Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

Sign up for a weekly email of the latest drone news & information

Phantom firmware upgrade; No real issues; what to expect

Discussion in 'Firmware' started by PhantomFan, Nov 26, 2013.

  1. PhantomFan

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2013
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    New York, USA
    Always wary about fixing what isn't broken, I decided (based largely on the absence of complaints) to upgrade the Phantom firmware to the recently release v.4.02 after having updated the Assistant to v.2.20. So...why am I making this post if there were no issues?

    Because there were a couple, although they were minor and surmountable. The Assistant download and install went fine. The installation of the firmware failed on the first try, but succeeded on the second after de-powering and re-powering the Phantom. Not the most confidence-boosting of occurrences. The importation of the default settings also seemed to go nominally on the first try, and the Assistant software interface not changed at all as far as I could tell...so that was good.

    The problem (once again) is with the advanced calibration. Once again that stupid, nagging warning about overly hot components aborts the calibration. Why was this not fixed??? Knowing it was going to take a few minutes, I left the computer during the calibration to get dressed for the cold outside so I could take the firmware updated Phantom for a spin. I came back to the computer to see the advanced calibration failure. Oh, boogers...here we go again. So after a couple of attempts, I manage to tease it to completion. Again, not the most confidence instilling happenstance.

    Anyway, the first flight was uneventful and very cautiously made. If it acted wonky at all my plan was to toss my hat into the props if I had to to bring it to the ground. Nothing like that was required. What IS required (not really a surprise) is compass calibration. You MUST do the dance after a firmware upgrade. - so be advised - you WILL see flashing lights demanding a compass re-calibration upon first power-up.

    I WILL say the Phantom took its sweet time stabilizing in altitude. For the first five minutes I found myself constantly giving "UP" stick commands during flight in GPS mode, although I had all green lights. After about 5 minutes, it totally straightened itself out and maintained its altitude perfectly. No toilet bowl effect. All gain settings were left at default (125%).

    That was all I had time to test, as I need to run off to work. If the weather is good over Thanksgiving (a bit doubtful ATM) I'll put it through its paces in ATTI and Manual modes.

    PF
     
  2. OI Photography

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2013
    Messages:
    5,542
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Clarksville, TN
    Did you apply the default Phantom settings file after doing the upgrade?

    I actually had to do the magnet swirl to get the compass back in alignment after I upgraded to 4.2.
     
  3. PhantomFan

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2013
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    New York, USA
    Yep. See fourth paragraph, above. I think it is more or less obligatory after a firmware upgrade.

    PF
     
  4. tomcole

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2013
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Follow-up question... I upgrade my firmware as well, and downloaded and applied the default phantom settings file per the web site, and re-did calibration, etc.

    The Assistant offers to "save configuration settings". Is the resulting settings file the same as (or maybe more correctly "based on") the downloaded one? That is, next time I need to update settings should I start with the DJI-provided configuration file or the saved configuration file I created after upgrading to 4.0.2?
     
  5. discv

    Joined:
    May 7, 2013
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    26
    Location:
    London, UK
    PF, the motor test is disappointing isn't it. I mean you can only flick the motors to test rotation- not run them up to compare bearings etc
     
  6. OI Photography

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2013
    Messages:
    5,542
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Clarksville, TN
    I would save the config file, but only after you make sure all the setting tweaks you may need are dialed in just right first. The settings file will then have the default settings + whatever changes you made, and I would use that the next time you upgrade the firmware, unless you've made any hardware changes or anything else that require changing any settings. In fact, the best practice might be to save the settings file just before doing an upgrade, and then re-loading it immediately after.
     
  7. PhantomFan

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2013
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    New York, USA
    The motor test is for one purpose only...visual confirmation of the correct directional rotation of your props. Even THAT is supposed to be done sans props. If you want to run up your motors, go ahead. There's no reason in the world why you would need to do that in the software, and a LOT of reasons DJI has to NOT allow you to do so using their Assistant software. In fact, they repeatedly advise to remove all propellers. No doubt they understand the potential for harm - or at least their LAWYERS do.

    PF
     
  8. Dave Pitman

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2013
    Messages:
    375
    Likes Received:
    31
    Location:
    Olympic Peninsula USA
    I just wanted to add that DJI recommends a Tx calibration as well with a new firmware update.
     
