Meade Instruments Corporation
Telescopes · Binoculars · Microscopes


 
Meade Pictor XT-Series CCD Autoguider/Imagers
 Section 19: Technical Support
IMPORTANT NOTICE! Never use a telescope or spotting scope to look at the Sun! Observing the Sun, even for the shortest fraction of a second, will cause irreversible damage to your eye as well as physical damage to the telescope or spotting scope itself.
If you have a problem that cannot be resolved using the troubleshooting sections in this manual, please contact:

Customer Service Department
Meade Instruments Corporation
6001 Oak Canyon
Irvine, CA 92618

Toll Free (800) 626-3233 (USA only)
Phone (949) 451-1450
Fax (949) 452-1460


When you report a problem, please give the following information:
* Your name, address, and phone number
* Meade model number
* Serial number of the unit
* Description of the problem
* Status of the unit when the problem occurred
* Any steps you took to resolve the problem, and the results.

If problem relates to PictorView XT, also be prepared to give:

Computer system configuration, including:

* manufacturer,
* type (laptop or desktop),
* CPU (386, 486, Pentium),
* amount of RAM, (if known)
* hard drive size, (if known)
* video resolution (640x480, 800x600, 1024x768...), and
* operating system: Windows 3.1, WFW 3.11, Windows NT, or Windows 95.

Section 20: How do I...

How do I... Connect the camera

1. Screw the guiding or imaging barrel into the front of the Pictor XT.

2. Take the end of the power cord that has the screws on it and plug it in to the back of the Pictor XT, then tighten the screws. THIS MUST BE DONEBEFORE PLUGGING THE POWER SUPPLY INTO THE SUPPLY.

3. Connect one end of the coiled autoguiding cable to the socket on the Pictor XT marked autoguide, and the other end to the CCD socket on the LX200(for use with other cameras, see Section 1). If you will not be doing autoguiding, you may skip this step.

4. Connect the flat serial cable to the socket on the back of the Pictor XT marked RS-232. Connect the other end of this cable to the serial plug. If you are using a 416/1616 SCSI cable, connect it to the SCSI connectors instead.

5. Connect the serial plug to the comm port (or serial port) on your PC. If you are not sure which port is the comm port, check the user's manual for your PC.

6. Plug the power cable into the wall socket.

7. The Pictor 208/216XT display should read P1, the change to FF, and the button will begin blinking.

8. If this does not happen, unplug the power from the wall, check the cable connections, and try again. Remember, NEVER unplug the power to the back of the Pictor XT unless it is unplugged from the wall first.

9. Start the PictorView 208/216XT software and choose Connection, then Connect.

10. The Pictor XT should read PC on the display, and the PictorView XT Status Bar should show On Com x @ baud rate, and the CCD temperature.

11. If you are using the LX200 features, be sure to have a serial cable running from the second serial port on your PC to the RS-232 port on theLX200.

How do I... Change the connection settings

1. Select the File Menu then the Set User Preferences option. The only parameters you will need to change are baud rate and comm port.

How do I... Print my image

1. Select the Printer icon on the Status Bar or select File, then Print or Print Preview.

How do I... Process my image

1. See the section on Viewing Images for information on processing images. Also check the Imaging Tips section. Also look at the CCD Tutorial.

How do I... Record information about my image

1. See the Image Information section in Image Menu topic.

How do I... Save my image

2. Press F2 or select File, Save or File, Save As for a new image. See File Menu Options for more information.

How do I... Set the camera temperature

1. The camera temperature is automatically maintained to the setpoint you selected in the Set User Preferences window, however, you may override this feature for the current session by selecting the Camera Menu, then the Set Temperature function.

How do I... Stop an exposure in progress

1. If there is a countdown timer with a Cancel button on the screen, you may press Cancel to stop the exposure in progress. You may also press Escape if the image is downloading and you wish to cancel the download.

How do I... Take an exposure

To Take an Image:

After connecting to the camera (pressing the X button on the toolbar), follow these steps:

1. Select an Exposure Setup from the list box on the toolbar.

2. To edit exposure and calibration settings, click the Edit Setup icon to the right of the list box.

3. Click the Camera icon.

4. A countdown timer will appear while the camera is exposing.

5. When the camera is done, a percentage bar will appear as the image is transferred.

6. The new image will appear.

7. Press the up and down arrow keys to increase and decrease the image background. Press the left and right arrow keys to increase and decrease the image's dynamic range.

8. You can enter log information by selecting Image, then Information.

9. Some information is already pre-filled.

You may process the image in various ways, including combining multiple images, sharpen/unsharp, contrast, and other transformations (see Image Processing).

10. If you wish to save this image, select Save As from the File Menu or click the disk icon on the Toolbar. (or press F2).

How do I... Use the autoguider
Note that this feature is separate from the standalone autoguiding features of the Pictor XT. (see manual Section 1).

To Autoguide:

1. Select Camera, then Autoguide, then select the autoguiding mode. PictorView XT supports two modes of autoguiding: Guiding on the brightest object in the field of vision, and guiding on a selected object.

2. For guide on brightest: select guide on brightest. The camera will take an exposure, determine the brightest point, and begin guiding on it.

3. For user guide: The Pictor will take an image using the current Exposure Setup and display it, then prompt you to double click on the point to guide on. After confirmation, the camera will start guiding on the selected object.

4. While autoguiding, a display will appear that shows each successive correction made by the Pictor. This will continue until you press the Stop Autoguiding button.

Note: On the 416XT and 1616XT, no corrections are shown on the PC. In addition, the 416XT and 1616XT only support one mode of autoguiding; it is accessed by either autoguide option.

How Do I... Undo Something

PictorView XT is a primarily a field capture program, and although it does provide substantial image processing capabilities, it does not support the multi-level undo features available in high-end, dedicated image processing software. However, this does not mean that you are out of luck. There is a way to undo everything in PictorView XT; provided that you save your raw images before processing them.

There is a single level undo function that will undo the last item performed. If that is not sufficient, see the following:

There are a several things that are easy to undo: setting the brightness, contrast, and sharpness are three of them. Any time you create or open an image, these values are set to 0. If you change them and decide that you don't like the change, simply enter the Image, Process Image window again, and set the sliders back to 0. (you can also enter 0 directly in the textboxes).

To undo anything else, it is important to save the raw image file first. If you do not, you will not be able to undo some things. To undo anything, select Close from the File Menu. The system will ask if you want to save your changes. Since you are trying to undo, select no. The image disappears(closes). Don't worry! You haven't deleted the image. Now select the File Menu again, and you will see the name of your raw image file near the bottom with a number beside it. Select that item and your original image will be reloaded.

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