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Forget the Futaba 14SG if you want range !

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Discussion' started by Fanti, Feb 26, 2014.

  1. Fanti

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    Upon recommendation from friends as well as several posts in forums, I upgraded my P2 to the Futaba 14 SG in the hope of having a better range and more stable transmission.

    Tried everything, all works good, BUT no range. Usually at around 900m FS kicks in, sometimes if lucky I get 1100m, but no more. Was sick and tired of it, especially after spending this amount on supposedly good RC system. I hooked up the standard DJI transmitter and now have a beautiful 3500m range.

    So if someone wants extended range, thinks twice about the Futaba.
     
  2. freyjoel

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    I agree. I'm up to 2000 meters now with the stock transmitter and haven't had it go into failsafe yet. The only good thing about the Futaba seems the ability to slow down turning movements. But I'd rather have the confidence in the extended range with the stock transmitter.
     
  3. hjscm

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    I'm sorry for that. i got tired of trying to tell people to just leave the stock rx, but everyone kept telling me how bad it is. telling me that fly aways are common. i have had best results going out about 2+ miles with 8fg and stock rx. I'm glad you got that far with stock tx. i couldn't get that far with mine.
     
  4. Fanti

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    How far did you get with yours ?
     
  5. goldfishrock

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    I was getting terrible range after fitting an R2008SB receiver (using a T8J Tx) and found that if you replace the stock antennae with some Futaba 400mm extensions it makes a world of differnce. I've been way out past 1k with no sign of loss of signal.

    I posted here http://www.phantompilots.com/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=7573#p67649 with details
     
  6. Magnumb

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    I can't say this is a helpful thread, obviously some trouble shooting needs to be done. Saying that 14sg's are bad for range is frankly, a bit too polarized an opinion.

    I can tell you this. You haven't solved the issue (haven't looked at all possibilities) if you are having range issues with that radio. Perhaps it's the receiver (you didn't mention if you are using the stock one, or the really nice one that comes with the 14sg)

    To say based on your personal experience that if you want range, avoid this transmitter is misleading. I don't care what transmitter brand you are using.

    With that said, please keep in mind the Phantom transmitter and receiver is made by Futaba, adding in a higher quality version of both should NOT result in crappy distance. Hence the logic hole.

    Please explain what you have done to fix the issue, what the instal was like, how the antennas are mounted (90deg to each other?) because I would hate to see people summarily dismiss this transmitter based on your limited experience with it. Your friends were not lying. It's an absolutely excellent unit by any measure.

    Cheers
     
  7. goldfishrock

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    As I said, try replacing the antennae with the Futaba 400mm ones. Place the tips of the antennae as shown in my post and it will almost certainly fix your problem.

    Futaba is generally considered the gold standard in the aero RC market. One of their flagship products is not going to be a piece of junk. If yours is, can I suggest you return it and get a replacement.
     
  8. DesertFlyer53

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    I just ordered the Futaba T8FGS system, mainly for the transmitters programability. If the Phantom rx is made by Futaba, is there a reason to change it out? What's better about the R6208SB receiver over the stock Phantom receiver?
     
  9. goldfishrock

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    I think most of us who have changed out receivers have done so because of some of the 'fly-away' stories that have come out of the forum or because it's generally thought there in increased reliability, range and functionality. I think the P1's suffered particularly badly from fly-aways and the receiver was generally blamed. Of course if you fit something with 8 or more channels there are possibilities for future expansion of the P2 platform.
     
  10. DesertFlyer53

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    Interesting. But I have a P2. Different receiver with 2 antenna.
     
  11. goldfishrock

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    That's what we are talking about..... I was just explaining about the legacy of the P1 fly-aways.
     
  12. DesertFlyer53

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    Do you know where I can pick up the Futaba 400mm antenna's? Tower Hobbies doesn't have them.

    What post are you referring to?
     
  13. ladykate

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    The post link does not give a link to a source that I could find. I would like to know how to get the extended antenna, too. I'm currently running the stock antenna on a 550 and they fit OK but I may change out my P2 and I want alternatives. BTW, I am using a 8FGHS and it works swell. I don't go for longer range (no real place to do it where I am) so I can't verify a range problem.

