We flew the DJI Mavic Pro

We flew it, here’s our thoughts. Out of the box, the yaw is too sensitive to us. Great for pictures, tracking with videos will be hard

Distance is great! Built up area and we flew 2.1km easily getting shots we never tried before with confidence.

Drifts quite a bit in little wind. Gesture modes works but we don’t think we’ll be using it often.

Wifi is a great alternative to control the Mavic but as the transmitter is already so small, dont think why you wouldn’t want to bring it out. It’s also useful for that 1 quick photo you need but do not need to go a far distance or need much control. Something like take off, go up to 100 to 200 meters, snap and land and be on your way.

The Mavic is available for rental at http://sg.camerarental.biz/

State of the hobby

It is end June 2016. A round up of what is the current status of multicoptors to us.

We’ve always love folding quads. Just look at our fleet. 30 builts later, we’ve partnered up and now flying Phantoms and Inspires do make us ponder and wonder.

The neatness of these ready to flys. Less hassle of packing things. We primarily fly for aerial videos and photos. Seldom fpv racing/ mini quads. We have a few (See our fleet) but its just for speed and fun mostly. It also means less things to be messing around with. Gains, programming knobs, it’s great knowledge but the hassle with so many China based made with crude documentations, don’t get us wrong, even leaders like DJI has manuals that seems written by school students but they’re getting there…slowly but surely.  

 

 

Being able to push out products in a lot shorter time frame and putting in technologies that they heard feedback from is critical. We all don’t need that new iPad or iPhone, that new Android tablet or new graphic card or cpu,it however makes your competitors play catch up.

Gimbal
Even powering up our good old Phantom 2 with a Hero 4, on a H43D seems a hassle now. You power up the Phantom 2, the Hero 4, connect your antennas to the Black pearl monitor, turn it on….

With the Inspire 1 or Phantom 4. Power up, connect iPad/ your phone, wait for GPS, fly, enjoy the scenery.

Auto Modes/ follow me, circle/ polar
It’s ridiculously easy with the DJI Go app for the POI or follow me.

We love to DIY. The smell of solder get us going and the ability to mix and match motors and ESC and learning the different Flight Controllers can be both fun and frustrating at the same time. If you’re the casual flyer, do not hope to purchase one but hope to have an aerial shot of your holiday or a one off shot of your loved ones having fun flying a kite or spending a day skating, consider renting as even buying one has some maintenance to be done. The least is the firmware updates for your drone and at times, all the bits that come with it, the batteries, gimbal, camera etc etc may all require update(s).

Another important point is, on tiny Singapore and with strict DJI No Fly zone implementation, we weren’t able to take on some past assignment with the church sitting on the edge but inside the no fly zone. On Google Map, go to 1.373587, 103.898441. From the church, you have to fly past 5 blocks of more than 12 storeys high buildings, cross a river and then a forested area of about 500 meters even then, you’re only at the edge of the airport. We needed the church tower video-ed and it’s no more than 20 meters tall…the solution? A DIY hexacopter.

There’s even guys who are certified circumventing this by disconnecting their GPS from their Inspire 1 and fly it in ATTI mode. Go google…

We hope one day, DJI will release what is in the DJI Go app to any Naza DIY-ers that they can build and making the geo-fencing a little more flexible.

Till the day comes and for all commerical jobs we received, seems like mostly, Inspire 1 and Phantoms prevail…for now.

How a crash looks like in Flytrex

 

Flytrex is a great, cheap and lightweight tool to help, to a certain extend see what may have gone wrong. It doesn’t however include input from your transmitter.

An example below from a crash, speed and altitude has a sudden drop within 2 secs. It’s regardless there is no other logging as the crash was caused by a broken propeller mid flight after reviewing the onboard video footage.

crash

Comparing, a normal flight does not have erratic lines or a sudden fall in speed and altitude.

normal

Simple analyzing of these cannot really help in determining if it was pilot input error but does help somewhat.

Build: ATG 12mm Alien

The ATG TT X4 12, this was a love and hate relationship. Built it with 10 inch carbon fiber propellors, didn’t fly well and we moved on after a couple of weeks to the Hobbyking Aliencopter 430mm. We eventually came back to it.

The plan was to converted it to carbon fiber booms, add some red LEDs on the rear booms, replace those holders with tarots ones if needed and continue using the QBrain 4-in-1 ESC.

 

F330 Build

The DJI F330 is one of the longest serving multicopter we have. It has been built, strip down, rebuild and stripped down again trying out different ESC and flight controllers. It is versatile and small but not too small to try things out, mount things on it, take it for just some crashing and rebuild.

Naze32 for the Besthobbymall’s Nighthawk250 is awesome.

 

After. #hobbyking #afroflight #naze32 #acro #abusemark #funfly hahaha long product name.

A photo posted by =In The Course Of Work= (@itcow) on

The Nighthawk 250 has another change and it’s to Naze32 this time. We picked up the Naze32 from Hobbyking. Bluetooth What you must buy, repeat MUST, when you get the Naze32 is the Bluetooth module and while at it, pick up a buzzer too, we reuse the one from our KK2 board. Once flying stable on default PID, all you need to do is change the rate for roll, pitch and yaw. Here’s ours, change from 0 to 0.50 then finally to 0.8 and you’ll be flipping with great fun without loose altitude. Screenshot_2015-04-14-21-46-25 Android Apps


The above is EZ Gui Ground Station. Pay for it, trust us. It’s great. The first one we tried was the Naze32/ MultiWII Configurator but it can’t read (as of 15 Apr) AUX 2 that we setup for Autotune.

Flip!

Added to the Nighthawk 250 build post.