Paramount and 10micron SGpro suitability


#21

Yes Sara you can. Plenty of folk do to, especially if they have a long FL scope :grinning:.


#22

What Barry said, but if you are having to do that then it negates a large part of the point of having one I would have thought.


#23

This seems distinctly unimpressive to me. Uncommanded power failures are a fact of life with hardware in the field and if this is a problem expecting the user to manage this doesn’t seem right.


#24

Who knows whether or not there would be any damage, but that is what I was told. We have two levels of power outage detection in Spain. Firstly, we do not plug our Cloudwatcher into the UPS, so if there is a power outage, the CW goes down, SGP gets no signal from it, and so it goes ‘UNSAFE’, thus triggering parking of mount, roof closure, etc. Secondly, (and this is from Jaime at Lunatico), just a simple relay, powered by an old mobile phone charger. If the power is cut, then the relay opens and our Dragonfly unit sensor triggers.

All you need to do then is find a way to power down the mount … and then check that it has powered down. It seems that around 1 in 20 times it doesn’t shut down when triggered to do so, and a second ‘shutdown’ command/signal has to be sent.

You do have to spend a chunk of time making sure that your scripts do everything that they are supposed to do, in the right order and so on.

I’m not sure how sensitive other premium mounts are to a power outage (my Mesu couldn’t care less) or what level of protection is bult into such mounts.

As you say, outages are inevitable. Round my way, we occasionally get power cuts when there is stormy weather. You’d certainly want to make sure that everything was shut up safe and sound before any cumulonimbus came around.


#25

Hi Chris,

I have a MyT mount and I am having trouble connecting it to SG Pro. Can you help with the steps you used to connect your MX+. I have the Ascom driver downloaded and installed from the Bisque site, and am able to select it from SG Pro. However when I try to connect I get a message that the SkyX is not enabled for scripting.

Thanks,
Khushrow


#26

First, do you have TheSkyX running and connected to the mount? All Paramounts must have it running, even if you aren’t using it. It provides the connection from the ASCOM driver to the mount. Here’s how I have the driver configured for my MX+:

Image44

Chris


#27

Thanks fo all the great comments on this post it really helps me and others. Just to clarify my stance on choice it is going to be a Paramount Myt . Which has been re-enforced with the recent comments. It would be nice if somone could post a video on YouTube to help other people like myself on setting up a paramount to work with Sgpro. I’m surprised no one has done this already

Thanks once again to all those taking time to help others , it’s really appreciated :+1::+1::+1::clap::clap::clap::clap:


#28

The statement about a power outage damaging the 10u is outright WRONG, along with some other things stated by gnomus. What he may be referring to is a practice called hot plugging on pages 24, and 28 of the 10u manual. That is a practice that many mount manufacturers discourage, including AP and sb. Gnomus, you might want to talk with Barry about this, since you state that you are uncomfortable with the mounts’ operation. Not a fanboy of 10u, they have their faults, but please get your facts straight.

I’ve had several power outages with the 10u and never been a problem with restart once power is restored. The mount stays in position and will not crash into the pier. A back up ps is always a good idea though.

I like the 10u mount, but not the guy I bought it from. ( There are 3 other vendors of these mounts, just be aware of the troller). It has performed flawlessly for going on 3 years.

I have a 2127mm idk and the tak fsq 106 ( piggy back on a 2000). Unguided for the tak at 30 min. is never a problem and I do it routinely. Once you start getting above 1000mm f/l, things can get nebulous with unguided. It is largely dependent on seeing conditions in your area. I have gone unguided with 2127mm for 20-25 min on good evenings, but it’s not worth the risk, so I guide that baby.

SGP works flawlessly with 10u and phd2 for pier flips, ect. Much better than brandx and maxim. Stay away from maxim version 6, especially if you are using a hub.

I will say that I am concerned with customer service and 10u. Being european made, expect lots of vacation time during the year. So my experience with 10u has been bittersweet due to the vendor and forum waits. If I had to do it all over again, I would probably go with AP ( I’ve had three of their mounts with no bs customer service in the good ole USA ). Tolga is a good vendor for the mounts that you are considering. He’ll be there for you, even at night.

Lastly, the current euro to $ exchange rate is significant. Last time I looked, it was close to a 25% premium for euro goods. If you buy US, you’re essentially saving yourself 20-25% on an apples to apples product. Great for them, not so great for you.


