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BY EOS with Astro Tortilla and ST-4


ifxbonz
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Hi my name is Andy FYI: I saw your 2 hr video on BY eos with the ascom people, thank you and very informative. The software looks great. can't wait to try it in the field.

Backyars eos will be my software of choice based on using my canon dslr, however I do own a Sony A7r4 which I also plan to use as a mirrorless full frame imaging platform. By chance will you ever be releasing a Sony version of BY eos?

But I do have a question that I can't find the answer to and I'm hoping you can answer for me.  I'm new to astro photography, (totally new) and my question isn't so much a Backyard eos question but an ST-4 question as to related to Astro Tortilla. I'm going to be running an Skyguider pro by Ioptron and I will be using an off axis guider with an ZWO ASI 290mini as my guide camera. But Skyguider only uses ST-4, not Ascom. Can this be accomplished while using Astro Tortilla and Backyard eos with ST-4?  If so how?

Andy

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Guiding and pointing are two separate operations. First you point the scope, with AstroTortilla, then you enable guiding with your tool of choice. BYE does dithering between images with PHD2 or MetaGuide. It does not inter-operate with Skyguider for dithering. PHD2 can adjust the mount either through the guide camera via ST-4 or directly to the telescope via ASCOM, as long as the telescope supports PulseGuiding.

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50 minutes ago, ifxbonz said:

Hi my name is Andy FYI: I saw your 2 hr video on BY eos with the ascom people, thank you and very informative. The software looks great. can't wait to try it in the field.

Backyars eos will be my software of choice based on using my canon dslr, however I do own a Sony A7r4 which I also plan to use as a mirrorless full frame imaging platform. By chance will you ever be releasing a Sony version of BY eos?

But I do have a question that I can't find the answer to and I'm hoping you can answer for me.  I'm new to astro photography, (totally new) and my question isn't so much a Backyard eos question but an ST-4 question as to related to Astro Tortilla. I'm going to be running an Skyguider pro by Ioptron and I will be using an off axis guider with an ZWO ASI 290mini as my guide camera. But Skyguider only uses ST-4, not Ascom. Can this be accomplished while using Astro Tortilla and Backyard eos with ST-4?  If so how?

Andy

There no plans to support Sony.  They don't even have an SDK that allows remote operation on the camera... but perhaps the real reason is demand; the effort required simply outweighs demand at this time.

Looks like you're only starting out.  My advice is baby steps.  Forget about plate solving (AstroTortilla) until you have mastered controlling your camera and mount.... then you add auto guiding... only then you should consider other components such as plate solvers.

Welcome to astrophotography, it's an awesome hobby.

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13 hours ago, astroman133 said:

Guiding and pointing are two separate operations. First you point the scope, with AstroTortilla, then you enable guiding with your tool of choice. BYE does dithering between images with PHD2 or MetaGuide. It does not inter-operate with Skyguider for dithering. PHD2 can adjust the mount either through the guide camera via ST-4 or directly to the telescope via ASCOM, as long as the telescope supports PulseGuiding.

The skyguider  pro version that I have has an ipolar polar alignment tool built in that connects to my LapTop via usb. the scope I will have is a Stellarvue svx70mm APO triplet that will have an off axis guider on it with  a ZWO ASI290 mini camera for guiding via PHD I'm assuming. The SkyGuider mount is ST-4 "not Ascom capable" My camers will be Canon 5dmk4 connected vis Backyard eos. I'm asuming the information that Astro Tortilla needs comes from the guiding camera, that will be connected in t places one to the guider via ST-4 data cable and the other port on the ASI290 camera attaching to the laptop via usb working through PHD and BYE and AT. I'm tryint to wrap my head around all the connections and weather it will work with ST-4 and the softwares mentioned.

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AstroTortilla (and other Plate Solvers) require ASCOM in order to perform their "GOTO"/"Sync" functions.  They have to tell the Mount "Where" to Slew-To via the ASCOM System. 

ST-4 is simply an old-school Electrical Connection, where the Camera gets the Mount to Slew for in a specific direction by asserting a Voltage along the ST-4 Wire for a certain number of Milliseconds.  There is no way to communicate sophisticated data such as Coordinates along an ST-4 Connection.

The SkyGuider would have another issue that would defeat AstroTortilla - it is only motorized in the RA Axis (any Slew required in Declination would need to be performed By-Hand - which has nowhere near the Accuracy needed for an Astronomical GOTO Slew).

I have the SkyWatcher Star Adventurer Pro equivalent Tracking Mount - in all honesty you are coming very close to Overloading your SkyGuider with your SVX70 and the Camera(s).

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Similarly, because the SkyGuider is an RA-Only Tracking Mount, any AutoGuiding will Only be performed in that one RA Axis.  Any Drift in Dec will go uncorrected.

This isn't to say that attempting AutoGuiding is worthless.  Rather, you will likely need to perform Drift Alignment as well as simply the iPolar "Rough" Polar Alignment.

The SkyGuider, like the Star Adventurer Pro, DOES benefit from AutoGuiding in RA-Only.  These Mounts have significant PEC issues that AutoGuiding can overcome.

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4 hours ago, s3igell said:

Similarly, because the SkyGuider is an RA-Only Tracking Mount, any AutoGuiding will Only be performed in that one RA Axis.  Any Drift in Dec will go uncorrected.

This isn't to say that attempting AutoGuiding is worthless.  Rather, you will likely need to perform Drift Alignment as well as simply the iPolar "Rough" Polar Alignment.

The SkyGuider, like the Star Adventurer Pro, DOES benefit from AutoGuiding in RA-Only.  These Mounts have significant PEC issues that AutoGuiding can overcome.

SInce I'm just getting started DSLR  is my starting point next step in a year or so will be ZWO camera types I realize i'm close to weight limits hence the OAG in the train. As for guiding I know I have seen others guide plus using PHD  with the Skyguider pro I just don't know the limits or even the how to's or to what extent at this point. I'm also aware of the ra only and declination will need to be found manually at the start of a guiding session. Any guidance from experienced astro people like yourself is always appreciated. The one or two videos that I found show its possible but no one goes into the specifics of setting it up in any detail.

Andy

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Andy,

Not only will declination need to be found manually at the start of a imaging session, but declination will need to be re-adjusted periodically during an exposure plan. This is because polar misalignment causes the field of view to drift in dec. 

In any case, you should post questions about autoguiding your SkyGuider via PHD2 with either or both the PHD2 support group and the iOptron SkyGuider support group. BYE's only overlap with autoguiding is providing a means to dither the field of view between exposures. BYE can also be configured to provide AstroTortilla with images for plate solving, however since the SkyGuider cannot slew in declination, it would seem that this cannot be done automatically. Again, a group that supports the SkyGuider may be able to provide advice.

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