iOptron CEM70 support

Questions, bug reports, requests for enhancements, etc.
Ard
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2020 7:26 am

iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Ard »

Hi,

I am trying to get my new iOptron CEM70 to work with your products. It seems that there is a new INDI driver version out, version 3, that should support it. If I am correct, this version is not yet part of the INDIGO Server driverset (seems to be version 2.0.0.17 at this moment). The current driver seems to be able to communicate with he mount, but not drive it correctly, as - for example - I can not slew the mount via AstroTelescope.
Also, the log states that the mount is unknown ("Unknown mount '0070'").
I also see error messages like "indigo_mount_ioptron[mount_change_property:840, 0x700000f6f2000]: :St+51*28:05# failed"

Is it correct that you INDIGO Server (and other Cloudmakers product) are not yet able to work with the CEM70? And is this something you could look into, perhaps by including V3 drivers for iOptron)?

If the software should already be able to drive the CEM70, I must be doing something wrong myself...
Perhaps someone else already got the CEM70 working on OSX (High Sierra)?

Thanks!

Ard
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Peter Polakovic
Posts: 2696
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2016 9:38 am

Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Peter Polakovic »

Hi Ard,

INDI and INDIGO are completely unrelated, there are no INDI drivers inside INDIGO server.

CEM70 is really not supported with the most current INDIGO iOptron driver, but I'll update it just now and include in the next AstroTelescope build.

Regards, Peter
Ard
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2020 7:26 am

Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Ard »

Hi Peter,

Didn't know that. But thanks a lot for including the driver! I hope this helps and will let you know.

Kind regards,

Ard
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Peter Polakovic
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Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2016 9:38 am

Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Peter Polakovic »

Pls. can you try this one?

http://download.cloudmakers.eu/AstroTel ... 15_541.dmg

Remember to "register" AT if you purchased it on AppStore to create permanent license for copies downloaded from our web.

Thank you, Peter
Jay
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2021 8:00 pm

Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Jay »

Hello,
I thought I would add to this topic as I am a new member and learning. This has been my experience with CEM70G with AstroGuider and Apple MacBook pro 15". I had some success with iPolar but iGuider is presenting a serious challenge. I am so new I didn't know what to expect and when I got a pure green screen I figured there was an error of sorts so I tried to manually focus iGuider with it's very crude mechanism and had poor results. See below: and the letter I sent iOptron. I am confused because the bit of success I had was encouraging but the iOptron answer back to me was that iGuider will not work with Apple. Clearly there is some function and I am wondering if anyone here would have had similar issues or a suggestion to achieve proper performance. Thanks in Advance.

Dear iOptron
Hello Again,
I have owned the CEM70G for a few months now and as a beginner, I recognize the steep learning curve and I am taking things slowly. That said I have had some success and I am mostly happy with it. I found software that worked with my existing computer, a 6 yr old MacBook Pro 15”. So I am using Sky Safari 6 Pro and successfully got the wifi and got to functions to work with it! Not easy or intuitive for me as a novice, but it is done. Next I loaded AstroGuider. I enjoy AP and thought I should up my game by guiding. I have had many frustrations again mostly with my self and the learning curve. Also Astro Guider came out with a new version in the middle of me learning about it, which might have thrown me off. Long story short, I got it going and I think some very crude crude guiding.

My question to you is about the iGuider scope. Focusing it seems almost impossible. My results are so crude and not like what I would expect. I followed the directions about loosening the set screw and then the lock screw and moving/sliding the unit fore and aft in the housing. Seems to require such a fine touch to get any image at all, and mine is really bad. Initially a bright pure Green screen. then: See picture below after a LOT of trying and some black level adjustments. Is that what I should be getting? The vertical noise/distortion seems electrical? to me. Have you seen this phenomenon/problem related to your other iGuider products? Any advise would be appreciated. Also the tracking error error seems to be far greater than the capability of the mount at the advertised 3.5” max PEC. What should I be doing to get max performance out of the mount? I have a very light payload, could that be a problem? It is still properly balanced. I was successful with iPolar and PA is excellent. The placement is pristine on a level rock solid pad, etc. I recorded the worm gear PEC into the handset/mount. I will confirm PEC Playback on in my next session.

