Date   

Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

Wes Mcdonald
 

Craig

The Configuration manager is an older utility created to allow sending commands manually to the pmc8, manipulate the WiFi mode between udp and tcp, switching the firmware back and forth from WiFi  and serial communications mode, and loading new firmware.

Many of it’s features are not necessarily needed with the new 2A01 version of the firmware which made many improvements to the configurability of the firmware.  It remains the best way to update the firmware.   

Those following the forum know that all you have to do to load new firmware is to go to the firmware tab on the configuration manager, download by a single button all of the approved firmware versions, select the one you want and then press a button there to load it into the PMC8.  Of course this requires that you have serial connectivity via the appropriate cable, which for the iexos is a usb cable with appropriate connectors.   One does however have to have a usb to serial driver loaded on the PC, which is just how it is with windows.

The latest firmware has many changes from the old firmware.   These changes require that non volatile memory in the pmc8 be properly initialized after loading the 2A01 firmware for the first time.  This is explained in the firmware installation pdf document included in the install pack.  The old CM could not do the updates required in an efficient way, though all could be done with it if one was greatly informed as to the minutia of the firmware.   ES made a decision to create a Universal Firmware Configuration Tool that streamlined the process and allows the user to choose the configuration parameters using plain English descriptors and a simple user interface.  The ability to load firmware was not built into the UFCT in its initial release.  Understand ES evolves all of its firmware products continually, thus the UFCT of today is not the end of the line.  It is easy to spot and comment on improvements and these are welcome, there is a forum group for just that.  Suggestions there are rolled in as merited, and  when time and effort can be spent doing so.

The new firmware also requires changes to the older ASCOM driver, thus the new driver is also found in the install pack.

I believe it is important to recognize the extent to which all of this remains backward compatible.   While the new firmware features additions and capabilities not supported by the older firmware, all of the older firmware remains compatible with Explorestars and new ASCOM driver.  This is a testament to the design philosophy and commitment ES has to their users.  Many companies would just dump this new stuff and deprecate the old completely.   

My recommendation to all users of this equipment is to keep up with the topics and discussion threads on the forum.  Every issue you had has been discussed numerous times in the intervals surrounding the releases of the upgrades, and these serve to inform everyone of what is needed when they make the move to upgrade.   Baring that, the forum has many members who are regularly answering questions such as yours and in fact did respond to you with the information you needed.   We are helpful bunch of thugs.

I will close by simply stating that no one is satisfied with the documentation of any technical  system that I know of.  ES has limited resources and focuses on product development, with documentation as needed but not designed to be a step 0 to step 100 process description.  They established the forum where people can ask questions and research topics when they get stuck.  And in the case of the new firmware there is an Install manual that has been found to be sufficient by nearly everyone who used it.   

So that’s the deal.  You can write up your recommendations and change requests and post them on the forum in the feature request subgroup.  You can follow the forum regularly to see the questions and answers, many of which I am sure  will be apropos to your experience one day.   

Wes


--
Wes, Southport NC
EXos2-GT PMC-8, iExos 100
ES ED 127, 10" LX200GPS+wedge, Astro-Tech 8" Newt, ETX-90, 60mm no-name guide scope ~ 260mm FL
Polemaster, Orion ST-80 and SAG, ZWO 290MM, D5300 astro modified
Nina, Bootcamped Mac Mini control computer, RDP to iMAC
110 amp hour lead acid deep discharge battery for field power
Electrical Engineer, Retired


Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

CBobchin
 

On Fri, Sep 10, 2021 at 06:50 AM, Jennifer Shelly wrote:
You do not need a serial to USB cable for the iExos-100 because it already has the conversion chip for serial to USB in it.  What you do need is a USB 2 Mini-B 5 pin to USB 2 Standard A cable to upgrade the firmware.  If you
kept any cables from an older phone you might already have one.
Thanks Jennifer, I'm pretty sure I have such a cable. I was using my USB mini from my MGEN III Guider, which is obviously a newer version.
 
--
Craig M. Bobchin
San Antonio Tx
Mounts: Losmandy G-11 Gemini 1, ES iEXOS-100, Celestron Evolution, SkyWatcher Az-GTi
Scopes: ES ED127, Celestron 80ED, Celestron 9.25 SCT, William Optics Whitecat 51
Cameras: Pentax K-1, ZWO ASI174MM, Canon 70D, SBIG STF 8300C
Imaging Software:  Firecapture, SharpCap Pro
Processing Software: APP, DSS, Sequator, PixInsight, StarTools, Lightroom/Photoshop


Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

CBobchin
 

On Fri, Sep 10, 2021 at 06:24 AM, Wes Mcdonald wrote:
Craig
 
Please complete your signature.
 
The UFCT is in the pack. It is called (strangely) PMC-Eight 2A01 Configuration Tool 1.0.
 
Completed the Signature

Methinks the documentation is in need of updating if the file is named differently in the zip file and the PDF instructions. As someone who does not live on the forums, I was following the instructions provided and came to a standstill.

Also What's the difference between the Configuration Manager utility and the PMC-Eight 2A01 Configuration Tool 1.0? 

Updating firmware shouldn't be this difficult. 


Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

Steve Siedentop
 

Hi Craig - 

I just checked the download link on the ES website and both the configuration tool (specific for the new firmware) and the configuration utility by Chris Moses are in the zip file.

Here's the link:



image.png

-Steve

On Fri, Sep 10, 2021 at 12:36 AM CBobchin <Astronomy@...> wrote:
HI All,

I downloaded the latest firmware update kit for my IEXOS-100 and I unzipped the files and it did not include the PMC-Eight™ Universal Firmware Configuration Tool (UFCT) Executable file.

Where can I find this or can I just use the configuration manager to load the new eprom file?

Thanks

Craig


--
Mounts: ES PMC-8 G11 with Ruland Couplers and One Piece Worm Blocks, Skywatcher NEQ-6
Scopes: ES ED127CF FCD100, Orion 6” Mak, Stellarvue SV80EDT, Coronado Solarmax 40
Cameras:  CentralDS CDS-600, CentralDS Astro 60D, Orion Starshoot SSAG
Msc: Moonlite Focusers, Astrozap Dew Straps, Pegasus Ultimate PowerBox
Software: PixInsight, Cartes du Ciel, BackyardEOS, SkySafari


Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

Jennifer Shelly
 

Craig:

You do not need a serial to USB cable for the iExos-100 because it already has the conversion chip for serial to USB in it.  What you do need is a USB 2 Mini-B 5 pin to USB 2 Standard A cable to upgrade the firmware.  If you
kept any cables from an older phone you might already have one.
--
Sincerely,

Jennifer Shelly
AstroPorch, VA

Mounts: ES PMC-8 G-11, ES PMC-8 EXOS-2, ES PMC-8 iEXOS-100
Scopes: ES ED127 FCD-100, Askar FRA400, Askar FRA600, ES N208CF, QHY Mini Guide Scope, Solomark F60 Guide Scope
Cameras: QHY600M, QHY128C, QHY168C, QHY183M
Misc: MoonLite CFL 2.5 / High Res Stepper / V2 Mini Controller, Baader SteelTrack NT / SteelDrive II, Baader UFC, Optolong 2" L-Pro / L-eNhance / L-Extreme, QHY CFW3-L, Baader 2” LRGBSHO CCD, Primaluce Lab Sesto Senso 2, QHY CFW3-S, Optolong 1.25” LRGBSHO CCD
Imaging Software:  NINA, APT, SharpCap Pro
Processing Software: PixInsight, Lightroom, Premiere Elements


locked Re: Cge-Pro

Steve Siedentop
 

I believe Jerry at one point experimented with a CGE and the PMC-Eight.  I don’t recall what the outcome was.

Looking at the mount, it would certainly be doable mechanically.  The original CGE isn’t that far off from a G-11.

I think the real hurdle would be configuration of the firmware.

Jerry, thoughts?

-Steve

On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 8:36 PM Mike Hammer <kmhammer1@...> wrote:
Ettore,

The CGE-Pro uses servo motors with encoders. The PMC-8 is designed to work with stepper motors. Even if you had stepper motors, you would almost certainly need to be able to reprogram the PMC-8 for your gear ratio.

The CGE-Pro is a massive mount, just curious as to what telescope you are going to use with it? It would be massive overkill with the 70ED.

Regards 

On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 1:57 PM <ettore.ribaudo@...> wrote:

Hello boys i have other mount CGE-PRO, is possible to install PMC-Eight Goto?

I wait.

regards.

