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Garethr

Synscan hand controller WILL NOT talk to PC

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Hi All 

Help Needed please 

Looking for a last chance here, before I buy another handset.

I have the Synscan handset for my NEQ6 pro bought second hand so not sure if it's the original.

Handset works with the mount no problem.

I can connect to the mount from PC no problem with Hitec cables from FLO and also have another cable which also works.

If I try to connect to the handset from the PC it is not seen on any port. (PC sees the com port and recognises a USB to serial cable).

Direct mode on handset " still can't be seen"

Tried to update software on handset from V3.25 by pressing 0 and 8 on power up and get V1.7 which I believe is correct but still no PC connection.

Any thoughts before I purchase another handset  :( 

I want the handset to work alongside the PC as the scope is based in an Obsy and the flats panel is on a wall that I need to slew to and then park back to a slightly awkward  position.  I know this can be done as a friend has a similar setup.

Any thought would be appreciated before I spend money.  :(  :(  

Gareth 

 

 

 

Edited by Garethr

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Louise/ Peter

Thanks for responding at the end of my tether here

I think that's part of my frustration, spoke to FLO on email and explained what I wanted and they replied straight away.

Ordered the cable and hoped for the best.

From PC is USB to serial RS232 with FTDI chipset.  This works as I can control the mount and now have 2 of these for some reason both of which will talk to the mount.  From these I needed a RS232 to ST4 to connect to the handset.  This seems to be where it goes wrong, no connection to handset. replaced RS232 to ST4 and same again.  Gut feeling is it's the final connection to handset that's the issue.  Wanted to check if there was anything else possibly wrong.  Have tried Direct to PC  no good and Esc on handset for 5 sec to go back to normal operation.  GRRRRRRRR

 

Gareth 

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Hi Gareth,

You cannot update the handset software if it is connected to the mount.

You need to connect it to the PC using a USB to RS232 converter and power it separately using the power socket on the bottom of the handset.

You then need to download the correct firmware from the Skywatcher site and also the update installation instructions.

http://ca.skywatcher.com/download/firmware/azeq-firmware/ttps

The latest handset update is V 3.39.03 for the V3 handset.

You may also need to download the Synscan Firmware loader V 3.3

Follow the installation instructions to the letter.

Quite what your reported V1.7 relates to I have no idea .... it seems a little odd... perhaps Peter can shed some light on this.

I hope this helps get you up and running.

Best regards.

Sandy.

P.S. the firmware is now common to both the Alt/Az and EQ handsets.

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Are you in definitely direct connect mode on the handset?

If so and the cable is OK, than it should connect to the HC at this point.

 

Edited by MarsG76

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can I check that you can control the mount through the handset but if you disconnect the handset and connect it directly to the pc you cannot make a connection?

This may be your usb to serial adapter.

If you want to control the mount from both pc and handset just because you use a flat panel it may be worth using a eqdirect cable and then use eqmod to slew the mount or I think you can set up the location of the panel in eqmod and use it as a one click slew position.

Tbh I just undo my clutches and point the scope up and reset my A4 light panel on the top of the scope. I guess it depends if you are controlling the mount a long distance away from the obs.

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If you are using Eqmod. Why not use a WiFi gamepad instead of the SW hand control?

 

Nigel

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12 hours ago, Garethr said:

Tried to update software on handset from V3.25 by pressing 0 and 8 on power up and get V1.7 which I believe is correct but still no PC connection.

The most current version of the Synscan firmware is v3.39.05, the v1.7 refers to the handsets bootloader firmware.

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That is interesting Peter I never thought about the v 1.7 being the bootloader firmware version.

I suppose it would be better for Gareth to update that first to the latest V3.3 as it may influence how the latest handset firmware is loaded.

Where are you finding V 3.39.05 from?... I can only find V3.39.03 on the skywatcher updates website.

Sandy.

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14 hours ago, Garethr said:

From PC is USB to serial RS232 with FTDI chipset.  This works as I can control the mount and now have 2 of these for some reason both of which will talk to the mount.  From these I needed a RS232 to ST4 to connect to the handset.  This seems to be where it goes wrong, no connection to handset. replaced RS232 to ST4 and same again.  Gut feeling is it's the final connection to handset that's the issue.  Wanted to check if there was anything else possibly wrong.  Have tried Direct to PC  no good and Esc on handset for 5 sec to go back to normal operation.  GRRRRRRRR

 

Gareth 

Hi Gareth,

The 2 USB to serial RS232 with FTDI Chipset Cables are used in place of the handset, and plug into the mount via the same connector as the original handset cable... therefore you cannot also connect the handset.

The handset does not have any ST4 connection capability.

What you can do is connect the handset to the PC using the same update cable used for software update and then connect it to the mount using the original curly lead. Then you can control the scope via the computer (EQMod or Stellarium or some other planetarium package) by placing the handset in PC Direct Mode... but you will need to tell the control package it is connected in this manner.

I believe that the handset Slew buttons will still work in this mode but it's not recommended you operate this way as they will over-ride the control from the planetarium package and will render any positional calibration you have made under that package void/useless since there is no feedback from the mount on the earlier mounts.

Good luck with the software updating.

Edited by Lonestar70

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1 hour ago, Lonestar70 said:

That is interesting Peter I never thought about the v 1.7 being the bootloader firmware version.

I suppose it would be better for Gareth to update that first to the latest V3.3 as it may influence how the latest handset firmware is loaded.

Where are you finding V 3.39.05 from?... I can only find V3.39.03 on the skywatcher updates website.

Sandy.

The latest version can be found here

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I had to purchase  a FTDI Serial to Usb converter to update my Synscan HS.
My original converter bleeped  driver loaded, but  Win.10 rejected  the Prolific driver.
I use Eqmod, but I want to keep the Handset firmware up to date in case I ever sell the Mount.
At the moment My SW Tripod, and the Handset are unemployed :icon_biggrin:.

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If you intend to use EQMOD then you really should avoid actively using the handcontroller - EQMOD is designed as a handcontroller replacement and requires sole control of the mount - things can get compromised if the handcontroller in PC-Direct mode independently attempts to slew. 

As Nigel has already noted most folks find a gamepad (wired or wireless) the best solution for EQMOD control (as well as the joystick you get a load of buttons can be customised to your EQMOD functions)

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15 hours ago, barkis said:

I had to purchase  a FTDI Serial to Usb converter to update my Synscan HS.
My original converter bleeped  driver loaded, but  Win.10 rejected  the Prolific driver.
I use Eqmod, but I want to keep the Handset firmware up to date in case I ever sell the Mount.
At the moment My SW Tripod, and the Handset are unemployed :icon_biggrin:.

Hi Ron.

Yes the old Prolific driver problem created an issue for a lot of us.

I think the 2 cables Gareth has are the EQdirect cable, since he states he can control the mount using them but without the handset connected.

These are not the same as the one needed for the firmware updates though since it would need to have the RJ11 connector to fit the handset rather than the DB9 used on the EQ6.

It does get a bit confusing for new users.

 

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1 hour ago, Cornelius Varley said:

The latest version can be found here

Thanks for that Peter... odd that it does not show up on the Skywatcher software download site I linked above.

Ho Hum... such is life.

Best regards

 

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Hi Guys.  Reading the comments will try to respond to all ideas covered. 

Yes the V1.7 is the handset is the bootloader version and I think all handsets are the same. 

Disconnecting from the mount and using that power supply did not work, sadly. 

I have 2 cables that can talk direct to the mount both supplied by FLO ( not sure how I ended up with 2 )

I also bought another cable from FLO last week after emails to Martin and this is an RS232 to ST4 to enable handset connection, When this didn't work I bought another from fleabay as a test cable again RS232 to ST4 

No matter which combination I try nothing will connect to the handset but will connect to the mount no problem.

The reason for using the handset to slew to a flats panel is I find EQMOD keeps trying to change either my park position which is not the normal pointing North and counterweights down due to the Obsy roof.  Also I've had problems with EQMOD suddenly deciding I live in the Southern Hemisphere which plays havoc when using ATP to point and platesolve.  

WIFI game pad again relies on EQMOD and needs a usb port which I'm running out of despite USB hub

Either both RS232 to ST4 cables are faulty or a bad connection at the handset.   

Still frustrated.

 

Gareth 

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