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Celestron StarSense

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#926 dragonslayer1

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 08:45 PM

They have good products and excellent support, everyone has glitches that get by. They are working hard on it, probably one of those times a product was pushed by one dept and other dept wasn't ready,, who knows, but their warranty and support is excellent, Kasey

#927 Drjag2000

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 09:42 PM

Yes they seem to be working hard on the SSA and I appreciate and download all the latest beta firmwares. Unfortunately, the SkyQ seems to be the forgotten ugly stepchild. Owners have been told the app works in house and the problem has to do with uploading it to the itunes store. It is now approaching 4 months and still no solution, making the SkyQ a $99 paper weight. Perhaps they should allow Southern stars access to the SkyQ protocols so I can use Skysafari pro with the SkyQ. A win/win IMO - a wonderful app and a compact wireless solution.

#928 jag767

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 02:26 AM

We'll my skyprodigy head should be here tomorrow. I've been rethinking tearing it apart, and will probably use it for what it is. My 65mm triplet weighs all of 3 pounds, which means even with a 2" diagonal and my explore scientific 30mm 82* I am still under the max payload by about 1.5 pounds. If the software ever gets worked out for the ssa I will consider adding it to my cg5 asgt.

#929 jag767

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 06:07 AM

Tried it out last night. Im hoping the full moon + close by street lamp was the problem, but it kept coming up with too few stars. With how much you guys know about the ss system, is this normal? I know the camera can be adjusted for it, I tried the full moon setting, no good. I also saw the custom but wasnt sure how to manipulate it. Thoughts?

#930 neilson

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 10:48 AM

Where do you find the "Custom" or "Full Moon" settings. I just went through my menu and couldn't find them.

On some Starsense units like mine it has to be completely dark and my porch lite that's 50ft away has to be turned off or it will say "too few stars". The full moon has no effect on it according to Celestron engineers. It doesn't seem to effect my SS unit.

Neilson

#931 jag767

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 10:51 AM

Where do you find the "Custom" or "Full Moon" settings. I just went through my menu and couldn't find them.

On some Starsense units like mine it has to be completely dark and my porch lite that's 50ft away has to be turned off or it will say "too few stars". The full moon has no effect on it according to Celestron engineers. It doesn't seem to effect my SS unit.

Neilson


from celestrons site:

Change the StarSense Camera Capture Settings
By changing the exposure and gain of the alignment camera, you can compensate for the full moon, hazy/urban skies, suburban settings with lights, dark skies with too many stars for the camera, and even winds that may jar the camera while it’s getting an alignment image.

To access these predefined settings and a custom option, first enable the advanced menu by pressing Menu > Utilities > Menu Levels, scroll for Advanced, then press Enter. Next find Menu > StarSense Camera > Capture Settings and choose the one best fitting your observing circumstances. When done, realign the scope.

#932 jag767

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 10:52 AM

As for interference from the moon:

Observing Site Considerations
1) Pick a location where you will have the most unobstructed view of the sky. SkyProdigy’s StarSense Auto needs a clear view to the right or clockwise of the starting position. It basically moves clockwise approximately 90 degrees between successive images, so it needs a clear sky between 12 o’clock and approximately 9 o’clock to be successful.

2 ) Choose a site that has no bright lights that will shine on your SkyProdigy. Streetlights and the full moon can interfere with alignments. If you can’t find such a site, then use SkyProdigy’s StarSense manual alignment. It’s found by pressing the hand control’s Align button, then scrolling to StarSense Manual and pressing Enter. It allows you to manually point to three clear, dark areas of the sky for the StarSense camera to acquire images and build a successful alignment.

#933 neilson

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 11:29 AM

The reason I don't have all those settings is because I'm using newer firmware. They removed all those settings and the newer firmware adjusts the camera so the moon will have no effect. And it uses 4 alignment points now. I think their waiting until they finish the updates before they write a new manual. They changed and removed a number of things I wish they hadn't.

Neilson

#934 jag767

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 12:31 PM

The reason I don't have all those settings is because I'm using newer firmware. They removed all those settings and the newer firmware adjusts the camera so the moon will have no effect. And it uses 4 alignment points now. I think their waiting until they finish the updates before they write a new manual. They changed and removed a number of things I wish they hadn't.

Neilson


Hmm. Yes i can manually adjust gain and exposure time, no idea what i should adjust it to though. For full moon they lower gain from 33 to 23 and time stays at 3007 (no idea what unit that is) i got it to find 23 stars at one point but not consistently. Any ideas what to try adjusting it to?

#935 dragonslayer1

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 12:55 PM

I would go to this site and sign up for Star Sense stuff, or just check it out
http://teamcelestron.com/index.php
Kasey

#936 neilson

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 01:12 PM

And update your firmware. On the Celestron site or join Team Celestron public beta testers to get the most recent beta firmware updates. There were some problems when the moon is out with older firmware. The updates resolved that and some other problems.

Neilson

#937 jag767

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 07:47 PM

And update your firmware. On the Celestron site or join Team Celestron public beta testers to get the most recent beta firmware updates. There were some problems when the moon is out with older firmware. The updates resolved that and some other problems.

Neilson


Thanks for the tip! It wont let me download the beta becuase I am not a member of the group and need an invite. Also i cant seem to fin it on celestrons site. The firmware manager says I'm up to date though :shrug:

#938 dandabson

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 09:25 PM

Is it working on GEMs yet?

#939 king1522

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 10:38 PM



Thanks for the tip! It wont let me download the beta becuase I am not a member of the group and need an invite. Also i cant seem to fin it on celestrons site. The firmware manager says I'm up to date though :shrug: [/quote]

That's strange. I just went to the website and registered. No problems. I intend to download the latest update tomorrow. I didn't need an invite. I suggest looking at the website again and see if you can find where to register.

Don

#940 neilson

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 11:47 PM

To be a "beta tester" you need an invite but to be a "public beta tester" you just need to register and there's somewhere you select to request to be a public beta tester. Then you have to wait to be approved, It just takes a day or so.

Neilson

#941 jag767

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 05:27 AM

Ok i did all that just waiting to be approved. I am assuming the file for alt az will work with the skyprodigy as well? I mean if it works for the se mount i dont see why not but just checking.

#942 C8er

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 05:47 AM

Hi jag,

Are you looking for firmware for a Skyprodigy or a Starsense Accessory? I think Neilson and others here might have assumed you were after the Starsense Accessory firmware, which is different from the Skyprodigy firmware, hence some people talking of not having the ability to adjust for different moon brigntness levels etc, as that isn't in the Starsense Accessory firmware, only in the SkyProdigy firmware.

My understanding is that since release there have been no new Skyprodigy firmware releases as yet, but I think we have recently been told there is a new version of the Skyprodigy firmware due to come out soon in beta in team celestron. It isn't there just yet though, so there may be no urgency in you getting approved there if it is Skyprodigy firmware you are after. All the recent Starsense firmware releases in team celestron have been for the Starsense Accessory, not for the Skyprodigy mounts as far as I know, and the two products have their own separate and different firmwares.

Cheers,
Chris M

Ok i did all that just waiting to be approved. I am assuming the file for alt az will work with the skyprodigy as well? I mean if it works for the se mount i dont see why not but just checking.



#943 jag767

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 06:18 AM

Hi jag,

Are you looking for firmware for a Skyprodigy or a Starsense Accessory? I think Neilson and others here might have assumed you were after the Starsense Accessory firmware, which is different from the Skyprodigy firmware, hence some people talking of not having the ability to adjust for different moon brigntness levels etc, as that isn't in the Starsense Accessory firmware, only in the SkyProdigy firmware.

My understanding is that since release there have been no new Skyprodigy firmware releases as yet, but I think we have recently been told there is a new version of the Skyprodigy firmware due to come out soon in beta in team celestron. It isn't there just yet though, so there may be no urgency in you getting approved there if it is Skyprodigy firmware you are after. All the recent Starsense firmware releases in team celestron have been for the Starsense Accessory, not for the Skyprodigy mounts as far as I know, and the two products have their own separate and different firmwares.

Cheers,
Chris M

Ok i did all that just waiting to be approved. I am assuming the file for alt az will work with the skyprodigy as well? I mean if it works for the se mount i dont see why not but just checking.


Thanks Chris, and yes it is a skyprodigy not starsense. I think i mentioned it but yes i chose to go that route especially since i paid almost a third of the starsense pricetag for the skyprodigy in excellent condition. Besides, this is being used for my 65mm triplet grab and go, theres really no need for the higher payload of my cg5, and the cg5 tripod married to this head is really outstanding. I had dabbled with another skyprodigy about a year ago which worked perfectly, and i am fairly certain the light sources are what troubled my alignment. Tonight looks to be promising so i will dabble a little further. And suggestions on what to set the gain and exposure time to manually would be helpful, as the moon setting did not do it. I will wait patiently for the correct update for my setup.

