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  1. #1
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    Question Newbie Camera /FPV question(s)

    I'm fairly new to quads in general and I know almost nothing about how the cameras and FPV stuff is supposed to work. I do have 2 degrees in computer science though, so I understand WiFi thoroughly. Here's what I'm not getting. The Aton is set up for a GoPro, but the GoPro operates on 2.4 gHz. There's even a warning to disable the GoPro WiFi before flying. So how do you control it in flight? How do you see what the camera sees? Surely you don't just turn it on and hope you get a shot you like. I know I must be missing something here. Any help is appreciated

    Note: I don't have the Aton yet, but as soon as payday rolls around I'll be emptying my toys budget to get one. This is one really cool quad that I can get just for flying and add the camera & FPV stuff a little at a time as my budget allows. Really one of the best I've seen for the price.

    Ed

  2. #2
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    You are right you just fly it and get video. Traxxas is coming out with Fpv framing, that is what you are after. I expect we will see it soon. Or you can buy these and not wait.
    http://m.ebay.com/itm/262201856716?_...FdJbhgod_IkAgA
    http://m.banggood.com/Fatshark-5_8G-...FdJbhgod_IkAgA
    Fly it like you stole it!

  3. #3
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    Or spend the bucks and do it right the 1st time.
    http://www.helipal.com/storm-all-in-...o-premium.html
    If traxxas doesnt release theres by next month then will get this for my aton.

  4. #4
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    Ok. This is starting to make a little better sense to me. bearcatrp, that Storm setup looks pretty cool, but it's beyond my budget for a while. In the example Reavesbj provided, do I understand correctly that the Fatshark transmitter is installed in the quad and then the cable is used to connect to the camera? Also, do you know if that would work for something like the smaller Hero 4 Session? And what are the bare wires supposed to attach to?

    Guess I should have mentioned that I'm using Samsung Galaxy S4 as a monitor/app control for the time being. And is that how you control the camera after it's all connected? Through an app?

    Thanks for helping me.

    Ed
    Last edited by CuttinEJ; 02-08-2016 at 08:16 PM. Reason: Additional information

  5. #5
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    No you would need a 5.8 monitor or goggles. The bear wires would not be used. You will spend right much money all together. Bearcat post is a nice seat up. But would be a little more expensive.
    http://m.ebay.com/itm/181766417320
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  6. #6
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    Hi. Thanks for the info. I think I'm starting to get it, but I still have a ton of questions about how it all sets up and how you control it. I wrote down the ones that came to mind first in the reply just above this one, then I noticed you were online so... I actually sent you a private message yesterday after reading another post you wrote. You must not have seen that one yet.

    Thanks for any help.

    Ed

    Quote Originally Posted by Reavesbj View Post
    You are right you just fly it and get video. Traxxas is coming out with Fpv framing, that is what you are after. I expect we will see it soon. Or you can buy these and not wait.
    http://m.ebay.com/itm/262201856716?_...FdJbhgod_IkAgA
    http://m.banggood.com/Fatshark-5_8G-...FdJbhgod_IkAgA

  7. #7
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    My first post had the wrong cable. Sorry.
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/2718054...chn=ps&lpid=82
    Fly it like you stole it!

  8. #8
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    You can't use a GoPro session for video out it is all digital. You would need a GoPro 3. It has analog.
    Fly it like you stole it!

  9. #9
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    Hello again, Reavesbj. I was asking while you were answering. Sorry I got a little out of sync. All I'm really trying to do right now is figure out how it all works and maybe set up something that would allow me to see what I can see while in flight. Doesn't have to be high quality HD or anything like that. I have a Samsung Galaxy S4 that is 5.8 gHz. It works with my little Blade Glimpse. I figure if I can get something set up on the Aton fairly inexpensively I could learn what components I need and how they work together and how to control the video functions. Then later on I could move up to more expensive equipment. I asked about the Hero4 Session because it's GoPro and only costs $199. Thanks for helping me get a handle on this. I know I just about need to be led by the hand at 1st, but I suppose eveeryone does.

    Ed

  10. #10
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    I did it again. Asking while you were answering. Sorry.

    Ok, so the Session is out. Do you know of any other cameras that would work in that price range? I looked at the GoPro 3 & 3+. They were nearly as expensive as the newer GoPro 4's. I'm not prepared to spend quite that much just yet.

  11. #11
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    Ok, so if I understand this so far:

    1st I need a compatible analog output camera. Then I connect the camera to the transmitter with the cable you showed me. Then the transmitter sends the pic to whatever I'm using for a monitor (in my case a Galaxy S4)

    I'm guessing the transmitter creates a wifi network that I connect the Galaxy to just like the Blade Glimpse does?

    At that point, how is it controlled? Is there an app you use or something like that? I saw that Traxxas has Flight Link for adjusting the Aton, but it didn't say anything about camera control.

  12. #12
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    Fly it like you stole it!

  13. #13
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    Just take the cmos camera and attach it to the bottom or side of the session and you will see what it does. And the cmos has a much faster response time than a GoPro. The go pros have a lag to them. A lot of different ways you can do it. That would be the least expensive.
    Fly it like you stole it!

  14. #14
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    Wow! Thank you. This is pretty cool and I think I understand it. (I watched your YouTube video too.) So the idea is that when this is powered on the Tx and Rx bind and the monitor displays what the cam sees as long as it's powered on. Then the Session just records the whole time to a SD card and I can edit out what I want later. Is that about the size of it? And thank you so much for guiding me through this. I'm not rich by any stretch of the imagination but I think I can afford to get all this rounded up before too long. Gotta get the Aton 1st though. That will be on order this coming payday.

    Ed

  15. #15
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    Exactly! I'm exited for you man. The Aton is a blast you will love it.
    Fly it like you stole it!

  16. #16
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    Tada!!!! I love it when I learn something. Yeah I'm pretty excited about getting the Aton too. I've studied quite a few in detail and watched more videos than I can remember. Seems to me this one can be docile enough for me to perfect my flying skills and wild enough to allow me to do whatever I become capable of. I'm still fairly new to quads. The hardest part for me so far is orientation and altitude. The Aton's GPS will allow me to stabilize and hold the altitude. The flight link app will allow me to adjust the tilt and speed parameters so I can practice maneuvers and turns at a rate I can keep up with as I learn. And if I get in trouble I can always just hit the air brake button while I get myself straightened out. Plus all the FPV and video and Mission Planner..... Wow! this one bird has the potential to keep me busy and happy for a very long time. I'll probably start a thread of my own when it arrives so I can show off as I learn. I can't wait. Thank you again for helping me figure this part out. Hope you don't mind if I hit you up for information and advice from time to time.

    Ed

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  18. #18
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    Thank you for the links. Yes it is an awful lot to take in. Kind of a steep learning curve, but well worth the effort I think. Don't think I'm quite ready for goggles yet. So far it's all I can do to keep oriented when it turns and maintain enough altitude to keep from crashing. But the quad I have now is NOTHING like the Aton. I was surprised to find that the one I have now is actually easier to keep up with when it's dark enough to see the lights. I just wish the rear lights weren't white. My eyes are a bit light sensitive and a white light is hard to look at. Anyway, thanks again. I sure appreciate it.

    Ed

    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro Penduko View Post

  19. #19
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    Is a power filter needed for any of these FPV setups? Also, how does a power filter and an OSD board hook up with the whole system? I know you need a camera and transmitter, JST plug for power, and a receiver and goggles/screen. Where does the power filter and OSD fit in that config?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slono View Post
    Is a power filter needed for any of these FPV setups? Also, how does a power filter and an OSD board hook up with the whole system? I know you need a camera and transmitter, JST plug for power, and a receiver and goggles/screen. Where does the power filter and OSD fit in that config?
    Kind of a loaded question. The answer is; it depends on what equipment you go with.

    Order is;

    Image capture - image overlay - image transmission - image receiver - image display
    (Camera) (OSD) (Video TX) (Video RX) (Video Screen)

    Camera

    Most FPV is currently analogue and limited to SD.

    Most guys are running CCD. CMOS tends to not react quite as quickly in and out of shadows adjusting exposure, which can be a big deal if your running a racer; it means going from a bright area into shadows could leave you in the darkness or struggle to make out objects while in reverse coming dark to bright could leave you blind for a few seconds as everything is over exposed.

    Video TX (Transmitter)

    Generally the higher the MW rating the more powerful, but in some countries you may need a special license to operate above a certain range. You also run the risk of swamping other nearby users with more powerful ranges. Anything 200mw or more is fine. 600mw is just ridiculous.

    The main thing with your VTX is too get a good skew planar antenna so that the signal it broadcasts is clean and covers a larger area with no blind spots.

