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Do many of you have a Tello along with a larger drone?

Ansia

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I have several drones.

I own an Atom 1.0 mini drone to play with my cats. My tello for practicing in doors and in the basketball court at my condo. I also own 2 P4Ps. Use them for work purposes. Used to be 3, but one flew away and never returned. We will miss you Tatin 1! :cry:
 

Storyline

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Yeah have several.
.....
Otherwise build 5 racers by now and had some fun flying with them.
I have a bit Lego complex with those though. The building is more fun to me than the actual racing or acro.

As a result many are by now 'upgraded' beyond what racers would seem useful or desirable with GPS, LEDs, additional cameras, etc. Trying out different flight controllers and software, just to get an idea of what you can do as an amateur drone builder.
Most of them are in parked on my workbench semi permanently.

So back to the beginning as by now I'd like to explore aerial photography a bit further.
Plan is to buy a new mavick pro but need to convince the wife still and safe up the cash.
To entertain her a bit, I bought the tello and so far we both love it. Joining on our next holiday trip to Greece.
Hi Brammieman - you sound like you might be able to give some advice if you would not mind please.

I have a Mavic Pro which I love and I have become interested in all the sensors and systems it has.

I have a long history of on and off model building. Every 2 or 3 years I get the urge to build something and over the years I have built gliders, fixed wing and helicopters. I admit to getting more pleasure learning about the build and then the actual build than flying them.

I have been thinking of building a drone and maybe putting a good camera on it. I wonder if you could answer any of these questions please.

I know you can get the air frames and motors, esc's etc but can you get electronics that make it as stable and as easy to fly as the Mavic - some kind of inertia unit maybe ?
Can you add GPS so it will stay on station and not go with the wind.
Can you add a barometer so it will transmit back its height ?
Any other hi-tech type sensors available ?

I know you can get 3 axis gimbal so the easy way is to hang a camera and start it filming before take off. Is it possible to control it from the ground ?

Sorry for so many questions - if you do not have much time then any answers would be good - thanks :)
 

chabbab

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I'll jump in before he really writes a long answer to all these questions:
Yes, all that can be done. Head over to RCgroups.com where they have suiteable forums with all the details.
Basically you are looking into a fligt controller that can make use of GPS and a telemetry overlay.

What can -as far as I know- not be done is optical flow sensors and collision avoidance. Also the telemetry data is typically overlaid over the FPV video signal so its not digital data you can grab and make look nice.
So there are rough edges you can't iron out easily. Thats why commercial drones like DJI or Parrot cost some money to develop.
 

Storyline

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.....
What can -as far as I know- not be done is optical flow sensors and collision avoidance. Also the telemetry data is typically overlaid over the FPV video signal so its not digital data you can grab and make look nice.
So there are rough edges you can't iron out easily. Thats why commercial drones like DJI or Parrot cost some money to develop.
Thanks for the reply - I had not thought of Rcgroups but used to go there quite a bit and got useful advice about action cameras.

It all sounds interesting - by coincidence i have the optical flow sensors turned off and I do not use collision avoidance either so they will not be a drawback. I am more concerned about having a system that can enable a self built UAV just hold a stable hover. I have built a couple of electric helicopters with just fairly crude gyros to stop the tail rotor stepping out. They sound great in theory but despite having only one motor to control they were a real handful to hover, let alone fly ! After many, many hours on the computer simulator I was able to hover and fly nose in but eventually the inevitable happened and both of them are in boxes in the attic - in pieces ;). I have also built a .30 size nitro powered helicopter. This has a rotor that must be 4' in diameter. I only started the engine in the garden once to test all the systems. As soon as the rotor started to turn I instinctively jumped backwards. I was suddenly aware of the huge amount of power it had and the damage it could do. What on earth made me build it - I must have been mad. One day I plan to take it to a large field and from a long distance get it into the air. Apparently they are much easier to fly than the smaller helis as everything happens quite slowly. It is bound to crash but even if I have 5 or 10 minutes of fun/terror it is better than it just sitting in the attic :)

To have GPS in a home made drone would be a nice extra. I am also not too worried about having pretty telemetry, just the data is ok.

I have a pair of DJI Goggles so I will have to find out if DJI sells any Occusync equipment or if not whether there any other way I could use them. None of it sounds cheap so I will have to get saving !
 

chabbab

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GPS & waypoint navigations isn't an issue anymore for homebuilts. Not that I have ever build my own, but I had a closer look into the technology involved.

However you will never achieve many things a commercial drone can do out of the box. Flight times up to 30 minutes, easy to program waypoint flights some 8km away, perfectly stable video footage, automatically pointing the camera at a point of interest while circling around and even flying over it, follow me including object tracking, etc
The Bebop 2 can do all of this and more, without restricting you like the DJI ones do. No-Flight zone or not, Bebop doesn't care. You can grab a slightly used one for around ~150 Euro on ebay.

OK, video footage isn't the best, a bit blurry 720p. Low light is bad particularly, and still photo quality is on par or even worse than Tello. But really good for FPV

But for me the coolest feature: Fly it far far away in a rural setting, press the RTH button and hand the VR goggles over to the kids. With headtracking they can look up, down, left and right as they please while the drone slowly travels back home. My kids love it.
 
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Storyline

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GPS & waypoint navigations isn't an issue anymore for homebuilts. Not that I have ever build my own, but I had a closer look into the technology involved.
.....
The Bebop 2 can do all of this and more, without restricting you like the DJI ones do. No-Flight zone or not, Bebop doesn't care. You can grab a slightly used one for around ~150 Euro on ebay.
.....
But for me the coolest feature: Fly it far far away in a rural setting, press the RTH button and hand the VR goggles over to the kids. With headtracking they can look up, down, left and right as they please while the drone slowly travels back home. My kids love it.
Sounds great :)

A couple of questions please
Do you happen to know if it would work with the DJI goggles ?
As a matter of interest, you obviously have looked into this in detail, may I ask why you did not go further and build your own UAV ?

I understand the limitations and I do not think they would put me off too much. What motivates me is to attach a 3 axis gimbal and then hang my Sony RX100 from it or something similar. I realise I will probably not have real time control over the camera so would just set it to Auto and start it filming before take off.

Finally your post has just given me an exciting idea. Although I have a pair of RE Edition Goggles I have never used them with the Mavic as I have not had it very long and I have spent so much time learning about getting the best out of its average camera. Also I am a bit nervous tbh of flying on my own using just the Goggles. I know this is not allowed but I could easily take my better half to comply. That is not what puts me off though (I am a believer in me making the decision as to what is safe or not, and not always complying with rules I think unreasonable). The reason I am nervous is I might not feel in control.
However your post has solved all that :) I have recently bought Litchi which is an alternative to the DJI app and which has waypoint functionality. I can set up a flight, take off manually, fly to where I want to start, start the Litchi 'Mission', put on the Goggles, enjoy the ride ! I think this will give me the confidence to fly FPV real time after a while.

Thanks again
Paul

Edit: Parrot do different models of the Bebop 2 - plain Bebop 2, Bebop 2 FPV and Bebop 2 Power - which one is the one to get ?
 

chabbab

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DJI goggles are special beast. I doubt they work ith anything but DJI products. The only open interface appears to be HDMI. So any 5.8Ghz FPV receiver that can feed out HDMI should do. this one for example:
Vuzix | iWear® 5.8 GHz Diversity FPV Receiver - Built in DVR and A/V to HDMI Conversion

Or if you have an android phone with dedicated HDMI output there are 5.8Ghz that feed into the phone (FPV in via USB, HDMI out via dedicated HDMI).

The Sony RX100 is over 200gr, that would kill flight performance even for a Bebop 2. You'd need a larger drone for this to work, and even that would suffer from overloading.
I have a Canon Powershot which I can control remotely. Range is maybe 15m, compared to 300m control range for the Bebop (just using the phone, way more with extender). So remotely controlling the camera will severly limit your range, and lag is way beyond what can work for FPV.

FPV may be allowed depending on where you live / fly. Over here (Germany) its legal only with a second person within line of sight, or (which is one reason I have a Tello) using a drone under 250gr and flying under 30m height. Personally I fell FPV is very easy to fly as long as the video feed is dependable (or RTH works reliably). Actually I never lost / crashed / dropped my Bebops while in FPV. Landing is of course always a LOS activity unless you know exacty where you are and what you do.


Differences between the Bebop models:
Bebop 1 is the original smaller drone which has short flight times, around 10 minutes I think. Also trouble with GPS reliability causing flyaways, motors shutting down midflight, etc. Highly not recommended. Bought one at Amazon years ago and returned it twice after it dropped out of the sky for no reason.

Bebop 2 is larger, much faster, can do full 23minutes on stock battery, or just under 30min on upsized aftermarket batteries. Best bang for the buck. Starting at 160 Euro on ebay, good ones closer to 200 Euro. New sometimes around 250 Euro.

Bebop 2 FPV is the same, bundled with a remote skycontroller and simple VR goggles for your phone. Personally I prefer a good range extender and the Parrot flypad (excellent BT controller, sensitivity and precision on par with the skycontroller but more compact and modular)

Bebop 2 Power is a model with different batteries, providing 0 miuntes on stock batteries. I think it uses higher voltages, different chargers, and main boards. I'd rather get an extended battery for the standard B2

Cheers!
 

Storyline

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Thanks for the comprehensive reply chabbab :)

Yes, the Goggles have got HDMI in but unfortunately most manufacturers have stopped putting HDMI out on their budget phones and tablets. I have an old tablet with it but I doubt it will be powerful enough to use. I have got a Microsoft Surface Pro which has a MiniDisplay port and I think I can get an adapter but it is a bit big to use outside maybe.

Yes, I thought the RX100 might be pushing it but it is the holy grail in terms of image quality for that size. I saw when looking at Ebay for Parrots that you can buy a mount for a Gopro. I have not yet checked to see if that could be gimballed but that would be an alternative as you can get very good quality gopro clones at reasonable prices. Nothing like as good as the RX100 but better than the Mavic camera.Should I go down the Bebop route I would definitely want a controller, it is a pity I couldn't use the GameSir T1d that I use for the Tello. I jumped into that without really realising it was model specific.

The rules here for FPV sound similar - you say you are in Germany - please do not say your mother tongue is German as your written English is perfect and my German is null ! (ah, now I understand where a 'null' comes from). You have to have two people and of course everything is LoS. I take a pragmatic view. In any kind of area with people and property I think it is reasonable but my wife and I spend quite a bit of time each summer in Scotland and some places there are really remote and I would have no qualms flying solo .....

Thanks for the info on the Bepop range. Time for some research. Price is not the only issue as despite having recently taken early retirement, it is time that is my most precious resource. Apart from running our house, as my wife still works, I am learning a complex architectural design program so I can draw up plans and project manage a stables conversion. Learning DaVinci Resolve video editor, building an electric bike and also writing ridiculously long posts on the Mavic pilots site when having breaks from the tutorials. I am also currently tempted by the Mavic Air, the Mavic 2 Pro, DIY UAV and now the Bebop. I know it is a corny old phrase but seriously I really don't know how I had the time for work ;)
 

chabbab

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Yes, I'm german but I worked in the IT sector for two decades so its English all the time. Funny when you start dreaming in a foreign language and in the middle of the dream you realize that you are missing a certain word :)

The Parrot is nice for playing around FPV in a distant. Especially when you are in an area without legal restrictions - or where restrictions are just ridiculous, like in the middle of the US where the next victim of your drone is possibly 20km away or a deserted island in off-season Greece.
The Bebop has been modified for about 5km range I think, bt that requires hardware mods (onboard amplifiers). Personally I have done over 3km when following some friends sailing off in their sailboat, using only the Bebop, the Flypad controller (10 bucks at ebay) and the Xiaomi Nano Youth range extender (about 15 bucks back then).

The Parrot flypad is very very different from a usual bluetooth controller. Excellent sensitivity and precision. Its on par with the larger Parrot Skycontroller and mature RC controllers. Not like the BT controller which can only o full steam ahead and have a deadzone of almost 50%.

