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Celestron SkyQ Link

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#1 hamdul

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 03:17 PM

I know it's early But does anyone have a SkyQ link. I'm curious as to how it aligns the telescope????
thanks
Fred

#2 csa/montana

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 05:26 PM

Fred, Welcome to the Cloudy Nights forums! Glad you joined us here.

I'm sure that you will be getting some replies on your question about the SkyQLink soon, from our knowledgeable members.

#3 RTLR 12

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 06:45 PM

Fred,

The SkyQ does NOT align your mount. It is only a WiFi adapter that allows you to control your mount wirelessly using an iPad or iPhone.

Stan

#4 hamdul

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 07:05 PM

Stan,
This is taken from the Celestron Ad. "Telescope alignment - align your telescope wirelessly using Your iPhone or iPad"
Further in their instruction sheet they state, "Once Sky Q is connected to the telescope a screen is displayed allowing you to control and align the telescope. Do you read this differently than me?

#5 RTLR 12

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 07:24 PM

You can align your mount wirelessly using the SkyQ app on your iPad or iPhone, or you can connect to a laptop or PC using NexRemote. The downloaded SkyQ app is a planetarium program that you can control your mount with. The SkyQ adapter is only the WiFi connection. You still must manually align the mount using the program on the selected hardware. The SkyQ does not do the alignment automatically for you.

Stan

#6 hamdul

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 07:45 PM

Stan,
I'm still perplexed by this. At present I set up the scope, which is a Nexstar 8SE, and go thru the prelim. stuff. Then I select "Skyalign" I swing the scope to the first star, center it in my finder and push "Enter". Then I look in the eyepiece, center the star and push "Align". Then I'm asked to go to star number 2. I repeat the process for the 3 alignment stars.
My question is, What's different with this SkyQ module?
Fred

#7 RTLR 12

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 07:53 PM

You can do it from your computer or iPad or iPhone.

Stan

#8 hamdul

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 08:04 PM

Stan,
You can do what???? I don't understand. Does it just replace the hand control? do I still have to look thru my finder to center the objects? If these assumptions are correct what's the advantage?
It's begining to sound like a case of "If it ain't broke , dont fix it'.
Fred

#9 RTLR 12

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 08:17 PM

Yes, It replaces the Hand Controller. Some people that do astrophotography will use WiFi devices to control their mounts. It makes for less cabling to the scope/mount. By using the WiFi and having cameras connected to the scope, you can sit in the comforts of your warm living room and control the scope. There are some other wireless devices available for telescopes too, but so far not all components are wireless yet. Some day it will be a completely wireless situation. I'm mostly a visual guy, so I'm standing next to my scope and look through the eyepeice the old fashion way.

Stan

#10 hamdul

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 08:54 PM

Stan,
First, do you have one of these things?
Second you say, "you can sit in the comforts of your warm living room and control the scope." Now I ask, how do you align your scope sitting in the comforts of your warm living room???
Fred

#11 wolfman_4_ever

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 09:50 PM

By using a camera... Video or Still.

I don't have a skyq but Orion's version.

It's just a serial over WiFi adapter.

#12 hamdul

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 10:10 PM

Dave,
I don't believe the "Orion Version" is the same thing. Go to the Celestron web site to get the data on this item. They also have the instruction sheet that you can look at.
Fred

#13 wolfman_4_ever

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 10:48 PM

Ya, I am reading it.. its the same thing... except the Orion plugs into the hand controller only and only does Ad-Hoc mode for wireless. The Celestron can plug into the Aux port or HC port and does Ad-Hoc and bridged wireless..

The alignment they are talking about is using the SkyQ app or the southern stars app to do an alignment with your Ipad/iPhone/Android. You could also use nexremote on the PC to align the mount wirelessly.
I use TheSkyX as my planetarium program. Most programs don't do a 2 or 3 star alignment. You point at a star.. align it in the eyepiece and on the software click align.. That's it. The software is expecting your mount to be polar aligned so 1 star is fine. When you go through the alignment routine on the HC, it is making a map of the sky however your mount is positioned. Nexremote will mimick your HC though and do multistar alignments.

#14 Tom Mengel

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 02:05 AM

You have to do the initial alignment by hand - The Sky Q just links your iPhone/iPad to the telescope controller. That allows you to use the Southern Star App to listen for and interpret the pointing data that the controller sends out every half second or so to sync the OTA position to the iPhone/iPad screen. In the case of GOTO scopes you can also issue commands from the iPhone/iPad (using the application screen) to let the controller know what you want to point to and track the position visually while it slews into position.

