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SkyPortal w/ S10 Android and no WiFi

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#1 MarMax

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 11:09 AM

Ok, I did the best I could to read through the forum for this information but there is a lot of it and it's very hard to follow relative to Android. I have a CPC 1100 GPS that lives in the garage which is about 200 feet from the house so there is no WiFi signal. I've considered installing a WiFi bridge to get it out to the garage but at this point I'd like to know if there is any way without WiFi to get the S10 to communicate with and run the mount with the SkyPortal app? Yes this may be the dumbest question in history, but please humor me.


Edited by MarMax, 28 October 2020 - 11:30 AM.


#2 sbradley07

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 12:24 PM

Pretty sure you need the Skyportal wifi device from Celestron.  It plugs into your mount and creates it's own wifi network.  You connect your droid to that network and control the mount with the app.  I don't own any of this, so make sure the device works with your particular telescope (but I'm pretty sure it will.)



#3 MarMax

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 01:24 PM

Pretty sure you need the Skyportal wifi device from Celestron.  It plugs into your mount and creates it's own wifi network.  You connect your droid to that network and control the mount with the app.  I don't own any of this, so make sure the device works with your particular telescope (but I'm pretty sure it will.)

Yes, definitely need the WiFi device that plugs into the mount. The question is if the mount (with SkyPortal WiFi device) will run from an S10 without there being any home based WiFi available. I've read that with iOS this is no problem but can't find any confirmation that it works with Android.

 

The SkyFi 3 sounds like it will work but I'd like to know about SkyPortal. In what I've read it seems unclear how the S10 can establish the network with SkyPortal. And any confirmation that SkyFi 3 also works with an S10 would be nice to know as well, as a backup plan.


Edited by MarMax, 28 October 2020 - 01:26 PM.


#4 sbradley07

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 01:33 PM

The question is if the mount (with SkyPortal WiFi device) will run from an S10 without there being any home based WiFi available. 

It will.  The whole point of the device is to allow you to control the mount with your phone/tablet over wifi where no other wifi network exists, like at a remote site.  The fact that a home wifi network may or may not exist nearby is immaterial to the configuration.  


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#5 MarMax

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Posted 28 October 2020 - 02:00 PM

Very good. So other than the direct access setting on the SkyPortal device are you aware of any specific S10 tips for connecting? It seems like the majority of users are iOS so there is not a lot of Android tips I have found.

 

Edited to add that a SkyPortal device is on order so I'll be able to bungle my way through to figuring out how it works. Having worked in engineering most of my life I've learned you can spend 10 hours researching and reading various information relative to your question or 10 minutes talking with someone that's done the same thing before. At 62 the more efficient route is now preferred.

 

From what I have read the SkyPortal device and the S10 running SkySafari will replace the handset. So might as well plug the SkyPortal into the handset plug. The StarSense camera will remain in Aux#1. Also, from what I have read the handset, Aux#1 and Aux#2 ports are wired in parallel so it really does not matter between the three.


Edited by MarMax, 29 October 2020 - 01:45 PM.


#6 MarMax

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Posted 01 November 2020 - 11:11 PM

Pretty much as I anticipated the first attempt to connect SkySafari with my CPC 1100 failed. Here is what I tried:

 

- remove handset and plug SkyPortal device into Handset plug (switch set to direct connect)

- turn on the scope and the top SkyPortal light is on and the middle is flashing

- turn on WiFi on my S10 and it recognizes "Celestron-D56"

- leave the setting as DHCP initially and check IP which is 1.2.3.5

- run SkySafari and set up the scope to "Celestron CPC" and WiFi as the connection and set IP to 1.2.3.5

- SkySafari also has the Port set to "4030" (which is not an available setting on the S10)

- attempt to connect to scope and receive a fail message

- change Celestron-D56 setting in the S10 to "static" with and IP of 1.2.3.6

- change the IP in SkySafari to 1.2.3.6 (Port is still 4030)

- attempt to connect to scope and receive a fail message

 

Any further advice or links to material to read would be appreciated.

 



#7 btschumy

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Posted 02 November 2020 - 07:41 AM

Your main problem is that you chose “Celestron CPC” as your scope type in SkySafari.  You need to choose “Celestron Wi-Fi”.  


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#8 MarMax

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Posted 02 November 2020 - 11:14 AM

Alrighty . . . now were are moving along. The "Celestron Wi-Fi" works, at least in a quickie 2 minute garage test. And yes, even a blind squirrel finds an acorn once in a while.

 

Edited to add that I used the S10's default WiFi setup which is DHCP for the above. Also, since the S10 recognizes the SkyPortal as "Celestron-D56" it must be a 3rd Gen device (Celestron-xxx). 

 

So one more question for now before I try this in the dark. Noting the following quoted from the MS website:

 

"With SkySafari using the "Celestron WiFi" connection method or SkyPortal, NexRemote or CPWI, you will first perform an alignment in the software/app itself.  For all other software, you must first perform a regular alignment with the physical hand control before attempting to control the scope with the external software/app."

 

Since I have StarSense, does the above still apply? That is, do I start up the mount and run it completely from SkySafari now (w/ SkyPortal replacing the HC)?

 

Also, I've read that with a CPC 1100 with StarSense the only alignment options from SkySafari are manual and auto, is this correct? I like to do a solar system alignment about half the time.


Edited by MarMax, 02 November 2020 - 01:51 PM.


#9 Michael_Swanson

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Posted 02 November 2020 - 10:29 PM

Alrighty . . . now were are moving along. The "Celestron Wi-Fi" works, at least in a quickie 2 minute garage test. And yes, even a blind squirrel finds an acorn once in a while.

 

Edited to add that I used the S10's default WiFi setup which is DHCP for the above. Also, since the S10 recognizes the SkyPortal as "Celestron-D56" it must be a 3rd Gen device (Celestron-xxx). 

 

So one more question for now before I try this in the dark. Noting the following quoted from the MS website:

 

"With SkySafari using the "Celestron WiFi" connection method or SkyPortal, NexRemote or CPWI, you will first perform an alignment in the software/app itself.  For all other software, you must first perform a regular alignment with the physical hand control before attempting to control the scope with the external software/app."

 

Since I have StarSense, does the above still apply? That is, do I start up the mount and run it completely from SkySafari now (w/ SkyPortal replacing the HC)?

 

Also, I've read that with a CPC 1100 with StarSense the only alignment options from SkySafari are manual and auto, is this correct? I like to do a solar system alignment about half the time.

Yes, if you want to use the SkyPortal/SkySafari app connected via the Celestron SkyPortal WiFi module, your phone will replace the hand control.  In the SkyPortal app, connect to the scope, go into the settings and select "Align Using StarSense Auto".

 

If you don't want to perform a StarSense-aided alignment, after connecting to the scope in the SkyPortal app, go into settings and deselect the option "Align Using StarSense Auto".  You can then manually align on any object in the sky.

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
https://www.NexStarSite.com



#10 MarMax

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Posted 02 November 2020 - 11:09 PM

Thank you Mike. I was able to get things to work tonight but it took a few tries. I have not delved into the SkySafari app very far. The choices I had were "connect and align" or "connect". I had to pick "connect and align" for it to go into a StarSense auto alignment (my preferred method). If I picked "connect" it went into a manual (non StarSense) alignment mode.

 

It did not achieve a successful StarSense alignment on the first try, even though things were going well. My phone screen timeout was set to 30 seconds so it timed out just before finishing and when I returned to the SkySafari app it somehow lost where it was. I guess the phone timeout needs to be set long or perhaps there is a setting in SkySafari that makes the phone run continuously if the app is running (the pro camera apps are like this).

 

I increased the timeout time and re-ran the StarSense alignment and it worked. At the conclusion of the alignment, SkySafari gave me a message that I need to calibrate the camera, which I ignored since I know the camera is calibrated. I ran the mount with the phone for about an hour and it worked just fine. Go-to's were pretty good and it works fairly easily.

 

I'll have to re-read the appropriate sections of your book and also spend more time looking at the (rather limited) documentation on SkySafari.



#11 Michael_Swanson

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Posted 04 November 2020 - 12:04 AM

 

If you don't want to perform a StarSense-aided alignment, after connecting to the scope in the SkyPortal app, go into settings and deselect the option "Align Using StarSense Auto".  You can then manually align on any object in the sky.

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
https://www.NexStarSite.com

I just realized that wouldn't work.  Instead, unplug the StarSense camera from the mount before "connecting" in SkyPortal/SkySafari.  Turn off the SkyAlign option in the telescope settings in SkyPortal/SkySafari and you can then manually select the object you want to use as an alignment reference (Jupiter, for example).

 

Best regards,
Mike Swanson
https://www.NexStarSite.com




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