What's new in SharpCap this week... 20th June 2022

All the latest news about new features and improvements to SharpCap
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What's new in SharpCap this week... 20th June 2022

#1

Post by admin »

Hi folks,

another Monday, another update :)

SDK Updates

This week we have SDK updates from Altair and Player One to fix bugs and support new models. Note that there appears to be an issue with Altair 115M camers in both the new SDK and the previous version when the camera is used in 14 bit mode. Please use SharpCap 4.0.8927 or earlier to work around this issue - we are expecting a proper fix for the current SDK soon.

New Camera Brand Support

This week we can also announce support for Astroasis cameras. Currently they are selling a 290M model with more to come, see https://www.astroasis.com/en/

User Interface Tweaks

Some updates to the UI bring the new dark theme (including dark window title bars) to a few remaining windows including the log window and the windows shown to choose custom camera resolutions and to enter capture profile names. This change should also help resolve issues with the font size being wrong for these windows in some cases on Windows 11.

New Features

There is a small new feature - 'Ghosted Image Alignment', which you can find in the Tools menu. This allows you to pick a previously saved image (must be the same size and bit depth as the current image) which will be superimposed on the current image. This can be used to perfectly align the mount with the location of the previous image.

On the same subject of aligning with previous images, I've added a new sequencer block, 'Goto the sky co-ordinates of <ImageFile>' - this automates the same procedure of going to the same position in the sky as used in a previous session. This approach works differently though, as follows

* SharpCap loads the selected image file and plate solves it. If it is a FITS file and contains co-ordinates in the headers, these are used as a starting point for the plate solve procedure
* SharpCap will perform a GOTO to the co-ordinates that came from the image file
* SharpCap will also record the orientation of the image file - if you have a rotator you can add 'Plate solve and return image to saved orientation' next in your sequence to get the orientation right.
* If you want perfect alignment, also put a 'plate solve, sync and re-goto' step into your sequence

I am hoping to add a way for this function to be selected outside the sequencer for next week - probably a new entry in the Tools menu.

As usual, a range of small tweaks and bug fixes.

cheers,

Robin

PS. In writing this I realised that I may not have accounted for J2000/JNOW in the new 'Goto the sky co-ordinates of <ImageFile>' step. I will check and fix for next week if required.
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Re: What's new in SharpCap this week... 20th June 2022

#2

Post by Butterbelly »

Sounds good - just about to renew my license so very timely - keep up the great work.
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Re: What's new in SharpCap this week... 20th June 2022

#3

Post by Menno555 »

Oh wow, that Ghosted Image Alignment sounds very useful Robin!! Can't wait to try that out :)

Edit: just tried it with the Folder Monitor Camera and works great. Again, very useful.
Also for when making a mosaic I think? Much easier now to judge the overlap needed.

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Re: What's new in SharpCap this week... 20th June 2022

#4

Post by admin »

Hi,

I hadn't thought about using it for mosaics... I guess you would look at the features on the left of the ghost and try to make sure they were visible in the right of the image. Would it help to be able to offset the ghost by say 80-90% in one of left/right/up/down - that would let you line up feature to get the mosaic set up I think...

cheers,

Robin
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Re: What's new in SharpCap this week... 20th June 2022

#5

Post by Menno555 »

Hi Robin

I think it indeed could be useful for mosaics, yes. You can visually determine on the spot if it's all right or not. I tried previously with coordinates and that either gave too much, too little or just partly overlap.
I think 90% maybe is doubtful, depending on how much dithering there is and/or guiding/tracking deviation? But a 20% overlap edge should do the trick. I believe the generale "rule" is around that 20% too?

Menno
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