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SkySafari, Skywire and LX200GPS control

I have a very basic question regarding telescope control of a Meade LX200GPS using SkySafari and SkyWire.  From what I have found on your website, it seems that after I hook up my iPhone to the telescopes RS232 port with the SkyWire cable, I would have to do a one star or two star alignment using the telescope hand controller first.  I would then connect the telescope to the SkySafari app by pressing connect in the App.  I could then control the telescope and find objects, perform GoTos using SkySafari, but the telescope hand controller would still be connected.  It seems you cannot use SkySafari to do the initial alignment of the telescope to the sky.  Another way to look at it is that SkySafari with SkyWire does not replace the telescope controller, but does provide a very easy to use method to navigate the sky.  I already have SkySafari Plus and really like it, just considering SkyWire to use a graphical interface rather than the menu driven telescope controller.  Is this correct?

 

I did submit this via the support page, then found this, so, you may have two copies.

6 comments

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    Bill Tschumy

    You are correct.  The Meade scopes will not talk to an external program via the RS-232 port until they've been aligned.  This means you still need to use the hand controller.

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    Tenringnow

    Wow, thanks for the quick response.  I will plan on ordering the SkyWire now that I understand the process.

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    Macatbay

    I am able to connect my Meade LX 200 via Skywire, but using an iPad mini 2 it will not go-to the chosen item. The slew buttons work, but once the slew starts there is no way to stop.

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    Bill Tschumy

    Macatbay,

    Is this consistent?  Whenever you touch a slew button, the slew won't stop when you lift your finger?  If so then all I can imagine is that you have some very old firmware in the mount that is not supported.  When you connect, does it correctly show where the scope is pointed?  If you move the scope using the hand controller, does the position update on the screen?

    Did you star align the mount before trying to connect?

     

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    Macatbay

    Yes, the slew problem is consistent. Once a slew button is pressed, it will not stop. If you push the opposite slew direction it will change direction, but that may not be consistent, it may not always change direction or there may be a delay in changing direction, I'm not sure.

    I would say that the direction it shows it pointing is incorrect. The telescope is probably pointed about 60 deg after doing the star alignment, and when connecting the display moves (not sure if to the correct direction) but is probably only pointed at about 20 deg.

    I do a normal location setting and star alignment and then connect with the app. I have tried unplugging the handbox after connecting, but that doesn't have any effect on the problem.

    If I connect with the app and then select an object and attempt a GOTO, nothing happens and the GOTO button is lit but there is absolutely no response.

    When the slew button in the app is pushed, the only way to stop the slew is to turn off the telescope, which necessitates a complete alignment again when I turn it back on.

    The version of Autostar is 4.2g, I'm not sure if that is the firmware ID.

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    Bill Tschumy

    This almost has to be a firmware incompatibility.  We haven't had others report any problems like this with the LX-200.  It is not a connectivity problem with the SkyWire. That either works or doesn't.  There is no partial failure with basic connectivity.

    How long ago did you get the mount?  You might check to see if there are firmware updates available.  To be honest, I don't recall hearing about any problems like this for the LX-200 so I'm not exactly sure what the issue might be.

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