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ASILive - new EAA software

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#1 mclewis1

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 10:17 AM

What has been suggested and pushed for has now started to become a reality. ZWO is starting to show early versions of an EAA oriented app ... a live view software package. No details have formally been released but it's shown up on ZWO's facebook page. https://www.facebook...3&theater&ifg=1

 

Edit: got caught in a CN web problem and used the wrong subject title.


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#2 mclewis1

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 10:36 AM

So, a few of the questions about the software (aside from the obvious price/availability and EAA functionality) ...

 

Will it be available standalone (software only) or will it ever be offered as a bundle with the new ASIAir software/hardware? It shouldn't be a big deal to buy the ASIAir Pro and then add the software but a bundle would be nice.

Will ASIAir have live stacking features in the future (as has been discussed for a while) and be sold alongside ASILive? In other words will ZWO offer both capabilities or will ASILive become the live stacking capability in ASIAir Pro? It looks like from the Facebook discussion that yes there will be two products, one ASILive app (runs on a variety of platforms) and the live stacking within ASIAir Pro.

 

Integration with ASIAir services (platesolving, mount control, etc.)?

 

Will it support only ZWO cameras?

 - ASCOM camera support?

 

 

It will be nice if it's either bundled or works well with ASIAir as that will make a nice simple software/hardware package for folks that don't want to buy the pieces and setup their own headless compute platform.


Edited by mclewis1, 25 November 2019 - 10:37 AM.


#3 nic35

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 02:30 PM

Looks like it will run on a PC - 64 bit recommended.  In the future it will run on a MAC and Linux.  I suspect it will be like ASIcap - the free capture program distributed for ASI cameras.

 

You can get the 64 bit beta version here :

 

https://astronomy-im...alNPxGquWyutEc8

 

And the facebook page i have is https://www.facebook...84018241957224/

 

The link you have doesn't work for me, Mark.


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#4 Clouzot

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 02:40 PM

Some friends started testing it in parallel with Sharpcap.

The current version seems really limited (only three gain levels...and nothing in between; no easy way to balance whites...). The results appear noisier than, say, Sharpcap, with less details out of the box.


Edited by Clouzot, 25 November 2019 - 03:52 PM.


#5 alphatripleplus

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 03:24 PM

It would be nice if "they" (Sam) made it available free to any user of ZWO cameras - like Atik and Starlight Xpress proprietary EAA software is available at no charge, as are the variants of ToupSky - rather than sell it as an add on. Unless it turns out to be a significant improvement on SharpCap, it might be hard to persuade any Windows users to pay for it. Not sure I would pay up for it if I choose a ZWO camera for my next purchase. Hopefully, the plan is to make it available as freeware. Just my 2 cents. 



#6 GaryShaw

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 06:47 PM

I just downloaded and ran through the beta...looks like it was about a day's work by a junior coder and, so far, is as crude and featureless as ASICAP....IMHO.

Seeing this app, which was produced by a major corporation, enormously magnifies my appreciation of Sharpcap and for the incredible solo contribution that Robin Glover made to all of us who enjoy EAA. Perhaps posting privileges on this forum should discourage the use of the free version of Sharpcap. That's a 'rational' forum restriction that I could get behind.

Gary


Edited by GaryShaw, 25 November 2019 - 06:49 PM.

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#7 Alien Observatory

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 09:19 PM

I just downloaded and ran through the beta...looks like it was about a day's work by a junior coder and, so far, is as crude and featureless as ASICAP....IMHO.

Seeing this app, which was produced by a major corporation, enormously magnifies my appreciation of Sharpcap and for the incredible solo contribution that Robin Glover made to all of us who enjoy EAA. Perhaps posting privileges on this forum should discourage the use of the free version of Sharpcap. That's a 'rational' forum restriction that I could get behind.

