Starizona Micro Touch Auto Focuser - Temperature Sensor


#1

I’m using the above device from Starizona for my auto focusing. It’s a well made product and I’m very satisfied with its performance. There is however one thing that stands out (to me) that I believe needs correcting.
SGPro reads the temperature reported by the Starizona hand controller and then all focus temperature actions are predicated on those values.
OK, since many of the temperature actions are based on relative values rather than absolute values. And that’s what I get since the Starizona hand controller’s temp over the evening will go up while the ambient is going down. The electronics heat the sensor.
My gut tells me that a better setup would be to use the TemperHum mounted away from the equipment and reporting more accurately the OBS’ ambient temp.
I don’t see much (hardly any) chatter on the TemperHum device, so I’m looking for some advice on switching that direction.
Thanks,
Mark


#2

The Temperhum was popular 12-18 months ago when there was a specific model people could buy. Support quickly waned when people realized there were multiple versions with different data formats… I think for the most part SGP is trying to wean people away from them.

What is the problem with your sensor? Maybe a request to update the ASCOM driver to provide the data required or a feature request to SGP is the way to go.


#3

I have the self same issue with the Microtouch control box. It warms the sensor. I went the TemperHum route. The issue with the TemperHum device appears to be one of the offset rather than the gain - Jared said he would put in a simple offset adjustment control in the next major release of SGP. He confirmed himself with his two devices - reading 30C apart!

These things are cheap - I wonder if there is any distinguishing mark on the TemperHum to set them apart and I’ll simply order the one that works today.


#4

Hi Buzz and Mads,

I used a mechanical industrial analogue temperature gage, placed away from the electronics, to see how much temp differential occurred between it and the Starizona handset. I found there to be about a 15 minute warmup period for the handset once it was turned on.
After that the two devices agreed very well through the whole night. Not what I was expecting!
Starizona’s literature talks about its handset electronics and how theirs would read higher than ambient, so i just took them at their word. But I did not find this to be true last night. Starizona even has an offset feature in their software to compensate for this problem.
Weather permitting, i’ll give this another go tonight and see if the results remain the same. And if so, it would make moot my original post.

Thanks,

Mark


#5

thanks for that - my particular Starizona unit is embedded in a custom built master interface enclosure and so the Temperhum is an ideal way to measure external temperature. I’m writing to Temperhum to find out the different versions.


#6

I’d be interested to hear if you get a reply back and what they have to say. From what we can tell there is really no way to discern their hardware. The main thing we see is that one reads 40C off from the other.

Jared


#7

Jared, I have not ignored you - just that PC Sensor have not replied to (2) emails now. I guess you were getting the same lack of response.I think your earlier suggestion to simply put in a temp adjustment feature in 2.4 is the easiest way around.


#8

Hi Buzz,

Are you currently running a temperhum device?
I just got a PcSensor version and am having some difficulty.

  1. Vendor Furnished software allows unit to run on my desktop, and provide relevant information
  2. SGPro sees the device and provides formatting info to the SGPro graph, but no data.

Any suggestions?

Mark


#9

Mark, I am not using the TemperHum right now. I am using the sensor inside the focuser module. I did get my Temperhum to read out in SGP but the temperature was completely wrong (in offset, not scale). I do recall I had to reboot after loading the driver to get it to work. If you read the other threads, it appears that there are two distinct versions which look identical but have different readings. I think V2.4 of SGP will allow some kind of manual calibration. PCSensor have not replied to repeated requests for information.


#10

FWIW,
the Drop Box link shows the following.

  1. TemperHUM connected to computer using PC Sensor’s V24.4.5 software (this works).
  2. TemperHUM connected to computer using SGPro software v2.3.15.2568 (no data).
  3. TemperHUM image

I do not think the TemperHUM to SGPro is a scale issue. There appears to be no data coming through, as opposed to the data being mis-scaled.

Mark


#11

Mark - I went back to the install CD (V2.21) and SGP reads the device OK and displays it on a graph in SGP. The trace goes up and down when I hold the sensor.

There were two devices it seems - one clad in shiny metal and another in blue. Mine is the shiny metal version.


#12

Hi Buzz, thanks for the update.

As I had mentioned, my TemperHUM produces accurate (?) temp and humidity curves using PCSensor’s v24.4.5 software that came on the disc. But SGP’s graph does not produce any data (see my earlier dropbox attachment). This is true whether the PCSensor program is running or not.

I downloaded a copy of PCSensor’s v22.1 (see item18 on web attatchment below) from their web site. This time the PCSensor graph reported “overflow” and would not produce data. Also SGP’s graph was empty of data just like before.

My TemperHUM device is the silver type that you described (see item18 in below web site attachment).
http://www.pcsensor.com/index.php?_a=document&doc_id=6

Thanks again,

Mark


#13

Update : I have just loaded 2.4 beta and my Temperhum (which previously was reading -17C in the summer) appears to be reading sensible temperature values now.

Thanks to Jared and Ken.


#14

Buzz,

How has this been working? I can’t rely on my microtouch temp because of the enclosure it is in. I was considering a temperhum or possibly making a feature request to have get/set temp values in the API so I coukd write my own.

Thanks!
Brian


#15

Hi Brian - I am using my Microtouch sensor most of the time, or the Lakeside one on the motor - the Microtouch sensor is actually poking through the box, so it is not too bad. The TemperHum is TemperMental and I could not recommend it. I bought a second one as the first was touch and go. I did not work at all and I had to send it straight back, had to get eBay to intervene as the Chinese importer did not want to know. PCSensor’s software crashes in Win 7 immediately. It is trash. Shame we cannot find something more reliable and at a similar cost.

(The latest version from Starlight is the Focus Boss - it has an external sensor option.) It might be a Christmas present to myself.


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