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Old Oct 16, 2012, 11:24 AM
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MegaPirate NG on HK MultiWii PRO Flight Controller w/MTK GPS Module

This thread is about Loading MegaPirate NG firmware onto the HK Mega board

WARNING: do NOT follow these instructions to load Megapirates NG firmware unless you do have EXACTLY this Hobby King board.



The thread about running unmodified stock firmware on this board is at http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1726790

There is a LOT of information on this page, don't let it overwhelm you. It is NOT complicated when you do it one step at a time.

I suggest you read all of this page, don't worry if there are parts you don't understand initially, read the whole page.

Then come back and read it a second time, it will then slowly start to make more sense, when you are comfortable that you have a clear idea in your head of all the required steps - only then start implementing it with your HK Mega,

The information on this page is NOT in the order you would use it, and some information about GPS for example may NOT apply to the particular GPS that you have purchased, therefore please read all the information FIRST BEFORE DOING ANYTHING to your board.

************************************************** ************************************************** **************************


Do I need Megapirates NG ?
No, you don;t need to modify the stock standard firmware in the HK Mega as shipped UNLESS you want to use the additional features available in Megapirates NG

Megapirates NG is optional, you don't have to have it unless you want to.

If you are not proficient at using Arduino to modify code then this information may not be for you, carefully consider if you want to learn Arduino FIRST before following any of the instructions in this thread.

If you are not proficient at using Arduino to modify and load code, I suggest you do not follow this thread as the instructions will mean nothing to you and will cause you lots of frustration.

What is Megapirates NG [MP NG] ?

MP NG is Arducopter firmware ported over to less expensive "Mega" boards based on the Atmel ATMEGA2560 MCU.

Until very recently when Rctimer started selling their ArduFlyer 2.5 which is 100% the same as APM 2.5, APM boards for running ArduCopter had been sold at a inflated price far above what it actually cost to make the board and that is the historical reason for MP NG being developed in the first place.

MP NG has basically the same functionality as Arducopter, each time Arducopter firmware is upgraded a few months later MP NG is also upgraded to keep up to date.

Almost all documentation pertaining to ArduCopter applies to MP NG, things that don't apply - you cannot update firmware from within Mission Planner, to update MP NG firmware you must used Arduino, Mega boards do not have on board logging to flash..

Today if you want a real 100% APM 2.5 at a fairer price than 3DR sell it for, Google RCTimer ArduFlyer V2.5 which is sold as a single board or bundled with the excellent !! CN-06 V2.0 GPS and 3DRadio.

Useful code and documentation links for ArduCopter and MP NG in no particular order of importance, look at all of them.
http://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/ArduCopter2
http://code.google.com/p/megapirateng/
http://code.google.com/p/megapirateng/downloads/list
http://code.google.com/p/megapiraten...ngStarted?tm=6

Back to the topic on hand. Initially there was doubt MP MG would run on this board, I found a few very simple modifications to MegaPirate NG V2.7 R4 code make it run nicely on this board. Full details further down this page



http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...PS_Module.html









Latest batch of GPS shipped by Hobby King appears to be the same GPS as depicted below without the white sticker over the GPS module.




IMPORTANT:You MUST shield the BMP085 barometer from both LIGHT and PROP WASH

Blue arrow pointing to BMP085 barometer


Like all barometers, the one on this board is very sensitive to both LIGHT and Prop Wash. It is much easier to shield the barometer before you install the board. Detailed instructions here http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...&postcount=452

The micro USB connector is fragile, although not as fragile as some but it is fragile so take care. at least this one has solder tabs on both sides as well as on the 2 rear corners, I took the precaution of putting a little bit more solder on those 4 points. Also helps to find a micro USB cable on which the end of the cable that plugs into the board is not a very tight fit, the supplied USB cable is a good fit.



*-- Connecting the Receiver --*
HK Mega is supplied with a cable for connecting the RC receiver that at first seems not to have enough pins, you only need to connect GND and 5V once and then the rest of the single female pins one per channel

The radio connections on Connector J11 headers for MP NG 2.7 R4 are;

Quote:
The inner row of that group of headers [the pins closest to the white writing A8--A15]

A8 = Throttle
A9 = Aileron/Roll
A10 = Elevator/Pitch
A11 = Rudder/Yaw
A12 = Ch5/Radio 5
A13 = Ch6/Radio 6
A14 = Ch7/Radio 7
A15 = Ch8/Radio 8
The outer row [along the outside edge of the board] of that group of headers is GND for the Receiver
The middle row of that group of headers is +5V for the Receiver
Red connects to (+) supplies power to the RX receiver

The cable supplied by HobbyKing is not the best, I suggest you do NOT use it, the cable is too stiff and the female pins are not a tight fit on the headers which means they could very easily come off in flight.

