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ZWO 224 and Celestron 6SE setup Trouble

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#1 Gamewarden

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 09:03 AM

Folks

 

I have a Clestron 6SE mount and OTA. I am trying to get an ZWO 224MC camera to work with no luck so far with Pro version updated Sharp Cap. I have also downloaded the newest camera drivers.

 

From the back of the OTA I have the .63 reducer - Visual back - Diagonal and then the camera.

 

In Sharp cap I can get an image on the screen with the all Sky lens connected to the camera using Sharp Cap.

 

My difficulty is when I replace the lens with the nose piece and install in diagonal I do not get a picture with the camera installed. I have tried different camera settings but to no avail, just a blank screen.

 

Thanks Mark



#2 GaryShaw

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 09:32 AM

Folks

 

I have a Clestron 6SE mount and OTA. I am trying to get an ZWO 224MC camera to work with no luck so far with Pro version updated Sharp Cap. I have also downloaded the newest camera drivers.

 

From the back of the OTA I have the .63 reducer - Visual back - Diagonal and then the camera.

 

In Sharp cap I can get an image on the screen with the all Sky lens connected to the camera using Sharp Cap.

 

My difficulty is when I replace the lens with the nose piece and install in diagonal I do not get a picture with the camera installed. I have tried different camera settings but to no avail, just a blank screen.

 

Thanks Mark

Mark

You might want to augment your post with info on the SC settings you’ve been using. A readable screen image or list of camera settings would help diagnose the problem. SC settings, along with the usual back focus distance issues and focus problems, can all be a potential source of the problem but more info would likely help. 
Gary


Edited by GaryShaw, 18 November 2019 - 09:33 AM.


#3 Gamewarden

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 12:32 PM

I have been trying a 1 second exposure with about 350 gain as others have suggested. Can I assume that if I get a good image with the included all sky lens plugged straight into my computer and Sharp Cap that the camera and drivers are OK???

 

When camera is on scope and pointing into backyard should I be able to see an image?? Sorry brand new at this.

 

Mark



#4 spacemunkee

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 12:46 PM

Likely a spacing/focus issue. Have you ran your focus travel fully from one end to the other and noticed any hint of anything onscreen along the way?

Here's a short thread on what you have with another longer thread linked within.

https://www.cloudyni...-celestron-6se/

Reducer/ spacing/ focus can be fun to figure out. Best of luck. Hope you figure out.

#5 GaryShaw

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 01:02 PM

Mark:

So it sounds like you're trying out the camera in daylight - is that right?

 

One second exposure at 350 gain is more than you need to get to see a star at night so you're pretty over exposed for daytime. If you are trying this in daylight, you should drop the gain to near 0 and then steadily decrease the exposure slider down from 1 second until you see a darkening on the Sharpcap screen which you can then try to focus - but you'll need a distant , non-moving, target to get to full focus with the scope and camera combination. Also be sure you have the Sharpcap settings for 'Color Space' set right for your camera (probably Mono 16 or Raw 16), that Binning is set to "1", Output Format to "PNG" in case you want to snap an image.

 

If you try the above exposure and focus adjustments with a distant target and still have a blank white screen, there's something else going on - possible with the amount of back focus distance. Someone who uses an SCT scope can easily coach you through that kind of issue.

Good luck - you'll get there..

Gary



#6 roelb

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 05:13 PM

Try to focus on the moon.
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#7 Ptarmigan

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 10:34 PM

Try to focus on the moon.

The Moon is a great place to focus on. One reason I do not mind the Moon. lol.gif


Edited by Ptarmigan, 18 November 2019 - 10:35 PM.


#8 Gamewarden

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Posted 19 November 2019 - 08:19 AM

Folks

 

I finally obtained an image during daylight thanks all for your suggestions. Will attempt the moon next. The problem was exp time and gain during daylight. I eventually shot at my barn light which is my new star.

 

Mark



#9 nic35

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 09:19 AM

Mark

 

Here's a useful thread.  Seethe very last entry   https://www.cloudyni...al#entry9581288

 

 

john


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#10 Gamewarden

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Posted 20 November 2019 - 09:58 AM

Thanks everybody for the recommendations. On to my next problem.



#11 Howie1

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 08:41 AM

Just a quick addendum to this thread in case people look it up as they too have problems .... the following works no matter if it is daytime or nighttime, and no matter what gain and exposure you have the camera set to.

 

If you are unsure if your camera is actually working / frozen ....

* First set auto gain and auto exposure!

Then ...

1. if the image is very dark and your adjustments don't seem to be making any difference, then shine a torch into the scope. The image should immediately go very bright/change noticeably in brightness if the camera is working.

2. If the image is very bright and your adjustments don't seem to be making any difference, then cap the scope. The image should immediately go very dark/change noticeably in brightness if the camera is working.

 

Second tip, it is heaps easier to find the focus point in the daytime and with auto gain and auto exposure set. That allows the camera to instantly react to the light it is finding through your scope (even when not in focus) and will show something - even if it shows shades of grey or shape changing shades of something on the preview window.

* Start by pointing your scope at something as far away as you can. It is no good finding focus on something 30 yards away as that focus point is totally different to the focus point of stars trillions of km away. You want to point at something a long way away!

* rack the focuser fully inwards or with an SCT wind the focus knob fully in the opposite direction to the infinity symbol found near the focus knob. This means you will find focus by winding the focus in just the one direction - outwards on a refractor or newtonian or towards infinity on an SCT.

* As you get near focus, those weird shadowy shapes displayed by the camera (set in auto gain auto exposure) will firm up into the image. The auto gain and exposure ensure you end up seeing a nice sharp and correctly exposed image on the screen. Much better than manually setting gain and exposure. 

 

Third tip, once you find the focus point, get a piece of plastic or card or tape measure and cut/measure where it came to focus. I'll leave it to you to figure out where to measure ... it obviously has to be from some fixed point on the drawtube assembly to some front face bit of the camera. Or if using a SCT count the number of turns of the focus knob to get from the focus position to fully at infinity (a marking for the infinity direction of winding will be near the knob on the back of the OTA). That measurement / template will be a good starting point for the first setup in the dark. But, it will NOT be in really sharp focus at that template / measurement position ... as in the day you focused on something far away but not at infinity! There will be a slight focus adjustment in the dark to bring stuff to sharp focus. Make a new template/again measure your focus point so next time you have an even more accurate starting focus point. 


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