Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Bluetooth Serial Adapter

This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
104 replies to this topic

#76 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 26 February 2009 - 09:49 AM

Keep us informed on how the DIY cable works out or if you can get a manufactured cable.

I know of several other wireless serial adapters and I plan to write the manufactures to see if I can borrow samples to test out. Who knows, maybe I will hang out a single for a "complete package, wireless serial telescope interface, guaranteed to work". Saving others from the issues we have dealt with.

#77 tjay

tjay

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,644
  • Joined: 03 Feb 2007

Posted 26 February 2009 - 07:38 PM

Will do Edward.

Based on this thread alone, I'm sure there would be a market for something that is "guaranteed to work".

#78 Mystic Hill

Mystic Hill

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 63
  • Joined: 29 Oct 2006

Posted 28 February 2009 - 10:32 PM

Anyone got a link for a reliable "scope end" bluetooth serial adapter with self contained battery power-- that is known to work with Astronomy software like CDC to control the scope wireless-- maybe I just need to buy the one on Orion's web site for $99 -- but it has a reputation for not working........... ????

Like this???
http://www.lemosint....ls.php?itemID=9


The AIRcable with battery is AIRcable Bluetooth Serial Adapter with power for $129.

What makes the AIRcable (non battery, $79) appealing to me is the power requirements are 5-15v DC; which takes in an AGM lead-acid battery. Most products of this type can't run this hot. Elsewhere in this tread it is said that 110v AC is required -- to run an AC adapter to produce about 5v DC. A DC converter would also do the same; but for the AIRcable straight through DC appears to work! A CloudyNights review of an older AIRcable showed a picture of a 9v battery with modified leads powering a Bluetooth serial adapter.

Roy

#79 Mystic Hill

Mystic Hill

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 63
  • Joined: 29 Oct 2006

Posted 28 February 2009 - 10:38 PM

The Aircable works well.
http://www.aircable.net/serial.html

If your serial port provides power on pin 9, it should be able to run the device without an AC adapter. (You also need a bluetooth adapter for the PC.)


How likely is it that the slave device in a serial connection has power to pin 9? Probably not a SBIG CCD camera, maybe a GOTO mount but I am skeptical.

Roy

#80 Joe Lalumia

Joe Lalumia

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 5,133
  • Joined: 24 Jan 2007

Posted 01 March 2009 - 02:31 PM

I went to Radio Shack and bought a 9 volt battery holder and short cable--- and the male end of the connector to fit the Aircable--- it works just fine on a 9 volt battery.

#81 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 02 March 2009 - 10:24 AM

Hello Mystic, my experience with powering a bluetooth device off pin 9 is that it does not work well. If the zener diode, which regulates voltage to the device, is not rated properly, as was the case with the cables I tried, all you will do is destroy the diode and possibly damage your scope. My recommendation is to avoid this type of setup and go either with the battery setup that Joe uses or get a female “size M Coaxial” DC plug with wire, connect another female plug on the other end and run the wireless bluetooth device off the auxiliary power from the scope IF you have an auxiliary power source on you scope.

#82 Joe Lalumia

Joe Lalumia

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 5,133
  • Joined: 24 Jan 2007

Posted 04 March 2009 - 06:31 PM

I received this email from customer support at Orion-- they do sell just the cable for the Orion Telescope- so by buying this cable I can use the Blue Star serial bluetooth adapter with my Orion Intelliscope, and my LX90/ETX90

Dear Joe Lalumia:

Thank you for contacting Orion.

We do have the BlueStar cable for the Intelliscope. They are $9.95 each.
I've put all the information in the journal section of your customer file.

If you call our toll free Customer Service number they will be happy to help
you with the purchase.

Clear skies and good observing,
Orion Tech Support

#83 tjay

tjay

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,644
  • Joined: 03 Feb 2007

Posted 28 March 2009 - 12:24 PM

Whew Hoo!

I finally got my Bluestar working with my laptop. It was a long struggle that involved having a Hand Controller that failed repaired after thinking the problem was with my laptop, but that's all behind me now.

I knew something was up when clear skies where predicted for a few days after I got my Bluestar...

I actually did end up getting manufactured cable.

#84 Joe Lalumia

Joe Lalumia

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 5,133
  • Joined: 24 Jan 2007

Posted 28 March 2009 - 04:34 PM

Way to go! ---- I also received the cable only--- for my Orion XT10i DOB--- I did a little playing around with it inside-- it would connect but never actually communicated with the laptop (on it's sky position)--

I only played around with it for maybe half an hour-- probably MY problem --- as I am not exactly sure if the Orion must be actually aligned FIRST-- before the connection is made. I did not actually align it inside....

