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Layor

EQMod Direct pc connection EQ6 Pro

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OK it seems that there is a utility on the skywatcher website which can update the firmware for the MC boards, provided the original firmware is ver 2 or above. You have to use the SW PC direct cable into the handset and place the handset into PC DIRECT mode to allow the firmware to be uploaded via the utility running on the PC. I'm not sure if you had a working EQDIRECT cable if the uploader would work, and that the PC direct function has some influence in loading the code into the PICs. The only issue is that the hex file is in a MCF file and not a HEX file which rules out burning a PIC

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Good Morning All,

I've had a check of the board and as far as I can tell none of the components have failed. All of the inductors, diodes and caps appear to be okay.

The chips are PIC16F886. I think the version is above V2 but until I reconnect the handset I can't be sure. I'll be doing that in a short while.

Is it possible to get new boards? And if so, does anyone know how much, it might be easier than trying to re-program this board.

Cheers, colin.

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Good Morning All,

I've had a check of the board and as far as I can tell none of the components have failed. All of the inductors, diodes and caps appear to be okay.

The chips are PIC16F886. I think the version is above V2 but until I reconnect the handset I can't be sure. I'll be doing that in a short while.

Is it possible to get new boards? And if so, does anyone know how much, it might be easier than trying to re-program this board.

Cheers, colin.

If the board is stuffed, then a reprogram has to be cheaper if it work than a new board, as there nothing to lose but your time,,,,,i can't help with the replacement if one is required, maybe a e-mail to Skywatcher.......de G0OHQ...:)

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Okay, thanks Tinker, I'll perhaps go down that route then. the version number is: 3.26.

If Malc or Chris could give me a rundown on installing the new firmware it would be appreciated :icon_salut:

73 de MW6CQO

Colin

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Sandy, thanks for that info, yes, they are expensive but not as much as I expected!! I thought they may have been around the £200 mark.

So if all else fails I'll order one of those.

don't suppose they do 'part exchange' do they :grin: :grin: :grin: :grin:

Colin.

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Colin,

The 16F886 is supported by my development board. Can you verify the package format. I can only program DIL devices. If that is the case then I'll have a rummage through my electronics box to see if I have a couple of 16F886's. If not I'll order some samples and have a go at squirting the code to them... assuming I can convert the file formats - Might be worth a punt even if you opt to purchase a replacement board

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One other thing... have you checked the wiring on the back of the 9 way D connector... just in case is simple case of a disconnected wire

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Thanks Malc, Yes, it is a DIL package but they are soldered to the board not in a socket. I'm good at soldering but I think that woulld test my skills!

I did check the connections, just in case, but they are fine. I've got a horrible feeling that, as careful as I am, I could have shorted one of the pins when checking for voltages.

I know that the cable I made is okay, but as I said in one of my posts the yellow wire was only giving milivolts but the green was giving a stable 5v, which made me wonder if the wiring was different. But what I will do for the sake of being sure, is get a cable from FLO. It might save a lot of headaches :grin: :grin:

Colin.

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Some very useful info in this thread - thank you :) Useful to have a link to a source of main boards just in case. I decided to get an EQDIR from FLO when I started up, as although I've had plenty of experience with electronics, I'm also not infallible and decided not to risk blowing up my expensive new mount.

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You can say that again, Gina! Very useful.

I've been involved with electronics for nearly 40 years and still make mistakes and get things wrong :mad:

But as an example of why things need to be checked out, in the first thread on this subject 'EQDit for under £4' there is a photo of a usb plug showing the green wire on Rx and the white on Tx. I've just opened one of mine and it's the other way around, green Tx and white Rx!!

What's the old saying...measure twice, cut once... in our case, check a thousand times, solder once.... :grin: :grin:

By the way, are you going to the Norman Lockyer Obsy Astronomy Fair.

Colin

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Chris, I've browsed the files section but I'm unable to locate a HEX file or a simple means of extracting the hex from the MCF file available from the download section of SW support page. Can you point me in the right direction

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Your best bet is to make contact with the guys contributing to that EQMOD group thread I linked to above. I've not flashed a synscan myself but they clearly have.

Chris.

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Chris, I've posted a new request via the group. Hopefully we might be able to help Colin out without the expense of a new MC board

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I know this is a few weeks old thread.

As someone mention the inductor blowing I would like to say that 18months ago one of my HitecAstro EQDir failed and it also damaged the EQ6 main board and blew the inductors. As these as really small surface mounted components I was unable to replace them, however I got the board working  (and still is) by using 2amp fuse wire soldered across the inductor joints. I don't know how long it will last but it's cheaper then the £120 +vat +P&P Optistar wanted to charge for the main board and I don't have any other problems.

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Hi all. I have the same issues but my handset connects OK and works. 

 

Com ports all balance

Drivers updated 

ASCOM clear out and re-install done

Toolbox run as Admin and registered ok

Go to connect...... Timeout

 

I am running Win10 onto EQ6.... 

 

Help please. 

 

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9 minutes ago, Cloudless_nights said:

Hi all. I have the same issues but my handset connects OK and works. 

 

Com ports all balance

Drivers updated 

ASCOM clear out and re-install done

Toolbox run as Admin and registered ok

Go to connect...... Timeout

 

I am running Win10 onto EQ6.... 

 

Help please. 

 

 

By "the same" are you saying that when you use an EQDirect cable your get a time out, but when you use the handset you have control?

Presume you've check the obvious, that the comm port setting are the same that the EQDir cable device is set to ?

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On 01/12/2019 at 19:07, malc-c said:

 

By "the same" are you saying that when you use an EQDirect cable your get a time out, but when you use the handset you have control?

Presume you've check the obvious, that the comm port setting are the same that the EQDir cable device is set to ?

Now also tried alternative to prolic chip set and gone to Ftdi chip set (or something like that) but same problem. 

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What version of EQ6 do you have - the new R version has a USB port that permits direct connection to a PC (basically the serial to USB chip is now on the motherboard) - But it seems after a little research it needs to set the port baud speed on the PC to  115200 bps in both the port settings and ASCOM driver setting.  If you have the older mount with DB9 connector, and it works with the handset but not the EQDir cable, then it has to be a fault with the cable or incorrect communications settings on the PC / ASCOM   

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I recently had the same issues, more or less, but solved them by ditching Eqmod and using the SW synscan pro app instead.

 

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