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Questions about NON-DJI apps

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by Kirby Johnson, Sep 5, 2016.

  1. Kirby Johnson

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    I have a P3A and exclusively use the DJI Go app and have not had any problems. I have tried out most of the features and they work as advertised. Soon after I bought my bird I also bought Litchi, but subsequent reading here made me ambivalent about even using it.

    This forum is awash in horror stories of Phantoms flying away or crashing into salt water. I haven't seen this specifically addressed, but reading a lot, it seems the Litchi app is a common denominator. Now, I am not trying to lure anyone into condemning a particular software, I have already bought it, and if in fact there is a higher chance of a loss with Litchi, I would rather jettison a What? 20 or 30 dollar app than sacrifice my drone finding out an unmentioned truth.

    So are my suspicions correct or not. Thanks
     
  2. Meta4

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    I use Litchi a little and have never had any problems with it.
    It's important to be completely familiar with the Phantom but I've never seen or heard of anything that would make me suspect that Litchi causes problems.
    There are things that Litchi does extremely well and I find the waypoint feature to be very, very useful.
     
  3. jakeglik

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    i bought both litchi and DJI ultimate flight, i use quite often litchi because of the VR feature
    only bug i had was in one flight with litchi (didnt use at that flight the VR) that camera stopped responding to pitch inputs, didnt go up or down
    i closed litchi and went back in and it was fixed, other than that didnt have issues with litchiG
    BUT ... on "dangerous" flights above water i prefer DJI go, so in case something happens i want the logs to show i flew with GO, so i have warranty
     
  4. fastfed

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    without question you will read more incidences happening with people using the DJI go app, rather then Litchi, simply because most people use the DJI GO app... Fly aways, crashes, complete shut downs and the list goes on.

    At the end of the day, there are thousands more people using these apps with zero issues, you just only read about the bad ones because the happy people don't constantly post each and every flight, but lose one drone and we will hear about it.
     
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  5. Flipsonic

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    Been using Litchi about 95% of the time since June and no experience of any kind of problems. All waypoint missions have been successful except for Interpolate not working as expected. But that's for another thread. Most problems I have found in this forum are from pilot error or some kind of AC failure, not Litchi. So far Litchi has been good to me.


    Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots
     
  6. matti

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    I am not aware of any crash or flyaway described in these forums that was caused by Litchi malfunction. All have been due to pilot error (making the mission fly too low or too near obstacles or not considering ground elevation). Only in one case the cause for the missed AC was unclear (maybe hit by a bird, failed battery or some mechanical failure, lost GPS?). I'm not saying that Litchi is foolproof, though.
     
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  7. rene van der meer

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    Like mentioned there is no indication that Litchi or other 3rd party app cause more crashes.
    If it is caused by DJI they will even issue warranty.

    On the other hand, it is pity that DJI develops one of the best drones of the world and does not develop the software to exploit all functionality. Litchi is a very good and save extension allowing you to get more of the drone and your hobby.
    Since you already bought it, I would recommend you stop looking for excuses to to use it and give it a try.

    Once you have gotten used to Litchi, you will regret that you have hesitated so long ;)

    Enjoy flying!
     
  8. Kirby Johnson

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    Thanks everyone. Maybe I will give it a shot. Sounds pretty safe from what I am reading this morning. The one feature I am interested in is the visual follow. Because I live in coastal Florida, I don't have the luxury some of you have with wide open spaces, so I am a little more cautious. I see videos from the Midwest, and other rural areas of people with open pastures the size of the county I live in. NOT HERE. You are either over urban areas or saltwater. Caution is the word. Thus far (6 months) I have had excellent results. IE: do not upgrade software/firmware just because it is there. Understand something about maps / charts and aeronautics, and if that little faint voice says "That would be dumb", that little voice is probably right.
    Thanks again everyone, you have answered my question. NOW, to find something I own which Litchi will actually run on. My discussions with the developer on THAT subject have been lackluster.
     
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  9. rene van der meer

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    You will love shooting automatic 360 panorama's.

    I have a Samsung s6 and a Nvidia Shield. The latter is ideal and cheap, but more difficult to get.

    Let us know about your experiences :sunglasses:
     
  10. FantomFlier

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    I spent some time in Sarasota recently, It is just about 5km across the InterCoastal. Perfect for some long range runs.
     