Ettore

--
Mounts: Iexos 100
Scopes: Tecnosky 70ED F 4.8
Cameras:  Nikon D5300
Country:Italy


--
Mounts: ES PMC-8 G11 with Ruland Couplers and One Piece Worm Blocks, Skywatcher NEQ-6
Scopes: ES ED127CF FCD100, Orion 6” Mak, Stellarvue SV80EDT, Coronado Solarmax 40
Cameras:  CentralDS CDS-600, CentralDS Astro 60D, Orion Starshoot SSAG
Msc: Moonlite Focusers, Astrozap Dew Straps, Pegasus Ultimate PowerBox
Software: PixInsight, Cartes du Ciel, BackyardEOS, SkySafari


Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

Wes Mcdonald
 

Craig

When you get your usb to serial cable you will also need to load a driver for it.  Be sure to get a cable with an FTDI chip in it.  Then you can get a suitable driver from the Parallax web site

Wes

--
Wes, Southport NC
EXos2-GT PMC-8, iExos 100
ES ED 127, 10" LX200GPS+wedge, Astro-Tech 8" Newt, ETX-90, 60mm no-name guide scope ~ 260mm FL
Polemaster, Orion ST-80 and SAG, ZWO 290MM, D5300 astro modified
Nina, Bootcamped Mac Mini control computer, RDP to iMAC
110 amp hour lead acid deep discharge battery for field power
Electrical Engineer, Retired


Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

Wes Mcdonald
 

Craig

Please complete your signature.

The UFCT is in the pack. It is called (strangely) PMC-Eight 2A01 Configuration Tool 1.0.

Wes


--
Wes, Southport NC
EXos2-GT PMC-8, iExos 100
ES ED 127, 10" LX200GPS+wedge, Astro-Tech 8" Newt, ETX-90, 60mm no-name guide scope ~ 260mm FL
Polemaster, Orion ST-80 and SAG, ZWO 290MM, D5300 astro modified
Nina, Bootcamped Mac Mini control computer, RDP to iMAC
110 amp hour lead acid deep discharge battery for field power
Electrical Engineer, Retired


Re: I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

Larry Young
 

Hi Craig,
     You can Google PMC8 UFCT to find the software.  You need a USB to Serial cable with the FTDI chipset to connect your laptop to the PMC8.

Best,

Larry


From: MAIN@ESPMC-Eight.groups.io <MAIN@ESPMC-Eight.groups.io> on behalf of CBobchin <Astronomy@...>
Sent: Thursday, September 9, 2021 9:36:48 PM
To: MAIN@ESPMC-Eight.groups.io <MAIN@ESPMC-Eight.groups.io>
Subject: [ESPMC-Eight] I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE
 

[Edited Message Follows]

HI All,

I downloaded the latest firmware update kit for my IEXOS-100 and I unzipped the files and it did not include the PMC-Eight™ Universal Firmware Configuration Tool (UFCT) Executable file.

Where can I find this or can I just use the configuration manager to load the new eprom file?

Also my laptop does not have a serial port only usb ports. 
How can I upload the firmware with just USB ports? When I tried it said no ports found.
Thanks

Craig

--
EXOS II PMC-8
Celestron 6SE
Dobstuff rebuild of Coulter 17 with Nexus2


I downloaded the firmware upgrade kit but 1 file was missing #FIRMWARE

CBobchin
 
Edited

HI All,

I downloaded the latest firmware update kit for my IEXOS-100 and I unzipped the files and it did not include the PMC-Eight™ Universal Firmware Configuration Tool (UFCT) Executable file.

Where can I find this or can I just use the configuration manager to load the new eprom file?

Also my laptop does not have a serial port only usb ports. 
How can I upload the firmware with just USB ports? When I tried it said no ports found.
Thanks

Craig


locked Re: Cge-Pro

Jerry Hubbell - Explore Scientific VP Engineering
 

On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 09:39 PM, myron_wasiuta wrote:
Its a fantastic system! I had help from Jerry himself, as well as Matt Scott whi did the machning for us. Could not have done it without either of them!I have enclosed a couple photos showing the telescope and mounts. 
 
I want to say that this is not a product offered by Explore Scientific. This was a prototype development at the MSRO where Explore Scientific does product testing and future product development research. 
 
--
Jerry Hubbell
Vice President of Engineering

Explore Scientific, LLC.
jrh at explorescientific.com

www.explorescientificusa.com
1010 S. 48th Street
Springdale, AR 72762
1-866-252-3811

Author: Scientific Astrophotography: How Amateurs Can Generate and Use Professional Imaging Data
             Remote Observatories for Amateur Astronomers: Using High-Powered Telescopes From Home


Mark Slade Remote Observatory (MSRO) IAU MPC W54 Equipment
Wilderness, VA
Mounts
: ES PMC-Eight G11 + Telescope Drive Master (TDM)
Scopes: ES 165 FPL-53 ED APO CF, ES 102 FCD100 ED APO CF
Cameras:  QHY174M-GPS + FW, QHY163C
Misc: 3-inch 0.7x Focal Reducer Field Flattener, Filters: Luminance,
Red, V-band Photometric, Diffuser, 200 lpmm Spectral Grating

Software: MaxIm DL 6, Cartes du Ciel, Astrometrica, AstroImageJ, AutoStakkert!


locked Re: Cge-Pro

myron_wasiuta
 


Ettore,
Your question about the CGE Pro is interesting. I use a CGE Pro to carry a 10” RC. Its true it would be difficult to convert to a PMC-8 system.  But it is possible. It wiuld tske skulled machining to modify the motor blocks and definately  require a reprogramming of the PMC -8. Interstingly as I am clise friends ( and neighbor) of Jerry Hubbell we actually did convert a CGE mount to the PMC-8 which we use in our Station 3 enclosure. Its a fantastic system! I had help from Jerry himself, as well as Matt Scott whi did the machning for us. Could not have done it without either of them!I have enclosed a couple photos showing the telescope and mounts. 

Myron Wasiuta
Director- Mark Slade Remote Observatory 
Wilderness VirginiaUSA

On Sep 9, 2021, at 9:20 PM, ettore.ribaudo@... wrote:



I have to buy the Newton 305/1200

Ettore

--
Mounts: IExos 100
Scopes: Tecnosky 70ED F 4.8
Cameras:  Nikon D5300
Country:Italy


locked Re: Cge-Pro

ettore.ribaudo@...
 

I have to buy the Newton 305/1200

Ettore

--
Mounts: IExos 100
Scopes: Tecnosky 70ED F 4.8
Cameras:  Nikon D5300
Country:Italy


Re: Astrophotography Done with the iEXOS-100, EXOS 2, and G11 Post your Pictures and Details! Lets Show What These Mounts Can Do. #G11 #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2

Frank Rich
 

I think it’s great for your 1st,we only go up from here 

Frank Rich

On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 3:44 PM Godfrey B <godash23@...> wrote:
My first post!
Heart Star.jpg

Taken on Sept 6th in my front yard
392x25s ISO 1600 using an Optolong L-pro filter and my 70-300mm Nikkor with the IEXOS-100 and my Nikon D5300

This photo is 2hrs and 24 mins of integration time in a Bortle 8 zone - its not much, but it's mine.


On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 3:13 PM Dave Cherry <andromedacity@...> wrote:

Some very nice shots there guys 😊

 

I haven’t posted for a while.

Here in Uk we haven’t had a great deal of clear nights

There was a a couple recently with a v dark moonless sky

 

I was happy to get this one of Andromeda in my Bortle 4-5 sky with just a  uv filter

 

I took 3.5 hours of lights, but wind blew the mount quite a bit so after throwing the blurs out, this shot is about 2 hrs worth of subs

 

Comments (good.. and constructive!) welcome.

 

Cheers

Dave C

 

 

 

 

 

Sent from Mail for Windows

 


--
Scopes: Sky Watcher 200PDS, Skywatcher 72ED
Mount: Explore Scientific PMC8 EXO2
Cameras: ASI 294MCPRO Coooled, Altair guide cam + 50mm scope
Software: Sharpcap Pro ,PH2, Stelarium Startools


--

Godfrey Benjamin
Mount: IEXOS-100 with Polar Scope
Camera: Nikon D5300
Hardware: Amazon Fire HD8
Software: ExploreStars
Scarborough, Ontario, Canada


locked Re: Cge-Pro

Mike Hammer
 

Ettore,

The CGE-Pro uses servo motors with encoders. The PMC-8 is designed to work with stepper motors. Even if you had stepper motors, you would almost certainly need to be able to reprogram the PMC-8 for your gear ratio.

The CGE-Pro is a massive mount, just curious as to what telescope you are going to use with it? It would be massive overkill with the 70ED.

Regards 

On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 1:57 PM <ettore.ribaudo@...> wrote:

Hello boys i have other mount CGE-PRO, is possible to install PMC-Eight Goto?

I wait.

regards.

