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rwg

SharpCap - free Astro Webcam Capture Software

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Asi recommend gamma at 50...

Maybe try that next time

 Interesting. It does increase detail slightly but it doesn't seem to correct the problem I'm having. Thanks for the tip

As the the planetary shots, I'm seeing no improvement with a gain/gamma increase. Even a test with 100% gain, I see the banding striations.

This is the method I use to get the shots:

  • Capture with Sharpcap
  • Pre-process in PIPP because AVIs straight from sharpcap don't seem to work with AS2
  • Stack in AutoStakkert 2
  • Processes in Registax 6

Is there any way I can upload my settings used in sharpcap?

Many thanks, Joel.

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I tried gamma at 50% last night and the stacked images were really washed out; i need to do a side by side comparison of the various levels of gamma when everything else is constant.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 Interesting. It does increase detail slightly but it doesn't seem to correct the problem I'm having. Thanks for the tip

As the the planetary shots, I'm seeing no improvement with a gain/gamma increase. Even a test with 100% gain, I see the banding striations.

This is the method I use to get the shots:

  • Capture with Sharpcap
  • Pre-process in PIPP because AVIs straight from sharpcap don't seem to work with AS2
  • Stack in AutoStakkert 2
  • Processes in Registax 6

Is there any way I can upload my settings used in sharpcap?

Many thanks, Joel.

Hi Joel,

some suggestions for you

* if you are saving the capture as AVI, try selecting 'SER' output instead - you may need to go to the raw mode to do this. I remembered this morning that SharpCap applies I420 colour space compression when saving an AVI from QHY, ZWO or other non-directshow cameras. This is good for halving the size of the AVI file, but might be causing the problem you are seeing. The SER file output is completely unprocessed.

* Sharpcap can create a capture settings file for each capture - it's saved alongside the output file. It's just a text file, so you can edit it with notepad and paste the contents here. If you are not seeing these created then there is a setting in the menus to turn the create on.

If you have problems with the SER file trick then I can put together a build of SharpCap for you to test with the AVI compression disabled - just PM me your email address to send it to.

cheers,

Robin

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Thanks for the advice Robin,

Here are some quick results, roughly 1000 good frames stacked/processed

SER (RAW x16) image: http://i.imgur.com/ZvfY16U.png

AVI image: http://i.imgur.com/DWvkEEH.png

The SER files definitely fixes my banding issue, but seems a bit pixelated.

Capture details for SER:

[ZWO ASI120MC]

Output Format=SER file
Binning=1
Capture Area=320x240
ColourSpace=RAW16 (Debayer Preview)
Sensor Temp=20
Turbo USB=40(Auto)
White Bal (B)=95
White Bal ®=52
Brightness=0
Gain=25
Gamma=50
Pan=480
Tilt=360
Flip Image=None
Exposure (ms)=0.013937

Capture details for AVI:

[ZWO ASI120MC]

Output Format=AVI files (*.avi)
Binning=1
Capture Area=320x240
ColourSpace=RGB24
Sensor Temp=20
Turbo USB=40(Auto)
White Bal (B)=95
White Bal ®=52
Brightness=0
Gain=20
Gamma=50
Pan=480
Tilt=360
Flip Image=None
Exposure (ms)=0.013937

I'l go ahead and PM you my email address to see if your fix works at all. I appreciate your help with this here, it would be good to use SharpCap as my software of choice again!

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Hi Joel,

thanks for the detailed info - I have just emailed you a new test build with AVI compression turned off, let's hope that fixes the problem.

In the first image (the SER one) it looks like the debayer hasn't quite worked correctly - you can still see the bayer pattern in the final image. This may be something that could be fixed by different settings in your stacking software or possibly trying a different stacking program (although if the AVI tweak fixes it then not really worth worrying about).

cheers,

Robin

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Robin,

Didn't have a whole lot of spare time last night, so here is a quick attempt at Mars with the AVI compression disabled version: http://i.imgur.com/mn5250C.png

Log:

[ZWO ASI120MC]
Output Format=AVI files (*.avi)
Binning=1
Capture Area=320x240
ColourSpace=RGB24
Sensor Temp=18.5
Turbo USB=40(Auto)
White Bal (B)=95
White Bal ®=52
Brightness=0
Gain=0
Gamma=50
Pan=408
Tilt=546
Flip Image=None
Exposure (ms)=0.031905

There is indeed an improvement without too much of a file size increase, however I haven't managed to figure out the SER Bayer problem quiet yet, I will have to research that another time.

