Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

  1. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    I've seen a few pilots out there say they are flying their P4 with an Inspire controller.

    About 10mos ago I bought a brand new GL658A to get HDMI for my P3P, then a week later DJI came out with an HDMI kit for the P3P, so I put the Inspire RC in on the shelf since I decided to upgraded my P3P controller with the HDMI module. I intended to use the Inspire RC as a second controller when I move up to an Inspire (getting my 333 will trigger an Inspire purchase) but now that I have a P4 with lackluster range (using 4mbps), I'm hoping my Inspire controller might help. I just ordered the Itelite antenna from MaxxUAV. I plan to do whatever it takes to get the P4 to match the range of my P3P, which I've been very happy with using Windsurfer 2+ miles, easy.

    What I'm curious about is the old firmware in the Inspire RC. What should I do? I would assume I should launch the Inspire version of the Go app to upgrade the firmware. Is that what everyone else is doing?

    Then, after upgrading the RC firmware, switch back to the P4 version of Go app to fly my P4 craft, correct?

    Or, are you guys using P4 RC firmware on the Inspire RC? I'm not sure of the compatibility.

    Thanks in advance for the tips.
     
    #1 John Locke, Apr 27, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2016
  2. ringolong

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2016
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    86
    Location:
    TN
    There is just one version of the go app, and it auto detects the craft once linked. The version of the AC will not show, but it will fly perfect. (this is how mine works)

    IMG_0454.jpg
     
  3. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    I know how to link and fly, that's not the question. The question is how do I update the inspire RC firmware?

    I mis-spoke. Yes, there's one version of GO, but when you boot the app you can choose what type of craft you want to fly. I'm thinking for purposes of upgrading the rc firmware I should select inspire without linking to the P4. My RC is over ten months old, the firmware is way outdated so it will need updated. Has anyone figured out what the process is to update the Inspire RC in this scenario?
     
  4. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Now that I have looked into this more, since I have 1.2 firmware in this Inspire RC, it appears I'll have to update the RC with a thumb drive to the point where it updates through the app. I believe 1.3 was the last update that was performed via thumb drive (or was it 1.4?), so it appears I'll have to update to that level first before I jump to higher levels via the Go app. I have some work to do.
     
    #4 John Locke, Apr 28, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2016
  5. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    In case anyone is interested, my old Inspire RC with 1.2 firmware needed updated to 1.3.0 first. After that version then the RC firmware can upgraded through the Go app. All done, success, with the latest 1.6 loaded in the RC!

    Now I'll move on to see if this helps to improve my Phantom 4 signal integrity. I realize this doesn't help the bird-side signal transmission strength for video, but maybe it will help with my total loss of control signal that I seem to get all the time with my P4. My Phantom 3P never did that, it would always lose video signal first, which allowed me to ascend to get my video signal back, which usually works.

    It's very unnerving to wait and wait and wait for the craft to auto-RTH when I lose control signal. I just don't like it, hence I'm trying to eliminate that scenario with my P4 to have a better control signal like my P3P. I'm not sure if this will help since the Inspire RC says it transmits at 20dBm and the P4 show 23dBm. I assume the higher dBm is better, correct?
     
    #5 John Locke, Apr 28, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2016
  6. mem_ny

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    5
    Curious to see what you discover when using your Inpsire RCwith the P4. I too had no issue with the RC firmware updates and now use the App. I modded one of my Inspire RC's with Maxx's mod and had no issue with the P3 Advanced. Wanted to fly the P4 last weekend but had firmware issues with the P4, not the RC. If you search these threads, one user reported video issues and others have reported no issues.

    Curious to see what you find.
     
  7. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    When I updated the RC to 1.6 f/w the RC said NO SIGNAL with the AC turned on. Although the video would work, the motors wouldn't start. I had to update the AC with the latest F/W to match. I think the control part of the latest firmware has new encryption enabled, hence the motors would not start, there was a mismatch with RC firmware and AC firmware. After I updated the AC firmware to the latest F/W it appears the AC works fine with my Inspire RC now, just testing by turning on the motors indoors without props. I'm flying it today after work. I'll let you know the results.
     
