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Looking for Nexstar Hand Controller for Advanced GT Mount

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#1 dlwerw

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Posted 15 September 2023 - 02:06 PM

Recently bought a Celestron ASGT mount and scope (see pic of mount) and it doesn't have the handheld controller. Any help on what one I will need? Thanks!!

 

 

 

IMG_0361-resized.jpg



#2 SDTopensied

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Posted 15 September 2023 - 02:20 PM

The latest version of the handset will work as will older versions.  You can also update the handset to ALT/AZ firmware or EQ firmware versions.  So if the only one you can find is for an SLT mount (alt/az), you can update it with EQ firmware using Celestron's CFM (Celestron Firmware Manager) application.   You'll save quite a bit of money buying used with this kind of thing.  They're readily available on eBay.

 

-Steve



#3 dlwerw

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Posted 15 September 2023 - 10:25 PM

Thanks Steve for the feedback. It's good to hear that the current handsets should work. My only problem is I would like to find one that has a current EQ firmware update on it. I have a Mac and the Celestron Firmware Manager does not work on Macs and I hate to buy a Windows pc just to run a handset firmware update. Any ideas where I could find a handset with current EQ updates?

Thanks again.

Dave



#4 mich_al

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Posted 16 September 2023 - 09:09 AM

Thanks Steve for the feedback. It's good to hear that the current handsets should work. My only problem is I would like to find one that has a current EQ firmware update on it. I have a Mac and the Celestron Firmware Manager does not work on Macs and I hate to buy a Windows pc just to run a handset firmware update. Any ideas where I could find a handset with current EQ updates?

Thanks again.

Dave

wing_and_sons on ebay  have HC controllers and will program them to your spec.  I've bought from them in the past with good result.


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#5 dlwerw

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Posted 16 September 2023 - 09:28 AM

Thanks Steve for the info! I just contacted them to see what they can do.

Dave



#6 MJB87

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Posted 16 September 2023 - 10:19 AM

Moving to an appropriate forum.



#7 dlwerw

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Posted 16 September 2023 - 11:31 AM

So if I bought a Celestron 93982 NexStar+ EQ Hand Control, would this work without having to any firmware upgrades? It states that it works on all Celestron EQ mounts.



#8 mlord

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Posted 16 September 2023 - 12:03 PM

It will work, but will have bugs that have since been fixed in newer firmware, and may lack support for the latest Celestron accessories.

 

All of which may not be of concern.  But if something doesn't work, then at least check the (out-of-date) firmware ChangeLog to see if it is something with a known fix already:  https://www.celestro...-update-history


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#9 mlord

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Posted 16 September 2023 - 03:14 PM

If the hand-controller is new with seller warranty, then go ahead and update it NOW, while it is still returnable.  If anything goes wrong with the update, send it back.  This is a warranty issue, so no moral dilemma there -- the manufacturer clearly says:

 

     "Celestron recommends that you always use the latest version of the firmware in your devices."


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#10 Orion68

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Posted 16 September 2023 - 08:07 PM

I use a Nexstar+ HC with version 5.31.9200. It isn't the latest firmware but it works fine for me. I tried the newest firmware version and had problems so I went back to this version.

 

Good luck. You'll like the mount.

 

Nexstar+ HC.jpg


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#11 SkipW

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Posted 17 September 2023 - 02:51 PM

I use a Nexstar+ HC with version 5.31.9200. It isn't the latest firmware but it works fine for me. I tried the newest firmware version and had problems so I went back to this version.

 

Good luck. You'll like the mount.

 

attachicon.gif Nexstar+ HC.jpg

That's the latest version I have in several handsets. What's there works fine for me so there is no good reason for me to update any of them.


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#12 dlwerw

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Posted 17 September 2023 - 03:27 PM

Apollo, that's good to know. I found a NS+ with the latest version. So should I avoid the latest and see if they can install 5.31.9200? Thanks for the input!



#13 mlord

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Posted 17 September 2023 - 04:21 PM

That's the latest version [5.31.9200] I have in several handsets. What's there works fine for me so there is no good reason for me to update any of them.

The latest version is much newer than that now.

Bugs fixed since that release [5.31.9200] came out four years ago:

  • Bug Fix: Quick tapping on buttons sometimes caused mount to "run away" for half second.
  • Restored User Objects menu to GEM builds
  • Bug Fix: Asian font not displayed correctly
  • Bug Fix: Bold mode not persistent after power cycle
  • Bug Fix: Menu items missing from CGEM and CGEpro mounts
  • Bug Fix: GEM mounts were misidentified as Evolution after entering setup menu

Feature improvements since that four-year old release:

  • Support for Dew Heater.
  • Activated mount slew controls while using 6/9 buttons to move focuser
  • Added home menu item to AltAz mounts
  • StarSense AutoGuider support.

Cheers


Edited by mlord, 17 September 2023 - 04:22 PM.

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#14 SkipW

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Posted 17 September 2023 - 05:34 PM

Bug added (maybe):

  • Reports that Solar System Align stopped working.

 

None of the bugs in that list affect me (so far). I may want to test the "quick tap" issue, though. Until now, I didn't even know it was there, and I've often done very brief button presses.

 

No dew heater, no Celestron focuser, don't have an AltAz mount.

 

I do sometimes Solar System align and none of those other things would help me in any way. If any of these do become important, I'll probably update. Until then I see no upside, only a small, but nonzero, downside.

 

I did get a StarSense autoalign system to check out. It worked if given a nearly-open sky, but not in my yard which is pretty hemmed in with trees; I seldom use it because I can usually get finished aligning in about the same amount of time and I can start earlier after sunset than it can, and I can find enough stars to align on even when the view is too restricted for StarSense. I don't think that older StarSense will work as an AutoGuider, will it? If it will, I may update the SS HC to try it out.

 

You and I disagree on this particular topic, mlord. I'll do it when it gets me something I want or need, but I've always disliked flashing firmware because it can sometimes be difficult to recover failed attempts. Failures aren't terribly common, but they do happen, and beyond that, sometimes the "improvements" add new bugs to previously working systems. Worst (but by no means the only) such failure for me was while updating a bunch of military radios to enable a new mode we (a contractor) were required to use to keep operating. Out of 15 radios, 14 went (mostly) smoothly but one of the updates bricked the $30,000 radio. $5,000 plus shipping costs, two months, and a scad of paperwork later we had the radio back, all updated at the factory and working. Boy did we start he next update (one of the last) with much trepidation while we were still working out the repair process (and finding out the cost) for the previous one!


Edited by SkipW, 17 September 2023 - 05:35 PM.

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#15 dlwerw

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Posted 17 September 2023 - 06:13 PM

So based on what all of you are saying, should I go with the latest firmware or do I go with the 5.31.9200 release to be (suggested )safe? I have no "add on" ex: dew heater. autoguider, focuser etc. and usually use 2 star alignment This is a straight out of the box ASGT cg5 EQ mount as pictured above with no controller. I contacted wings- and-sons on ebay and he has a HC+ EQ that he will put any firmware version I want on it.

 

I have nothing but Macs and have a couple of friends that have windows pc's but don't want any software downloaded onto them that they won't need, understandable. I really don't want to buy a used Windows pc to just use once to do a firmware update for my scope. That's why I am just looking for a controller I can take out of the box and plug in to my ASGT mount. 

Thanks guys for your help!



#16 Orion68

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Posted 17 September 2023 - 08:35 PM

My take is to go with the older version 5.31.9200 unless you need some of the enhancements in the newer version.

 

I didn't need any of the enhancements and the new version bricked one of my HC's badly, so it was a no-brainer for me. I happily went back to the old version.

 

But, you might have no issues with installing the newer version.

 

Good luck with whatever you decide.


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#17 dlwerw

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Posted 18 September 2023 - 10:22 AM

Orion, I noticed you had version 5.20 for your mount on the pic of your controller. Is this the version you recommend for it? Thanks!



#18 mlord

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Posted 18 September 2023 - 11:01 AM

Orion, I noticed you had version 5.20 for your mount on the pic of your controller. Is this the version you recommend for it? Thanks!

That 5.20 is for the mount firmware (latest available), not for the hand-controller.
 


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#19 SkipW

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Posted 18 September 2023 - 07:59 PM

So based on what all of you are saying, should I go with the latest firmware or do I go with the 5.31.9200 release to be (suggested )safe? I have no "add on" ex: dew heater. autoguider, focuser etc. and usually use 2 star alignment This is a straight out of the box ASGT cg5 EQ mount as pictured above with no controller. I contacted wings- and-sons on ebay and he has a HC+ EQ that he will put any firmware version I want on it.

 

I have nothing but Macs and have a couple of friends that have windows pc's but don't want any software downloaded onto them that they won't need, understandable. I really don't want to buy a used Windows pc to just use once to do a firmware update for my scope. That's why I am just looking for a controller I can take out of the box and plug in to my ASGT mount. 

Thanks guys for your help!

If none of the bug fixes or enhancements are useful to you, 5.31.9200 is fine. No risk to the equipment. Maybe, maybe(!) the "quick-tap" bug could be a nuisance, but as I mentioned, I never knew it existed and do (or used to do) short taps while aligning. I've recently found that setting MOTOR SPEED 3 for final adjustments has made alignments easier by slowing them down to make them less finicky - perhaps an inadvertent work-around.


Edited by SkipW, 18 September 2023 - 08:01 PM.

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#20 Orion68

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Posted 19 September 2023 - 02:09 AM

I have never experienced the "quick tap" bug. Guess my fingers are too slow.

 

Version 5.31.9200 works flawlessly for me, I'm sticking with it. The new version doesn't offer anything I need, but it may for others.

 

I agree with Skip on using Motor speed 3 when you get close to centering an alignment star. With a higher motor speed it is too easy to scoot past the center of the eyepiece, then you have to back up and try it again. Sometimes I even use motor speed 2.

 

Good luck diwerw, let us know what you decide.


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#21 Orion68

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Posted 19 September 2023 - 02:13 AM

You could also ask the vendor if the HC is returnable if the latest firmware version gives you problems. That would be a risk free way to try the new version.


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#22 dlwerw

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Posted 28 September 2023 - 12:14 AM

Just received a controller from wing_and_sons on ebay with latest firmware and it works perfect. Thanks for the heads up on them.


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