Instead I suggest you order a packet of 10 of these - 10CM Male to Male Servo Lead (JR) 26AWG (10pcs/set) -
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...dProduct=21758



One 3 lead cable cable you connect to A8 on the board, other end of that cable goes to your Receiver Throttle. That cable connects Throttle from your Receiver and also connects GND and 5v to power your Receiver.

The other 3 lead cables you connect in a straight line along the length of the inner side of J1 pins so that;
the first cable connects to A9,
second cable to A10,
third cable to A11
and connect the single cables to your receiver.

If you need to re arrange any cables at your receiver end you can use a sharp knife to lift the plastic tab [gently, don't break it off] on the cable header pull the cable out and swap it to another location.



Check that you have made the correct connections in Mission Planner - Radio Calibration



*-- Connecting ESC --[Powering your HK Mega --*

there is no need to connect GND and 5V for each and every ESC

I know many people use the UBEC in one of the ESC to power the FlightController, this is NOT a good idea. If that one chosen ESC fails then there is no power for your FC and without any control your lovely multicopter is simply going to fall like a brick even if you have 6 or 8 motors and you think there was redundancy.

It is much better to power the FC from a dedicated BEC like this one from HK
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...Reduction.html







The 3A switching UBEC is supplied with a 3 pin plug, notice one slot is not used, you can neatly cut if off to end up with a 2 pin plug.


It is also a good idea to connect this HK capacitor on one of the 5V and GND connections to prevent brownouts, I used double sided tape to hold it in place
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...Protector.html



You can neatly cut off the third unused empty slot on the capacitor connector


Then you have all sorts of choices about where you connect the switching UBEC to power the board and the capacitor to prevent brownouts.
Remember the black lead is always closest to the edge of the board







The ESC wring needs Only to have each ESC Signal wire connected, connecting all or any of the ESC GNDs can lead to electrical noise from ground loops, GND is already connected to the FC via the power supply negative lead, no need to have 4 or 8 copies of it to generate unwanted ground loops.

Real benefits from connecting fewer wires for the receiver and the ESC are;

- Less stiff wires to transfer vibration from the frame to the FC which you mounted on some sort of shock absorption material.

- Less stiff wiring, much easier to connect everything.

- Much neater.

- No ground loops.

I removed all the wires except ESC signal from the connectors wrapped them in tape to insulate them, they do not even enter the FC enclosure.

-- Connecting the GPS --
[
The 2 pink wires are not connected.



GPS cable connects to GND TX2 RX2 5V, RX and TX are crossed
Quote:
BLUE -> GND
GREEN -> TX2
YELLOW -> RX2
BLACK -> 5V
The 2 outside pink wires are NOT used
If your supplied MTK3329 GPS cable has different colors them match these connections to MTK3329 GPS

Quote:
GND -> GND
RXA -> TX2
TXA -> RX2
VDD -> 5V


Don't expect miracles when indoor testing any GPS including the one supplied by HK - take it outdoors.

Indoors or under a roof at the edge of a verandah, it will NOT work properly. it will receive satellites BUT it will only be accurate once you take it outside with a clear view of the sky all around and leave it powered initially for about 45 minutes so that it captures all the relevant satellite data. Then you can start judging how good it is, try a ground plane [Square piece of aluminum or unetched PCB will do fine] under the GPS antenna and see what difference it does make. the optional CN-06 V2.0 GPS does NOT need a Ground Plane.

Indoors you will get a 3D fix BUT it will not be precise it will have an offset in one direction, it may be off by quite a few meters and it will wonder around far more than it will outside, this is perfectly normal.

-- Loading the MP NG Firmware --

Don't skip the next step, I know it seems strange to load Multiwii first when we really want to run MP NG, but this will save you all sorts of GPS headaches.

Code is edited and loaded into your Mega board's ATMEGA2560 using Arduino Software
http://arduino.cc/en/Main/Software

You do need to become familiar with using Arduino, lots of tutorial on the net.

Additional information other than what is discussed in Arduino tutorials relevant to modifying either Multiwii or MP NG code is;

After you have downloaded the relevant code, usually a ZIP file.

You need to copy from the zip file the code sub directory to the place Arduino keeps sketches which on Windows 7 is - Documents - My Documents - Arduino

You also need to copy from the zip file the LIBRARIES to the libraries folder of Arduino, in Windows 7 that is C:\Arduino-1.0.1\Libraries

That information is very standard Arduino stuff covered in Arduino tutorials.but it may not be obvious that you need to do that first.

NOTE: if you wish to update HK Mega firmware using Arduino - you must place the jumper over J1 header, if you have a 3DRadio connected to J2 you must disconnect it

Easiest way to set up the supplied MTK GPS for correct baud rate etc is to first run Multiwii_dev_r1240 which has a routine which tries to guess the current GPS baud rate then sets and stores 115200 along with other settings, to use it edit the source to enable it to AUTOMATICALLY setup the GPS

Download and edit Multiwii_dev_r1240
http://code.google.com/p/multiwii/do...0.zip&can=2&q=

The version of Multiwii dev keeps changing, I originally used r1143, if the link above stops working again, use the link below to find the latest dev_r version of Multiwii.
http://code.google.com/p/multiwii/downloads/list

in Multiwii_dev_r1240 config.h make these settings

Quote:
#define FFIMUv2 // second version of 9DOF+baro board from Jussi, with HMC5883 <- confirmed by Alex

#define GPS_SERIAL 2 // should be 2 for flyduino v2. It's the serial port number on arduino MEGA

#define GPS_BAUD 115200

#define INIT_MTK_GPS // initialize MTK GPS for using selected speed, 5Hz update rate and GGA & RMC sentence
Compile and upload that to the HK Mega board, make sure your GPS is connected so the GPS is in fact setup.

That should take a few seconds, then you can forget about Multiwii


We are not intending to fly using Multiwii nor to do anything further with Multiwii, we are done with Multiwii we will be loading Megapirate NG.



OK, we have set up the GPS, now it is time to load what we will be using MegaPirateNG_2.7_R4 You didn't skip the bit above?

Download and edit MegaPirateNG V2.7 R4
http://code.google.com/p/megapiraten...4.zip&can=1&q=

After you have downloaded MegaPirateNG V2.7 R4

You need to copy from the zip file the code sub directory to the place Arduino keeps sketches which on Windows 7 is - Documents - My Documents - Arduino

You also need to copy from the zip file the LIBRARIES to the libraries folder of Arduino, in Windows 7 that is C:\Arduino-1.0.1\Libraries

That information is very standard Arduino stuff covered in Arduino tutorials.but it may not be obvious that you need to do that first.

in APM_Config.h make these changes

Quote:
// Select your sensor board
#define PIRATES_SENSOR_BOARD PIRATES_FREEIMU


// Select your baro sensor
#define CONFIG_BARO AP_BARO_BMP085_PIRATES

// For BlackVortex, just set PIRATES_SENSOR_BOARD as PIRATES_BLACKVORTEX, GPS will be selected automatically
#define GPS_PROTOCOL GPS_PROTOCOL_NMEA


#define SERIAL0_BAUD 115200 // Console port
#define SERIAL2_BAUD 115200 // GPS port
#define SERIAL3_BAUD 57600 // Telemetry (MAVLINK) port
You also need to select your Frame and Frame Orientation, here I am setting up a hex frame in X orientation

Quote:
//#define FRAME_CONFIG QUAD_FRAME
#define FRAME_CONFIG HEXA_FRAME
/*
QUAD_FRAME
TRI_FRAME
HEXA_FRAME
Y6_FRAME
OCTA_FRAME
OCTA_QUAD_FRAME
HELI_FRAME
*/

#define FRAME_ORIENTATION X_FRAME
/*
PLUS_FRAME
X_FRAME
V_FRAME
*/
AND a last one to correct mag on HK Mega board, I know we should not edit config.h, but this was the easiest way

in config.h make these changes

Quote:
#else
#define CONFIG_IMU_TYPE CONFIG_IMU_PIRATES
//#define MAG_ORIENTATION ROTATION_YAW_180
#define MAG_ORIENTATION ROTATION_YAW_270
#endif
At first it may appear that there is no config.h file to be found. Arduino interface cannot fit all the files in one line. There is a drop down menu at the end of the line. Click on the drop down menu [DOWN ARROW]



And then click on config.h in the list that drops down



Many people have now successfully tested it apart from myself, I have flown the board with MP NG and it works fine as expected.

** -- Motor connections for Megapirates NG --**

Note Octa configuration cannot be used as HK Mega does not have D11 and D12 connected.

