Date   

Re: Ghetto azimuth adjuster #iEXOS-100

Parag Modi
 

Lutz,

I'm thinking of getting iEXOS100.  I am newbie to AP.  Can you please provide a bit more details on how to attach your design? 


Re: #iEXOS-100 #iEXOS-100

Parag Modi
 

Thank you.


Re: #iEXOS-100 #iEXOS-100

jdavis1278@...
 

1) If you can get a clear shot of Polaris, use an app to see where it's located around the NCP. Then I shine a green laser through the provided "alignment" hole, get Polaris pretty much located where it should be according to the app. Then I actually run a 2 star alignment, and I've gotten pretty crisp 90sec subs. 
2) 30 secs would be VERY reasonable, 1 min, possibly 90 secs.. If, on the other hand you get it REALLY good, then 2-4 mins especially if you're guiding (I am not, yet. Total noob) 
3) No idea. I know my limits, software programming is WAY outside of those limits. 
4) I'd assume so, I haven't tried it. 
5) Again, I'd assume so. To echo others, what target?
6) I know of no discounts. (I got my iExos 100 on telescopes.net (Woodland Hills) and they are still showing some in stock. )


Re: #iEXOS-100 #iEXOS-100

Harry
 

Hi Parag,

I started using my dslr and 300 zoom lens with my iExos 100 a couple of years ago. Here are some thoughts.

Will you be using a 7 inch or better iPad or Android tablet with the ExploreStars app to control it?

Do you have access to a Windows computer for occasional firmware updates?

Realize that the ExploreStars app was intended for visual use. However, it can be used for astrophotography.

Polar alignment is important. The better alignment, the better results. The app PS Align Pro, and an inexpensive red dot finder (Rigel) will help. I’ve found a 2 star alignment works just fine. Balancing also very important.

Exposures: I can get 30 seconds reliably. With a good PA, 45-60 seconds maybe. I did a shot of M31 at 79 seconds, and I was happy with the results. Yes, at longer exposures there may be a little star trailing. You have to judge your tolerance. Remember, this should be a fun hobby.

Planets, No. They are so small, even at 300mm. Moon, yes. 

Stacking, another big variable. I’ve done 10-50. Yes, more are better, but?

At its price point, I think its a great product! With “go to” its better than any sky tracker, and can grow with your hobby.

FYI, I now have an ASIair Pro, and ZWO guide camera, with a 80mm scope. Yes, these are nice, BUT not required now. Maybe for your future enjoyment. With the Pro, 5 minute exposures, PA a snap. Scope not necessary.

There are so many great people on these forums for help and guidance.

Harry




--
Harry
Vero Beach, FL

Mounts: ES iExos 100-PMC Eight
Scopes: ES  ED80CF, ES AR102,  Meade ETX 90 EC (Deforked)
Guide: ZWO 30mm Mini, ZWO ASI120MM-Mini
Software: ASIair Pro, iPad Pro, MacOS, Starry Sky Stacker, Affinity Photo, Lightroom,  SkySafari Plus
Cameras: Nikon D600, D5500
Misc: ES USB Power Bank, Rigel QuikFinder, 0.8x Focal Reducer
Filters:  Optolong L-Pro, L-eNhance






Re: #iEXOS-100 #iEXOS-100

Ian Morison
 

Dear Parag - a few pointers.  

'I have been getting started in AP with my DSLR.  So far I have been doing landscape (Milky Way) on a tripod without tracking by using image stacking approach.  I would now like to start imaging closer DSO (M31 etc) using my DSLR and 18-300 mm lens.  I have seen YouTube videos showing how that can be done without tracking, but I don't want to go about processing 600-1000 images for single object.  I'm interested in acquiring a low entry point tracker specifically iExos-100.  Can the community help me with a few questions to help me narrow down my choice?'

 

1) I see a lot of posts on challenges with polar alignment on this model.  Does a rough polar alignment followed by three star alignment a good way to get long exposures without investing in additional hardware at this time?

