Foxeer ready to release Legend 3 and Box cameras

FOXEER, the leading FPV drone related company trusted by thousands of FPV pilots announced that they will soon release Legend 3 and Box cameras.
Legend 3 is the new and updated version of the well known Legend 2 camera

Foxeer Legend 3

And the Foxeer Box is a new camera with a form factor similar to GoPro Hero Session camera. This form factor started being widely supported by the fellow FPV pilots and it seems to be the logical step to for the Foxeer to take.

Foxeer Box

More info regarding the release date and technical specifications on the Legend 3 camera will be available soon…

FPV Racing Propellers for PROs by Master Airscrew

Are you interested in some PRO propellers for the next season?
Master Airscrew has officially released their RS series of propellers.

From the manufacturer: Combines distinctive bat wing shape with an advanced airfoil design bringing the sweet spot performance and dynamics to every pilot. Compatible with most of the racing motors currently available, the RS propellers are torque forgiving but thrust relentless. 

The RS Propeller Series are designed for FPV drone racing and freestyle acrobatics. The special shape and airfoil are optimized for high speed / high thrust applications, proving these props to be the ultimate FPV drone racing tool.


They are manufactured from the highest quality  GLASS FIBER REINFORCED ENGINEERING POLYAMIDE specially formulated for Master Airscrew. The result – amazingly strong propellers capable of bringing out the best from your hardware.slide1

These babies are produced in California and are factory balanced. One set consists of 4 propellers 2CW, 2CCW

RS FPV RACING - 5X4.5 PROP SET X4 BLACKAt the moment you can buy these from the Master Airscrew website. The are available as 5X4.5 and 6X4.5 starting from $6.29 and $7.29. Available in black, green, orange and white.

If you want more power, there is a BN version they share the same platform as the RS, but are tuned for greater lift and ultimate top speeds. They will squeeze every bit of power from your motors and provide it to you in a tamed and controllable manner.

 

 

 

 

Eachine Chaser88 F3 FPV Racer ARF

Eachine Chaser88 F3 FPV Racer ARF

Yesterday I have posted an announcement from FPV Model that they will soon release the X Racer X1 and although I’m hyped about it there are some readers that would rather fly brushless micro than brushed ones.
It is a known fact that the brushed micros aren’t performing as good as the bigger brushless cousins. Some people find that acceptable and others don’t. On the other side, brushless models are a bit heavier and bulkier but that is compensated with their power.

Eachine Chaser88 F3 FPV Racer ARF
Please be aware that this model is ARF and it comes without a receiver, so you will have to buy it additionally. If you are using FrSky like me you should probably go with the FD800 or FrSky Ultra Light XM. The good thing with this model is that you aren’t limited to FrSky, FlySky and DSM only and you could use almost any receiver.

Another Whoop killer? Let me go trough the specs and sum some experience info that I could gather so you could better decide if this one is good for you.

e346afde-d87e-4f69-ba0f-b6a63efe26a3This is a compact 88mm brushless build that comes with 6A BLHELI-S ESCs that support DSHOT600, 1103 10000KV motors (note that the motors are rated up to 3S but the ESCs support only 1-2S), F3 mini flight controller with BF firmware (this is a customized version and you couldn’t upgrade it with regular BF firmware, you should use this instead), 800TVL CMOS camera with 150° FOV, 25mW 40 channel video transmitter and 2030 triblade propellers. The weight of the whole rig is 66.9 grams and it is not the lightest brushless of its size weighing almost double of the Eachine X73S (31 grams) which is also on discount and I’m planning to review it in future.

The package comes with 450mAh 2S 30C battery weighing 24.2 grams and USB charger

One month has passed since the people started receiving the first Chaser88 orders and as I can see there are plenty of review and flight videos. I have gone trough everyone that I could find and here are my findings so far:

  • By default, there is no uptilt on the camera so if you want to fly more aggressively you will have to come with a solution to tilt it up.
  • It is a bit heavy, around 95 grams with the battery and receiver, but there are ways to make it a bit lighter if you want like losing the led lights on the back and changing the AIO camera with a lighter one like this.
  • There aren’t prop guards and you will probably break some props while flying indoor, so make sure you have a good reserve batch.
  • The default configuration is set to acro mode which is not so good for beginners
  • The PIDs must be adjusted since there are noticable oscilations on lower throttle
  • The buzzer is not loud enough so good luck finding the lost model if it is further than 10-20 meters
  • Enough power for good punchouts
  • Up to three minutes of flight time with the provided battery
  • The battery is only 30C and not 40C as stated
  • The camera and FC are placed on a little rubber spacers that will shield them from vibrations
  • Some owners reported that you may use a 3S battery but it is on your own risk, since the ESC are rated up to 2S
  • Don’t expect a great range of the stock  video transmitter, you will start to loose signal on 20m distance if you try to go behind a tree
  • Nice robust, compact and crash resistant micro quadcopter that is not so good for indoor flying because of the lack of prop guards

There is a great deal on Eachine Chaser88 at the moment on BangGood. The regular price was $120 and they are selling it for $106 at the moment.

Here is a nice indepth review thanks to Drones Visual

 

X-Racer X1 from FPV Model

03.30.2017 UPDATE X Racer X1 already available on the FPV Model website.
03.15.2017 UPDATE the X-Racer X1 is in production. It will be available in about two weeks.

The micro fpv quadcopter market seems to be booming at the moment.
Few days ago FPV Model has announced the X-Racer X1 micro fpv quadcopter.

X-Racer X1This model is still in preproduction but from the pictures that I have got, it looks very similar to the Tiny Whoop.

It will come pre flashed and hopefully preconfigured with the latest betaflight, there is no info on the vtx strength but it is stated that it will be micro 48ch. There is no specific info on the FC that is used yet.
There is no info regarding the receivers that will be used, probably they will release FrSKy, DSM and FlySky similar to the ones used by other manufacturers.


One nice noticeable change is the placement of the camera in the front which may add some additional weight in front which is probably counterbalanced with the battery placement further back. But this saves the camera from crashes and also improves the aerodynamic properties of the model.

The case is available in several different colors.

X-Racer X1 available colors

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I will update this post once I have info regarding the release date and more specifics.

Racerstar Star20 4 in 1 ESC

Racerstar Star20 20A Blheli_S 2-4S Detachable 4 In 1 ESC first look

 

Racerstar Star20 4 in 1 ESC

Racerstar Star20 4 in 1 ESC

Star20 is the newest 4 in 1 ESC from Racerstar that for the first time offers a unique feature, each ESC is detachable.

I saw this item posted on BangGood and it seemed like a nice logical step forward in the 4 in 1 ESC development so I have decided to take a look and share my thoughts.
This is the long awaited feature for all fpv miniquad racers that are flying 4 in 1 ESC combos on their rigs either they want to have a clean build or they have some of the newer airflow optimized frames with thin arms.

I have seen several burned 4 in 1 ESCs and most of the times nobody cares to repair them so you have to throw it in the garbage even if only one FET is burned. They are a bit cheaper than buying 4 regular ESCs but it seems a waste of money throwing three working ESCs when only one is burned.

4 in 1 ESC separatedThis item is on preorder at the moment and looking at the photos, I’m not sure if the ESCs come soldered or separated (they probably packed with shrink tube). Either way, if they are separated it will be required to put a few blobs of solder in order to connect them and there is no delicate soldering required.
I think that this is the first 4 in 1 ESC of its kind and probably more will follow.

At this moment it is few bucks cheaper ($29.99+$0.34)than regular 4 in 1 20A ESC listed on BangGood from the same company.

I’m considering buying one of these since I’m planning a new build based on the X-Foot frame, but maybe I will have to wait for Racerstar to release Star30 30A 4 in 1 ESC in order to use it with some of the new powerhouse motors that are available on the market lately.

Update: It seems that FPV Model is already offering similar product X-Racer Quadrant 25A and it is in stock at the moment. The only downside is that this one is a bit longer so it may partially protrude out of the frame.

Eachine E010S 65mm Micro FPV Racing Quadcopter with 800TVL CMOS Based On F3 Brush Flight Controller

Micro FPV Racing Quadcopters, the new hype train that started as the winter was coming in the northern hemisphere.
After owning the Eachine E010, I have decided to jump on it and ordered this ARF kit.

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I have ordered this one from here, it is the Frsky version and this review will be regarding that one, I have no experience with the other versions except what I have read in other reviews and forum posts, mostly compatibility issues on Flysky (not compatible with FS-i6s R9B, R6B system and set your transmitter to AFHDS instead of AFHDS 2A)

Priced $54.99 as it is one of the cheapest micro fpv quadcopters, although you could spare few dollars if you look on Aliexpress for similar deals, but this seller seemed OK to me and I have decided that it is better to spend few bucks more than receive a broken or incomplete order.

The package includes:
1x Frame kit | 4x 615 59000 rpm ± 12% Coreless Motor | 8x Blades(2 Sets ) | 1x F3_EVO_Brush Flight Controller | 1x 800Tvl 40cH 25mW Camera | 1x 3.7V 45C 150MAH battery | 1x USB Charger | 1x Manual | 1x Blade removal tool

The build is good, similar to E010, the antenna seems a bit fragile so it is advisable to mod it in order to be protected in crashes. The flight controller is not F3_Evo but regular F3 which is worth nothing if you try to flash it with Betaflight or Cleanflight. This one was missing the dampening rubbers for the FC so I had to improvise and use silicon strip in order to minimize the vibrations from the motors and get top notch performance from the FC.

