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  1. GadgetGuy

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    GadgetGuy's Final P4 Flight

    I decided to give the P4 one final test to see if I could squeeze any more battery life out of it by flying only in Atti mode, which is the mode DJI used to arrive at their 28 minute flight time.

    I have already given up on the P4 GL300C transmitter, and, instead, again paired the P4 with my FPVLR v2 modded GL300A with 3W boosters, just like on my second flight.

    Once again, I could not top off the P4 battery above 97% before launch, as the new charger refuses to top off a slightly used battery, unlike the P3P charger. No matter whether I turned on the P4 battery before connecting it to the charger, or after connecting to the charger, in both cases, the battery immediately shut itself off, and stopped the charging process.

    So, starting with the P4 battery charged as high as I could at 97% upon launch, with OAS turned off, front LED's turned off, channel 30 set on the hack, 4 Mbs set on the video transmission, I took off and immediately switched into Atti mode, flying in Orange instead of Green throughout the flight. During bootup, the gimbal made disturbing squealing sounds, but it has done that every other time, too, with no apparent side effects.

    I flew as I always have, at full throttle, and speed was between 30 and 40 mph throughout. 2 to 3 second video dropouts started at the 3 mile mark, while flying at 40mph, which meant I had to stop until it recovered each time, but in Atti, it just drifts. No active braking, so no battery power consumed, like it would have been, in P-GPS or Sport mode.

    However, battery was being consumed faster than I have ever seen before. I quickly turned around and headed for home. On the way back, the gimbal briefly locked up and stayed tilted at 45° for several seconds, while the app displayed a "maximum gimbal angle exceeded" warning! Very disconcerting! I finally landed with only 7% remaining battery and had to fight hard to keep the aircraft aloft, during autoland after 10%, while maneuvering to a safe handcatch. I had flown 39,175 feet, but my total flight time was only 12 minutes, 19 seconds! She's a speed demon, but at a huge battery burn, and props are often in the frame, ruining the video. The "maximum gimbal angle exceeded" error is a new one (which also ruins a continuous video), and should never happen in Atti mode, with no braking going on. Never seen anything like that on my P3P.

    1. My first P4 flight was 16 minutes, 14 seconds and 30,000 feet total with the stock TX in all modes.
    2. My second P4 flight was 14 minutes, 40 seconds and 40,750 feet with my FPVLR in P-GPS mode.
    3. My third and final P4 flight was 12 minute, 19 seconds and 39,175 with my FPVLR in Atti mode

    Flight times are getting WORSE with each flight, not better, and even Atti mode cannot improve them!

    DJI promised flight times exceeding 28 minutes in Atti mode, but is now actually delivering 12 minutes in all Atti mode! Even TWO P4 batteries in parallel won't deliver 28 minute real world flying times on this aircraft. Also, the crappy video transmission from the aircraft cannot even be fixed with a transmitter mod.

    Because I was so demoralized after this last P4 flight, I pulled out my W323 P3P, with its battery mod, and hooked it up to the same FPVLR setup that I had just used with the P4.

    I then flew my P3P directly over the same route as the P4, and just kept going, and going, and going! Flight time was 25 minutes, 37 seconds, over 66,000 feet round trip, and I still had full video and control at 5.2 miles away, and returned with 15% remaining battery.

    Final Conclusion: My W323 P3P rocks! This particular P4 sucks! My DJI 7 day return period for manufacturing defects ends tomorrow. Shipping the P4 back to DJI in the morning! Already have my approved return shipping label! Plenty of manufacturing defects, between the defective battery, the defective charger, the defective control, and the squirrelly gimbal! I only needed one. I found four!

    See also: GadgetGuy's First Flight Impressions of the P4
    and: GadgetGuy's Second P4 Flight Impressions
    and: GadgetGuy's P4 Refund From DJI
     
    #1 GadgetGuy, Mar 24, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2016
    siawai, NRJ, Mark The Droner and 6 others like this.
  2. dirkclod

    dirkclod Moderator
    Staff Member

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    Now I know ;)
     
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  3. Kman

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    Did you try flying in auto mode instead of selecting a channel?

    I don't think it's fair to run full speed and expect 28 minute flight times. You wouldn't expect a car to go full throttle and get the advertised mpg rating.
     
  4. Phylodog

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    So you're exchanging it for another P4? I didn't think DJI would refund if it had been flown?
     
  5. GadgetGuy

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    Nope. Full refund. I will not be denied, no matter what lies the DJI Customer Service center tries to claim are "policy." This one will go to the mat, if necessary! They will be honoring their written website return policy, whether they want to or not! This P4 is a lemon!
     
