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Near WiFi Flying

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by jjmansell, Sep 2, 2013.

  1. jjmansell

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    Okay, new here and a couple weeks away from purchasing my first Phantom.

    I'm a research guy that will do his due diligence before making a $700 purchase to see what to look for.

    I'll also take some sites with a grain of salt and move on.

    My question is, I'm planning on learning to fly my phantom in my backyard at low levels before going to the wild blue yonder but I live in a pretty dense neighborhood with a lot of wifi signals floating around. When I check with my computer, I see a dozen wifi signals from my backyard. If I fly my phantom in my backyard, will all the signal interfere with it?
    I've read that the GoPro Black can interfere if you use the wifi.

    Any advise?

    Jeff
     
  2. rilot

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    I don't think there has ever been anything conclusive one way or another.
     
  3. marcus_canada

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    Of all the millions of flights the Phantom has undertaken across the globe, you have to ask yourself how many of them, as a percentage, have taken place with WiFi in range. And not only the Phantom.... What about all the other flavours of quad/hex/octo. No, WiFi is a minor contributor to these problems in the big scheme of things.

    If I have drawn anything from the flyaways it's that the common denominator, if anything, is the stock radio.

    It's a repetitive comment from me, but you know, sometimes "stuff" just happens, it's pretty much as simple as that, and people have to remain philosophical about that. Just because a small percentage of guys have unfortunately suffered failures/flyaways and subsequently made verbose posts about how awful Phantoms are and they want their money back -rant - rant - rant, it does not make the product inherently inferior.

    I have a few quads now and honestly, if my Phantom decided to go see the world on it's own, then yes, I would be upset, but I'll definitely go buy another, after a respectable period of mourning of course.

    Phantom haters like to go on about it being a cheap product poorly put together and it being a toy, but which flight controller has emerged as the best [at this time]? - the Nazza. Nothing makes me laugh harder than a hater going on about how crap the systems on the Phantom are and him using a Nazza himself on his quad. Alishanmao, the big 'Multirotor master' on Youtube, is particularly vocal on how the Phantom is nothing but a toy but he is now offering the Nazza as his high end controller option with his products LOL
     
  4. rilot

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    I've only heard or a couple of flyaways with aftermarket radios. But then, how many people - as a percentage - are replacing the radios? 5%? 2%? it could be even less than that.

    Either way, there are so many factors involved.

    I will say this, I flew my Phantom in my mate's garden at the weekend not 20 feet from an access point and a bunch of repeaters.
     
  5. bradders

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    I'm comfortable flying in my back garden with 8+ wifi routers within 50m range, but I'd see that very different from enabling wifi on your GoPro and having it transmit its 2.4Ghz signal in very close proximity to the Phantom receiver..
     
  6. DeweyAXD

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    Its an almost impossible question to answer. Think what "Wifi" is... a router, most likely labelled 2.4ghz... then you have the channel it is set to (dictating what frequency band of 2.4ghz it is on). Even on an identical frequency you could fly the Phantom with no drama. The issue is when a signal gets transmitted across the frequency that the flight controller (The Naza) interprets as a transmitter input signal and if that is deemed as a stronger signal than that of the TX itself it will follow its command.

    DJI are selling 20,000 units per month currently (that figure comes from a UK tier one supplier I've been talking recently who just visited their Shenzuan HQ)... sales figure have been rising 20% per month since the turn of the year. That means there is likely 100k supplied units this year only so a good 50,000+ Phantoms actually sold since January that are 'out there' (probably more).
    If just 0.5% suffered a fly away it would be 250 people... most of who will be on forums (rightfully) unhappy. If only half of these people actually post that is still a LOT of posts compared to what we actually see. Sadly its like any air crash... the probability is low but you will always hear about it and you feel really bad for anyone involved.

    Conclusion.... you might be an unlucky one but with sensible upgrades like a full range TX and/or a tracker you can reduce the small chance even further. Buy it and have a blast I say! :D
     
  7. mikrob

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    From everything I have read about, I'd guess that flying in Atti mode with a stock radio is safer than flying in GPS mode with an upgraded controller. But flying in Atti (or manual for experienced flyers) with an upgraded controller is better than Atti with stock radio.
     
  8. ArshadR

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    I'm curious about this -- what's the reason? I've heard people mention "nobody has lost a phantom with an aftermarket controller", but I suspect this may simply be due to the low percentage of owners who have upgraded. Given enough time + numbers, will we see the same thing?

    Specifically, what makes an aftermarket controller less susceptible? Longer range? Different operating frequency? Something else?
     
  9. DeweyAXD

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    Its a fair point... when you look at the percentages you could well be correct. The first thing that makes say a T8J better is that the reciever has 2 antenna at 90 degrees to each other giving a MUCH improved wave form compared to the stock with one. Next consider development costs... T8J retails at £220 and is developed specifically for its task of good clean signal at long range. Almost certainly tested for interference issues.
    The entire Phantom kit retails at £500... that includes it AND the TX. DJI have always specialised in Flight control systems. Safe to say bottom dollar was spent on some components to keep the price at a consumer realistic rate. I am confident any radio device can be interfered with so nothing is 100% safe.
     
  10. jjmansell

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    Awesome responses! Thanks everyone. I feel a lot better about it now and think I'll be just fine. Haven't even bought it yet and already planning on upgrades...lol

    Thanks again! :)
     
  11. mikrob

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    I have seen a video where an upgraded radio was used & a flyaway occurred, so I know that can't prevent it 100 % of flyaways (though they are better than stock). I have never seen a video which showed a flyaway on any radio in attitude mode. I am not saying it can't happen. I would like to have a link that shows a flyaway in atti mode to evolve my thoughts on this subject.
     
  12. martcerv

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    Flying around areas with lots of wifi will simply reduce range of your radio on the same frequency, I have been flying lots of long range fpv (long range for stock radio) at up to about 900m away in open areas and also around houses.

    Flying fpv lets you see every radio glitch and I have been getting quite a few from the stock radio so futaba coming soon. The most interesting thing is there are a few houses in my neighborhood that are like radio black holes, they arent that far away one about 200m and the other a little further but if I fly too close to these houses radio gets glitchy and if I continue getting closer it will go into failsafe. I can go past the houses by about 50m with no issue and my video link is still pretty good even when losing the radio.

    Having had this happen quite a bit its interesting as sometimes I will just lose pitch control and other times the yaw and throttle. I have never had this cause a crash and generaly now when I see it start to glitch I go up quickly if I can or failsafe will kick in. I then regain control as quick as possible and continue on the flight.

    Even with a gopro in wifi it wont lock you out and jam the signal most likely but having another devices screaming out at the same frequently band will greatly reduce your range as a weaker radio signal will be drowned out by the loud gopro that never gets weaker.

    Quite a few radio glitches are also caused by flying with too many objects in los to the phantom and if flying directly behind me when my body is between the radio and phantom. It will be interesting to see how the futaba goes and I am looking at the 8fgs rather then the 8j mostly because I dont think I can mount a screen to the 8j easily with no steel support bar. The 8FG will be a better choice as I move to other multicopters, with more channels and features.