I would not try to use long exposures - there are problems apart from tracking - for example, if imaging the Orion nebula exposures of longer than about 15 seconds will 'blow out' the central region of the nebula. The same is true for the centre of the Andromeda Galaxy.  Image attached is of the Sword of Orion taken with 50, 15 second exposures.   I think 30 second or 1 minute exposures would be fine.  Only 60 frames needed at 1 minute for a 1 hour exposure.  Sequator will align and stack these quite quickly.  (See article in Digest mentioned below.)

2) With the above mentioned alignment, what are some realistic exposure times on an APS-C DSLR and 300mm zoom?

I had no problem  with 30 second exposures without star alignment having aligned on the NCP reasonably accurately.   It is good for the image to move across the sensor during the period of the exposure to remove the effects of hot pixels and 'Color Mottling'.  Just keep the exposures short enough so that star trailing is not a problem. 

3) The description says Open source software, but I'm unclear on exactly what portion of software is truly open source.  Is there an IDE and source code available to "tweak" the software?

Out of my league - though I have taught computer programming at University!

4) Is it possible to do planetary photography with long exposures?

No, long exposures are not needed.  BUT, if you have a Canon camera, you can use the free 'EOS Movie Record' program to use it as a webcam and do 'lucky imaging'  to greatly remove the effects of the atmosphere.  See the article in my Astronomy Digest (www.ianmorison.com - note a single 'r')  on imaging the Moon   -  'Using Deconvolution Sharpening on Lunar images captured with a Canon DSLR and EOS Movie Record'  

5) Is it possible to do time lapses?

I do  not see why not.  I think that you will need an intervalometer  ~ $20 on Amazon to automatically take the frames.  But I wonder what objects. ?   

6) Does Explore Scientific offer discounts for first time buyers?

Not that I know of.

I have put up a first 'review' of the  iExos-100  in the digest  which will be added to as I am able to use it more - only a couple of clear nights since I acquired it.  I had no real need to buy one but felt it 'deserved' to be bought as I really liked the concept and engineering.  It is really for use for astrophotography with a couple of short focal length refractors  but, given additional counter weights can support, for example, a Celestron C6 Schmidt-Cassegrain.

There are many other articles in the Digest that could help you on your way.  Let's hope the  iExos-100 is available again soon.

I do hope that this might help.

Cheers,

Ian


#iEXOS-100 #iEXOS-100

Parag Modi
 

Hello All,

 

I have been getting started in AP with my DSLR.  So far I have been doing landscape (Milky Way) on a tripod without tracking by using image stacking approach.  I would now like to start imaging closer DSO (M31 etc) using my DSLR and 18-300 mm lens.  I have seen YouTube videos showing how that can be done without tracking, but I don't want to go about processing 600-1000 images for single object.  I'm interested in acquiring a low entry point tracker specifically iExos-100.  Can the community help me with a few questions to help me narrow down my choice?

 

1) I see a lot of posts on challenges with polar alignment on this model.  Does a rough polar alignment followed by three star alignment a good way to get long exposures without investing in additional hardware at this time?

2) With the above mentioned alignment, what are some realistic exposure times on an APS-C DSLR and 300mm zoom?

3) The description says Open source software, but I'm unclear on exactly what portion of software is truly open source.  Is there an IDE and source code available to "tweak" the software?

4) Is it possible to do planetary photography with long exposures?

5) Is it possible to do time lapses?

6) Does Explore Scientific offer discounts for first time buyers?

 

Thank you,


Re: PMC-Eight Stellarium Setup Procedure #ASCOM

Paul Meesters
 

Tyler,

The steps in this procedure don't really work for me.
Both POTH AND Stellarium become unresponsive. Before coming to a total halt, Stellarium was very sluggish.
Probably a setting somewhere, I can't tell, because I have no clue what all those settings are for.

Maybe a more elaborate description of step 6 can be provided ?? "Enter the settings for your mount" ??
Step 9, requires the activation of a plugin. Took a while before I found that out :)

Thanks,
Paul


ExploreStars iOS tracking and point button?