  9. PhantomFan

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2013
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    New York, USA
    Meaning you do a stick calibration from within the NAZA Assistant, and not that "stand alone" transmitter calibration routine with the beeps for the transmitter only, right?

    PF
     
  10. Dave Pitman

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2013
    Messages:
    375
    Likes Received:
    31
    Location:
    Olympic Peninsula USA
    Just went to the wiki, and I do not see it mentioning the tx calibration. So, if I did not see a pop up or something, then I must be thinking about the Vision, and not the Phantom. I guess I'll have to retract that comment.
     
  11. Driffill

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2013
    Messages:
    529
    Likes Received:
    3
    The "too hot" and FW fails are a little hit an miss, sometime it goes thru fine, other time it doesn't. In a bad excuse to spend more money, I've tried some of the don't do's etc, just for sh*ts and giggles. The first time I updated the firmware, I to went on to say that the Tx calibration must be done, however since then, I've done many updates without doing the calibration again!

    Now not that I'm say it can always be done, here is a list of the stupid **** I've done without crashing:
    1. Flew with the gopro wifi on, and live view on iPad, in fact, I used the iPad to start it recording
    2. Hovered for 2 batteries no more than 6 feet away from a wifi router, with the Tx in hand, I walked about 40ft away
    2. Updated firmware and performed NO software calibrations before flying
    3. Updated firmware and had not done a compass dance before flying
    4. Used third party software to communicate with the naza. In an effort to disassemble FW, flew for around 3 minutes, and then was back at the computer with it, looking for different data (no dice :( )

    All the above was done in a effort to find an obvious reasons for malfunctions, and was done intentionally at the time with redundant fail safe plans. . . .
    Can anyone else here say they have reeled in a phantom on a fishing rod? :) lol
     
  12. duijver

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    0
    I seem to have a constant yellow light/flicker after doing the FW upgrade on a 1.1.1 from 4.0 to 4.02. The main controller / NM app still shows the Phantom and it looks good, but from what I can see the TX cannot communicate. Did anyone experience this or have any idea's?

    I tried flipping the GPS/ATTI controller 10 times to force a compass read, but it did not change the LEDs. I will try charging the batteries again, but they were fully charged before I started the FW. I tried a TX calibration as well, and it did se em to go, but I never went totally to the end. The only thing that I can consider is opening up the shell and re-linking the TX? http://wiki.dji.com/en/index.php/Phanto ... d_Receiver

    I am fine doing this if required, but will opening up the unit void the warranty?

    Thanks!
     
  13. Hiway

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Messages:
    491
    Likes Received:
    2
    I went through this issue- A fine and helpful member here pointed me to the answer:
    viewtopic.php?f=5&t=3809
     
  14. duijver

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks Hiway!! The response is greatly appreciated! I won't have a chance to try it now until tomorrow/later but that really seems to be it and it is sad that DJI cannot detect serial#'s to set DBUS vs. the default in their software. :(
     
  15. discv

    Joined:
    May 7, 2013
    Messages:
    619
    Likes Received:
    26
    Location:
    London, UK
    You should not need to be a lawyer to comprehend that a Phantom can be potentially harmful. Here you seem to suggest that DJI lawyers have vetoed a very useful feature.

    Other flight controllers I have allow running up of motors individually from the software. To carry out these tests, in controlled conditions, let me monitor bearings [under load], temperatures of motors and ESCs and so on. I have been able to identify defects before a failure occurred. This,I suggest, in fact reduces potential harm.

    It's a given that a degree of risk assessment is carried out prior to spinning up props on a bench ;)
     
  16. PhantomFan

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2013
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    New York, USA
    There's no need to run up your motors in the software, when you can already do it without needing to have the Assistant running. The ability to simply "blip" your motor is something you CAN'T readily do straight from the Tx, and so it is a nice feature. Add to that it is a safety issue in the best of circumstances, and it is no wonder that the intelligent and cautious folks at DJI designed their Assistant software just the way they did.

    Lets face it, DJI can't possibly predict, know, or plan for the myriad of computer types and OS combinations their customers are going to be installing and using to run the NAZA Assistant. No one knows what some random hardware/software combination might portend if the run up of the props were enabled in the Assistant software. No...I think DJI made the best of all possible decisions on that one.

    My $.02

    PF