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Guiding an AVX on a Mac

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#51 Joe Bergeron

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Posted 22 January 2016 - 06:53 PM

Yup. You just pointed out the unquestionable fact that there is more Windows software, a fact which is completely irrelevant to the original question, which is from someone who wants to image using his Mac.

 

Such comments are as valuable as stating that Campbell has many more soup options when someone is asking about Amy's Kitchen soups.

 

As for me, I image with PHD2, Sky Safari, and Nebulosity on my Mac, and it's as easy as can be.



#52 Ken Sturrock

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Posted 22 January 2016 - 07:51 PM

Sigh.

/* Rant On */

This is actually a zombie thread and the OP hasn't bothered to check in post-resurrection. It is natural that, since the OP specifically mentioned a technology comparable to ASCOM, and not just general Macintosh astronomy software, Windows would come up in discussion. It is true that he specifically said that he wanted a Macintosh solution but, what was the intent of the responders?

Sure, I get tired of Windows-centric thinking as well, but I feel that a little patience is in order. I haven't seen anyone really pushing Windows here in a mean-spirited kind of way, the responses were from our fellow members who were trying to be helpful. None of the "Windows promoters" have been rude. None have been in conflict with the TOS. Moreover, the comments about Windows has driven some really interesting discussion about software development and INDI. Maybe Windows wasn't strictly on topic, but on an open forum, like Cloudy Nights, were members are here trying to help on their own time you sometimes have to accept their help given to others in the spirit in which it was intended. If you are actually paying people to work for you and answer your questions, then you have more latitude when it comes to making demands.

As has been discussed before, there isn't a Macintosh specific software forum (at the moment at least) because many Macintosh programs also have counterparts on Windows and it is useful to have the expertise of everyone involved when someone has a universal problem. If we set up a Macintosh forum, we'd soon need a Linux, a FreeBSD, an iOS and an Android forum. Then there would be even more divided discussion. Of course, I suppose that limiting discussion and conversing in an echo chamber can be comforting at times. Besides, we're in the mounts forum.

/* Rant Off */

Thank you for your indulgence. :flowerred:
 
On that note, I'll take the opportunity to show off. Here is part of my imaging log from last night. Unfortunately, seeing was marginal and the moon was bright.

Scripted on the SkyX Professional. One hundred percent Macintosh:
 
 

./run_target ngc4631 10x300 10x300 10x300 10x300 6x600 6x600 6x600

DID YOU REMEMBER TO SETUP YOUR FOCUSER?!?

(Press Control-C to abort)

Starting run in 5 seconds...


-------------------------------------------------------------------------
-[Start ngc4631]-
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

01:30:17 Searching SkyX Database for: ngc4631
01:30:17 Attempting Closed-Loop-Slew to: ngc4631
01:31:54 CLS Status: ngc4631 success.
01:31:55 Temma re-synched.
01:31:55 Conducting initial focus.
01:34:08 @Focus2 Result: Success
01:34:09 Returning from focusing star to target.
01:34:09 Attempting Closed-Loop-Slew to: ngc4631
01:35:20 CLS Status: ngc4631 success.
01:35:20 Mount Direction: East, Altitude: 52 degrees
01:35:28 Best guide star candidate: 640.57, 62.40
01:35:30 Autoguiding started.
01:35:36 Guide Star - off target: -0.55, -0.77 (1 of 36)
01:35:42 Guide Star - off target: 0.65, -0.30 (2 of 36)
01:35:48 Guide Star - off target: 0.25, -0.53 (3 of 36)
01:35:54 Guide Star - off target: 0.02, -0.59 (4 of 36)
01:36:00 Guide Star - off target: 0.02, -0.57 (5 of 36)
01:36:06 Guide Star - off target: -0.11, -0.60 (6 of 36)
01:36:12 Guide Star - ON target: 0.04, -0.40 (1 of 5)
01:36:18 Guide Star - ON target: 0.36, -0.34 (2 of 5)
01:36:24 Guide Star - ON target: 0.06, -0.39 (3 of 5)
01:36:30 Guide Star - off target: 0.61, -0.47 (10 of 36)
01:36:36 Guide Star - off target: 0.43, -0.69 (11 of 36)
01:36:42 Guide Star - off target: 0.24, -0.47 (12 of 36)
01:36:48 Guide Star - off target: 0.19, -0.72 (13 of 36)
01:36:54 Guide Star - off target: 0.75, -0.56 (14 of 36)
01:37:01 Guide Star - off target: 0.20, -0.76 (15 of 36)
01:37:07 Guide Star - off target: 0.12, -0.49 (16 of 36)
01:37:13 Guide Star - ON target: 0.08, -0.29 (1 of 5)
01:37:19 Guide Star - ON target: 0.24, -0.29 (2 of 5)
01:37:25 Guide Star - off target: 0.46, 0.13 (19 of 36)
01:37:31 Guide Star - off target: 0.04, -0.45 (20 of 36)
01:37:37 Guide Star - ON target: 0.41, 0.17 (1 of 5)
01:37:43 Guide Star - off target: -0.45, 0.27 (22 of 36)
01:37:49 Guide Star - off target: 0.20, 0.47 (23 of 36)
01:37:55 Guide Star - ON target: -0.16, -0.19 (1 of 5)
01:38:01 Guide Star - ON target: -0.12, -0.33 (2 of 5)
01:38:07 Guide Star - ON target: -0.38, -0.17 (3 of 5)
01:38:13 Guide Star - ON target: 0.17, -0.20 (4 of 5)
01:38:19 Guide Star - ON target: 0.38, -0.33 (5 of 5)
01:38:19 Guider is settled.

-[Plan]------------------------------------------------------------------

1st Filter (Red): 10 exposures of 300 seconds
2nd Filter (Green): 10 exposures of 300 seconds
3rd Filter (Blue): 10 exposures of 300 seconds
4th Filter (IDAS): 10 exposures of 300 seconds
5th Filter (Ha): 6 exposures of 600 seconds
6th Filter (O-III): 6 exposures of 600 seconds
7th Filter (S-II): 6 exposures of 600 seconds

-[Totals]----------------------------------------------------------------

Total Exposures: 58
Total Minutes: 380

-[Progress]--------------------------------------------------------------

01:38:26 Initial Focuser Temperature: -5.4

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

01:38:26 Start image 1 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 0 (Red).
01:43:33 Finished image 1 of 58.
01:43:35 Stats: Filter=Red, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4886, ®FWHM=3.12
01:43:35 Guider tracking.
01:43:36 Start image 2 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 1 (Green).
01:48:44 Finished image 2 of 58.
01:48:46 Stats: Filter=Green, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4870, ®FWHM=4.22
01:48:46 Guider tracking.
01:48:47 Start image 3 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 2 (Blue).
01:53:54 Finished image 3 of 58.
01:53:56 Stats: Filter=Blue, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4881, ®FWHM=4.16
01:53:56 Guider tracking.
01:53:57 Start image 4 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 3 (IDAS).
01:59:12 Finished image 4 of 58.
01:59:14 Stats: Filter=IDAS, Temp=-5.3, FocPos=4819, ®FWHM=5.66
01:59:14 Guider tracking.
01:59:15 Start image 5 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 4 (Ha).
02:09:23 Finished image 5 of 58.
02:09:24 Stats: Filter=Ha, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4908, ®FWHM=3.00
02:09:25 Guider tracking.
02:09:26 Start image 6 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 5 (O-III).
02:19:33 Finished image 6 of 58.
02:19:35 Stats: Filter=O-III, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4904, ®FWHM=3.20
02:19:35 Guider tracking.
02:19:36 Start image 7 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 6 (S-II).
02:29:44 Finished image 7 of 58.
02:29:45 Stats: Filter=S-II, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4877, ®FWHM=3.01
02:29:46 Guider tracking.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

02:29:47 Current Focuser Temperature: -5.4
02:29:48 Dithering mount.
02:30:01 Finished dithering mount: 2.6" N, 3.1" E
02:30:08 Best guide star candidate: 641.48, 64.61
02:30:10 Autoguiding started.
02:30:16 Guide Star - off target: -0.76, -0.74 (1 of 36)
02:30:22 Guide Star - off target: -0.45, -0.33 (2 of 36)
02:30:28 Guide Star - ON target: 0.20, 0.12 (1 of 5)
02:30:34 Guide Star - ON target: 0.25, 0.12 (2 of 5)
02:30:40 Guide Star - ON target: 0.36, -0.07 (3 of 5)
02:30:46 Guide Star - ON target: 0.07, 0.19 (4 of 5)
02:30:52 Guide Star - ON target: -0.17, 0.02 (5 of 5)
02:30:52 Guider is settled.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

02:30:53 Start image 8 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 0 (Red).
02:36:01 Finished image 8 of 58.
02:36:03 Stats: Filter=Red, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4886, ®FWHM=3.27
02:36:03 Guider tracking.
02:36:04 Start image 9 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 1 (Green).
02:41:11 Finished image 9 of 58.
02:41:13 Stats: Filter=Green, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4870, ®FWHM=4.54
02:41:13 Guider tracking.
02:41:14 Start image 10 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 2 (Blue).
02:46:21 Finished image 10 of 58.
02:46:24 Stats: Filter=Blue, Temp=-5.3, FocPos=4881, ®FWHM=4.09
02:46:24 Guider tracking.
02:46:25 Start image 11 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 3 (IDAS).
02:51:32 Finished image 11 of 58.
02:51:34 Stats: Filter=IDAS, Temp=-5.1, FocPos=4819, ®FWHM=5.52
02:51:34 Guider tracking.
02:51:35 Start image 12 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 4 (Ha).
03:01:42 Finished image 12 of 58.
03:01:44 Stats: Filter=Ha, Temp=-5, FocPos=4908, ®FWHM=2.79
03:01:44 Guider tracking.
03:01:45 Start image 13 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 5 (O-III).
03:11:53 Finished image 13 of 58.
03:11:55 Stats: Filter=O-III, Temp=-5, FocPos=4904, ®FWHM=2.83
03:11:55 Guider tracking.
03:11:56 Start image 14 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 6 (S-II).
03:22:03 Finished image 14 of 58.
03:22:05 Stats: Filter=S-II, Temp=-5.1, FocPos=4877, ®FWHM=2.96
03:22:05 Guider tracking.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

03:22:06 Current Focuser Temperature: -5.1
03:22:07 Dithering mount.
03:22:21 Finished dithering mount: 4.6" N, 6.7" W
03:22:27 Best guide star candidate: 613.68, 82.33
03:22:29 Autoguiding started.
03:22:35 Guide Star - off target: -0.54, -0.55 (1 of 36)
03:22:41 Guide Star - off target: -0.14, -0.50 (2 of 36)
03:22:47 Guide Star - off target: -0.54, 0.01 (3 of 36)
03:22:53 Guide Star - ON target: 0.03, -0.00 (1 of 5)
03:22:59 Guide Star - off target: -0.71, 0.05 (5 of 36)
03:23:05 Guide Star - ON target: -0.11, -0.21 (1 of 5)
03:23:11 Guide Star - ON target: -0.15, -0.12 (2 of 5)
03:23:17 Guide Star - ON target: 0.02, -0.14 (3 of 5)
03:23:24 Guide Star - off target: -0.60, 0.00 (9 of 36)
03:23:30 Guide Star - ON target: 0.30, 0.19 (1 of 5)
03:23:36 Guide Star - ON target: 0.23, 0.06 (2 of 5)
03:23:42 Guide Star - ON target: -0.07, -0.38 (3 of 5)
03:23:48 Guide Star - ON target: 0.05, 0.32 (4 of 5)
03:23:54 Guide Star - off target: -0.54, 0.17 (14 of 36)
03:24:00 Guide Star - ON target: -0.04, -0.19 (1 of 5)
03:24:06 Guide Star - ON target: 0.14, -0.19 (2 of 5)
03:24:12 Guide Star - ON target: 0.07, -0.38 (3 of 5)
03:24:18 Guide Star - ON target: -0.02, -0.13 (4 of 5)
03:24:24 Guide Star - ON target: -0.26, -0.35 (5 of 5)
03:24:24 Guider is settled.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

03:24:25 Start image 15 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 0 (Red).
03:29:32 Finished image 15 of 58.
03:29:34 Stats: Filter=Red, Temp=-5.2, FocPos=4886, ®FWHM=3.16
03:29:34 Guider tracking.
03:29:35 Start image 16 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 1 (Green).
03:34:43 Finished image 16 of 58.
03:34:45 Stats: Filter=Green, Temp=-5.2, FocPos=4870, ®FWHM=4.59
03:34:45 Guider tracking.
03:34:46 Start image 17 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 2 (Blue).
03:39:53 Finished image 17 of 58.
03:39:55 Stats: Filter=Blue, Temp=-5.2, FocPos=4881, ®FWHM=4.21
03:39:55 Guider tracking.
03:39:56 Start image 18 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 3 (IDAS).
03:45:03 Finished image 18 of 58.
03:45:05 Stats: Filter=IDAS, Temp=-5.3, FocPos=4819, ®FWHM=5.35
03:45:05 Guider tracking.
03:45:06 Start image 19 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 4 (Ha).
03:55:13 Finished image 19 of 58.
03:55:15 Stats: Filter=Ha, Temp=-5.3, FocPos=4908, ®FWHM=2.54
03:55:15 Guider tracking.
03:55:17 Start image 20 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 5 (O-III).
04:05:24 Finished image 20 of 58.
04:05:26 Stats: Filter=O-III, Temp=-5.4, FocPos=4904, ®FWHM=2.63
04:05:26 Guider tracking.
04:05:27 Start image 21 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 6 (S-II).
04:15:35 Finished image 21 of 58.
04:15:37 Stats: Filter=S-II, Temp=-5.5, FocPos=4877, ®FWHM=2.85
04:15:37 Guider tracking.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

04:15:38 Current Focuser Temperature: -5.5
04:15:39 Dithering mount.
04:15:53 Finished dithering mount: 7.6" S, 7.9" W
04:15:59 Best guide star candidate: 608.52, 89.17
04:16:01 Autoguiding started.
04:16:07 Guide Star - off target: -0.40, -0.52 (1 of 36)
04:16:13 Guide Star - off target: 0.45, -0.20 (2 of 36)
04:16:19 Guide Star - ON target: -0.22, -0.37 (1 of 5)
04:16:25 Guide Star - off target: -0.51, 0.13 (4 of 36)
04:16:32 Guide Star - ON target: 0.13, 0.09 (1 of 5)
04:16:38 Guide Star - ON target: 0.07, -0.18 (2 of 5)
04:16:44 Guide Star - ON target: -0.02, -0.23 (3 of 5)
04:16:50 Guide Star - ON target: -0.20, -0.17 (4 of 5)
04:16:56 Guide Star - ON target: -0.34, 0.16 (5 of 5)
04:16:56 Guider is settled.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

04:16:57 Start image 22 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 0 (Red).
04:22:05 Finished image 22 of 58.
04:22:07 Stats: Filter=Red, Temp=-5.6, FocPos=4886, ®FWHM=3.03
04:22:07 Guider tracking.
04:22:08 Start image 23 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 1 (Green).
04:27:15 Finished image 23 of 58.
04:27:17 Stats: Filter=Green, Temp=-5.6, FocPos=4870, ®FWHM=4.36
04:27:17 Guider tracking.
04:27:19 Start image 24 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 2 (Blue).
04:32:26 Finished image 24 of 58.
04:32:28 Stats: Filter=Blue, Temp=-5.6, FocPos=4881, ®FWHM=4.05
04:32:28 Guider tracking.
04:32:29 Start image 25 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 3 (IDAS).
04:37:36 Finished image 25 of 58.
04:37:38 Stats: Filter=IDAS, Temp=-5.6, FocPos=4819, ®FWHM=5.35
04:37:38 Guider tracking.
04:37:39 Start image 26 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 4 (Ha).
04:47:47 Finished image 26 of 58.
04:47:49 Stats: Filter=Ha, Temp=-5.6, FocPos=4908, ®FWHM=2.66
04:47:49 Guider tracking.
04:47:50 Start image 27 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 5 (O-III).
04:57:58 Finished image 27 of 58.
04:58:00 Stats: Filter=O-III, Temp=-5.7, FocPos=4904, ®FWHM=3.15
04:58:00 Guider tracking.
04:58:01 Start image 28 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 6 (S-II).
05:08:08 Finished image 28 of 58.
05:08:10 Stats: Filter=S-II, Temp=-5.8, FocPos=4877, ®FWHM=3.01
05:08:10 Guider tracking.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

05:08:12 Meridian Crossed.
05:08:12 Current Focuser Temperature: -5.8
05:08:13 Calling @Focus2 for refocusing.
05:12:36 @Focus2 Result: Success
05:12:37 Returning from focusing star to target.
05:12:37 Attempting Closed-Loop-Slew to: ngc4631
05:13:50 CLS Status: ngc4631 success.
05:13:51 Mount direction: West, altitude: 79 degrees.
05:13:51 Temma re-synched.
05:13:57 Best guide star candidate: 83.97, 425.59
05:13:59 Autoguiding started.
05:14:05 Guide Star - off target: -0.66, -0.59 (1 of 36)
05:14:11 Guide Star - off target: 0.08, -0.53 (2 of 36)
05:14:17 Guide Star - ON target: -0.09, -0.30 (1 of 5)
05:14:23 Guide Star - ON target: 0.06, -0.31 (2 of 5)
05:14:29 Guide Star - ON target: -0.03, -0.27 (3 of 5)
05:14:36 Guide Star - ON target: -0.08, -0.24 (4 of 5)
05:14:42 Guide Star - ON target: 0.04, -0.28 (5 of 5)
05:14:42 Guider is settled.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

05:14:53 Start image 29 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 0 (Red).
05:20:00 Finished image 29 of 58.
05:20:02 Stats: Filter=Red, Temp=-5.9, FocPos=4862, ®FWHM=3.80
05:20:02 Guider tracking.
05:20:03 Start image 30 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 1 (Green).
05:25:11 Finished image 30 of 58.
05:25:13 Stats: Filter=Green, Temp=-5.9, FocPos=4846, ®FWHM=4.45
05:25:13 Guider tracking.
05:25:14 Start image 31 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 2 (Blue).
05:30:22 Finished image 31 of 58.
05:30:24 Stats: Filter=Blue, Temp=-6, FocPos=4857, ®FWHM=3.88
05:30:24 Guider tracking.
05:30:25 Start image 32 of 58 - 300 seconds through filter 3 (IDAS).
05:35:32 Finished image 32 of 58.
05:35:34 Stats: Filter=IDAS, Temp=-5.9, FocPos=4795, ®FWHM=5.52
05:35:34 Guider tracking.
05:35:35 Start image 33 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 4 (Ha).
05:45:43 Finished image 33 of 58.
05:45:45 Stats: Filter=Ha, Temp=-6, FocPos=4884, ®FWHM=2.96
05:45:45 Guider tracking.
05:45:46 Start image 34 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 5 (O-III).
05:55:54 Finished image 34 of 58.
05:55:56 Stats: Filter=O-III, Temp=-6, FocPos=4880, ®FWHM=2.92
05:55:56 Guider tracking.
05:55:57 Start image 35 of 58 - 600 seconds through filter 6 (S-II).
06:06:04 Finished image 35 of 58.
06:06:06 Stats: Filter=S-II, Temp=-5.8, FocPos=4853, ®FWHM=3.24
06:06:06 Guider tracking.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

06:06:08 Morning Twilight.
06:06:09 Parking mount.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------
-[Abnormal End ngc4631]-
-------------------------------------------------------------------------


"She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts, kid. I've made a lot of special modifications myself." -Han Solo



#53 orlyandico

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Posted 23 January 2016 - 12:03 AM

I have to echo a bit of groz' comments here.