AndreaB <AndreaBroad@...>
 

I am relatively new with this mount and am realizing more and more that I need to really learn to polar align lol.  I came from a Celestron Advanced VX where it was more forgiving on that.  I can’t polar align from my backyard as there are lots of trees to the north and will be attempting to learn to do drift alignment very soon. I also have the difficulty of trees and light pollution and alignment stars in explorestars is proving difficult as well.


But in the meantime, I’ve had luck at least going to Jupiter, Saturn and Mars.  With the mount pointed north and using ps align pro to daytime align, and just booting up ExploreStars iOS on my iPad and immediately going to the planets.  It gets me close enough and I slew a little to get it in an eyepiece and then the camera.  I do see that it’s tracking but the planet I’m looking at will move and I need to keep slewing to keep it there. I know that you can enter the coordinates directly, but I’ve also read on here that the point/track indicator is now a button? So I guess the coordinates you’re on are copied as your new target?  It sounds like this is so in the iOS version of ExploreStars, but I’m not seeing it.  It may be that I need to do some alignment stars before it becomes a button?  I have the latest version on my iPad.  

I realize I may be pushing the limits of not polar aligning, but I’m just trying to capture the bright planets while they’re out, and it would be nice if I could get it to Point at the coordinate I’m on without having type it in. It does seem to stay when I do.

Clear Skies!
--

Andrea
Atlanta, GA
Data Engineer 
Mount: ES EXOS-2GT w/PMC-8
Scopes: Celestron Edge HD8,  Lunt LS60THa DS
Cameras: ZWO ASI174MM; ZWO ASI224MC


Re: #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2 #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2 #astrophotography

Jeff Snell
 

Thanks Wes.  That’s what I was thinking given it’s a reflection nebula.    I tried to process to pick up the dust lanes but to no avail.


On Oct 12, 2020, at 7:06 PM, Wes Mcdonald <wesmcd6@...> wrote:


Jeff

Looks pretty good to me.  Iris needs a lot of exposures to bring it out.  Flaming star looks good!

On Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 7:39 PM Jeff Snell <Jeffery.snell1@...> wrote:
Flaming Star and Iris Nebula from last night.  Iris didn't turn out that well but my first attempt.  Can't tell if it's my processing or not enough light.  Critiques welcome.
Both shot at...
Exp: 3200 ISO/240s
40 light, 20 dark, 20 flat, 20 bias
Deep Sky Stacker/Photoshop

Taken with EXOS 2GT PMC Eight, ES ED 80 APO, Canon T5i, ASCOM POTH Hub, CdC, APT, PHD2.

Jeff

EXOS 2GT PMC-Eight w/Explore Stars
ES ED80mm APO
Celestron 8" Edge HD
Canon T5i w/ Spencer Camera Astro-mod
Polemaster, Orion Starshoot AutoGuider w/50mm Guidescope
ASCOM POTH Hub, CdC, APT, PHD2

On Sat, Aug 1, 2020 at 9:49 AM James Hubbard via groups.io <jamesmhubbard440=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Just wanted to share a few pics I have taken with my Exos2 PMC8 and also with my iexos100 PMC8 mounts. These are all single images with my Canon 60d 
<DSC_1284.jpg>
<1595115237917.jpg>
<1592655329648.jpg>
<1593030683744_Signature.jpg>


--
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: #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2 #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2 #astrophotography

Wes Mcdonald
 

Jeff

Looks pretty good to me.  Iris needs a lot of exposures to bring it out.  Flaming star looks good!

On Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 7:39 PM Jeff Snell <Jeffery.snell1@...> wrote:
Flaming Star and Iris Nebula from last night.  Iris didn't turn out that well but my first attempt.  Can't tell if it's my processing or not enough light.  Critiques welcome.
Both shot at...
Exp: 3200 ISO/240s
40 light, 20 dark, 20 flat, 20 bias
Deep Sky Stacker/Photoshop

Taken with EXOS 2GT PMC Eight, ES ED 80 APO, Canon T5i, ASCOM POTH Hub, CdC, APT, PHD2.

