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kookoo_gr

PoleMaster equivalent software

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The last months i've been testing with INDI/EKOS and i fell in love with its polar alignment tool, it is similar with polemaster and the PA i get is amazing. Unfortunately since it has some issues with drivers for my equipment i am thinking of going back to Win but my biggest pet peeve is the polar alignment of my mount. I don't want to spend money on another camera right now so i am interested in software that can achieve the same thing like polemaster with the use of my imaging camera, i know there is the pro version of sharpcap but i don't think it can use the atik 383l+. I would like any suggestions about an equivalent software for polemaster.

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37 minutes ago, kookoo_gr said:

The last months i've been testing with INDI/EKOS and i fell in love with its polar alignment tool, it is similar with polemaster and the PA i get is amazing. Unfortunately since it has some issues with drivers for my equipment i am thinking of going back to Win but my biggest pet peeve is the polar alignment of my mount. I don't want to spend money on another camera right now so i am interested in software that can achieve the same thing like polemaster with the use of my imaging camera, i know there is the pro version of sharpcap but i don't think it can use the atik 383l+. I would like any suggestions about an equivalent software for polemaster.

Sharpcap depends on your FOV, not necessarily just the camera.  Some forum members say they have used it at more than the recommended 2.5 degree field of view, but I tried a number of times and never had any success.  I gauge accuracy on repeatable results, with a consistent outcome meaning it worked.  However, I found when doing multiple alignments that I got inconsistencies in the  results which did not fill me with confidence.  On the other hand, using Polemaster I find that once the first alignment is complete I can re-run it and it will show the same result.

Personally, imaging with a 8" RC as I assume you do, I'd be more inclined to do a drift align.

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You could try Static Polar Align in PHD2. It uses a similar algorithm to PoleMaster. I use it with my RC8 and ASI1600 imaging cam which has a similar sensor size to the Atik 383L. Should be able to connect in PHD2  through theASCOM driver. Tutorials here: https://openphdguiding.org/polar-alignment-tool-video-tutorials/

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On 21/11/2018 at 15:30, RayD said:

I gauge accuracy on repeatable results, with a consistent outcome meaning it worked. 

If you search SGL you will find a very well written thread that compares Polemaster and Sharpcap and it showed there was very little difference between the 2.

 SharpCapvsPolemaster by StuartJPP  

Ok it may differ depending on the camera/lens used but on the whole Sharpcap Polar Align was consistent.

In the end its personal preference 🙂

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15 minutes ago, stash_old said:

Ok it may differ depending on the camera/lens used but on the whole Sharpcap Polar Align was consistent.

Yes this is what I noted.  Sharpcap, to be consistent, needs a FOV of between 1 and 2.5 degrees (this is their requirement, not mine).  Others have had success outside this, I didn't.  Polemaster works independent of the imaging train so FOV is irrelevant.

As you say, personal preference, there is no right or wrong, just what works for you.

Edited by RayD

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3 hours ago, RayD said:

Yes this is what I noted.  Sharpcap, to be consistent, needs a FOV of between 1 and 2.5 degrees (this is their requirement, not mine).  Others have had success outside this, I didn't.  Polemaster works independent of the imaging train so FOV is irrelevant.

As you say, personal preference, there is no right or wrong, just what works for you.

I’m sure I read somewhere that sharpcap are working on an increased Fov update, can’t remember where I read  that though.

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6 minutes ago, bottletopburly said:

I’m sure I read somewhere that sharpcap are working on an increased Fov update, can’t remember where I read  that though.

That would be a great move.  

I'm not knocking the software, far from it, I think it is great and use it all the time for video capture, but it does rely on a FOV range for the PA routine to work, which is fine.  The Polemaster doesn't have this restriction obviously as it comes as its own camera, which naturally comes at a price.

All my point is, is that Sharpcap isn't the all encompassing solution as is sometimes portrayed (not saying that is the case here) as it does have parameters that need to be met for it to work well which it does very well when they are.

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1 hour ago, RayD said:

That would be a great move.  

I'm not knocking the software, far from it, I think it is great and use it all the time for video capture, but it does rely on a FOV range for the PA routine to work, which is fine.  The Polemaster doesn't have this restriction obviously as it comes as its own camera, which naturally comes at a price.

All my point is, is that Sharpcap isn't the all encompassing solution as is sometimes portrayed (not saying that is the case here) as it does have parameters that need to be met for it to work well which it does very well when they are.

Yes , I use it with my qhy mini guide scope luckily I’m on a pier so not to much trouble now getting within fov limit ,but could be frustrating if I had on a tripod , bigger fov would be more helpful. 

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On 21/11/2018 at 19:15, kens said:

You could try Static Polar Align in PHD2

+1 for this tool. It's so easy to use and gets you nicely aligned.

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I and others have used Sharpcap polar alignment with Polemaster as the camera - that's something like a 12 degree FOV. But to use Sharpcap with a very small FOV such as you would have on the imaging camera it may need more, fainter, stars in its database in order to plate solve. Since it can currently plate solve (the brighter stars) within 7 degrees of NCP that could be a lot of stars to add.

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