The Racerstar motors pack some serious punch for a build with this size and weight (26 grams with battery), unfortunately, such motors require a lot of juice and the battery lasts about 2 minutes so make sure you order plenty of batteries if you want to really enjoy flying. Fortunately, I have found that this micro quad could fly even with 500mAh battery instead of the 150mAh. The 500mAh battery tames it down so it is more suitable for beginners.

I have flashed it with Betaflight since I use it on all of the other miniquads that I own. It flies great, a bit sluggish compared to the brushless miniquads but this is a real indoor flyer, stable, precise and responsive. I can’t stop flying it trough my apartment if only I had few more batteries haha (never enough). The telemetry on FrSky works perfectly

Here is a link to the receiver manual

 

Look no further if you are looking for a micro quad, this is the best one the money could buy.
Here is a great video review made by youtube user AndyRc

Realacc Genius 215 4mm Frame w/ REVO F4 Racerstar BR2205 2600KV Motor RS30x4 Blheli_S ESC 5042 Prop

Realacc Genius 215 w/ REVO F4 Racerstar BR2205 2600KV Motor

Recently I have received the long awaited Realacc Genius 215 ARF package from BangGood.

Realacc Genius 215 4mm Frame w/ REVO F4 Racerstar BR2205 2600KV Motor RS30x4 Blheli_S ESC 5042 PropA really nice kit for a great price $116 at the moment of writing this post, it comes with 4mm true X frame which weighs 85 grams, Revo F4, RacerStar BR2205 2600KV Motors, 4-in-1 RacerStar RS30A ESC and RacerStar 5042 TriProp.

Before ordering this kit I have done some research to find some reviews of the components used.

The frame is almost exact clone of the QAV-SKITZO Dark Matter and it seems that these cloning companies have learned the recipe, every frame that debuts on GetFPV should be cloned 🙂

I have already ordered and reviewed Revo F4 FC and you may find a detailed review and wiring instructions here
This kit comes with 4-in-1 RS30A ESC V2 which is a proven ESC for simple clean builds on frames with super thin arms like X-Foot. These ESCs could easily handle most of the power hungry miniquad motors and in this case, they are more than enough, actually, I think that it may have been cheaper to use RS20A 4-in-1, but that is my opinion.

I have no real experience with the RacerStar 5042 TriProps, but I will surely gain some as soon as I complete and maiden this build.

There was already a great test video of the motors along with RS30A V2 ESC (not 4-in-1) thanks to Albert Kim

Conclusion: This is a great kit for the price, I would prefer a bit stronger motors and also it may have been cheaper if they have paired it with RS20A 4-in-1 ESC but all in all great package for the price, especially for the guys that are on tight budget.

I will post a flight video as soon as I maiden and configure it properly.

Cablecam and Ronin gimbal with one Futaba14SG

Recently A friend of mine bought a cablecam in order to use it with Ronin MX and he called me to complain about a problem that as I have learned most of the people using cablecams and Ronin gimbals have, they have to use two remotes, one for the cablecam and another one for the Ronin gimbal and they have to either use the cablecam with two operators or they need a table to lay down the remotes and work simultaneously on both of them like some sort of DJ 🙂

I have tried searching on google for solution but only found forum posts of users complaining that it is impossible task.

He bought the cable cam from ROTTOR TEAM website and received a FlySky FS-I6S transmitter with it, he had the RoninMX and a Connex full HD video downlink. Also, he owns a Futaba 14SG that he uses on a big X8 heavy lifter quadcopter. So I had three different remotes to work with and find a way to use only one transmitter.

Futaba 14sg transmitter with R7008SB receiver

I have started with the one that comes with the Ronin MX gimbal, I thought that it will be easier to add the two channels from the cablecam to the remote since there were plenty of spare channels. I was hoping that DJI may have done something similar to the  feature on the A2 flight controller where you can have multifunction PWM output channels F1-F4. Unfortunately, there are none (DJI please) and there is no way to map the spare channels on the remote to something useful.

I have continued reading the Ronin manual and there was part explaining that you may use custom remote that supports SBUS, so I said to myself, OK, fine I can try with the Futaba and R70008SB and maybe pair 2 similar receivers with the remote, one for the Ronin and another one for the cablecam, but I had only one receiver and there was no time to order and wait for the other one.
I have managed to connect the R70008SB on the D Bus port on the gimbal and control the gimbal with the Futaba on 12CH Mode but I had to find another solution.

Connex HD video linkThen I have remembered reading that you may use the Connex along with the Futaba to control the gimbal, without the need of an additional receiver. Here is a tutorial that explains how to connect and use the Futaba to control the Ronin gimbal.

I have gone trough the steps on the video and I had the Futaba control the Ronin in no time by using the training port, so one part of the problem was solved. Now I have had one R70008SB that was bound to the Futaba in 14CH Mode and I have plugged in the two channels from the cablecam into it taking care that I use the throttle channel 3 for cablecam movement and channel 5 for the cablecam limits since the only the throttle channel wasn’t used for gimbal control. After that I have powered the cablecam and voila, everything was working.

As I’m writing this article the cablecam is used on a local pop star concert, I have been there for a while in order to make sure that everything is working as it should.

Let me know if this article had helped you in any way and if you have any additional questions.

 

Revo F4 from BangGood.com – firmware update, wiring and configuration

Yesterday I have received the long awaited Revo F4 flight controller board from BangGood, also known as Flip32 F4 and Flip F4. I have ordered it to replace the old Naze32 board that I was using for the past 2 years.

Bang Good revo f4 review ratingIt is the cheapest board on the market and judging by the reviews on Bang Good it seems that there are no complaints about the quality, so I have decided to order it and give it a try.

There is no wiring diagram or manual, only small relatively understandable lettering on the back side and it, so I have done some searching and found that Ready to Fly Quads offers the same board for the same price, the only difference is that they have better description and more pictures of the board and also a detailed wiring description.

My board came with Betaflight 3.0.0 so before starting to configure it I have updated it to 3.0.1
The firmware flashing procedure is relatively simple, hold boot button, connect the board to usb and it should display DFU instead of COM port on the right corner of the Betaflight configurator, if not you should use Zadig in order to update the STM32 drivers. Please refer to this youtube video for the whole process of updating the firmware.

revo f4 wiringI have created the layout diagram on the right for anyone having problems understanding the existing diagrams that could be found on other websites. This is a bare minimum for my setup, no led control or current sensing only SBUS, motor connections, buzzer, VBAT, telemetry and powering the board from the motors rail (PWR).
I’m using X4R SB receiver that is soldered directly to the SBUS, no need for hacking into the receiver in order to get an uninverted signal. The board is powered with 5v from my PDB. VBAT gets the voltage directly from the main battery connector cables.
And I’m using UART3 TX port to send telemetry data to my X4R SB receiver, one important thing to note is that you cannot just plug the telemetry wire from X4R on to the UART3 TX port since it will not work. You should follow the instructions found here (X4R-SB solution is at the bottom of the page) and solder the wire on the SOT23 transistor leg. If you need the technical aspects there is a really good explanation on the link above or you can just find the transistor and solder the wire on the specified leg.

My board came with MSP enabled on UART1, you should disable that and enable Serial RX in order to enable SBUS working  with X4R.
And if you feel lazy and if you aren’t sure if you are setting the board right, here is a dump of all settings that should work with the wiring diagram that I have provided. Stock pids, stock filtering, nothing changed except the rates but you can reset them to defaults.

Let me know if you need any further help or if this blog post had helped you.

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The lucky owner of the Revo F4 flight controller is my modified QAV-R that had the top and bottom plates broken in a crash so I have had to convert it to nearly true X. Hardly waiting to have some more time to take it out on a test flight.

 

365 photo project with aerial twist

It has been a while since I have posted something here. Probably because I was waiting for something important or maybe because I have spent much more time with my family and outside than by my computer.

There are few other blog posts that I plan to write in near future like the one for my relatively new stone balancing hobby and pottentionally some reviews of the equipment that I’m using for this project.

For the past 9 days I have posted one aerial photo per day on Instagram, so yesterday I have decided to start a 365 project but done only with aerial photos. For those that need an explanation, it is a photography project that requires you to take a photo a day for a whole year. It will be an interesting challenge to go out and take an aerial photo almost every day with exception of the days when it will rain or snow. For such days I will have to have a backup solution, either an aerial photo taken another day or I will use that day for checking the equipment and have a picture of that. Since this is a big commitment I will start with 30 days first and see where will that take me. I would be glad to hear your thoughts.

Here is one photo that I took today, not so good weather but I will have to work with what I have

Skupi archaeological site

Scupi is an archaeological site located between Zajčev Rid (Зајчев Рид ‘Rabbit Hill’) and the Vardar River, several kilometers from the center of Skopje, in the Republic of Macedonia. A Roman military camp was founded here in the second century BC on the site of an older Dardanian settlement.

All photos are shot with GoPro 3 strapped on my QAV210 freestyle mini quad (drone). There is no gimbal and no GPS positioning so it requires some patience and a bit of circling in order to frame the perfect shot.


I certainly hope that at some point in time I would manage to get some sponsors that will help me replace some of the old parts on my quadcopter.

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Feel free to visit my Instagram profile here and check my progress.