Gary

 

Ohhh you just bashed my goto SW from ZWO (ASICAP) that I use almost exclusively as I like the simple modes of operation (on my Mac)....Ohh well I guess I have a simple mind for using  (simple) Astro SW without all the Bells and Whistles...SC and WIn10 the only way to go in the EAA universe....Pat Utah :) :) :)


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#8 Gvs

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 09:26 PM

SharpCap is simply the best software for EAA. If you use it, you should support Robin. Nothing else comes close.
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#9 Alien Observatory

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Posted 25 November 2019 - 09:44 PM

SharpCap is simply the best software for EAA. If you use it, you should support Robin. Nothing else comes close.

Win 10, SC Pro...Been there...Done that...sorry not into Almost AP on the Fly (AAPOF)...Pat Utah smile.gif smile.gif


Edited by Alien Observatory, 25 November 2019 - 09:46 PM.

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#10 mclewis1

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Posted 26 November 2019 - 08:38 PM

I don't think there's any question that SC is the class of the field, but it's certainly not perfect (being Windows only is probably it's biggest issue) and there are some really nice features in others like ToupSky, StarlightLive or ATIK's Infinity software.

 

So clearly ZWO is introducing a pretty basic "live" app. They at least plan that it will run on multiple platforms so that is something they'll have as a real benefit. The software will have to at least come up to a feature level where it's useful to a reasonable number of users to be sustainable ... otherwise it will remain as sort of a lost leader for ZWO ("sure we have an EAA app"). I'm sure it will take a some time to mature a bit, so we'll see lots of critical comments from both types of ZWO users (AP vs. EAA).

 

At the very least it's nice to see some more EAA oriented products.


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#11 Don Rudny

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Posted 26 November 2019 - 10:02 PM

SharpCap is simply the best software for EAA. If you use it, you should support Robin. Nothing else comes close.

Just a bit of history here.  Probably the “best software for EAA” ever developed is Starlight Live, originally called Lodestar Live.  It was developed by Paul Shears in the UK.  It was compatible natively for both Mac and Windows, but unfortunately would only work for Starlight Xpress cameras.  Many who used SX cams and SLL wanted to move to CMOS cams like ZWO.  Their experience with SharpCap was not the best and there was some regret for not having the ease of use of SLL.  

 

I agree with you that Robin should be supported for his excellent software, but as Mark wrote, it’s certainly not perfect and I wouldn’t call it the best.  Hopefully, ZWO or someone else will study the features and structure of SLL and develop something similar.  Having both Mac and Windows native is a must in my book.

 

Don


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#12 Howie1

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 12:32 AM

To be fair. I think all those other software / apps were also pretty limited in their first release versions. The ZWO camera's have come along in leaps and bounds and are now some of the most popular bang for buck around. I think that their ASIAIR and their software will come along just as fast. Well .... I'm hoping so! Been waiting for DSLR support and stacking with the ASIAIR for a while now. Cheap as chips too which is a bonus.

 

The fact that the ASIair is extremely quick Plug n Play setup, means that it's a neat (IMO) very simple device that handles a whole bunch of stuff which we have all (in the past) spent frustrating days and even months working on in order to get our setups running. Any noob to AP (or EAA) can strap the ASIAIR to their scope and get into "observing" very quickly instead of worrying about getting it all to interoperate.

 

But, original ASIAIR was for astrophotography and not EAA. Hence the new version is adding stacking.

 

The best vid I've found (15 minutes) on the original ASIAIR was this one below. Lots of waffle before he finally gets out with it around 7 minutes in. But don't fast forward, listen to what the guy says and watch for the whole 15 minutes. His words about being time poor and having to grab as many targets to shoot is something all EAA'ers should note. And he is an AP'er! At the end where he holds his tablet up at the camera is where his single Heart neb frame stretched with the autostretch is shown at its best. Outreach public and family/friends do not care about the (extreme IMO) quality which modern EAA'ers seem to think it should be. Imagine sitting on the couch in the living room with family and friends and (as the ASIAIR comes with hdmi output) seeing that single autostretched Heart Neb on your big TV. They'd think it magic.

