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EZ PUSH TO

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#251 Natdiamond

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Posted 24 September 2020 - 07:52 AM

I'm interested in this. I have a Zhumell Z12 and your ez push to app & equipment. Are you saying I can use that equipment and some extra stuff to use the stars in the sky to point my Z12 automatically?


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#252 bjkaras

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Posted 25 September 2020 - 03:08 AM

Yes but real men use iPhones  lol.gif

That’s what I use. I have an app called PS Align Pro that works reasonably well. Eventually I want to get an Argo Navis though.



#253 psh

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Posted 26 September 2020 - 07:35 AM

I'm interested in this. I have a Zhumell Z12 and your ez push to app & equipment. Are you saying I can use that equipment and some extra stuff to use the stars in the sky to point my Z12 automatically?



#254 Maxtrixbass

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Posted 09 October 2020 - 09:11 PM

I got the EZ Push To today for my Z12. Installation was a breeze. Seems to be working as advertised, at least around my living room (cloudy).

 

 Can anyone recommend a power supply that works? My power supply keeps turning off. Eric from EZ Push To mentioned  theXiaomi 5000mAh power bank, but I can't find it in the US.



#255 Phil1

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Posted 09 October 2020 - 09:42 PM

Someone else suggested a double usb cable. I ordered one and plug EZ Push To into one side and my tablet or phone into the other. It works and stops my power supply from turning off. Hope this helps.



#256 Maxtrixbass

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Posted 09 October 2020 - 10:09 PM

Someone else suggested a double usb cable. I ordered one and plug EZ Push To into one side and my tablet or phone into the other. It works and stops my power supply from turning off. Hope this helps.

Thanks for the response.

 

I'm not clear what you mean. Do you mean running two cables off the power supply so both the EZ and tablet are plugged in at once?

 

I don't think my usb charger has two outputs (only one in and one out).  Is the double USB cable you mentioned a USB splitter cable, that is one plug into the power tank and two plugs on the other end you can plug into? Would, from an electronics standpoint, it be better to run a small USB hub and plug both in that way?

 

I could "just try it", but I've blown several gadgets by plugging them in to the wrong power...


Edited by Maxtrixbass, 09 October 2020 - 10:49 PM.


#257 Phil1

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Posted 09 October 2020 - 10:58 PM

Here's a picture of what I use. EZ Push To plugs into one outlet tablet or phone in the other. I've never had any problems. But I don't know how it would work for anyone else. 

IMG_20201009_234706.jpg


Edited by Phil1, 09 October 2020 - 11:07 PM.

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#258 Maxtrixbass

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Posted 13 October 2020 - 10:12 PM

The clouds briefly parted and I got a chance to try out the EZ Push To.  Two thumbs up.

 

Once I got the hang of the app and star alignment, targets were just there in the eyepiece. Not bad for a setup that's about a 1600mm FL. The installation on my Z12 was easy and quick.  Best $99 I have spent.


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#259 Men2Boyz

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Posted 13 October 2020 - 10:37 PM

I pulled trigger on this for my AD10 tonight. I originally planned on printing out setting circle and using digital inclinometer but at this price point, I think EZ Push To is a good deal.  I’m living in a Bortle 6 region with limited views of sky in my backyard. Will give my opinion when I get it working.


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#260 JagZilla

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 12:27 PM

After installation, can you still lift the OTA off the base, for transport, like you can in the stock configuration, or, do you have to disconnect/unbolt anything before lifting it off?



#261 Nuages

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Posted 19 October 2020 - 06:52 PM

I found Romer's installation video from 2017, but if the design hasn't changed it looks like you just have to pull off the EZ alt module before the OTA goes in or out.

 

https://youtu.be/uPRj3SxQ03g


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#262 Phil1

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Posted 19 October 2020 - 09:54 PM

You have to pull the EZ alt module off to remove the tube. But it's no problem it's held on with magnets. 


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#263 Men2Boyz

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Posted 25 October 2020 - 11:45 PM

I installed EZ Push-To on my Apertura AD10 recently. I used a battery pack scavenged from an old Celestron Nexstar scope to power it. The software was very confusing. I'm using iOS 14 on a new iPhone. You cannot pair the EZ Push-To hardware directly with the phone via the normal Bluetooth settings. The app performs the connection once you open it and select Bluetooth connection to Romer Optics in a submenu list. The YouTube videos for using the software are out of date and far from being comprehensive. They are for the 2018 version of their software and my downloaded app was version 3 which has only been out a month and differs from what is seen in the YouTube videos. There is a new fusion feature that allows some dob owners to eliminate the Altitude encoder connection and by attaching the phone with the app directly on the OTA, it can infer the altitude using the phones's hardware. The app says something about fusion detection after you've connected with Bluetooth and the started GPS detection but my scope was one of the types that this hardware/software combo was optimally designed to be used with, so the fusion feature was probably limited to using the GPS in my phone. I'm wondering now whether or not attaching my phone to the OTA might be helpful for accuracy but there is no mention of needing to do this with my scope.

 

There are no instructions to pre-level the scope, or to aim the OTA at polar north before using the software. You are only asked to use a level to balance the base before starting. Trying to figure out the app, I decide that 'Offsets' might be equivalent to 'Align' in some other company's goto software/hardware. 

 

Last night it was pea soup outside. I could not even visually locate Polaris without assistance. Mars was the brightest object in the sky. I already had my OTA roughly aligned with north before I plugged in the power supply to the EZ Push-To hardware. I picked Mars from a submenu and followed the arrows in the app to the target. I didn't see Mars in my finder scope's field right off the bat but at least I was close enough to maneuver Mars into the eyepiece. When Mars was well centered in my eyepiece I click Offset on the screen and the app moved the sky chart so that the circle around Mars fell inside the circle representing my scope's actual location. I push the telescope around a bit and then followed the on-screen arrows back to Mars. No problem, Mars was right in the middle of my eyepiece.

 

A bit later I decided I wanted to try the Polaris Offset in the app. It's still murky and I could not see Polaris with my naked eyes so I used coordinates from Sky Safari and a rough approximation of where true north was in my backyard and a digital inclinometer to get a starting point. I clicked on the Polaris Offset submenu in EZ Push-To app and followed arrows to its target. I manually centered Polaris in my eyepiece and clicked Offset again. I'm doing this with no idea of what I'm actually supposed to be doing or what the consequences would be but the app re-centers the target circle of Polaris and I hope that it's going to help improve targeting accuracy.  I decided to check on Mars again. The second Offset made locating Mars worse and I had to do another Offset on Mars. Obviously I was doing something wrong but there were no clear instructions for me on what the app was really doing. I saw a menu for offsetting multiple targets, which might differ from what I did when I Offset Polaris and Mars individually.

 

With Mars Offset for a second time, I decided to look for an object that was at least in the same quadrant as Mars so I chose Uranus. This time the app directed me to a little blue orb that had the right coordinates. My digital inclinometer and Sky Safari confirmed that I was at least at the correct altitude.  I'm calling it a direct hit. I looked up Pleiades in Sky Safari. I selected it in the EZ Push-To app but I couldn't figure out what to click after dialing in M45 to make the app change directly to the sky search screen.  I ended up in a submenu where I found that I could punch in RA/Dec coordinates for M45 after I looked them up in Sky Safari. Then I clicked go-to or something like that and the sky search screen appeared and I followed arrows to the target site. There was still nothing in the sky near this location that I could see with my naked eyes, just an empty hazy inkiness. But when I looked in the finder scope the Seven Sisters were smiling back at me. A 32mm Plossl eyepiece revealed more hidden gems that were invisible to my finder scope.

 

It's way past midnight and getting chilly, my Orion 7-21mm in a 2X Barlow was misting up when I returned for another look at Mars. SPC and albedo features were still visible and there was no excessive brightness because of the natural filter from the haze. I had gotten a taste of the potential value of this product and I didn't want to push my luck trying to locate more targets.

 

I am optimistic that this hardware is going to be very useful once I learn how to decipher the app.  I did not like how the replacement hardware in the AD10's base changed the feel of moving the OTA, much too loose compared with my original Apertura hardware. There is no adjustment that you can make without a wrench. The altitude knob on the right is a replacement for the original also and is partially covered by the encoder hardware but I didn't think it affected feel as much as the azimuth hardware change. I don't know whether all the Offsets are erased when the app is closed or retained until the user directs the app to forget them. Certainly if the scope is moved to a new location, a fresh database of Offsets would be desirable. There is a section that allows you to perform periodic error correction that looks interesting but I haven't attempted to use it.

 

It would be great if some experienced users could share their tips with the rest of us. A lot of people have communicated with the vender Eric and gleaned knowledge from him that helped them sort things out. I may have to email him if all my attempts to figure out the menus and submenus on my own don't pan out.  But for now I am happy to have gotten some meager positive results on my first night out.


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#264 Nuages

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Posted 27 October 2020 - 12:57 AM

Appreciate the report, with the plusses and minuses. I have ordered a Z8 so at some point I am likely to get either EZ Push To or a setting circle & angle gauge. Ease of use and ease of installation are advantages of the simpler option, but info like this helps in weighing whether the extra hassle and learning curve of the EZPT are right for me.



#265 Men2Boyz

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Posted 27 October 2020 - 02:27 PM

Nuages, I am waiting for a clear night to take the EZ Push To out for another spin. My first night was severely handicapped by not having visible alignment stars. Since then I have located proper instructions for EZPT’s use at the Romer Optics web site. The old YouTube videos need to be updated and improved upon so they match the current version of the software. I found the written instructions to be much more helpful.

 

The proper starting sequence is to get scope leveled, then align with Polaris alone for a quick start or better yet align with 3 stars that are in widely different regions of the sky for better accuracy. Only after this should you begin searching for objects through their menu. I had skipped the initial alignment because of poor sky conditions and hoped that offsets without a proper starting alignment would suffice. It didn’t. I learned that after entering a Messier number, to get EZPT to jump to the sky chart screen requires a long tap on that portion of the menu. Alignment and offset data are kept in the app’s database with an option to load them or ignore them when you restart the app. You should reset the database any time the scope is moved to a new location. Armed with new information I am looking forward to my second session with EZ Push-To. I expect better results this time around. 


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#266 Davensocal

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Posted 02 December 2020 - 04:23 PM

Men2Boyz- Thanks for all of the detail!  Unfortunately my EZ Push To is still sitting on the desk while a new base for my Z12 is being built.  I hope to install mine soon!


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#267 StarCurious

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Posted 04 January 2021 - 10:40 PM

After using the Android EZPT app, I finally got around to implement the Stellarium  for windows Plugin"

 

https://cdn.shopify....ar?v=1599570355

 

I found this video by Eric:

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=JgHLL2IBTj8

 

which was unfortunately out of date, as the new 2020 version of Plugin works differently.  I was confused by com port numbers and where to put which ones in the implementation.  The video was helpful, but I had to make notes and translate into com port numbers that worked on my Windows 10 installation on a 10 inch Asus Netbook (touchscreen).

 

I am summarizing the steps in the hope that these steps below may help others:

 

1. Write down your location coordinates to the full digit seconds, no decimal points - use whatever accurate GPS device you have.  I use these for my home location for Stellarium and EZPT Plugin, as well as SkySafari and Skywatcher SynScan App.

 

2. Install the Plugin and the Virtual Serial Drivers from the Kit onto Windows 10. 

 

3. Power on the EZPT, then in Windows 10, turn on Bluetooth. Run the Plugin.exe.  The 2020 version has 3 tabs - Location, EZPT, Stellarium.  Enter "Location" coordinates from Step 1.

 

4. In Windows Settings > Devices > Bluetooth, verify Romer Optics are paired (2 entries, one looks like a desktop tower, the other has a monitor.).  Then Click "More Bluetooth options.  The second tap is "COM Ports".  In the video "Outgoing" was "COM4" - Make a note of yours and call this A.  "Incoming" was "COM5" - Make a note of yours and call this B. 

