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Orion Atlas non goto and Ipad?

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#1 tommyhawk13

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 05:39 PM

I have a 4 year old Orion Atlas that I bought new without the goto controller. I had planned on getting a netbook and eqmod later, but then the economy dropped out...

Now I am thinking about getting a refurbished Ipad. Orion sells a cable that will communicate with the Ipad, but it looks like it has to be attached to the goto (Synscan?) controller.

Will eqmod work with the Ipad, or am I better off getting a netbook, or a non-Apple tablet?

#2 ourobouros2k2

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 07:44 PM

I bought a Sirius EQ-G without the controller, I use the netbook/eqmod. No complaints, but I too was considering doing the cable or wifi route with an ipad. Ken from orion said that their system works in concert with, not in replacement of the controller, and that initial alignment has to be done with the synscan controller. Since I didn't get a controller with my mount, I am outta luck. I would only assume the same would be true with the Atlas.

#3 tommyhawk13

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 09:40 PM

That's what I was thinking after reading the instruction pdf on Orion's site. Thanks!

#4 Phil Sherman

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 01:16 AM

I'd look for a refurbished/used laptop with XP on it to use with EQMOD to control the scope. You should be able to find one for less than $150, possibly $100.

I can control my scope, guide, and image using an old ASUS Eee netbook with an 800Mhz Celeron CPU and 2G of memory. It doesn't take a lot of horsepower to run a planetarium program (ie CdC) and EQMOD on XP.

Phil

#5 ourobouros2k2

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 01:21 AM

I like EQMOD a lot, and it is pretty nice to use a wireless keypad for direction buttons.

#6 rmollise

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 09:08 AM

I'd look for a refurbished/used laptop with XP on it to use with EQMOD to control the scope. You should be able to find one for less than $150, possibly $100.

I can control my scope, guide, and image using an old ASUS Eee netbook with an 800Mhz Celeron CPU and 2G of memory. It doesn't take a lot of horsepower to run a planetarium program (ie CdC) and EQMOD on XP.

Phil


Yep, the only way to use the mount without an HC is with EQMOD, and I doubt it is going to be ported to the iPad anytime soon...

#7 tommyhawk13

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 10:29 PM

To be clear, I have a hand controller, it's just not goto. Thanks guys, you saved me some coin and frustration.

#8 rmollise

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 11:06 AM

Best bet? Round up a cheap netbook. ;)

#9 cavefrog

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 08:51 PM

wouldn't the mount need encoders to be able to use goto from a computer?

#10 rmollise

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 09:31 PM

wouldn't the mount need encoders to be able to use goto from a computer?


No. The Atlas has never had encoders

#11 Phil Sherman

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 04:01 PM

wouldn't the mount need encoders to be able to use goto from a computer?


When the mount is driven by stepper motors, encoders aren't necessary. You can count steps of the motor to determine where the mount is pointing. The big issue is that when the mount is powered off, there's usually no place to store the current position. If you're using PEC, you have to be careful to always park the mount before powering it off. This returns the counters to zero, their value when powering up everything.

PEC needs to be synched with the worm position. If you remove the plastic cover on the RA worm, you will see a flat on one side of the shaft. You can use this to get a rough alignment of the worm if you suffer an unexpected power failure and loose the counter values.

EQMOD, the computer control program for the Synta mounts, including the Atlas, has a resync function that will allow resetting the counters after a power failure.

Phil






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