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Litchi Panorama mission - VERY slow, high battery usage?

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by Deanster, May 20, 2016.

  1. Deanster

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    Hi all! I've been working on a series of 'Little Planets' panorama shots with my 13 y/o son as part of his 8th grade final project.

    We bought Litchi, and installed it on the iPad Mini 4 we use for flight control. We've tried flying our photo missions, but once we have the P3P in position and have Litchi start shooting the 3-row spherical panorama, things just grind to a halt.

    It's shooting 26 pictures, 8 pics per horizontal row at 45 degrees rotation per shot, plus two shots taken straight down, 180 degrees apart. The software seems to do a fine and speedy job of moving the P3 into position after each shot, but then waits 15-30 seconds or more to actually take the shot.

    At the same time, it sure looks like battery life is falling MUCH faster than usual. We've had to abort two flights where we got down to 30% battery in 10-12 minutes without completing the 26-shot cycle, starting with fresh-off-the charger batteries that reported 98% full on takeoff, in 65 degree F weather, winds well under 3mph.

    My only hypothesis is that Litchi has very high standards for positioning when in spherical panorama mode, and tries aggressively to be in the exact same spot for each photo, which both delays taking the photo and eats battery power as it works towards a particular spot in the sky.

    We've gone to flying the missions by hand, just eyeballing the rotation using the 'radar' display on the screen, and are getting all 26 photos in a couple minutes, with use of less than 20% of the battery's power.

    Any thoughts about what's up with Litchi? Are there settings I should be looking at that would tell it to just take the **** picture and move on?

    I could live with the slow photo-taking, or the high battery consumption, but if we can't take the full 26-photo set on one battery with the drone in sight overhead in perfect weather, it's just not very useful.

    For your amusement, here's one we made from a hand-flown flight yesterday, near Seattle's Elliot Bay Marina. Still working on getting the pano software to stitch water correctly, you'll see a couple discontinuities on the edge of the 'planet'...
     

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  2. Phantomix

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    What app/software do you use for stitching the pictures together? also, i agree with your theory
     
  3. jonebk12

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    That doesn't seem like normal behavior for Litchi. The other week I flew a 5-10 minute waypoint mission and still had enough juice to do a 26 photo spherical panorama mission during the same flight. I'm on Android.
     
  4. MikeON

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    I'm on iOS. P3A firmware 1.6.40. I can easily shoot a 78 shot pano (26 orientations x 3 shot AEB) and still have battery life remaining for some random flying around. When the weather clears up, I'll see if I can do 2 panos on a flight. I do agree it seems to pause longer than necessary between shots and the pause seems to be inconsistent.
     
  5. Quadcopterpilot

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    Send an email to Litchi support, I'm sure they will be happy to help.
     
  6. MikeON

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    Deanster:
    Are you shooting .dng (raw) or .jpg?
    And what memory card are you using?
    I'm wondering if the pause is caused by Litchi waiting for the camera to write the photos to the SD card before proceeding with more photos.
    A few months ago, I was having photos missing from my panoramas (the pano action that is part of waypoint mode, not the pano mode itself). I upgraded to a faster card and the problem went away.
     
  7. MikeON

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    I tried 2 panoramas/flight this evening. Started at 94% battery. Shot two 78 picture panoramas (26 orientations x 3 shot AEB) in DNG mode. Max height was 337 feet and max distance 979 feet. Battery was at 37% at completion of second panorama.
     
  8. clowther

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    I too have had slow photos during pano shot with litchi. I am thinking its a slow card though. Will try a new card to see if I have same problem.


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
  9. Mako79

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    This is normal. It takes a while to complete a pano. Mine chews an average of 25-35% percent for 10x3 rows + 2 bottom. You need to remember that it takes a few photos and then moves back into its spot and corrects itself and then continues taking more photos. If you are running low on battery, switch to P and finish taking the photos yourself. Just do some guestimations of the angles and take an extra couple just to make sure.
     
  10. MikeON

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    I wonder why they chose to do multiple rotations (one for each gimbal pitch angle). It would seem to make more sense to do only one rotation and vary the gimbal pitch to get the multiple shots at each yaw orientation angle. This would mean less repositioning of the aircraft.
     
  11. Mako79

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    Maybe Litchi was just thinking like everyone else does - capture in the same method as reading, that is left to right, top to bottom. He was probably trying to accommodate for other stitching software as the photos are taken in the sequence of rows then column. Capturing in this sequence makes it easier also to put the jigsaw together if you had to stitch it manually.