View Full Version here: : EQ6 Hand Controller Questions
03-04-2012, 02:08 AM
Currently I have an old black Skywatcher EQ6 (one of Houghy's old machines I bought of him back in about 2006 :) ) with a v2.5a hand Controller.
At camp when the mount was playing up (it is fixed now) I tried Daniels v3 hand controller and apart from some stupid start up questions on his, the 2 hand controllers did exactly the same job.
I know the v3 and onwards is Flash Upgradable, but what is there to upgrade. The v2.5a seems to do everything I need it to.
So my question is:
What would be the benefit (if any) of upgrading my hand controller to v3?
Am I missing out on something?
If it ain`t broke don`t fix it, and remember the KISS princible.
If you really want to change things, EQMOD would probably be a better option.
05-04-2012, 09:50 PM
I totally believe that too Bob, but just in case my Hand Controller ever dies it would be nice to know if I should pay more for a newer versions or just hunt up another 2.5a
I was wondering if there are any benefits to the controller upgrade.
I'm not interested in the EQmod as I regularly read posts by people in forums around the world having problems with it still.
Maybe when it becomes plug'n'play it might interest me ;)
Also, there is no room left in my laptop to plug in any EQmod :lol:
All the inputs are taken.
Just seeing this thread, i think that eqmod is a wonderful piece of software.
I used it with my astronomy program and it was click and slew.
When your hand controller dies, get the eqmod module or get it now and save your still good working controller Ken. :P
I know you are not computer savvy but i can set it up for you on a club night.
Those people in the forums who have problems are mostly people who don't know how to use eqmod :)
06-04-2012, 09:24 PM
OK Marty. :)
What do I need to buy to set it up?
06-04-2012, 09:38 PM
Quick Q Ken - I have the old black EQ6 as well, but it's NOT GOTO, it has the square black box handcontroller, so I'm a bit confused here..:shrug:
My handcontroller RA/DEC buttons keep buggering up & so far I've soldered in 2 new buttons to keep it going. If I can plug in another controller of some kind though..:question:
Ok i buy this for you -->> http://www.bintel.com.au/Mounts---Tripods/Mount-Accessories/Shoestring-USB2-br--EQ6-Interface/775/productview.aspx
And download all the stuff you need :P
Asi if it is non goto you are kind of stuffed :(
You have to keep replacing the buttons or get the control circuit IE the internals of the newer eq6 :(
06-04-2012, 10:26 PM
Thanks Martin, figured that was the case. Kind of got confused when Ken said he had 'the old black EQ6' so I was hoping there was some new technology/upgrade on the market rather than spending 7 or 8 hundred on the GOTO conversion. Oh well...Keep soldering, lol!
06-04-2012, 11:48 PM
Yeah Asi, I have the old black one but it is the upgrade model. Has the v2.5a hand Controller.
You can buy an upgrade kit for yours if you really want GoTo but it's not cheap: http://www.myastroshop.com.au/products/details.asp?id=MAS-022I
06-04-2012, 11:50 PM
Wow! Thanks Marty!!!
I have a USB hub here somewhere. I'll find it. All the USB sockets on the lappy are taken up already :P
I will also have to get hold of a serial cable to reach from the Mount to the Dining Room.
06-04-2012, 11:54 PM
Yeah thanks Ken. I'd rather flog (as in sell) the old EQ & just buy the GOTO version I reckon.
06-04-2012, 11:54 PM
How long should it be?
I have some spare USB extension cables here.
07-04-2012, 05:32 PM
Apparently USB cables won't work Marty. They say that USB is only good up to about 10m.
I have to go 20m (65 feet) :eyepop:
My other cables are 23m (75 feet), but 20m should reach.
And both ends will need serial plugs on them anyway. My mount is a Serial socket and so has that Serial to USB Shoestring adaptor cable :thumbsup:
Do you have any cable left that is long enough and has at least four wires?
Then i only need to have two RS232 plugs.
07-04-2012, 09:14 PM
Ken, EQ mod is the way to go and you wont look back.:thumbsup: If you need the length then will need a 5mtr POWERED USB extention cable or two.
I found that 4mtrs is about max for an unpowered USB cable to work reliably, but then again it may depend on how much you have running through it.
08-04-2012, 01:20 AM
Yep, I have the cable I was using to run the Samsung AstroVideo camera remotely.
It has 6 wires in it :thumbsup:
It is in 2 separate pieces. One about 50 feet long, the other about 25 feet long.
I will try buy some DB9 plugs for it :thumbsup:
08-04-2012, 01:22 AM
Daniel, I have to go 20m+
USB just can't handle that distance :thumbsup:
From the EQ Mod site:
"The cabling between the USB-RS232 convertor / PC and the EQDirect should be a 'straight' RS232 cable. The Cabling between the EQDirect and Mount should be a 'straight' cable but the connector type may vary with different mount types."
08-04-2012, 07:18 AM
If you want GoTo with OLD black controller, see here:
For a couple of bucks (and a bit of soldering) you will have a system that will do GoTo (but very slow...) and that can be connected with CdC or Stellarium (LX200 protocol).
A couple of important points re PC-direct interface (see bottom of the page): http://eq-mod.sourceforge.net/prerequisites.html#interface
09-04-2012, 11:33 AM
Ken, I think I remember reading here on the forum quite a while ago that you may be able to go 20m+ by joining multiple POWERED USB cables.
Sooo that will be the total sum of approx $120 ?? (not counting the EQmod)
A cable and two RS232 connectors is about $15 because Ken already has the cable :P
09-04-2012, 06:07 PM
Thanks Daniel, but like Marty said, I have the cable and only need 2 plugs that are about $6 each.
Also, the EQmod website recommends using RS-232 cable over long distance:
"If you need to cover longer distances then use a USB-232 convertor at the PC but make sure it is a good one that supplies true +-9V RS232 signals - these are typically the more expensive types. Run a standard shielded RS232 cable to the mount and fit an EQDIRECT (232-TTL convertor) at the far end. As before keep the distance from the EQDirect to the mount short. RS232 should be good for up to 30 metres."
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