Date   

Re: Mobile Mounts

Bill Long
 

Asking AP, whom makes the Maserati of telescopes and mounts, to make a Mazda, is silly friend.

A-P is not ZWO. They are a company that hangs their hats on excellent craftsmanship. That comes at a cost.  You pay to play with their products, and if you dont want to pay for that, its not really all that harming to them as all of their products are on massive wait lists and are effectively always sold out. 

I would never want to see an AP product that erred on the side of cheap, over awesome.

But - I will indulge you. You can buy an AP1100 without encoders (the auto transmission you talked about) and you can even add them later. It is light broken down into its parts, has excellent performance to weight ratio, has excellent performance to cost ratio, and is very fun to drive -- encoders or not. So, you do not need them to make you a new product, they already have it.

So, get yourself an 1100 and be happy.
 
-Bill


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Kevin Cook <kvc3509@...>
Sent: Saturday, October 1, 2022 9:40 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mobile Mounts
 
As the OP for the original "next mount" thread, which sort of morphed into this Mobile Mounts thread, let me put what I wish for in terms that I know Roland will understand:  Whille the owners of multiple Bentleys and Ferraris can debate the merits of getting carbon-fiber cup holders, I am hoping that Roland can provide us (or at least some of us) with the AP mount equivalent of a Mazda MX-5.  Small, light, good performance-to-weight ratio, good performance-to-cost ratio, and basically fun to drive.  Yes, you can certainly provide the option of an automatic transmission for those want that, but I prefer the 5-speed manual transmission on mine, please.  Muchas gracias.

Kevin


Re: Mobile Mounts

Kevin Cook
 

As the OP for the original "next mount" thread, which sort of morphed into this Mobile Mounts thread, let me put what I wish for in terms that I know Roland will understand:  Whille the owners of multiple Bentleys and Ferraris can debate the merits of getting carbon-fiber cup holders, I am hoping that Roland can provide us (or at least some of us) with the AP mount equivalent of a Mazda MX-5.  Small, light, good performance-to-weight ratio, good performance-to-cost ratio, and basically fun to drive.  Yes, you can certainly provide the option of an automatic transmission for those want that, but I prefer the 5-speed manual transmission on mine, please.  Muchas gracias.

Kevin


Re: 1100GTO and NINA -- Meridian Flip Failure #APCC

Michael 'Mikey' Mangieri
 

The mount parked itself after the failure but in each case it was off. Sometimes about 1hr in RA sometimes both DEC and RA are off. Each time I had to release the clutches and reset the mount to the Park3 position. 


On Oct 1, 2022, at 10:17 PM, Joseph Beyer <jcbeyer2001@...> wrote:

So what attitude did you find your mount after everything went off the rails?

My Mach1/NINA setup was working perfectly with the meridian flips being triggered exactly on time...until they weren't.  I was in the middle of an imaging project so was using the same imaging sequence I'd had been for half a dozen or so nights prior and all had been great.  Absolutely nothing had changed except me saving the sequence at the end of every night to preserve the additional progress. Then one night it all comes to end end and the mount runs against the meridian stop in APCC before NINA flips it.  

In my case there has to be some mismatch of timing/imaging site (or something) as every night it's failed the mount has come to a hard stop prior to NINA's projected flip time. I was going to research things a bit more tonight but the fog's here already.

Joe 


Re: Virtual Ports - can not create

Stacey Mills
 

Hard (impossible) to believe that Eltima can't recreate this problem since it is EXTREMELY common.  I encountered it today when trying to install APCC on a laptop running Windows 7.  The Rest_API seems to solve the problem.  One minor issue I haven't figured out is how to get the API to connect to the ASCOM V2 driver automatically.  I have to hit the second "Connect" button to get it to work.  I must be missing something simple

Thanks, Stacey


Re: Mobile Mounts

Pete Mumbower
 

This sure has been a great thread to follow. I myself have a non-AE 1100 and have debated the merits of the AE upgrade. So for me and maybe others I am considering the quality of my OTA that would support the benefit of the price of AE. I do not have a PlaneWave or any other high end OTA in my arsenal, just the common mass market stuff (current a 12"f/4 newt). With budget issues imposed by the CFO(wife), I am probably better off spending the astro hobby allowance on the OTA before I upgrade the mount. Even right now in lowly SW Michigan skies my PHD guiding RMS is .31" via OAG and well beyond my OTA optical/mechanical issues.The APCC modelling is fantastic and on another level from what I worked with before, so getting the AE is a "nice to have" option.


Re: 1100GTO and NINA -- Meridian Flip Failure #APCC

Joseph Beyer
 

So what attitude did you find your mount after everything went off the rails?

My Mach1/NINA setup was working perfectly with the meridian flips being triggered exactly on time...until they weren't.  I was in the middle of an imaging project so was using the same imaging sequence I'd had been for half a dozen or so nights prior and all had been great.  Absolutely nothing had changed except me saving the sequence at the end of every night to preserve the additional progress. Then one night it all comes to end end and the mount runs against the meridian stop in APCC before NINA flips it.  

In my case there has to be some mismatch of timing/imaging site (or something) as every night it's failed the mount has come to a hard stop prior to NINA's projected flip time. I was going to research things a bit more tonight but the fog's here already.

Joe 


Re: 1100GTO and NINA -- Meridian Flip Failure #APCC

Andrew Burwell
 

I don’t have my AP mount yet, but have owned many mount models. So I’ll take a stab at explaining this as simple as I can, not knowing how much you might or might not know. Hopefully it will help you figure out the issue.

A meridian flip is nothing special. It’s just a goto command to go to a target. The reason the mount flips, is you are hopefully sending a goto command to a target that has passed the meridian, and for the mount to target it, it has to flip the orientation so it can track it down to the horizon from the meridian. 

You want to set the mount meridian limit to something like 5 degrees past the meridian. This way you can image to the meridian and past it, up to the 5 degrees. In NINA you want to set the mount to flip at 3 degrees past the meridian. This ensures you don’t send the goto command before the object has passed the meridian. Your scopes can track the object 3 degrees past the meridian this means the next goto command that is sent is to that object which is now past the meridian, but before you hit the 5 degree limit where the mount will stop tracking. 

If you issue a goto before the meridian, it will not flip. If the mount stops tracking because you hit a tracking limit before you issue the goto, it will not flip. AP mounts could have some feature that conflicts with my statements, but essentially you don’t want to issue any goto before the object has passed the meridian, and before you hit any limits that would cause it to stop tracking.

Hopefully that makes sense.

Regards,
Andrew


Re: 1100GTO and NINA -- Meridian Flip Failure #APCC

Michael 'Mikey' Mangieri
 

Ah, the joys of running systems-of-systems.  Yet again I had a flip failure, like the one previously reported.  I posted this on Discord as well.

 

Running my AP1100 mount with APCC and using the Smart Meridian Flip plugin. This issue has now occurred three times in the past couple of months. I'm not great at deciphering the logs, so I've linked them here (both the NINA and AP logs).


From what I can tell it looks like the west meridian limit (APCC setting) is triggered while the mount is in the process of a flip. I had a series of 300 sec images in the sequence. NINA reports (early) that the Smart Meridian Flip - Scope will stop tracking at 27/09/2022 23:32:18 and will flip at 27/09/2022 23:32:18. NINA starts the flip trigger at 23:27:50.7854; the last good image is downloaded at 23:28:02.0229. APCC shows the slew command at 23:28:02.718 (right after the last image is downloaded). The fault occurs at 23:28:34.55. Would like any insight into what might be happening here. Still not sure if this is a NINA problem or other issue. Thanks for taking the time to look at this - it's got me baffled; again!

 

https://www.dropbox.com/s/v8lelmsusjrm68l/APCC-2022-09-27-192929.txt?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/sobxlf6r3s9oyd7/NINA-20220927-192831-2.0.1.9001.10208.log?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/hqjkfgtmiadov12/Picture1.png?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ytxg13gypylpkr6/Picture2.png?dl=0

 

XCalRocketMan

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Michael 'Mikey' Mangieri
Sent: Saturday, September 3, 2022 11:50 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 1100GTO and NINA -- Meridian Flip Failure #APCC

 

So I tested the flip again this evening. This time I set long exposures on my camera to make sure the flip time would be within the exposure time range. NINA did what I expected. Since the next 20 minute exposure would contain the flip time and meridian limits NINA executed the flip early. Once again the whole process executed flawlessly. So I am at a loss as to way the initial problem occurred. Computers and software; gotta love them :)


Re: NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

Bill Long
 


Agreed, I have 3 of them now. 2 mono and one color.


