IDAS LPS Filters

•April 8, 2018 • Leave a Comment

Many users should start enjoying astro imaging with a new LPS filter – LPS-D2 these days. LPS family comprises 4 members which now widely cover various sky conditions.

Meanwhile, I’m having some common questions from several people too. I expected following plots clarified all. These shows how each filter works with each light pollution emission individually.

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Click to go the page

In short, a bit too rough though

D2 : for white LED and HP/LP sodium

D1 : for mercury and LP sodium

P2 : for mercury and LP sodium

V4 : generally for all, nebula filter

Keep in mind, there is no perfect and no one-piece solution. Also the latest LPS-D2 is not always the best. As shown on a plot, if D2 filter is used under mercury-dominant sky, the image turns greenish or bluish cast. All depend on your sky condition. The point is how to figure out the best possible way while minimizing the compromise under your sky.

What is mercury vapor? or sodium? For the references, I link the pages described on them.

Mercury

Sodium

And what type/size of filter? that is next step and depends on your scope/lens and camera.

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As shown above, IDAS publishes the actual measured data (not designed value) up to 1100nm. Silicon-based sensor is still sensitive enough up to 1000nm or so. So for us, actually seeing how blocking 700 – 1100nm range is very important at “actual measured value”. So these data show what you get as commercial products.

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SS-one Vixen GPA Kit

•April 3, 2018 • 1 Comment

Here is the SS-one conversion procedure for Vixen GP(D) mounts. This gives your old Vixen mounts 100x GOTO capability plus all KODO’s key features.

GPA


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As described on the manual, the entire process are straight forward. So nothing challenged at all.

Part # SS-GPA : $795.00

The kit comes with a KODO controller, cables, motors and wires. All necessary parts are included. A power cable interface is a cigarette light plug as standard.

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Keep in mind, KODO controller is a smart utility tool, which works with other mounts by changing cables and motor/gear parameter. So the controller included in GPA kit is not dedicated to Vixen mounts, but also functional for other possible mounts if you wish to switch near future. So this should be good value overall and on long term basis.

Polar camera is optional.

We are currently working on KODO manual.

 

 

 

SS-one/Sky Watcher EQ5 System

•April 2, 2018 • Leave a Comment

This is 1st SS-one complete system with a mount. The complete set will be commercially available from Hutech or Hutech authorized dealers middle of this month. A mount shown below is Meade LX-70, but EQ5 and any of EQ5 clones work with a KODO controller.

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Features ;

  • No PC required for guiding, polar alignment and dithered imaging
  • Premium hybrid stepper motors for quick responses during guiding
  • Polar camera as standard achieves precise polar alignment within a couple of minutes
  • 300x quiet slew motion
  • Dithered imaging with all of DSLRs currently available in the market
  • Works with ZWO Image Capture DX for ZWO dithering
  • Compatible with SkySafari through a smartphone or a tablet
  • Upgrade kit available without a mount for a current EQ5 owner

 

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Unlike my expectation, EQ5 mount is surprisingly lightweight, but very solid. Mechanically very well-made. The weight and solidness are my personal taste. The solid shape and smooth gears along with modern hybrid motors and a smart controller give you high quality imaging without compromise at the reasonable cost. Highly recommended!! Tripod is very steady too. But I feel it’s a bit bulky. So I might consider something of the way for more portable tripod.

This will be demonstrated at NEAF.

And a following is my Ted special mount system. I’m sure there is no 2nd unit anywhere, even in Japan. I converted PM-1’s DEC unit into RA single tracking. Because of originally DEC, it has no polar scope inside. So I added a polar camera in front. AG Element allows for polar alignment as well as auto guiding.

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BORG 107FL F3.9ED

•March 23, 2018 • Leave a Comment

Finally the scope has come back to me after travelling in Asia.

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420mm long & 4.6kg including a motor unit. It’s heaviest among current BORG systems. But still much lighter than the competitor’s. 66mm aperture ED, as 2nd objective lens, is set into a tube inside along with other 3 elements. So BORG-proprietary total 6-element advanced petzval optical design. As far as I know, this should be 1st optical design utilizing both fluorite and ED in same optical train.

Along with the motorized true 3″ FTF, all should be the premium grade optically and mechanically.  And most convenient airline-transportable 4″  astrograph in size and weight.

And here is ready to go under the sky.

I will resume the final field test.

IDAS LPS-D2

•March 21, 2018 • Leave a Comment

I start receiving the feedback on LPS-D2 filter from many customers.

All are almost same as expected. One of customers mentions that he gave up LRGB imaging at his location because of the light-polluted sky. So he did narrowband imaging there before. But now he has realized LPS-D2 allows to do LRGB at same place. This comment encourages us a lot to try new things. Yes, for me, LPS-D2 should be a primary filter at my backyard too.

This new filter have been already shipped to most of IDAS dealers all over the world. So please contact your favorite local shop if you are interested. It should be in stock at most of places.  We are now shipping 2nd production lot after 1st one has been sold out quickly. Canon body-mounted filters will get available sometime next month. For Canon users, please stay tuned here.

Keep in mind, the result depends on the sky condition. LPS-D2 is not always best. Still LPS-P2 or D1 might work better depending on a kind of the sky. So check out what kind of light pollution source your sky is first.

 

SS-one Controllers

•March 16, 2018 • Leave a Comment

After field-testing over several months or more, we have determined the final specs and price of each commercial unit as follows;

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  1. We were originally expecting to include the autoguiding function in ZWO capture as well, so that it allows for the dithered imaging by itself. But due to the software uncertainty between ZWO camera driver and controller, we have decided to remove the autoguiding function from ZWO capture. So it will be the image capturing only for the time being.
  2. KODO has 2-ch shutter trigger ports. See an example. A picture shows one port for ZWO Image Capture and another for DSLR. 0316b This way allows for the dithered imaging. DSLR doesn’t require any extra unit.
  3. AG Element is commercially available. Other two will be within a couple of month.
  4. KODO works at 5V unless motor controls are used.
  5. The 1st production of SS-one mount – Expedition, I understand many are seriously interested in, will have further delay. I will let you know here as soon as the production schedule will be finally set.

 

 

 

Back To Office

•March 13, 2018 • 7 Comments

It’s been for a while since my last post. I came back to the town last weekend. My Asian tour was really successful and fruitful. I appreciate all of persons who supported me there. Thank you so much!! Now a lot of things to do have been piled up at my desk. I have to work hard to catch up…..

Hong Kong BORG dealer – Peter Lee made RoboFocus brackets. This is my setup with 7875 M75 focuser.  Quite easy to firmly set and align.

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With 7835 (shown above in a picture)

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I will start carrying two kits for BORG 7875 and 7835 users. This should be the economical solutions for motorized setup. Each rubber belt pitch perfectly fits a focuser’s rubber. I highly recommend these setup.

And at a customer place in China. All Star lineup of Japanese Astrographs.

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From left : BORG 107FL F3.9ED, FSQ-106,  Pentax 100SDUFII, FSQ-130 and Vixen VSD

 

 

 

 
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