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

Binoculars: Using the Stellarium Ocular Plugin

This topic has been archived.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

#1 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 24 December 2009 - 11:22 PM

A few days ago, I downloaded and installed the plugin bundle available for Stellarium. Then I looked at what I might need to know for adaptation of the Ocular Plugin for my binoculars. The information on measuring binocular focal lengths can be found in the "Best of" section of the Binoculars Forum--one of moderator Ed Z.'s many valuable contributions about binoculars. I can certainly follow the math but performing the actual measurements is daunting, for example, measuring the length of the prism path. To make a long story short, I discovered you really don't need to do all that to adapt the Ocular Plugin for binoculars.

Here's an example of what I've done in green. I have included plugin author Timothy Reaves' comments and instructions from the module.ini file.

[module]
name = Ocular
author = Timothy Reaves
contact = *deleted for this Cloudy Nights post*
description = Shows the sky as if looking through a telescope eyepiece.

load_at_startup = true

[options]

# For each eyepiece, create a group name ocularX, where X is
# an interger in the range 0-9. For each group, add:
# name + A string to identify the ocular. Optional.
# afov = the apparent field of view for the eyepiece in degrees.
# efl = the focal length of the eyepiece in mm.
# sfl = the focal length of the scope in mm.
# flip = [h|v] flip the eyepeice view horizontally & vertically : optional

# Example for Nikon 12x50 Action Extreme with a stated 5.5° FOV:

[ocular0]
name = Nikon 12x50 Action Extreme
afov = 66 # TFOV 5.5° x 12 = 66
efl = 1
sfl = 12
# Comment: flip = [h|v] is not needed for binoculars


Yup, that easy!

I have compared the result with 5.5° finder circles in both Hallo Northern Sky (hnsky) and Cartes du Ciel (CdC beta ver 3). Allowing for the visual differences in the programs and star catalogues used, the FOV window is practically the same.

This is a lot simpler than measuring the eyepiece focal length and focal length of a binocular. Although binoculars are sometimes described as two parallel refractors lashed together, these specifications just don't come in the box or on the binocular. Since my eyes tell me this adaptation works, I'm satisfied.

Link to Stellarium Plugin Bundle: Stellarium Plugins

Clear Skies and Season's Greetings!

Attached Thumbnails

  • 3520536-stellarium-alnilam2_small.jpg


#2 Harry Jacobson

Harry Jacobson

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 241
  • Joined: 11 Sep 2007

Posted 09 December 2010 - 04:50 AM

Todd,

Your code's a marvelous expedient!

I'm looking for ways to get the Oculars plug-in to work with binoculars in the latest version of Stellarium, 0.10.6.1. The syntax used in the ocular.ini file is different than that in the modules.ini. Unfortunately I haven't found syntax info for the ocular.ini file. The latest Ocular plug-in uses windowed data entry - separate windows for eyepiece and scope objective so one is back to the daunting endeavor of measuring and calculating parameters not provided by the binocular manufacturer.

Hopefully I'll have something productive to report.

Harry

#3 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 09 December 2010 - 09:14 AM

Hello, Harry

I hope you have fun as well as success. I don't have the skills for further efforts.

Alas, it was a short, happy life in the expedient lane. The "fake-out" code probably had programmers howling and telescope users wincing, and it only worked in the last version before the ocular plugin became part of the download package.

I haven't downloaded the newest version yet. I always wait a while.

Clear skies to you.

#4 treaves

treaves

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 108
  • Joined: 27 Jan 2009

Posted 09 December 2010 - 02:04 PM

The format of the ini file has changed, but the same fields exist, and work the same way (with regards to the anyway). Just use the new format, or just add it in the UI.

#5 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 09 December 2010 - 08:07 PM

I just revisited the Ocular Plugin. The problem has been that I can't switch from "one" to "two" or "three," etc. So, in the Plugins UI for Ocular (via F2), I change and update only the ID 1 values for another "binocular."

For my Pentax 20x60 as an example:

General: Uncheck Scale Image Circle. (Sorry, about this. It's a compromise.)

Eyepiece:

Name: one
AFOV: 44
Focal length: 1
Field stop: 0

Telescope:

Name: 20x60
Focal length: 20
Diameter: 60
Uncheck Flip Vertically and Horizontally

If I want to "use" my Nikon 12x50, I make changes in the UI to ID 1 (where italicized:)

Eyepiece:

Name: one
AFOV: 66
Focal length: 1
Field stop: 0

Telescope:

Name: 12x50
Focal length: 12
Diameter: 50

That's not a lot of keystrokes. And that's the only way I have ever been able to make the plugin work with the Stellarium versions that include the Ocular Plugin.

Best regards,

#6 Harry Jacobson

Harry Jacobson

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 241
  • Joined: 11 Sep 2007

Posted 09 December 2010 - 11:35 PM

I just revisited the Ocular Plugin. The problem has been that I can't switch from "one" to "two" or "three," etc. So, in the Plugins UI for Ocular (via F2), I change and update only the ID 1 values for another "binocular."


Todd,

I got Oculars in Stellarium 0.10.6.1 working so that you enter the data once and can switch between eyepiece/telescope combinations. In retrospect I used what you recorded in your post of 12/09/10 08:07 PM as my starting point.

I experienced random problems when I installed Stellarium 0.10.6.1 over Stellarium 0.10.5. I wiped 0.10.5 completely off my machine: I un-installed Stellarium 0.10.5 then deleted the Program Files\Stellarium folder and the (for Windows 7) User\AppData\Roaming\Stellarium folder, then re-booted. The machine being clean of Stellarium, I installed 0.10.6.1. No more random problems.

It may be that switching in Oculars will work for you if you clean out the old Stellarium before installing 0.10.6.1. It may also be you won't need to uncheck Scale Image Circle. Scale Image Circle works for me. It was worth it having to re-install Star Catalogs 4 and 5 and my preferred locations.

Using the cleanly installed Stellarium 0.10.6.1, for each binocular, I used the UI to create identically named eyepiece and telescope combinations. Create identically named eyepiece and telescope combinations for each binocular. Make certain the eyepieces and scopes are created in identical order. This is useful when you switch eyepieces (ctrl-]) and telescopes (shift-]) to change binocular view. You do the same number of switches to get from one binocular to another.


Here's a Stellarium Ocular image overlaid with the Oculars configuration - Eyepieces tab:

Posted Image


Here's a Stellarium Ocular image overlaid with the Oculars configuration - Telescopes tab:

Posted Image

Note the order of Eyepieces and the order of Telescopes are the same. I can switch to views through different binoculars with minimum effort.

The values I entered on the Pentax 20x60 eyepiece and telescope tabs are identical to yours. Cranky curmudgeons think alike!

By the way, my experience is that Stellarium 0.10.6.1's the best version I've used.

Regards,
Harry

#7 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 09 December 2010 - 11:55 PM

That's great, Harry.


You just yanked me (:stuck:) out of a classic user error:

This is useful when you switch eyepieces (ctrl-]) and telescopes (shift-]) to change binocular view.


So, I looked at the F1 help screen. :foreheadslap:

I was failing because the keys for switching are different now!

And yes, you can leave scale image circle checked.

Thank you very much!

Clear skies!

#8 EdKiefer

EdKiefer

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 254
  • Joined: 09 Apr 2007

Posted 10 December 2010 - 10:14 AM

If only issue you had was ocular not working after updating from previous version. All you need to delete is the ocular folder in your application path (here mine in XP "C:\Documents and Settings\Ed\Application Data\Stellarium\modules") .

This worked for me and then ocular worked after that .

IMO what would be optimum is to have a separate binocular tab like CCD and in this new tab have the mag and FL all in one field as binos don't have generally separate EP's , you could also give it oval FOV maybe .
Of course this needs code work on a plug-in .

#9 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 10 December 2010 - 11:35 AM

Before I forget, I thank Tim Reaves for his input in this thread. It was valuable information.

As Harry points out:

You do the same number of switches to get from one binocular to another.


If you don't do that correctly, you get some new binoculars. :lol:

We can adapt the Ocular Plugin by "brute force" for binoculars. However, instead of a separate tab for the input of several binoculars' magnification, aperture, TFOV and/or AFOV, simple pointer/finder circles defined by the user would be just fine. That's all I wanted from the get-go.

#10 EdKiefer

EdKiefer

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 254
  • Joined: 09 Apr 2007

Posted 10 December 2010 - 12:12 PM

you mean if there was a adjustable telrad type sight to set FOV view to mimic binocular view ?

#11 Harry Jacobson

Harry Jacobson

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 241
  • Joined: 11 Sep 2007

Posted 10 December 2010 - 04:53 PM

....simple pointer/finder circles defined by the user would be just fine. That's all I wanted from the get-go.


I agree! The Telrad target - 1/2 degree, 1 degree, and 2 degree concentric circles - are useful however a finder circle for each binocular one owns would be ideal in Stellarium and possibly more useful to active observers than the ocular views. The ocular view is useful to validate you've arrived at your star-hopped destination. Finder circles matching a particular bino's TFOV would help you get there.

Harry

#12 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 10 December 2010 - 05:20 PM

Like these pointing circles I set up in Hallo Northern Sky (hnsky):

Attached Thumbnails

  • 4240943-hnsky_pointing_circles.jpg


#13 EdKiefer

EdKiefer

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 254
  • Joined: 09 Apr 2007

Posted 10 December 2010 - 05:42 PM

Like these pointing circles I set up in Hallo Northern Sky (hnsky):


Yes, thats what I have setup in TheSky4 , have all my EP and CCD area's. you can easy simulate bino EP view in there .

#14 treaves

treaves

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 108
  • Joined: 27 Jan 2009

Posted 28 December 2010 - 04:26 PM

Oculars does have a Telrad sight.

#15 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 28 December 2010 - 06:06 PM

Control + b

A heckuva lot faster and serviceable. Then optionally if you want to bother: Use the Ocular Plugin adaptation for a specific binocular's FOV. In fact, you can select a target, do control + b, then control + b. My setup then shows the FOV for my Nikon 12x50 AE first.

Thanks, Tim

P.S. I misread and forgot Harry's mention of the Telrad sight. I hadn't read it as meaning that Stellarium has this feature. So, back to F1 again!

BTW, I downloaded and installed 0.10.6.1 this morning. I've got it working just fine.

Clear skies!

#16 EdKiefer

EdKiefer

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 254
  • Joined: 09 Apr 2007

Posted 30 December 2010 - 10:06 AM

Oculars does have a Telrad sight.

What I meant is when in ocular mode the telrad sight can not be turned on (ctrl+b) .Works fine out of ocular mode.
On the CCD sensor I think you need to seperate it from EP data .
What I mean is if I set it up for C800 scope I should see a APC size sensor fill the moon fully on its 22mm length .Now the sensor is to small as the EP mag affects it .
IMO add the FL of scope into CCD data so you could have CCD (canon 450) plus C800@2000mm (prime focus) or C800@1250mm (6.3 focal reducer ) .

#17 Man in a Tub

Man in a Tub

    Hubble

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 16,741
  • Joined: 28 Oct 2008

Posted 15 January 2011 - 06:36 AM

Tim Reaves has rewritten the ocular plugin for the next Stellarium release. Among the revisions and changes, the new ocular plugin will also include support for binoculars. Please see his post Oculars re-write in Stellarium.

Very nice. Visit the link Tim has provided in his post.

Clear skies.

#18 skysurfer

skysurfer

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 983
  • Joined: 05 Oct 2009

Posted 13 June 2011 - 09:03 AM

When I use binoculars I have to switch *both* 15x70 for eyepiece and telescope.
I use version 0.10..6 on Mac OSX (also 10.6).

The way I did is this:
I coud not enforce the binos in one single entry.


[General]
oculars_version=2
use_max_exit_circle=true
ocular_count=5
ccd_count=1
telescope_count=4

[bindings]
toggle_oculars=Ctrl+O
toggle_config_dialog=Alt+O
toggle_telrad=Ctrl+B
next_ocular=Ctrl+]
prev_ocular=Ctrl+[
next_ccd=Shift+Ctrl+]
prev_ccd=Shift+Ctrl+[
next_telescope=Shift+]
prev_telescope=Shift+[
toggle_crosshair=Alt+C

[ocular]
0\name=Nagler 13T6
0\afov=82
0\efl=13
0\fieldstop=0
1\name=Vixen LV 30mm
1\afov=55
1\efl=30
1\fieldstop=0
2\name=15x70 binos
2\afov=66
2\efl=20
2\fieldstop=0
3\name=Vixen LV 6mm
3\afov=45
3\efl=6
3\fieldstop=0
4\name=Vixen LV 2.5mm
4\afov=45
4\efl=2.5
4\fieldstop=0

[telescope]
0\name=Genesis
0\focalLength=500
0\diameter=100
0\vFlip=false
0\hFlip=true
1\name=15x70 binos
1\focalLength=300
1\diameter=70
1\vFlip=false
1\hFlip=false
2\name=Orion XT-10
2\focalLength=1200
2\diameter=250
2\vFlip=true
2\hFlip=true
3\name=Polarex 80
3\focalLength=500
3\diameter=80
3\vFlip=false
3\hFlip=true

[ccd]
0\name=EOS 40D
0\resolutionX=1936
0\resolutionY=1288
0\chip_width=@Variant(\0\0\0\x87\x41\xb1\x99\x9a)
0\chip_height=@Variant(\0\0\0\x87\x41l\xcc\xcd)
0\pixel_width=@Variant(\0\0\0\x87@\xa6\x66\x66)
0\pixel_height=@Variant(\0\0\0\x87@\xa6\x66\x66)



#19 EdKiefer

EdKiefer

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 254
  • Joined: 09 Apr 2007

Posted 13 June 2011 - 12:07 PM

this is what I have for latest beta . looks like your missing the "4\binoculars=true" lines. I am on windows so not sure if that matters .

[General]
oculars_version=2
use_max_exit_circle=true
ocular_count=5
ccd_count=1
telescope_count=3

[bindings]
toggle_oculars=Ctrl+O
popup_navigator=Alt+O
toggle_telrad=Ctrl+B
toggle_crosshair=Alt+C

[ocular]
0\name=Ocular 0
0\afov=43
0\efl=40
0\fieldstop=0
0\binoculars=false
1\name=Ocular 1
1\afov=52
1\efl=26
1\fieldstop=0
1\binoculars=false
2\name=Ocular 2
2\afov=82
2\efl=31
2\fieldstop=0
2\binoculars=false
3\name=Ocular 3
3\afov=100
3\efl=32
3\fieldstop=0
3\binoculars=false
4\name=Celestron 15x70 SkyMaster
4\afov=4.4
4\efl=15
4\fieldstop=0
4\binoculars=true

#20 skysurfer

skysurfer

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 983
  • Joined: 05 Oct 2009

Posted 14 June 2011 - 02:47 PM

This does not work for me the binoculars setting is ingored.

How can I get the newer version ?

#21 EdKiefer

EdKiefer

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 254
  • Joined: 09 Apr 2007

Posted 14 June 2011 - 06:52 PM

I have been using there beta's without any issue, very stable for me .

here link to project exe , for windows use 4896_win32.exe one
Edit: your on Mac so DL the newest mac version , I think it should have bino stuff in there but not 100% sure .

https://launchpad.ne...arium/ download

Main project page

https://launchpad.net/stellarium


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