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011@...>
Sent: Saturday, October 1, 2022 2:48 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour
 
I agree. It could have been worse. I could have had only 15 minutes. Stuck out tongue winking eye
These Sony chips are amazing.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Chris White <chris.white@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Sat, Oct 1, 2022 4:39 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

On Sat, Oct 1, 2022 at 05:19 PM, Roland Christen wrote:

https://www.astrobin.com/full/wfbzaq/0/
Pretty amazing result for only 30 minutes!

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

Chris White
 

I dabbled with CMOS on earlier offerings but until this new breed of SONY BSI chips came out I much preferred CCD.  You are correct, these new cameras are absolutely amazing.  Especially good for me as I like the dusty targets!  

Now, I think you gotta review your math lessons Roland.   You said you were taking 10 minute subs?   Just how are you gonna end up with 15 minutes???


Re: [ap-ug] NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

Pete Lardizabal
 

Roland,

You’re pretty good at this…

😁

Pete

On Oct 1, 2022, at 5:19 PM, Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011@...> wrote:


Shot this the other night after dusk. Went inside to do some work. Came back out half hour later to find clouds had rolled in. I was lucky to get 3 exposures which could be Median combined in MaximDL. Used Topaz Denoise to suck as much marrow out of this bone as could be. Maybe will add some OIII and SII the next time it's clear out. Maybe it will make a half decent color shot to hang on the wall.
Smile

https://www.astrobin.com/full/wfbzaq/0/

Rolando


Re: Mobile Mounts

Peter Nagy
 

Problem with short sub-exposure times and capturing many subs with full frame Sony IMX-455 sensors is hard disk space (each binned 1x1 image is 120MBytes). I know hard disks are cheap but stacking quite a bit of 120MBytes subs can be time consuming and can cause processing software to crash when stacking.

Personally I prefer only LRGB imaging at gain of zero to take advantage of deep well capacity, expose longer like 10 minutes subs with awesome A-P1100GTO-AE mount and fewer total subs to save hard disk space and processing times. 

Peter


Re: NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

Roland Christen
 

I agree. It could have been worse. I could have had only 15 minutes. Stuck out tongue winking eye
These Sony chips are amazing.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Chris White <chris.white@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Sat, Oct 1, 2022 4:39 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

On Sat, Oct 1, 2022 at 05:19 PM, Roland Christen wrote:

https://www.astrobin.com/full/wfbzaq/0/
Pretty amazing result for only 30 minutes!

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

Chris White
 

On Sat, Oct 1, 2022 at 05:19 PM, Roland Christen wrote:
https://www.astrobin.com/full/wfbzaq/0/
Pretty amazing result for only 30 minutes!


NGC7000 when you only have 1/2 hour

Roland Christen
 

Shot this the other night after dusk. Went inside to do some work. Came back out half hour later to find clouds had rolled in. I was lucky to get 3 exposures which could be Median combined in MaximDL. Used Topaz Denoise to suck as much marrow out of this bone as could be. Maybe will add some OIII and SII the next time it's clear out. Maybe it will make a half decent color shot to hang on the wall.
Smile

https://www.astrobin.com/full/wfbzaq/0/

Rolando

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: Mobile Mounts

Roland Christen
 

Tip-Tilt systems are available, and have been for many years. I'm not sure why they never caught on, but maybe the added expense and complexity is just not worth it.

For me the latest CMOS cameras have allowed quick imaging so that guiding for 20 minutes is no longer necessary. If you have limited time and want to get results, you can now get pretty good images in a half hour session. Couple nights ago I aimed my 130 refractor at NGC7000 and started a set of 3 x 600 sec exposures. The result is this image: https://www.astrobin.com/full/wfbzaq/0/

What i find interesting is that I can get the same amount of exposure with my QSI 683 (8300 chip) as I can with the ZWO 6200 chip. The main difference is the level of noise is about 5 times higher in the 8300 chip, so the actual signal/noise is much greater in the ZWO camera. I can therefore stretch the image and get much lower noise in the darker areas and bring out detail there that gets hidden in the 8300.

So, with the present CCD cameras I would need a number of 30 minute exposures to get well above the noise floor, whereas the CMOS cameras now allow much shorter exposures, which places much less demand on the mount. I find I can model effectively almost on the fly and get good 10 minute subs without having to resort to guiding of any kind.

Stacking a bunch of shorter exposures has another benefit. When median combining them it pretty much eliminates satellite trails. One exposure of 30 minutes now before midnight will pretty much be ruined by numerous satellite trails.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: drgert1 via groups.io <drgert1@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Sat, Oct 1, 2022 3:02 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mobile Mounts

Hello All,

This is an interesting discussion. I have not read all detail posting but what is the expert community sense on using parallel-plate tip-tilt star guiders? (Formerly called AO devices. But AO is a totally different league and these devices should make no claim to that name. I call them PPG 'parallel-plate-guiders)

Advantages of  PPG:
  • Attaches between OTA and camera with minimum hardware add-on / weight
  • No 'guide scope', no 'encoders'.
  • Absorbs all displacement frequencies from long term drift, flexure, to worm PE, to to short term 'chasing seeing' if guide star brightness permits. (We don't have sodium laser guide stars yet)
  • No more moving loads of mount + OTA inertia with all sorts of overshoot, backlash, lag, etc.
  • Let mount run open loop. If needed at all issue a bump between exposures to re-center the PPG element.

Disadvantages
  • Only one captive vendor. (SBIG)
  • Only one other small player (SX)
  • Current models eat some back focus. (better engineering design, do I hear someone say voice coil, could reduce bfl. I bet such device can be built in 1inch blf)
  • Need guide star (but I claim that discussion 'I can't find a guide star at my 5000mm fl' is overblown. BSI guide cams with decent chip sizes are available and PPG frequency can be traded vs exposure time. But try 'classical guiding' at 10Hz if a guide star is bright enough.
What's the expert opinion?

Thanks & Clear Skies,
Gert

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: APCC/driver: failure to get lat/long from mount

Ray Gralak
 

Any suggestions or hints as what may cause it to happen intermittently and any mitigation?
The only reason is a communication error, possibly caused by an insufficient timeout duration. Try increasing the timeout. Using an underpowered CPU or a remote desktop connection with insufficient bandwidth can also cause timeouts.

-Ray


Re: We want your Astro and AP Equipment Images

hawkp60@...
 

Hi Brian. This is a picture of my MACH2, with Takahashi 180ED, taken this last winter near Tombstone, AZ. I was actually taking a picture of some Havilina’s that startled me during a AP session.

I may have been taking subs for IC 434 and the Horsehead Nebula


APCC/driver: failure to get lat/long from mount

david w pearson
 

I am using APCC w AP1200/CP4. Every month or two,  i get 'failure to get "lat/long from mount" when starting up APCC.
mount power has been on for 10's of minutes before starting APCC.
i am running an all night script....so when it happens my script stops....an exception does not get created.
Any suggestions or hints as what may cause it to happen intermittently and any mitigation?
thanks
dave


Re: Mobile Mounts

drgert1
 

Hello All,

This is an interesting discussion. I have not read all detail posting but what is the expert community sense on using parallel-plate tip-tilt star guiders? (Formerly called AO devices. But AO is a totally different league and these devices should make no claim to that name. I call them PPG 'parallel-plate-guiders)

Advantages of  PPG:
  • Attaches between OTA and camera with minimum hardware add-on / weight
  • No 'guide scope', no 'encoders'.
  • Absorbs all displacement frequencies from long term drift, flexure, to worm PE, to to short term 'chasing seeing' if guide star brightness permits. (We don't have sodium laser guide stars yet)
  • No more moving loads of mount + OTA inertia with all sorts of overshoot, backlash, lag, etc.
  • Let mount run open loop. If needed at all issue a bump between exposures to re-center the PPG element.

Disadvantages
  • Only one captive vendor. (SBIG)
  • Only one other small player (SX)
  • Current models eat some back focus. (better engineering design, do I hear someone say voice coil, could reduce bfl. I bet such device can be built in 1inch blf)
  • Need guide star (but I claim that discussion 'I can't find a guide star at my 5000mm fl' is overblown. BSI guide cams with decent chip sizes are available and PPG frequency can be traded vs exposure time. But try 'classical guiding' at 10Hz if a guide star is bright enough.
What's the expert opinion?

Thanks & Clear Skies,
Gert