metal D-sub with long thumb screws, moulded usb plug, £34 ok not cheap but about the norm for an EQdirect cable , quick check eqmod found straight off ,uses the fdti chip set so didn`t matter what usb port i used, still said com11, would recommend .
  10. In the category of medium nuisance, but have had some issues with EQMOD losing its communication to the mount on several occasions and wondered if this is expected or if I have a particular issue. I'm using and HEQ5 Pro mount wired directly to a HitechAstro EQDIR. Having three USB Ports on my laptop the EQDIR share a single USB controller/port with the game pad sensor, my other two ports are connected directly to image and guide cams. All cables and connections look good (checked with multimeter for continuity/resistance), are routed away from power, connectors are taped up and I've been careful not to disturb them. I'm running Ascom 6 SP2 on a windows 7 x64 laptop, with both cams and the mount under Ascom control. The setup works fine 80% of the time, but sometimes it seems to lock on target and won't take any further instruction to change position or slew to another target. The mount continues to track the current target, but it does not respond to movement commands via CdC, game pad or directly on the EQascom controller window - though EQascom does seem to be updating (DEC coordinates) and I can still change the slew speed with game pad or directly. Pretty sure the EQMod, Ascom and CdC are playing nicely on my lappie and there does not seem to be any app actually hanging or producing an error - so had been thinking the EQDir might be suspect, though the fact the mount was still tracking got me a little confused. If comms were lost would the mount continue to track with no further input? Or perhaps the serial cable/connections are a little dubious on the EQDir - HEQ5 TX pair. If it's not a common problem, then EQDir or the serial cable/connectors seem most probable - though any suggestions considered before I hard wire everything in to place with the new pier!
  11. Hi So I use Windows 7 EQMOM ASCOM 6SP2 Cartes du Ciel and for Guiding im using PHD So I set up and align with EQMOD with no issues and then slew to target and image away, PHD does the guiding independently of EQMOD and all is well. If I then try to move to a new target I get the message that EQMOD is not responding so I have to kill Cartes du Ciel and restart. This behaviour is consistent, I have no way of knowing when EQMOD stops responding but it does. So is there any logging within EQMOD that may help track down the issue ? Regards John Berman
  12. Hi All I have recently started using EQMOD to control my EQ5 Pro mount. When I use the mount with the SynScan Hand Controller I have noticed the usual backlash in the Declination axis when reversing the direction from north to south or vice versa. In the SynScan Setup/Backlash/Declination menu option, I find that setting this to 0deg 0' 50" (ie 50 arcseconds) compensates for the backlash when using the hand controller. My questions are these; When using EQMOD and the PC Direct mode setting on the hand controller, is this Declination Backlash compensation still applied? (I suspect not) Does EQMOD have the functionality to apply similar Declination backlash compensation when using the the direction buttons in EQMOD to control the mount? I intend using EQMOD's Pulse Guiding and see that there is a Declination backlash compensation for this feature. Please bear with me whilst I ask another couple of questions; I intend to use PHD2 as the guiding client. I think that PHD2 will 'build in' backlash compensation when it performs its calibration. If this assumption is correct, does this mean I do not need to enter any value into the Backlash compensation in the guiding area of EQMOD? Out of curiosity more than anything else, what on Earth would the value be I should enter in the EQMOD backlash compensation? On the SynScan the backlash compensation is entered as an angular measurement (ie 50 arcsecnds) but in EQMOD guiding it seems to be entered as a time value (ie between 0 and 2000 milliseconds ) Anyway, thanks for looking.
  13. Dear All! Please read everything!!! I have a big DEC backlash on my EQ3 mount near to 8000ms, and the pulse guide correction is slow and the 2000ms doesnt enough to correct this issue. So I decided to correct it with this great EQMOD project to add some new code in the backlash correction The plan was to use the slew direction to correct the backlash! WARNING!!!! this code works like the slew controls so its minimally override the DEC coordinates. Installation from zip file: 1. install AQESCOM - final version\EQASCOM_V200j_Setup.exe 2. Copy files from final version\common files\eqcontrl.dll to C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\ASCOM\Telescope or C:\Program Files\Common Files\ASCOM\Telescope, but make BACKUP first! 3. run EQMOD's toolbox and register eqmod.exe 4. Happy testing. In my case the correction ratio is 800 and duration is 290ms PS. Thank You for the developers to this great project!!! final version.zip
  14. Hi guys, I been googling a lot and was not able to find a solution how to connect EQMOD to the Mount via SW Wifi Dongle... it looks like EQMOD needs COM Port to be used.... I do remember there was some kind of "Virtual Com port bridge to Wifi"app back in Win98 days... But I cannot find anything similar for Win10. I want to test EQMOD auto-guiding via WIFI, - I know, it's not reliable, but I want to try as I have Skywatcher wifi dongle and my USB to Serial (RS-232) Converter Cable is wayyyy too short to keep my PC (and me) in warm. I am able to connect with SynScanPro app to Wifi Dongle and even sync it with Stellarium nicely... Only Auto-guiding missing... Any ideas?
  15. Hi all. As of late. I’ve been having a load of issues with ascom. When I try and load any of the application up I keep getting something 55 and app already running. now I think I’ve sorted this, when I start eqmod to control the mount the little box that loads up keeps flashing on and off the screen, I try and exit the program and it just continues to flash. When I go into task manager it’s not in there? Please help!
  16. Hi, What a time I am having with this EQ8, shame it's not a good one. I used the handset to perform the 2 star alignment, then went through the polar alignment routine on 2 different stars, about 3 times each. I got the polar alignment pretty close by using my Atik camera on the PC monitor. The mount continued to track well with the handset, I parked, turned off. Connected EQMOD cable, powered up, unparked, resync'ed encoders and then went to find Capella to sync on to start building my points list in EQMOD. Well once I got to Capella and the Sidereal rate was on, the stars were zipping past on the PC monitor - but hadn't I just polar aligned successfully via the handset? But it felt like the tracking wasn't even on in EQMOD even though it said it was. Has anybody come across this problem? Thanks Daniel
  17. I was showing a friend today all the brilliant things that eqmod can do for my EQ6 mount and he is totally sold. However, he has a celestron Advance GT GEM mount and eqmod won't work with these mounts. He uses Celestron's Nexremote software with stellariumScope but there's no wizzy options such as disabling meridian flip or specifying mount limits etc. Does anyone know of a Celestron compatible alternative that can work in a similar way as EQMod?
  18. For a long time now I have been using the Prolific driver installer v10518 from the HitecAstro site on my windows 7 computer. Recently I have been getting a lot of overnight crashes and lost a lot of imaging time. An analysis of last night's crash pointed to the Prolific driver. MS today offered me a new driver V3.6.81.357 to replace v3.3.5.122. First signs are that it works... well I can move the mount. My question to the group is in 2 parts:- 1) Is this new driver reliable? 2) Is this now the time to find a new more reliable EQDIR interface and if so what recommendations can you offer. TIA Andy
  19. Setting up all the software on my win10 laptop and getting things to talk to one another is a nightmare. I'm starting a new thread, so I can post all the problems I am having, one at a time, so issues don't get confused. This will also hopefully help anyone coming to similar situations later, as the problems and answers will not be interlaced. First issue: APT does not detect ZWO camera. I have got the camera (ZWO) drivers installed and sharpcap can see it and will connect to it properly. However, when I try to connect the camera in APT, the only CCD options it gives me are SBIG (which it isn't), QSI (which it isn't) and ASCOM. Now it shouldn't need to use an ascom driver, because the proper driver is installed, but I give it a go anyway, and this just offers me 2 simulators and 3 QHY cameras (I have one qhy driver installed for the guidecam .... I'll get to that later!). I have disconnected both the filterwheel and guide camera from the camera hub, so they cannot be interefering with the process. I am at a total loss ... any suggestions? Thanks.
  20. Hi, After 6 months of waiting for the new deep-sky camera to reach my observatory,I discovered I have a real problem. All this time, the system was used only several times, with the purpose to make some deep-sky images using a planetary camera (an ASI 174 mono - see the topic HERE ). Using the set-up for this kind of images, the usual way to acquire images was altered. At some point I discovered that is more easy and reliable to make a synchronization from TheSky6 and not from MaximDL, as usual. This is the history. Yesterday night and the night before, after installing my new CCD camera on the rig, I started to redo the adjustments in order to have a good alignment, a good focus and have some decent pictures to evaluate the camera. But at this point, I had a nasty surprise. I inserted some screen shots to understand better what I want to explain (and perhaps I will not do it well because of my English). When I pointed in The Sky to a star and sent the "slew" command, the cross-hair on TheSky6 show me that the telescope is pointing to that star. But looking to the small planetarium from MaximDL, I sow that the crosshair here is not pointing exactly to that star, but a little bit apart from it, which shouldn't happened... Trying to synchronize the scope in Maxim with the star position, the scope stopped to move in sidereal. Actually, he stop at all. Doing the same thing first time in Maxim and then in TheSky, an error message from TheSky appeared. After rebooting the computer and started again all the programs, same thing happens. Sometimes, when first syncronizing in Maxim and then in TheSky, the error does not appear but the crosshair is jumping apart from the star in one program when is pointing in the other one and other way around... i am desperate, because I do not understand what is happen. Could anyone to give me a hint, please? Had anyone a similar problem before? How can I erase the sky model from TheSky and put it back on the same alignment with the model from Maxim (which apparently work good stand alone in conjunction with EQMOD)?