  8. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    So I flew my P4 this afternoon after work using an Inspire GL658A controller, latest firmware on both craft and RC, 4mbps transmission quality, channel 31. I only did one flight, it was getting dark, but all went well. Without my windsurfer installed, I went out to 4800' where I first started to lose bars. I had clear LOS in the hills. Then at around 5000' it lost video signal, however I was about 100' above high tension power lines, not sure how much the wires affected the connection. BUT..... I didn't lose control signal ! I simply ascended and my video came back. That's what I was hoping for, so I'm stoked. With my GL300C controller I would have lost control signal at the same time as I lose video signal, and it would have been at around 3000'. I would usually get a message of SIGNAL LOST (or something to that affect) which triggers RTH. In that case I can't ascend to my video back, like I can with my P3P. This flight I got the message "Weak Signal" as a warning, which is what I'm use to seeing with my P3P. Next flight I'll use windsurfer to see what happens. I expect to easily get to 3mi, more reliably than I have before. I'm thinking the Inspire RC may be the hot ticket, anyway I'm hoping so.

    For weeks I've been using my old P3 for important shoots because I know it will perform. I working on this to get confidence in the P4 in the same way. I also ordered the Itelite antenna from Maxx, it's in transit.
     
  9. mem_ny

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    5
    Had a chance to take out the Inpsire RC with the P4 and MAXX's powered setup. Love MAXX's product by the way. Few out to 10,000 feet and started to get a weak signal. Not bad. Was over open water most of the trip, and then over land. Actually very pleased, but then ....

    When I lost signal, set RTH, and video never recovered. Flew back the P4 using RTH and was able to follow the P4 on the map, but no video with weak signal. Once P4 in sight, flew it in manually without issue. Changed battery to try again, but still could not get video, with weak signal, standing right next to the P4. Had a message Air Encoder Error (0x20). Restarted all with same result. In other words, was able to connect, but no video.

    Then linked the original P4 RC to the P4, restarted, the P4, and all good. Not a good thing to happen when out 10,000 feet.

    Tomorrow, will try again with the MAXX'ed out Inspire RC on the Inspire to see if it's 1) my mod (or RC), or a 2) compatibility issue.

    Would appreciate anyone's thoughts.
     
  10. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Do you have the Inspire RC and P4 loaded with the latest firmware? What model Inspire RC do you have? GL658A? Do you have your transmission quality set to 4mbps? That's important.

    Today I took my P4 out again with my Inspire GL658A RC with NO WINDSURFER, stock antennas. I was in the hills where there was no wifi interference, clear line of sight, on Ch 31 and running 4mbps transmission quality. I went 12,200' and never lost a bar, however the report below says I lost datalink for a second at 9950' distance. I never saw a glitch while flying, never lost video or control. So tomorrow I'm going to go farther to see what the limit is again. I'm blown away that I got 12000' without my windsurfer. I'm pretty happy about that, it feels more like my P3P w/GL300A RC from a distance and signal integrity point of view.
    upload_2016-4-30_21-49-58.png
    upload_2016-4-30_21-55-2.png
     
  11. Kman

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2014
    Messages:
    925
    Likes Received:
    426
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    I've gotten 19,000 with no windsurfer and stock P4 controller.

    Is the inspire controller really better? Same conditions, what distance are you getting with the stock P4 controller with no windsurfer?
     
  12. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    The Inspire controller seems better, but I have a lot more testing to do. You remember when we flew LA Harbor? With my stock P4 RC I got two signal loss scenarios there at ~3000' and 4000', and that was with Windsurfer on Ch31 at 4mbps (my normal settings). And when we flew Laguna, if you remember I lost signal over the beach at 4000' and that one triggered RTH, very unnerving. That was also with Windsurfer. I hate it when that happens out of the blue with no warning. I've never had that happen with my P3P using Windsurfer. I always lose video first as a warning, and I have never lost control signal on my P3P. The Inspire controller seems more reliable flying around Anaheim Hills this weekend. And yesterday when I lost signal in Rowland Heights flying around in the hills it was only video, I still had control of the bird, allowing me to ascend to re-establish my video connection.

    I've gone 15,000' with the stock controller using Windsurfer in Anaheim Hills. I felt good about that but I can't explain the subsequent LA Harbor and Laguna signal losses. The integrity of the P4 RC connection isn't as solid as the stock P3P RC for some reason, I can't explain it when your P4 RC seems to be working OK, I assume.

    I won't know the answer to the stock controller question for a couple weeks. Currently my P4 GL300C controller has the old firmware on it and my Phantom has the new firmware, so they are incompatible right now. I'm flying the P4 with the Inspire controller in the meantime.

    Before I upgrade the stock GL300C RC firmware I want to measure the RF output on it and compare it to the Inspire GL658A. I ordered the Immersion RF meter to measure RF power output. I'll be measuring all of my RC's RF output and the birds output to compare them all at the same distance from the meter. I'm hoping I can learn something, possibly confirm what the FCC filings tell us.

    Someone mentioned they thought the new firmware improved the connection distance, which may be true. So before I upgrade I'll take several meter readings, then upgrade it and take more reading to see if this latest firmware changed the power any. I really doubt the power changed, since it would be in violation of the FCC filings, increasing it after the fact.
     
  13. asaerong

    Joined:
    May 27, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Indonesia
    Hi John thanks for sharing this, I am just about to run and buy myself an I1 tx, could you help a bit on the steps of i1 tx upgrade and p4 ac upgrade? sorry i must have missed it since english is not my natural language :). so:

    1. upgrade the I1 tx (with usb if its too old) or just use Go app (select inspire) then upgrade through app
    2. then upgrade the P4 ac (or make sure I have the latest f/w) through Go app (select P4)
    3. then link both (using hole in p4 and Go app for i1 remote), for this linking, in Go app, I should select inspire1 or P4 in the menu beginning of the app?
    4. after all that do you still see "unknown" aircraft version like mentioned by ringolong? and which selection in Go app that you use to fly it - the inspire 1 or P4?
    5. and since you're talking about Ch31, i assume channel hack is needed, correct?
    6. Last but not least, i guess i should go in Go app (select Inspire1) from time to time to check if there is any new TX firmware correct?

    thanks in advance, albert
     
  14. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Good questions, here ya go:
    1. upgrade the I1 tx (with usb if its too old) or just use Go app (select inspire) then upgrade through app
    You need to upgrade the i1 tx with the latest Inspire RC firmware. If the i1 tx is old and doesn't have at least 1.3.0 firmware in the tx, then upgrade first to 1.3.0 using the thumbdrive method. After you get 1.3.0 loaded OK you can upgrade the i1 tx to the latest firmware through the Go app.
    2. then upgrade the P4 ac (or make sure I have the latest f/w) through Go app (select P4)
    Yes, the P4 craft must have the latest P4 firmware. You can confirm that, or do that using your P4 tx.
    3. then link both (using hole in p4 and Go app for i1 remote), for this linking, in Go app, I should select inspire1 or P4 in the menu beginning of the app?
    Yes, when both tx and craft have the latest firmware, link the craft to the tx using the little hole near the sd card that has the red led when you start the link process in the Go app.
    4. after all that do you still see "unknown" aircraft version like mentioned by ringolong? and which selection in Go app that you use to fly it - the inspire 1 or P4?
    Yes, the downside to the i1 tx is you will always see "Unknown" for aircraft in the "About" section. I don't know why.

    There is no need to select the craft in the Go App. When you plug the USB cable from the tx to the tablet it will sense an Inspire RC, so the Inspire app will show. But when you turn on the linked craft it will sense the P4 and the app will change to the P4 app automatically.

    5. and since you're talking about Ch31, i assume channel hack is needed, correct?
    The hack isn't required, only recommended to find a clear channel easier. So far the Go app and tx firmware still allow for the hack to work, but I hear that's going to come to an end sometime soon.
    6. Last but not least, i guess i should go in Go app (select Inspire1) from time to time to check if there is any new TX firmware correct?
    I haven't seen new notifications yet for new F/W since I have just converted, but since the app automatically senses an Inspire RC connected, the GO app always boots in the Inspire mode BEFORE you turn on the P4 craft. So I assume any firmware notifications will appear on the homescreen as normal if new F/W for the RC is released.
     
    #14 John Locke, Jun 6, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2016
  15. asaerong

    Joined:
    May 27, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Indonesia
    Awesome! thanks for the answers John!. cheers,
     
  16. Todd Schwartz

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    How do I bind the I1 remote to P4 craft? Thx
     
  17. John Locke

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2015
    Messages:
    2,953
    Likes Received:
    1,107
    Location:
    Yorba Linda, CA
    To start with, both the controller and the craft need to have compatible generation firmware. So if you have an old Inspire controller from 2015 that's never been updated, you'll need to update the RC firmware, and the same with the P4. My Inspire RC was from March 2015, GL658A, so I had to update my FW in the RC to be compatible with current gen craft FW and Go app.. With that accomplished I updated the P4 with new firmware using the stock GL300C controller. Both updates went fine, but were independent from each other on the same day. My versions are noted in my signature. After I had matching generation FW in the GL658A and my P4 craft, I updated my Go app. Then I simply linked both together using the link function in the Go app, while pushing the little link button hole with a paperclip, located on the craft, just right of the SD slot.