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Power Supply Problems with ASIair Pro

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#1 osbourne one-nil

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 06:37 AM

My ASIair Pro keeps momentarily disconnecting. My supplier is happy to take a look at it, which is great, but they do seem pretty convinced it's a power supply issue and not because of a fault with the unit or power cable they supplied. They're recommending I get a regulated power supply; I can see a benefit in this but I don't think it will solve my problem. I think the power socket and power plug don't fit together as well as they should. 

 

https://photos.app.g...BS9KhNwWMMpCv87

 

Would anyone else agree or have any advice?

 

Thanks

 

 



#2 astrokeith

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 06:45 AM

That is clearly a connection problem. Whether it is the socket, plug or cable needs closer investigation.

 

Can you try that lead in another device? and/or try another lead in this ASIAIR Pro?

 

Saying use a regulated supply isnt the answer. The whole point of these products is so they can be used in the field off batteries.


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#3 osbourne one-nil

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 07:15 AM

The whole point of these products is so they can be used in the field off batteries.

Quite!

 

I am getting frustrated with this - not with the learning curve of shooting using these items (I enjoy that side of things) but of the temperamental nature of the hardware.

 

On your suggestion I've tried another 12v power supply and it works perfectly. However, the cable in the video also works perfectly when connected to the other piece of equipment. It's as if the AAP and the cable just don't get on very well!

 

I'll get the cable replaced I think and see how it goes. 



#4 grubba

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 08:21 AM

That happens when using a power plug of wrong dimensions. The (positive) pin not making proper contact.


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#5 osbourne one-nil

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 08:28 AM

That makes perfect sense - the confusing thing is I'm using a cable meant to be designed for this specific job. The random one I've just found in the shed, however, works perfectly! Go figure. 



#6 grubba

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 08:33 AM

There are quite a few different "standards" (an oxymoron). I don't have an ASIair so I don't know what plug it uses. The most common are 5.5mm/2.5mm and 5.5mm/2.1mm. To make it worse, they are not consistent. These are supposed to be one of each. The 2.1 is showing as 2.2. Using a larger plug will cause exactly what you are seeing.

 

IMG_1842.jpeg


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#7 astrokeith

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 08:34 AM

As #grubba says, is that the cable supplied with the ASIAIR?

 

There are a few similar plugs 2.1/5.5 & 2.5/5.5, some have longer contacts, and some are just bad quality.

 

The ASIAIR Pro input connector is a little unusual in that it has a whole circle of negative contact fingers, this is better than the usual single version, but it does mean the plug is well centred which means the centre positive contact can 'miss'.

 

Also, the cable in the video has a stiff covering at the plug end, this will put extra stress on the connection.



#8 osbourne one-nil

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 08:49 AM

They don't supply one! I ordered mine from First Light Optics and they list it as being tailor-made for the job. However, it isn't reliable yet seems to power anything else I have quite happily. I think you're right about the heat-shrink wrapping perhaps causing the issue. 

 

At least I've got something that works now!



#9 astrokeith

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 09:14 AM

I would recommend making or buying one with a right angle plug. Much less strain and easier to make tidy and safe.


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#10 osbourne one-nil

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 09:36 AM

I'm more pondering the beautiful simplicity of a DSLR connected to a telescope!


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#11 astrokeith

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 09:40 AM

Ah, thats why I stick to my mk1 eyeball!


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#12 Jeff Morgan

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 10:07 AM

There are quite a few different "standards" (an oxymoron). I don't have an ASIair so I don't know what plug it uses. The most common are 5.5mm/2.5mm and 5.5mm/2.1mm. To make it worse, they are not consistent. These are supposed to be one of each. The 2.1 is showing as 2.2. Using a larger plug will cause exactly what you are seeing.

 

 

They are not consistent.

 

I tried the 5.5mm cable that serves as my Argo Navis back-up. Did not work on my AAP unless wiggled. (Initially I though my AAP was dead on arrival!)

 

Trying several others, I did find one that makes a reliable physical connection and made up a power cable with a car plug and fuse protection.

 

A great source for these is your local Goodwill, Habitat for Humanity, or Thrift stores. You can get a fistful of electrical cables with 5.5mm ends for maybe $10. Don't worry about the other end of cable, it can be snipped off and discarded. Test them all until you get a winner, then make it into a power cable.


Edited by Jeff Morgan, 02 August 2021 - 10:07 AM.


#13 astrokeith

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 10:20 AM

They are not consistent.

 

I tried the 5.5mm cable that serves as my Argo Navis back-up. Did not work on my AAP unless wiggled. (Initially I though my AAP was dead on arrival!)

 

Trying several others, I did find one that makes a reliable physical connection and made up a power cable with a car plug and fuse protection.

 

A great source for these is your local Goodwill, Habitat for Humanity, or Thrift stores. You can get a fistful of electrical cables with 5.5mm ends for maybe $10. Don't worry about the other end of cable, it can be snipped off and discarded. Test them all until you get a winner, then make it into a power cable.

Cant really recommend this approach!

Its very difficult to see what the centre pin diameter is 2.1 or 2.5mm. This is the bit that usually causes problems.

 

It might be Ok for an output lead, but in this case it may be trying to deliver 4-6Amps into the ASIAIR. Many of those lightweight adapters have cables with about 5 thin strands of copper. I measured one a friend was having trouble with and got 1 ohm for each wire over 2 metres. Thats going to lose half the 12V at least.

 

Mounts with stepper motor drives in particular can be susceptible. Although the mean current may be an amp or less, the peak current for each motor step could be many amps albeit for milliseconds. So the voltage at the motor drive board can dip by volts, just at the very moment the motor needs the full current. 



#14 osbourne one-nil

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Posted 02 August 2021 - 10:39 AM

...I wonder how long I can shoot with my DSLR assuming a decent polar alignment?




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