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How safe is the Flytrex ?

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision Discussion' started by jengo, Dec 29, 2013.

  1. jengo

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    I have only had my PV2 for about 2 weeks now and would love to get some extra data from it. Mostly interested in altitude and speed. I wish it would write this information to the SD card, even if it only appended to a file every 1 second. Maybe they will add this in the future.

    Anyway, so I noticed a few people using the Flytrex. I looked up the howto video and it shows the unit being plugged into the controller as a middle ware device. How risky is this ? Is there any chance this could cause my GPS to freak out and cause a crash ? Will this void my warranty ? (Not even sure if they have one anyway)

    I emailed them with my concerns but they never responded.
     
  2. gunslinger

    gunslinger Moderator
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    I'm not sure about the warranty, but I doubt that's a concern as I just watched a video from DJI showing how to upgrade the original Phantom. This involved not only cracking open the shell, but soldering.

    I installed the FlyTrex a few days ago and between a video showing how to open up the main shell and a short FlyTrex tutorial, it's quite easy to do.

    Here's the video on opening up the shell that was created by "Pull_Up"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLgwyoJvqM8

    Here's the step by step on the FlyTrex website that I believe was also created by "Pull_Up"
    http://www.flytrex.com/support/flytrex- ... tallation/

    The only hairy part of the whole venture is selecting where you're going to cut out a notch in the lower shell to make room for the cable. I'd suggest using a small square file and a very sharp X-acto knife. If done carefully, even this isn't all that scary...

    I've had three separate flights with FlyTrex installed and it has has absolutely no impact on the flyability of the Phantom. The metrics obtained from it are amazing and the level of support from FlyTrex is something I haven't seen in years.

    -slinger
     
  3. Driffill

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    Check your junk mail! It's rare for them not to reply . .

    The way the GPS works won't be affected by the flytrex . . The cable is basically a double adaptor (like you'd use on a power outlet ect) it allows the flytrex 5v (or 3.3v, I've never checked it) and the GPS-Tx / GPS-Rx and it simply logs that data to the memory card . . .

    It's so simple and ingenious it makes you wonder why DJI didn't think of it!
     
  4. jengo

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    The actual installation looked pretty straight forward. That part is easy and not too worried about it. Just worried about any chance of interference with the controls and GPS functionality of the PV2.
     
  5. gunslinger

    gunslinger Moderator
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    Like Diffill said... It's simply sitting between the GPS unit and the controller and capturing the metrics to a micro SD. The cable is basically a "splitter" that allows the data to get to both the controller and the FlyTrex unit. Pretty elegant, really...

    -slinger
     
  6. jengo

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    Hmm, I guess the only way this could cause an issue is if the Flytek pulled too much power during it's own operation. I wonder what the chances of that are.

    It is so **** simple for DJI to add. If I only had access to the firmware code or even the iOS app I could do it my self :p This can be done 100% in software.
     
  7. gunslinger

    gunslinger Moderator
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    I totally agree. There are so many metrics being captured that it kind of amazes me that DJI hasn't taken the opportunity to spin that off into their own software that would allow you to take advantage of it. DashWare does a real nice job of allowing you to overlay the info onto your video, though...

    Frankly I wasn't crazy about adding FlyTrex either, but there was no way I was going to pass up on the ability to capture that info and utilize it to my own ends... :D
     
  8. jengo

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    The other thing I had thought about was running a packet sniffer on the wifi connection. Most of the important data is being sent back to the phone. Just need to intercept and record it.

    Side note, I also wish that altitude was record in the EXIF data for photos.

    In the mean time, I ordered the Flytrex and will be extra careful during the first few flights. Really looking forward to being able to create overlays on my videos.
     
  9. gunslinger

    gunslinger Moderator
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    Can you say... WireShark? :D
    Excellent Idea.
     
  10. Driffill

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    I've been wrestling around with the naza Firmware (I come from a history of car ECU flashing :) the naza is nothing more than a uncracked ecu in my eyes lol) the naza would need available memory to log the data and I don't think there is much spare.