 

I personally have gotten to the point where I won't buy hardware unless there's Linux support. Which may be in the form of a vendor-provided binary (not so good), an open-source library, or specifications.

 

I'm lucky that SBIG and Astro-Physics both fall in this category.

 

It is true that providing specifications will motivate some developers to build support for one's product, but many manufacturers don't want to provide specs (or only want to provide an opaque binary).

 

This is not unique to astronomy gear, hardly. Even graphics cards often have substandard Linux support because the manufacturers don't provide adequate documentation. And the graphics card market is far, far larger than the astronomy market.

 

So while groz's point that device support need not be expensive (by letting open-source developers support it) is correct, the reality is that manufacturers have an ingrained attitude that is open-source unfriendly. So they end up either supporting Linux/OS X themselves (sometimes well, sometimes badly), or they don't support these other OS's at all.

 

Windows is not an ideal platform, but it works fine for the vast majority of people (even astro-imagers). Sometimes you just got to work with what you have. Or, be very mindful that the astronomy gear you buy is supported on your choice of OS.

 

(typed on a Windows laptop, because this is what is at hand.. but I plan to get another Mac for my astro imaging soon)



#54 Phil Cowell

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Posted 23 January 2016 - 09:38 PM

The Mac lets you run multiple OS's. Just use Parallels or some other virtualization. Run Windows in a VM which has the added benefit of keeping Windows in its sandbox. Only thing it doesn't fix is apps that have Windows 10 incompatibility still do in a VM  :lol:



#55 Jarrod

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Posted 27 January 2016 - 10:08 AM

I am a reasonably experienced AVX/Mac user who recently switched to imaging with a Windows tablet, but without ASCOM.  I recently had this discussion on the PHD2 guiding group, about using the drift alignment feature without an ASCOM connection to the mount.  If you are interested, read through it to get an idea of some of the issues at hand.

 

The short answer is that it can be done, but ASCOM makes it easier.  The long answer, which isn't shown in the public discussion (I traded some private emails with other Celestron mount users) was that a *properly* done 2+4+ASPA alignment on the AVX can do just as good a job as the PHD2 drift alignment, so drift is really not necessary.  By *properly* done, I mean:

 

1. Select a star in the right part of the sky for the ASPA procedure.  This would be something near the meridian and high in the sky (but not overhead - say, just above the celestial equator)

 

2. Do something to account for PE.  Programming the PEC function and turning it on would be one way.  However, while I've had good luck with the PEC feature itself (it corrected my PE from ~30" down to ~10", with a dramatically reduced slope across the board), I have not had good luck guiding with PEC enabled.  You could instead make the Alt/Az adjustment and then note how the star moves through one worm cycle (and making further adjustment if necessary, to keep that movement centered).

 

Note that (2) needs to be taken into account to get the best out of the PHD2 drift alignment feature as well.  In any case, it may not be necessary since you are guiding and PE will be guided out anyway. I rarely worry about it.  That said, you do want a good polar alignment to minimize adjustments to DEC during guiding.  We all know that the DEC axis is the primary weakness of this mount.  If you are bent on getting the best polar alignment possible, worry about PE, and be prepared to exercise patience because I believe the worm period is 10 minutes.


Edited by Jarrod, 27 January 2016 - 10:43 AM.

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#56 kjeanpaul

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Posted 12 February 2019 - 10:45 AM

Hello, this topic is very old, neverthless, here some update: KStars/EKOS runs on multiple platforms including MacOS X. It works pretty well for guiding an AVX mount. Guiding module is part of EKOS. This software is open-source and free of charge.




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