Date   

Re: Recomended guiding software

topboxman
 

Hi Rolando,

Only three software I know of to make dithering work with PHD2 is Nebulosity, SGPro ( http://mainsequencesoftware.com/ ) and Voyager ( http://starkeeper.it/software.htm ) and all of them work well. Disadvantage of Nebulosity is it's not an automation software but an excellent capture software. Too bad Maxim DL does not seem to want to cooperate with PHD2. Not sure about SkyX.

Peter


---In ap-gto@..., <chris1011@...> wrote :

I use PHD2 also, but it doesn't support dithering when I use MaximDL for image acquisition. How does one dither in PHD with Maxim? There is no direct connection between these two programs far as I can tell. They don't talk to each other.

Lately we are trying out SkyX imaging/guiding software as an alternative to Maxim. So far with limited success, but probably because of the steep learning curve. I'm most comfortable with MaximDL because I've used it for so many years.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Sat, Sep 14, 2019 11:21 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software



I use PHD2. I get good enough performance from it and it works great with the automation software I use ( Starkeeper Voyager).

From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 6:28 AM
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software
 
 
Hello, I just purchased an AP1100 AEL and have been using MaximDL 6.2 for image acquisition and guiding. I was wondering what most people use for guiding with their AP AE mounts? I have been using MaximDL on my non-AP mount because it can dither. I'd prefer to use PHD but dithering with MaximDL is more difficult and haven't figured out how to do it. 

One of the issues I had with my non-AP mount was the dithering recovery time took a few minutes, I never could figure out how to make it quicker. I don't foresee this to be a problem with the AP mount.

In any case this is a question about what software you use for guiding the AP 1100 with AE and why?

Thanks in advance
Claude



Re: Recomended guiding software

Dean Jacobsen
 

Claude, also take a look at using PHD2 and Sequence Generator Pro.  They are well integrated.  I have been using them for a couple of years.


Re: Recomended guiding software

Stuart Heggie <stuart.j.heggie@...>
 

Rolando, I use TSX (and CCDSoft5 + TS6 before that) and my opinion is that it is a superb autoguiding solution. With TSX you get mount and camera control in one (vs. CCDSoft5 which was only camera control hence TheSky6). TSX supports Relays and Pulseguide (and their proprietary DirectGuide for their own mounts). 


On Sat, 14 Sep 2019 at 12:42, chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:
 

I use PHD2 also, but it doesn't support dithering when I use MaximDL for image acquisition. How does one dither in PHD with Maxim? There is no direct connection between these two programs far as I can tell. They don't talk to each other.

Lately we are trying out SkyX imaging/guiding software as an alternative to Maxim. So far with limited success, but probably because of the steep learning curve. I'm most comfortable with MaximDL because I've used it for so many years.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Sat, Sep 14, 2019 11:21 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software



I use PHD2. I get good enough performance from it and it works great with the automation software I use ( Starkeeper Voyager).

From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 6:28 AM
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software
 
 
Hello, I just purchased an AP1100 AEL and have been using MaximDL 6.2 for image acquisition and guiding. I was wondering what most people use for guiding with their AP AE mounts? I have been using MaximDL on my non-AP mount because it can dither. I'd prefer to use PHD but dithering with MaximDL is more difficult and haven't figured out how to do it. 

One of the issues I had with my non-AP mount was the dithering recovery time took a few minutes, I never could figure out how to make it quicker. I don't foresee this to be a problem with the AP mount.

In any case this is a question about what software you use for guiding the AP 1100 with AE and why?

Thanks in advance
Claude



Re: Recomended guiding software

Roland Christen
 

Sounds like a solution to what I want to do with our observatory setup.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Fulbright mike.fulbright@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto
Sent: Sat, Sep 14, 2019 11:36 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software



You can use a post exposure script to dither with MaximDL and the PHD2 Dither App:

https://openphdguiding.org/phd2-dither-app/

Just create a script calling this program and set it as the post exposure script in the sequence setup.

When your script is run Maxim will pass it the full path to the filename of the image just taken.

By parsing out the index of the filename you can then do "dither every N" frames if you want.

Not the most obvious solution but I found PHD2 was a better solution for guiding for me than using Maxim so it was worth figuring out.

Michael Fulbright

On 9/14/19 12:20 PM, Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] wrote:
 
I use PHD2. I get good enough performance from it and it works great with the automation software I use ( Starkeeper Voyager).

From: ap-gto@... on behalf of Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 6:28 AM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software
 
 
Hello, I just purchased an AP1100 AEL and have been using MaximDL 6.2 for image acquisition and guiding. I was wondering what most people use for guiding with their AP AE mounts? I have been using MaximDL on my non-AP mount because it can dither. I'd prefer to use PHD but dithering with MaximDL is more difficult and haven't figured out how to do it. 

One of the issues I had with my non-AP mount was the dithering recovery time took a few minutes, I never could figure out how to make it quicker. I don't foresee this to be a problem with the AP mount.

In any case this is a question about what software you use for guiding the AP 1100 with AE and why?

Thanks in advance
Claude




Re: Recomended guiding software

Roland Christen
 

I use PHD2 also, but it doesn't support dithering when I use MaximDL for image acquisition. How does one dither in PHD with Maxim? There is no direct connection between these two programs far as I can tell. They don't talk to each other.

Lately we are trying out SkyX imaging/guiding software as an alternative to Maxim. So far with limited success, but probably because of the steep learning curve. I'm most comfortable with MaximDL because I've used it for so many years.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto]
To: Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Sat, Sep 14, 2019 11:21 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software



I use PHD2. I get good enough performance from it and it works great with the automation software I use ( Starkeeper Voyager).

From: ap-gto@... on behalf of Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 6:28 AM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software
 
 
Hello, I just purchased an AP1100 AEL and have been using MaximDL 6.2 for image acquisition and guiding. I was wondering what most people use for guiding with their AP AE mounts? I have been using MaximDL on my non-AP mount because it can dither. I'd prefer to use PHD but dithering with MaximDL is more difficult and haven't figured out how to do it. 

One of the issues I had with my non-AP mount was the dithering recovery time took a few minutes, I never could figure out how to make it quicker. I don't foresee this to be a problem with the AP mount.

In any case this is a question about what software you use for guiding the AP 1100 with AE and why?

Thanks in advance
Claude



Re: Recomended guiding software

Michael Fulbright <mike.fulbright@...>
 

You can use a post exposure script to dither with MaximDL and the PHD2 Dither App:

https://openphdguiding.org/phd2-dither-app/

Just create a script calling this program and set it as the post exposure script in the sequence setup.

When your script is run Maxim will pass it the full path to the filename of the image just taken.

By parsing out the index of the filename you can then do "dither every N" frames if you want.

Not the most obvious solution but I found PHD2 was a better solution for guiding for me than using Maxim so it was worth figuring out.

Michael Fulbright

On 9/14/19 12:20 PM, Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] wrote:
 

I use PHD2. I get good enough performance from it and it works great with the automation software I use ( Starkeeper Voyager).

From: ap-gto@... on behalf of Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 6:28 AM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software
 
 
Hello, I just purchased an AP1100 AEL and have been using MaximDL 6.2 for image acquisition and guiding. I was wondering what most people use for guiding with their AP AE mounts? I have been using MaximDL on my non-AP mount because it can dither. I'd prefer to use PHD but dithering with MaximDL is more difficult and haven't figured out how to do it. 

One of the issues I had with my non-AP mount was the dithering recovery time took a few minutes, I never could figure out how to make it quicker. I don't foresee this to be a problem with the AP mount.

In any case this is a question about what software you use for guiding the AP 1100 with AE and why?

Thanks in advance
Claude


Re: Recomended guiding software

Bill Long
 

I use PHD2. I get good enough performance from it and it works great with the automation software I use ( Starkeeper Voyager).


From: ap-gto@... on behalf of Claude Benoit isphotoman@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 6:28 AM
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject: [ap-gto] Recomended guiding software
 
 

Hello, I just purchased an AP1100 AEL and have been using MaximDL 6.2 for image acquisition and guiding. I was wondering what most people use for guiding with their AP AE mounts? I have been using MaximDL on my non-AP mount because it can dither. I'd prefer to use PHD but dithering with MaximDL is more difficult and haven't figured out how to do it. 

One of the issues I had with my non-AP mount was the dithering recovery time took a few minutes, I never could figure out how to make it quicker. I don't foresee this to be a problem with the AP mount.

In any case this is a question about what software you use for guiding the AP 1100 with AE and why?

Thanks in advance
Claude


Re: Using the GTO keypad with the Mach2

Roland Christen
 

Yes, and all the CP4 users as well.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: deanjacobsen@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto
Sent: Sat, Sep 14, 2019 1:00 am
Subject: [ap-gto] Using the GTO keypad with the Mach2

Am I correct in assuming that there will be a future keypad update for those of us who want to use the keypad with their new Mach2?

Dean Jacobsen

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Re: Using the GTO keypad with the Mach2

Terri Zittritsch
 

Thanks guys for explaining.    I just ordered the tripod, weights, keypad and am hoping for a decent date for the mach2.  

Terri


On Sep 14, 2019, at 9:43 AM, deanjacobsen@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

 

Terry,

My present keypad has version 4.19.3 firmware loaded into it and does not have a mount type Mach2 in the "mount type" menu.

If you are ordering a new keypad with your mount then I am sure your keypad will be set up for the Mach2.  I will probably have to upload new firmware to my keypad that has the Mach2 mount type.

Dean Jacobsen


Re: Using the GTO keypad with the Mach2

Dean Jacobsen
 

Terry,

My present keypad has version 4.19.3 firmware loaded into it and does not have a mount type Mach2 in the "mount type" menu.

If you are ordering a new keypad with your mount then I am sure your keypad will be set up for the Mach2.  I will probably have to upload new firmware to my keypad that has the Mach2 mount type.

Dean Jacobsen


Re: Using the GTO keypad with the Mach2

mike.hambrick@...
 

Hi Terri

I think he is referring to a keypad software update. They will normally ship the keypads with whatever the current software version is at the time they send it to you. It is probably worth asking the folks at A-P about the timing of the new software release. You will be able to download the latest version but it will be less hassle to get it already installed.


Recomended guiding software

Claude Benoit <isphotoman@...>
 

Hello, I just purchased an AP1100 AEL and have been using MaximDL 6.2 for image acquisition and guiding. I was wondering what most people use for guiding with their AP AE mounts? I have been using MaximDL on my non-AP mount because it can dither. I'd prefer to use PHD but dithering with MaximDL is more difficult and haven't figured out how to do it. 

One of the issues I had with my non-AP mount was the dithering recovery time took a few minutes, I never could figure out how to make it quicker. I don't foresee this to be a problem with the AP mount.

In any case this is a question about what software you use for guiding the AP 1100 with AE and why?

Thanks in advance
Claude


Re: Using the GTO keypad with the Mach2

Terri Zittritsch
 

Dean, what does this mean?   I just put in an order for the mach2 plus keypad?   Is the current keypad not compatible or lacking something with the mach2?

Terri


On Sep 14, 2019, at 2:00 AM, deanjacobsen@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

 

Am I correct in assuming that there will be a future keypad update for those of us who want to use the keypad with their new Mach2?

Dean Jacobsen


Using the GTO keypad with the Mach2

Dean Jacobsen
 

Am I correct in assuming that there will be a future keypad update for those of us who want to use the keypad with their new Mach2?

Dean Jacobsen


Re: APPM/SGP PLATE Solve Fail

Ray Gralak
 

I may still have an issue with the 32bit output of the
Mallincam 16cTEC.
Unfortunately there's nothing in APPM that can be changed to help. APPM can read 32-bit floating point FITS files but PlateSolve 2 apparently can't.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): http://www.astro-physics.com/index.htm?products/accessories/software/apcc/apcc
Author of PEMPro V3: https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver


-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]
Sent: Friday, September 13, 2019 5:26 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: RE: [ap-gto] APPM/SGP PLATE Solve Fail



Thx Ray, Ill update the two programs with 0.31"/Pix. I may still have an issue with the 32bit output of the
Mallincam 16cTEC. I'll keep you posted.
Dui


Re: APPM/SGP PLATE Solve Fail

Dui
 

Thx Ray, Ill update the two programs with 0.31"/Pix.  I may still have an issue with the 32bit output of the Mallincam 16cTEC.  I'll keep you posted.
Dui


Re: APPM/SGP PLATE Solve Fail

Ray Gralak
 

which should be 0.31 "/pix correct?
If so I'll input those values and see if I have better luck.
Yes, .31"/pix is definitely more than 10% from 0.41 arc-secs/pixel and would cause the error you saw. I hope this makes it clear why you should not necessarily rely on manufacturer specs to determine image scale. In this case it looks like it was off by almost 25%.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): http://www.astro-physics.com/index.htm?products/accessories/software/apcc/apcc
Author of PEMPro V3: https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver


-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]
Sent: Friday, September 13, 2019 2:16 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] APPM/SGP PLATE Solve Fail



Think we're getting closer. Just ran my M57 through Astrometry.net as suggested. Thx for suggestion.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/143686919@N04/48728726492/in/datetaken-public/

Image scale came back at 0.626 "/pix which was with DB2 on my camera. So APPM and SGP ask for unbinned
which should be 0.31 "/pix correct? If so I'll input those values and see if I have better luck.
Dui


Re: Counterweights of Mach1 in the Mach2?

Marcelo Figueroa
 

Okay, good to hear that.

Thank you,


Re: Portable Tripod for Mach2

Woody Schlom <woody@...>
 

I believe Rob died several years ago. I think somebody took over producing his tripods, but I don’t remember who. Software Bisque maybe?



I almost bought one of his super lightweight tripods when I got my Mach1. But the legs weren’t adjustable for length. I’m sure that’s one of the reasons they were so light weight.



Woody



From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Friday, September 13, 2019 10:25 AM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2





Does anyone know what happened to Rob Miller?

I’m so glad to have picked up his tripods when they were still available.
On Sep 13, 2019, at 9:00 AM, cthomp97 cthomp97@yahoo.com <mailto:cthomp97@yahoo.com> [ap-gto] <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com> > wrote:



Terri, have you considered the AP portable pier? I have the Eagle and the portable pier and like the both. Either one is quick and easy to assemble/take down and have easy attachment for the CP4. The Portable pier is much cheaper and I purchased one front someone in AstroMart for around $400 if I remember correctly.



The only downside to the portable pier is getting it level. However, it doesn't need to be level, just polar aligned.











Thanks,

Charles



Sent from mobile device.



-------- Original message --------

From: "Terri Zittritsch theresamarie11@gmail.com <mailto:theresamarie11@gmail.com> [ap-gto]" <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com> >

Date: 9/13/19 10:16 AM (GMT-06:00)

To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com>

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2





To continue discussion on a tripod for the Mach2. I was originally going to buy the AP Eagle but the discussion here has convinced me that I should at least look at the alternatives. I’ve narrowed my search down to the Losmandy folding HD tripod, the Planet wood tripod and the Avalon TPOD. It seems that people have used all of these tripods with Mach1’s with success. Part of the reason to look at alternatives is the cost, as the Eagle as-is, seems to need additional purchases to make it usable, or at least this is my impression. I am almost 6’ tall and I’ll use my mach2 for both AP and visual, and my impression is that the Eagle is quite short and I’ll want the $400 8” pier extension. My understanding is that the other tripods likely need extensions as well to make them usable for visual with long refractors, but in each case the tripod and extensions are about 1/2 the cost to acquire new.

A few questions for the A-P astronuts:



1) If I buy a non-AP tripod, is this going to force me to cobble together a way to attach the CP4 control box and/or hand controller? On that same vein, do the AP tripods provide this facility or do I have the same issue and have to cobble something together or buy another accessory? I’d really like a solution that just bolts together and is neat and tidy.

2) I’ve read that the Losmandy HD folding tripod has a bunch of sharp edges that will destroy the interior of my car if I have to transport it. Is this real or an exaggeration? I am really more concerned with my hands than car.. as my trunk has a liner and in Vt we have a truck. Roland seems to advocate the Losmandy which seems a good recommendation on build quality. The other downside of the Losmandy seems to be weight at 35 pounds (without extension and adapter). This is one beefy tripod!! given the head is heavier than this, it’s not going to be the limiting weight..

3) On the Planet, I’ve not really heard downsides other than weight and some irrational concerns with using wood. And weight is relative since it is lighter by 10 pounds than the Losmandy but some seem to have issues with the weight.

4) On the TPOD, at 15 pounds without all the adapters, seems to be the lightest. It seems very minimalist, but people have said it’s very stiff. Is there any downside to the TPOD that anyone has found? Has anyone built a setup with the mach1 here that includes extension and adapter, and can comment on experience?



I’m really looking for a solution I can just bolt together, have reasonable height for visual with a long refractor such as the tec140 and maybe tec160, and not have to make adapters, etc.





thanks,

Terri

























On Sep 12, 2019, at 7:40 PM, biker123@att.net <mailto:biker123@att.net> [ap-gto] <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com> > wrote:



A third alternative is to get a Meade Giant Field Tripod. It uses 3" diameter legs and has a large flat round top. It is rock solid and works very well for solid vibration free mounting for larger AP mounts up to 1100. I mounted the flat surface AP adaptor that takes both my 900 and 1100 mounts. I support a 6" APO refractor w SBIG STL 6303 camera or alternating with a 11" SCT with Hyperstar. I needed a tripod that would put the mount high enough so I don't have to kneel in the weeds to get to the eyepiece of the 6" reftractor. I usually set it up so the height of the top of the tripod is around 44" for the refractor. If you aren't using a long refractor you could set the tripod up lower. It will require a bit of basic metal work such as drill and taping to take the mount.



Meade uses that tripod with a lot of their heavier scopes and I suspect a lot of people bought it with their scope/mount and later upgraded to piers so you can often find these for sale on line. Note that some of the models came with extra long legs that were designed to work with their largest refractors. Make sure that you verify how long the legs are on any specific one you are buying.



Besides mine, two of my friends have one...in both cases I modified them to take their AP mount and in one case shortened the legs a bit as it was from one of the big Meade refractor versions and was too long even at the lowest height with a big SCT.



There is one safety tip I recommend though.....the spreaders are connected with steel drift pins into aluminum. They are notorious for backing out after extended opening and closing and could fall out causing the tripod to collapse. I pushed the drift pins out and replaced with stainless steel screws and lock nuts.



They work great with one caveat....since it is a true tripod (legs to all the way to the top) if you use it with a big refractor you MAY run into cases where the telescope and camera setup may get close to one leg when tracking close to zenith. You just need to watch for that in use. SCTS and shorter refractors will have no problems.



I have used mine for 17 years and no issues.









[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: APPM/SGP PLATE Solve Fail

Dui
 

Think we're getting closer.  Just ran my M57 through Astrometry.net as suggested.  Thx for suggestion. 

Image scale came back at 0.626 "/pix which was with DB2 on my camera.  So APPM and SGP ask  for unbinned which should be 0.31 "/pix correct?  If so I'll input those values and see if I have better luck. 
Dui

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