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Starry Night & EQMOD Slewing to is wrong location

The date, time and time zone are set correctly in Orion SN Special Edition. I have an Atlas AZ/EQ Pro6 mount and I am connecting through EQMOD. The software connects through EQMOD fine but when it slews it appears to be about an hour off. I set the daylight savings time to off on both the HC and computer. SN however, still slews to the wrong location. I have verified that the home coordinates are correct.

I also have issues with it randomly starting in the wrong year. month and day, as well as random crashes.

I am using Windows 7 Professional.

12 comments

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    Sophie Cheng

    Hello Ed,

    I believe you have submitted a new ticket request - our staff will get back to you shortly. 

    Best,

    Sophie

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    Keiron Smith

    Hi Ed,

    Starry Night time is based on your computer operating system time. The two must be set correctly, and in sync. An error in either will result in a Starry Night error in calculation. For the moment, let us assume your operating system clock is set correctly. So, lets look at Starry Night.

    If you go to File--->Set Home Location--->and then look at the "Map" tab, you will probably see that there is a little red "X" (which represents your location on the global map) somewhere in middle of the Atlantic Ocean or India or somewhere else. The little red "X" needs to be where you are actually located (as a timezone). It doesn't have to be on your exact city, but in the same general vicinity. Once the "X" has been located properly, your Starry Night time should read correctly. Please have a look at this, and let me know whether this resolves the issue for you.

    In Starry Night please check the following:

    1. Go to File ---> Set Home Location ---> Choose your city from the "List" tab or by entering your zip code on the "Zip/Postal Code" tab.
    2. Go to the Map tab and make sure the X is position in the general vicinity. So long as the X is positioned just about right, that ok.
    3. Go to the "Latitude/Longitude" tab and confirm that your "Time Zone" is set correctly. Check the option for "Automatic".
    4. Go to the "Latitude/Longitude" tab and confirm that DST is set correctly.
    5. Go to the Starry Night Time & Date functions (top-left of application window) and makes sure that DST is set correctly.

    On your computer please do the following:

    1. Go to your operating system clock and choose the option to make changes.
    2. Confirm that you are, in fact, correctly set for your time zone.
    3. Confirm the clock time & date are correct.

    If all of the above are true it is not possible for Starry Night to give you an incorrect time.

    So, please spend a few minutes going over all the details above and verify that everything is set up correctly. If Starry Night is not giving you the correct time then something in the list above in not set properly.

  • 0
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    Ed Sibley

    I followed your directions and this is the result.

    From the parked position I selected an initial star (Rigel) and it slewed over fairly close and I centered it and "sync to gaze". EQMOD recorded on alignment point. When I select a 2nd alignment star (Pollux) it is nowhere close! I actually have to go to maximum slew rate to get it over to the Pollux. I centered and hot "sync to gaze". EQMOD recorded a second alignment point. I then moved to the third start. The third star is even further off than the second star. After doing this, the Park position is hosed up as well. Come on people, what gives here?!!!!

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    Keiron Smith

    Hi Ed,

    You need to star align the telescope using the hand controller before connecting to Starry Night.  Are you doing this?  Thanks!

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    Ed Sibley

    Since you cannot use EQMOD and EQDirect with the Synscan HC (you get random dropped connections), you cannot do a star alignment before connecting to the software. EQMOD plainly says on their web site that EQMOD through the Synscan HC is not supported. I understood that you can use the SN software to do the star alignment through EQMOD like most of the other planetarium programs out their, as EQMOD has an alignment procedure that recognizes the sync command in most planetarium software packages. Are you telling me that SN will not work like all the others with EQMOD?!!!

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    Keiron Smith

    Hi Ed,

    I suggest taking this query to the CloudyNights.com software forum or https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/StarryNight/conversations/messages

    Please also see here - it references Starry Night V5 but might still work the same:

    http://eq-mod.sourceforge.net/faqs/snp5.html

     Also, this thread, though old, may help you understand how to set up EQMOD with Starry Night:

    http://www.astronomyforum.net/telescope-mounts-forum/112678-alignment-using-eqmod-starry-night.html

  • 0
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    Ed Sibley

    Keiron,

    I have checked with the people that developed EQMOD and they said that EQMOD is not compatible with the Synscan HC (using PC Direct). You can use a RS232 serial to USB connector through PC Direct, but according to the EQMOD developers, EQMOD will not function properly. In other words, the computer must be directly connected to the mount (with no Synscan HC).

    There is no other way to connect the Atlas AZ/EQ Pro mount that I can find. You have to connect it using an EQDirect type connector (such as one from Shoestring Astronomy). My own experience is that SN will not work on a consistent basis using the EQMOD connection, as EQMOD randomly drops tracking while using PC Direct through the HC. Seems you guys need to get with the technology and allow SN to use the star alignment function that is built into EQMOD. My understanding is that when in PC Direct mode the star alignment is controlled by the planetarium software THROUGH EQMOD. Apparently, there is an issue with SN knowing where it is pointing when connecting through EQMOD and/or PC Direct (or EQ Direct). I have an EQDirect connector on order, but if I understand you then SN will not know where it is pointed because there will be no HC. Is this correct???!!! If so, your engineers should be made aware of this fact.

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    Marko Kudjerski

    Hi Ed,

    EQMOD actually control the alignment procedure here and SN is the planetarium. The 3-star alignment procedure is not complete until all 3 stars have been marked in the process which would explain why when going from star 1 to star 2 to star 3 you are running into issues with accuracy. However, once the procedure is complete both your telescope and Starry Night should be pointing at the same object.

    For the sake of figuring out exactly where the process fails, could you go step by step through this guide: http://eq-mod.sourceforge.net/faqs/snp5.html and let us know where the process first fails and how?

    We understand that you cannot use SN through Synscan HC and that's fine, let's simply follow EQMOD's instructions (http://eq-mod.sourceforge.net/faqs/snp5.html) and see where the issue first arises.

    Clear skies!

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    Ed Sibley

    Marko,

    I was using the procedure you described with the exception of step 11. I was using "sync gaze" from the telescope control panel. I was not aware there was a "sync on" command with the right click as the manual does not mention it. Is there a difference between the two sync commands? If so, what is the difference between sync gaze and sync on?

    Also, I can connect SN through the HC in EQMOD just fine. However, it randomly stops tracking. This happens anywhere from 1 minute to 15 or more minutes and seems to be no pattern. That is what I was referring to when I said earlier that the people  that developed EQMOD said it was not compatible with the Synscan HC.

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    Marko Kudjerski

    Hi Ed,

    That may be the crux of the problem. "Sync on" will use the coordinates of a star while "Sync gaze" will use the coordinates of the center of the screen which would perhaps seriously mess up the 3-star alignment.

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    Ed Sibley

    Thanks Marko...You hit the nail on the head. I was using the wrong sync button and now the sync function works like a charm. A 7 star alignment was no problem and now it gets me on my target without having to use an eyepiece.

     

    Ed

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    Marko Kudjerski

    Hi Ed, that's wonderful news! Enjoy using Starry Night with your telescope.

    Clear skies!

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