  21. Dear fellow stargazers... I'm helping a friend with a tracking issue using Eqmod. He has used EQAscom for a number of years with his Celestron CG-5 no problem. Having moved over to the new fancy Skywatcher EQ6-R mount (I'm not jelous... not one bit), he now has a problem with EQAscom. Having chosen PC-Drect mode on the hand-controller, EQAscom connects to the mount and slews perfectly, however when using Stellarium Scope and slewing to an object, the mount does not then continue to track the target (even after pressing the siderial rate button on EQAscom). We have checked EQAscoms 'default siderial rate' and it is as it should be. It does work however by then going back to the hand-controller setup menu and re-selecting 'Siderial Rate' under tracking, then choosing PC-direct mode again. Then EQAscom/Stellarium Scope works normally with tracking. Although we have found this temporary fix, it is quite annoying to have to go through this procedure with every session. Has anyone else come across this issue or had no problems using the EQ6-R with EQAscom? Were trying to decipher if it is a compatibility problem with the new mount (as it is a new kid on the block with different motor drives etc). Thanks in advance for any comments/suggestions Matt
  22. I am at a complete loss to understand why eqmod was not syncing on CdC last night. I have had a look at this video, I had the star centred on the screen [3m33s], I pressed sync on CdC, I got the dialog box [3m39s], I clicked 'yes' and NOTHING happened: the white circle stayed where it was, no sync points were added to EQMOD, zilch! I can get round most problems, but this really one stymies my GOTOs and, therefore, my imaging process. I have been unable to find anything in the EQMOD documentation that deals with such an error and a search on here has turned up no help (but that always depends on the words put into the search!). I checked all the obvious things (location, date/time, etc - but why any of these should stop sync working is beyond me). It's all running on Windoze 10. Any suggestions on why this should have stopped working and (more importantly) how I might get it working? Thanks.
  23. I’ve been having issues with platesolving using Platesolve2 and my Ioptron IEQ30PRO Mount, I’m connecting using the Ioptron Commander Ascom driver. I’m using Maxim DL5 to locate and image via the Planetarium section. When the Maxim platesolving fails, especially when I’ve just started in a new location, I need to use Platesolve2, which is installed as an add on. Unfortunately I can never sync once it’s finished platesolving as the telescope disconnects at some point in the process. I only use the above setup at Star parties. At home I have an observatory with Eqmod running an eq6. I don’t have any problem using Platesolve2 in a Maxim. I was wondering if I should be connecting using POTH in between Maxim and the telescope driver. I don’t generally connect a planetarium programme now I use platesolving but I want to use The Sky6 to help with camera orientation in the future. As I understand it Eqmod will act as a hub allowing this but Ioptron Commander won’t. This may be why I have issues when using my Ioptron Mount. Can someone confirm that I’ve understood the process correctly, please? Anne
  24. Hello all I wanted to ask those that already use EQMOD what are the main benefits of using it. I have a eq6 and I currently use synscan BUT I have just loaded up cart du ciel with EQMOD and moved my mount for the first time. Lovely! What do people think of it? Does it help with imaging? Can it help with better alignment? I'm particularly interested in this. If some of you out there use it please give me a list of things that you use it for where it outshines synscan. Gerry
  25. I’ve just bought a Skywatcher EQ6-R Pro. I’m trying to drive it from Stellarium using EQMOD but I’m running into a problem I haven’t the experience to solve. This is my set up: Windows 7 Laptop > 10m active USB 3.0 cable > 4 port powered Atolla USB 3.0 hub > Lynx Astro EQMOD cable > Mount (plugged directly into hand control socket) When I first connected the mount to the laptop (a 2015 Dell Inspiron) Windows 7 searched for a serial/USB driver and installed it on COM 8 (according to Device Manager). In Stellarium I created a profile for the mount but it wouldn’t autodetect the COM port. So I manually set it to 8. When I try to connect to the mount it sits for a while and then tells me the connection has timed out. Anyone have any suggestions as to where I should start to try and get the connection sorted please? Thanks.
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