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Evolution WiFi issues. NEW

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#1 Ski-Patroller

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Posted 08 September 2019 - 03:25 PM

I have One of the early Evolution 8 mounts, and I have not had problems with Wi-Fi at all as long as I stayed close to the telescope. Even in my house where there are several Wi-Fi signals from other routers it always connected and worked.  

 

Last night I was out in an area with no other Wi-Fi, and I could not get my mount   to connect to my iPhone, or my iPad initially. After multiple tries it did connect with the iPad, and eventually also with the iPhone but it took many tries.  The message was something to the effect that it detected the Evo but could not connect.   Once it was connected it worked fine. Any thoughts about why it would fail to connect when there is no obvious  interference?   I’ve only had this telescope about four months, and I’ve only used it a few times but it’s always worked pretty well until last night.  

 

 Just a clarification, I wasn’t trying to connect to the iPad and iPhone at the same time. I just found that my iPad was not as responsive as the iPhone in sky safari so I wanted to use my iPhone instead. I have a suspicion the compass in my iPad is bad. 

 

When I got back to my cabin and tried it inside again and it worked fine connected every time. 


Edited by Ski-Patroller, 08 September 2019 - 03:28 PM.


#2 skaiser

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Posted 08 September 2019 - 08:35 PM

This seems to be a quirk that affects the WiFi connections of a lot of celestron systems.

i have a cgx system with one of the newest generation WiFi modules.

last night while trying to use the WiFi connection via iPad and CPWI, I couldn’t hold a solid connection for several hours of trying.

then it connected and no more issues.

playing with WiFi connection this morning, no problems at all...

it’s hard to figure why this is so touchy.

i also have a 2018 vintage evolution system that can be just as quirky..

so have patience. 



#3 Noah4x4

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Posted 09 September 2019 - 02:56 AM

In addition to my astronomy hobby,  I professionally use WiFi to stream sports venue video data for Internet broadcast from a CCTV camera to a laptop often circa 150 metres distant. This is clearly impossible with domestic WiFi, but  from this experience I can offer some tips that will assist with domestic WiFi and astronomy...

 

1. The 2.4Ghz Channel used by Celestron is stronger than the 5Ghz channel. 

2. However, the 2.4Ghz channel tends to be cluttered in urban locations and interference is inevitable.

     There are also known interference problems where USB3 devices are in close proximity to WiFi devices. 

 

3. To succeed over extreme distances, I use a pair of KuWfi point to point devices and 2.4Ghz.

4.  These have a quoted range of 2Km, but for video, I find 200 metres is about the limit. But.....

 

5.  A human standing in the line of sight is sometimes suffice to block the signal (hence I elevate them).

6.  Metal objects (like a parked car) passing between can scatter the signal. Line of sight is critical with directional aerials. 

7.  I have concluded that if the line of sight between your telescope and tablet device is broken you might similarly suffer. If you walk away the connection will inevitably drop. But if you simply turn around with device in hand your body might diminish the signal strength!

 

8.  I get best results from my telescope where my devices are connected in Access Point mode to a Netgear EX8000 wireless extender with a clear line of sight. Connecting to my more distant router is more flaky. Connecting in Direct mode to tablet is often flaky. This is despite upgrading from first generation Evolution WiFi, through secind generation SkyPortal dongle to the latest SkyPortal external WiFi accessory technology.

 

9.  If using Windows Remote Desktop disable RemoteFX compression else you are restricted to 10Mbps.

 

10 Beware of 'unlimited' data contracts. For example, in the UK, Vodafone Life limits you to 2 Mbps, Vodafone Unlimited 10 Mbps; you need Vodafone Max to carry heavy data loads. 

 

11. Whilst tip 10 relates to 4G, your domestic WiFi is similar. If all your family is streaming Netflix to their personal devices you are competing for domestic bandwidth. That isn't relevant if your tablet device is in Direct connect mode to your telescope except that WiFi Clutter is an inevitable greater risk.