Thanks!

#944 pcguru2000

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 09:40 PM

I'm still having a lot of problems with mine. Besides the poor goto's in the south half of the sky, My alignments are very inconsistent. Each night I have to do a number of alignments just to get a usable one. I hooked up to Starry Nights and it connects good and the goto's work but I want to image and I need to get my object on the DSLR chip and hopefully near the center but the up, down, left, right keys on Starry nights dont work correctly. left might go left, then hit it again and it goes right then hit it again and it moves left then moves right back where it started. I'm not the only one reporting that problem and on other programs. So Starsense needs to be getting more accurate consistent goto's like the Nexstar does.

I'm having another problem. During alignments the first alignment point images, gets 100 stars but the second one images but doesn't say too few stars or 100 stars or solved or anything it just says imaging, then pauses then says acquiring another point or something like that, and goes to the east side, images, gets 100 stars, solved then goes back to the west side and images 100 stars, solved then back to the east side to image 100 stars. Then sometimes it fails the alignment and sometimes it passes the alignment. In fact it rarely does the normal 2 points on the west then 2 points on the east side type alignment. Too many alignments fail or are not so good. This has happened dozens of times. I don't know if anyone is having these back and forth type alignment problems. part of them fail and some pass.

Neilson


When it says 100 stars, in my experience, that's a false detection. My says that when it points at the house wall, or a tree, or a street light.

Also, the planet modeling is slightly off. My star goto's are spot on, but planets are a little off (as far as jupiter and venus).

One thing that helps is to rotate my mount 90 degrees if it keeps trying alignment snapshots at walls or trees over and over. Rotating the mount 90 degrees, and shutting off-on the power, then retrying the alignment helps.

I've not had this issue in a completely unobstructed field. Good luck with this!

Be sure to go to team celestron, and download the latest firmware for the hand controller and the camera. That might help you.

#945 pcguru2000

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 09:57 PM

Just a heads up to anyone using latest upgrade. The year will fault to 2012 everytime you power it up and will need to be reset to 2013. Its a glitch they are aware of, Kasey


It's been fixed.

#946 neilson

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Posted 16 January 2014 - 11:00 PM

PCguru2000,
I live in a dark unobstructed area and have a GEM mount that's polar aligned, balanced and level. If I had walls and trees blocking or lots of light pollution or was placing my mount wrong I would expect some difficulty but that's not the case. I do have the latest beta firmware and my mounts problems are documented well on Team Celestron. Derik has been trying to help me the past few days with my problem of the second alignment point. I thought he had it fixed yesterday, but the problem came back tonight.

I have most of my CGE mounts problems posted on Team Celestron Starsense thread called "Poor goto's in the Southern Half of the sky". I have done alot of tests they gave me and I hope they will give me some kind of fix for all these problems soon. It sure would pick up my spirits.
And make me feel better about all the money I have spent this past year switching to a Celestron setup just so I could use the new Starsense they announced last January.

Neilson

#947 jag767

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Posted 19 January 2014 - 07:54 AM

So last night we tried a skyprodigy mount a friend has which works just fine, then tried to align mine under the same conditions. No good. I considered a few different ways to handle this, but ultimately found a solution which lands me a brand new mount and controller. I should get it no later than wednesday,fingers crossed this one works :fingerscrossed:

#948 Magellan

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:11 PM

Did they fix the ASPA for CGEM mounts yet. Its hard to do an alignment with my setup because the dome gets in the way but I can do ASPA just fine.

#949 C8er

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 05:45 PM

Hi Magellan.

ASPA on the SSA is apparently not working on any Eq mounts (nor on any alt-az mounts with wedges), not just the CGEM, and no they haven't fixed it yet.

Celestron have though said that ASPA is the next major item on their SSA fix list once they have finished fixing the Southern hemisphere problems they are currently working on, so hopefully it won't be too far away now.

Cheers,
Chris M.

Did they fix the ASPA for CGEM mounts yet. Its hard to do an alignment with my setup because the dome gets in the way but I can do ASPA just fine.



#950 Tim S

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 11:01 AM

Isn't it supposed to be capable of a firmware update?






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