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Data connects for guiding


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I am in the middle of getting into guiding and I have seen several ways of connecting up the data between PC, camera and mount. The simplest seems to be a usb cable from scope to camera and an ST-4 cable from camera to PC. The ads imply it should be just plug and play that way. What do the other more complicated setups achieve? It seems a lot of trouble to make the ST-4 to USB conversion between PC and steering port of the synscan handset. The interface costs a minimum of £35 afaics.

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50 minutes ago, Davey-T said:

You can simply use the ST4 cable and PHD.

Dave

What davey-t means is that the st4 port on the camera connects directly to the st4 port on the mount. No usb to serial required. The usb on the camera then connects to usb on the pc so PhD can see the guide star selected. 

Daft question but you do have a guide scope and camera in addition to your main scope? 

It's not clear what setup you have.

Dave...

 

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1 hour ago, sophiecentaur said:

I am in the middle of getting into guiding and I have seen several ways of connecting up the data between PC, camera and mount. The simplest seems to be a usb cable from scope to camera and an ST-4 cable from camera to PC. The ads imply it should be just plug and play that way. What do the other more complicated setups achieve? It seems a lot of trouble to make the ST-4 to USB conversion between PC and steering port of the synscan handset. The interface costs a minimum of £35 afaics.

The ST4 cable runs from guiding camera to the mount, not to the PC.

Simplest is to use ASCOM pulse guiding. No ST4 required. USB cable from guiding camera to PC. USB-to-serial from PC to mount. Run PHD on the PC. EQASCOM is also worth its weight in gold and is free.

 

 

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7 minutes ago, Zakalwe said:

The ST4 cable runs from guiding camera to the mount, not to the PC.

Simplest is to use ASCOM pulse guiding. No ST4 required. USB cable from guiding camera to PC. USB-to-serial from PC to mount. Run PHD on the PC. EQASCOM is also worth its weight in gold and is free.

 

 

You say USB to serial cable from pc to mount, is that the same as EQDIRECT cable which i use to run my mount via EQMOD, or is it a different cable ?

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6 minutes ago, LightBucket said:

You say USB to serial cable from pc to mount, is that the same as EQDIRECT cable which i use to run my mount via EQMOD, or is it a different cable ?

just about to ask the same question.

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34 minutes ago, LightBucket said:

You say USB to serial cable from pc to mount, is that the same as EQDIRECT cable which i use to run my mount via EQMOD, or is it a different cable ?

Yes, EQDIRECT cable.

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The OP didn't want to buy a cable so just using ST4 cable from camera to mount guide port and USB  cable from camera to PC would be the cheapest / simplest way.

Once up and running she ? can then get into the more complicated / expensive systems.

Dave

Edited by Davey-T
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Thanks for the responses. I do not have a camera yet so I am assessing what I will need for data connections. I sussed out that the cables that come in the camera box will do the basic business for me. There are numerous sketch diagrams showing interconnections between PC, camera and possibly synscan. I have tried to reverse-engineer the system in my head to find out what exactly happens (that's my standard approach for all of life). Hence, I want to know what the function of a 'guide'  (auto guide?) camera is, over and above a camera and I haven't found a description. How is the processing shared between the camera and the PC and what actual signals are carried by the USB cable? 

I assume that 'all' the ST4 cable needs to do is to send instructions to the mount motors. But what actually goes on in the camera?  Is it the guiding brain?I have read of different guiding algorithms but the camera algorithm may not be adjustable(?).

On a separate issue, if I have the two guiding cables connected, is it necessary to use a separate cable from PC to Synscan, for just pointing the scope where I want it? To do that would need a USB / ST4 adaptor, I suppose.

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3 hours ago, Zakalwe said:

Yes, EQDIRECT cable.

When all connected and with PhD open, do i then select the EQMOD Ascom driver from the mount drop down list, and my guide camera from the camera drop down list, and it will then use pulse guiding, and is it best to leave the settings in EQMOD for pulse guide at default or do they need altering...??

sorry for all the questions, i have only ever used pulse guide with my old wedge mounted Meade SCT with the handset connected to my PC.

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13 hours ago, LightBucket said:

do i then select the EQMOD Ascom driver

Hi. Yes. That's more or less it.

13 hours ago, LightBucket said:

EQMOD for pulse guide at default

No. The default settings don't work very well. Some suggested starting point settings are here.

Here are mine with an eq6 and asi120mm. HTH and good luck.

 

eq2.JPG.0ba9554ae7e929c07f2430eb94668b32.JPGeq1.JPG.16afd2932b902e87b2a48727caede259.JPG

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2 hours ago, alacant said:

Hi. Yes. That's more or less it.

No. The default settings don't work very well. Some suggested starting point settings are here.

Here are mine with an eq6 and asi120mm. HTH and good luck.

 

eq2.JPG.0ba9554ae7e929c07f2430eb94668b32.JPGeq1.JPG.16afd2932b902e87b2a48727caede259.JPG

Thanks for that.. :)

Edited by LightBucket
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20 hours ago, LightBucket said:

When all connected and with PhD open, do i then select the EQMOD Ascom driver from the mount drop down list, and my guide camera from the camera drop down list, and it will then use pulse guiding, and is it best to leave the settings in EQMOD for pulse guide at default or do they need altering...??

sorry for all the questions, i have only ever used pulse guide with my old wedge mounted Meade SCT with the handset connected to my PC.

OK

That implies that you needed a different cable, to connect PC to handset? Was this USB?

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1 minute ago, sophiecentaur said:

OK

That implies that you needed a different cable, to connect PC to handset? Was this USB?

No this was a serial cable that had rj11 plug on one end to go into smaller port on the bottom of the meade handset, with a standard serial DB9 plug on the other end then a standard serial to USB converter to connect that to the pc, i used to guide my Meade LX90 superbly this way and managed 15min subs with no real issues, i then got the APM909 port module which had an ST4 guide port, so i tried that but was no where near as good as the way i did it before using Ascom pulse guide so went back to doing it that way... :)

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