Starry Night Pro Plus 6
I received my Version 6 upgrade to Starry Night this week - spent the extra dough to move up from Pro to Pro Plus, which includes the AllSky images. Installation took up about 11gb of hard drive. First run showed that it did not save any of my preferecences such as rquipment, log entries, favorites, location. I managed to find some of the files in my user library prefs folder, but was only able to recover the equipment details. All of my favorites and log entries are gone. No big deal, I guess, but it would have been nice.
First impressions are somewhat favorable, but not mind-blowingly so. I like the AllSky CCD Mosaic, even though the resolution suffers at high magnifications. Speed seems a little sluggish compared to SNP5 on my 1GHz Powerbook G4. There are new star chart print features, which let you print a three-pane chart (one main chart, plus two finder charts); this could be useful. I like the Markers and Outlines feature which identify lunar and planetary features like craters, mare, and other surface details; however, even though multiple features can be selected, only one name shows at a time. I'm pretty sure this is not the way it's supposed to be. In any case, the high resolution lunar surface images are very good, and should make identification of craters in my lunar photographs easier in the future.
A big problem was discovered while testing the remote control of the Sirius mount. I gave it an indoor test run on Friday night and found some serious problems, not the least of which is the software's inability to point the scope to whatever is at screen center - it either points somewhere else, or gives me a "Below Horizon" error message. Other little things like loss of connection between Mac and Sirius, disappearing cursor during scope control, andz inability to change default horizon graphics, were also noted. Reported all of this to SN Tech Support, they are handing it off to the scope interface guru. Hope to have an answer next week after the holiday. I don't remember having all of these problems with SNP5, but I never really used it much for remote control, either. Still, I'm fairly certain that, at the very least, SNP5 was able to slew to screen center...
Better graphics aside, I'm not sure the upgrade was worth the $120 it cost. A full list of all upgrade features can be found here.