#29

Thanks for the clarification. The cable mentioned in the manual not to be disconnected is the one that goes from the electronics box to the mount, NOT the power supply cable. That’s reasonable.


#30

Hi Gunny
I am sure you are correct, but, as I said at the outset, I got this info from 10 Micron.
This is my question from 12 July 2017:


2.The mount will be connected to a UPS but I want to be able to trigger a safe remote shut down in the event of a power cut. I can use my imaging software (SGP) to send a park command to the mount if my cloudwatcher loses power, but I would still need to then remotely power down the mount. I have a Dragonfly relay unit and have set this up to detect power cuts, This can then trigger various scripts to run which could include sending a pulse via a relay.in order to shudown the mount and then after delay cut the power supply. My concern is what would happen in the event that the mount has power but has not been switched on, in that scenario the power cut detection sensor on the Dragonfly would trigger a pulse which would start the mount up this would then be followed by a loss of power - I assume that this scenario could be harmful to the control unit. Is there a way of avoiding this scenario?
No, way to avoid this power ON in this scenario. And yes, this scenario could be harmful to the control unit because the uncontrolled power cut off.

Best Regards

Ivan Mariotti
10Micron Team
www.10micron.com

So, as you can see, I did at least try to get my facts straight.


#31

I agree with you Gnomus as I thought that we were talking about “hot plugging.” Not being familiar with the dragonfly and having experienced power outages without ill effect to the mount, I admit your situation is unique. I’m not using a relay set up and before I got a ups, power outages were not a problem for the mount. I’m only 150ft from my mount, not the hundreds of miles that you and Barry are from your remote site.
Per Frejvall had his own relay system for the 10u: http://blueastro.se/indexe5cc.html?id=20. Since his death, I’m not sure these are still being sold. Bluestick is being sold by Baader. Maybe Ivan could comment on that unit and its availibility.


#32

There are a few ways of swiching the 10 Micron on and off. The Dragonfly can be used to send a pulse to the control unit. Then there is Thomas Acker’s ‘Bootmount’. The latest version of MountWizzard can be used to boot up/shutdown the mount. And then, of course, you can get into scripting and sending direct commands to it. I haven’t used the device you link to but have played around with all of the above methods.


#33

Mark… check out digitalastrophotography.co.uk. Chris Woodhouse setup videos

Roy


#34

Thank you for that, I’m surprised Buzz didn’t mention it seeing as it’s his site :joy::joy:. Just gone to order my myt and they’re out of stock :see_no_evil:. It’s going to be a long couple of months wait now . It’s like being a kid again waiting for Christmas :flushed::joy::joy::joy:


#35

Mark… I got my MyT a few months ago. I started out learning theskyx, and then tried LTI for automation. I really wanted to use my mac. I really liked SGP and Phd2, and a couple of weeks ago went back to windows (yuck!). Chris’s video really hepled. Good luck.

Roy


#36

Thanks for that Roy, yes I thought they were good too. How are you finding the myt. The only thing that’s worrying me now is I’ve sold my Avalon to fund my Myt but having watched Chris’s videos on set up I noticed the stars appeared to be egg shaped after 5 mins with a 200mm FL. I hope I haven’t made a mistake as that’s the same FL I want to image at . I hope Chris ( Buzz) can clarify this.
Also, I thought the idea of Tpoint was so you could get 20-30 min exposures unguided. So if you’re doing 10-15 min exposures then you wouldn’t need to guide. Otherwise surely PhD and Tpoint will be fighting each other …I’m now confused and starting to think I’ve made a big mistake :see_no_evil::frowning:️:frowning:️

Also what’s LTI ? I know it must be obvious but I just can’t think what it stands for


#37

I really doubt that you will ever achieve 20-30 min. unguided with the myt. That kind of performance falls in the realm of the 10u mounts and perhaps asa. There is a lot of hype when it comes to unguided performance in various mounts. The best I’ve heard of with paramount for average seeing conditions is 10-15min. and that is with a good model. If your are fortunate enough to live in an area with pristine seeing, that will really help.

I own a 10u mount and unguided performance is phenomenal for the Midwest. 30 min+ unguided is routine for my 500mm tak scope. But despite all of the hyperbole from the vendor whom I bought it from, there are limitations to its unguided performance. Once your start to get above 1000mm f/l and >, unguided performance will degrade. The best I was able to do with a 2127mm iDK was 20-25 min. and that was an extremely good night. For that scope I always use guiding with an ONAG. and phd2.

