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Asiair pro users, how has it impacted your imaging?

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43 replies to this topic

#26 T~Stew

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Posted 28 February 2021 - 10:18 AM

Has it streamlined your sessions? Make you more apt to go and set up? Has it hindered you? Has it allowed you more data collection?

I suppose the answer would greatly depend on where the user is coming from... I mean to some it may be way more streamlined than what they were using, more portable, etc.

For me coming from just a tracker, its a lot more equipment and a lot longer to setup and PA, calibrate guiding, etc. Fighting a bit with weak wifi and lost connection, bump the data cable to the camera and have to reconnect a reselect it in the menu as new equipment, etc. So quickness definitely favored just visual polar scope alignment, no guiding, and targets I could easily frame by sight (M42, M31, Horsehead, etc). 

For me it allowed me to add more accurate polar alignment, guiding, plate solving, annotation of the objects on the screen from image for fine tuning framing, etc. All while using my old android phone. I've never used PHD2 or any guiding/solving apps or anything on windows. ASIair got me all these things with minimal fuss, really transformed my imaging, even just using a tracker. I am super happy with the modest investment and I know I can still transfer this all to a different mount if I upgrade. But honestly it made this tracker so much easier to find objects even without goto, and guiding allowing my to get much better images, I don't think I'll plan on upgrading for quite a while. Totally pleased and so very worth it for my needs!

 

One issue that seems to be common is poor wifi signal and I have experienced this. I now setup closer to my router but it limits my views. I'd like to move it further from the house so looking into wifi extender options. But a question, does the extender go on your home network or the ASIair? As I understand it (maybe incorrect?) ASI connects to your home network with one connection, then forms another connection between your mobile device and it. Am I going to need extenders for both? 


Edited by T~Stew, 28 February 2021 - 10:34 AM.


#27 dhayes68

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Posted 28 February 2021 - 11:50 AM

Got mine about a week ago but haven't had a chance to use it yet but I'd been using a Dell laptop that has an issue where the battery charge drops to 0% when its cold (Dell's solution: Don't use it where it's cold confused1.gif) So I gotta bring a long extra power beyond what I need for my scope and camera. I'm hoping that switching to the ASIAir Pro and an iPad it will greatly simplify my rig (I live in a city so I gotta manually haul everything in a cart to rooftops and parks) to a much more compact setup that's easier to manage.



#28 GoFish

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Posted 28 February 2021 - 12:44 PM

I ordered AAP yesterday to replace my laptop. But only after strongly considering a NUC running Win10. For me, it came down to these considerations:

  • iPad is my preferred interface, and I came to believe the dedicated AAP app is superior to RDP and the other options available for a Win10 mini PC with my iPad. 
  • I already have a spare wireless router/extender ready to go if the WiFi range of the AAP is too limiting. 
  • AAP should be configured and ready to go out of the box. It will support all of my cameras and mounts. 
  • The total cost was under $300. I would be willing to pay that for a quick, easy EAA solution and later pony up a similar amount again for a mini PC if the AAP is too limiting for traditional AP.

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#29 wxcloud

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Posted 28 February 2021 - 01:47 PM

Mine was supposed to be delivered yesterday but instead UPS emailed an exception first thing yesterday morning just half a day of them telling me to expect the package :rolleyes: oh well, we did get about 10" of snow a couple days ago. Figures it's actually supposed to be clear (with loads of humidity) and nearly full moon and actually off! Ack!
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#30 By-tor

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Posted 28 February 2021 - 11:13 PM

I couldn't get PHD2 on my laptop to work with my setup worth a crap so I tried the ASIAIR Pro and it has been working great ever since.   I don't have the best mount around, but after a tear down, re-lube and adjustments it seems to be much better than it was stock.  Plus is does add wireless connectivity and by adding the wifi extender that's mounted on a tripod leg and connecting it to my home network I now control everything through a small tablet from inside my house where it's nice and warm.  

 

DSCF3803.JPG

 

DSCF3805.JPG

 

Taken with the setup above.  They are not great, but I like them and I'm still learning.

 

Horsehead & Flame Nebula 180 & 120.JPG

 

Orion Nebula M42 & Running Man NGC1977.JPG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Edited by By-tor, 01 March 2021 - 07:06 AM.