The Sky Q just acts like a wireless WiFi "cable" between the telescope controller and the iPhone/iPab and has no "brains" in of itself to do any alignment. You will still have to set up the initial alignment (the old fashion way - hand aiming the scope to the chosen alignment stars and telling the controller the star in centered in the field) before you can start to use the Sky Q link.

Hope this helps.

#15 hamdul

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 08:44 AM

Guys, I have read all your post and it seems the concensus is that you still have to do the alignment by hand, the old fashion way. However I still have a hard time wrapping my head around the Celestron claim, "Telescope alignment - align your telescope wirelessly using Your iPhone or iPad"
What does that mean????
Fred

#16 RTLR 12

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 08:50 AM

Fred...Instead of using the Hand Controller to align the mount, you use your phone, or iPad, or computer.

#17 hamdul

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:17 AM

Stan,
I have an I pad. I have the Sky Q app installed on the I pad. If I had a Sky Q link I would plug that into the Telescop AUX Port or HC. I then follow all the instruction ending with "tap the connect to telescope button" Then the instructions say, " Once Sky Q app is connected to the telescope a screen is displayed allowing you to control and align your telescope. You can manually move the telescope using the direction buttons and the slew rate slider control. Press the Align Telescope button and follow the directions to complete the alignment process."
My questio is, what are those alignment instuctions going to say? Are they going to say, "Locate the 1st alignment star in the finder". If thats the case what's the purpose of getting the "Link" only to end up aligning the scope the old fashioned way?
Fred

#18 Jim Romanski

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:31 AM

Fred

I have a SkyQ Link on order. It was supposed to ship late March then the website said early April. I just looked and it says April 24th. So to my knowledge, nobody has received one yet. Maybe a dealer or a reviewer but I haven't heard from anyone who has one yet.

I think some of its function and how you will align your scope we're kind of guessing and surmising from Celestron's meager write-up.

I decided to order one because I have 2 Celestron mounts and it's pretty inexpensive. Perhaps they'll have them at NEAF to look at. But for now I'm just waiting to get mine.

#19 hamdul

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 10:43 AM

Jim,
I think some of its function and how you will align your scope we're kind of guessing and surmising from Celestron's meager write-up.
Smart words and right on.
Bye the way have you downloaded the instruction sheet from their site?
Fred

#20 RTLR 12

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 10:59 AM

Fred, I see that you just don't get it. Actually it is not the same as 'the old fashion way'...it's wireless. Someday you may come to understand this and why some find this way appealing. As for now...I give up.

Stan

#21 Jim Romanski

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 02:46 PM

I think Fred understands the wireless thing. It sounds like he's trying to get an idea what the "work-flow" of the software is like.

With the hand controller I turn on the scope and have to tell it the date and time each and every time I power up. Then I align the marks on the mount and either do a 2 star alignment or the quick align or what I usually do which is to choose "last alignment". If I'm looking at planets or bright DSO I don't bother with the GOTO. But it's still a pain to get started.

I'm hoping that the date, time and location information will be pulled off my iPhone. Then I can simply go to the align marks and 2 star alignment. And I'm hoping that for the 2 star alignment it will show me where in the sky those stars are. I haven't downloaded the app yet so I'm just imagining how it might work. But I always remember my old boss' saying "all software is inherently disappointing" and I'm trying to contain my expectaions.

#22 RTLR 12

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:14 PM

Jim,

You must be talking about your CG-5 not remembering the date and time, because the CGEM has an internal clock that remembers that info. Yes, I think the SkyQ app is a planetarium program, so that will give you a 'map' of the sky. At least a good enough map to locate your alignment stars.

Stan

#23 Jim Romanski

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:25 PM

My CGEM DX does not keep the date and time once it's unplugged. It does show the last time that I input into it.

It might keep the time and date during my observing session if I switch it off but keep it plugged in. I haven't tried this yet. But everytime I wheel it out and plug it in I have to input it.

#24 Stew57

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:35 PM

Is your RTC turned on? It is supposed to keep time/date.

#25 Jim Romanski

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 03:39 PM

I never turned it off. I'll have to check it next time I go out.

I don't see anything in the manual about an internal battery. What powers the RTC?






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