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I know a few members of the group have experience with the Celestron CG-5 GT , and was wondering if anyone uses the All-Star feature . I experimented with this feature last night ( indoors) and in principle it seems very cool , but how well does it work in practice ? I use a 12.5mm ( 60 x ) illuminated eyepiece for the 2 + 4 alignment procedure , and have had pretty good luck . Typically the 2 + 4 procedure is good enough for exsposures two minutes and under . The question I pose is this , is it unrealistic to think the All-Star alignment will improve on this ? It is a forgone conclusion than in the near future I will begain autoguiding . I also understand the better grasp I have on my fundamentals , the more success I will have down the road . Thank you for your time .
David

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David, I'm not sure what the question is. I'm under the impression that the All-Star align was the name of the software (if you will) that Celestron uses for alignment. Then in that there is the 2-star align, 1-star align, etc. The two star is the most accurate then run the polar align routine (sometimes you might need to do this twice for a good PA). How old is your CG5 is it the older firmware in the hand control? Marc
Marc , thanks for your reply . My CG5 is only six weeks old so i assume i have the current firmware . I do a two star alignment , then four calibration stars , at that point you can begin imaging or do an additional procedure in which you slew to where a star would be if your mount was 100% aligned with the NCP and by making mechanical corrections to the alt/alz adjustments you ( acording to celestron ) optimize polar alignment . I was wondering if this additional step was advantageous ? Celestron uses the trademark " All-Star " as the name for this final procedure although in the hand controller i think it is referred to as " align mount " under the align menu . thanks again for your time .
David
David, you'll have the latest firmware in your HC. Once you get going w/ the AP you'll find the polar alignment is essential. One thing that helps is to get the mount roughly aligned (by eye) to Polaris and it's easier once you get going to put it back in the same spot every time,say you use your driveway, once you find a good spot mark where each t-pod leg is and use the same spot. This makes the process faster each time. I'll put in a couple links you may or may not have seen. The yahoo cgem site (a lot of info is the same for both mounts). Under "files" there is a good pdf Enhanced PA Routine. It fills in all the words Celestron left out in their owners manual (their manuals leave a lot to be desired). The other link is the Nextar Resource site. I linked the download page, down near bottom are pdf's on the stuff stored in the HC ie star lists, asterims etc.Somewhere, I'm pretty sure on one of those sites are two star maps w/all the HC stars plotted on it. Makes it nice when you're looking for align/calib stars from your site (instead of guessing). If I run across it I'll link it, somebody else here probably knows where it is. Marc
http://www.nexstarsite.com/Downloads.htm
http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/CelestronCGEM/files/
I used it initially. Now I use PHD assisted drift alignment described in this website and have had outstanding results using a CG-5. http://njstargazer.org/PolarAlignment.asp
Thanks Marc and Steve , fantastic resources !
I use it all the time. I'll get the mount roughly aligned by hand then a really accurate 2-alignment star + 3-calibration star alignment, then the polar alignment feature. I'm ready to image at that point. The software polar alignment feature is common to the CGEM and CGE-Pro (which I have) as well. Usually at that point I'm good to go. If I have a lot of time I'll drift align with PhD at the end of that to make sure I'm spot on.

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