Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

Compass calibration: when/how and what sequence?

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision + Discussion' started by rwebcon, Sep 3, 2014.

  1. rwebcon

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2014
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Phoenix Arizona
    I’m running Phantom V2+ in Naza mode and have a question on compass calibration sequence.

    Do you start everything up as stated in the manual and immediately do compass calibration, then wait for 6 or more GPS satellites and then fly?

    Do you start everything up as stated in the manual and immediately do compass calibration, shut the phantom down, restart the phantom, wait for 6 or more GPS satellites and then fly?

    Do you start everything up as stated in the manual wait for home point to be established wait for 6 or more GPS satellites, then do compass calibration, then fly?

    I’m not sure just when and how to do compass calibration since the manual does not go into details.
     
  2. UrAwFuL

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2014
    Messages:
    622
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Three reasons (that I can come up with at the moment) why you should do compass calibration.

    1. When it's forcing you to.
    2. When you're in an entirely different area. (Ex: Travelled for more than two hours)
    3. When the Phantom is hovering in circles.

    You should either get flashing red lights (meaning you failed) or straight to GPS indicator (RRRG, RRG, RG, G) meaning it passed. It's usually set to go right after that, but you're more than welcome to power-cycle to be sure.
     
  3. Mako79

    Joined:
    May 16, 2014
    Messages:
    3,413
    Likes Received:
    567
    Location:
    Sydney Australia
    4. if you have added something to your phantom like a tracker.
    5. if your car has subwoofers or large speakers
    6. if you have disconnected the compass (to change landing gears). The screw driver might have a magnetic tip.
    7. if your mod in the assist is outside of 1200-1600

    Also with UrAwFul's point 2, I don't compass dance if i'm travelling north/south. I don't think there is a need as the declination would be minimum.

    Depending on how quickly I want to get airborne,
    Once in a while, I sometimes take off with little or no sats in low wind conditions. I use ATTI to get some height and keep my eye on the Radar Distance. If the distance in the radar changes from NA to 0.0, it means I have a home lock. Once HL is found I then switch to GPS mode. I can then do airborne HL and CL resets to avoid tall trees if RTH is activated.
     
  4. DesertFlyer53

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2014
    Messages:
    630
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Ridgecrest, CA
    This one. ^^^^^
     
  5. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    7,737
    Likes Received:
    3,451
    You do your compass calibration when you have a new Phantom that you want to fly.
    You calibrate the compass before anything to do with GPS.

    This post explains what it is all about ...
    viewtopic.php?f=27&t=22435&p=205776#p205776
     
  6. rwebcon

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2014
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Phoenix Arizona
    Thanks for all the input but the sequence of how to do the calibration is still the question. I do believe to be safe you should calibrate before each First flight in current location.

    Since my first post on this subject I have talked to people who build all models of DJI and here is their option on the subject. Do the normal startup and after you turn on the phantom do the compass calibration. Turn off the phantom, it has stored the current compass location info. Turn the phantom back on and let it go through all its startup procedures in particular home point uninterrupted with current accurate compass information. If you still get drifting there are other problem you need to look at like broken compass sensor or issues inside the Phantom itself.

    Does the sound reasonable? Anyone else follow this compass calibration sequence?
     
  7. Panamon Creel

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Messages:
    229
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Mexico
    Personally I do the calibration only if I see trouble with position hold or if I traveled really far from the last calibration point
    If I calibrate I do the dance with the phantom let it get the first sat lock then power it down and back up and then do my standard check before starting my mission.
     
  8. DesertFlyer53

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2014
    Messages:
    630
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Ridgecrest, CA
    Interesting info. I have been doing the compass dance after all the start-up sequences complete and I have the slow flashing green lights indication my P2 is ready. I've never had any issues. I don't know if it really matters...
     
  9. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,244
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    Done it twice on my P2.

    Once when new, second time after replacing the OEM r/c receiver with Futaba.

    Traveled as far as 600 miles (Fla. - N.C. and back) since the second time.
     
  10. Mori55

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2014
    Messages:
    1,993
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    NJ-USA
    No reason to do it all the time. Unless you go quite a distance away.
     
  11. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,244
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    It's not that simple...

    Unless you don't consider 600 miles 'quite a distance'.

    There's likely not any quantifiable condition other than on-the-spot a/c performance upon relocation.
     
  12. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,244
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    I sooooo agree.

    There are many similar paranoid type rituals described within these 'pages'.
    Assigning success or failure to coincidence rather than statistical validity (i.e. logical fallacies).

    However, I do not wish to insult or minimize others as I believe 'to each his own' and 'if makes you happy'.
     
  13. Mori55

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2014
    Messages:
    1,993
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    NJ-USA
    Ok sorry , if I go to another area a couple of miles away I'll do it. I think many people are compass calibration crazy. Every flight , really ?
     
  14. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,244
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    Hey, were cool M-55!
    Just sharing my experience... As they say: "Your mileage may vary". :)
     
  15. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    7,737
    Likes Received:
    3,451
    A couple of miles is nothing and would not necessitate re-calibration.
    It is possible to travel 600 miles and more without needing recalibration at all (in some situations). But you have to understand what calibration is doing to know when/if it is required rather than just doing it like some ritual.
    All the details are in this post ...
    viewtopic.php?f=27&t=22435&p=205776#p205776
     
  16. Mori55

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2014
    Messages:
    1,993
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    NJ-USA
    I do notice with my + I get calibrate compass message more than any of my other naza equipped quads.
    Also noticed with my other nazas I would get sat lock faster.
    From reading this forum the calibrate compass message comes up rather frequently.
    Seems to happen especially I've been using the assistant. Same spot I've had all my phantoms and 450 sitting doing the samething
    And never had this happen as much. Don't get me wrong it flys fine , just seems to loose calibration more than I'm used to.
     
  17. mmn

    mmn

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2014
    Messages:
    141
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale, FL USA
    When I first started I had this issue every time I fired it up. Got to thinking about it. I was launching from a concrete heli pad at the local RC field. In an 'aha' moment I realized that heli pad probably has metal concrete reinforcement in it. I quit launching from there and the problem went away.