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#31 wxcloud

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Posted 01 March 2021 - 03:04 PM

UPS just dropped mine off and potentially have clear skies tonight! Already have the asi app on my phone, just hope it's supported. Unfortunately not a whole lot available for shorter scopes, but debating if I want to set the thing up with the rasa (that I usually end up breaking down after a session) or the ZenithStar 61 (which I might need to switch back to an oag set up to make room for the aisair).
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#32 wxcloud

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Posted 01 March 2021 - 10:27 PM

Welp, so far a fail. First thing right off the bat was a firmware update while I was sitting outside to get it set up. Really surprised it didn't fail. Rather quick.

Second issue? Wouldn't take my latitude and longitude for some reason, evidently it didn't like the coordinates as displayed by google. Gave me like 50.80777 something random and the asi wanted xxx".xx".xx" format? So did the first number and ?? The rest.

Third issue? Hey, this I'd familiar, wouldn't connect to the mount! I think there is a thread somewhere on CN I'm going to need to check out. Tried different baud rates. Nope refused to connect. Getting really frustrated at this point. The asiair kept bugging me to do a one star alignment. Never did this with ekos. Will need to read into things more. Used to just pointing as close as possible and doing a plate solve.

So trying a couple times, getting nowhere (hey, at least the firmware is up to date!) It's sitting on my table for later.

Running plan B right now which is the laptop I was trying to get away from. At least it's kind of working.

#33 wxcloud

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Posted 02 March 2021 - 10:46 PM

I did get the asiair to connect to the mount! I picked skywatcher synscan mount last night, wrong choice. Eqmod mount was what I should have picked. Did a quick indoor set up for some testing and getting things a little more setup.

So far things are just a wee bit awkward but seems easier then trying to control astroberry from my phone's browser so far.

Didn't find a shut down option in the asiair app, just backed out of it to close. Not sure if it was right? Then powered down the box. Definitely need to backup the asiair OS. Not sure how to do this on Linux?

#34 davidparks

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Posted 02 March 2021 - 11:08 PM

Didn't find a shut down option in the asiair app, just backed out of it to close.

On the WiFi Settings Page, upper right hand corner you will find the power down button.  It will shut down the hardware (you still have to turn the switch off after), and close the App.

 

You can see it in the picture on page 12 of the manual  https://astronomy-im...User_Manual.pdf


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#35 wxcloud

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 12:20 AM

Thanks!

Welp, I completely missed that section lol. Hope I didn't wreck this thing already. Skimmed the manual a couple times, didn't see the power off while skimming. Nor was it mentioned in a few vids I watched

#36 Jarno

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 03:35 PM

@Vanguard. 
Thank you. The WiFi Extender I’m  using is the TP-Link AC750 Travel Router. It sure helped extended the below mediocre WiFi range 

of the ASIAIR. Allowed me to sit inside a warmer garage during a few cold nights. 

In hindsight putting the wifi antenna inside a metal housing probably wasn't the best design choice. I saw that some people have modded their Raspberry Pi to give it an external antenna but that involves some extremely fiddly soldering. I'd probably end up with fried Pi... However I wonder if anyone ever 3D-printed a new housing and how much this improved signal strength.

 

Jarno



#37 By-tor

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 03:48 PM

I wasn't getting great range with my ASIAIR Pro so I added a TP-Link WiFi extender plugged into a power strip mounted on a tripod leg and plugged (green cable) into the ASIAIR RJ45 Ethernet Port and connected that to my home network and get great range with my scope in the yard and me in the house.

 

DSCF3804.JPG



#38 Jeff Morgan

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 09:21 PM

 I saw that some people have modded their Raspberry Pi to give it an external antenna but that involves some extremely fiddly soldering. I'd probably end up with fried Pi... However I wonder if anyone ever 3D-printed a new housing and how much this improved signal strength.

 

 

I saw that also. The guy paid a cell phone repair shop $35 to do the soldering, plus he paid $4 for the antenna Considering one can get travel router (from the ZWO site no less) for $40, I think I would just go that route.

 

The very same router can also be had for $40 on Amazon Prime ...



#39 wxcloud

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 11:16 PM

Well, finally getting first lol I mean light with this device tonight. So far I don't know what to think. Took me an hour to get focus for some reason. Doing manual with the ZenithStar 61 and it's bahtinov mask. That was the major challenge tonight. Kind of set the stage. Finally got that close. Next step guiding. Went a little quicker but the oag set up seems pretty dim, I might have the guide prism a little too far up. Up to like 4 second exposures.

Navigation around, probably take some getting used to. So far sat outside with it part of the night once I finally got a short sequence started. Since we ended up tripping over the pavers the tripod is mounted on to keep from sinking into the ground, and focus started to slip, opted to just do more testing since wifi connection is weak and won't work inside, I turned the screen off on my phone, put it in my pocket and came inside for a snack to see if the sequence will continue.