I will try it again in the next few weeks and report the procedure for getting an Orion XTi DOB to show its sky position on the laptop.

The LX90 now works fine of course-- connects instantly every time...... using the Autostar Suite, Cartes duCiel version 2 and version 3, and Stellarium version 10.0.2 using the Stellarium Scope add-on software.

#85 tjay

tjay

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,644
  • Joined: 03 Feb 2007

Posted 28 March 2009 - 04:55 PM

Thanks Joe.

BTW, I did actually end up getting the Celestron Bluestar Kit from the designer/manufacturer, Celso Maiolo. Fortunately for me, he's on the other side of Toronto from me. The response I got from him was way more than I expected.

Apparently, he's now supporting the Bluestar devices himself, and if anybody needs to get in touch with him, they can PM me for his email address until he gets organized. I'd post it here, but I'm not sure that is allowed.

I should also send a thank you to Andre Paquette, who repaired by Hand Controller when the serial port on it went bad. Andre turned the repair around in a day, and with the shipping back and forth, I was only without my Hand Controller for a week total. Too bad about the forecast here now :(

#86 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 27 April 2009 - 12:53 PM

I have been puzzling over the various reports of Bluetooth serial adapters not working with Win XP. If you are a Linux user be of good cheer, the AIRcable Serial 3 adapter works just fine with KStar. I posted a HOWTO here on the computer/software forum for interfacing KStar with the AIRcable adapter; Back to XP. After much reading I have noticed that many of the Bluetooth stacks used require the hardware device to be connected to, be pre registered within the stack. If the hardware is not in the BT stack's list, no connection, even if everything else is set correctly, will be made. So the issues to making wireless BT telescope interface work are:

1) having a USB dongle that is know to work (tried and tested)
2) having a BT serial adapter that is know to work (T&T)
3) having a BT stack that will allow communications with the adapter and
4) comm. ports accessible
5) interface application (program i.e. KStar, Cartes du Ciel, Sky Pro etc.)

I have tried the BlueSoleil, Win BT stack and Toshiba BT stack. BlueSol does not connect to the Aircable. The Win BT stack can make a connection with the AIRcable but the connection is not strong and can be easily lost. Toshiba BT stack works well and makes a strong connect that stays even if the telescope misbehaves or losses power.

#87 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 04 May 2009 - 10:39 AM

Joe, that Aircable device you used must have been broke. I tested 3 Aircable devices this weekend on a Meade LX200 Classic using the latest Meade AutoStar Suite; all three functioned perfectly. No loss of connection or problems slewing the scopes using the software.

I have discovered that the latest ASCOM drivers for Meade LX will not load, complaint that Active X cannot locate or load the files. This issue was brought to life this past March over on the YAHOO ASCOM forum. There is a work around to the issue. You have to load an earlier version (the version before the latest ver) of the drives and then load the new drivers. I hope the ASCOM folk fix this issue. Many astro applications depend on the ASCOM drivers.

#88 Joe Lalumia

Joe Lalumia

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 5,133
  • Joined: 24 Jan 2007

Posted 04 May 2009 - 12:52 PM

Edward-- yes my AirCable is -- was-- probably broke. If you remember it worked for a short time using Meade Autostar suite--- but nothing else--- then it would not work at all.

After I switched to the "Blue Star" device every software program including Stellarium connected perfectly.

I bought the Aircable device used off of AstroMart ----- by the way -- so I could not return it to AirCable for a replacement or repair.

I still have it by the way-- :smashpc:

#89 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 04 May 2009 - 01:37 PM

Ooo, I did not know that you bought it used. That answers a lot of questions. Glad to hear that the other device is working well for you.

So far, every piece of software I have access to will work with the Aircable. The only thing I have not tried is using it with a Mac setup. I'm thinking of trying a Hackintoch build and check how it things work out.

#90 Joe Lalumia

Joe Lalumia

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 5,133
  • Joined: 24 Jan 2007

Posted 04 May 2009 - 03:51 PM

Ed-- yes the Blue Star and the tiny Kensington dongle connect first time every time-- and you can disconnect-- switch software and connect again-- no problems at all with the wireless connection. Using the AuroStar Suite you can call up the virtual hand controller and align the scope from scratch wirelessly-- I am using the plain old Windows bluetooth stack..... and XP service pack 3 on an AcerOne netbook.