Thanks in advance! I am looking for a little help to see if I am on the right track and what my expectations should be without getting too wrapped up in a forum discussion that is way over my head. My fear is damaging my new and exciting instrument. Thanks Again.
Sincerely,

Their Reply:Dear,

Thank you for choosing iOptron mount!

Sorry I don’t think iGuider is supported by the MacOS. It works best under Windows with ASCOM driver.




Stay Safe and Healthy!

Kevin (Tech2)
Your Tech Support Team

iOptron Corporation
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Peter Polakovic
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Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Peter Polakovic »

It looks that iGuider is UVC compatible webcam (I suppose you enabled UVC driver, am I right?), but it doesn't have ST4 port, so you have to use "pulse guiding" with "iOptron mount (guider)" device (unfortunately I don't see what device you selected on the screenshot).

I think that the problem in your case was too faint star selected and too much noise. I recommend to try DONUTS detection algorithm instead, it will work also with a defocused stars.
Jay
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2021 8:00 pm

Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Jay »

Thank you Peter! I will use all of your suggestions. I also found an idea on Cloudy Nights Forum on how to add tape to the camera housing to stiffen it up slightly for better focus control. I had to experiment with the camera selection and now I will ensure UVC camera is selected. I did use DONUTS method. I will check pulse guiding. Thank you very much. I think I missed the PEC "enable" command on the mount that night. It defaults to "off/disable" every time the power is cycled. I am adding it to my checklist going forward. I really appreciate you taking the time to write and I will report back my results. I am enjoying learning but it is totally new ground for me so thanks for your patience with a novice.
Best,
Jay
Jay
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2021 8:00 pm

Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Jay »

Hello,
After making some changes to the CEM70G guide camera housing and achieving better focus control with the use of tape to tighten the friction, and deselecting all but the UVC camera and iOptron iGuider in the AG software, I was able to get an image capture to work with. The tips were helpful. Thank you again. I made sure I was polar aligned well with the iPolar camera (separate on the CEM70G), I reviewed the handbox selection and also made sure PEC playback was "On/enabled". I chose "calibrate" and DONUTS. Now I get a graph with no Dots and no red Dec plot. I am using the North+South correction mode. On a whim I tried Selected star mode and I get an audio message "Drift is too fast-Calibration started". a moving north indication in the text in the center pane, and fail and repeat. I stopped after four hours messing with it. Would PEC playback be fighting the AG guiding? I saw no difference if it was Enabled or Disabled. Also, I read somewhere that "unbalanced payload" can be helpful and wonder if that is my issue now? Or, is there a setting for drift correction that will get me on track with better results? I have a simple, light payload right now as I am starting out and learning. It is a Dovetail with ballhead and Nikon D800E with the 70-200mm f2.8 FL E. Not too heavy. That is all mounted in the saddle and balanced. At 3 min sub and 185mm I get the beginning of star trailing when unguided. I'm at a loss with even what question to ask. I fear I don't even have the vocabulary to communicate in the world of computers and mounts. Man, I feel like an idiot with this stuff. Has anyone seen a tutorial for someone like me using AG with IOS and CEM? Thank you again.
Jay
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Peter Polakovic
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Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Peter Polakovic »

This doesn't look like mechanical issue. I suspect the mount was not tracking and that's why whatever AstroGuider did, the drift was too fast and the calibration failed.
Jay
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2021 8:00 pm

Re: iOptron CEM70 support

Post by Jay »

Thank you. I wonder, if the mount was not tracking, should I have shut the mount all the way down and reset everything? What would be a corrective action in that case?
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