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kpendlebury
Vendor Main Sequence Software


Reged: 11/12/08

Loc: Central TX
Sequence Generator Pro 2.1.4 Beta is Released
      #5397523 - 09/01/12 12:30 AM

Hi folks,

We are proud to announce the latest beta build for the upcoming 2.1 release of Sequence Generator Pro. Please keep in mind this is beta software and has not been through our pre-release testing cycle. This means that you might encounter some bugs (or possibly crashes) during use. If this is not what you are looking for, we recommend staying with the 2.0 release. That said... getting a good set of users for the beta release will help us in moving toward stable software more quickly (we don't have all the combinations of gear you do).



In addition to an already solid set of features including:
- Complex image sequencing
- Auto focus
- Equipment profiles
- Automated target centering
- Click to center anywhere on existing images

...

Here is a list of major changes you will find in 2.1:

Visit our Yahoo! group for more details (http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/mainsequencesoftware/)

- Changes to events: We have never been at ease with the notion of Pause and Park events as event types. The sequencing table, as you can tell by the fields in any given row, are designed for events that produce images and not necessarily things like parking. As such, we have developed an extensible "Event Options" system that will allow for image related events (like pause and park) to execute in sequence. This creates a simpler sequence and allows us to have a more extensible system going into the future. These event actions are reflected with indicator icons so that you can see, at a glance, if your image based events have pause or park actions associated with them. The dots on top of the icons from left to right are indicative of "Pre-event" and "Post-event".

- Image retry when PHD guiding fails: The sequence will now automatically retry the current frame when PHD guiding deviates from "0" for a certain (user-defined) period of time (from wind or some other external disturbance). The retry frame will trigger focus events like a new frame would. We are still determining the best way to communicate auto-guiding induced retries to the user. This functionality will not be available for Astroart or Metaguide users.

- New flats data system: We have reworked the entire flats helper system. In 2.0, this system could only support saving flats data for monochrome CCDs with dedicated filter wheels (i.e. there were fixed spots for storing flats exposure data for each filter with binning values from 1x1 to x4). This didn't work well for storing flats data for OSC CCDs and Canon cameras. The flats system now has a "variable storage system" that can store exposure length for any combination of binning or ISO values.

- Flats Calibration Wizard: We have added a Flats Calibration Wizard. This wizard will be capable of quickly determining (with very little interaction), the appropriate values for your filter set (or no filter for Canons and OSC) and their associated cameras modes (binning and ISO). Just set your target ADU, select your modes and click start. We have even included min and max exposure duration in case your camera has a mechanical shutter. Most cameras can find an appropriate exposure length in three attempts. Note that Canon cameras have a non-linear response so these cameras may see a little bit more thrash when trying to center in on a value... After completing the wizard, you can save that data to a profile or to the current sequence.

- Flats Wizard (previously "Create Flats Sequence"): The flats sequence wizard will now allow you to create a new flats sequence or add flats events (with pauses) to the current sequence (these options all require a "lights" sequence as input).

- Image Grading Tool: This tool will help you figure out which of your sub-frames might be "bad" (out of focus, bad tracking, clouds). It will allow you to add any number of frames (from the same target) and it will automatically attempt to group them by "like" filter. Each image will be assigned a value for "whole image HFR", star count and a proprietary "score" rating between 1 and 100 (higher is better).

- New "Manual Filter Wheel": This is an option for folks using Mono CCDs with manual filter wheels (or filter drawers). This filter wheel functions exactly like any other filter wheel, expect instead of moving automatically it blocks the current action and requests the user switch the filter wheel and click OK to resume.

- Focuser backlash compensation (Found in Control Panel->Focus->Other). Using this feature will ensure that focus is approached from the same direction (as the focus run). This is useful if your focuser gearing and motors have a good amount "play". If you were running auto focus in the past without issue, you don't need to use this.

- Basic control over the Alnitak flatman (intensity and shutter)

- Initial support for the Meade DSI camera line.

- Pre-exposure flush control for older FLI cameras (in the settings dialog)

Other changes:

- Added Astrometry.NET as a plate solver for blind solves (requires Internet connection)
- Pause events at the beginning of a sequence are now triggered.
- Left and right arrows now control the "white point" on the histogram
- Up and down arrows now control image zoom
- Image scale, angle and position no longer reset if the new reference image
does not explicitly contain data for these fields.
- Better error handling when "Auto Centering" or "Center Here" fails.


As always, you can find it here:
http://www.mainsequencesoftware.com/downloads.php


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