What's so complicated, or how I broke a new quadrocopter

Dunning-Kruger effect - a distortion that is erroneous overestimation of their own capabilities untrained individual in the performance of certain tasks. Why am I? Just a few minutes to play with quadrocopter DJI Phantom 2 Vision + , looks like I became a walking embodiment of such an effect.

"Well, it's so easy!" - I started in free flight is quite expensive, and received from the DJI parole piece of metal. "So cool!" - I squeezed the left stick, and the copter rocket soared to the skies with ease typing a height of thirty meters. LEDs happily winked as I slowly unrolled drone and explore the surrounding area. After the next turn even saw himself a bird's-eye right on the screen of a smartphone in a format 1080p.

Of course, I wanted to quickly save this video and somewhere to put it - you know, something like "controlled drone easy, even for a beginner!».

Copter just rocked back and forth and trying to stabilize when I sent him to land. Suddenly a gust of wind carried away the machine directly to the trees in the yard, here's what I froze. Lightning struck the entire understanding of their own stupidity - run drone for the first time and immediately in a strong wind, but still close to the trees! Still, I tried to save a piece of iron, frantically turning down the right stick back. Stop, we must, on the contrary forward, because copter was just beginning when he was deployed to endure! And, hell, now something where ... ?!

For just a second, stretched for me for years, I saw quadrocopter buzzing shred the leaves on the branches, and then freeze the propellers and the gadget cost more than 50 thousand rubles kite flying to the ground and shatters on the pavement. The battery in the same direction, the camera - to another ... So we froze - I'm with remote control in hand, and the copter with the battery a couple of meters.

For some time before the incident h4> before we know what happened next, not to mention the fact that even the chief editor should first read the instructions, take some time to quadrocopter.

DJI Phantom 2 Vision + - is an updated version of the original model of Vision. The same works with GPS 4-rotor quadrocopter, but it should be called due to the possibility of semi-automatic drone piloting. Although other drones family Phantom 2 can carry fully automatic flight on a pre-programmed route (According to the manufacturer, our copter soon also receives a similar firmware update).

a few features:

Type 4-rotor quadrocopter Weight 1180g The length of the diagonal 350mm Engines 4x 920KVt BLDC Max. horizontal velocity 15m / s Max. vertical velocity rise 6m / s, reducing 2m / s Claimed flight 25min tr > Frequency Control 5.728GGts-5.8GGts Live video frequencies 2412-2462MGts td > Battery capacity 5200mAch Camera 14MP 140 ° FOV (f / 2.8) for stabilizing the suspension Price 59 990r

Of course, the main feature in Vision + built-in camera, mounted on a three-axis stabilizing suspension. During the flight stabilizer allows you to hold the camera still when vibrations of the copter. Also, the "third eye" can be rotated and tilted from the ground when using the DJI Vision (available for iOS and Android).

As with the predecessors 2 Phantom and the Phantom 2 Vision, our drone uses GPS to determine the position, height and acceleration. Each time you turn copter performs a self-test and bind to the satellites. As soon as he caught enough of them, will be available in a semi-flight GPS-mode. Despite the availability of other options, it is a basic GPS-mode will be of interest primarily because it allows just give the command "right", and the drone will decide how and in what direction we must move. By the way, left without control copter will soar in the virtual "cube" from 2m to compensate for wind and other weather features. For a couple of hours of flight, we noticed a couple of times that the drone got a bit of his "safety cube" that appear to have been caused by the problems of calibration built-in compass.

To control the gadget is used quite familiar with two control sticks. With a fresh set of batteries and without obvious obstacles signal, its strength is sufficient to control the copter in a radius of 300m (at least we get). Videos in this broadcast on a separate channel through a special button on the remote transceiver. This transceiver is responsible for the creation of a separate Wi-Fi network for a smartphone, then the video can be viewed through the app DJI. Maybe it looks crooked, but in practice it works fine - you can even control the drone with the camera if you have lost it out of sight. In addition to video, data are available about the distance, speed and altitude of the gadget. The camera can be tilted button in the app or use the accelerometer smartphone; but for its reversal would have to turn all the copter.

Speaking of the application. In the version for iOS clearly been ignored standards of design platform and instead used a clumsy interface of its own design DJI. Not that he was very disturbed to control the unit, but the work of an engineer without understanding how to really should look like interface.

However, the application is quite efficient and allows you to take pictures, shoot video and edit basic image parameters, such as exposure and white balance. For storing video in copter provided SD card 4GB, but no one bothers to put more capacious. The camera is in the resolution 1080p (photo and video); photos on the quality comparable with the average smartphone, but the video is slightly worse. Of course, the movie will not like GoPro, but flying around the neighborhood and look around - more than enough.

But the beauty of the new copter in comparison with the previous Vision is not so much in the camera itself, but in the three-axis automatic stabilizers. And that is where the difference is obvious: the camera is fixed throughout the flight, and the video is obtained at the output well, just smooth-smooth. In principle, you can try to improve the picture if you connect the chassis by Phantom 2 GoPro camera and a separate stabilizer. Video will be better, but you will not get the same level of integration with software copter: for example, Vision + passes "over the air" live video and telemetry data, and at samosbornoy designs all have to realize otherwise.

New Vision + can be considered as an alternative to full samosbornym quadrocopters. I once attended a meeting of fans of drones and the majority of participants at the hands were collected manually copter varying degrees of complexity. Several people showed quite complex units on Arduino, with the transmission of video and other pieces, but none of this option does not offer you the ideology of "unpacked-cum-work" like Vision +. Naturally, for simplicity and willingness to work have to pay something: copter self-assembly can cost up to 10t.r, while the brainchild DJI worth 59 990r. But it and the convenience to him had to pay.

Flight without consequences h4> So what ended the incident in breaking copter? Good news - Phantom Vision + 2 strength could be called a flying tank. Well, at least most of it. Accident completely destroyed the camera and stabilizer, but I just took the same evening copter gently rose into the air again. Much heavier I was given a letter from Mike Perry DJI, where I was told that broke an expensive piece of metal. Fortunately, the team suffered DJI news calmly and I just sent a new copter.

Of course, with the new instance, I was much more careful. In the end, it turned out that really control the drone is not difficult - just need some practice and a little more open space.

Take a look at management. The left stick on the remote control is responsible for a climb and yaw: Expedited \ slowing down tilt it forward or backward, turn rejecting the stick left or right. Right controls to move forward and backward and tilt left and right. The symmetry of the copter in the early hours made me think a lot of what I want to do and how, it's not always clear where he really looks. Helped slow the use of a time only one of the axes on the stick, and later added confidence and began to receive more than a complex maneuvers such as turning on the move.

But the first 10 sessions still went on the nerves. Every time a drone unfolded, had 5 seconds to think about what movements on the remote must commit to steer it in the right direction. But I really enjoyed exploring the surrounding area on the move, the more that the alleged horizontal speed can reach 15m / s. I certainly did not measure the acceleration, but I can say that it flies much faster than I run. Again, the first time I tried not to let go of a piece of metal on a couple of meters - the fear of damage to the second copy is also very careful to make anyone.

After a while I got used to the management and began to let copter in a free flight. And although caution still will not go away, but it was impossible to keep from flying at maximum speed in the open field, the passage at low level flight over the water, or hang a couple of hundred meters above the ground with a view breathtaking video! Copter very agile and nimble, easy to control reacts instantly - probably experienced pilot could show him some cool tricks.

By the way, built-in GPS - a true friend beginner. If suddenly zapanikuete - just release sticks and automatic stop drone itself, align it and leave the still float in the air. If you do not try to drive the copter into the building, to the power lines or tree, the GPS-mode, it is not so easy to kill.

ATTI, blocking rate, and you return to the base h4> At low altitude, you can easily control the drone independently monitor the main indicators of direction. But good speed copter along the length of "radio-leash" promote experimentation with a range and height, and hence some time, you can easily lose sight of the piece of metal. And then the choice is limited: or rely on cluttered with noise from the range image from the camera, or give up and call back copter.

Right out of the box drone set to the so-called "phantom mode", which hides its advanced flight opportunities. And if you're new to the quad-piloting, but want to fly and look around right now - this is exactly what you need. Included and flew, and if something goes wrong and you miss the copter out of sight - just turn off the console and the drone itself is returned. He rises to a height of 18m and a GPS slowly returns to the point where it was turned on, and then landed smoothly.

If you want more drive - with the help of PC \ Mac application and a USB cable, you can turn on NAZA mode, which involves additional switches on the top of the remote.

The first switch S1 thus becomes the choice between GPS \ ATTI. And just adds ATTI drone drive, increasing maneuverability and turning off some of the airbags. Bottom position switch allows you to select automatic return (did not need to turn off the console), or full manual control.

Usually the manual mode option causes the increased interest of the pilot, but still try not to use it until you have enough experience. In this option, no drone GPS-limiters or auto height adjustment, or something else smart and automatic. The unit is able to get up unthinkable zigzags under the fingers of an experienced pilot, or roll over propellers kite down and jerk to the ground ... The best option is still limited automatic return.

Switch S2 on the left also gets an opportunity. In the "up" drone flying in the usual way, but when I switch up both switches, the behavior copter will be indistinguishable from the factory phantom mode. Translation S2 in the middle position activates the lock of the course.

Blocking rate changes the perception of drone directions forward, backward, left and right with the relative to the absolute. For example, pressing the left stick forward to send the drone is not in the direction of its current orientation, and wherever he was sent during initial calibration GPS.

Since the camera can be rotated only steer the whole drone mode ESP locking can be useful if you want to cool to shoot at a speed with the rotation of the camera. For example, so you can get a video of a moving car in the news as a police helicopter.

Lower position S2 is perhaps the most useful - it's home lock. Regime is largely similar to directional lock, but the binding is already to the point of initial GPS-binding. That is, wherever they are copter, "back" for him will always be toward the house.

This mode is very useful if the copter still lost, but return it fully automatically for some reason do not want. Then translate S2 in its lowest position, click the left stick to him and after some time at the first turn will happily buzzing drone.

Again, a few words about the software. Mobile app we've seen, but what about the desktop? Software for Mac expected repeats the fate of mobile counterpart, showing a designer's nightmare and incomprehensible jumble of scattered items. That is, the application of external trying to fit into the ecosystem of OS X, but does not do it in the best way. In addition, many English-language menu items are full of errors. Since the company DJI comes from China, localization of the interface most likely was entrusted bad employee who knows the language. And the general organization of items is far from ideal, and to find the right option is often necessary step through almost all the bookmarks.

Fortunately, this software need not communicate often, and the ability of flight and control gadget unsuccessful program interface has no effect.

The sad ode battery h4> The only thing that disappointed in the Phantom 2 Vision + - is its battery. Despite the fact that the copter equipped with a battery 5200mAch on this stock for a long time is not enough. The manufacturer stated flight time of 25 minutes, but our experience shows that within 10-15 minutes the battery is discharged to 30% and in the application appear low-battery warning. Drone itself is blinking indicator Low voltage.

Naturally, the stronger the wind and steeper bends - the faster the charge ends. The longest flight to 21min turned on a windless day when the drone mostly hung motionless in the air. With active maneuvering at high speeds copter lasted only 10 minutes.

I will never allow the device to be discharged below 25%, as the prospect of rapid uncontrolled flight to land a few bogey. One could certainly squeeze a few more minutes when the battery is low, but it's too expensive toy to do so.

If you want to spend a couple of hours in flight - will have to stock up on extra batteries. Each battery costs about 6000r, although you can save a little and buy a set of drones and extra batteries.

Where to fly and not fly eagles h4> Being larger than average with birds and flight height of three hundred meters, Phantom 2 Vision + represents a real threat to the aircraft of all sizes. Realizing this, DJI has made some limitations in the firmware copter.

If copter finds that 8 km closer to the registered area of ​​operations, it will begin a gradual decline. The closer to the airport - the lower the drone fly, but for a couple of kilometers and did refuse to take off.

These limits are programmable, but it will take to bring the drone of the phantom mode. With the factory settings as he refuses to work alongside any air terminal. We are at the airport in Houston for tests of course did not go, but the forums are full of discussions on this topic. So that restrictions do work.

Last rise and impressions h4> In part, this survey was preparing for so long because the control drone really cool - how could I delayed the moment of return of the gadget. Indeed, despite the small battery life, the thrill of launching copter to a height of one hundred and fifty meters incredible. Such a flight with a stunningly smooth video shooting gives a sense of their own jetpack, and I almost do not exaggerate.

In fact, the flight itself - it is only half the fun. The other half is that after the 15-minute session to come home, eagerly extract video from SD card and spend another 15 minutes thoughtful contemplation little trip.

Almost everywhere I took with Phantom 2 Vision +, people paid no attention to him. But no one really cared and did not attack me, that pleases (as in the case with the American on the beach). Everyone who came closer, obviously was downright fascinated by drones and especially live video of the flight.

Source: habrahabr.ru/company/madrobots/blog/231865/


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