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Synscan vs Starseek Functionality

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#1 EDyer

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Posted 22 March 2019 - 11:35 PM

Hi, very new to this, and I have little doubt my question is painfully naive so I figured I'd just post in the Beginners Forum in the hopes it won't seem quite so bad, lol. So, swallowing my pride and asking my silly questions. :)

I recently bought an Orion 8" with an equatorial GoTo mount. I'd like to control it wirelessly, and see there are two options through Orion directly, the Synscan and Starseek. I gather the Synscan more or less just replaces the tethered handset, while the Starseek is more like an interface that allows the use of a more advanced controlling app with a planetarium etc. Where I'm getting confused is that I've read a few old posts where it appears people run the Starseek (or SkyFi) through the Synscan. So my questions

1) is my general understanding of the two approaches correct?
2) if so, what functionality does the Synscan provide that the Starseek does not? In other words, why would you need both?
3) regarding the Starseek, do you need to use the actual Starseek app, or could I use Starry Night, Stellarium, Sky Safari etc that I've read about? (Are these all the same basic category of software? I know, newb questions!)
3) on a related note, am I correct that the Starseek would also function as a GPS, so there's no need to add that as well?

Okay, that's it. Any (patient and gentle) help would be greatly appreciated!

#2 pkrallis

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 12:44 AM

You got Synscan with the scope. Chances are you will sooner or later switch to ASCOM/EQMOD software  and that opens up a world of possibilities for planetarium aps and other advanced functions. So hold off buying Starseek Since you are just getting started forget remote control until you have mastered your equipment.  That alone will give you enough headaches to keep you busy without the complications of remote control.  There are all sorts of reasons to be near your scope even if you have invested a couple of thousand in astrophotography gear. EQMOD and a game controller will give you all the remote control you need for starters until you are ready to invest big bucks in astrophotography which is really the only time remote control is a big plus rather than a nice to have gadget.



#3 EDyer

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 01:42 AM

Thanks, good advice. I realized now I was confusing the Synscan unit with the "Synscan wifi adapter"...makes sense now!


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