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Posted by natester | Feb 04, 2016 @ 12:57 AM | 2,220 Views
Rctimer just released the new BeerotorF3 (BRF3) all-in-one (AIO) flight controller.

Check out the full review and guide here:

You probably know why having an OSD that displays current consumption is so important, but I'll reiterate it anyway. A current sensor measures the exact amount of battery that has been used and the OSD displays this information as text overlaid on your video feed along with all the other available sensor data like RSSI, Voltage, mA currently in use, total mAh consumed, flight mode, an artificial horizon and GPS coordinates. This way you know exactly when you're going to run out of battery.

The BRF3 adds a barometer which will give you altitude information as you fly.

Before the BRF3, to get all my stats to display on an OSD, I had to build something like this, with a mess of different wires and 4 discrete components:

With the BeerotorF3, the current sensor, dataflash logger, PDB and OSD look like this:

...Continue Reading
Posted by natester | Dec 11, 2015 @ 03:33 AM | 1,746 Views
The BeeRotor 160 from Rctimer is an awesome micro-quad frame that, when paired with the OZE32, can carry a Naze32, MinimOSD, current sensor, and still protect up to a 1500mah battery inside the frame!

Checkout the review and build guide for everything you need to know to build your own:

Skip to the build section if you've already read the review:

This is the only frame in the 150mm class that I've seen with HD vibration damping camera mounts.

Without a battery, it weighs in at 158g. With a 900mah 3s it hovers at 1/3 throttle.

With a 900mah 3s battery and a Xiaomi Yi camera, it weighs in at 295g and hovers at 1/2 throttle.

...Continue Reading
Posted by natester | Nov 13, 2015 @ 09:37 PM | 2,016 Views
The OZE32 from RCTimer is a Naze32 with an integrated current sensor and MinimOSD.

This is a great way to get an OSD into a micro quad.

Checkout the review and setup guide here:

If you already have your hardware setup, skip to the firmware setup section and flash the Naze32 and MinimOSD:

Feel free to email, PM or leave a comment with suggestions or corrections.
Posted by natester | Jul 07, 2015 @ 11:52 PM | 2,195 Views
Not too long ago, I built my first FPV250 quadcopter.

Before building, I went through the great component list by Oscar Liang, tabularized it and added some data to pick the components with the biggest bang for the buck.

Here's the Google sheet with all the parts:

And here I summarize why I picked the components I did, plus show the build log:

After building it I'm super happy, the only thing I would change is that I would have bought a full Naze32 clone (Flip32) instead of the CC3D flight controller. The CC3D is great for acro mode, but having altitude hold and the opportunity to add GPS would be nice and for $10 more, totally worth it.

Suggestions / corrections and improvements are welcome.

Hope this is useful to someone.

Posted by natester | Jun 03, 2015 @ 12:29 AM | 2,898 Views
Read the full article, with photos, to learn how to DIY yourself some ultraHD goggles for less than $25:

FliteTest was recently in the Bay Area and had a siiiick meetup. I’d never been to a flying event before – it was awesome. Met lots of cool folks who taught me how to fly safely with other people, thanks Nathan2 from Oakland!

While I was signing up for a 5.8ghz video channel, lots of folks were asking about my googles. Here they are in action. That’s my daughter spotting for me. Good job, Abigail!

Inspired by FliteTest, these are my DIY 3D “Go FPV” goggles. They have much higher resolution, depending on your phone, than Fatsharks and are waaaay cheaper as well. What is the resolution of these goggles you ask? Using my Nexus 5, which runs at 445 PPI 1080p IPS, that’s 1920x1080 pixels. The screen is split between both eyes, so each eye gets 960x1080. Plus, if you have 2 cameras, they’re capable of realtime 3D video. Awesome!

The physical goggles are just Google Cardboard with a Boscam RC805 Video Receiver (I use this Boscam TS351 transmitter) velcroed on and hooked up to an analog to digital converter (ADC) that speaks the UVC protocol. You’ll need a USB OTG cable to hook up the ADC to your phone. This cable and the other cables big and bulky, so I soldered on my own shorter, lighter cables, including a custom made OTG cable. I also soldered in a JST connector, so I...Continue Reading
Posted by natester | Apr 21, 2015 @ 11:15 PM | 3,428 Views
I've just finished flashing BlHeli on some HobbyKing F20 ESCs with an Arduino Nano. I had to pull together how to do this from a bunch of different places, so I've compiled all the steps.

Let me know if anything needs clarification or I missed anything.

The formatted version with images is here:

Step 1. Gather Tools


Here is the $3.60 Chinese Arduino Nano Clone I used:
chinese Arduino Nano Clone

If you use this specific Nano clone, it uses a ch340g usb chip, the driver for which is here:


Since we’ll be using BlHeli’s Windows app to flash the ESCs, You’ll need a VM. I have a mac, skip this if you already have Windows. I used Vmware Fusion this free Windows XP VM, straight from Microsoft:
curl -O -L " me=VMBuild_20141027/VMware/IE6/Mac/{.001,.002}"

BlHeli Suite

Download the BlHeli Suite from the sketchy-ist looking post ever: Here is the direct download from that page Media Fire Link Best I can tell, this is the right place to get it from. If anyone knows where the source code for the BlHeliSuite is, let me know. I’d much prefer to compile this myself. Alternatively, I have a copy of the version I used in this guide DropBox Link.

For your...Continue Reading
Posted by natester | Apr 13, 2015 @ 01:26 AM | 3,346 Views
When trying to decide what size batteries to get for my new mini-quad, I did some pricing analysis, starting with Since ordering from hobbyking is always a bit of a gamble, I hope to add a few more suppliers soon and get a relative view of pricing across the landscape. I am curious about the actual pack composition. If anyone knows what manufacturers (aka, factories) make these, shoot me an email. I’d love to talk to them directly and find out if there is any real difference between brands and suppliers.

To use this report, pick the number of cells S from the selector on the right, Weight and any other properties on which you want to filter.

Note that the Discharge filter allows you to pick a pack that has an adequate C rating, regardless of the mah rating. Simply drag the bottom slider up to the maximum amp draw of your aircraft. E.g. my miniquad will draw at most 11.5amps/motor on a 4S so I would set the minimum Discharge filter to 11.5 x 4 = 46

Here is the data: