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First post-update test flight

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision Discussion' started by Pull_Up, Nov 22, 2013.

  1. Pull_Up

    Joined:
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    Location:
    South Oxfordshire, UK
    EDIT: Video from this flight - http://youtu.be/lm5yGvy8FEE

    Finally got some flyable weather this morning so I could test out how the Vision flies for me, post firmware updates. Weather this morning was cold (3 degrees C) with light winds. I have updated all firmware (including Tx) and have enabled Naza mode. I did a Tx calibration after the firmware update.

    My Nexus 4 updated itself to KitKat (Android 4.4) this morning - the good news is the Vision app works fine with that. Out in the field I found the satellite lock to be pretty quick - about 7 seconds for the new NAZA led sequence to show a good lock (no flashing reds). I hadn't flown from this field before and this was the first time I tried acquisition since the updates so that's encouraging. However, when I logged onto the Phantom's network the app screen showed "Invalid Battery". Now I never had any of the battery issues before, and my contact pads and pins look nice and clean, so I powered down, removed and reseated the battery. Powered everything up in the appropriate sequence again and no further invalid battery message (I wonder if there was a bit of condensation at first from taking the Vision out of a warm-ish car and out into a cold field?).

    I did a compass calibration as this was to be the first flight post-firmware, no problems there. When I powered up the motors I noticed that my battery gauge on the app was behaving oddly - going from 98% to 60% then to 78%. I thought I had encountered the issue that has been reported elsewhere, although there was no alarm and no warning lights. Nevertheless I cut the throttle straight away and I power cycled the Vision and restarted the app. Everything came up nicely, and after my usual 1 minute head-height hover (I always do this after I have made any changes like a calibration or software changes) I took her for a spin.

    The GPS hold, to me, seems even more solid than it was before. I didn't notice any other changes to flight characteristics in GPS mode. I flipped the switch to ATTI mode and immediately the Vision drifted with the light wind - but you can see from the preview image on the phone how much smoother the video looks when it's not fighting the wind to hold station. I have set the bottom position of S1 to initiate RTH but I didn't test that this time. The location I was in wasn't conducive to testing range or height to any great degree, but I wanted to keep the Vision in relatively close for a first post-update spin in any event.

    I messed about a bit with IOC. Home lock worked nicely - pull back and wherever she's pointing she comes back towards you, left moves left in relation to you, right is right, etc. I could see the course lock was also doing what I assume was intended, but I have not yet read up on how to set the orientation on that so didn't fully test.

    At one point I had video problems for some reason - I was still getting telemetry data and the video recording time was still ticking along but the preview image on the phone was frozen. I went back out to the app main menu then back into the camera again - everything working nicely. May have been the app getting confused, but the cure was quick and didn't interfere with the recording. It wasn't a loss of signal as that would have reported as such and the telemetry would have stopped. (Incidentally there is an option in the app settings to tell the Vision what to do if it's recording and the wifi signal is lost).

    Flight time down to 20% was about 21 minutes, but I was hovering almost the entire time testing the various functions and had about 5 minutes total powered up but no motors running doing calibration, spinning props on and sorting out the initial errors. The ambient temperature won't have done any favours either. Once airborne there were no errors, spurious battery % readings or any alarms at all until the 20% threshold I had set was hit.

    So in summary, flight characteristics are as nice as ever, with GPS hold seeming to be even tighter than before (my perception, anyway). Atti mode is much smoother for video, but watch your starting position - even a light wind will push her along quite well. You can use the wind in your favour to get some nice smooth tracking shots. My initial errors cleared by closing down everything and starting again. IOC works, can't see myself using it much but nice to have the option. I'm a happy camper thus far - just need my second battery to arrive and have even more fun (apparently the first round of spares are now shipped from China - at least to UK first tier dealers who got their orders in when the parts list was published)!
     
  2. Pull_Up

    Joined:
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    Location:
    South Oxfordshire, UK
    My last outing with the Vision was at a friend of my son's place. Two 7 year olds and I were in their back garden for over an hour having great fun and spending almost all that time with the Vision in the air. The boys both got to have a go at piloting and they even had a successful landing each. We used the Vision as a leaf blower and took lots of aerial photos of the house. We only came in as it was getting cold and dark. Is having another battery expensive? Yes. Is it amazing having nearly a whole hour airtime with only a 2 minute pause mid way to slap in another pack? Yes. Am I going to run out of space on my 16GB sd card next time out because of all the extra footage available? Probably!

    As a bit of perspective, it costs me £74 to fill my car's diesel tank from the red line to brimmed. A Vision battery cost me £106. I know which I feel gives me most fun and best value! :lol: