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Details of a Wireless EAA Setup

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#26 Noah4x4

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 08:37 AM

 

 

To be fair, RAC19 was running at 20V without mishap and has since had his NUC running at 12V for some hours without problems, but Intel also say that potential damage can occur if less than 11.6v.

I just checked no load voltages my multimeter.

 

NUC power adapter 19.36 Volts

MaxOak K2 “20 Volt” output 19.27 Volts

MaxOak K2 “12 Volt” output 12.07 Volts

 

These would all be a little lower with a load connected but I would need  a break-out-box to get measurements under load, which I might try to do.

 

As always, anyone not prepared to a risk, should stay strictly with the manufacturers advice. Personally, I am happy to use the MaxOak battery on either “12 Volts” or “20 Volts” but I would not want induce anyone else to take a risk that they are not prepared to live with.

 

RAC19, I trust you far more than either KayoMaxstar or Intel. But I don't want to fry my £525 investment and not have the benefit of the Intel warranty. It is proving difficult to obtain any manufacturer guidance.

 

The fact that the "20v' (19.27v) output of the MaxOak is less than the NUC 'brick' (19.36v) suggests there is no risk from using the MaxOak K2, and it does seems to be working fine for you.  But unhelpfully, nowhere in the NUC Support Forum is there any guidance as regards using external power except advice from Intel contributors that it is wise to use a DC/DC 19v voltage regulator to ensure 19v. No thread ends with any actual battery recommendation for the NUC. 

 

Yet most battery manufacturers guarantee compatibility with specific laptops (Dell, HP, Toshiba etc) but the  Intel NUC isn't listed  I have since found just one battery "guaranteed" to be compatible with an NUC at 19v (from www.psaparts.co.uk), but none that also simultaneously output 12v for other devices. This is the PSA model VP-V6N56D has 1x 19v (can be varied); 1x10.8v, 2 x 5v. But this doesnt work as 10.8v is too low for my camera. I am going  to try with my Tracer 8aH. But am now struggling to find a cigarette lighter connector that fits a NUC. I find this all surprising, notably the lack of help from Intel. 



#27 davidparks

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 11:36 AM

I just checked no load voltages my multimeter.

 

NUC power adapter 19.36 Volts

MaxOak K2 “20 Volt” output 19.27 Volts

MaxOak K2 “12 Volt” output 12.07 Volts

 

I'll be receiving a MaxOak K2-50000mAh this Wednesday, and will also check the outputs via meter, this will give us another data point (hopefully corroborating).



#28 Rac19

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 02:01 PM

 

RAC19, I trust you far more than either KayoMaxstar or Intel. But I don't want to fry my £525 investment and not have the benefit of the Intel warranty. It is proving difficult to obtain any manufacturer guidance.

Noah4x4. I agree that, just because I am prepared to “risk it”, it doesn’t mean that everyone else should blindly follow. Each of us needs make our individual decision and accept the consequences. Manufacturers are only too happy to use any departure from published specifications (no matter how trivial) as justification to void their warranty.  I suspect that using anything other than the supplied power adapter could potentially invitesuch a response.

 

NOTE: The voltages that I have measured are “no load” and will be lower under load, just how how much lower will depend on how tightly the electronics of the battery and the NUC adapter regulate the voltage.

 

One day, I will probably make a breakout cable so that I can measure the voltages under load. The ultimate test, I suppose, is the survival (or not) of my NUC. I am not too concerned personally about the level of risk.


Edited by Rac19, 15 January 2018 - 02:15 PM.


#29 Noah4x4

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 03:01 PM

I had my NUC running fine today at 12v using my Tracer 8aH.

 

But what I am now intending is running the NUC using a 27000maH '2-Power' 19 volt battery that the manufacturer guarantees is definitely NUC compatible. It is only 188mm x 114mm x 22mm so will fit neatly behind the NUC strapped to the Evolution mount.

 

I will then run my Camera and Microfocuser using the Tracer battery. This is so small it can be strapped to the OTA using Zacfton cable ties. Tried this fitting tonight and it works superby resting between Starsense Camera and RACI Finderscope almost over the mounts pivot (so no great adjustment to balance).

 

Think I am getting somewhere now! 



#30 Rac19

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 03:40 PM

 

But what I am now intending is running the NUC using a 27000maH '2-Power' 19 volt battery that the manufacturer guarantees is definitely NUC compatible. It is only 188mm x 114mm x 22mm so will fit neatly behind the NUC strapped to the Evolution mount.

 

Noah. Assuming that the 27 Ah is at 3.7 Volts that is 99.9 Wh, let's call it 100 Wh. If your NUC 5i draws 25 W (it may be as high as 30 W), you should get 4 hours max. out of it. It seems to be a convention to de-rate the manufacturer's claim by 25% (similar to car manufacturer's fuel consumption claims) , it's more likely that you will get 3 plus hours, maybe 3.5 or 3.75 hours.

 

I ran my NUC 3i on a 20 Ah Anker battery and I think that it lasted 3 hours or so. I actually let it run to flat and the NUC seemed to die reasonably gracefully. There was no power cycling as the voltage became marginal, it switched off just once, requiring the power button to be pressed to restart it. What's more, Windows started normally the next time, no mention of not having shut down properly.


Edited by Rac19, 15 January 2018 - 04:45 PM.

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#31 roelb  Happy Birthday!

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 05:38 PM

quote: "But am now struggling to find a cigarette lighter connector that fits a NUC."

 

see: https://www.amazon.c...VAJK9PXYKERZ04Q


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#32 Noah4x4

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 05:56 PM

Thanks RAC19, very helpful. As you know I am not very knowledgable regards power matters. However, I am very practical....

 

I had assumed circa four hours when running the NUC at 19v  so your thoughts are reassuring. But if I ran the NUC at 16 volts would its 27mAh capacity last longer or shorter? The '2-power' pack offers 19v/3.5A or 16v/4A. I know watts = amps x volts so at 19v surely that's 66.6W and at 16v that's 64W. But I have not a clue which voltage is better (help!). All the gear and no idea, that's me!

 

However, four hours is typically sufficient for me if/when operating the NUC using battery power.  It is pretty rare here to get a longer break in the clouds and most of my sessions are often quite short!

 

Then my camera draws less than 2A and the microfocuser trivial, so I should also get about four hours from my Tracer 8aH for those. The Evolution mount, does, of course have it's own internal power. How people manage when they must power scope, autoguider and other paraphernalia all night escapes me!  I am using TeamViewer so my laptop in my office is on mains power.

 

For trips to dark sky sites, I will probably take a Celestron Power Tank simply as additional back up if I suspect that I will need power for longer than four hours (the NUC and Camera can then run at its 12V) . I was surprised to see that it too has only has a rating of  a meagre17aH. Folk with all the extra gear must struggle (at the very least with battery weight!).  I have evidently been spoilt to date by the Evolution's internal battery 10 hour capability,  my laptop's 6 hours and my DSLR internal battery. Never previously had to consider power.

 

At home, I will generally only use battery power when it's a bit damp underfoot (e.g. dodging between clouds!). I always leave my scope set up in my office (converted garage) and these power units are so light they can stay affixed without impairing my ability to carry my gear fully assembled; notably, when compared to the 15lbs added weight of my wedge which is being discarded in favour of Hyperstar. My back is loving this change. Damp conditions here generally mean clouds have recently departed and there are probably more of them following behind, so speed of set up is frequently desirable. The battery units assist with this.

 

On dry evenings with the prospect of a longer session, I proposed to use my mains adapters. These 'bricks' are protected inside a wholly waterproof socket box raised off the ground that neatly clips to my tripod legs (using 1.5 inch 'tool clips') and a single outdoor heavy duty power cable then runs to my RCD protected garden mains power supply. See https://www.cloudyni...etup/?p=8336523 . This route does take an additional 10 minutes of set up. Another reason for giving up my wedge in favour of Hyperstar was its crazy long set up time. This will be a breeze by comparison. Again, thanks for your help. I am sure this thread has been helpful to others.


Edited by Noah4x4, 15 January 2018 - 06:14 PM.


#33 Noah4x4

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 06:04 PM

quote: "But am now struggling to find a cigarette lighter connector that fits a NUC."

