Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

Sign up for a weekly email of the latest drone news & information

big improvment to f40FPV range no extender .5 miles

Discussion in 'Phantom FC40 Discussion' started by J.James, May 31, 2014.

  1. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Got some time to test out the new FPV wifi range on the fc40 using a kindle fire moded to take external antennas. Nice increase in range. So far based on some of todays preliminary results flying in heavy wifi area. with out any mods to the kindle best I was ever able to get was 320-350 meters fpv which was a tiny bit better then i could get if using my hawking repeater which topped out at about 300m range. But today's results just blew even trying to use a wifi repeater and all the cumbersome wires and extra battery's that gives less range then the kindle did all by its self with out any simple mods to it. and the added antenna mod dont look bad either or get in the way of any thing.

    I did 4 flights out till i lost single on my camera then came back to home on each flight. 2 flights using just 2 different antennas on the kindle then I did two more flights using a wifi signal amplifier between the kindle and the antennas on the amplifier.

    flight 1 Moded kindle fire FPV range test with 6Dbi omi directional antenna. 1,184feet or 360m so tiny improvement over non moded kindle. But it gets better.

    flight 2 Moded kindle fire FPV range test with 11Dbi directional panel antenna. 1,612
    feet or 491m very nice jump in range but it gets even better. on flight 3

    flight 3 Moded kindle fire FPV range test with 6Dbi omi directional antenna. and wifi signal booster added. got 2,640feet or 804 meters. or 1/2 mile This so far is the Best range I have yet to see any one get from there fc40 camera for FPV.

    flight 4 Moded kindle fire FPV range test with 11Dbi directional panel antenna. and wifi signal booster added. got 1926 feet or 587 meters. I think the range was lower on this flight due to the directional antenna not being pointed right being in the tests with out the amp this antenna had better range then the 6 dbi one did.

    I have some more tests I want to run still with another antenna then i'm going to mod the FC40's camera its self to be able to use a real antenna on it and see how much more the range can be improved.
     
  2. IIVII

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2014
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    27
    Location:
    The Empty Quarter
    Re: big inprovment to f40FPV range no extender .5 miles

    Hey J.James

    great results .. the 11Dbi 5.8ghz/2.4ghz panel sux on 2.4ghz .. my 3dbi omni performed alot better .. add Alfa APA-M04 7dbi Panel antenna to the mix .. it's only $5 , u'll thank me later :D

    IIVII
     
  3. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Re: big inprovment to f40FPV range no extender .5 miles

    I'm also not sure if the 11dbi one I used is even tuned for 2.4Ghz I have seen some conflicting info on if it is or not. Some say it is dual band just at 8 dbi when used on 2.4ghz But the manufacture says its only for 5.8ghz but they do make a 2.4ghz 8dbi version that is in the same exact shell. But as far as using it for 5.8 on my transmitter I got awesome flight distance out of it. I was able to fly out to 1.3miles and it never lost signal at all and only was limited by me not setting the naza max radius any higher then 2000m I was at about 2100m flying in atti mode and I switched to gps and it moved back to bring its self in to the 2000 limit. Tho I thought it was worth trying on the 2.4ghz for the fpv But I noticed it had a very narrow radiance to it on 2.4 compared to when using it on the 5.8 On the 2.4ghz with it I had to keep it pointed right at it. Tho when flying I just had to have it ruffly facing the direction I was flying and seemed to be a pretty wide beam.

    Thanks for the tip on the Alfa 2 4GHz 7dBi I have been considering trying one of them. But wasn't sure if it would be any better.

    I'm also thinking of trying my hand at making a set of clover leafs in 2.4ghz Being this whole antenna thing is becoming really interesting to me in its own right. I like learning how to make more and more things.
     
  4. Beario

    Joined:
    May 9, 2014
    Messages:
    355
    Likes Received:
    64
    Location:
    Hovering at 400 feet
    Re: big inprovment to f40FPV range no extender .5 miles

    Just curious where you got them for $5? I bought 2 from Rokland @6.57 each and free shipping that's the best I could find, but I need a few more.

     
  5. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Re: big inprovment to f40FPV range no extender .5 miles

    ya IM wondering the same thing cheapest I have been able to find them so far was around $9or so on ebay

    APA-M04 7dbi Panel also wondering If any one knows if there is any difference between the APA-M04 and the APA-M05 pannel antennas other then o5 being square compared to rectangular shaped APA-M04 I'm picturing the rectangular shaped APA-M04 putting out a radiance that spreads out wider to the sides more then it does up and down
     
  6. IIVII

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2014
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    27
    Location:
    The Empty Quarter
    Re: big inprovment to f40FPV range no extender .5 miles

    sorry guys , i bought mine few months ago and it was around $5 .. i looked up the same item on ebay but it's no longer listed . the cheapest i found today is $4.99+shipping .

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Alfa-Network-PA ... 2a35e49f45

    and here's another one listed for $8.95 free shipping .