 

12.  Using a tablet can be fraught with perils. Battery savers and notifications can bust your connection.

 

13. In summary, for my telescope I now connect scope to a mini computer and from that to a second. laptop (indoors) using a local WAN that I have established and remotely control it using Windows Remote Desktop running CPWI software. It's a far more stable route than tablet/SkySafari. I control scope, camera, Starsense wholly remotely and am succeeding with 4K UHD Astrophotography after disabling RemoteFX compression. For details of how to do this, there is plenty of guidance in the EAA section.

 

The bottom line is that if you use a tablet/Celestron WiFi you must expect some issues especially with older devices.  It is now dated technology and the aerial devices in use are generally poor. For example, an I-Phone 5C isn't as good as an I-Phone XS. Domestic WiFi whether direct or access point  inevitably suffers from 'lost packets'. The Netgear EX8000 wireless extender that I use helps as it uses powerful MESH technology and replicates what I do with the KuWfi devices at sports grounds. Best results will come from newer devices (phones/tablets). However, nothing wireless will ever be as good/reliable as cat6 cable! Note too that USB and HDMI are limited to extreme short distances. WiFi can be better than those with point to point technologies. 


Edited by Noah4x4, 09 September 2019 - 03:04 AM.

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#4 Ski-Patroller

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Posted 09 September 2019 - 01:04 PM

In addition to my astronomy hobby,  I professionally use WiFi to stream sports venue video data for Internet broadcast from a CCTV camera to a laptop often circa 150 metres distant. This is clearly impossible with domestic WiFi, but  from this experience I can offer some tips that will assist with domestic WiFi and astronomy...

 

1. The 2.4Ghz Channel used by Celestron is stronger than the 5Ghz channel. 

2. However, the 2.4Ghz channel tends to be cluttered in urban locations and interference is inevitable.

     There are also known interference problems where USB3 devices are in close proximity to WiFi devices. 

 

3. To succeed over extreme distances, I use a pair of KuWfi point to point devices and 2.4Ghz.

4.  These have a quoted range of 2Km, but for video, I find 200 metres is about the limit. But.....

 

5.  A human standing in the line of sight is sometimes suffice to block the signal (hence I elevate them).

6.  Metal objects (like a parked car) passing between can scatter the signal. Line of sight is critical with directional aerials. 

7.  I have concluded that if the line of sight between your telescope and tablet device is broken you might similarly suffer. If you walk away the connection will inevitably drop. But if you simply turn around with device in hand your body might diminish the signal strength!

 

8.  I get best results from my telescope where my devices are connected in Access Point mode to a Netgear EX8000 wireless extender with a clear line of sight. Connecting to my more distant router is more flaky. Connecting in Direct mode to tablet is often flaky. This is despite upgrading from first generation Evolution WiFi, through secind generation SkyPortal dongle to the latest SkyPortal external WiFi accessory technology.

 

9.  If using Windows Remote Desktop disable RemoteFX compression else you are restricted to 10Mbps.

 

10 Beware of 'unlimited' data contracts. For example, in the UK, Vodafone Life limits you to 2 Mbps, Vodafone Unlimited 10 Mbps; you need Vodafone Max to carry heavy data loads. 

 

11. Whilst tip 10 relates to 4G, your domestic WiFi is similar. If all your family is streaming Netflix to their personal devices you are competing for domestic bandwidth. That isn't relevant if your tablet device is in Direct connect mode to your telescope except that WiFi Clutter is an inevitable greater risk.

 

12.  Using a tablet can be fraught with perils. Battery savers and notifications can bust your connection.

 

13. In summary, for my telescope I now connect scope to a mini computer and from that to a second. laptop (indoors) using a local WAN that I have established and remotely control it using Windows Remote Desktop running CPWI software. It's a far more stable route than tablet/SkySafari. I control scope, camera, Starsense wholly remotely and am succeeding with 4K UHD Astrophotography after disabling RemoteFX compression. For details of how to do this, there is plenty of guidance in the EAA section.

 

The bottom line is that if you use a tablet/Celestron WiFi you must expect some issues especially with older devices.  It is now dated technology and the aerial devices in use are generally poor. For example, an I-Phone 5C isn't as good as an I-Phone XS. Domestic WiFi whether direct or access point  inevitably suffers from 'lost packets'. The Netgear EX8000 wireless extender that I use helps as it uses powerful MESH technology and replicates what I do with the KuWfi devices at sports grounds. Best results will come from newer devices (phones/tablets). However, nothing wireless will ever be as good/reliable as cat6 cable! Note too that USB and HDMI are limited to extreme short distances. WiFi can be better than those with point to point technologies. 