Don’t make the mistake of buying add on encoders, it’s a complete waste of money for the guy with average seeing conditions. Just ask George at APhysics. I had one of their 1600 mounts and was considering the add ons. He discouraged it and said it was only for locations with good seeing.

Models are extremely important for unguided performance. Don’t discount them.

I’m not a fan of sb, but with the right vendor, you should have no problems. Just make sure you adjust your expectations with regard to performance. If someone told you that you will achieve 20-30 min unguided with the myt, they’re blowing smoke. Also, be aware that if you go to sell the myt down the road, the buyer will be forced to repurchase the software rights to operate the mount. One of many reasons I didn’t even consider the paramount line and it is my guess that they still continue this practice.

The guy who sold me the 10u told me that my larger scope would have no problem doing unguided imaging at 20-30 minutes. That along with saying that the mount had a telemetry connnection, whereby 10u would be able to run diagnostics was an outright lie. I have an email from 10u stating that there is no telemetry involved. When I pointed out to the vendor that I was not getting the performance that he stated, he immediately blamed my scope ( which he sells and told me there would be no problem ) and said that I need to go with a German import to get that kind of performance! A friend of mine bought one of those scope and was disappointed and last I heard he was still trying to sell the $30K scope.

I tell you all of this, because so many fall victim to false claims in this hobby. With the money that you are spending, you need to know where potential problems are. What works and what doesn’t. I’ve thrown away a lot of money for astro products that just did not work.

Since you seem to be having second thoughts about your purchase, it’s not too late to cancel or at least talk with a vendor that knows these mounts to confirm what I have said. Lots of fan boys out there and few are willing to strip away the hyperbole…Gunny


#38

I don’t have egg-shaped stars! Where is that? Was it a galaxy :slight_smile:?
I do use TPoint and I can get away with unguided exposures if I pay close attention to the environmental parameters and so on. Unlike some, I do not see it as a goal though and I use TPoint to do 80% of the tracking work, mopping up the 20% with easy guiding. I’m currently using a Tak85 at 330mm FL and issuing guiding corrections every 10 seconds. My RMS guiding error is 0.25 arc seconds - basically less than seeing conditions. I cannot measure the backlash on my Paramount, it’s that small. I don’t see any evidence of it in the DEC guiding trace. Running PHD without TPoint gives slightly worse tracking, which is good evidence to support the assertion that PhD and TPoint do not fight each other. From that, I assume that the two systems are independent, in a pipeline, rather than the closed-loop system in a 10Micron, where the guiding input is inserted into the control loop.

[update] - I have just seen Gunny’s note and agree with most of the views there. At one time I was one of those that tried to strip away the hype around the early 10Microns and it polarized the community. Just because a particular piece of equipment is fantastic for one person, it does not imply it is for everyone else. Manufacturing variability, software interactions and a whole host of system issues cause each user to have a unique experience and in some cases, very real issues caused by design robustness. Then, the response of the OEM is what counts. At the time, I had a similar rebuff to Gunny and that my model issues were caused by the crappy focuser I was using (a 3.5" motorized Feathertouch). The same scope achieves 4" RMS pointing error with TSX and the MX.
Just remember, both 10Micron and Paramount owners get excellent results, proving the capability of their different designs. There will be variations in each case and the trick is to work out whether it is caused by the mount or other factors.


#39

Aha - got it… it is a 2000mm FL RCT without a field flattener - the stars were not perfectly collimated and looking at the video - the guiding was not that great either due to some light cloud passing over.


#40

Thanks Buzz,

Your rms guiding error is very good and it goes to prove the point that the myt can do a good job in the right hands. Good customer service is 90% of the game with new equipment and that is why it is so important to find a good vendor that is knowledgeable of the wares the he sells.

I really don’t care if my views polarize and I can back up what I’m saying. This stuff costs too much and if it isn’t right, people can use that information and make their own decisions. One example where I didn’t express concerns was when I got back into the hobby in 2014. I received two sets of astrodon filters that were filthy and the nb 50mm filters looked to be second hand and wrapped in tissue paper. Filter holders and box labels were missing along with the filth. I kept my mouth shut. For the past few months there has been a rash of complaints: https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/595646-astrodon-filters/. I even spoke to Don recently and was given a total bs story. Polarizing or not, people need the information to make an informed decision.


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