 

see: https://www.amazon.c...VAJK9PXYKERZ04Q

Thanks Roelb. I got one earlier today from Maplin. But unlike the Nexstar 5.5mm external /2.1mm internal size cigarette lighter plug the Intel NUC takes a 5.5mm/2.5mm.  I hence had to find one with multiple plug adapters including this largest internal size. Shame manufacturers can't settle on one common sense standard to make our lives easier. But then, perhaps only astronomers run laptops and other gear on external batteries.



#34 Rac19

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 06:17 PM

 

But if I ran the NUC at 16 volts would its 27mAh capacity last longer or shorter?

Any difference in run time will be slight. The NUC will draw more current at a lower voltage for the same Watts. If the NUC draws 2 Amps at 19 Volts that's 38 Watts. At 16 volts 38 Watts will convert to 38/16=2.375 Amps. The 2-Power battery has a claimed capacity of 100 Wh, as already calculated, so regardless of whether the input voltage is 16 volts or 19 volts, the nominal run time is 100/38=2.63 hours. Of course you estimate that your NUC will draw less than 2 Amps which is why I think that the power draw will be between 25 and 30 Watts.

 

The number that the battery manufacturers really should quote is Wh (Watt Hour) not Amp hours or Milli-amp hours.


Edited by Rac19, 15 January 2018 - 07:08 PM.

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#35 roelb  Happy Birthday!

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 07:00 PM

Noah,

 

I still think that the MAXOAK K2 (185 Wh) 'powerbank' is a better global solution to your setup.

Just one battery and a single 12 V for all your 'paraphernalia'.

One remark: don't use the 12 V and 20 V outputs simultaneously.

You can even power a dew strip which is a 'must-have' for a SCT.

 

Here a YouTube about the MAXOAK K2https://www.youtube....h?v=It9ycjRMlU0


Edited by roelb, 15 January 2018 - 07:01 PM.


#36 Rac19

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Posted 15 January 2018 - 10:26 PM

Noah,

 

I still think that the MAXOAK K2 (185 Wh) 'powerbank' is a better global solution to your setup.

Just one battery and a single 12 V for all your 'paraphernalia'.

One remark: don't use the 12 V and 20 V outputs simultaneously.

You can even power a dew strip which is a 'must-have' for a SCT.

 

Here a YouTube about the MAXOAK K2https://www.youtube....h?v=It9ycjRMlU0

That is what I am going to do for sure, especially as I have already purchased the battery.


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#37 Noah4x4

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 03:35 AM

I suspect I have probably goofed here, and I will come clean as I don't want to encourage or discourage people from adopting the MaxOak K2 50000mAh. Folk are best served taking advice from Roelb and RAC19 who own one.

 

But when Intel Support is telling me not to run my NUC at 20v input and KayoMaxstar won't assure me that its MaxOak K2 50aH power bank is compatible with a £525 NUC device then my overly cautious self kicked in. But all the user evidence does suggest that the MaxOak running a NUC at 20v is probably fine. I have also had my NUC running fine at 12v from my Tracer 8Ah. So probably the most sensible thing to do was to run all my stuff from the 12v Output of the MaxOak. But even there, Intel Support was casting doubts about potential damage if the voltage dropped below 11.6v. My Tracer is guaranteed stable at a steady 12v (which perhaps explains it's high price). Frankly, I wish I had seen the video highlighted by Roelb first.

 

I have purchased a '2-Power' power bank because it is the only manufacturer I have found to guarantee that it's 27aH power bank is 100% NUC compatible at it's 19v output (it offers no 12v option). Other manufacturers willingly confirm compatibility wth Dell, Toshiba, HP etc, but never mention Intel NUC. How odd? . I suspect this caution arises because the NUC is a kit computer and Intel has no control over some components going into its carcass. However, now that Intel is supplying complete computer bundles inclusive of RAM, Graphics, HDD surely it could make more effort to evaluate suitable power banks; or perhaps even white-label suitable candidates as its own brand to reassure customers? But I have a birthday coming up in five months. If RAC19's NUC is still chugging fine at 12v on his MaxOak K2 I will confidently purchase one, as on the face of things, it is probably the best power/weight/bulk compromise if confident of compatibility.



#38 Rac19

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 03:56 AM

 

I have purchased a '2-Power' power bank because it is the only manufacturer I have found to guarantee that it's 27aH power bank is 100% NUC compatible.

Hi Noah. Even though the retailer says that the 2-Power battery is NUC compatible, I do wonder where you would stand if the NUC failed. I can see Intel and 2-Power playing the blame game with the retailer standing back. An exceptionally customer focussed retailer might help out eventually, but that would be unusual.

 

I think that the only way to deny Intel wriggle-room would be to stay with the adaptor that they supplied. I am on a mission for a cord wrap free set-up, so I am going to take my chances. I don’t feel that I am taking a big risk.

 

It’s a question of how much risk you prepared to take. I am not at all sure that retailer’s statement of compatibility is worth much if things go wrong. Legally legally and morally it maybe worth something, but in the real-world maybe not.


Edited by Rac19, 16 January 2018 - 04:14 AM.


#39 Rac19

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 05:00 AM

 

If RAC19's NUC is still chugging fine at 12v on his MaxOak K2 I will confidently purchase one

Noah, if my NUC goes up in smoke, I promise to let you knowfrown.gif.


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#40 coldbutdiggingti

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 06:48 AM

Not to hijack your thread, but I've noticed a number of folks attaching an ASI directly to a camera lens. How exactly, and how does one then securely attach that unit to a mount?



#41 roelb  Happy Birthday!

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 11:44 AM

 

 

To be fair, RAC19 was running at 20V without mishap and has since had his NUC running at 12V for some hours without problems, but Intel also say that potential damage can occur if less than 11.6v.

I just checked no load voltages my multimeter.

 

NUC power adapter 19.36 Volts

MaxOak K2 “20 Volt” output 19.27 Volts

MaxOak K2 “12 Volt” output 12.07 Volts

 

These would all be a little lower with a load connected but I would need  a break-out-box to get measurements under load, which I might try to do.

 

As always, anyone not prepared to a risk, should stay strictly with the manufacturers advice. Personally, I am happy to use the MaxOak battery on either “12 Volts” or “20 Volts” but I would not want induce anyone else to take a risk that they are not prepared to live with.

 

Did tension measurement on the 'MAXOAK K2' (185 Wh) (fully charged):

"20 V" output: 19.56 V

"12 V" output: 12.22 V (12.17 V with KODLIX AP42 mini PC connected at ~1/2 load)



#42 Noah4x4

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 11:58 AM

 

 

I have purchased a '2-Power' power bank because it is the only manufacturer I have found to guarantee that it's 27aH power bank is 100% NUC compatible.

Hi Noah. Even though the retailer says that the 2-Power battery is NUC compatible, I do wonder where you would stand if the NUC failed. I can see Intel and 2-Power playing the blame game with the retailer standing back. An exceptionally customer focussed retailer might help out eventually, but that would be unusual.

 

I think that the only way to deny Intel wriggle-room would be to stay with the adaptor that they supplied. I am on a mission for a cord wrap free set-up, so I am going to take my chances. I don’t feel that I am taking a big risk.

 

It’s a question of how much risk you prepared to take. I am not at all sure that retailer’s statement of compatibility is worth much if things go wrong. Legally legally and morally it maybe worth something, but in the real-world maybe not.

 

UK consumer protection law is massively more powerful than that in the USA and probably also Australia. Here, the retailer claims to be an "authorised 2-Power distributor" and is using its logo and claims to be a BSI Certified ISO 9001-2008 qualified company" (hence highly regulated). Their advert is also explicit, says "guaranteed to meet or exceed the original manufacturer's specification for a (make/model)....".  The retailer and the manufacturer that it represents wouldn't have a chance of a rebuttal in any EU court (e.g. whilst the UK still in the EU). I also paid by credit card. Under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act I also  have some limited protection there. The credit card company is even liable if my purchase was stolen in the first 90 days. Yes, along with our wonderful (free) National Health Service, protection like this makes Britain a great place to live (unless you are a crooked trader). But it also drives awareness and caution. Like mine.


Edited by Noah4x4, 16 January 2018 - 11:58 AM.


#43 Noah4x4

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 12:06 PM

Not to hijack your thread, but I've noticed a number of folks attaching an ASI directly to a camera lens. How exactly, and how does one then securely attach that unit to a mount?

Its what this thread is for, debating solutions to EAA challenges.

 

You need an adapter something like this; https://www.365astro...SI-Cameras.html. Then you need another adapter that might affix to your OTA. A good astronomy retailer will advise you.


