Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

APT not working.

astrophotography
  • Please log in to reply
12 replies to this topic

#1 ArandomPilot

ArandomPilot

    Explorer 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 52
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2020
  • Loc: Winter Park, Colorado

Posted 04 December 2020 - 02:37 AM

I am having a lot more issues than I should be having when it comes to using APT. Nothing ever seems to work, something always fails, for whatever reason, I was able to remote control my mount once during a test and then never again. I should probably mention this is going to a USB hub.

 

Equipment:

 

Celestron AVX (New Nexstar+ controller, no longer with cellphone jack port)

QHY Polemaster

SBIG ST-2000XM

Orion 50mm guide scope

ZWO ASI120MM Mini

Coma corrector (adds 1.1x mag)

Apertura 6" Newt Astrograph

 

Software I'm trying (and failing) to link with APT:

Stellarium

All Sky Plate Solver

PHD2 Guiding

ASCOM

(recently downloaded EQMOD, not sure if its necessary though).

 

The Problem comes when I try to link all the astronomy software using APT, I keep all applications running in the background after they are opened. 

 

Stellarium:

 

It just refuses to connect, I am currently running version 0.19, I was able to connect my Celestron mount to it once, and since I updated it, it no longer wants to. 

 

ASCOM:

 

Same thing as Stellarium, connected to the mount once, controlled it for a bit, disconnected, never worked again, I even updated the ASCOM software to the current one. This was using the USB hub as well.

 

PHD2:

 

This is the most confusing to me. It says everything is connected, my mount and camera. I'm trying to guide via the ST4 cable. I have it set up for Celestron drivers and so that it knows its using the ST4 cable. I have it auto select a star and then begin the calibration. West step 1... West Step 2... West Step 3... 4... 5... Guiding error, Cannot pulse guide or Star did not move enough during calibration. Then the software closes automatically and I have to start all over again.

 

All Sky Plate Solver:

 

Gave it an image of M42 (30s R) to plate solve, un-stretched raw file, after 10 minutes, it couldn't figure out where it was. Gave it an image of M45 in luminesce (60s), raw un-stretched file, same thing. 

 

At this point, I've watched tons of video tutorials on APT, and nothing seems to work. Am I doing something wrong here? I'm at a loss.

 

Anything helps.

 

 



#2 KenD

KenD

    Lift Off

  • *****
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 16 Apr 2014

Posted 04 December 2020 - 12:25 PM

Perhaps the following is helpful.

 

I have been using APT with a Celestron CGEM and PHD2 for several years with reasonable success.   But I have noticed that the order I connect to CGEM and PHD2 matters.   If I start APT with camera automatically connected, then connect to CGEM, and then to PhD2 often the mount does not respond to guide pulses and PhD2 calibration fails similar to what you describe.   I am  successful by starting PhD2 first, then starting APT.

 

I don't know if the connection order problem I experience is with APT, PhD2, or Ascom with Celestron driver.   I use recent releases of PhD2, APT but have not updated Ascom or Celestron driver for ~ 5 years.   Also, perhaps relevant, I am using a very old laptop (2008) running Windows Vista.

 

Ken D.



#3 Pete_xl

Pete_xl

    Apollo

  • -----
  • Posts: 1,181
  • Joined: 29 Jan 2015
  • Loc: Germany

Posted 05 December 2020 - 04:12 AM

Some years ago I had comparable problems when several programs communicated with the mount at the same time. I installed Eqmod and used the poth hub (plain old telescope hub) instead of the standard mount driver and the problems werde gone. In the actual Ascom poth was replaced by the „device hub“ and this also works perfectly with different software connected. My advice would be:

 

- install the actual ascom driver

- install Eqmod

- install Stellariumscope for Stellarium

- use the device hub in every program and in APT

Pete

 

P.S. Maybe use ASTAP as a platesolver in APT. I heard APT supports ASTAP in the actual version.



#4 3snows

3snows

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 317
  • Joined: 03 Jun 2012
  • Loc: Boston, MA

Posted 05 December 2020 - 07:18 AM

Pete is correct.  Having almost the same setup as you once, I needed to use the POTH hub to connect devices through.  The AVX can only connect to one device at a time without a hub.  The hub worked fine with APT.



#5 robbieg147

robbieg147

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 686
  • Joined: 23 Mar 2020
  • Loc: Kent, England

Posted 05 December 2020 - 08:58 AM

For plate solving to work in APT you need to have the correct focal length of your scope and pixel size of your camera entered. This can be found by clicking on "Tools" its at the bottom.

 

I always fire up CPWI first and align my mount before starting APT, until your mount is aligned third party software cannot move the mount anyway, virtually any software can control your AVX via CPWI. If you plan to just plate solve you can just do a quick align.


  • Juno18 likes this

#6 Wigleydh

Wigleydh

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 163
  • Joined: 26 Oct 2007

Posted 05 December 2020 - 10:01 AM

When I use APT I connect it to POTH then all the other programs that need to talk to the mount to that. I've plate solved several cameras on several different scope tubes -- like other mentioned you have to have the correct focal length and pixel size entered.



#7 MikeECha

MikeECha

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 269
  • Joined: 15 Sep 2018
  • Loc: Charlotte, NC

Posted 09 December 2020 - 07:35 AM

I am having a lot more issues than I should be having when it comes to using APT. Nothing ever seems to work, something always fails, for whatever reason, I was able to remote control my mount once during a test and then never again. I should probably mention this is going to a USB hub.

 

Equipment:

 

Celestron AVX (New Nexstar+ controller, no longer with cellphone jack port)

QHY Polemaster

SBIG ST-2000XM

Orion 50mm guide scope

ZWO ASI120MM Mini

Coma corrector (adds 1.1x mag)

Apertura 6" Newt Astrograph

 

Software I'm trying (and failing) to link with APT:

Stellarium

All Sky Plate Solver

PHD2 Guiding

ASCOM

(recently downloaded EQMOD, not sure if its necessary though).

 

The Problem comes when I try to link all the astronomy software using APT, I keep all applications running in the background after they are opened. 

 

Stellarium:

 

It just refuses to connect, I am currently running version 0.19, I was able to connect my Celestron mount to it once, and since I updated it, it no longer wants to. 

 

ASCOM:

 

Same thing as Stellarium, connected to the mount once, controlled it for a bit, disconnected, never worked again, I even updated the ASCOM software to the current one. This was using the USB hub as well.

 

PHD2:

 

This is the most confusing to me. It says everything is connected, my mount and camera. I'm trying to guide via the ST4 cable. I have it set up for Celestron drivers and so that it knows its using the ST4 cable. I have it auto select a star and then begin the calibration. West step 1... West Step 2... West Step 3... 4... 5... Guiding error, Cannot pulse guide or Star did not move enough during calibration. Then the software closes automatically and I have to start all over again.

 

All Sky Plate Solver:

 

Gave it an image of M42 (30s R) to plate solve, un-stretched raw file, after 10 minutes, it couldn't figure out where it was. Gave it an image of M45 in luminesce (60s), raw un-stretched file, same thing. 

 

At this point, I've watched tons of video tutorials on APT, and nothing seems to work. Am I doing something wrong here? I'm at a loss.

 

Anything helps.

Hello,

 

I think your problem is that all your apps are outdated.

 

EQMOD is actually the key. As an analogy, EQMOD is the router in your home network.

 

I would suggest you update to the latest versions

 

1- PHD2 to 2.69

2- Stellarium 20.3 . No need for Stellarium Scope anymore.

3- APT 3.87

4- ASCOM platform 6.5

5- Platesolver ASTAP for both near and blind solving in APT. It is very fast platesolver. 2-3 secs only. 

6- Use EQMOD (rev 200q latest?) to drive the mount with ASCOM pulse guiding.

 

In addition, IIRC APT works with PHD2 only with ASCOM pulse guiding. 

 

There are countless youtube videos to learn how to integrate all these and is very simple. Stellarium, PHD2 and APT work very nicely together. You just need the latest versions.



#8 ArandomPilot

ArandomPilot

    Explorer 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 52
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2020
  • Loc: Winter Park, Colorado

Posted 09 December 2020 - 10:04 PM

Hello,

 

I think your problem is that all your apps are outdated.

 

EQMOD is actually the key. As an analogy, EQMOD is the router in your home network.

 

I would suggest you update to the latest versions

 

1- PHD2 to 2.69

2- Stellarium 20.3 . No need for Stellarium Scope anymore.

3- APT 3.87

4- ASCOM platform 6.5

5- Platesolver ASTAP for both near and blind solving in APT. It is very fast platesolver. 2-3 secs only. 

6- Use EQMOD (rev 200q latest?) to drive the mount with ASCOM pulse guiding.

 

In addition, IIRC APT works with PHD2 only with ASCOM pulse guiding. 

 

There are countless youtube videos to learn how to integrate all these and is very simple. Stellarium, PHD2 and APT work very nicely together. You just need the latest versions.

All my software is now the latest versions, still the same set of issues, only now it effected my laptop, gave me the blue screen of death so I had to factory reset my laptop to get it functioning again. The newest issue is now with my polemaster as the software for it (latest version) no longer recognizes the camera. The next two weeks are cloudy anyways with heavy snowfall. Do you know anyway I can test the functionality of everything in my home?



#9 Juno18

Juno18

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 195
  • Joined: 07 Dec 2018
  • Loc: Long Beach, Mississippi, USA

Posted 09 December 2020 - 10:17 PM

Hate to hear about your issues with APT. Actually, I have had excellent success with APT and my AVX. I don't us a poth hub or EQMOD.