    Another way of logging the GPS data is using an "automatic antenna tracker" and while they are quite pricy, to just log what we want isn't. Basically a small chip is connected to the GPS, or separate GPS, and sends a signal that is transmitted via the audio channel on a videoTx, that data can be decoded at the groundstation (it needs to, to point the antenna that direction) but if the audio channel is recorded, the GPS data should be able to be pulled from that in the case of a flyaway etc!

    If you wanna see some data overlaying have a look at this [youtube]http://youtu.be/Sllk_N1qAe0[/YouTube]
    Tht was made using a program called race render2, but it will accept the flytrex files etc also
     
  11. gunslinger

    gunslinger Moderator
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    race render2? I'm all over checking that out tomorrow. Nice!

    I also own a Mitsubishi 3000GT VR4 that's been mildly modified, and I'm a heel and toe guy from way back. That's an excellent video with overlays... MAN! I wish I had that capability about a decade ago. SO cool...

    -slinger
     
  12. jengo

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    Ya I started on that but it turns out that WireShark is all messed up in Mavericks. I got side tracked trying to figure out why no interfaces were showing up. So never made any progress. This week, I am gonna try it with a different laptop.
     
  13. jengo

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    It would seem that you would add it to whatever system is handling writing files for photos and video. When you write photos, it does record GPS to the EXIF data. So it does have it. They just need to append to a file with the same name (different extension) as the video or photo with the extra data that isn't being written.

    Oh wow I need to show some co-workers those data overlays. The company I work for rented out a race track for some of the teams next month. We are all huge data nerds so they will want to jump all over this!
     
  14. Driffill

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    Not to sidetrack, but that video was made with only an ipad2 (APP: TrackAddict), a gopoint BT1 (Bluetooth OBD2 dongle) and post production with RaceRender2*. It can be done from the iPad only, but then its limited to basic HUD displays . . . The ~$30 for RR2 was worth it, you can create custom gauges etc, i haven't gotten around to making one the same as my RX8 yet tho :(

    Race render2 also allows you to add PIP as well, if you browse my YouTube uploads you should find others from that track day with my gopro on the roof using a VectorMount :)

    . . .i can't wait to get back onto a racetrack! It's actually why I bought the phantom, to record video while I'm not out driving (the club I'm in hire the track, I'm aloud to fly there :) BOO-YAH :) )
     
  15. gunslinger

    gunslinger Moderator
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    Dayammm!!!

    It don't suck being you!!! :D
     
  16. Driffill

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    To go back on track here (no pun intended) . . .

    I totally missed the fact your talking about a phantom vision! I'm not enticed enough to buy one myself, but if I did, I would be looking into how I could use the wifi connection to relay out the GPS data needed for a AAT! Like I said earlier, those systems a quite pricy, but the vision is relaying the data back already . . .

    And with the massive range the guys are getting with using larger antennas etc, mounting the antenna to a AAT would make the flying a lot easier and maybe increase range as the antenna will follow the vision :)

    To do it, someone would need to pull the GPS from the app and feed it out the audio plug on a single channel using the same protocol as the AAT uses for the GPS-Audio conversion (for the AAT to convert back, a point the antenna) . ..

    Oh, and it just so happens that logging the gps info on the iPad would be quite simple once you've pulled it out of the app.

    . . . I'm a little more enticed!
     
  17. jengo

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    Sadly, I am not one of the ones that gets to drive. However, I might get to go to record video from the air :D
     
  18. jengo

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    The wifi range has been a little iffy. I have flown up to 318' without trouble, but then today I flew 200' away from me and the video cut out for 15 seconds. I lost orientation when I tried to flew it back. By the time I got the right direction, video returned.

    If I make any progress on sniffing the data, I will post my findings.
     
  19. Driffill

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    I suggest you check out Uncle_fester's range extender mod (if you haven't already), it would be the first thing I would do after buying a vision!

    . . . I'm curious, has anyone tried to connect a laptop to the range extender? I wonder what data you could capture like that? Makes me wonder if there is an authentication in the phone app?

    Jailbroken iOS devices make stuff like this easier to sus out!
     
  20. gunslinger

    gunslinger Moderator
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    This is pretty hilarious. I'm a pro geek and reading posts from both of you guys make it obvious I'm not alone... :D