 

https://www.youtube....eature=emb_logo


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#13 GaryShaw

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 11:09 AM

Ohhh you just bashed my goto SW from ZWO (ASICAP) that I use almost exclusively as I like the simple modes of operation (on my Mac)....Ohh well I guess I have a simple mind for using  (simple) Astro SW without all the Bells and Whistles...SC and WIn10 the only way to go in the EAA universe....Pat Utah smile.gif smile.gif smile.gif

Pat 

I’m going to give it a try based on your comment...I’ve opened it a few times and assumed the simplicity meant it didn’t have features. If you’re using it, it must have enough to get the job done.

thanks

Gary 


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#14 Astrojedi

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 01:12 PM

All SW takes a few years to mature but this is a step in the right direction.

 

What I would really like to see is ASILive on the ASIAir Pro. That to me would be ideal and really change the game - although it will make the Air more power hungry.


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#15 Alien Observatory

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 02:15 PM

Pat 

I’m going to give it a try based on your comment...I’ve opened it a few times and assumed the simplicity meant it didn’t have features. If you’re using it, it must have enough to get the job done.

thanks

Gary 

Gary, to be fair, I use ASICAP for live viewing (Moon and planets)..with an ASI553 on the way together with a Starzonia 0.4 reducer on the 9.25, I might be able to live view a few bright nebs...time will tell....

 

Pat Utah :)


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#16 Howie1

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 03:18 PM

All SW takes a few years to mature but this is a step in the right direction.

 

What I would really like to see is ASILive on the ASIAir Pro. That to me would be ideal and really change the game - although it will make the Air more power hungry.

Or ... tada ... replace the ASIAir SD card which is used to just store all the single frames for an AP'er to download and process the following day in PI or whatever. 

 

Replace with what I hear you say? ;)

 

Replace with a EyeFi wifi SD card ... and it will automatically send the frames to a remote PC/Laptop to either SharpCap Pro's Monitor mode, where it will look for frames from any camera and stack them .... or to AstroToaster which operates in the same way.

 

Does mean you have two devices though ...  tablet and pc to run the show. But for the moment (until stacking also becomes part of the ASIAir device) that would work pretty nicely. 



#17 organge

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 05:07 PM

Downloaded and installed. Looks pretty straightforward. At first glance it has everything you actually need. I pay for SharpCap but will try this out. Looks ok to me. Fore example, I had gread success with Altair Astro AltairCapture (same cameras as ZWO). Simple interface as well.

 

Happy to see another option for EAA.


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#18 OleCuss

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 06:07 PM

Downloaded and installed. Looks pretty straightforward. At first glance it has everything you actually need. I pay for SharpCap but will try this out. Looks ok to me. Fore example, I had gread success with Altair Astro AltairCapture (same cameras as ZWO). Simple interface as well.

 

Happy to see another option for EAA.

Please let us know how it works out.  Sometimes a rough interface and minimal settings/options can sit in front of a lot of capability.  It's possible that after a little development it might prove to allow simple/easy observing even if it might not be able to do all that SharpCap can do.

 

And who knows?  It might some day be a real powerhouse.  I've gotten the impression that ZWO can get some pretty good programmers working for them (whether contract or in-house expertise I've no idea).


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#19 mclewis1

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 06:09 PM

 ... I had great success with Altair Astro AltairCapture (same cameras as ZWO). ... 

Uh, that should be  "similar cameras as ZWO" (just not identical) ... but we know what you meant. wink.gif



#20 scopewizard

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 06:35 PM

I put together a Raspberry pi 4, with PHD2 and KStars. It worked but was not very stable. With lack of time to refine I decided when Astroberry V2.0 was released to go that route. Take a look, it works well so far. I have not done extensive testing. I need the weather which is not cooperating these days. Just get a PI 4 board and box with power plug, a 32g microSD all for under $100 and you are good to go.

 

https://indilib.org/...ilable-now.html

 

Denis



#21 organge

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 07:46 PM

Uh, that should be  "similar cameras as ZWO" (just not identical) ... but we know what you meant. wink.gif

 

Should be same chip and similar camera, sorry. Considering their SDK I guess they are of the same manufacturer.


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#22 Alien Observatory

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 09:15 PM

Please let us know how it works out.  Sometimes a rough interface and minimal settings/options can sit in front of a lot of capability.  It's possible that after a little development it might prove to allow simple/easy observing even if it might not be able to do all that SharpCap can do.

 

And who knows?  It might some day be a real powerhouse.  I've gotten the impression that ZWO can get some pretty good programmers working for them (whether contract or in-house expertise I've no idea).

ZWO has an excellent staff working for the company. I have had a few interchanges with them and a problem for them is trying to understand the various "English Dialects" and translating into Chinese and back to "English" (USA/Canada/UK/Ireland/Scotland/New Zealand/Australia and the sub dialects with in each country, I know for a fact Texans have their own dialect  smile.gif ... so I am inclined to be patient and let the SW develop at its own pace..and lord knows if you are writing SW for OSX it gets very complicated with its own set of rules...Pat Utah smile.gif


Edited by Alien Observatory, 27 November 2019 - 09:16 PM.

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#23 OleCuss

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 09:35 PM

Just an odd quirk which some might find amusing.  I do very little with Apple products but go back a long way with computers (but not as an expert).

 

Years ago I found I needed the capability that OS/2 offered and ran that for several years.  So even today when I see "OSX" I find it momentarily jarring with the idea that it might be the 10th version of OS/2.  I quickly remember the right context.

 

It actually looks like you can still get a version of the old OS/2:  https://www.arcanoae...-now-available/  I doubt any of us would benefit from getting it.

 

But more on point.  I'm glad to hear they have the staff to do the good work.  I do remember hearing that their drivers are very well-written and the ASIAir success also suggests the ability to put out good product.

 

I'm hoping to try out their AstroLive USB, err. . .  ASILive in the near future but the weather and circumstances mean it will almost certainly not be this weekend and maybe not for a while thereafter.

 

And yeah, I really do wonder whether they are starting with the AstroLive USB software:  http://astrolive.io/astroliveusb.html and extending/improving it.  I think I once heard that they weren't going to do that but the similarity of the name and the fact that AstroLive USB was once available for their camera owners has me wondering.


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#24 Alien Observatory

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 09:42 PM

Just an odd quirk which some might find amusing.  I do very little with Apple products but go back a long way with computers (but not as an expert).

 

Years ago I found I needed the capability that OS/2 offered and ran that for several years.  So even today when I see "OSX" I find it momentarily jarring with the idea that it might be the 10th version of OS/2.  I quickly remember the right context.

 

It actually looks like you can still get a version of the old OS/2:  https://www.arcanoae...-now-available/  I doubt any of us would benefit from getting it.

 

But more on point.  I'm glad to hear they have the staff to do the good work.  I do remember hearing that their drivers are very well-written and the ASIAir success also suggests the ability to put out good product.

 

I'm hoping to try out their AstroLive USB, err. . .  ASILive in the near future but the weather and circumstances mean it will almost certainly not be this weekend and maybe not for a while thereafter.

 

And yeah, I really do wonder whether they are starting with the AstroLive USB software:  http://astrolive.io/astroliveusb.html and extending/improving it.  I think I once heard that they weren't going to do that but the similarity of the name and the fact that AstroLive USB was once available for their camera owners has me wondering.

Might be a reason that SC, BY EOS, and many others are not available in OSX...Still waiting for a working version of 64 bit OSX from Stark Labs... lots of smart folks in those SW endeavors...OSX always stood for KISS, but that has been changing in the past few years...anyone remember the world class WIn 8 that is still on my wife's Lap Top...Pat Utah smile.gif smile.gif smile.gif

 

p.s. I tried, my OSX programmer Brother tried, Joe tried, ZWO tried to get the source code for USB live and give it a new life to no avail, so ZWO has undertaken their own path to develop Stacking SW and I am grateful that they are trying...


Edited by Alien Observatory, 27 November 2019 - 10:45 PM.

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#25 Alien Observatory

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 10:16 PM

Took a few minutes to use FB and Join ZWO FB. IT is ASICAP with Live Stacking....It is very good for me and many others.... waiting for OSX version... KISS :) ...Pat Utah :) :) :)




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