Ettore

--
Mounts: Iexos 100
Scopes: Tecnosky 70ED F 4.8
Cameras:  Nikon D5300
Country:Italy


Re: Astrophotography Done with the iEXOS-100, EXOS 2, and G11 Post your Pictures and Details! Lets Show What These Mounts Can Do. #G11 #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2

Chris Hanson
 
Edited

My first picture

Taken September 6 from my backyard



Scopes: Celestron 8" Edge HD
Mount: Explore Scientific PMC8 EXO2
Cameras: ASI 183MCPRO Cooled, Celestron .7 Reducer
Software: ASIStudio Planetary Imaging , Stellarium, Photoshop, AutoStakkert


Re: Astrophotography Done with the iEXOS-100, EXOS 2, and G11 Post your Pictures and Details! Lets Show What These Mounts Can Do. #G11 #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2

Godfrey B
 

My first post!
Heart Star.jpg

Taken on Sept 6th in my front yard
392x25s ISO 1600 using an Optolong L-pro filter and my 70-300mm Nikkor with the IEXOS-100 and my Nikon D5300

This photo is 2hrs and 24 mins of integration time in a Bortle 8 zone - its not much, but it's mine.


On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 3:13 PM Dave Cherry <andromedacity@...> wrote:

Some very nice shots there guys 😊

 

I haven’t posted for a while.

Here in Uk we haven’t had a great deal of clear nights

There was a a couple recently with a v dark moonless sky

 

I was happy to get this one of Andromeda in my Bortle 4-5 sky with just a  uv filter

 

I took 3.5 hours of lights, but wind blew the mount quite a bit so after throwing the blurs out, this shot is about 2 hrs worth of subs

 

Comments (good.. and constructive!) welcome.

 

Cheers

Dave C

 

 

 

 

 

Sent from Mail for Windows

 


--
Scopes: Sky Watcher 200PDS, Skywatcher 72ED
Mount: Explore Scientific PMC8 EXO2
Cameras: ASI 294MCPRO Coooled, Altair guide cam + 50mm scope
Software: Sharpcap Pro ,PH2, Stelarium Startools


--

Godfrey Benjamin
Mount: IEXOS-100 with Polar Scope
Camera: Nikon D5300
Hardware: Amazon Fire HD8
Software: ExploreStars
Scarborough, Ontario, Canada


Re: Astrophotography Done with the iEXOS-100, EXOS 2, and G11 Post your Pictures and Details! Lets Show What These Mounts Can Do. #G11 #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2

Dave Cherry
 

Some very nice shots there guys 😊

 

I haven’t posted for a while.

Here in Uk we haven’t had a great deal of clear nights

There was a a couple recently with a v dark moonless sky

 

I was happy to get this one of Andromeda in my Bortle 4-5 sky with just a  uv filter

 

I took 3.5 hours of lights, but wind blew the mount quite a bit so after throwing the blurs out, this shot is about 2 hrs worth of subs

 

Comments (good.. and constructive!) welcome.

 

Cheers

Dave C

 

 

 

 

 

Sent from Mail for Windows

 


--
Scopes: Sky Watcher 200PDS, Skywatcher 72ED
Mount: Explore Scientific PMC8 EXO2
Cameras: ASI 294MCPRO Coooled, Altair guide cam + 50mm scope
Software: Sharpcap Pro ,PH2, Stelarium Startools


locked Cge-Pro

ettore.ribaudo@...
 

Hello boys i have other mount CGE-PRO, is possible to install PMC-Eight Goto?

I wait.

regards.

Ettore

--
Mounts: Iexos 100
Scopes: Tecnosky 70ED F 4.8
Cameras:  Nikon D5300
Country:Italy


Re: Astrophotography Done with the iEXOS-100, EXOS 2, and G11 Post your Pictures and Details! Lets Show What These Mounts Can Do. #G11 #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2

Frank Rich
 

Very Nice Ian!!, thanks for the link to articles on Starnett

Frank R

On Thu, Sep 9, 2021 at 10:32 AM Ian Morison <ian@...> wrote:
Hi All,
          I bought the iEXOS-100 to take on our Astronomy Society Field trips to a dark site.  Due to COVID we have just had our first visit to Anglesey - so this is my first result from a dark sky.   I used a Nikon to astro-camera adapter with a 300 mm, f/4.5, lens at full aperture and took 200, 30 second exposures.  Frames were aligned and stacked in Deep Sky Stacker and then  the galaxy and stars were separated using Starnett++.  Both images were then processed individually and recombined.  This allows one to enhance the galaxy without 'blowing out' the stars.

Articles about this, Starnett++ and many other aspects of astrophotography which could be useful can be found in my 'Astronomy Digest'  - just search or goto:  www.ianmorison.com. (Note a single 'r')
It is a super little mount!

Cheers,
Ian

PS: Having Polar aligned using SharpCap Pro, Andromeda was dead centre in the frame!

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