Jeff

EXOS 2GT PMC-Eight w/Explore Stars
ES ED80mm APO
Celestron 8" Edge HD
Canon T5i w/ Spencer Camera Astro-mod
Polemaster, Orion Starshoot AutoGuider w/50mm Guidescope
ASCOM POTH Hub, CdC, APT, PHD2

On Sat, Aug 1, 2020 at 9:49 AM James Hubbard via groups.io <jamesmhubbard440=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Just wanted to share a few pics I have taken with my Exos2 PMC8 and also with my iexos100 PMC8 mounts. These are all single images with my Canon 60d 


--
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: #astrophotography #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2 #iEXOS-100 #EXOS2 #astrophotography

Jeff Snell
 

Flaming Star and Iris Nebula from last night.  Iris didn't turn out that well but my first attempt.  Can't tell if it's my processing or not enough light.  Critiques welcome.
Both shot at...
Exp: 3200 ISO/240s
40 light, 20 dark, 20 flat, 20 bias
Deep Sky Stacker/Photoshop

Taken with EXOS 2GT PMC Eight, ES ED 80 APO, Canon T5i, ASCOM POTH Hub, CdC, APT, PHD2.

Jeff

EXOS 2GT PMC-Eight w/Explore Stars
ES ED80mm APO
Celestron 8" Edge HD
Canon T5i w/ Spencer Camera Astro-mod
Polemaster, Orion Starshoot AutoGuider w/50mm Guidescope
ASCOM POTH Hub, CdC, APT, PHD2


On Sat, Aug 1, 2020 at 9:49 AM James Hubbard via groups.io <jamesmhubbard440=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
Just wanted to share a few pics I have taken with my Exos2 PMC8 and also with my iexos100 PMC8 mounts. These are all single images with my Canon 60d 


Re: User Manual for Android version of ExploreStars? #ExploreStars #Android #VIDEO

Wes Mcdonald
 

If you have a tablet this is all easy.  You set your rate down to 3 or maybe 2. Then you hover your finger over an arrow and look through the eyepiece then press the button a short stab. Mount moves.  Correct direction?  Press again. Wrong direction?  Glance to key, get on another and repeat.  It takes a little practice but it’s easy enough.  

If you have a laptop, well it is hard to do.   But a windows tablet is ok.

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: User Manual for Android version of ExploreStars? #ExploreStars #Android #VIDEO

ttanquary@juno.com <ttanquary@...>
 

I’m in for the same reason. It’s very difficult to center an object looking back an forth between the eyepiece and computer, especially when you have to contort your body to be able to look through the eyepiece/ finder!


Re: User Manual for Android version of ExploreStars? #ExploreStars #Android #VIDEO

Jerry Hubbell - Explore Scientific VP Engineering
 

On Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 12:21 PM, ACorkill wrote:
Maybe you can do a quick poll and see how many people would buy a hand controller if you made one. 
We already offer a mount with a traditional hand controller

https://explorescientificusa.com/products/fl-exos-2-goto-eq-mount
 
--
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!


Re: User Manual for Android version of ExploreStars? #ExploreStars #Android #VIDEO

Harry
 

Hi All,
When I used ExploreStars for scope movement, I found using the “compass rose” as an easier alternative to the up/down/left/right buttons.
With just a little practice, you can keep your finger on the center of the rose, and move the scope, without removing your finger or your eye from the eyepiece. It also functions in a slower/faster rate depending on finger movements.

FYI, Harry

--
Harry
Vero Beach, FL

Mounts: ES iExos 100-PMC Eight
Scopes: ES  ED80CF, ES AR102,  Meade ETX 90 EC (Deforked)
Guide: ZWO 30mm Mini, ZWO ASI120MM-Mini
Software: ASIair Pro, iPad Pro, MacOS, Starry Sky Stacker, Affinity Photo, Lightroom,  SkySafari Plus
Cameras: Nikon D600, D5500
Misc: ES USB Power Bank, Rigel QuikFinder, 0.8x Focal Reducer
Filters:  Optolong L-Pro, L-eNhance


Re: User Manual for Android version of ExploreStars? #ExploreStars #Android #VIDEO

ACorkill
 

Hi All,

I will also purchase a hand controller if you want to make one. I'm doing visual astronomy. It is really a necessity for slewing around the moon and other objects. The iPad controls force you to take your eye off the eyepiece to slew. It does get tiring.