So, still not sure on this thing. Not sure the ZenithStar 61 is going to be a viable rig. Think auto focus is probably going to be needed. Not sure on the oag route yet. Definitely fumbling my way around the system.

#40 Anhydrite

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 11:36 PM

Second issue? Wouldn't take my latitude and longitude for some reason, evidently it didn't like the coordinates as displayed by google. Gave me like 50.80777 something random and the asi wanted xxx".xx".xx" format? So did the first number and ?? The rest.

 

Here is a tool to help convert the coordinates.

 

https://www.fcc.gov/...dio/dms-decimal

 

50.807 is 50° 48' 25.2"


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#41 DJL

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Posted 05 March 2021 - 06:25 PM

Well, finally getting first lol I mean light with this device tonight. So far I don't know what to think. Took me an hour to get focus for some reason. Doing manual with the ZenithStar 61 and it's bahtinov mask. That was the major challenge tonight. Kind of set the stage. Finally got that close. Next step guiding. Went a little quicker but the oag set up seems pretty dim, I might have the guide prism a little too far up. Up to like 4 second exposures.

Navigation around, probably take some getting used to. So far sat outside with it part of the night once I finally got a short sequence started. Since we ended up tripping over the pavers the tripod is mounted on to keep from sinking into the ground, and focus started to slip, opted to just do more testing since wifi connection is weak and won't work inside, I turned the screen off on my phone, put it in my pocket and came inside for a snack to see if the sequence will continue.

So, still not sure on this thing. Not sure the ZenithStar 61 is going to be a viable rig. Think auto focus is probably going to be needed. Not sure on the oag route yet. Definitely fumbling my way around the system.

I'm using the AAP with a WO GT81 + EAF and also with DSLR lenses and manual focus. There is a focus feature built into the Asiair app. Also, you can use the tools to display the FWHM for all the stars in the picture; where I live the best the EAF can do is about 2.9 so if I see that when focusing manually I know that's as good as it gets.



#42 elpajare

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 02:55 AM

I have received my Asiair Pro for a few weeks. Unfortunately, time does not allow me to test it and I have not been able to take any photos yet.

 

I have taken the opportunity to organize all my photography equipment to minimize the weight that the mount supports and reduce cables to a minimum, too. Right now, my telescope only supports the weight of the camera. I have removed absolutely everything that is not essential.

 

Asiair Pro is attached with velcro to the pillar where I have my mount anchored, the finderscope has disappeared, there is a single cable that connects Asiair with the 12 V power supply, another that connects with the mount and another one with the camera, that is everything. AAP's 12V power ports work great.

 

The software seems very easy to use, similar to that of ATIK-Infinity. You don't need many manuals to be able to use it. Just a little practice.

 

When I can photograph something, I will make another comment.



#43 iridium1986

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 03:11 AM

I have the Asiair Pro for a week. Nice device, good software.

I'm using it to control my cem40g. But I noticed that if I'm controlling it with an iPad in some cases the mount keeps slewing even when I release the move buttons. I need to power down my mount to let it stop. This scared the crap out of me. With the app on my Android I experienced no issues... Until last night. I tried to slew to Rigel (using the Android app) and hell broke loose: It kept slewing and hit the mount...

Anyone knows a fix? Or a normal way to prevent this to happen?

#44 elpajare

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Posted 10 March 2021 - 03:10 AM

Positive impacts most:

 

No need to line up one, two or three stars. Platesolving does it in just 2 seconds
I have removed the pc's from my computer, I only use a cheap tablet from Amazon
I have unloaded weight from my tube, I only have the camera connected: D. No finder, no guiding, no dovetails, ... etc
The soft is very intuitive and easy to use. I do not modify the captured images, I save them as is and process them later with Startools

 

Negative impacts:

 

A more extensive catalog of objects (Arp, Hicksons, Abell ..) and could eliminate even the Skysafari

 

This is a photo taken with 18x25 "exposure  (EAA) and treated with Startools. Darks, flays and bias applied. That night there was a gusty wind of 15 km / h and the stars did notice. I've done my best to hide it, something has remained

Attached Thumbnails

  • ARP 16 M 66 GX LEO 18X25 A45 M0 W12NW RC8+ASI296+UVIR copia.jpg

Edited by elpajare, 10 March 2021 - 03:14 AM.

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