#91 tjay

tjay

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,644
  • Joined: 03 Feb 2007

Posted 10 May 2009 - 11:46 AM

Arrghh! I'm back in Bluetooth **ll again! :(

I managed to get my Bluestar to connect a few times, but now I'm only getting it to work about 1 time out of 50 attempts :(

The laptop I'm using has a Cambridge Silicon radio chipset, and I've also tried a USB Bluetooth adapter with a Broadcom chipset.

I see that some people have had good luck with the Kensington USB Adapter. Does anybody know which Bluetooth stack it uses?

Thanks in advance.

I've been unable to determine which Bluetooth stack the Cambridge device is using, but the Broadcom is using a Widcomm Bluetooth stack.

I'm using Vista if that matters.

#92 Joe Lalumia

Joe Lalumia

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 5,133
  • Joined: 24 Jan 2007

Posted 10 May 2009 - 01:03 PM

I am using the Kensington with the regular Windows bluetooth stack-- XP service pack 3--

#93 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 10 May 2009 - 03:10 PM

tjay, the Kensington BT Adapter uses the Toshiba Bluetooth stack.

#94 tjay

tjay

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,644
  • Joined: 03 Feb 2007

Posted 11 May 2009 - 05:56 PM

Thanks for the replies Joe & Edward.

The laptop I'm using is a Toshiba, so I would have thought it would have come with the Toshiba Bluetooth stack. Perhaps I should give my work laptop, which is running XP, a try instead to see if Vista is the source of the problem.

#95 rick rian

rick rian

    Seeker of Truth(s)

  • *****
  • Posts: 38,703
  • Joined: 03 Aug 2004

Posted 13 May 2009 - 02:29 PM

Not to be a 'butt-in-ski' here, but has anyone tried this wireless setup from ScopeStuff ?

It looks very interesting ...

#96 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 13 May 2009 - 02:44 PM

No, I have not tried it.

#97 Joe Lalumia

Joe Lalumia

    Fly Me to the Moon

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 5,133
  • Joined: 24 Jan 2007

Posted 13 May 2009 - 06:06 PM

Saw that but decided to go with the Blue Star device-- knowing the folks at scopestuff I would bet they tested it on an actual telescope before bringing in additional stock.

I have used the scopestuff USB to Serial adapter and driver and they worked just fine.

Edward-- best of luck on your product.

#98 tjay

tjay

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,644
  • Joined: 03 Feb 2007

Posted 14 May 2009 - 08:54 PM

I spent some time on the phone with the designer of the Bluestar tonight, and apparently there is a problem with some telescopes (of which mine is one :( ) where the controller times out when the Bluestar is connecting.

There is a modification that can be done to the Bluestar to fix this, but then the Bluestar will no longer work in wired mode.

The problem I'm seeing is that the Bluestar would pair with my laptop properly, but when I tried to connect, the LED would go out (which is is supposed to do), but very shortly after that it would start blinking again, and all the software would say "there doesn't appear to be a Celestron telescope connected".

Celso (the designer/supporter of the Bluestar) is modifying a Bluestar for me, and will even meet me at my workplace to exchange the one I've currently got for the modified one early next week.

If anybody is having this kind of trouble, let me know and I'll either have Celso contact your or (after I check with him) give you his contact info.

#99 Edward E

Edward E

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1,450
  • Joined: 26 Mar 2006

Posted 15 May 2009 - 10:08 AM

Thanks Joe. I'm keeping me fingers crossed. :jump:

#100 tjay

tjay

    Mercury-Atlas

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,644
  • Joined: 03 Feb 2007

Posted 03 June 2009 - 09:57 PM

I spent some time on the phone with the designer of the Bluestar tonight, and apparently there is a problem with some telescopes (of which mine is one :( ) where the controller times out when the Bluestar is connecting.

There is a modification that can be done to the Bluestar to fix this, but then the Bluestar will no longer work in wired mode.

The problem I'm seeing is that the Bluestar would pair with my laptop properly, but when I tried to connect, the LED would go out (which is is supposed to do), but very shortly after that it would start blinking again, and all the software would say "there doesn't appear to be a Celestron telescope connected".

Celso (the designer/supporter of the Bluestar) is modifying a Bluestar for me, and will even meet me at my workplace to exchange the one I've currently got for the modified one early next week.

If anybody is having this kind of trouble, let me know and I'll either have Celso contact your or (after I check with him) give you his contact info.


I think I've reach a happy ending with this today. Celso and I met up, and he exchanged my Bluestar for one modified to work around this problem, and it appears to work correctly every single time.

:hamsterdance: :hamsterdance:


CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics