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Thread: PHD graphs I'll show you mine if...

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    Default PHD graphs I'll show you mine if...



    Hi,

    I'm working hard at autoguiding with my LX200 and DSI. In the learning process, PHD has many features I'm trying to figure out. If you use it successfully I'm guessing you are familiar with the graphing function which gives a good visualization of what your mount and autoguider are doing in almost real-time.

    So, with that in mind, I hope folks will post their PHD graphs for others to see as a point of reference and encouragement. It’s a start.

    As I have no idea how mine compare, I just want to learn more and the graph seems to have the ability to quantify discussions about autoguiding nuisances.

    So, here’s mine.

    This is a good one (I think) for reference. Others show all sorts of obvious problems, which I'll eventually post to get advice about from the gang.

    Dave
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    Dave,

    I found the one I did on July 23rd. This was before I switched over the the 9x50 viewfinder as a guidescope so it's not quite as good as I got for my Trifid shot in August. I will post a new one next time out.
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    Both of those look better than mine. I'm still tuning my mount, but I generally have more oscillations in the RA. Plus I'm using the ETX125 as a guide scope right now, and not using EQMod.
    So my results might not be directly comparable.
    I'll try to get a screen shot of my graph tonight.

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    ETX125AT guiding WO Megrez 90 Apo/CGEM mount w/ polar scope
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    Al,

    What's your RA aggressiveness? It seems like when I set mine down to 75% or less it made quite a difference.
    Gordon
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    Phhhbbb.... I seem to get best results...when it works...at around 98. The Celestron guiding FAQs on their website say to use a very low number here, but when I do I get big swingy oscillations. I'd rather have the little noisy jumps, since they rarely exceed the first horizontal line up or down from center.
    I've found that the system is very sensitive to balance, and I'm still trying to figure that part out. I got some long periods last night with very small deviations, but right now it's not doing so well.
    I'll try to get a screenshot up in a bit.
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    OK, here's what it's doing right now. Or about ten minutes ago anyway. I was shooting the Crescent Nebula, almost overhead.


    I don't think I'm very well balanced yet, this is only my second evening using the side-by-side bar.

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    I also found balance to be critical. However I do set it to be a little "east" heavy as it keeps to gears meshed (and seems to help eliminate some of the "bounces").

    Another thing was setting the dec to only guide in the direction it makes the majority of adjustments in. My dec backlash is fairly bad so PHD can't make a true correction when it attempts to switch and just "unloads" the gears then when it decides to make a correction the other direction it would just sit. Finally when it made enough corrections and the backlash was removed it would jump (and bounce). So now I just watch for the direction it attempts to make the most corrections in (either North or South) and set it to only correct in that direction. It seems have to corrected those issues for the dec movement.

    I really need to post a screen shot since I switched to the finder scope. That really took a lot of weight off the mount and made a significant difference in guiding accuracy. Since my poor little EQ5p is so over loaded any small changes seem to make a big difference.
    Gordon
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    Hi guys,

    This is beginning to get really interesting. In my original post I said my guide exposures were 5 seconds. What's everyone else using? It would be useful to know. In addition my graph was for 50 increments. Looks to me as though 100 might be a better comparison standard; what do you think?

    Really hope we can get more people to participate in this little project.

    On another topic, has anyone tried Alignmaster? I did tonight and while the program went to the required stars pretty well, when it tried to compute the offset it told me I was 887 degress off. Ultimately ruined my set-up and I need to align again the old way... if I can remember how as it's been a while.

    Will post more graphs when I get things fixed.

    Dave

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    I'm using anywhere from 1 to 3 seconds. I try to use an exposure that will give dim but sharp stars to choose from. I've heard about "chasing the seeing" but so far I think I'm just seeing "chasing the chasing".

    I usually look at the graphs at the "250" setting to try to get a longer look at variations, and I'm shooting 120-240 second subs...I can't do longer right now because the sky is so bright.
    I've moved on to NGC891, only 20 degrees or so from the Moon right now, so I'm down to 90 second subs, don't know if I'll get anything useful...but at least the guiding is going fairly well.

    I haven't done PEC programming yet; is anyone else working without PEC?
    Last edited by alsetalokin; 08-29-2010 at 08:48 AM.

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    Meade DSI Pro II monochrome CCD; Meade LPI; Celestron NexImage; Canon EOS RebelXTi
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    I normally try to use 1.5 to 2 second guide exposure. Less than 3 seconds seems to help keep the noise out of the image. With the viewfinder setup I get much brighter and more targets than I did with the F/10 guidescope.

    Dave,
    Check your setups in Alignmaster. It almost sounds like you have "east" instead of "west" or vise versa....

    I haven't found that PEC training has helped or hindered when I'm using PHD. I normally just keep it shut off since I couldn't really see any difference for myself. In reading posts in different Yahoo groups it seems their are differing opinions on whether or not to use it so I guess it's just a preference or perhaps it may help for some brands of mounts.
    Gordon
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