  11. matti

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    I guess Florida is quite flat but I think it is a good idea to nevertheless inspect the mission area in Litchi Mission Hub on a PC because it shows the ground elevations at each waypoint.

    Doing the same in Google Earth is even better because you can just move the cursor on the whole planned mission path and see the ground elevation at the bottom right. Or create a path, set it Relative to ground, and see its elevation profile.

    Screen Shot 2016-09-05 at 18.06.10.png

    I heard that some new version of Litchi might make setting a constant AC altitude from the ground easier. I.e. you don't have to manually calculate "AC altitude + ground elevation" in each waypoint (currently a detour to Google Earth is needed if you want the calculation is done for you). Is this feature currently in beta?


     
    #11 matti, Sep 5, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2016
  12. DrChris

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    I'm back to the Phantom after a hiatus when I needed to spend time on some other hobbies. Upon my return, I found that Litchi has become much more mainstream and I stepped into it. Litchi has opened completely new possibilities to my Phantom use! I'm loving the waypoint mode. Being able to plan out a run while you're waiting for the batteries to charge inside is pretty cool!

    I'd suggest watching some tutorials online about the Waypoint mode. There are many features that allow you to design the flight just like you want but you need to learn about them and this is one of those things that a good tutorial is really useful.

    I had a problem yesterday that was not Litchi related at all and in fact, knowing how Litchi would handle the situation from my reading was really helpful. About half way through a mission, my iPad became hot and shut down. As expected, the Phantom finished the mission and I was able to flip the mode back to P and fly it down for a safe landing. Note: in Litchi if there is a disconnect from the tablet / app, it will finish the mission but the gimbal will not track based on the mission settings. The app has to be connected for the gimbal automation to work. (The overheat was my fault - I had left a cover on the back and it was a really hot day.)

    I'm excited to explore some of the other modes in Litchi like the auto panorama that is mentioned above. Just make sure that you read and check out some tutorials first!

    Chris
     
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  13. FantomFlier

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    I have not found this to be the case. When I lose connection the quad and camera continue to execute the mission exactly as planned. (What would be the point of it completing the mission otherwise?)
     
  14. Flipsonic

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    I have exchanged e-mails with Litchi support about loosing signal while on a WP mission. Here's what they said - "Gimbal moves are managed by the app, if you loose contact with the aircraft the gimbal keeps the last known current position."
     
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  15. Dirty Bird

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    I have over 200 complex, long-range (38,000'+), autonomous Litchi flights on multiple Phantoms. Litchi has performed flawlessly. The aircraft does what you program it to do. While there is always the chance of a hardware failure, I suspect most instances of losing an aircraft with Litchi are due to pilot error misprogramming a mission.







     
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  16. Pharm

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    I will second or third or fourth the fact that, with one exception I can think of, every Litchi "failure" I've seen was due to pilot error (inputting altitude errors, not understanding how Litchi works or what its limitations are). The one exception mentioned above was a mechanical failure.
     
  17. FantomFlier

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    Perhaps I am misunderstanding. The gimbal can only move the camera up and down. The quad still yaws as required to maintain POI, interpolation etc.
     
  18. DrChris

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    That's correct. The app controls the gimbal position so if you lose connection, the Phantom will leave the gimbal as it was when connection was lost. Everything else is controlled in the Phantom so it will continue the mission as it was programmed.

    I agree with the others - Litchi is solid but I could see problems if you haven't scouted your flying area carefully. When you set up missions, you need to be very aware of the appropriate altitudes and not program your Phantom to run into something! I have a few planned scouting flights soon where I'll just go out and carefully measure the relative altitudes of a few key structures in my common flying areas. I really don't want to run into a bridge or something awful like that!

    Another precaution is to set flying speeds rather low and keep the Phantom in LOS so that you can react if your programming wasn't perfect and it's going to hit something. If you flip the switch from F to P (on a 3), it will start hovering and respond to your stick commands just fine.

    Chris
     
  19. FantomFlier

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    This is OK while the pilot is learning and getting used to trusting Litchi, but keeping it LOS defeats the object of autonomous missions when one loses signal. I would not be able to do half my filming otherwise!
     
    #19 FantomFlier, Sep 7, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2016
  20. mcphipps

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    I also use Litchi exclusively. I don't fly as much as some of the other people on these forums, but I have never had one instance where the Litchi software has failed.