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Sky Safari on Ipad Mini?

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#1 Dan56

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 07:01 AM

I am wanting to get a ipad or ipad mini just for Sky Safari.But if the mini has no gps, my dark site has no wifi,or cell towers,how will a mini know the right star positions when you turn it on? I am just making sure what will work before I start spending money.

#2 btschumy

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 07:31 AM

You will have to enter your Lat/Lon manually. Not really much of an issue.

#3 okieav8r

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 03:52 PM

I was at Best Buy a few days ago, and was told by a salesman there that the next generation of ipad mini will have the gps feature. I don't know whether that's absolutely true or not, but maybe someone who knows better will chime in.

#4 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 09:13 PM

I was at Best Buy a few days ago, and was told by a salesman there that the next generation of ipad mini will have the gps feature. I don't know whether that's absolutely true or not, but maybe someone who knows better will chime in.


You can always buy an Android tablet that does have a GPS plus a gyro and all the rest but you'll have to find a place to put the money you saved.. :)

Jon

#5 helpwanted

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 10:01 PM

i'd put the money i saved into an Apple product!! :)

#6 okieav8r

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 10:14 PM

I would also rather have the Apple product.

#7 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 10:45 PM

I would also rather have the Apple product.


I understand that you might well prefer the Apple product. But, you are at the mercy of Apple and if they don't have a product with the features you want/need you're stuck.

That's all.

Jon

#8 Richard McC

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 03:39 AM

The WiFi only iPad Mini tablets do not include GPS functionality but the cellular iPad Mini tablets do (I use Sky Safari on a cellular iPad Mini and it works great).

#9 JMW

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 11:23 AM

I have a iPad mini wifi only and the version three full size iPad. I bought the mini specifically to mount on my DM-6. It has a leather flip cover to block any light when I am not looking at it. Not a big deal to be wifi only for the few times are year when out of cellular range. I just pull up the GPS details on my iPhone and put it in a user define location. Since I usually go back to the same sites I can pick the user define location the next time I return. I own 3 iPads. I keep the original at work, the two newer ones at home. Sky Safari works great on all of them. I love that I can buy one copy of astronomy software and use it on 3 iPads and my iPhone5. I also have a version of Sky Safari for my laptop.

#10 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 12:09 PM

Sky Safari works great on all of them. I love that I can buy one copy of astronomy software and use it on 3 iPads and my iPhone5.



I do think that is one of the nice features of the Tablet/Smartphone marketplace. Whether it's the iOs or the Android OS, you purchase apps, they're yours to run on all your equipment (with that OS), no questions asked...

Jon

#11 Jeff Morgan

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 02:24 PM

Agree, no issue at all.

I'm using SF on the Mini. It's great!

If you want the latest rumors, go to macrumors.com

However, the problem with waiting is that there will always be great features in the next version. If you let that dominate your thinking, you'll never buy.

#12 Roger Corbett

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 05:07 PM

I would also rather have the Apple product.


I understand that you might well prefer the Apple product. But, you are at the mercy of Apple and if they don't have a product with the features you want/need you're stuck.

That's all.

Jon


Absolutely! After all, there are only 775,000 apps available for download from the App Store! :) And, if that isn't enough for you, you can always jailbreak your device...

One more vote for Apple.

#13 JMW

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 11:38 PM

Every computing device has an eco system. You have to see which of the solutions available best overlap with your needs and wants. I have worked in IT supporting networking at a university for the last 24 years. We have faculty, staff and students using every kind of platform. I try to use the tools that best do the job. For networking I depend on Unix style operating systems. I spend as much time on on command line interfaces as I do using GUI applications. I don't try to convince other people that my choices are best for them. It saves me the grief of having to support people who get stuck using an operating system or computing device that they don't want to use or learn more about. Fortunately my department runs the switches, wireless, routers and firewalls of our University's network so I don't have to directly support many end users or computer devices directly.

My best advice is do your research and make your choices and be happy about it. Trying to change other peoples opinions is a waste of time.

#14 Gil V

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 11:16 AM

I use the app on my iPod touch (no GPS) with absolutely no problem. You line up the view in the app with the view in the sky and hit the Gyro button - good to go.

I generally don't use that feature, but it is totally independent of a GPS. Just enter your longitude/latitude and you are good to go.

No worries. Oh, and by the way, on my wife's iPad 2 the app is absolutely amaz-uz-ing.

#15 Roger Corbett

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 01:01 PM

JMW, next time I'll use a <sarcasm on> indicator! :grin: I cited the TOTAL # of iOS apps --NOT as a reason for going with Apple--but to emphasize that one is hardly at the "mercy of Apple" or "stuck" when there are nearly 800,000 apps in the App Store and you can always jail break the device if you can't find what you need.

On re-reading the thread, however, I see that Jon may have been referring to hardware not software.

In any event, the OP was asking whether the iPad mini was suitable for astronomy given its lack of GPS and several of us were "voting" yes for it and the Apple i-devices!  For astronomy, you really can't wrong by going with an iOS device.  It has a large selection of full-featured, polished, and incredibly useful astronomy apps.

#16 Jeff Morgan

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 03:30 PM

And one has to step back and ask how much accuracy is required for amateur astronomy. It's not like you're trying to deliver a cruise missile through someone's window.

Inputting GPS coordinates may be mildly inconvenient, but probably good enough for anything we do. And the Mini's small form factor (compared to a full-sized tablet or MacBook) easily outweighs inputting lat/longs.

#17 Taylor

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 11:41 PM

Have you considered the Google Nexus 7?
It is far better than the 3rd party Android tablets and the Google Play store nowadays is much better than what it used to be.
Last week I sold my iPad on Craigslist and picked up the Nexus 7. I really like it.
The fact that Google itself had control over the design of the device from start to finish makes it much better than the other Android products. I would say it is on par with the iPads.

The local Staples near me had one on display. I got a chance to play around with it a bit before buying it.

#18 Dan56

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 11:07 PM

Well the deed is done.Ipad mini was the chosen.Why Apple? I have a mac & apple tv,and wife has had ipads since they came out.Took a few min. to set it up, and went to app store and got Sky Safari pro.I really do not have time to learn all about the ipad, just turn it on and open Safari.I want the learnig curve time to be spent on the app.I now see I was over worried.I know enough about the sky to use it without being connected at a dark spot.One problem came up.I can not hold this thing long in my hand,looking at the sky.It is not IF but WHEN will I drop it at night.So more money and I got a case with hand strap.Seems to work.Step 2.How to mount it to a new cpc 1100 HD scope? Step 3. What do I need to connect to the scope?I will keep this thread going.Thanks for the feed back.

#19 Sorny

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 10:39 AM

Get a RAM mount for your iPad Mini. I have one for my full-size iPad 3rd gen. Clamp to the right-hand side handle.

I've got a few bad pictures showing how I've got mine set up... I'm using SkyWIre and the adapter cable the scope came with to drive it. SkyFi would be a "cleaner" solution, but the wire was cheap. Now, the mini uses the lightning connector, so the SkyFI is the only current solution, though I hear the lightning version of the SkyWire is in development.

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#20 JMW

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 11:44 AM

SkyWire works fine with the lightning adapter cable from Apple. Get the 6" cable version. It will plug into the Skywire on one side and has a lightning adapter on the other end of the 6 inch cable.

#21 Raginar

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 08:06 PM

Sorny,

That's really cool. Where are you from in Southern MN? My family lives near Owatonna for the most part. PM me.

Chris

#22 Dan56

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 06:54 PM

Here is something that I have found out.A ipad mini with Sky Safari going through Apple TV, on a 55 inch TV is alright.I can show friends the app and its features,some astronomy sights to look for,all without crowding around a small tablet.It is a mirror feature that shows what ever the ipad or mac has on its screen,shows on the TV.Of course if you do not have Apple TV you have to spend more money.Could this be part of Apples trap? :question:

#23 WesC

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 05:27 PM

How is a feature like that a trap? All they are doing is enabling their products to work together. its not like if you don't have an Apple TV you somehow lose functionality.

#24 cpl43uk

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Posted 07 June 2013 - 01:18 PM

Anyone know if there any decent software that logs observations that can then be searched etc but is NOT a planner since I already have the sky safari and its good enough for my needs. Ideally I want it on the mini so that I can type, and ideally in red light mode while out in the field and using it to drive my scope and operate sky safari. I realise Sky Safari has a rudimentary log system per object but its not good enough as stands. It would be cool if sky safari offered this in a future upgrade....






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