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NEW Explore Scientific EXOS-2 GT GoTo EQ Mount Firmware Update Cable

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#1 Jerry Hubbell

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Posted 09 November 2018 - 11:43 AM

We are pleased to announce the availability of our new firmware update cable for the EXOS-2 GT GoTo EQ mount hand controller. 

 

This cable available here  https://www.explores...os2gt-cable-set will allow you to update the firmware on the hand controller for the EXOS-2 GT GoTo EQ mount  that enables computer access and control via the Bresser ASCOM compatible driver. This driver is in development and is not yet feature complete. It will allow you to use third party ASCOM client applications such as Sequence Generator Pro, Cartes du Ciel, or Maxim DL to control your mount via the ASCOM interface. 

 

Please contact Explore Scientific Customer Support at +1 (866) 252-3811 for more information.


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#2 Rock22

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Posted 09 November 2018 - 12:37 PM

We are pleased to announce the availability of our new firmware update cable for the EXOS-2 GT GoTo EQ mount hand controller. 

 

This cable available here  https://www.explores...os2gt-cable-set will allow you to update the firmware on the hand controller for the EXOS-2 GT GoTo EQ mount  that enables computer access and control via the Bresser ASCOM compatible driver. This driver is in development and is not yet feature complete. It will allow you to use third party ASCOM client applications such as Sequence Generator Pro, Cartes du Ciel, or Maxim DL to control your mount via the ASCOM interface. 

 

Please contact Explore Scientific Customer Support at +1 (866) 252-3811 for more information.

Purchased!  THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!applause.gif band2.sml.gif banjodance.gif dalek12.gif Ihavenojoints.gif rockon.gif snoopy2.gif ubetcha.gif whee.gif


Edited by Rock22, 09 November 2018 - 12:38 PM.


#3 FlankerOneTwo

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Posted 09 November 2018 - 02:09 PM

That's great! Thanks very much, off to the website!



#4 Gustoresto

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Posted 09 November 2018 - 02:27 PM

Besides allowing a computer connection, does the "upgrade" correct glitches in the software that have troubled the JOC handset?    I want to keep using the handset.   Thx  Gus



#5 Acer

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Posted 09 November 2018 - 05:28 PM

Wow,

 

So now that makes my choice much harder.

 

The EXOS-2 GT Go-To, or the EXOS-2 PMC-Eight.  I was leaning towards the PMC-8, but it is $240 more expensive, and now with the GT having computer control, I don't know.

 

The PMC-8 still has the belt drive though.   I wish the PMC-8 came in white.



#6 nicoyenny

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Posted 10 November 2018 - 09:57 AM

Noted, will purchase asap.



#7 carlsonmjc

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Posted 10 November 2018 - 12:54 PM

Jerry, I am having no trouble with my Exos 2 mount. I have no interest in running by ASCOM, just the hand controller. Is there any advantage to purchasing this cable and just upgrading the firmware? Any new options or features?

Thanks for your work.

Mark C

#8 Jerry Hubbell

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Posted 10 November 2018 - 04:42 PM

I have not actually tested the firmware upgrade myself this was developed by Bresser Germany. If one want's to assume, you can figure that they would have corrected the issues that were hanging out there with the HC along with making the serial interface active. I would hope so. Customer Support may have the answer to that, but I haven't heard one way or the other.



#9 Jerry Hubbell

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Posted 10 November 2018 - 04:46 PM

Wow,

 

So now that makes my choice much harder.

 

The EXOS-2 GT Go-To, or the EXOS-2 PMC-Eight.  I was leaning towards the PMC-8, but it is $240 more expensive, and now with the GT having computer control, I don't know.

 

The PMC-8 still has the belt drive though.   I wish the PMC-8 came in white.

 

Nothing that a little white paint won't take care of!  I felt the same way when I bought my Skywatcher EQ6 Pro 10 years ago from a dealer in Canada because I wanted a white mount. I could have saved a few hundred dollars by purchasing the Orion Atlas mount and painting it white, LOL!



#10 ThatsMyCoffee

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Posted 11 November 2018 - 02:41 AM

I was excited until I realized it's PC only and does not ship to my country.   :(



#11 Rock22

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Posted 11 November 2018 - 10:43 AM

I was excited until I realized it's PC only and does not ship to my country.   frown.gif

You should double-check this. The software download seems to have a mac folder. The cable is necessary only to connect hand controller to computer using USB.



#12 CDallas32

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Posted 25 November 2018 - 12:29 PM

Where can I download the firmware upgrade?

#13 Gustoresto

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 09:01 AM

The upgrade download was emailed to me when I bought the $30 interface cable.    I guess U give yer address when U buy the cable.



#14 Rock22

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 04:32 PM

Where can I download the firmware upgrade?

http://explorescientific.com/exoszip

 

Once you click the link, the download is automatic.

 

You can find this in Step 2 of the instructions, which are found in the 'Manual" tab on the page for the cable: EXOS2-GT Cable Set

 

The upload was not that smooth for me using a Windows 10, 64-bit laptop.  There needs to be clarification in Step 6 of the instructions on which port settings to use in the Philips Flash Utility (PFU) and ASCOM Platform.  Originally, only Port 3 could be used (I tried the other 4) in the PFU.  Eventually, Port 4 was used.  In any case, here are my PFU settings:

 

EXOS2 GT HC firmware update Philips Screen Shot

Edited by Rock22, 26 November 2018 - 04:33 PM.


#15 Gustoresto

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 05:31 PM

Rock; U aren't the only one looking for "clarification"  on the instructions.  I've been in touch w the relevant service rep at ES and he was quite candid about his dissatisfaction w same, declaring it fit for tech minded PC users and he was working as best he could to come up w a step by step instruction guide for the non-tech PS owner like me.    I'll post here when I hear from him.    Also he and his engineer sources were a bit nebulous re the firmware issues in the Hbox that were [or not] addressed in this upgrade.   Might U have any insight on that?     I'm a visual observer and am not going to use a computer/tablet to run my scope. I want to know who it is that can answer the Q re Hbox firmware updates.      Like many others who own this mount, I have it working pretty well after some resets and getting the basics like adequate Batt power, leveling and alignment down , these items being common to all goto mounts.       I'm hoping they may have addressed stuff in the Hbox like WAY too few and too close alignment stars and the "point"  error it does sometimes among other glitches.     Thx  Gus



#16 CDallas32

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 05:36 PM

http://explorescientific.com/exoszip

Once you click the link, the download is automatic.

You can find this in Step 2 of the instructions, which are found in the 'Manual" tab on the page for the cable: EXOS2-GT Cable Set

The upload was not that smooth for me using a Windows 10, 64-bit laptop. There needs to be clarification in Step 6 of the instructions on which port settings to use in the Philips Flash Utility (PFU) and ASCOM Platform. Originally, only Port 3 could be used (I tried the other 4) in the PFU. Eventually, Port 4 was used. In any case, here are my PFU settings:


I was using mobile browser so that explains why I couldn't find the 'manual' tab. 🤣😫 did you notice upgraded performance and better alignment?

#17 Rock22

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 05:56 PM

Gus,

I haven’t had a chance to check. Maybe tonight if the weather holds. It has been cloudy and then we were on a trip over the holidays.

I’ll post when I find out. What I want is better alignment star selection and ASCOM capability for astrophotography using a new 80mm apo triplet.

#18 Rock22

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 06:00 PM

I was using mobile browser so that explains why I couldn't find the 'manual' tab. 🤣😫 did you notice upgraded performance and better alignment?


Yes, the manual can be found on desktop browsers, not on ES’ mobile site.

I never really had a problem with tracking before the firmware update. I’ll give it a go tonight and see if the alignment works better.

In the past, I used the advice from another post that said to use one star for this mount. That worked well for visual, but I want to do some astrophotography and will need better alignment.

#19 Gustoresto

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Posted 26 November 2018 - 06:53 PM

Rock; Because of the aforementioned nebulosity soryboutthat  re just what the update addresses in the Hbox firmware, I've kind got the impression from my ES guy that that was not the prime mover here but rather the focus was on the Ascom interface capability.   No def answer on that yet.      I also as stated would hope to see a MUCH better.bigger alignment star selection among other things.  My JMI Minimax has like 20!!!   alignment star choices and says to choose them like 60* apart!   If I get my first one aligned well, the 2nd one  (Altair then Rasselhague)   usually shows up close, but I'm not so sure it's much better than the one star align which is ODD.   I'm still working on that and haven't done it near enough 2 B sure.     By all means I hope all of U here will report any improvements/changes after U upgrade.    I think they call U a beta tester.     Test away, as I will if the rain ever stops here in SE PA.     Thx  Gus



#20 PatrickVt

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Posted 08 December 2018 - 01:17 PM

This firmware update is driving me crazy!  I did all the steps up to connecting the handbox to the laptop and mount...  then turn on mount...  then ensure all the correct data is in the Phillips Flash Utility that is indicated in the instructions...  I then click on "Read Device ID" and I get an error message saying to "reset the board and then click okay".   What the heck is that about?  What do they want me to reset?  

 

Patrick



#21 CDallas32

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Posted 08 December 2018 - 01:30 PM

This firmware update is driving me crazy! I did all the steps up to connecting the handbox to the laptop and mount... then turn on mount... then ensure all the correct data is in the Phillips Flash Utility that is indicated in the instructions... I then click on "Read Device ID" and I get an error message saying to "reset the board and then click okay". What the heck is that about? What do they want me to reset?

Patrick


I would contact Explorer Scientific. Their customer service is really good.
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#22 PatrickVt

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Posted 08 December 2018 - 02:15 PM

I figured it out on my own, so ignore my plea for help.  Thanks, CDallas32 for the advice to call Explore Scientific.  

 

I had read Rock22's advice, above, about COM4 but I didn't pay much attention to it because I have only one USB port and I know it is named COM1 (and I confirmed this in Device Manager).  COM1 wasn't working for the utility though.  Because it was asking me to "reset the board" I checked the box in the Utility labeled "Use DTR/RTS for reset and boot loader selection"...  still got the same message about "reset the board...".  I then decided to try to change the COM port...  changed it to COM4 as Rock22 advised and it worked.  So, Rock22 deserves a Thank You.  

 

Before this firmware update, I thought Sony had the absolute worst firmware update procedures...  I was wrong.  Bresser is, without a doubt, the absolute worst when it comes to user-friendly and fluid firmware updates.  I like the mount but this experience was frustrating enough to make me consider dumping this mount.  Realistically, however, the frustration and difficulties will be forgotten by tomorrow.  I'm not sure I would recommend the mount to anyone else though.  

 

Patrick



#23 xon432246

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Posted 08 December 2018 - 11:42 PM

Firmware upgrade was straight forward. Problem is I cannot connect to computer because when I plug the cable into the hand box from the computer it shuts the hand box off and nothing works. It did work once the first time after the upgrade. The mount connected and the hand box stayed lit. I was able to slew the mount from within the Cartes du Ceil software. But now...nothing. Actually it seems to short the hand box out when I plug just the cable with RJ connector(beige piece) into it. Maybe bad cable or connector?


Edited by xon432246, 08 December 2018 - 11:53 PM.


#24 PatrickVt

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Posted 09 December 2018 - 09:01 AM

Although I updated the firmware yesterday, after much trouble, I didn't have a chance to test the mount.  Maybe I'll find some time today to set it all up and give Stellarium control a go.  After I test it a few times, I'll report back here.  

 

To xon...  isn't the handbox supposed to be dark when it is connected to a computer just like when we did the firmware update?  When connected to a computer, you are not using the handbox, right?  I had intended to connect it to the computer in the same order as when doing the firmware update...  mount off...  connect to computer...  I'll probably open Stellarium at this point...  then turn on the mount.  And, if it still operates the same as when I updated the firmware, the handbox will be dark.  I could be wrong though since I haven't tested it at all since updating.  I checked the firmware version to make sure it updated but that is all.  

 

I'll report back here after getting a chance to test Stellarium control a few times. 

 

Patrick

 

PS...  xon... I do remember seeing something in the firmware update instructions about using another app for certain programs and I seem to remember seeing something about running CDC.  



#25 xon432246

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Posted 09 December 2018 - 10:49 AM

Thank you Patrick. What concerns me though is the screen on the hand box goes blank when just the cable and RS adapter are plugged in and not connected to the computer. It seems to be the RS adapter is the problem.

 

I will be watching for your results.




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