Motor numbers, Motor number 2 connects to D2 on the HK board.



Configuration
http://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/AC2_First

First thing you should do is clear the eeprom in the boards Atmega2560 so that you do not encounter strange issues caused by invalid data left behind in the eeprom from previous versions of code.

This will ONLY work using the USB connection, you use Mission Planner to perform this task
http://code.google.com/p/ardupilot-mega/downloads/list

Connect your USB cable but do not click the Connect button on Mission Planner.
If Mission Planner is already connected click on Disconnect
Click on the Terminal tab.
Some text should appear ending with MegaPirateNG V2.7 R4}
Type setup and press Enter, you can type ? to get a list of available commands
Type Erase and press Enter
When the eeprom erase operation is completed click on the Fligh Data Tab, then click on the Connect Tab
Click on the Configuration Tab
Click on Hardware Options
Enable the compass and type in your Magnetic Declination

Be aware that the compass WILL NOT work correctly until you have also clicked on Live Calibration and rotated the board at lest one full revolution on each of the 3 axis. You can do this now to get the compass working, once the board is mounted in your frame you need to do this again properly, see the documentation.
You also need to perform - Radio Calibration and Flight Modes etc, read the documentation
http://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/AC2_First

*-- Warnings --*

Very important, you must reset all Trim and Sub-Trim in your RC Radio transmitter to ZERO - VERY IMPORTANT

You must calibrate each ESC individually EVEN IF you have already previously calibrated them using some other firmware and specially when you switch back and forth between MWii and MPNG as a lot of you seem to be doing. ESC calibration that was done for Multiwii is very likely to not work with MP NG because Multiwii can set lower minimum PWM and if you programmed your ESC to those very low PWM values with Multiwii, your ESC will NOT ARM as MP NG does not put out such low PWM values, Solution is simple, remove the props and re calibrate each ESC individually.

I find that none of the easy ESC calibrations in Mission Planner work correctly for me. Doing it manually one ESC at a time works much better and works every time without a lingering doubt of - did it program correctly -.

This is what I recommend to calibrate ESC.

First reset all trim and sub-trim in your transmitter - all to Zero.

Disconnect Lipo,

Remove all propellers, don't be tempted to leave propellers ON as you WILL regret it when your arm or face is bleeding from multiple deep cuts.

Repeat this for each ESC One at a time
Quote:
Disconnect Lipo from your frame.

Connect your Throttle output from your receiver directly to one ESC.

Switch Transmitter ON, move Throttle lever fully UP.

Connect Lipo - you will hear some loud beeps and one soft beep a few seconds later.

Now lower the throttle lever fully down and you should hear one more beep.

Slowly raise the throttle the motor should start to spin smoothly, raise the throttle to full UP and back DOWN, the motor should run smoothly and only stop when you have the throttle lever all the way down or very very close to fully down.

That ESC is done.

Make sure motor is stopped, throttle all the way down.

Disconnect Lipo

Raise Throttle all the way up ready to program the next ESC and repeat that process for each ESC ONE AT A TIME.
I am using Simonk flashed ESC and I found that I needed to ensure no more than 2000 PWM is output to any motor ESC because if I allow more than 2000 the motor stops.

You can monitor Motor OUT in Mission Planner by clicking on Actions - Raw Sensor View - Radio
Remove propellers, ARM by applying Minimum Throttle and Right YAW for 6 seconds then advancing throttle to maximum and making sure none of the Motor OUT readings go above 2000.

Even after correctly performing Radio Calibration in Mission Planner - Configuration - Radio Calibration, I found when testing before first flight that PITCH needed to be REVERSED on my Transmitter. Make sure Pitch is working correctly before your first flight



*-- PID Tuning --*
It will be a miracle if the default PIDs are correct for your frame and motors. You will have to perform PID tuning.

Easiest way to tune PID is Using CH6 mapped to a dial on your RC Tx

First - go to this page http://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/AC2_Tweaks
Scroll down to Method 2: Flying Attitude Tuning with CH6: learn how to use a dial on CH6 for tuning.

Then - have a look at this excellent tutorial in which the Author forgets to mention that he is using Method 2: Flying Attitude Tuning with CH6:
http://diydrones.com/forum/topics/ar...r-tuning-guide

Seriously, you should wear long welding gloves when tuning this way as it is very easy for the blades to cut your arm while you hold the frame, Eye Protection is also recommended.