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Alfa-7-dBi-gain ... 19be0fd207

    and this one was sold for $1+ shipping :mrgreen:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Alfa-APA-M04-2- ... 3a90107598
     
  7. Beario

    Joined:
    May 9, 2014
    Messages:
    355
    Likes Received:
    64
    Location:
    Hovering at 400 feet
  8. themase

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2014
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey J. James,

    I just picked up a used Kindle Fire and external antenna today and was looking to forward to modding it similar to what you did. Any progress on creating a video and\or pics of your setup?
     
  9. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    ah no I ended up getting a phantom 2 vision about 2 weeks ago and got so busy trying to repair that pos to even be able to try and get it flyable and have spent all my free time messing with that. tho I should get around to doing the kindle pics cause I also got some new parts in yesterday so I can show what needs to be done. easier now to.
     
  10. darwin-t

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2014
    Messages:
    513
    Likes Received:
    5
    Word of warning on those Fires. Be VERY careful with the jack you use to charge the battery. It is VERY delicate.

    I have bought enough Fires, I think I'll try a used Android tablet and hope it has the same antenna connector inside. I don't want to hack my Fire, since it would be awkward using it around the house with an antenna installed.
     
  11. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    ya a lot of the insides on them looked pretty delacate. It was a lil dicey trying to the get the hole on the case to. The only spot there was even enought room to try and fit the connector is right by were the ribbon cable that goes to the touch screen is and had to get real close to it with sharp tools with out hitting it and wreaking it.

    maybe the android if its an android tablet might even have the normal sized mini ipx connector instead of the ultra mini one that the kindles have that is about twice as small as the normal regular mini ones. I searched hi and low to find a pit tail with the ultra minis and could not locate any other then taking the wire off an existing kindle antenna. and a solder on rp-sma connector.

    But it actually looks pretty good and the antenna can be folded and tuned to the side so it goes across the top when using it in the house. It even works good up to a few 100 feet with it off tho I'm not sure if that's good to do or not. But I did have to punch a hole threw the case my old lady has for when shes using it. But it even looks good enough that she even thinks it looks ok and like its supposed to be on it to begin with.
     
  12. Beario

    Joined:
    May 9, 2014
    Messages:
    355
    Likes Received:
    64
    Location:
    Hovering at 400 feet
    My Android does have the mini ipx connector. Modding the antenna in my Lenovo tablet was very easy the pigtail plugs right in just like when I was modding the remote controller. The Lenovo has 2 antennas, a primary and a backup, so upgraded both with pigtails and now I can use a variety of antennas on there.
     
  13. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Sweet. That maeks thing a lot easier when its got the right connector.
     
  14. Beario

    Joined:
    May 9, 2014
    Messages:
    355
    Likes Received:
    64
    Location:
    Hovering at 400 feet
    Just wondering if you tried one of those ALFA antennas with your Kindle fire. Somehow, they seem to work better than the 14 dbi panel antennas that I bought. I am using an ALFA on the controller and one of my Lenovo tablet that I modified and it is more than enough range for what I am doing. I am almost regretting buying all of thie extra equipment. The bonus of this setup is that it is portable and I do not have to take a tripod with the repeater and antennas setups.
     
  15. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Right now i'm just using a cheapo 3 dbi antenna on it with very good results
     
  16. Beario

    Joined:
    May 9, 2014
    Messages:
    355
    Likes Received:
    64
    Location:
    Hovering at 400 feet
    I tried a few different antennas on this setup. Only drawback to the panel antennas is you have to face the quad, but the range is amazing. The omni antennas I have 5, 6 , and 9 dbi. all very good range. I am trying to make this as light a setup as possible now with the longest range so I can travel easily. Do you know where to get really good boosters?
     
  17. mikey

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2014
    Messages:
    146
    Likes Received:
    6
    Newbie question. Just received my fc40 today. How do you guys know how far away it is while flying? Am I missing an app or maybe you have modified yours to achieve this? Or people are just guessing by line of site?
     
  18. zerodb

    Joined:
    May 21, 2014
    Messages:
    49
    Likes Received:
    0

    Everyone is either using some additional hardware like a flytrex or they're judging based on landmarks and measuring it after the fact. There's no built-in distance readout on the FC40.
     
  19. zerodb

    Joined:
    May 21, 2014
    Messages:
    49
    Likes Received:
    0
    I know the Kindle Fire has really strong wifi performance right out of the box; is it just the stock antenna config or is the radio superior?

    I guess what I'm wondering is whether the Fire with an external antenna would be better than, say, a Nexus 7 with the same antenna?

    I've got one of each and I'd really only like to hack one up rather than messing with both of them.
     
  20. J.James

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,882
    Likes Received:
    162
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    From what I heard from those that have used a Nexus 7 it seems to be just as good as the kindle. and even with the stock set upon the kindle fire had very good wifi range. Before I even boosted it with an external antenna mod.