Just to be clear the iPad is a brand new 6th Generation 9.7" screen and the iPhone is an X.  There were no other WiFi networks available on my Phone or iPad, and I was within 2 feet of the mount.

 

At my home or ski cabin, I usually can detect 4 to 6 WiFi networks, and the Mount will connect from 10+ feet away.  That is why I'm so puzzled by the behavior.    I kept looking to see if there was some setting or option I was missing, but no joy.   My 2007 Suburban was only about 10 ft away, but it was off and dark.  I don't see why that would have an impact on the WiFi.   The next day at my cabin it worked fine. 



#5 jeffy1021

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Posted 17 September 2019 - 05:37 PM

I just took my new to me Evolution 8 out last night for the first time.  I used to have a Sky-Watcher AZ GTI but wanted a mount that could handle more aperture.  The AZ GTI did not exhibit any wifi connectivity issues.  I do think the Celestron Skyportal app looks nicer than the Synscan Pro app used to control the AZ GTI.  Skyportal would just be unresponsive at times and I found myself trying to "move the sky" first to make sure the app was awake/connected before trying any new operation.  I also left the hand controller connected so I can use the directional controls as that is easier to use while looking through the eyepiece.

 

I hadn't considered using AP mode.  For offsite use I could re-purpose an old router but that would mean I would have to power it, though I am sure I could rig something up using the USB port on the evolution.  The next free night I'll simply try connecting the evo to my home wifi network to see if responsiveness improves.  Thanks for the tip!

 

The tracking, alignment, and gotos are comparable to the AZ GTI which is good at least.


Edited by jeffy1021, 17 September 2019 - 06:50 PM.


#6 whizbang

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 07:13 PM

I have an older EVO with the first generation trash WiFi card.

 

I now connect via Bluetooth adapter.  100% reliable, but always takes two attempts to connect.



#7 jeffy1021

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 07:30 PM

I have an older EVO with the first generation trash WiFi card.

 

I now connect via Bluetooth adapter.  100% reliable, but always takes two attempts to connect.

Oh interesting, do you have a link to how to get BT setup?  I do have the newer EVO with the mini-usb HC.



#8 Michael_Swanson

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Posted 18 September 2019 - 09:39 PM

Oh interesting, do you have a link to how to get BT setup?  I do have the newer EVO with the mini-usb HC.

There are some "how to" posts here on Cloudy Nights but I've lost track of the link.  I also have general info in the "wireless connections" section on this page of my website:

https://www.nexstars...m/PCControl.htm

 

That said, all of the Bluetooth adapters require the older RS-232 (RJ-22 telephone style jack) hand control as there are no Bluetooth to USB adapters that work with the USB hand controls.  

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide"
Author of "NexStar Observer List"
https://www.nexstarsite.com



#9 jeffy1021

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 06:11 PM

There are some "how to" posts here on Cloudy Nights but I've lost track of the link.  I also have general info in the "wireless connections" section on this page of my website:

https://www.nexstars...m/PCControl.htm

 

That said, all of the Bluetooth adapters require the older RS-232 (RJ-22 telephone style jack) hand control as there are no Bluetooth to USB adapters that work with the USB hand controls.  

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide II"
Author of "The NexStar Users Guide"
Author of "NexStar Observer List"
https://www.nexstarsite.com

Thanks Mike.  I've been to your site already and there is a wealth of information there.  It certainly makes it easy for new people to get up to speed quickly, greatly appreciated!

 

I took the scope out last night and connected it along with my old smartphone to wifi on a spare travel router.  The connection definitely seemed more reliable.  There were a few times where Skyportal would freeze for a few seconds but would promptly reconnect without issue.  It was definitely more usable than when I connected to directly to the built in Celestron-xx network a few nights ago.  I'll try it out again a few more times and if it continues to work reliably, I will make a custom USB cable to power the travel router since it takes 3.3V (vs the standard 5V provided by USB).  That way I can use the evo's USB port to power it.  That being said, I will always take the HC with me as backup!




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