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  1. Dirty Bird

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    Quick report on Phantom 4 range tests -

    Ft. Armistead - 41°, 12-16 mph winds, occasional sleet. Three flights directly into stout Easterly wind @ 250' altitude.

    10,500' - 13,000'- Great signal & video, video burped here & there but never lost feed, telemetry, or control. Only turned around because of flight computer battery warning. Cancelled battery alert on flights 2 & 3. Got back with lots of battery left..could have gone further just not sure how far to push things. Still 5000'+ short of my P3 but I think the P4 might be able to match it with better weather conditions or abetter feel for the battery on my part. Still on site. More later...
     
    #1 Dirty Bird, Mar 20, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2016
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  2. bighi

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    Just finished my own tests. Nothing scientific here but just basics. Yeah, the range of my phantom 3 advanced is, on average, 25-35 percent more than my phantom 3. And this is a November 2015 phantom 3 advanced. This ain't right. Not at the money we paid. Why does DJI keep screwing us in spite of our loyalty?
     
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  3. DrJoe

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    Heck I remember when we were happy with 3000 feet of range! And that was only a year and a half ago… I imagine the P4 using more power for its additional systems, so they cut back on the range 25%. You will not need more than 10,000 range for anything currently legal in the United States, but I do agree that Dji should've given its customers a heads up.

    Btw, I did and do plenty of non LOS flights, just sayin it isn't really a. Factor when you have a 2 mile range.
     
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  4. flyNfrank

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    Don't forget the P4 weighs 100 grams more which is a lot when flying at a distance.

    But didn't dji claim the range was to be similar to the P3?
     
  5. bighi

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    The phantom 4 light bridge, after my back to back phantom 3 advanced and phantom 4 tests, feels to be somewhere between a phantom 3 standard and pro advanced in range. Extremely unacceptable at the price of the phantom 4. Time for a firmware update. Like yesterday if DJI does not want this giant can of worms to get out of hand.
     
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  6. Davphys

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    Time for you guys to write Frank Wang, the CEO: Frank.wang@dji.com.

    If enough people complain he may respond.
    I wonder if this could actually be fixed with a firmware update or if it's a hardware limitation?



     
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  7. Bocephus-73

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    I think it's becoming obvious at this point that DJI caved in to pressure from the FAA, CAA and other aviation authorities and reduced the output on the P4 bird side transmitting power. While there is technically no law in the U.S. about LOS flying, it's clear that everything is moving in that direction when it comes to manual flying of UAVs (autonomous is a different story) and DJI wanted to get ahead of the curve so as not to tick off Big Brothers around the world. :(

    I think BLOS flying will be allowed for drones in the future --- but will most likely require a certification showing you know how to fly proficiently using telemetry, FPV, etc. It will be another money-making scheme for the FAA, but getting certification will help cut down on the bozos who fly 2 miles away into some restricted airspace.
     
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  8. sar104

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    So I'm confused - now you have concluded that the P4 probably does have similar range to the P3?
     
  9. Dirty Bird

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    First time I've range tested so I haven't commented on range before. Mine seems to be doing fairly well on range. The battery life is another story... :(

     
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  10. Bocephus-73

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    13,000 ft. is encouraging for the P4 but that's still only about 60% of what a stock P3 Pro can do.

    Not sure why nobody in here is posting YouTube video of these long-range flights so we can see the "hiccups" in the FPV for ourselves.
     
  11. Dirty Bird

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    Just finished flying off 4 batteries on the P3 Advanced. Flying from inside the truck is pretty damned nice. it's warm & I have coffee! :cool:
     
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  12. Dirty Bird

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    They won't show up in the bird-side video. Remember Lightbridge isn't like WI-Fi. LB doesn't try to validate each & every bit of video like WI-Fi. When I say hiccup I mean the video feed gets a momentary bit of pixelation. Just for a brief moment..

     
    #12 Dirty Bird, Mar 20, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2016
  13. Dirty Bird

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    Only turned around on these flights because there is a good breeze & I'm unsure how far to push a P4 battery. I never lost video or control. Could of kept going but if I miscalculate she's going down in the Bay! :eek:

     
  14. Bocephus-73

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    Not sure what you're talking about --- I get pixelation all the time on my P3P FPV feed --- just use a screen recorder so you can upload the tablet-side video to YouTube so we can see what these hiccups looks like at 10K+ ft.
     
  15. Szon3

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    This may not be the right place to post but, seeing how I own neither P4 or P3 I probably will get a used P2V+ around 320.00 with 3 bat. Just to scratch the itch. The more I read about he p4 I'm getting a little disenchanted. There is so many mixed reviews on P4... Distance ,and especially battery life. do you still fly the Dirty Bird?
     
  16. Bocephus-73

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    13,000 ft. is nice but still disappointing if that is the max. range for a P4. I was able to get 20,000 ft. on my stock P3 Pro on it's third flight out of the box. Gut feeling and numerous reports tells me the P4 can't replicate that. :(
     
  17. Bocephus-73

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    That is a good strategy if you're a noob to Phantoms and want to learn the basics of flying and BLOS flying with FPV.

    Do a lot of research on the P3 Pro and P4 and make an educated decision on what to buy. Ask yourself if Tap-to-Fly and Obstacle Avoidance is really worth more than increased range that the P3P offers. Remember, there are lots of battery mods out there for the P3 that can get you 26 min. flight times. :D
     
  18. Davphys

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    Again- some people are able to get more or less depending on their location. The correct question for DB is if the range is equivalent to the P3 in the same location and conditions.
    Dirty Bird: do you feel the range is more or less equivalent in capability to your P3P?
     
    #18 Davphys, Mar 20, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2016
  19. With The Birds

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    When i see that one of our long range flight aficionados is back to report i am reading with great interest. This is dissapointing performance. I was hoping for a better camera hanging under the P4, it seems there may be some slight improvement in the optics but no improvement in video data rate or other important areas. To learn distance is crippled and battery life nowhere near advertised is a total bummer.

    Sport mode may prove usefull for transition between POI but i dont want it at the expense of max V in P mode taking a backward step.

    We might be seeing an act of desperation here with DJI trying to rush out obstacle avoidance and object tracking fearing a market share loss to yuneec and others.

    As to obstacle avoidance, i can reliably see what i might fly into, i dont need my speed crippled to allow an automated system to do something im more capable of.
     
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  20. Bocephus-73

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    I get that same feeling as well. It's very similar to a few years ago how every TV manufacturer had to make 3D versions of their popular models just to keep pace with competitors when they all eventually found out that nobody really wanted 3D. Lots of wasted money on development costs for a feature very few customers needed.

    The bottom line is that Obstacle Avoidance and Active Tracking will be used by a very small percentage of experienced Phantom pilots. DJI painted itself into a corner with this "must have all the cool stuff" mentality and it's signaling the downward slide of the company's vision. If I don't see a much improved Lightbridge with 1080p FPV and zoom on the "P4 Pro" or P5 then I will likely never buy another DJI product and seek out alternatives with their competitors.