 

I did initially (several years ago) have connection issues when using a USB hub with the AVX. I got rid of the hub and connect the focus motor connected to my main camera (ASI 533). I have the AVX, guide camera, and ASI camera all connected to individual usb ports on my imaging laptop outside (3). 

 

Have you posted to the APT forum? Ivo and his team are very helpful.


Edited by Juno18, 09 December 2020 - 10:18 PM.


#10 MikeECha

MikeECha

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 269
  • Joined: 15 Sep 2018
  • Loc: Charlotte, NC

Posted 09 December 2020 - 11:30 PM

All my software is now the latest versions, still the same set of issues, only now it effected my laptop, gave me the blue screen of death so I had to factory reset my laptop to get it functioning again. The newest issue is now with my polemaster as the software for it (latest version) no longer recognizes the camera. The next two weeks are cloudy anyways with heavy snowfall. Do you know anyway I can test the functionality of everything in my home?

Well, I do not have Pole master and you wont be able to test guiding but, you need to get those apps talking to each other first and this would be a great time for you to do it. 

 

1- ASCOM Platform 6.5 installed. If EQMOD is the router, ASCOM platform is the modem before the router in the home network analogy.

2- ASCOM drivers for all devices. For your ASI120 with PHD2 I use the ASI camera native driver not the ASCOM but that is ok too.

3- EQMOD. If you are not familiar with the set up youtube Chris Shillito and watch his series of short videos and the use of the toolbox utility.

4- I do not know how but for imaging ideally you do not want the hand controller

 

I do not know how familiar with the astro apps your are but your comment about EQMOD tells me you might be getting started in the hobby so, now the learning curve starts.

 

I am assuming you will be using APT as your imaging software. So, youtube for how to setup APT with PHD2 ASCOM pulse guiding using EQMOD as driver, ASTAP plate solver, and Stellarium. There are a lot of details to learn and figure out here but for now just focus on getting the apps talking ASCOM to each other, then you move into learning how to use the apps.

 

I enjoy troubleshooting  so If you need help just IM me. I am not an expert, just an enthusiast.

 

Good luck.


Edited by MikeECha, 09 December 2020 - 11:30 PM.


#11 ArandomPilot

ArandomPilot

    Explorer 1

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 52
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2020
  • Loc: Winter Park, Colorado

Posted 16 December 2020 - 06:56 PM

Well, I do not have Pole master and you wont be able to test guiding but, you need to get those apps talking to each other first and this would be a great time for you to do it. 

 

1- ASCOM Platform 6.5 installed. If EQMOD is the router, ASCOM platform is the modem before the router in the home network analogy.

2- ASCOM drivers for all devices. For your ASI120 with PHD2 I use the ASI camera native driver not the ASCOM but that is ok too.

3- EQMOD. If you are not familiar with the set up youtube Chris Shillito and watch his series of short videos and the use of the toolbox utility.

4- I do not know how but for imaging ideally you do not want the hand controller

 

I do not know how familiar with the astro apps your are but your comment about EQMOD tells me you might be getting started in the hobby so, now the learning curve starts.

 

I am assuming you will be using APT as your imaging software. So, youtube for how to setup APT with PHD2 ASCOM pulse guiding using EQMOD as driver, ASTAP plate solver, and Stellarium. There are a lot of details to learn and figure out here but for now just focus on getting the apps talking ASCOM to each other, then you move into learning how to use the apps.

 

I enjoy troubleshooting  so If you need help just IM me. I am not an expert, just an enthusiast.

 

Good luck.

Newest problem arose, now nothing connects, I've watched lots of videos, and just sent a message to APT in their forum. Not entirly sure what to do at this point, if you have a quick fix, I could really use it soon, don't want to miss the Christmas star in a few days.

Thanks in advance and sorry.



#12 MikeECha

MikeECha

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 269
  • Joined: 15 Sep 2018
  • Loc: Charlotte, NC

Posted 16 December 2020 - 07:12 PM

Newest problem arose, now nothing connects, I've watched lots of videos, and just sent a message to APT in their forum. Not entirly sure what to do at this point, if you have a quick fix, I could really use it soon, don't want to miss the Christmas star in a few days.

Thanks in advance and sorry.

I sent you a IM



#13 robbieg147

robbieg147

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 686
  • Joined: 23 Mar 2020
  • Loc: Kent, England

Posted 16 December 2020 - 07:26 PM

Newest problem arose, now nothing connects, I've watched lots of videos, and just sent a message to APT in their forum. Not entirly sure what to do at this point, if you have a quick fix, I could really use it soon, don't want to miss the Christmas star in a few days.

Thanks in advance and sorry.

I just noticed you are not using CPWI? set up your mount with this then switch to APT but keep CPWI running in the background. You can download it from Celestron's website.

 

But you are saying nothing is connecting?




CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: astrophotography



Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics