Thank you for posting your imaging experiences from Uganda. It's quite riveting to read about the challenges of pursuing our hobby from the Equator and to follow your progress with the Nano-PC as well.
I have a CEM25 and an ASI1600 Pro as well, which I use in summer from 10,500 feet elevation at a mountain cabin without electricity or internet connections. Your tropical experiences are surprisingly analogous to mine, though I bet my fingers are colder even though I have a much easier time with polar alignment!
Always enjoy your posts.
I LOVE the movie, and the moon moving across the stars. I only got two stars because my focal length was a bit longer.
Nice rig! Two questions:
1) Is that a Samyang/Rokinon 135 lens?
2) Did you 3D print those tube rings?
Trying to use PHD2 to guide Paramount MyT under Ubuntu 18.04, KStars 3.0.0.
Of course I have TheSkyX running first, with IP server port 3040.
INDI and Ekos can then see and control the mount, slew, image, etc.
But I can't get PHD2 to connect to the mount at all, either through INDI or through AUX Mount (ports 7624 and 3040).
All I get is a "connection timeout" message, and then "Failed to connect to mount."
Also, I'm trying to guide using "Direct Guide" not relays on the mount.
Perhaps I'm confused as to whether PHD2 is controlling the mount via Ekos/INDI (port 7624), or via port 3040 to TheSkyX, or both?
Can anybody help with this?
FYI I used the Polar Alignment Tool three nights ago in Ekos 2.9.8 and it worked like a charm.
I regularly guide using PHD in Ekos with everything connected via INDI, but have never tried the PHD polar alignment tool.
@stash helped me with a very similar problem a few weeks ago, this advice is exactly right.
Use "verbose" option, adjust "downscaling" to keep "extracted stars" to around 100-200, and manage index files to just the appropriate scale for your rig.
WISH LIST: make these adjustments automatically!
I can be TAUGHT to manage image scale/index files and downscaling/extracted stars, because the algorithms are pretty simple. Therefore they should be in code instead of being passed down in the forum.
The image scale only needs to be determined once per session, then the algorithm should never use inappropriate index files again.
Downscaling is more dynamic. Images in rich Milky Way fields need more downscaling than those near the galactic poles. But solve-field provides plenty of feedback, which should be used to tweak the downscaling parameter on the next attempt.
In the meantime, we can turn on verbose output and watch intently as the "extracted stars" text scrolls by, then hit "Stop, then go into the Options tab to change the Downscaling parameter, then click "Solve and Sync" again and again until we get a good result.
Thankfully KStars internal guider calibrates very quickly, so it's not a big deal to repeat this procedure.
But a better approach is to use the declination and side-of-pier to calculate guiding adjustments, so that the calibration remains valid all over the sky. Just as with PHD, PHD2, TheSkyX, or MaxIM DL, it's unnecessary to calibrate for a specific target.
Rather, calibration provides the orientation of the guide camera and guider image pixel scale relative to the sky. The rest of the guide pulse calculation is precisely deterministic from the declination and pier side.
There's no reason to calibrate again unless you either (1) change out equipment -- mount, guide scope, camera; or (2) forget the declination and side-of-pier where calibration was performed. Unfortunately it appears that the KStars guider does the latter every time!