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Complete confusion regarding Auto guiding.


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Hey guys.

I have recently got a Skywatcher 200p with a HEQ5 pro (GOTO) mount. I currently have 24 tabs open in my quest to understand guide-scopes etc.

I do not want to take the community for granted, I have seen how generous it is but I have a few questions. Please feel free to answer any you know not only for me but for anyone who is as confused as I am.

1) Auto-guiding vs GOTO?

2) What do I need for auto-guiding?

3) Finder-scope vs Guide-scope

4) PHD vs EQmod? What do they do?

5) Does PHD work with the HEQ5 mount (some say it doesn't)?

6) Do you need a guide-scope/Finder-scope (Answer to #2 pending) for PHD or EQmod

7) What does the QHY5 do (gets lots of mentions)

8) People seem to use QHY5 with the ST80, does this need to happen?

9) How do you connect everything up? I.E, laptop to remote or Laptop to auto-guide port etc?

10) What cables do I need, I was some things on USB vs another type.

Thanks to the people who respond, thanks also to the people taking the time to read this. As you can see my brain is completely fried and I am beyond confused as to what is going on with auto-guiding.

Regards

Brendan.

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Hey guys.

I have recently got a Skywatcher 200p with a HEQ5 pro (GOTO) mount. I currently have 24 tabs open in my quest to understand guide-scopes etc.

I do not want to take the community for granted, I have seen how generous it is but I have a few questions. Please feel free to answer any you know not only for me but for anyone who is as confused as I am.

1) Auto-guiding vs GOTO?

goto is just a way of finding an object it is not guiding.

2) What do I need for auto-guiding?

camera and guide scope

3) Finder-scope vs Guide-scope

Finder-scope nice and light weight, Guide-scope longer focal length

4) PHD vs EQmod? What do they do?

PHD and EQmod you use both programmes eqmod enables your mount to communicate with your pc

5) Does PHD work with the HEQ5 mount (some say it doesn't)?

PHD workd fine with the heq5 it is what use every night

6) Do you need a guide-scope/Finder-scope (Answer to #2 pending) for PHD or EQmod

Finder-scope nice and light weight and the focal length is long enough for your scope it is what i use

7) What does the QHY5 do (gets lots of mentions)

QHY5 is a fine choice, again it is what i use

8) People seem to use QHY5 with the ST80, does this need to happen?

as above really

9) How do you connect everything up? I.E, laptop to remote or Laptop to auto-guide port etc?

you will several USB ports

10) What cables do I need, I was some things on USB vs another type.

with the qhy5 you can use the st4 socket but i had a lot of problems with it so i use eqdir cable

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Easiest option is the SW Synguider , just needs a cheapo 70/500 frac as a guidescope , mine was £20 , plugs into the mount without all the laptop faffery , good for 20 min + with the HEQ5 and 200P.

PS. Please forgive my manners , a very warm welcome to SGL . . . :laugh:

Edited by Steve Ward
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You need a guide camera. A QHY5 or Lodestar are the preferred options, though some use a webcam with varied effect.

You need some way for the guide camera to see - a separate scope (ST80) dual mounted, a finder guider or an off-axis guider (OAG).

You need some way for the guide camera to interpret the picture - PHD is good and free. There are other options.

You need a way to send corrections to the mount - ST4 cable, or use EQMOD's pulse guiding. If you use EQMOD anyway, this saves on an ST4 cable (cost and clutter).

You need a laptop.

You need a mount that will accept guide corrections (ST4 or EQMOD).

You need a little bit of patience.

There are integrated all-in-one camera/computer/software guiding solutions. I would avoid them myself.

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ust needs a cheapo 70/500 frac as a guidescope

Excuse my ignorance, what is a 70/500 frac?

On another note, thank you all for the help. This topic and astronomy in general is incredibly daunting for a brand noobie like me. Having such a helpful community sure makes it allot easier.

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ust needs a cheapo 70/500 frac as a guidescope

Excuse my ignorance, what is a 70/500 frac?

On another note, thank you all for the help. This topic and astronomy in general is incredibly daunting for a brand noobie like me. Having such a helpful community sure makes it allot easier.

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Excuse my ignorance, what is a 70/500 frac?

On another note, thank you all for the help. This topic and astronomy in general is incredibly daunting for a brand noobie like me. Having such a helpful community sure makes it allot easier.

70mm = aperture, 500mm = focal length, frac = refractor

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Excuse my ignorance, what is a 70/500 frac?

On another note, thank you all for the help. This topic and astronomy in general is incredibly daunting for a brand noobie like me. Having such a helpful community sure makes it allot easier.

70mm = aperture, 500mm = focal length, frac = refractor

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Excuse my ignorance, what is a 70/500 frac?

On another note, thank you all for the help. This topic and astronomy in general is incredibly daunting for a brand noobie like me. Having such a helpful community sure makes it allot easier.

70mm = aperture, 500mm = focal length, frac = refractor

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You'll also need all the adaptors for attaching the cameras to the telescopes - rings and dovetail to attach the two scopes together or side by side - usb cables and and a hub to attach the lot to a single usb port on your computer (and/or an st4 cable) - plus software to drive the lot - most of it's free like ASCOM, Phd, Polar finder, APT (small license cost), BYEOS, etc.... :)

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Ok. last question I promise before I go drink myself to sleep.

what is pulse guiding? why does it not need the ST4 cable?

its when the PC sends a "pulse " to the mount to command it to move in a certain direction, the ST4 cable is not needed because you connect via the handset post on the HEQ5

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