    Video RX (video receiver)

    Basically what you will use to receive your signal. Like your TX, you want a good aerial. Some receivers offer Diversity, basically 2 seperate aerials looking for the same signal. These can be good as you can use one aerial input as a skew planar for larger, broader coverage and then a secondary directional antenna that offers a great gain at the expense of coverage.

    Diversity is not necessary but it might be good for the above stated reason. Some receivers can also amplify the signal themselves. It just depends on which receiver you go with.

    Video Display

    You can do a ground station or goggles, it depends on what you plan on using it for really. Goggles are immersive and keep distractions and the outside world out so you can focus entirely on what your quad is seeing for fast FPV flight.

    You could also use a standard LCD screen or panel (preferably with a hood) so glare isn't an issue. This way you can look at the screen to give you the FPV view but also look up and maintain line of sight with the airframe.

    I have both goggles and a ground station. When I am flying by myself and have no one to spot for me I stick with the ground screen as with goggles you have no situation awareness of what's to the side or behind you. Even then when I wear goggles I have my screen going also, just for redundancy reasons.

    Sometimes you may find a ground station screen or goggles have the video receiver built in. You can use these or use a separate receiver and use the video in on the devices, up to you.

    OSD

    I left this till last because it largely depends on what FC you have. You don't need an OSD, I fly without one, but if you want one it's a case of looking at what FC you have and what expansions it offers. The FC in the Aton I believe is the APM, traditionally APM does have an output to an OSD called MinimOSD. There are a lot of OSD's out there, some have inbuilt telemetry, some are more modular and have expansion to add more telemetry options and some are fed telemetry from the main flight controller. It really depends on what you need, what your FC is and what it is capable of.



    Power filters may or may not be necessary. You need to assess this based on what components you choose. Some cameras will only take 5v, some will only take 12v, some will take a fully charged 4S at 16.8v; same with the video transmitter. If using an OSD you need to check what voltage that runs at, also whether it has a regulator or BEC to output the correct voltage for the camera and video tx you use. You may need to wire in regulator yourself between components. A lot of stuff with quads is very DIY; so you're best bet is to just research the components.

    Someone here has already done an FPV conversion on their Aton, you could just ask what they use.

  21. #21
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    Yes, as I have researched there are plenty of ways to accomplish FPV with the Aton. I think I will forgo the OSD as that sounds like a lot of trouble to gain something that I don't necessarily need. At this current time I have a CCD FPV camera, a 200w transmitter and a standalone receiver. I was thinking about buying a diversity LCD screen for a ground station because I only fly by myself and the goggles, like you stated above, take away your awareness. My current problem is trying to find small enough components to fit everything nicely under the canopy. If I need a power filter it will definitely need to be placed on the exterior of the Aton.

    I really want to see if what Traxxas is coming out with is worth waiting for or if I should bite the bullet and get an LCD screen already.

  22. #22
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    None of this stuff is very big. The biggest component will be that you need a 4S battery to fit in the shell somewhere. I've never actually seen an Aton in person but I should imagine there is room in that canopy, if not, time to get out the dremel or rotary tool and make some.

    Just make sure you keep the CG close, the nose should be slightly heavier than the rear and the bulk of the weight around the FC.

  23. #23
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    Last edited by Reavesbj; 02-09-2016 at 01:14 PM.
    Fly it like you stole it!

  24. #24
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    I'm wondering what the 4S battery is for. Reavesbj powered his off of the flight battery. Although I'm sure at some point I'll want to get a 5000 mAh battery to extend flight time and account for extra equipment.

  25. #25
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    I run a filter sometimes but most of the time I get my power from the jst plug on the bottom of the Aton. To run the filter I have to carry a 2s lipo.
    Fly it like you stole it!

  26. #26
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    If you watch the video I show the filter and small battery I use to power it.
    Fly it like you stole it!

  27. #27
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    That's right. I remember now. I just saw that Suteki said something about a 4S and thought that's a pretty big battery. Isn't it? I've been looking around at alternatives to GoPro too. Do you have any opinion about the SJ4000? I read a couple of pretty good reviews and for under $100 it looks like it might be a better choice for someone like me. (Inexperienced and a limited play budget.)

  28. #28
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    I'm still not sure what this cable is for. Reavesbj? Anyone?
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/2718054...chn=ps&lpid=82

  29. #29
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    That cable will take the video from a GoPro and send it to the transmitter. If you don't have a GoPro you can just get a cmos camera and it will directly attach to the transmitter.http://m.banggood.com/Fatshark-600TV...FQ1bhgodKv4Bbg
    Fly it like you stole it!