Thanks very much for taking the time to fix that little compression issue, is there any more detailed scripts of info I can pass on to potentially pinpoint the problem, perhaps from the ZWO camera itself?

Joel.

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Hi everyone....hope someone might be able to help me out here?

I'm using astroeq and eqmod. 

I start in the home position and then slew to a target. Looking through the viewfinder, the target is not centered...which is to be expected.

My problem is, when I come to use the eqmod controls, to correct, the N,S,W,E buttons don't do anything. I cant move the scope at all. I can move it manually but this defeats the object.

I haven't got a game controller yet so have to use those buttons.

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Hi everyone....hope someone might be able to help me out here?

I'm using astroeq and eqmod. 

I start in the home position and then slew to a target. Looking through the viewfinder, the target is not centered...which is to be expected.

My problem is, when I come to use the eqmod controls, to correct, the N,S,W,E buttons don't do anything. I cant move the scope at all. I can move it manually but this defeats the object.

I haven't got a game controller yet so have to use those buttons.

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Hi everyone....hope someone might be able to help me out here?

I'm using astroeq and eqmod. 

I start in the home position and then slew to a target. Looking through the viewfinder, the target is not centered...which is to be expected.

My problem is, when I come to use the eqmod controls, to correct, the N,S,W,E buttons don't do anything. I cant move the scope at all. I can move it manually but this defeats the object.

I haven't got a game controller yet so have to use those buttons.

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Hi everyone....hope someone might be able to help me out here?

I'm using astroeq and eqmod. 

I start in the home position and then slew to a target. Looking through the viewfinder, the target is not centered...which is to be expected.

My problem is, when I come to use the eqmod controls, to correct, the N,S,W,E buttons don't do anything. I cant move the scope at all. I can move it manually but this defeats the object.

I haven't got a game controller yet so have to use those buttons.

Not sure if this is an astroeq issue or ascom/eqmod? Anyone had similar.

Thanks, Howard

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Robin,

Didn't have a whole lot of spare time last night, so here is a quick attempt at Mars with the AVI compression disabled version: http://i.imgur.com/mn5250C.png

Log:

[ZWO ASI120MC]
Output Format=AVI files (*.avi)
Binning=1
Capture Area=320x240
ColourSpace=RGB24
Sensor Temp=18.5
Turbo USB=40(Auto)
White Bal ( B)=95
White Bal ®=52
Brightness=0
Gain=0
Gamma=50
Pan=408
Tilt=546
Flip Image=None
Exposure (ms)=0.031905

There is indeed an improvement without too much of a file size increase, however I haven't managed to figure out the SER Bayer problem quiet yet, I will have to research that another time.

Thanks very much for taking the time to fix that little compression issue, is there any more detailed scripts of info I can pass on to potentially pinpoint the problem, perhaps from the ZWO camera itself?

Joel.

Glad that the new version worked for you - I will have to release a new update with that change in as the compression obviously causes more problems than it cures!

Not sure that there is any problem with the camera or SharpCap with the raw mode SER captures - your sample just looked like it was not properly debayered - perhaps using the wrong pattern or similar.

cheers,

Robin

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Hi everyone....hope someone might be able to help me out here?

I'm using astroeq and eqmod. 

I start in the home position and then slew to a target. Looking through the viewfinder, the target is not centered...which is to be expected.

My problem is, when I come to use the eqmod controls, to correct, the N,S,W,E buttons don't do anything. I cant move the scope at all. I can move it manually but this defeats the object.

I haven't got a game controller yet so have to use those buttons.

Not sure if this is an astroeq issue or ascom/eqmod? Anyone had similar.