    #5 GadgetGuy, Mar 25, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2016
    dirtybum and Romans109 like this.
  6. Toph

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    What did you use to pull those files? I retrieved my DAT files but can't seem to get that level of data. That's exactly what I'm looking for
     
  7. GadgetGuy

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    Auto will not use the channel hack. Obviously, if the P3P is set to the same fixed channel 30, and has no issues, it's not the channel, but the P4 that is the problem!

    Full throttle on the P3P still generates 15 minutes. The P3P is advertised as 23 minutes. The P4 is advertised as 28 minutes, but delivers 12 minutes in the same Atti mode DJI claims will deliver 28 plus minutes of flying !:rolleyes:
     
    #7 GadgetGuy, Mar 25, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2016
  8. GadgetGuy

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    Not sure what you are asking for.
    These figures are directly taken from the Flight Logs displayed in the app.
     
    #8 GadgetGuy, Mar 25, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2016
  9. Toph

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    Sorry! Browsing on my phone and posted on wrong thread! Time to go to bed
     
  10. GadgetGuy

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    ;)
     
  11. hionbusa

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    Return days are based on delivery date not purchase . .
     
  12. Bocephus-73

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    I'm glad you're doing a lot of meticulous work exposing the massive disappointment known as the Phantom 4 --- you honestly deserve a medal in here for all this detailed analysis.

    I feel ashamed when I see other people in here living inside their own delusions about the P4 being a fantastic machine that eclipses the P3P in every way. Nobody with half a brain is going to believe that when cold, hard facts tell us otherwise. Stop floating in fantasy and get grounded in reality, I always say.

    I might utilize Amazon's liberal 30-day full refund return policy to see if the P4 is as horrible with range and flight times as you have discovered. Gut feeling tells me all your statements will be proven correct about this over-hyped product. :(
     
    aenbacka, Romans109 and GadgetGuy like this.
  13. GadgetGuy

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    Indeed! Just demand to have your refund request for multiple manufacturing defects (defective battery, charger, transmitter and gimbal) processed within 7 days of delivery, and get a return shipping label, even if not returned within 7 days! Don't take "no" for an answer! Preserve and assert and demand your rights to a return!
     
    #13 GadgetGuy, Mar 25, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2016
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  14. hionbusa

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    I think you can just walk to the Apple store and get a refund if the order was placed on apple.com
     
  15. GadgetGuy

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    If you have never owned a P3P, and never intend to fly beyond VLOS, and don't mind spending $1400 for a drone that has half the battery life and half the range of the original W323 P3P which can be bought for under $700 used, go for it. Otherwise, buy any P3P, and get the "Professional" version, instead of the crippled, overpriced, overhyped P4 "Enthusiast" version.
     
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  16. GadgetGuy

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    Yup. Some of foolishly ordered directly from DJI. Apple gives you 14 days to return with no questions asked! Amazon is 30 days! DJI is only 7 days with a manufacturing defect, if you have flown the aircraft! Shame on DJI, for lying to customers trying to return, telling them they cannot return, if they have ever flown it! NOT TRUE! Every P4 has multiple mnufacturing defects, based upon the claims on the box! The battery is defecive and will not deliver 28+ minutes. The transmitter is defective and loses signal after 1.3 miles, and won't ever deliver 3.1 miles! The gimbal squeeks and squeals like a stuck pig, upon bootup, and during movement of the P4 after turning on the battery, and gets stuck in flight at a 45° angle, generating "maximum gimbal angle exceeded" errors! Lastly, the charger, unlike the P3 charger, won't let you top off a 95% charged battery, even if you turn it on before or after plugging it into the charger. It immediately shuts off, and stops charging.
     
    #16 GadgetGuy, Mar 25, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2016
  17. Bocephus-73

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    I've enjoyed my P3P since July 2015 and don't see any need to spend $1400 to get an inferior product. I pride myself on being an informed consumer, and not a brain-dead spender like so many Apple and DJI fan boys seem to relish being these days.
     
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  18. GadgetGuy

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    Same here! Original W323 P3P with the GL300A transmitter is still the best aircraft ever made by DJI. They set the bar too high! Everything else is just chump change by comparison! Add a battery mod and a transmitter mod, and your P3P will even run circles around the Inspire 1 at 1/3 the price!
     
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  19. Shep

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    I don't get it guys. Why the need to put down another man's purchase choice? If you are happy with what you have, isn't that what matters?

    I am personally grateful for all the research and comparisons that were done.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  20. peterepeat69

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    I am correct in saying that new technology gets worse, when China make new batteries they lower the MAH below what they advertise, I've been ripped off that many times in other aircraft I should know.


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
    Kman likes this.