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Stellariium and Nexstar connectivity

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#1 RickR90s

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 02:40 PM

I've been using Stellarium on my PC for years and recently thought about the possibility of using it to control my Nexstar 8. I think it's possible but don't know what cables/connections I need for my Windows PC (USB ports only).

 

With the cold winter approaching, it might be more fun to control the scope from inside my house. :)

 

Thanks,

 

RickR90s



#2 sandconp

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 03:30 PM

I use Stellarium on my laptop to control my 8 SE.  I use a mini USB cable from my laptop to the bottom of my hand control.  Along with the ASCOM drivers, that will work.  To work indoors in the winter,  I use VNC to remote to my PC outside using my WiFi network.


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#3 barbarosa

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 03:51 PM

The correct cable depends on the connector in the hand control, the newer ones are USB and the older serial connector requires a serial to USB adapter. In expensive versions using a Prolific chipset or clone often work fine. Usually a bit more expensive those with an FTDI chipset are almost always problem free.

 

The Nexstarsite has some good information on the various hookups. When I had an 8SE I used Nexremote (virtual HC) and Stellarium.

 

You can use a USB2 active cable to control the SE mount from a considerable distance.People have daisy chained these cables to 90' or more.

 

The Telescope plugin in Stellarium  is good with the SE. When you set up an SE remember to check equinox of date (JNow) rather than the default J2000. You do not need Stellarium Scope to make a connection.


Edited by barbarosa, 09 October 2019 - 01:41 PM.

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#4 RickR90s

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 08:41 AM

thank you very much for the information.



#5 SkipW

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Posted 10 October 2019 - 08:25 AM

If you need a USB-to-serial adapter...

 

I've had better luck with new FTDI-based adapters than older Prolific and older FTDI on Windows 10. Based on numerous anecdotal reports, the FTDI adapters seem more reliable in general. 

 

These are what I use now: https://www.amazon.c...B004ZMYTYC?th=1

 

One nice thing about the driver for this one is that it retains its port number even when using different USB ports, which not all of them do (or did, anyway). At $20, they're only a few bucks more than the el-cheapo knockoffs.

 

You'll also need a 9-pin serial to Celestron adapter.

 

Here's one found at random: https://www.amazon.c...e/dp/B0000665UZ

 

I can't vouch for that particular one, but they're fairly simple and cheap.

 

Good luck! Stellarium works great with the AVX. Do remember to check the Jnow button when setting up the telescope. There's no need for ASCOM if you select Celestron NexStar as the device.


Edited by SkipW, 10 October 2019 - 08:45 AM.



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