 

5. Press the Windows Logo key and type "Device Manager".  Run it, and expand Ports (COM & LPT). In the video, you would see this:

 

com0com - serial port emulator (COM6)  - Make a note of yours and call this C

com0com - serial port emulator (COM7) -  Make a note of yours and call this  D

Standard Serial Over Bluetooth link (COM4) - Yours should be the same as A

Standard Serial Over Bluetooth link (COM5) - Yours should be the same as B

 

6. Now that you have noted values for A, B, C and D, the risk of mixing up the COM port numbers is reduced, and the rest of the installation should be straight forward.

 

7. In the EZPT Plugin second tab "EZ PushTo", change the COM port number to A, the Click "ON".  You should hear a beep and notice that the Alt Az readings change as you move the OTA.

 

8. In the EZPT Plugin third tab "Stellarium", change the COM port number to D, the Click "ON".  You should hear a beep and notice that the RA/DEC readings change as you move the OTA.  That's the top half. The bottom half readings would be nil until Plugin receives the RA/DEC from your first alignment. That's after finishing the setup of the EZPT Plugin in Stellarium.

 

9. The rest of the setup should not be confusing, and you can see this from the video, starting from 3:25. Use C in the Stellarium Telescope Control.

 

10. B is not used. 

 

Hope this helps and good luck.


Edited by StarCurious, 04 January 2021 - 10:47 PM.

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#268 NK351c

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Posted 05 January 2021 - 06:10 PM

After using the Android EZPT app, I finally got around to implement the Stellarium  for windows Plugin"...
 

StarCurious- How did it run for you overall? Smooth?

 

I finally got around to installing the EZPT on my Z10. After fiddling around during little run of cloudy nights, I did manage to get this to work inside the house with Stellarium as well. One other thing worth mentioning is (happen to me), after installing com0com I didn't have some ports in device manager.

 

com0com - serial port emulator (COM6) Didn't have this

com0com - serial port emulator (COM7) Didn't have this

Standard Serial Over Bluetooth link (COM4) Only this

Standard Serial Over Bluetooth link (COM5) and this

 

I took some screenshots of my setup and emailed Eric who surprisingly replied back within 15 mins at 10:00 at night shocked.gif. Come to find out, there is a blip in the readme file saying you might need to go into Bios and disable "Secure Boot". I was confused because I had COM4 / COM5 but not the others. Anyway, I rebooted and changed the setting, F10 save/exit and bingo COM6 and 7 were in the list.

 

Last Saturday was looking pretty good, so I practiced my connection procedure a few times and moved everything outside. When darkness fell I fired everything up and got it connected to Stellarium. I immediately noticed quite a bit of lagg from when I would move the scope to when it would respond on the screen, sometimes it would jump or only show half the distance i actually moved it. I moved my laptop as close as could to the scope. That helped a little but it was still to jumpy and would fall out of accuracy not long after a Ctrl-1 alignment. It was kinda cold that evening, so I'm not sure if that had something to do with or maybe back ground tasks running slowing it down, but it was working pretty smooth inside confused1.gif . After a good couple hours messing with Stellarium, i decided I didn't want waste the whole night so I switched to the EZ-TO-Push app on my iphone, which ran smooth and held accuracy. waytogo.gif

 

After comparing StarCurious post, to what I did, the only thing i can see I had done differently was use the "Plugins_EQ" app which only has two tabs (no location tab) vs the other one called "Plugins" which has 3 tabs. Next time I'll use that one and manually enter my location.

 

NK


Edited by NK351c, 05 January 2021 - 09:51 PM.

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#269 StarCurious

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Posted 05 January 2021 - 06:24 PM

StarCurious- How did it run for you overall? Smooth?

I don't know yet.  I won't be using the Dob until the Spring, with snow on the ground and kind of messy or slippery to move a bulky and heavy (to me) Dob outdoors.


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