Android for ExploreStars and Windows for ASCOM?


Hi Everyone - nub here...
Just received my EXOS 2 mount, but have yet to load the any software for it until I understand the future implications of loading one software App platform versus another.
I was planning on loading the Android ExploreStars App onto my new Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10, but I know that I will eventually want move to AP using a guide camera w/PHD2 with maybe some planetarium software. The question is: Can the PMC-Eight controller use both the Android App for ExploreStars and Windows for ASCOM drivers simultaneously? Concern is once I load the Android App software, am I stuck with it? Or said another way; does it hard code some info/software into the PMC controller that will later mess up with loading a Win 10 ASCOM type software? If not, can the Android be wireless and the ASCOM Serial port connected at the same time?
Any help or recommendations with this is appreciated!

Wes Mcdonald


Glad to have you aboard!

The apps and the firmware are not coupled so as to mess one up if you previously used the other.  The only caveat is you have to get the mount into certain communication method modes depending on what you are using.  But go ahead and load the Tab A and use it by all means.  Then load Explorestars on the PC and use it  (one at a time only).  No worries.

But to your other question.  Explorestars will work or wired ASCOM will work, or WiFi ASCOM will work but only one at a time.  You cannot share the PMC-8 controller.  Only one can run the mount.  There are creative ways to mix and match stuff, but in the end, if you are sending mount commands, only one mode or control is supported at any one time.

Lots of this is all over theplace in the forum, and some probably in the FAQs, and some in the Knowledge Base.  Also some in the Programmers Reference MAnual, which is a collection of facts covering many things, not really software and some of it helpful to you.

And of course the Forum members usually get back to you with answers to your questions in fine shape.  Lots of help out here.

You are going to find out that the PMC-8 is quite the value given its performance for the cost.  It does however put in the driver's seat -- meaning you don't just turn it on.  There will be some learning of its ways, which in the process you will learn a lot about telescope mounts, astronomy, and related topics that will serve you well as you progress through the hobby.  But expect to put in some work.

Once again welcome to the hobby and the forum.  Be sure to fill out your signature in the area, and I believe you need to do so in each subgroup (sorry, I didn't write the code).  


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


Thanks so much for the reply!
I've been reading quite a bit today on forum questions/answers about the question I had (I didn't use the right search words yesterday!). It appears there are multiple ways of doing things with WiFi vs.Serial with quite a few different results from users. I will start with the Android Tab A and see where it takes me.
- Thanks again!