There are apps around that can fly the Bebop using normal BT controllers. Maybe the Gamesir can act as a standard BT controller. Otherwise just sell it on ebay.

But keep in mind the Parrot camera is really not up to what the DJIs can do. OK for FPV but otherwise just a joke.
 
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Storyline

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Yes, will bear in mind the camera quality. It is a joke sometimes when a product says it is capable of 1080 full HD yet the results look like someone has smeared oil on the lens. It is a pity that there has never been a quality standard developed.

As in some parts of the rural USA, Scotland also has a very low population density once outside what they call the 'Central Belt' where Glasgow & Edinburgh are. Also as we live on our boat when we are up there we can anchor sometimes many miles from the nearest population. That is one reason I am not happy with the DJI geofencing and particular the 400' altitude limit. Very occasionally an aircraft will fly over but they are at their cruising height of 35k+ feet and I don't want to go that high ! I would like to go to 1000-1500 feet sometimes though if we are anchored amongst a group of small islands so I can get all the little islands in the one shot.

The only thing to be wary of is that N/W corner of the UK is popular with NATO as a training area. Sometimes a Typhoon Eurofighter will come screaming out of nowhere and fly over very low. On three occasions when we have been the only boat in a large area of sea we have become a target and maybe 5 or 6 planes descend rapidly in the distance and fly towards and over us at maybe under 100 feet. Each time it happened the last plane in the group did a barrel roll as passed over. This never happens randomly though as there are regular warnings broadcsst on VHF Ch16. If it is a very big exercise with many NATO countries they may also block the GPS signal for a few hours. Again, plenty of warnings but it would definitely not be a suitable day for the Mavic ! I very much enjoy not having GPS as it has taken a lot of the romance out of sailing. We have to dig out the hand bearing compass and actually plot positions and our course on the chart for goodness sake ;)

It is possible to rollback the firmware to versions pre the altitude limit but it is not easy on later models of the Mavic Pro which mine is. A Parrot with a gopro clone could be an affordable 2nd aerial platform for when the geofence gets in the way of what I want to do. It would certainly be cheaper than self-build but without the fun of construction. I also quite like the idea of buying second hand as if it proved not suitable I could easily just re-sell it and only take a minor financial hit - umm, very tempting :)

Anyway, time to stop rabbiting on and get up Ebay !
 

chabbab

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Bebop camera is ok, just take the raw fish lens picture and manipulate it by hand.

If you want to get into FPV you need cheap VR goggles, i have the fiit vr 2. And a phone with a decent screen PPI, like the galaxy s6.
The best android app for fpv using goggles and the flypad is Auriga Bebop which is easier than the parrot app and has very nice HUD telemetry.
It can also bypass the bebop altitude limit of 150m. I have flown up to about 350m when starting at sea level and then going up the rocky coast of some islands, but basically always under 50m above the terrain.
I tried flying higher a few times but there just isn't anything to see up there that keeps me interested so i just don't do that anymore.

One thing which i don't like about the bebop. It needs a non moving platform for takeoff. That means the gps fix must not move or the beebop doesn't take off. So you can't start from a sailboat under sail. Landing on a moving sailboat is also not easy. I hover just above deck level with the control in one hand and grab the bebop with the other. Then tilt it over 90deg so it shuts off. Worked well so far

We have a large solar array at the stern of our catamaran, which is good for starting and landing at anchor.
 

MBDonahue

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I have a Mavic Pro - tons of fun! Going to Iceland so bought Tello to take along - tons of fun too!
 

Storyline

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If you want to get into FPV you need cheap VR goggles, i have the fiit vr 2. And a phone with a decent screen PPI, like the galaxy s6.
The best android app for fpv using goggles and the flypad is Auriga Bebop which is easier than the parrot app and has very nice HUD telemetry.
.....
One thing which i don't like about the bebop. It needs a non moving platform for takeoff. That means the gps fix must not move or the beebop doesn't take off. So you can't start from a sailboat under sail. Landing on a moving sailboat is also not easy. I hover just above deck level with the control in one hand and grab the bebop with the other. Then tilt it over 90deg so it shuts off. Worked well so far

We have a large solar array at the stern of our catamaran, which is good for starting and landing at anchor.
Thanks for some more useful info. I take your point about the kit needed for FPV. It sounds at first glance that the goggles are just a holder for the phone which provides the image. Unfortunately I have just got a new phone so do not want to get another - it might not be the best as I chose it because I want stock Android and this is as close to stock as you can get. It is a Moto G6 plus - also I have a sentimental attachment with the previous versions of this phone and it's distant ancestors ;) I will have to check - maybe the screen will do the job.

The Mavic Pro also has a problem taking off from a moving platform - not because of GPS but it has an IMU (Intertia Measurement Unit) which must confirm calibration on power on and any movement and it will fail.

Regarding the Bebop, I would not take off when we were under sail so at anchor would be fine. I am used to hand catching drones as I owned one of the original Phantoms when they were released. They were easy as they had long legs to grab - I have not dared with the Mavic but people do. One of the attractions of the Bebop is that I can be a bit less precious with it - losing $200 is a lot different to $1,000. Unfortunately we have no large area for take off but I was going to use the floor of our inflatable dinghy which is quite large and flat. The alternative is to use a collapsible round helipad I always use and balance it somewhere but there is so much wire rigging around ! I tried flying the Tello that way a couple of months ago and learnt a valuable lesson which is that it takes a second or two to get control of the drone so you can respond to its movements. It had been a total flat calm morning drinking coffee in the cockpit when I had the idea of flying it - and it was only by an amazing bit of good luck that the first gust of wind of the day blew it into the boom and it dropped at my feet. It had only been airborne for about a couple of seconds and I just had not had the time to take control. I am quite used to flying the Tello outside in light winds and as long as you can respond to the gusts it is no problem.

If I took the Bepob off from the dinghy floor I could immediately ascend to as safe altitude say 15-20 feet without any obstructions in the way. Then I could fly off from there.

All exciting stuff !
 

sunny_sahdev

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I have DJI Phantom 3 4K, Have bought Tello as its light and do not involve legalities. AS its a Tiny drone weighing only 80 gms.
 
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Flydrone

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Il mio primo drone ... solo DJI TELLO! ora ne possiedo dovuto e lo trovo davvero fantastico!(Y)

Il mio contenuto
x2 dji tello
Caricatore HUB x2 per Tello (un modello originale: G1CH e uno smatree portatile DT30)
x 3 batterie
X1 extender Wifi Mi 2
X1 Cellularline Freepower 5200 mAh
X1 Gamesir dt1
x 8 motori di riserva
X 10 eliche di ricambio
X1 HYZH PGYTECH borsa per violoncello


Cavo auto-costruito per collegare la batteria dji Tello al caricatore ISDT (lo uso per la conservazione del lipo dji tello a 3,80 volt).

dispositivo: SAMSUNG Galaxy NOTE 3 Neo os 5.1.1

saluti dall'italia;)
 

Mike Shock

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I never had a copter before. Last year I was presented with a DJI Mavic Air. And I bought a Tello Edu specially for learning to fly before flying on my MAvic Air.
But I liked flying my Tello copter. And especially I liked programming my Tello. So I bought one more Tello Edu to try swarming.
 

ChristoffB

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Tello first then bought a Spark. The Spark is amazing
Did exactly the same. Still kept the tello though. Also for practicing purposes and just for the fun and worry-free flying. The tello crashes quite good (if you can put it that way - had a few mishaps without propguards while in fast mode and only managed to have a prop pop off, not even broken!).
 

scottalmas

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Ditto. I tend to fly the Tello indoors during the never-ending Northeast winters and rainy springs. I have a Spark for travel and recreational use (on the golf course, in the park, etc.) and an Anafi for higher and more distant flights, and 4k cinematic video or higher quality stills. I know the Spark is certainly capable of that stuff, but I just haven't had the courage to really spread her wings. i need to get over that!
 

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