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KevS

Anybody Playing Tonight?

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I'm happy then.  It's the first one I've ever caught on camera :)

James

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24 minutes ago, JamesF said:

Does this look like it?

africano.png.9676a547027593b3dbe2e3baae3dbc9a.png

James

That looks exactly like it! 

Your camera is at the same angle as mine!!!!

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Right, ten more minutes to grab my last Ha sub and that's about as late as I want to take it tonight.

James

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Going to have to call it a night. Cloud started rolling in. 

Imaging since 10.30pm but for some reason my subs don't look great. Even shorter 3 minute subs don't look as round as the last two clear nights, not sure why as guiding looks the same, they're not exactly elongated or oval, just not as rounded for some reason so I'm not sure I'll be able to use them.

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I was in the process of shutting up the observatory just as the cloud started to come over, so I don't feel bad about stopping.

Hopefully I should have another hour and a half of Ha on M27, and a couple of subs of comet Africano into the bargain.

I'm going to have to put the flattener/reducer on the Photoline 72 (used for the comet shots) though.  The stars are quite shockingly bad in the outer third of the frame.

James

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Still clear here and just finishing off a set of 50 SII 120s subs of the Cygnus Loop nothing like as good as Ha and OIII where 30s was enough.  I'm leaving it running and going to bed - had a very busy but successful day.  Night all...

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Still clear here, cloud heading this way but slow moving, leaving mount running and having a couple of hours snoozing.

Dave

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Cloud arrived and showers forecast later....Calling it a night. It's been interesting for me. Imaging NGC 891 at 600s subs. Getting much better detail at longer exposures. Also using AOG to keep image centre. At 2800mm FL I think it needs it as using separate guide scope, the image would drift.

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Finally giving up, lost faith in forecasts. Pleasant dreams to all.

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Still clear here, but just packing up as I have my new bathroom fit being started tomorrow and I'll be too knackered to get up for that if I don't get a few zzzzs in now. Pleased to have bagged 50x5min L subs on ngc7331

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8 hours ago, JamesF said:

You're certain it's a software issue, Dave?  Not perhaps a loose cable or anything like that?

James

Pretty well, but I'll be looking into it today. I had USB problems with my old laptop, but this is a new computer.

In any case I want to get some new calibration frames so will try to deal with both.

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Reading all these posts of people who have been imaging all makes me feel even more frustrated. Feels like being outside a really great party and not being allowed in.

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Got all set-up last night, guiding calibrated then in came the clouds... Not what Clear Outside was telling me! Hope other had better luck.

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3 minutes ago, DaveS said:

Reading all these posts of people who have been imaging all makes me feel even more frustrated. Feels like being outside a really great party and not being allowed in.

Hi Dave, I think most of us have been there. After I installed my observatory 3 years ago, I had issue after issue with USB drop outs for over 2 years. All would work fine one night, or even a run of nights, then suddenly wouldn't play the next night. Everything was permanantly set up so nothing would be changed between sessions, but one or more of camera, mount, focuser, PHD2, etc., would suddenly just stop working, i.e. would not connect at all, or would drop out after a few minutes, or even seconds...!! I'd changed USB cables (make length, etc.) several times, added an extra powered hub to split traffic over 2 USB ports, each of which initially seemed to be the solution, but the problems would return. Last year I change the obs laptop, which definitely improved things and earlier this year I changed my mount's serial to USB Prolific cable to the FTDI version, since when I've had completely trouble free operation (I'm touching wood everywhere now as I've probably just jinxed everything).

I hope that you can find a solution, as I know how crazy it drives you messing with an unresponsive rig on a rare UK clear moonless night.

Good luck, Geof

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Yeah, I know enough to realise that where the real problem is, is not where it appears to be.

Time for a Hard Reset methinks

IMG_20190902_091452.thumb.jpg.03a2c72432d774f260ffef6414e662bc.jpg

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I used to have the same problem Geof.  That was when I had a computer in the warm room and USB cables through ducting to the pier head and a USB hub running a seemingly vast collection of Windows software.  Seems a lot more reliable now I only have very short USB cables from a Raspberry Pi on the mount/imaging rig and running Linux INDI drivers and indiserver.  Connected to indoors desktop by WiFi and running KStars/Ekos.  It's just that it's a whole new system to learn.  Getting there though and seems a much better setup.

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25 minutes ago, Gina said:

I used to have the same problem Geof.  That was when I had a computer in the warm room and USB cables through ducting to the pier head and a USB hub running a seemingly vast collection of Windows software.  Seems a lot more reliable now I only have very short USB cables from a Raspberry Pi on the mount/imaging rig and running Linux INDI drivers and indiserver.  Connected to indoors desktop by WiFi and running KStars/Ekos.  It's just that it's a whole new system to learn.  Getting there though and seems a much better setup.

Gina, I think that prety much mirrors my experience with the observatory. For over 3 years I used to set up and break down each night with my laptop in a taptop tent and USB cables running direct to each of the rigs components and it never missed a beat. 3 years ago I spent several grand on the observatory and much better AP mount, with power and USB cables routed through trunking under the floor from the warm room to the pier. From the get go I had connectivity issues; it drove me near insane. Fingers crossed all (well mostly) it seems to behave itself now.

Unlike you I'm not sufficiently computer savy to mess with Rasberry PI, I just wanted the standard method to work the same as it all did when I didn't have the observatory. C'set la vie...

Geof

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2 hours ago, DaveS said:

Time for a Hard Reset methinks

You've got the right tool for the job Dave 😂

Dave

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1 minute ago, Davey-T said:

You've got the right tool for the job Dave 😂

Dave

Of course given his tribulations with the kit recently you know how it would end:  Dave picks up the hammer and swings.  The head flies off, bounces off the windscreen of his new car, smashing it, and then lands on his toes leaving him in plaster and unable to get outside imaging all winter...

James

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That sounds about right.

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7 minutes ago, DaveS said:

That sounds about right.

If you can keep your sense of humour when those all around are loosing theirs then you'll be an astro' imager my son 😂

Dave

Edited by Davey-T
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Yeah, I guess my sense of humour is just about coming back. Trouble is I'm not such a computer geek as to not be floundering around in the dark.

I have had an email reply from the ASA support so we'll see if they can shed more light on the problem.

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5 minutes ago, DaveS said:

Yeah, I guess my sense of humour is just about coming back. Trouble is I'm not such a computer geek as to not be floundering around in the dark.

This genuinely is a problem, I think.  Not just for you, but for most people.  Computers and software are massively complex systems, yet the likes of astro-imagers need to be able to get them to work and debug them when they don't.  You don't expect to have to plug in to the EMU and diagnose the issue if your car starts misfiring on one cylinder or won't change out of "sport" mode, yet you're in the same ballpark.

It's really not easy.

To give Ekos/INDI it's due (and I am not in any way suggesting that you should consider changing to them :) it is very good at telling you what it's doing and what might have gone wrong when the inevitable happens.  Even then though, it does rely on the user understanding what they've been told and misunderstandings are all too easy, especially when words can have more than one meaning and the correct one is not obvious from the context.

James

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I was playing last night, and results from said play shown below;

GRS on show on Jupiter;

AB3621D1-14AC-4080-A3E7-0FDABF10F42A.thumb.jpeg.3e6b45833b007e50530ae6250cb2eb12.jpeg

The ringed jewel of Saturn;

132F1754-4975-416B-9999-7E8C395BAA8E.thumb.jpeg.3a68800aff554c11ae467f5e04ee6f6a.jpeg

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