Review - AstroAid v3 iOS App
Posted: 30 September 2017
This is an update to my previous review of AstroAid, an app that shows you the expected Field-of-View (FOV) when viewing/imaging many objects with your telescopes and accessories. Version 3 is a free update to users of version 2 and is available on the Apple App Store. The new features are:
Perhaps the most notable thing in the version 3 update is that it is now a 64-bit app. Support for 32-bit apps ended with the recent iOS 11 update, which meant that you could not use version 2 in iOS 11. So I was thrilled when I learned that a new version had been released. (Thanks to Bruce for the heads-up on the new version.)
Another new useful feature is iCloud support for hardware you have marked as "Owned" or added as "Custom" in AstroAid. I marked some hardware as "Owned" on my iPhone. After several minutes the same owned hardware appeared on my iPad.
Here are some screen captures showing AstroAid v3.0 on my iPhone 6s Plus
Lots of Useful Catalogues
M4 with 24mm UWA Eyepiece (portrait mode)
M4 with 24mm Eyepiece (landscape mode)
The iPad is also supported and takes advantage of the larger display. Here are two screen captures of AstroAid v3.0 on my iPad Pro 9.7":
M57 with 24mm UWA Eyepiece (portrait mode)
M57 with 24mm UWA Eyepiece (landscape mode)
I discovered a bug in version 3.0 of the app. When I tried to edit data to add my Nikon D7200 DSLR there was no way on the iPhone to type a decimal point for the pixel width and height:
I was able to input decimal points using the iPad:
Here is M4 with the DSLR Field-of-View marked by AstroAid on the iPhone 6s Plus::
I contacted the developer, Paul Rodman, about this iPhone decimal point bug. The bug was quickly fixed in the version 3.1 release:
An exciting new feature added in the 3.1 release is the addition of the Solar System to the Catalogues:
Here is Saturn with a 9mm 100° eyepiece and the Moon with a 24mm UWA eyepiece as shown on my iPhone 6s Plus:
And Jupiter and the Moon (Crater Tycho) with a 5.5mm eyepiece on my iPhone 6s Plus:
Are the FOV displays accurate? For the eyepieces the FOV shown seems fairly accurate. However, I discovered a bug in displaying the FOV for the Moon in my DSLR. The red rectangle was too small by about half of what it should have been, although the FOV dimensions displayed in the upper righthand corner were correct. This will be corrected in version 3.2.
I am glad to see AstroAid resurrected from the death of 32-bit iOS apps. If you had purchased version 2 you should download version 3.1 (or 3.2 when it becomes available with many more goodies). This app is critical if you want to see how objects will appear in your eyepieces or your imagers. Highly recommended.
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