Thanks, Howard

Probably best to find or start a separate thread to talk about EQMOD. I do know that the default speed for the movement when you press the buttons is very slow (sidereal rate). You need to select a higher rate or hold the button down quite a long time to see any movement.

cheers,

Robin

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Robin

I am trying to instal sharpcap on my new(ish) laptop and have run into a problem.

It is running windows 7 and I am trying to instal the latest version on the website: 2.1.915.

When I run the installer, it puts up a message box to say I need to instal Net.framework 4.0.  This should be ready-installed on windows 7, but I downloaded the MS installer for it anyway and ran the repair option.  However, after the reboot, the sharpcap installer is still saying that I need to instal Net.framework 4.0.

Any ideas as to what might be causing the problem?

[Apologies if this issue has been addressed previously in this thread, but in truth I have not waded through all 39 pages to check :icon_redface:.]

Thanks.

Edited by Demonperformer

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Robin

I am trying to instal sharpcap on my new(ish) laptop and have run into a problem.

It is running windows 7 and I am trying to instal the latest version on the website: 2.1.915.

When I run the installer, it puts up a message box to say I need to instal Net.framework 4.0.  This should be ready-installed on windows 7, but I downloaded the MS installer for it anyway and ran the repair option.  However, after the reboot, the sharpcap installer is still saying that I need to instal Net.framework 4.0.

Any ideas as to what might be causing the problem?

[Apologies if this issue has been addressed previously in this thread, but in truth I have not waded through all 39 pages to check :icon_redface:.]

Thanks.

Not one I've encountered before :(

This is just a quick suggestion as I don't have time to look into the error properly just now - you should be able to just copy the files of the latest SharpCap builds across from another machine to your laptop (if you've installed it on another machine). You won't get the start menu shortcut or anything, but running SharpCap.exe should work - as long as you really do have .NET 4.

If you haven't managed to install it on any other machines, this other trick might help : Get an administrative command prompt (click start, type 'cmd', right click 'cmd.exe' and select run as administrator). In that command prompt run this command : msiexec -a c:\path\to\sharpcap.msi (obviously replace the c:\path\to\sharpcap.msi with the real path to and location of the sharpcap msi file). The -a does an 'administrative' install, which means 'just copy the files, don't do any of the other install stuff'.

Hope this helps - I will try to look into what might be the real cause when I get some time.

Robin

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I got this error after a new install of windows but just installed the .net thing and it all worked perfectly then.

Jd

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Thanks for that, Robin.

I will install it on my desktop and then do a copy and see what happens - if it doesn't run, then presumably that would indicate a problem with the NET instal [although I have a suspicion I need that to run something else that does work on the laptop (EQMOD? ATP? Not sure!)] - and let you know.

The clauses in that sentence got away from me a bit, but I'm sure you get the gist.

Thanks.

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Managed to have a quick look into what is going on and it turns out that Windows 7 only has .NET 3.5 installed by default, while SharpCap 2 needs at least .NET 4.0. If you download and install .NET 4 or 4.5 then you should be fine.

cheers,

Robin

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Managed to have a quick look into what is going on and it turns out that Windows 7 only has .NET 3.5 installed by default, while SharpCap 2 needs at least .NET 4.0. If you download and install .NET 4 or 4.5 then you should be fine.

cheers,

Robin

This is correct. .NET 4.0 was not out yet at the moment of release of Windows 7.

.NET 4.0 comes default with Windows 8.  .NET 4.5 still needs to be installed manually.

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OK, this has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride, but in case it helps anyone else, here is what has happened.

When I ran the install program for Net 4.0, it only gave me the option to "repair", from which I assumed it was already installed. I can only deduce that I had installed a version that was not "(FULL)" and that it was repairing the version that I had installed rather than upgrading to the full version.  When I downloaded Net 4.5.1 and ran it, the dialogue box saying I needed to install Net disappeared.

However, when I ran the sharpcap msi, it displayed an "installing" dialogue box for a couple of minutes and then gave me a message that the installation had been "interrupted" before it could be completed and I would need to run it again.  This happened on each of the three occasions I tried to run it.

So I tried installing it on my desktop (where everything worked fine) and copied the folder "Sharpcap2" onto my laptop, as advised above.

When I ran the program, it fired up, but when I tried to get it to talk to my neximage camera, it crashed producing the following exception details:


Exception type
System.FormatException
Index (zero based) must be greater than or equal to zero and less than the size of the argument list.

Target site
System.text.stringbuilder.AppendFormat(System.IFormatProvider.System.String.System.Object[])

Source
mscorlib

Stack Trace
at System.Text.Stringbuilder.AppendFormat(IFormatProvider provider.Stringformat.object[]args)

HResult
-2146233033



So I deleted the folder again and tried running the installation program again, but this time I ran it so that it would only be available to me, rather than everyone using the machine.  This time it installed perfectly and is now happily talking to the neximage camera.

The above is offered on a "what" basis, with no real attempt to understand "why".  Hope it may be of some use to someone.

Thanks.

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Ok, that starts to make sense - there are two versions of .NET 4 - a full version and a 'client profile' lite version. Microsoft's goal was to give a version that was smaller to installer, but actually they just created confusion :(

SharpCap requires the full version of .NET 4 (can't quite recall why, I think it may be Basler camera support).

Not quite sure how or why the installation got wedged, but glad to hear that the 'single user' install worked and everything is fine now!

Robin

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What a great programme - using on mac via bootcamp...

Ive been searching the net but can't find info on LX mode in Sharpcap. DO I need to use it? what does it do?

I use a Microsoft Life Cam Studio and am about to mod a Logitech C615 - do i need to do anything to the camera?

Thanks

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Glad that you like SharpCap.

SharpCap does support LX mode - on the SPC900 and a couple of other cameras the LX mode will be enabled by default and the camera will appear twice in the menu (once for LX mode and one for non-LX).

For other cameras you can enable LX mode from the menu (at the bottom of the options menu). Just open the camera and then choose that option. After that the camera will appear in the cameras menu with an LX mode version. You will just need to make sure that the LX modification is compatible with the SPC900 one so that SharpCap can control the frames properly.

cheers,

Robin

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Another SharpCap update is ready to download and install

Sharpcap 2.1.932 is now available for download.
 

  • Improved and redesigned Start capture form - more logical and easier to use
  • Fix issue with crashes related to sequence of single frame captures
  • Workarounds for some buggy webcam drivers - devices may now work but preview filters, focus score and histogram will still be unavailable
  • Turn off compression in saved AVI files for ZWO/QHY/Basler cameras - was causing stacking artifacts
  • ZWO ASI SDK now installed with SharpCap, SharpCap can now access ZWO cameras in both SDK mode and DirectShow mode without close/restart
  • Several bug fixes from crash reports - thank you for taking the time to send in bug reports.

I will push this out via auto-update in a few days.

Enjoy 1.gif

Robin

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Hello Robin,

I don't have a problem with SharpCap 2/pylon 4 (apart from GenICam=8 bits only)

SharpCap 2_0_816 opening Basler Camera (non LX mode) - pylon 2.3 API/SDK with .NET installed.

(A very polite) crash as soon as Basler selection clicked in "Cameras" sub-menu.

I hope the error report arrives OK. If not, see below or ask me for specific details as shown in the error report.

Some content from Error report #97356

System.MissingMethodException

Method not found: 'Boolean PylonC.NET.HandleBase.op_Inequality(PylonC.NET.HandleBase, PylonC.NET.HandleBase)'.

Void Grab() @ PylonC.NETSupportLibrary.ImageProvider

rplly

Dear rplly and rwg,

I have got a Basler 1600-14fm and faced the same question of 10s limit of exposure time.

Could you please send me some detail info about your solution such as the external circuits and setup of SharpCap?

My email is :tbb1@sina.com

Thank you!

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Hi tbb1,

I think rplly's idea was to use the 'TriggerActivation' parameter on the scout - by setting the camera up for external triggering and then swapping 'TriggerActivation' between rising and falling edge then it ought to be possible to get long exposures without external circuitry. I'm not sure if he ever wrote any code to test this out, but I believe he got it to work bit changing parameters manually in the Pylon Viewer application.

Hope that this helps,

Robin

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