  30. #30
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    Someone said You can use a cheap CMOS camera. That's the easiest way to get going. See if you like FPV before proceeding.
    The trick with all other cameras is getting a video out cable that's analog and not gigantic. GoPro ones are easy to find. My current setup... 5000 MHa drives Gimbal, 250 mh fpv transmitter, Aton. GoPro has its own battery.

  31. #31
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    Ok. I was a little confused because the original list you gave me also had a FatShark 700 TVL camera. I didn't get a GoPro. I got an ASX ActionPro-X. I wonder if I can use its USB out the same way? It also has an HDMI output. So, to recap, if I understand correctly, I can either use the GoPro or a little FPV camera. If I use this cable, then I'm taking FPV off of the GoPro but not using WiFi. Is that about the size of it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Reavesbj View Post
    That cable will take the video from a GoPro and send it to the transmitter. If you don't have a GoPro you can just get a cmos camera and it will directly attach to the transmitter.http://m.banggood.com/Fatshark-600TV...FQ1bhgodKv4Bbg

  32. #32
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    That's exactly right
    Fly it like you stole it!

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuttinEJ View Post
    Ok. I was a little confused because the original list you gave me also had a FatShark 700 TVL camera. I didn't get a GoPro. I got an ASX ActionPro-X. I wonder if I can use its USB out the same way? It also has an HDMI output. So, to recap, if I understand correctly, I can either use the GoPro or a little FPV camera. If I use this cable, then I'm taking FPV off of the GoPro but not using WiFi. Is that about the size of it?
    You may be able to use it's video out. Not 100% sure
    Fly it like you stole it!

  34. #34
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    Don't use CMOS, get CCD if possible. Most people are running the Sony HS1177 right now.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suteki View Post
    Don't use CMOS, get CCD if possible. Most people are running the Sony HS1177 right now.
    Yup most are using the cheap security cameras like these. Make sure you get a 2.8 lens.

    http://www.securitycamera2000.com/pr...ras-Combo.html

  36. #36
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    How about this all in one unit? Plugs directly into the red JST on the Aton.

    http://www.*********.com/*********/s...ansmitter.html

  37. #37
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    Thanks for all the help, Guys. I think I have a handle on this now. I tried my ASX to laptop last night. Wasn't able to capture video with Sony Movie Studio. Had 2 modes. DV didn't recognize at all. HDV popped up the capture window, but didn't find the device. I think I'll just go with a smaller camera for FPV and use the ASX for video. My local hobby shop has a good on that isn't too expensive. I forget if it's 600 or 700 TVL. He also has a FatShark kit that includes goggles and a transmitter for $199. That will probably be good enough for the girls I dance with.

  38. #38
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    Well... some of you may have seen a thread I started a few days ago about a little FPV cam that didn't work out. I took it back today and my local hobby shop guy let me trade it even up for a FatShark Pilot HD. He said it's comparable to a Mobius(?). Good trade I thought. I also bought an Immersion 5.8 gHz tx for $50. Now all I need is a set of goggles or other display device and I'll have a REAL FPV system. I wish there was some kind of app I could use with my phone, but this tx is analog, which I think means I have to manually set the channel with dip switches to match the rx device. No biggie. I can wait until the 1st and I can still use my ghetto Blade Glimpse setup until then. Thanks for all the good information and help. Especially you, Reavesbj. Our conversations and your videos have been a big help. I really appreciate it.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuttinEJ View Post
    Well... some of you may have seen a thread I started a few days ago about a little FPV cam that didn't work out. I took it back today and my local hobby shop guy let me trade it even up for a FatShark Pilot HD. He said it's comparable to a Mobius(?). Good trade I thought. I also bought an Immersion 5.8 gHz tx for $50. Now all I need is a set of goggles or other display device and I'll have a REAL FPV system. I wish there was some kind of app I could use with my phone, but this tx is analog, which I think means I have to manually set the channel with dip switches to match the rx device. No biggie. I can wait until the 1st and I can still use my ghetto Blade Glimpse setup until then. Thanks for all the good information and help. Especially you, Reavesbj. Our conversations and your videos have been a big help. I really appreciate it.
    No problem, I'm so glad to see you digging in to the Fpv. It's been some of the most fun I've had.
    Fly it like you stole it!

  40. #40
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    Decided I will order the helipal next week. Unless traxxas come out with something similar by next week. Doubtful though. Will create a thread with pics of equipment and installation.

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