    I CAN verify that the Tx is much nicer than stock. Much finer control and lots of monitoring ability along with multiple models so I can use the single Tx for everything. The stock Tx works, though - not knocking it. I bought the 8FGHS because my stock F550 had a Devo 7 and it has a terrible reputation. Even with that, I was able to use it with no problem - it was just not an 8FGHS.
     
  14. Ozon8r

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    As I have said elsewhere, I went from an average range of 2500m with stock to 900m with 14sg same field and conditions weather wind etc.

    I am going to reinstall the stock rx and bind with the 14sg and see what range I achieve. Then I am going to remove stock rx and replace with r7008sb and 400mm antenna to see the results (waiting for shipment of 400mm antenna from futaba direct). I'll share results by next weekend global cooling in Colorado permitting.

    Despite the experienced range penalty of the 14sg, the functionality and control within the range is awesome. Gimbal control and panning using program mix and dual rate control is pretty slick.

    I bought the futaba 14sg for both functionality and range. I suggest if you are satisfied with the stock functionality, don't bother upgrading. However, if flight and gimbal control are more important especially for filming, consider one of the futaba products.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  15. ladykate

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    I found a method of getting the antenna extensions - disregard the 'boat only' caveat:

    You can order these directly through your local authorized Great Planes hobby store, or from our Futaba Support line at 217-398-8970. The part number and suggested retail price is:

    HSP79766 ANT BOAT ONLY 400MM $12.13
     
  16. hjscm

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    changing because of fly aways does not make any sense. i doubt fly aways have something to to with tx rx. fly aways started before p1 even came out. people were having fly aways with the flame wheel and discovery along with all other quads when using the naza controller. all these quads were using other radios than the dji ones. this is exactly what i am talking about. everyone on here wanting to change out because they here of fly aways not realizing that they have been happening before they got into this and buying a p1. let us know how you fare with using stock rx and 14tx. myself i have been a futaba man since i started flying helis a long time ago. this was before we even had gyros. you think they are hard to fly now you should try without any mixing or gyro. so i am all for futaba but just don't think people need to be doing something that they don't need to do. if you want to do it then that is different and i say go for it to experiment. i would also make sure the antenna from futaba are at 90 degrees. might help a little bit. i was getting about 1 mile on stock tx before i binded to the 8fg.
     
  17. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
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    @hjscm: Not all fly aways have the same root cause. I have never had a P1 but it is evident that a decent percentage of the flyaway issues were related to limited TX/RX performance. Even DJI pretty much admitted that interference could cause the FC to think it was being given a sustained input when the RX was overpowered by an erroneous signal. They have made changes to the firmware to counter this problem. Anyway, the P2 has a stock TX/RX which is completely new and based on FASST so I would agree that there is less reason to swap if preventing fly aways is your only objective.
     
  18. Ozon8r

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    Just a quick updated on range with the 14SG...

    I reinstalled the P2 stock rx and reconnected to the Naza controller today while leaving the Futaba R7008SB rx that came with the 14SG inside the shell but disconnected.

    Out on the same range with the stock rx and the Futaba14SG, I easily reached 2200m and felt I could go further. However, the temp as 14° F and the battery was dropping voltage fast. Winds were calm and my altitude was about 120m above relative position of the home point (5300') with 95% humidity. This range is wide open country with very few trees and away from RF activity. This is the same range and similar conditions in which I reached 3400m with all stock P2 gear (FPV gear excluded).

    I am encouraged by the results knowing that the 14SG is providing powerful enough signal to allow 2200m distance. On a warmer day with calm winds, I may try to push out to 3000m with 14SG bound to the stock rx.

    Once the 400mm Futaba antenna shows up, I'll install on the R7008SB rx and post results.

    PS. It took me a while to figure out how to bind the 14SG with the stock rx. I found on another forum that the only way I could bind the stock rx to go into the 14SG Linkage/System and changing mode to Fasst-Multi mode. With the 14SG on in transmit mode, push the bind button on the bottom of the P2 until the solid red light emitted from the button starts to flash. Once its bound, the light emitted from the bind button turns green on the P2.
     
  19. DesertFlyer53

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    My Futaba T8FGS arrives monday. Do you think I should just leave the stock P2 receiver installed?
     
  20. Ozon8r

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    I would. I'm thinking about building a 550 and if so, will use the futaba rx that came w the 14sg as the rx. I just have to pull it off the sticky tape inside the p2.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk