Re: PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions


Apr 6, 2001

 


----------------------------

#2242 Apr 6, 2001

Hi,



I am considering a 900GTO mount and portable pier, primarily for CCD

work and have a few questions. I would appreciate any input.



1. I live in southern Arizona. Temperatures rarely fall below

freezing but summer temperatures can get up to 110 deg. F. I would

like to leave the mount in my yard, with a waterproof cover on it.

Are there any concerns with this approach? I am mainly concerned

about electronics overheating and lubrication running. I may

ultimately go to a permanent pier, once our development builds out.



2. Is there a drawing detail or photo anywhere showing exactly what

the portable pier legs look like at the end? If the above approach

doesn't work, I have a set of JMI wheeley bars and wonder if I can

adapt the portable pier to that.



3. How is the portable pier leveled?



4. I am planning to use a Televue TV-140 5.5" F/5 refractor with a

SBIG ST-8E camera and color filter wheel. Will the 10 and 18 pound

weights be sufficient? The refractor and saddle weighs around 20

lbs, the camera is around 5.



5. Does the autoguider port for the goto electronics interface

directly with the ST-8E, or is a relay box or equivalent required to

isolate the two?



6. Is there a maximum length of RS-232 cable specified?



7. What is the character height of the goto control box LED display?



8. Is the technical manual available anywhere for download, e.g., in

pdf format?



Thanks in advance,



John Smith



----------------------------

#2596 Jun 1, 2001

I just acquired a new 900GTO. What a beautiful piece of work! Now I

see what all the fuss is about g> Wonderful!



A couple of questions:



Is the pinout/connection between the guider port and an ST-8

documented anywhere? I want to make sure everything is correctly

wired before I start and I know there can be cable differences.



I am planning on building an opto-coupler interface between the focus

jack and a Robofocus. I measured a polarity reversing 3.27 volts

open circuit at the focus jack between tip and ring. I assume this

output source can source 20 mA or so since it is designed to operate

a focus motor. Is this correct?



I am very anxious to get out under the stars but am forcing myslef to

get prepared. Heck, I've even read the manual!



Thanks,



John



----------------------------

#2597 Jun 1, 2001

I just acquired a new 900GTO. What a beautiful piece of work! Now

I > see what all the fuss is about g> Wonderful!



The darn thing is so handsome that you can use it as a sculpture,

mine, when not in use, is fully set up in our livng room, something

nice to look at on cloudy days.



Thanks,

Vahe



----------------------------

#2598 Jun 1, 2001

You know, it's strange.



I heard the some thing from AP personal.



When my 1200 arrived it affected me similarly.



It's like the Questar.



It's just plain lovely.



vahe@... wrote: >

> > I just acquired a new 900GTO. What a beautiful piece of work! Now

> I

> > see what all the fuss is about g> Wonderful!

>

> The darn thing is so handsome that you can use it as a sculpture,

> mine, when not in use, is fully set up in our livng room, something

> nice to look at on cloudy days.

>

> Thanks,

> Vahe

>

> To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the ap-gto list

> see groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto

>

> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/



----------------------------

#2599 Jun 1, 2001

In a message dated 6/1/2001 7:12:40 AM Pacific Daylight Time,

jcsmith@... writes:



> >>Is the pinout/connection between the guider port and an ST-8

> documented anywhere? I want to make sure everything is correctly

> wired before I start and I know there can be cable differences.



The 900 mount is wired to work with the standard cable provided with the ST8.

The pinouts are : pin1 - NC, pin2 = Gnd, pin3 = E, pin4 = N, pin5 = S, pin 6

= W. No damage will occur if the signals are routed to the wrong pins. It

just won't respond to tracking signals. The only thing to watch out for is to

not drive any of the pins with a voltage. These inputs are made to be driven

with an open collector, such as the ST8 outputs.



>

> I am planning on building an opto-coupler interface between the focus

> jack and a Robofocus. I measured a polarity reversing 3.27 volts

> open circuit at the focus jack between tip and ring. I assume this

> output source can source 20 mA or so since it is designed to operate

> a focus motor. Is this correct?

>

>

The focus motor outputs are low and high voltage to drive a standard focus

motor at low and high speeds. The voltages are approximately 3 and 9 volts

and are achieved by pulse width modulation. They cannot be read with an open

circuit meter. There has to be some small load on the output to get a correct

reading. The output is not a current, rather it is a PWM voltage. The current

would be a function of the load according to the well known I=E/R, where I is

the current.



Roland Christen







[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]







----------------------------

#2601 Jun 1, 2001

Thanks, Roland. I intend to connect a couple of opto-isolators with

the inputs through a 1K resistor kind of back-to-back. The + voltage

between tip and ring resulting from focus-next will activate the IN

button via the opto-isolator transistor and the - voltage via a

second opto to activate the OUT on the Robofocus.



BTW, you have done a beautiful job on the 900GTO. The motion feels

like silk.



John --- In ap-gto@y..., chris1011@a... wrote:

> In a message dated 6/1/2001 7:12:40 AM Pacific Daylight Time,

> jcsmith@t... writes:

>

>

> > >>Is the pinout/connection between the guider port and an ST-8

> > documented anywhere? I want to make sure everything is correctly

> > wired before I start and I know there can be cable differences.

>

> The 900 mount is wired to work with the standard cable provided

with the ST8.

> The pinouts are : pin1 - NC, pin2 = Gnd, pin3 = E, pin4 = N, pin5 =

S, pin 6

> = W. No damage will occur if the signals are routed to the wrong

pins. It

> just won't respond to tracking signals. The only thing to watch out

for is to

> not drive any of the pins with a voltage. These inputs are made to

be driven

> with an open collector, such as the ST8 outputs.

>

>

> >

> > I am planning on building an opto-coupler interface between the

focus

> > jack and a Robofocus. I measured a polarity reversing 3.27 volts

> > open circuit at the focus jack between tip and ring. I assume

this

> > output source can source 20 mA or so since it is designed to

operate

> > a focus motor. Is this correct?

> >

> >

> The focus motor outputs are low and high voltage to drive a

standard focus

> motor at low and high speeds. The voltages are approximately 3 and

9 volts

> and are achieved by pulse width modulation. They cannot be read

with an open

> circuit meter. There has to be some small load on the output to get

a correct

> reading. The output is not a current, rather it is a PWM voltage.

The current

> would be a function of the load according to the well known I=E/R,

where I is

> the current.

>

> Roland Christen

>

>

>

> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



----------------------------

#2602 Jun 1, 2001

John, >Heck, I've even read the manual!



Music to my ears!



Marj





--- In ap-gto@y..., "John Smith" jcsmith@t...> wrote:

> I just acquired a new 900GTO. What a beautiful piece of work! Now

I

> see what all the fuss is about g> Wonderful!

>

> A couple of questions:

>

> Is the pinout/connection between the guider port and an ST-8

> documented anywhere? I want to make sure everything is correctly

> wired before I start and I know there can be cable differences.

>

> I am planning on building an opto-coupler interface between the

focus

> jack and a Robofocus. I measured a polarity reversing 3.27 volts

> open circuit at the focus jack between tip and ring. I assume this

> output source can source 20 mA or so since it is designed to

operate

> a focus motor. Is this correct?

>

> I am very anxious to get out under the stars but am forcing myslef

to

> get prepared. Heck, I've even read the manual!

>

> Thanks,

>

> John



----------------------------

#7428 May 11, 2003

Greetings,



1) I've read at the Astro Physics site the 900GTO can handle up to a 12" Schmidt-Cass and a 12-14" RC. Is there some particular reason why a Celestron C-14 cannot (should not) be mounted on the 900GTO? Why the 12" limit?



2) The 900GTO capacity is rated at approximately 70 lbs. What is the absolute heaviest load this mount can handle?



3) Does the size-to-weight ratio of the telescope and accessories impact the amount of weight the 900GTO can carry? Would the 900GTO handle a 70 lb refractor better than a 70 lb Schmidt-Cass since the refractor would be physically longer and have a lower center of gravity?



Thanks in advance.



Chuck Amedia

Tucson, Az, USA



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



----------------------------

#7429 May 11, 2003

On 05/11/03 3:32 AM chuckamedia wrote:

> Greetings,

>

> 1) I've read at the Astro Physics site the 900GTO can handle up to a 12"

> Schmidt-Cass and a 12-14" RC. Is there some particular reason why a Celestron

> C-14 cannot (should not) be mounted on the 900GTO? Why the 12" limit?



Probably because the center of gravity of the C14 would be farther from the

axis of RA rotation, and the C14 has more area to catch the wind. There may

be other issues I'm not thinking of.

> 2) The 900GTO capacity is rated at approximately 70 lbs. What is the absolute

> heaviest load this mount can handle?



Weight alone is not really a good way to rate a mount's carrying capacity.

Where the weight is located is also important.



Also, it isn't the sort of thing where 70 lbs. works well and 71 lbs.

suddenly doesn't. It is a gradual thing. I don't know how the various

companies determine the carrying capacity of their mounts, but they don't

seem to follow a standard. Losmandy's ratings seem to me to be much more

optimistic that those of Astro-Physics. Meade's and Celestron's seem to be

amazingly optimistic, IMO.



Among users, there seems to be a great range of what is and isn't

acceptable. There are many people who find a C14 on a G-11 to have an

acceptable level of stability. Others think it is absolute madness.



One thing I've always been curious about is, will exceeding the capacity of

a mount -- such as putting a C14 on a 900GTO -- do damage to the mount, or

will it just be unstable. I imagine that there must be some point where too

much weight would do damage. You couldn't put an SUV on top of Vixen GP

without doing damage. :-) My question is more about what level of

overloading causes damage, and what sort of damage would it be?

> 3) Does the size-to-weight ratio of the telescope and accessories impact the

> amount of weight the 900GTO can carry? Would the 900GTO handle a 70 lb

> refractor better than a 70 lb Schmidt-Cass since the refractor would be

> physically longer and have a lower center of gravity?



Actually, long focal length refractors can be more difficult because their

weight is so far from the axis of Dec rotation. The farther the weight is

from the axes of rotation (both RA and Dec), the more robust the mount needs

to be. Moment arm is the term often used to describe a measurement that

would be more revealing than simply a weight rating.



Regards,

Robin



Astro Accessories by Robin Casady

Stainless Steel Weights & Dovetail Saddles

New Location: www.RobinCasady.com/Astro







----------------------------

#20115 Nov 27, 2007

First, my apologies for probably being off topic ...



I had PEMpro AP SE v1.7 working with my 900GTO a year ago. I now need

to redo my PEC and want to use PEMpro V2 with my DMK31 'video camera'.

So I grab a trial version, have problems, read the web, grab beta

build 33 and seen to get the camera working with PEMpro on my desktop.

OK so far so good. Then I install the beta on my laptop and head out

to the observatory tonight (the first clear night in weeks) and

encounter problems galore. I'm getting all sorts of error messages

like need helper.dll V5.0.x or higher. So, I go to the ASCOM website

see the beta version 5, download and install it. I also grab the

separate helper.dll v5.x.y just in case.



Short version of the story from this point forward is that the ASCOM

software does not seem to be able to work with the AstroPhysics

driver. I get an 'AP Driver runtime error 91: Object Variable or With

block variable not set'.



I have also seen along the way errors like:

'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. cannot create ActiveX

component',

'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. Application defined or

Object defined error', and

'ASCOM Chooser failed to load driver. Class does not support

Automation or does not support expected interface.'



And after uninstalling and reinstalling just about everything, I can't

even get PEMpro AP SE to work again (reliably). I'm obviously omitting

a lot of the details here in the hope that someone will have seen this

before and can just set me straight. I'm using XP with all of the

latest service packs and patches including all the flavors of .NET. I

have also tried build 36 of PEMpro V2. I suspect I have my versions

crossed in some fatal way.



This ASCOM stuff is great in principle, but it sure seems like a house

of cards in a wind storm.



Can someone help or at least direct me to the proper place to inquire

further?



TIA, Joe



----------------------------

#20116 Nov 27, 2007

Hi Joe,



Try reinstalling the ASCOM 4.1 platform again. Do NOT install the 5.x beta

(it is still a beta). Then update the astro-physics driver and just

helper.dll. Update whichever driver PEMPRo asks about first (probably

Helper.dll). When that works go onto the next dll. Do not do anything more

than what is asked.



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

> On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 3:25 PM

> To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> Subject: [ap-gto] PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions

>

> First, my apologies for probably being off topic ...

>

> I had PEMpro AP SE v1.7 working with my 900GTO a year ago. I now need

> to redo my PEC and want to use PEMpro V2 with my DMK31 'video camera'.

> So I grab a trial version, have problems, read the web, grab beta

> build 33 and seen to get the camera working with PEMpro on my desktop.

> OK so far so good. Then I install the beta on my laptop and head out

> to the observatory tonight (the first clear night in weeks) and

> encounter problems galore. I'm getting all sorts of error messages

> like need helper.dll V5.0.x or higher. So, I go to the ASCOM website

> see the beta version 5, download and install it. I also grab the

> separate helper.dll v5.x.y just in case.

>

> Short version of the story from this point forward is that the ASCOM

> software does not seem to be able to work with the AstroPhysics

> driver. I get an 'AP Driver runtime error 91: Object Variable or With

> block variable not set'.

>

> I have also seen along the way errors like:

> 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. cannot create ActiveX

> component',

> 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. Application defined or

> Object defined error', and

> 'ASCOM Chooser failed to load driver. Class does not support

> Automation or does not support expected interface.'

>

> And after uninstalling and reinstalling just about everything, I can't

> even get PEMpro AP SE to work again (reliably). I'm obviously omitting

> a lot of the details here in the hope that someone will have seen this

> before and can just set me straight. I'm using XP with all of the

> latest service packs and patches including all the flavors of .NET. I

> have also tried build 36 of PEMpro V2. I suspect I have my versions

> crossed in some fatal way.

>

> This ASCOM stuff is great in principle, but it sure seems like a house

> of cards in a wind storm.

>

> Can someone help or at least direct me to the proper place to inquire

> further?

>

> TIA, Joe

>

>

>

>

>



----------------------------

#20119 Nov 27, 2007

Hi Joseph,



1. You should not be using POTH. You should connect directly to the AP

driver or things will not work correctly. Unfortunately I did not write that

driver so I may not be able to help you much with this problem. Are you in

the USA?



2. The DMK31 is a firewire CCD camera, isn't it? PEMPro just supports

inexpensive USB cameras. I don't have the time/inclination to test all of

the firewire camera variations out there so you should try MaximDL or maybe

AstroArt.



If you would like to correspond more you should post to the PEMPro forum on

the CCDWare site.



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

> On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 7:00 PM

> To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> Subject: [ap-gto] Re: PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions

>

> Thanks Ray, I was hoping you were going to be around this evening.

> I made some progress despite myself. I'll post some details here, but

> I am also willing to continue this in some other venue if you think it

> would be more appropriate.

>

> I reinstalled everything as you suggested. I still immediately ran

> into the Run Time Error 91 on the AP driver, but found a work around.

> I found that if I fired up the POTH and got that to connect to the GTO

> first, I could then get PEMpro v2 to connect to the mount without any

> further complaints. Part 1 reproducibly solved.

>

> Part 2: getting the DMK 31 to work with PEMpro. Firing up the Video

> interface works for the most part. When trying to change the settings

> I get an error/warning that some format is not set. Nevertheless, the

> changed settings seem to get set and I can control the camera and see

> an image. Part 2 sort of works.

>

> Part 3: trying out the polar alignment wizard. Here is where the

> camera needs to work but does not. The 'Measure Now' part of the

> Camera Information (2 of 9) attempts to take an image, but the picture

> that pops up is black. The video window did show me that stars should

> have been visible, so I have no idea why this pop-up is totally black.

> I have to pretend I see something and click twice to get out of this

> without PEMpro crashing/hiccuping. The next page 'determine N, S, E,

> W' fails every time. I can get to the third exposure occasionally, but

> I get another error (specifics of which I don't recall) a variable not

> set error or some such.

>

> Summary, I can get the mount to connect, but the camera only partially

> works. I do not know how many other DMK31 camera owners you have in

> the beta test program. I may still be doing something stupid

> (enlighten me please), but I am willing to help debug this if you need

> me to. I also have a Meade DSI to throw into the mix.

>

> BTW, thanks for working on a self contained solution for PEMpro to

> work with 'video cameras'.

>

> Joe

>

> --- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> , "Ray Gralak" rgr@...> wrote:

> >

> > Hi Joe,

> >

> > Try reinstalling the ASCOM 4.1 platform again. Do NOT install the

> 5.x beta

> > (it is still a beta). Then update the astro-physics driver and just

> > helper.dll. Update whichever driver PEMPRo asks about first

> (probably

> > Helper.dll). When that works go onto the next dll. Do not do

> anything more

> > than what is asked.

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> ]

> > > On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> > > Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 3:25 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > Subject: [ap-gto] PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions

> > >

> > > First, my apologies for probably being off topic ...

> > >

> > > I had PEMpro AP SE v1.7 working with my 900GTO a year

> ago. I now need

> > > to redo my PEC and want to use PEMpro V2 with my DMK31

> 'video camera'.

> > > So I grab a trial version, have problems, read the web, grab beta

> > > build 33 and seen to get the camera working with PEMpro

> on my desktop.

> > > OK so far so good. Then I install the beta on my laptop

> and head out

> > > to the observatory tonight (the first clear night in weeks) and

> > > encounter problems galore. I'm getting all sorts of error messages

> > > like need helper.dll V5.0.x or higher. So, I go to the

> ASCOM website

> > > see the beta version 5, download and install it. I also grab the

> > > separate helper.dll v5.x.y just in case.

> > >

> > > Short version of the story from this point forward is

> that the ASCOM

> > > software does not seem to be able to work with the AstroPhysics

> > > driver. I get an 'AP Driver runtime error 91: Object

> Variable or With

> > > block variable not set'.

> > >

> > > I have also seen along the way errors like:

> > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. cannot create ActiveX

> > > component',

> > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. Application defined or

> > > Object defined error', and

> > > 'ASCOM Chooser failed to load driver. Class does not support

> > > Automation or does not support expected interface.'

> > >

> > > And after uninstalling and reinstalling just about

> everything, I can't

> > > even get PEMpro AP SE to work again (reliably). I'm

> obviously omitting

> > > a lot of the details here in the hope that someone will

> have seen this

> > > before and can just set me straight. I'm using XP with all of the

> > > latest service packs and patches including all the

> flavors of .NET. I

> > > have also tried build 36 of PEMpro V2. I suspect I have

> my versions

> > > crossed in some fatal way.

> > >

> > > This ASCOM stuff is great in principle, but it sure seems

> like a house

> > > of cards in a wind storm.

> > >

> > > Can someone help or at least direct me to the proper

> place to inquire

> > > further?

> > >

> > > TIA, Joe

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

>

>

>

>

>







----------------------------

#20121 Nov 28, 2007

Hi Ray:



Just to make sure you are aware as you write the new Pulseguide

driver, I need to attach ACP to the POTH driver first and then to the

current ASCOM driver. If I don't, there some kind of timing issue and

the mount won't Park correctly 90% of the time. It works 100% when I

use both drivers.



BTW, any eta on the new Pulseguide driver?



Bob











--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Ray Gralak" rgr@...> wrote:

>

> Hi Joseph,

>

> 1. You should not be using POTH. You should connect directly to the AP

> driver or things will not work correctly. Unfortunately I did not

write that

> driver so I may not be able to help you much with this problem. Are

you in

> the USA?

>

> 2. The DMK31 is a firewire CCD camera, isn't it? PEMPro just supports

> inexpensive USB cameras. I don't have the time/inclination to test

all of

> the firewire camera variations out there so you should try MaximDL

or maybe

> AstroArt.

>

> If you would like to correspond more you should post to the PEMPro

forum on

> the CCDWare site.

>

> -Ray

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

> > On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> > Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 7:00 PM

> > To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> > Subject: [ap-gto] Re: PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions

> >

> > Thanks Ray, I was hoping you were going to be around this evening.

> > I made some progress despite myself. I'll post some details here, but

> > I am also willing to continue this in some other venue if you think it

> > would be more appropriate.

> >

> > I reinstalled everything as you suggested. I still immediately ran

> > into the Run Time Error 91 on the AP driver, but found a work around.

> > I found that if I fired up the POTH and got that to connect to the GTO

> > first, I could then get PEMpro v2 to connect to the mount without any

> > further complaints. Part 1 reproducibly solved.

> >

> > Part 2: getting the DMK 31 to work with PEMpro. Firing up the Video

> > interface works for the most part. When trying to change the settings

> > I get an error/warning that some format is not set. Nevertheless, the

> > changed settings seem to get set and I can control the camera and see

> > an image. Part 2 sort of works.

> >

> > Part 3: trying out the polar alignment wizard. Here is where the

> > camera needs to work but does not. The 'Measure Now' part of the

> > Camera Information (2 of 9) attempts to take an image, but the picture

> > that pops up is black. The video window did show me that stars should

> > have been visible, so I have no idea why this pop-up is totally black.

> > I have to pretend I see something and click twice to get out of this

> > without PEMpro crashing/hiccuping. The next page 'determine N, S, E,

> > W' fails every time. I can get to the third exposure occasionally, but

> > I get another error (specifics of which I don't recall) a variable not

> > set error or some such.

> >

> > Summary, I can get the mount to connect, but the camera only partially

> > works. I do not know how many other DMK31 camera owners you have in

> > the beta test program. I may still be doing something stupid

> > (enlighten me please), but I am willing to help debug this if you need

> > me to. I also have a Meade DSI to throw into the mix.

> >

> > BTW, thanks for working on a self contained solution for PEMpro to

> > work with 'video cameras'.

> >

> > Joe

> >

> > --- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> > mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> , "Ray Gralak" rgr@> wrote:

> > >

> > > Hi Joe,

> > >

> > > Try reinstalling the ASCOM 4.1 platform again. Do NOT install the

> > 5.x beta

> > > (it is still a beta). Then update the astro-physics driver and just

> > > helper.dll. Update whichever driver PEMPRo asks about first

> > (probably

> > > Helper.dll). When that works go onto the next dll. Do not do

> > anything more

> > > than what is asked.

> > >

> > > -Ray

> > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> > mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> ]

> > > > On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> > > > Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 3:25 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > > Subject: [ap-gto] PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions

> > > >

> > > > First, my apologies for probably being off topic ...

> > > >

> > > > I had PEMpro AP SE v1.7 working with my 900GTO a year

> > ago. I now need

> > > > to redo my PEC and want to use PEMpro V2 with my DMK31

> > 'video camera'.

> > > > So I grab a trial version, have problems, read the web, grab beta

> > > > build 33 and seen to get the camera working with PEMpro

> > on my desktop.

> > > > OK so far so good. Then I install the beta on my laptop

> > and head out

> > > > to the observatory tonight (the first clear night in weeks) and

> > > > encounter problems galore. I'm getting all sorts of error messages

> > > > like need helper.dll V5.0.x or higher. So, I go to the

> > ASCOM website

> > > > see the beta version 5, download and install it. I also grab the

> > > > separate helper.dll v5.x.y just in case.

> > > >

> > > > Short version of the story from this point forward is

> > that the ASCOM

> > > > software does not seem to be able to work with the AstroPhysics

> > > > driver. I get an 'AP Driver runtime error 91: Object

> > Variable or With

> > > > block variable not set'.

> > > >

> > > > I have also seen along the way errors like:

> > > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. cannot create ActiveX

> > > > component',

> > > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. Application defined or

> > > > Object defined error', and

> > > > 'ASCOM Chooser failed to load driver. Class does not support

> > > > Automation or does not support expected interface.'

> > > >

> > > > And after uninstalling and reinstalling just about

> > everything, I can't

> > > > even get PEMpro AP SE to work again (reliably). I'm

> > obviously omitting

> > > > a lot of the details here in the hope that someone will

> > have seen this

> > > > before and can just set me straight. I'm using XP with all of the

> > > > latest service packs and patches including all the

> > flavors of .NET. I

> > > > have also tried build 36 of PEMpro V2. I suspect I have

> > my versions

> > > > crossed in some fatal way.

> > > >

> > > > This ASCOM stuff is great in principle, but it sure seems

> > like a house

> > > > of cards in a wind storm.

> > > >

> > > > Can someone help or at least direct me to the proper

> > place to inquire

> > > > further?

> > > >

> > > > TIA, Joe

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

> >

> >

> >

> >

> >

>







----------------------------

#20122 Nov 28, 2007

Hi Bob,



The new AP driver will be a hub so you can eliminate POTH.



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

> On Behalf Of Bob Holzer

> Sent: Wednesday, November 28, 2007 10:07 AM

> To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> Subject: [ap-gto] Re: PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions

>

>

> Hi Ray:

>

> Just to make sure you are aware as you write the new Pulseguide

> driver, I need to attach ACP to the POTH driver first and then to the

> current ASCOM driver. If I don't, there some kind of timing issue and

> the mount won't Park correctly 90% of the time. It works 100% when I

> use both drivers.

>

> BTW, any eta on the new Pulseguide driver?

>

> Bob

>

> --- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> , "Ray Gralak" rgr@...> wrote:

> >

> > Hi Joseph,

> >

> > 1. You should not be using POTH. You should connect

> directly to the AP

> > driver or things will not work correctly. Unfortunately I did not

> write that

> > driver so I may not be able to help you much with this problem. Are

> you in

> > the USA?

> >

> > 2. The DMK31 is a firewire CCD camera, isn't it? PEMPro

> just supports

> > inexpensive USB cameras. I don't have the time/inclination to test

> all of

> > the firewire camera variations out there so you should try MaximDL

> or maybe

> > AstroArt.

> >

> > If you would like to correspond more you should post to the PEMPro

> forum on

> > the CCDWare site.

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> ]

> > > On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> > > Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 7:00 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > Subject: [ap-gto] Re: PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and

> 900GTO questions

> > >

> > > Thanks Ray, I was hoping you were going to be around this evening.

> > > I made some progress despite myself. I'll post some

> details here, but

> > > I am also willing to continue this in some other venue if

> you think it

> > > would be more appropriate.

> > >

> > > I reinstalled everything as you suggested. I still immediately ran

> > > into the Run Time Error 91 on the AP driver, but found a

> work around.

> > > I found that if I fired up the POTH and got that to

> connect to the GTO

> > > first, I could then get PEMpro v2 to connect to the mount

> without any

> > > further complaints. Part 1 reproducibly solved.

> > >

> > > Part 2: getting the DMK 31 to work with PEMpro. Firing up

> the Video

> > > interface works for the most part. When trying to change

> the settings

> > > I get an error/warning that some format is not set.

> Nevertheless, the

> > > changed settings seem to get set and I can control the

> camera and see

> > > an image. Part 2 sort of works.

> > >

> > > Part 3: trying out the polar alignment wizard. Here is where the

> > > camera needs to work but does not. The 'Measure Now' part of the

> > > Camera Information (2 of 9) attempts to take an image,

> but the picture

> > > that pops up is black. The video window did show me that

> stars should

> > > have been visible, so I have no idea why this pop-up is

> totally black.

> > > I have to pretend I see something and click twice to get

> out of this

> > > without PEMpro crashing/hiccuping. The next page

> 'determine N, S, E,

> > > W' fails every time. I can get to the third exposure

> occasionally, but

> > > I get another error (specifics of which I don't recall) a

> variable not

> > > set error or some such.

> > >

> > > Summary, I can get the mount to connect, but the camera

> only partially

> > > works. I do not know how many other DMK31 camera owners

> you have in

> > > the beta test program. I may still be doing something stupid

> > > (enlighten me please), but I am willing to help debug

> this if you need

> > > me to. I also have a Meade DSI to throw into the mix.

> > >

> > > BTW, thanks for working on a self contained solution for PEMpro to

> > > work with 'video cameras'.

> > >

> > > Joe

> > >

> > > --- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> , "Ray Gralak" rgr@> wrote:

> > > >

> > > > Hi Joe,

> > > >

> > > > Try reinstalling the ASCOM 4.1 platform again. Do NOT

> install the

> > > 5.x beta

> > > > (it is still a beta). Then update the astro-physics

> driver and just

> > > > helper.dll. Update whichever driver PEMPRo asks about first

> > > (probably

> > > > Helper.dll). When that works go onto the next dll. Do not do

> > > anything more

> > > > than what is asked.

> > > >

> > > > -Ray

> > > >

> > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> ]

> > > > > On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> > > > > Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 3:25 PM

> > > > > To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > > > Subject: [ap-gto] PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and

> 900GTO questions

> > > > >

> > > > > First, my apologies for probably being off topic ...

> > > > >

> > > > > I had PEMpro AP SE v1.7 working with my 900GTO a year

> > > ago. I now need

> > > > > to redo my PEC and want to use PEMpro V2 with my DMK31

> > > 'video camera'.

> > > > > So I grab a trial version, have problems, read the

> web, grab beta

> > > > > build 33 and seen to get the camera working with PEMpro

> > > on my desktop.

> > > > > OK so far so good. Then I install the beta on my laptop

> > > and head out

> > > > > to the observatory tonight (the first clear night in

> weeks) and

> > > > > encounter problems galore. I'm getting all sorts of

> error messages

> > > > > like need helper.dll V5.0.x or higher. So, I go to the

> > > ASCOM website

> > > > > see the beta version 5, download and install it. I

> also grab the

> > > > > separate helper.dll v5.x.y just in case.

> > > > >

> > > > > Short version of the story from this point forward is

> > > that the ASCOM

> > > > > software does not seem to be able to work with the

> AstroPhysics

> > > > > driver. I get an 'AP Driver runtime error 91: Object

> > > Variable or With

> > > > > block variable not set'.

> > > > >

> > > > > I have also seen along the way errors like:

> > > > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. cannot

> create ActiveX

> > > > > component',

> > > > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. Application

> defined or

> > > > > Object defined error', and

> > > > > 'ASCOM Chooser failed to load driver. Class does not support

> > > > > Automation or does not support expected interface.'

> > > > >

> > > > > And after uninstalling and reinstalling just about

> > > everything, I can't

> > > > > even get PEMpro AP SE to work again (reliably). I'm

> > > obviously omitting

> > > > > a lot of the details here in the hope that someone will

> > > have seen this

> > > > > before and can just set me straight. I'm using XP

> with all of the

> > > > > latest service packs and patches including all the

> > > flavors of .NET. I

> > > > > have also tried build 36 of PEMpro V2. I suspect I have

> > > my versions

> > > > > crossed in some fatal way.

> > > > >

> > > > > This ASCOM stuff is great in principle, but it sure seems

> > > like a house

> > > > > of cards in a wind storm.

> > > > >

> > > > > Can someone help or at least direct me to the proper

> > > place to inquire

> > > > > further?

> > > > >

> > > > > TIA, Joe

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

>

>

>

>

>







----------------------------

#20123 Nov 28, 2007

Bob,



Are you using the latest ASCOM driver - there's an update which isn't

rolled into the platform install: v4.1.25



It's a separate download from the link below - it fixed some parking

problems according to the release notes.



ascom-standards.org/download/APDriver-4-1-25.zip





I use this and can connect all ASCOM apps (including ACP) to my AP900

CP2 and park just fine every time.



John



--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Bob Holzer" b.holzer@...> wrote:

>

>

> Hi Ray:

>

> Just to make sure you are aware as you write the new Pulseguide

> driver, I need to attach ACP to the POTH driver first and then to the

> current ASCOM driver. If I don't, there some kind of timing issue and

> the mount won't Park correctly 90% of the time. It works 100% when I

> use both drivers.

>

> BTW, any eta on the new Pulseguide driver?

>

> Bob

>

>

>

>

>

>

> --- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Ray Gralak" rgr@> wrote:

> >

> > Hi Joseph,

> >

> > 1. You should not be using POTH. You should connect directly to the AP

> > driver or things will not work correctly. Unfortunately I did not

> write that

> > driver so I may not be able to help you much with this problem. Are

> you in

> > the USA?

> >

> > 2. The DMK31 is a firewire CCD camera, isn't it? PEMPro just supports

> > inexpensive USB cameras. I don't have the time/inclination to test

> all of

> > the firewire camera variations out there so you should try MaximDL

> or maybe

> > AstroArt.

> >

> > If you would like to correspond more you should post to the PEMPro

> forum on

> > the CCDWare site.

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

> > > On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> > > Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 7:00 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> > > Subject: [ap-gto] Re: PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO

questions

> > >

> > > Thanks Ray, I was hoping you were going to be around this evening.

> > > I made some progress despite myself. I'll post some details

here, but

> > > I am also willing to continue this in some other venue if you

think it

> > > would be more appropriate.

> > >

> > > I reinstalled everything as you suggested. I still immediately ran

> > > into the Run Time Error 91 on the AP driver, but found a work

around.

> > > I found that if I fired up the POTH and got that to connect to

the GTO

> > > first, I could then get PEMpro v2 to connect to the mount

without any

> > > further complaints. Part 1 reproducibly solved.

> > >

> > > Part 2: getting the DMK 31 to work with PEMpro. Firing up the Video

> > > interface works for the most part. When trying to change the

settings

> > > I get an error/warning that some format is not set.

Nevertheless, the

> > > changed settings seem to get set and I can control the camera

and see

> > > an image. Part 2 sort of works.

> > >

> > > Part 3: trying out the polar alignment wizard. Here is where the

> > > camera needs to work but does not. The 'Measure Now' part of the

> > > Camera Information (2 of 9) attempts to take an image, but the

picture

> > > that pops up is black. The video window did show me that stars

should

> > > have been visible, so I have no idea why this pop-up is totally

black.

> > > I have to pretend I see something and click twice to get out of this

> > > without PEMpro crashing/hiccuping. The next page 'determine N, S, E,

> > > W' fails every time. I can get to the third exposure

occasionally, but

> > > I get another error (specifics of which I don't recall) a

variable not

> > > set error or some such.

> > >

> > > Summary, I can get the mount to connect, but the camera only

partially

> > > works. I do not know how many other DMK31 camera owners you have in

> > > the beta test program. I may still be doing something stupid

> > > (enlighten me please), but I am willing to help debug this if

you need

> > > me to. I also have a Meade DSI to throw into the mix.

> > >

> > > BTW, thanks for working on a self contained solution for PEMpro to

> > > work with 'video cameras'.

> > >

> > > Joe

> > >

> > > --- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> > > mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> , "Ray Gralak" rgr@> wrote:

> > > >

> > > > Hi Joe,

> > > >

> > > > Try reinstalling the ASCOM 4.1 platform again. Do NOT install the

> > > 5.x beta

> > > > (it is still a beta). Then update the astro-physics driver and

just

> > > > helper.dll. Update whichever driver PEMPRo asks about first

> > > (probably

> > > > Helper.dll). When that works go onto the next dll. Do not do

> > > anything more

> > > > than what is asked.

> > > >

> > > > -Ray

> > > >

> > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> > > mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> ]

> > > > > On Behalf Of Joseph M Zawodny

> > > > > Sent: Tuesday, November 27, 2007 3:25 PM

> > > > > To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>

> > > > > Subject: [ap-gto] PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO

questions

> > > > >

> > > > > First, my apologies for probably being off topic ...

> > > > >

> > > > > I had PEMpro AP SE v1.7 working with my 900GTO a year

> > > ago. I now need

> > > > > to redo my PEC and want to use PEMpro V2 with my DMK31

> > > 'video camera'.

> > > > > So I grab a trial version, have problems, read the web, grab

beta

> > > > > build 33 and seen to get the camera working with PEMpro

> > > on my desktop.

> > > > > OK so far so good. Then I install the beta on my laptop

> > > and head out

> > > > > to the observatory tonight (the first clear night in weeks) and

> > > > > encounter problems galore. I'm getting all sorts of error

messages

> > > > > like need helper.dll V5.0.x or higher. So, I go to the

> > > ASCOM website

> > > > > see the beta version 5, download and install it. I also grab the

> > > > > separate helper.dll v5.x.y just in case.

> > > > >

> > > > > Short version of the story from this point forward is

> > > that the ASCOM

> > > > > software does not seem to be able to work with the AstroPhysics

> > > > > driver. I get an 'AP Driver runtime error 91: Object

> > > Variable or With

> > > > > block variable not set'.

> > > > >

> > > > > I have also seen along the way errors like:

> > > > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. cannot create ActiveX

> > > > > component',

> > > > > 'PEMpro error opening ASCOM setup dialog. Application defined or

> > > > > Object defined error', and

> > > > > 'ASCOM Chooser failed to load driver. Class does not support

> > > > > Automation or does not support expected interface.'

> > > > >

> > > > > And after uninstalling and reinstalling just about

> > > everything, I can't

> > > > > even get PEMpro AP SE to work again (reliably). I'm

> > > obviously omitting

> > > > > a lot of the details here in the hope that someone will

> > > have seen this

> > > > > before and can just set me straight. I'm using XP with all

of the

> > > > > latest service packs and patches including all the

> > > flavors of .NET. I

> > > > > have also tried build 36 of PEMpro V2. I suspect I have

> > > my versions

> > > > > crossed in some fatal way.

> > > > >

> > > > > This ASCOM stuff is great in principle, but it sure seems

> > > like a house

> > > > > of cards in a wind storm.

> > > > >

> > > > > Can someone help or at least direct me to the proper

> > > place to inquire

> > > > > further?

> > > > >

> > > > > TIA, Joe

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

>







----------------------------

#20125 Nov 28, 2007

Hi Joe,

> I do not connect through the POTH. However, I must start the POTH,

> connect to the telescope simulator, disconnect from it and then select

> & setup the AP driver. If I do anything else I get the dreaded Runtime

> Error 91. I never connect to it with the POTH. Once I've gotten the

> driver to load, I shut down the POTH and fire up PEMpro v2. It then

> connects to the mount without a hitch. Obviously something weird going

> on here since this is not the way it used to work with PEMpro AP SE

> v1.7 a year ago, but that is what I have to go through now. I gather

> from other posts to this thread that there is another AP driver in the

> works???



Yes, there is another driver in the works but the current driver works so

there is a problem with your PC somewhere. Just to be sure you don't have

any residual components installed go to add/remove programs and uninstall

all instances of ASCOM and PEMPro V1, V2, and APSE. Then reinstall ASCOM and

PEMPro V2. Make sure to install the latest AP driver and helper.dll (PEMPro

will warn you if the wrong versions are installed).

> BTW, I tried using the Meade DSI (no Pro, no II's) via AstroArt. I

> connect OK but get an error that PEMpro cannot open the foobar.FIT



Huh? what is foobar.fit?

> file when I'm going through the polar alignment wizard. Does PEMpro

> care that the DSI pixels are not square (if I ever get this to work)?



It doesn't matter. Pixel scale is calculated in the RA direction on the CCD

so it gets scaled correctly no matter what the orientation is.

> I hate debugging out in the cold!



Why not try it indoors then? You don't need stars to test for any of the

above problems.



Also, if you have more questions please post to the CCDWare forum as this

discussion may be getting off-topic (unless others have interest in the

outcome).

>I thought about buying MaxIm DL, but I'd only use it to work with

>PEMpro. That seems to be a waste of $460 doesn't it?



IMO, no it is not a waste. Maxim has a lot of functionality including

extensive image processing capabilities. If you haven't tried remote

automation from inside your warm home yet then maybe Maxim is for you (you

can use it with automation applications like ACP, MaxPoint, and CCD

Autopilot). Plus MaximDL/CCD works with virtually every camera, so when you

migrate to a new camera you do not have to buy and/or learn another

application.



-Ray



----------------------------

#20127 Nov 28, 2007

Joe,

> Sorry about the foobar.FIT part. foobar is used by unix-types to

> denote an unspecified item - its sort of a wildcard variable. Anyway,

> the Measure Now button on the Camera Information page apparently

> creates a file in the PEMpro directory called mosaic.fit (or something

> close to that). Similarly the Determine N, S, E, and W start button

> creates 3 FIT files somethingorother1.fit, somethingorother2.fit, and

> somethingorother3.fit. I don't recall the exact names for these latter

> 3 files so I just inserted the unix wildcard name foobar.



OK, understood.

> Interestingly, when I was using the DMK firewire camera last night

> these files were created (and called mosaic.fit.bmp ...) but were

> completely black. The ones from the DSI via AstroArt were never

> created (or were deleted). Nothing noteworthy to my untrained eye in

> the polar alignment wizard log file either.



The DMK firewire file is a bitmap file (not a FITS file). It was probably

black because the driver for the camera does not support the DirectDraw

callback interface. The Imaging Source uses their own toolkit interface for

their cameras and thus I am not sure it complies completely with the aspects

of DirectDraw that PEMPro needs to use. Anyway, I have no way of knowing for

sure because I do not have that camera. I did send them an email a few weeks

back asking if I could borrow one (but not your particular model) for

testing but I never heard back from them.

> I'll remove/delete everything and reinstall from scratch as you

> suggest (not sure I have the AP SE v1.7 'source' file anymore, but I

> plan to buy v2 once I get it to work). I'll pick this thread back up

> in the CCDware forums since there are no more loose ends here. Any

> particular place in the forum you'd recommend?



The PEMPro forum would work for me! :-)



-Ray



----------------------------

#21297 Mar 13, 2008

Where does one get the v5.03 of the Helper.dll file? I receive an error message when

connecting the AP900 to Pempro2?



----------------------------

#21298 Mar 13, 2008

You can find some of the ASCOM files here, including the helper file:



www.siriusimaging.com/ASCOM/



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

> On Behalf Of r1300rs

> Sent: Thursday, March 13, 2008 6:07 AM

> To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> Subject: [ap-gto] Re: PEMpro V2, ASCOM, drivers, and 900GTO questions

>

> Where does one get the v5.03 of the Helper.dll file? I

> receive an error message when

> connecting the AP900 to Pempro2?

>

>

>

>

>







----------------------------

#21321 Mar 16, 2008

Thanks so much for the link. I'm not sure why the file didn't update when I installed the

ASCOM 5 platform. Both the Helper.dll and Helper2.dll are older than the one requested by

PemPro.



Much appreciated Ray!



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