Maybe you can do a quick poll and see how many people would buy a hand controller if you made one. 

Thanks,
Andrew
--
Main Telescope: Explore Scientific 152ED APO Refractor in Carbon Fiber
Mount: Explore Scientific EXOS2-GT Equatorial
Other Scopes: Meade 8"LX90 SCT, William Optics 66mm APO Refractor
Binoculars: Oberwerk 20x80 & 25x100 Giant Binoculars, Alpen 8x56


Re: User Manual for Android version of ExploreStars? #ExploreStars #Android #VIDEO

Paul Mogg
 

Thank you for your quick and honest reply Jerry, I will check out that video.

While I'm here I just wanted to say that I'm very happy with my new purchase of an EXOS 2 mount, the hardware is obviously extremely good value for the money, and a high quality product. I was blown away last night by my first views of the Andromeda Galaxy with my own eyes, a moving experience, and the mount slewed to it perfectly for me after I did a careful Polar Alignment, and "1 star alignment" on Mars using the Sync button.

The ExploreStars software is also very good and I love the graphical user interface. I just now (finally) found out through someone else's post that you can go to the Main Menu /Catalog/  DURING the Alignment process to pick any star that is above the horizon, This is an indespensible  feature for a beginner like me who has only learned a few constellations so far, ...but I only found out about it by doing a lot of searching, the App itself gives no clue that this is possible. I will now try again tonight to do a 2 and 3 star alignment using this.

The lack of an up to-date-user manual for the software is a big frustration for a beginner. I don't like having to spend my day hunting through forums and videos for information that could be presented in a few simple sentences by the developers. With the mount itself I received a printed user manual in German ( that unfortunately I don't speak ) and another user manual that gave instructions for the Windows version of Explorestars only, which works quite differently to the Android version in many respects.

I'd also like to make the suggestion that you enable the ability to attach some kind of simplified, wired, hand controller, just for slewing manually and aligning, to be used in conjunction with the software. The Tablet controls DO NOT replace the tactile nature of a hand controllers' buttons ( IMHO ), that you can continue to look through your eyepiece while using, rather than having to look away and find the right button to press on the tablet. I think you could sell a few of those, and I'd be your first customer.

I hope you take my crtitique as being from someone who would only like to see a really good product further improved.

Best regards,

Paul Mogg


Explore Stars hung up on "Please Wait" #ExploreStars #EXOS2

ttanquary@juno.com <ttanquary@...>
 

Hello Everyone.
I recently purchased the EXOS 2GT with Pmc-8 and have been experimenting with it for around a week.   I'm using  Windows 10 on a MacBook with Parallels. I'm connected to the PMC-8 via wifi on the Mac.  When I open Explore Stars, I am stuck with the message "Please Wait" on the left side.  I am able to slew the mount and utilize the database align and slew to objects ( though not accurately).   I've read through the forums and see that the "Please Wait" is typically a connection issue, but If I was not connected I would not be able to slew the mount.  Also, on the windows 10 side, I am able to successfully ping the mount using Ipconfig.  Are there any other reasons why the "Please Wait" notification never goes away?


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

Jerry Hubbell - Explore Scientific VP Engineering
 

Thanks Wes,

I was frustrated because groups.io scales the image down due to the restrictions on image sizes allowed (I set the limit). I added a link to my OneDrive to download the full sized image. Hopefully everyone can get to it.
--
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!


Photo Moon_08_09_combined1_labeled1.png uploaded #photo-notice

MAIN@ESPMC-Eight.groups.io Notification <noreply@...>
 

The following photos have been uploaded to the Explore Scientific album of the MAIN@ESPMC-Eight.groups.io group.

By: Jerry Hubbell - Explore Scientific VP Engineering

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