Deep Sky Object Database for Non-Keypad Users


M Hambrick
 

I have another "newbie" question related to APCC: I have been using the GOTO functionality of my keypad to slew to whatever object I want to look at. For those APCC users who do not have or use keypads what are you using ? I assume that you are using some sort of observatory control software (e.g. MaxIm DL or PinPoint) with some sort of object catalog, but there are many options.

Since I have the keypad I will continue to use it, but are there any particular advantages to going with observatory control software over the keypad ? If I did so it would most likely be via MaxIm DL since I already use that platform for guiding and imaging.

Mike


Eduardo Oliveira
 

Hi there,

With PC software you can use plate solve functionality which for me was a game changer in my Astrophotography workflow. I use Astrophotography Tool which in my opinion is one of the best value for money acquisition softwares available. With APT you have access to Point Craft, a very capable suite of plate solve functions that automates centering of targets, meridian flips and much more. Of course there are many other programs that are even more complete than APT with Observatory control functions and automation. 

Regards 

Eduardo Oliveira



Em seg., 6 de set. de 2021 às 15:02, M Hambrick <mhambrick563@...> escreveu:

I have another "newbie" question related to APCC: I have been using the GOTO functionality of my keypad to slew to whatever object I want to look at. For those APCC users who do not have or use keypads what are you using ? I assume that you are using some sort of observatory control software (e.g. MaxIm DL or PinPoint) with some sort of object catalog, but there are many options.

Since I have the keypad I will continue to use it, but are there any particular advantages to going with observatory control software over the keypad ? If I did so it would most likely be via MaxIm DL since I already use that platform for guiding and imaging.

Mike


ap@CaptivePhotons.com
 

M Hambrick wrote:

 

  • I have another "newbie" question related to APCC: I have been using the GOTO functionality of my keypad to slew to whatever object I want to look at. For those APCC users who do not have or use keypads what are you using ? I assume that you are using some sort of observatory control software (e.g. MaxIm DL or PinPoint) with some sort of object catalog, but there are many options.

 

  • Since I have the keypad I will continue to use it, but are there any particular advantages to going with observatory control software over the keypad ? If I did so it would most likely be via MaxIm DL since I already use that platform for guiding and imaging.

 

So I have been wondering the reverse a bit, whether I will eventually miss not having a keypad.  😊

 

I use Stellarium, which is free and pretty good.  I wanted to try Cartes du Ciel but despite trying twice could not get the additional databases loaded so it lacked a lot of details and images.


Stellarium though is pretty good.  It also will control the mount directly (via a telescope control plugin) or integrated with a session manager like NINA.  I image so my normal approach is to find targets in Stellarium, then pull the coordinates into the framing assistant in NINA, tweak framing and rotation, and then build a sequence to image it.  Stellarium will also show the current telescope location on its display, though I rarely use that aspect (i.e. I rarely actually connect the telescope directly to stellarium).

 

The biggest lack I would anticipate if I were doing visual observing is a convenient joystick type adjustment.  APCC and NINA both have buttons, but buttons on a windows display are awkward compared to a keypad to fine tune your pointing if visually looking through an eyepiece.  I say that theoretically, as one day I will find my eyepieces and try it.  😊

 

Linwood

 


Roland Christen
 

You can use any planetarium program along with your keypad. I use SkyX to select objects I want to see, and use the keypad for centering, slewing and tracking functions, as well as parking, unparking, etc.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: M Hambrick <mhambrick563@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Mon, Sep 6, 2021 1:01 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Deep Sky Object Database for Non-Keypad Users

I have another "newbie" question related to APCC: I have been using the GOTO functionality of my keypad to slew to whatever object I want to look at. For those APCC users who do not have or use keypads what are you using ? I assume that you are using some sort of observatory control software (e.g. MaxIm DL or PinPoint) with some sort of object catalog, but there are many options.

Since I have the keypad I will continue to use it, but are there any particular advantages to going with observatory control software over the keypad ? If I did so it would most likely be via MaxIm DL since I already use that platform for guiding and imaging.

Mike

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Worsel
 

Mike

I have used Cartes du Ciel (CDC - https://ap-i.net/skychart//en/start) for several years now and really like it.  It integrates well with ASCOM, including the A-P V2 driver.  There are Windows, LINUX (a couple distros), MacOS, RPI, FreeBSD versions.  All are free.

While I have used UCAC, NOMAD, and GAIA star catalogs at times, the default catalogs cover all the obvious objects.  There are many other catalogs available from the above website.  One thing to watch for is where the catalogs are installed.  If you choose to install catalogs in a different folder than the default, then you have to point CdC at that folder on the SETUP -> Catalog configuration window.

CdC has a group.io forum... https://groups.io/g/skychart/topics

I also use Astrotortilla (a GUI for offline astrometry.net) and ASTAP for plate-solving.  Both work well; although I am more familiar with the former.  ASTAP is a bit faster, but not enough (seconds, not minutes) to make me use it exclusively. 

P.S.  1100 GT (non-AE), CP4.  I have never owned a hand controller and do not miss it.

Bryan


weems@...
 

When I’m not using the keypad, I use Sky Safari Pro on an iPad, with a SkyFi connected to the serial port. I can just touch an object on the sky chart and go to it. It has a huge database, including full descriptions of each object. Also a good system for setting up observing plans. Now that it knows how to go to Park 4, I don’t even need to use the keypad to shut down.

Chip


Ajay Narayanan
 

Cartes du Ciel with NINA works really well. NINA's built in sky atlas gives detailed information about visibility and transit time, and works well with the built in framing assistant. ASTAP is also integrated well. So this has now become my go to combination (pun intended).

Ajay