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#44 Rac19

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 04:32 PM

 

UK consumer protection law is massively more powerful than that in the USA and probably also Australia.

Firstly, I don't believe that there will be a problem, so hopefully the situation will not arise.

 

Australian consumer law is quite strict, on paper at least. If an item is not "not fit for purpose" then you can claim on the retailer, regardless of their (or the manufacture's) terms and conditions. Actually prosecuting a claim could be another matter depending on the specific circumstances. If the NUC and battery were purchased from the same retailer and that retailer and stated that the two items were compatible, that should be covered as "not fit for purpose", however. 


Edited by Rac19, 16 January 2018 - 04:33 PM.


#45 coldbutdiggingti

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 08:57 PM

S/b able to get a nuc for way less that $500?



#46 coldbutdiggingti

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 09:06 PM

And a raspberry sub-$150? Just saying



#47 Rac19

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Posted 16 January 2018 - 10:17 PM

And a raspberry sub-$150? Just saying

I have already tried the Raspberry Pi. The first problem is that it doesn’t have USB 3 which is essential to handle live-view and image capture, especially for hi-res cameras such the ZWO ASI1600MC (16 MP). Also, while suitable software can be found for the Pi, there is much more for Windows. I suspect also that the Pi lacks the required processing capacity.


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#48 Rac19

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Posted 17 January 2018 - 02:21 AM

 

Not to hijack your thread, but I've noticed a number of folks attaching an ASI directly to a camera lens. How exactly, and how does one then securely attach that unit to a mount?

Its what this thread is for, debating solutions to EAA challenges.

 

You need an adapter something like this; https://www.365astro...SI-Cameras.html. Then you need another adapter that might affix to your OTA. A good astronomy retailer will advise you.

 

With regard to mounting such a camera, the image below shows a simple aluminium angle mounted on a dovetail clamp. A standard tripod ball mount is then attached to that. To be honest this is quite fiddly to align and easily bumped off alignment. I plan to use a Manfrotto three axis mount which is more robust (and quite heavy) and can be adjusted one axis at a time. The this that is stopping is sourcing a 1/2” to 3/8” adapter, would you believe.

 

Manfrotto link.

https://www.bhphotov...unior_Head.html

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • CameraMount.JPG

Edited by Rac19, 17 January 2018 - 02:40 AM.


#49 Noah4x4

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Posted 17 January 2018 - 02:49 AM

 

And a raspberry sub-$150? Just saying

I have already tried the Raspberry Pi. The first problem is that it doesn’t have USB 3 which is essential to handle live-view and image capture, especially for hi-res cameras such the ZWO ASI1600MC (16 MP). Also, while suitable software can be found for the Pi, there is much more for Windows. I suspect also that the Pi lacks the required processing capacity.

 

Raspberry Pi does not have USB3 and it also has merely 802.11n WiFi.  This can again be too slow in wholly wireless set ups compared to 802.11ac. This probably won't be upgraded in the Pi until 2019.

 

Raspberry Pi will probably work in a wired (USB)  environment if you have a small sensor/fewer pixel camera, but RAC19 has a ZWO AS1600MC and me an Atik Horizon. Our quest was also to become wireless/cordless (now achieved). That takes a lot of processing power. He chose a Core-i3 NUC and me an i5 NUC because we were concern that lesser Celestron or Atom models or cheaper Compute Sticks might not have the 'ooomph' to do all.

 

I also wanted to future proof my set up. OK, RAC19 might have paid £100 more than strictly necessary and me £200 more,  but there can be no definitive answer to the question, "what is the minimum specification", as each time you add another feature (wireless focus; camera autoguider; etc) it needs more 'ooomph'. You can probably replicate what we have done for less outlay with a smaller sensor/lower pixel camera, but you know that you will eventually upgrade and with the advent of large sensor/pixel number CMOS prices should tumble compared to CCD.


Edited by Noah4x4, 17 January 2018 - 02:56 AM.


#50 coldbutdiggingti

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Posted 17 January 2018 - 06:48 AM

Thanks rac19. Agree raspberry is on the low end. Appeals to me cause I'm cheap, but sometimes cheap just doesn't cut it. Still I'll prob play with one since I have piles of hardware hanging around so can tinker a bit ☺




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