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With new mount and upgraded scope features, now looking to venture into imaging.
Before I start, I'm not looking to get feedback on polar alignment, mono guidecam, better imaging cameras, etc; this is more a 'dummies guide' setup discussion! I'm not expecting to get great images at this stage, just more the options available, getting over some issues, so that I can jump outside on a clear night with an ideal, foolproof(!), setup for either imaging or visual as time would permit and what may work best for me. As you may guess from the topic name, I'm a mac user (Macbook Pro) and would rather keep to this if possible (whilst I do have Windows (and Ubuntu) via parallels, I'd rather not use these).
I've got a setup which has worked well for visual, and obviously want to have a couple of 'staple' setups that I can use depending on expectations of night observing or imaging. So far, the best one for me has been the Skywatcher Wifi Synscan controller, which has worked a treat with my Android phone - I use the Synscan app to complete alignment and GOTO stars/planets/DSO etc, or Stellarium_plus after completing alignment. This removes the need for the Synscan Handset and any USB cables to the mount altogether. But I don't know if this will work for guiding.
That then brings me to my issue on mac - connecting USB(A) between Macbook and Handset, I've attempted to control the mount through Stellarium. Trying each of the available connections (/dev/tty.usbsetial-1420, /dev/cu.usbsetial-1420, and just for sake of it, the /dev/tty.Bluetooth-Incoming-Port and /dev/cu.Bluetooth-Incoming-Port) in the dropdown menu under DeviceSettings/SerialPort, I cannot get the mount to connect (well, more like selecting the telescope and clicking the "Start" on the TelescopeControl just results in the spinning icon and I have to Force-Quit Stellarium and start again with the same result each time. Annoyingly (for fellow mac users!), Parallels/Windows/Stellarium connects and controls the mount fine! As the mount is the newer "pro" type, I also have a USB connection directly under the hand-controller RJ45 and AutoGuider ST4 sockets, but using this still results in the same issue. Another issue I have seen is that when I unplug the USB from the computer when connected to the handset, the date on the controller jumps significantly - for example, last night at ~23:30, I was transported through the local wormhole galaxy to Jan 2048 according to Synscan! Obviously unplugging isn't going to happen during a genuine session, but just wondering if this is a possible issue somewhere?!
Any other mac users connecting USB directly to the SW 'Pro' mounts?
Software wise, would folks generally suggest steering away from Stellarium towards KStars or SkySafari(Plus) for controlling the mount?
Can the Wifi dongle be used for controlling mount from computer (any OS) or do I need to go USB either to handset or directly to mount?
Is there an issue in using Mac USB to the telescope compared to 'straight' Windows (i.e. PC/laptop with Windows instead of virtual)?
Anyway, back to topic... I've a Nikon DSLR to use for primary camera at this stage, which would be triggered independently from guiding software. PHD2 is my hopeful choice of guiding software (is EKOS with KStars similar?), with T7C guide-camera on 240mm f/4 guidescope, and at this stage, I can confirm PHD2 at least connects to the camera on OS-X. There is an ST4 port on the camera, but having read several topics, I think I want to pulse-guide directly - is this correct or is ST4 best for this setup? This sorta comes back to software and connections - my understanding is one of the following cable setups for guiding (as a minimum) :
Guiding-camera => USB(A) => Macbook => PHD2 => USB(A) => SynscanHandset => AZEQ6
Guiding-camera => USB(A) => Macbook => PHD2 => USB(A) => AZEQ6
Guiding-camera => USB(A) => Macbook => PHD2 => Wifi => SynscaWifi Adapter on AZEQ6
[using ST4: ST4_on_AZEQ6 => Guiding-camera => USB(A) => Macbook => PHD2] (no additional connections needed if ST4 is used)
Additionally, I'd like to use an observatory package, say Stellarium/KStars/SkySafari, to select objects and drive the mount, then use guiding software to keep good 'tracking'.
Where in this train does EQMac fit in, or when is it used?
What about the 2019 addition to EQMod (ASCOM Alpaca)? Can this be used or is it already in other packages?!
For Windows users, how does EQMod fit in (if I go down route of getting Windows laptop for controlling things, is the setup similar to above?
There may be bits in the above that repeat, and for that, I'm sorry, just want to get across the message that I'm new to the guiding but haven't quite settled down into the software/hardware I'm expecting to use for 'goto' and 'guiding'
For a mac user, what setup and software are folks using for guiding and observatory softwares for the newer USB-on-mount 'AZEQ6/EQ6-R Pro' mounts from SW?
Is anyone on here signed up for the SkySafari and SynScan beta testing to natively support IOS? If so how has it been going?
Hi all, as a complete beginner, who is gradually getting some kit together, the question of which Polar Alignment App I should get for my Android phone is exercising my mind. Looking at the android play store there seems to be a myriad to choose from, which do members recommend & why?
By Corne de Klerk
Hi Everyone. Hoping you can guide me in the right direction or give some advice.
I was given a Celestron Astromaster 70AZ telescope as a gift and have so far managed to locate and view Jupiter with an Android app.
I subsequently came across a youtube clip were the guy demonstrated on how to add a DSLR / mobile phone adapter to his telescope as a way to converting his budget telescope to a push / go-to by clipping his mobile phone on top of his telescope and using the star finder app, be able to locate his target and then using his finder scope. Please note that I am not trying to Astrophotography (yet).
However, I am unable to find any mounting clips / mobile phone adapters I can buy to add onto my telescope. Any suggestions or ideas how I can make this work?
Below is what I mean on how I want to attach my mobile phone on top of my telescope.
Your help will be appreciated!
So I'm referring to the main astro-softwares that you use during your sessions on your phone or tablet, and found that most of people use mainly those two softwares on their phones. Laptop versions of the software are different products and are not the focus of this topic.
So which do you use and why?
I personally have Stellarium plus, and the free version of SkySafarai, so I have an understanding of how the user-interface of both works, I have been researching the extra features in the SkySafari Pro, and have figured the following so far (please correct me if I'm wrong):
* I'm aware that both let you control your GoTo telescopes
* I personally find current version of Stellarium to be more user friendly and easier to navigate the sky manually , could be the configured settings though
* SkySafari has more options to the search bar, e.g. "Tonight's Best" based on your location, also a menu of Messier catalog with a highlight of those currently visible at your time and location, others like best deep sky objects
* SkySafari has this wonderful feature of creating an observing list, very helpful to plan your session and share and download with/from others
* Stellarium Plus has a database of around 1.69 billion stars,while SkySafari 6 Pro has around 100 milion starts (don't think it's important as most of them aren't visible in amateur telescopes, I think I read somewhere that only 25 million stars are possible to observe with our telescopes, up to 15th mag, wonder if any of you have tried to push this limit)