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Firecapture erratic behavior during capture

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#1 Stephanh

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 10:31 AM

I have found that Firecapture has a very erratic behaviour when capturing video files.

Video file sizes are all different for the same ROI and exposure time.  If I set a fixed number of frames to capture, the captures stalls.  If I set a fixed period of capture time, the files end up being  of different sizes.   The frame rates of the captures video files are all over the place too.   I tried both SER and AVI,  same results.

I tried reducing the USB speed and it does not change a thing.

The frame rate shown on the screen during capture is always much higher than the actual frame rate of the video files.

 

If I use Sharpcap instead, all works like clock work.  The frame rate is very fast and consistent.  The video files are all of the same size and same frame rate

 

I use a Win10 laptop with USB 3.0 port, a SSD HD and a ASI224MC.

 

I would prefer Firecapture as it has guiding feature but I cannot get it to work reliably.

 

Am I missing something?

 

Thanks

 


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#2 leveye

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 12:05 PM

That's why I switched to Sharpcap. No more issues now.



#3 schu

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 09:40 PM

I had the same issues.

 

Here's what fixed it for me:  under Settings -> Misc -> Performance, check the "Force agressive memory recovery during capture" box.  This helped performance tremendously.  I must admit that Firecapture still does freeze & behave oddly on occasion, but for the most part captures have now been saving without incident.


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#4 TorstenEdelmann

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 11:00 PM

You can try using RAM buffer mode in FC. First increase heapsize (#1 in screenshot) to about 50% of your physical memory (general settings tab). Restart FC and enable RAM buffer mode (#2).

Torsten

Attached Thumbnails

  • heapsize.png

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#5 RedLionNJ

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Posted 13 April 2018 - 02:58 PM

+1 on a sufficiently-large heap size accompanied by a RAM buffer.  FireCapture is a workhorse. I fire it up, acquire my target, check focus, set ADC and check focus again, optimize exposure for the conditions/filter, check focus yet again and set autocapture to do it all by itself - maybe five or six capture runs before I re-check focus, ADC and focus and set it to autocapture again. Repeat until my session ends.

 

The vast majority of my early issues with FireCapture were due to early betas, even worse early ASI drivers and giving it insufficient memory to play with. It has been lovely and stable for over two years now.


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#6 Stephanh

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Posted 13 April 2018 - 06:06 PM

You can try using RAM buffer mode in FC. First increase heapsize (#1 in screenshot) to about 50% of your physical memory (general settings tab). Restart FC and enable RAM buffer mode (#2).
Torsten


I tried that and it worked! It works at 25% of RAM size for the heap size. I did not test at lower percentage.

#7 StewartB

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Posted 13 April 2018 - 10:27 PM

Hello Stephanh,

 

I originally had this problem when switching to USB3 cameras.

I would find missing frames and the FPS in the txt files was completely wrong.

 

I then modified the Heapsize setting to 8,192 MB and all was good from that point on.

 

 

Firecapture Heapstack.png

 

 

 

Stewart


Edited by StewartB, 13 April 2018 - 10:28 PM.


#8 Stephanh

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 10:51 AM

+1 on a sufficiently-large heap size accompanied by a RAM buffer.  FireCapture is a workhorse. I fire it up, acquire my target, check focus, set ADC and check focus again, optimize exposure for the conditions/filter, check focus yet again and set autocapture to do it all by itself - maybe five or six capture runs before I re-check focus, ADC and focus and set it to autocapture again. Repeat until my session ends.

 

The vast majority of my early issues with FireCapture were due to early betas, even worse early ASI drivers and giving it insufficient memory to play with. It has been lovely and stable for over two years now.

What is your procedure to check and re-check focus?  Use the planet or a bring star in the area?



#9 Sunspot

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 10:49 PM

You can try using RAM buffer mode in FC. First increase heapsize (#1 in screenshot) to about 50% of your physical memory (general settings tab). Restart FC and enable RAM buffer mode (#2).

Torsten

I have 8 gigs of RAM, set the Heap size to 4 gigs and 736  megs is the largest RAM buffer I can set. Does that sound correct?



#10 Stephanh

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Posted 15 April 2018 - 08:58 PM

I have 8 gigs of RAM, set the Heap size to 4 gigs and 736  megs is the largest RAM buffer I can set. Does that sound correct?

Dunno.   I tried at 50% of my RAM as suggested by Thorten and it worked.  I then tried at 25% and it still worked. I think I will keep it there.



#11 pastorgalactico

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 09:34 AM

Hola;
En mi captura de fuego tambiƩn solo puedo poner (2) solo hasta 736Mb y tengo 2 Gb.
Y no entiendo el de (1).
Adjunto.capturada.jpg


Edited by pastorgalactico, 18 April 2020 - 09:34 AM.


#12 TorstenEdelmann

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 02:11 AM

Hi pastorgalactico,

 

I'm sure you're running the x86 version of FC here where the max Java heap is limited to just a bit over 1GB. That's the reason why the heap size setting (#1) isn't available. The heapsize can only increased above that limit when using the x64 FC version where this setting is avaiable. In that case you would see "FireCapture v2.6.08 x64" in the windows title which isn't the case in your screenshot which proofs that this is the x86 version.

 

Torsten



#13 pastorgalactico

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 03:56 AM

Hello;
You are right Torsten, that screenshot is from my home PC and I can see that I can access that option you were saying, but in the observatory I only have a 32-bit PC and I cannot install the X64 one.
As if there is no choice but to throw with that until you change your PC to 64 bits.
With the 32-bit one, can the buffer only work up to 736Mb?
Greetings.

#14 TorstenEdelmann

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 04:55 AM

To get a bit more on a x86 system you need to try out. Start FireCapture_Debug.exe and insert the heap amount (in MB) starting with e.g. 1200. Press ENTER and see if FC starts. If yes close it, try again with a little more until FC doesn't start anymore. It mostly will fail when reaching 1400 or 1500MB. If you have found your amount of heap edit the shortcut you use to start your camera (e.g. FireCapture_ASI) and in the properties under target edit the existing startup line from 1024m to the amount you found. When starting FC via FireCapture.exe you need to adjust those values in line #73,74 of start.bat.

 

Torsten



#15 pastorgalactico

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 06:09 AM

Hello;
I don't understand where I have to edit that when you indicate objective.
Can you explain it to me with an image capture for example?
Greetings and thanks Torsten

J.

#16 pastorgalactico

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 07:42 AM

Hello;
I think I have got.
Attached images and you will tell me if it's okay like this.
Thank you.

 

J.Tapiolescapturada.jpg

 

 

capturada1.jpg



#17 pastorgalactico

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 07:45 AM

Hello;
At the moment I only have 2 Gb of Ram but I plan to expand to 4 GB soon as Ram memory cards are on the way.
Cheers;
J.Tapioles



#18 TorstenEdelmann

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 01:46 PM

Looks good so far but you can also set the first line of your marking to 1500 as well: SET HEAP=-Xms1500m.

This is the initial heap and should be the same as the second line (which is max heap).

 

For FC the 2GB more Ram are useless because as already explained you can't allocate more than around 1500MB on a 32bit system.

 

Torsten



#19 pastorgalactico

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 02:01 PM

Hello;
Thanks Torsten.
I will change what you say.
Greetings and thanks again.
J.Tapioles

#20 pastorgalactico

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 05:12 PM

Hello;
In the end I had to leave it at 1024Mb because the program crashes.
I have tried it and it still works fine.
When I add more RAM sl pc I will try to upload it to 1500Mb.
Attached image of venus today.
Greetings.

J.Tapioles

 

Venus-19042020-19-53-35-web.jpg


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#21 dlhaviland

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Posted 17 June 2020 - 09:28 AM

Hello Stephanh,

 

I originally had this problem when switching to USB3 cameras.

I would find missing frames and the FPS in the txt files was completely wrong.

 

I then modified the Heapsize setting to 8,192 MB and all was good from that point on.

 

 

attachicon.gifFirecapture Heapstack.png

 

 

 

Stewart

 

Stewart:

 

I know my input is two years hence, but thanks for this post.    I try to search before posting and I had this exact problem with my QHY camera that has a 3056x2024 chip and would bog down at full frame but "scream" at reduced ROI's.   Your post helped resolve the issue. 

 

Thank you Sir!

 

David 




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