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Flying in a circle?

Discussion in 'DJI Ground Station' started by FASTFJR, Jun 17, 2014.

  1. FASTFJR

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    Sorry if this has been asked before. But before I spend $200 I want to make sure I can do one thing. I want to be able to circle a fixed object (in the center) and have the front (camera) end of the P2 aimed at it the whole time. Can it been done?

    Thanks
     
  2. Diesel31

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    The short answer is no.

    You can sort of come close to it, but GS can't do what you want it to do exactly. You're describing a point of interest feature. Hopefully, a future firmware update will remedy that. For now, the closest you can do is to use the circle template that has 10 waypoints and place your subject in the center. The Phantom won't point to the center, but the 10 waypoints connected adaptively will create a circle flight pattern so you might see your subject in the periphery. Also, it's not as smooth as flying in a perfect circle. It was kind of choppy. Maybe the circle pattern I used was too small causing the angles to be steeper?

    With that said, I very much enjoy GS and use it often. It's limited, but its basic features make it worthy of the $200 price tag.
     
  3. Gizmo3000

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    I believe I read that the higher end Wooking and A2 systems can do it automatically, as well as some upcoming kickstarter drones.

    But once you've gotten some flying skills, it's entirely possible to fly around an object while facing it, by carefully controlling the sticks. It might not be perfectly smooth tho, as the DJI Tx is a bit sensitive in rudder/yaw.
    a better TX with dual rates can also help (by reducing stick sensitiviey) but it still wouldn't be automatic.
     
  4. GearLoose

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    Flying in a POI circle would be a great feature but until that is implemented, how about this: fly to a distant waypoint, then switch to ATTI to regain control, then to GPS to hover, then either fly in a circle or do a 360 yaw/panorama, and then... resume the waypoint flight.

    Have you tried this and if so, how do you resume the waypoint flight? Would it be possible to just hit "pause" on the GS or does that give you full control, or just put the quad into a GS hover?
     
  5. IrishSights

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    You can achieve a half baked POI but not using the GS and it does have some safety drawbacks.

    * Fly right over your object.
    * Reset your homepoint.
    * Fly away more than 10m from the object.
    * Now use roll either left or right.
    * The P2 will then circle your object.
    * So all you have to do is concentrate on using yaw to keep the craft pointing at the object.

    The danger being your homepoint is different and potentially disastrous if you need to avail of RTH.

    A proper POI in GS would be nice though.

    Sent from my Galaxy Note 8
    Edit: I missed this bit out (thanks Doono) You gotta be in Naza mode and switch to Homelock for this to happen. :)
     
  6. Doono

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    I can do this! Spent lots of time practicing maneuvers. It takes control not to fly off and film :) But, if you spend the time, it's amazing what you can do.
     
  7. 4wd

    4wd

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    In practice this has little benefit over simply moving left or right while yawing in sync.
    You still have to do that when you have reset the home.
    Also I find the reversion to course lock when close to home means you often need to be rather further away from smaller objects than you want. (e.g. a car/people)
     
  8. wkf94025

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    I have given up near-term hope that DJI will provide a quality POI function for Phantom anytime soon. My recommendation for those that want smooth circular pans is to get a Futaba, load Ian's v4 profile, and practice, practice, practice. With the stick desensitized, rolling right while yawing left, or vice versa, can give you a pretty smooth arc with practice.

    Love the idea of programmatic POI with good UI, but not holding my breath that the Death Star will provide any quality functionality here anytime soon.

    Kelly
     
  9. wkf94025

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    IrishSights,

    How smooth is this in practice? I like the idea, and will give it a go NEARBY one of these days. :D

    Kelly
     
  10. IrishSights

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    I agree and with Doono too. I do it by much practice. The sensitivity of the yaw is the biggest problem to smooth POI. I'm thinking of doing a mod to give better yaw for this. Im more than a bit wary of this as I'm a nervous wreck after my camera tilt potentiomter mod!

    Sent from my Galaxy Note 8
     
  11. FASTFJR

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    Thanks all for the anwsers, its too bad DJI doesn't have their stuff together yet. My flying skills are fine, the issue is I want to fly around a lighthouse (top of it) which is 200 ft tall. Its going to be real tough whatever skills you have. I might just need to take a look at the 800 and the A2
     
  12. LittleKway

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    This is an interesting topic ;)

    Haven't tried this yet but what if extensions of a couple of inches were mounted on the sticks and therefore rather than just confined to controlling by finger & thumb lower down, you could pinch higher up and therefore produce a more sensitive action ?

    Something like a short piece of stiff tubing.

    Now I am off to try this out.

    Anyone done this before / does this make sense ?


    Thanks
     
  13. jerrymac12000

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    Short answer is YES, it can be done. As others have said before; practice, practice, practice. You should be in the GPS mode to prevent unwanted drift. Approach the target from the side rather than straight on. That makes one less set of movements of the control sticks as needed. Move the left stick slightly to the left while contining with right stick in the forward position. As the craft starts ro turn, slowly move the right stick gently to the right position. Continue to do this for the complete circle. I am assuming that the left control stick in the left position produces rotation to the left. Some people change the control stick function of the transmitter ans the movements are reversed. You MUST rely completely on your FPV. If you are eye-balling the flight, your depth perception WILL be off.

    Try the flight around around a large tree that is at least 100 feet away from you. You will see what I am saying. It it easier said than done. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE. Show us the video when you are finished.in
     
  14. dragonash

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    im not nearly a pro, but i can tell you from experience that its hard.
    And when you have slight wind, it tends to mess up your circle. Especially with the whole compass issue!
     
  15. wkf94025

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    Agree with JerryMac12000 advice and technique. And for those of you that are trying to eye-ball the arc via VFR or screen, I can tell you that in my experience goggles are the ONLY way to achieve circular Nirvana, at least until GroundStation has native POI added. I find the total immersion and lack of outside distractions critical to smooth arcs around a point of interest. The earlier post of circling a lighthouse 200 feet up suggests that pilot is trying VFR. With goggles, the elevation (and for that matter distance from home) of the POI is irrelevant.

    I also find a programmable radio that lets you desensitize both sticks, but especially yaw, to be critical. I think the earlier suggestion of physically extending the left stick will help a bit, but if you're serious about quality vids, get a programmable radio. Futaba rocks for me, but I don't think they hold a patent on programmability.

    Kelly
     
  16. syotr

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    I have considered modding my transmitter to add two buttons near each stick. Pressing the button would bridge a resistor across either side of the potentiometer to acheive the minimum yaw and roll. You would press a pair of the buttons to make a circle, keeping the camera pointed to the center.
     
  17. sheldrake

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    This is why proffessional camera operators make 1000 per day. It is a skill to create a "compound pan" shot. The speed of the turn has to match the trajectory speed. I find that a speed of 6mph is the most effective. I hold the Forward stick on the side of the base of the stick, that way no yaw can be introduced. And then i match the speed with my turn. De sensitizing, as well as being able to lock the stick position in place, would be a great solution. Sure a POI feature would be amazing, and we work with sliders that maintain the lens on the same spot as the camera travels, but this is only for table top work. With all these fully automated camer moves being asked for , how ill we acquire real piloting skills?
     
  18. FASTFJR

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    A professional doesn't need to fly a perfect circle. Those rigs have a separate person operating the camera
     
  19. sheldrake

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    Depends on the rig and the budget. And yes, even with a pilot and cam op, if the circle isn't perfect and the cam op doesn't pan slow and smooth , the take won't be worth ****. That's why decent ops make 1000 per day
     
  20. wkf94025

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    I think the point is that slow and smooth doesn't need to be geometrically perfect to be a quality take. A smooth eclipse or arcing outward a bit can still be very pleasing to the average viewer.