--- GPS ---
Using a ground plane with the GPS does help with MTK-3329 GPS, NOT with CN-06 V2.0 GPS which does not need any additional Ground Plane.



This is not the supplied GPS, it is the Crius CN-06 V2.0 I was testing, I discovered later that this GPS in fact works better without any additional ground plane.

Here you see the UBEC which gets power directly from the Lipo and supplies 6V to (+) and (-) connectors on D46 header, alonside you see the 6 single wires which connect to the Signal input on the 6 ESCs which control the 6 motors on my HexX
.

--- You have choices when it comes to a better GPS that will work together with the Mega FC ---

The supplied MTK-3329 works OK, for a little more you can get a much better GPS, which has decent software for changing configuration parameters etc.

I am very impressed with MultiWii APM u-Blox NEO-6M CN-06 GPS Receiver V2.0 $26,99
http://www.rctimer.com/index.php?gOo....x=0&image.y=0.







It does need to be programmed as it comes set to 9600 Baud and 1Hz update.

I used an FTDi cable together with UBLOX u-center software to set it to 115,200 Baud and 5Hz



I have performed a lot of GPS module testing and comparison between the supplied MTK 3329, OpenPilot GPS v8 which uses the NEO-6Q, CRIUS Extend board which uses the LEA-6H and CRIUS CN-06 V2.0 which uses the NEO-6M

My conclusion after a lot of testing is, use the inexpensive [ $29.90 ] CRIUS CN-06 V2.0 which comes with a low noise active antenna, it beats all the other GPS I have compared it to for accuracy, least deviation, quick start up, accuracy straight after start up, satellite acquisition in adverse conditions, the low noise antenna outperformed a much larger passive patch antenna.

NOTE: This GPS does NOT benefit from using a ground plane beneath it. Make sure the antenna is above any transmitters mounted on your frame, for example, mount transmitter antennas on the arms and mount the GPS antenna as high as possible away from any transmitter antenna such as telemetry radio.

ublox provides some real nice software u-centre which if you read the help will allow you to customize a ublox GPS module, very handy bit of software.

If left out in the hot sun the ceramic patch antenna absorbs and retains a LOT of heat from the sun. It will feel much hotter than the surroundings. This is normal, I am going to place a sheet of white paper on the underside of the top surface of my food container above my GPS antenna [plastic or paper does not affect GPS signals] with my name and phone number printed on it in case my HEXX is ever lost and more importantly to keep the GPS and FC cooler shaded from the heat of the sun.

Be aware that the CN-06 V2.0 GPS has an excellent very sensitive antenna design, it is not the usual simple passive antenna and does NOT need improving with additional ground plane modifications. Attaching it to a ground plane which improves reception on MTK 3329 does NOT work with this GPS as it seems to somehow ruin the antenna and makes reception worse.

Unsoldering the antenna and soldering it directly to a ground plane does not ruin reception but it just barely improves it, not worth the effort unless you are really using the ground plane to shield the antenna from noise below it.

CN-06 V2,0 connected to HK Mega board


You can also set the CN-06 V2.0 GPS to use the 3DR APM ublox script. 3DR-ublox.txt sets the ublox NEO-6M on the CRIUS CN-06 V2.0 to output only the more compact UBX protocol at 4Hz update which means the ATMEGA2560 wastes less time parsing the GPS data and can spend more time doing more important tasks like PID more often, also the default Navigation settings are for "Automotive" it changes it to "Flight" for faster response.

Instructions are here, they work exactly the same for CN-06 NOTE: this will NOT work with MTK-3329
http://code.google.com/p/ardupilot/wiki/ublox

In order for MP NG to recognize the 3DR text programmed CN-06 you need to make the following changes to APM_config.h;
set GPS protocol to UBLOX
set GPS baudrate to 38400

Like this

Quote:
// For BlackVortex, just set PIRATES_SENSOR_BOARD as PIRATES_BLACKVORTEX, GPS will be selected automatically
#define GPS_PROTOCOL GPS_PROTOCOL_UBLOX


/*
GPS_PROTOCOL_NONE without GPS
GPS_PROTOCOL_NMEA
GPS_PROTOCOL_SIRF
GPS_PROTOCOL_UBLOX <<< Select this for UBLOX LEA-6 (CRIUS GPS boards and others)
GPS_PROTOCOL_MTK16
GPS_PROTOCOL_BLACKVORTEX
GPS_PROTOCOL_AUTO auto select GPS
*/

#define SERIAL0_BAUD 57600 // Console port
#define SERIAL2_BAUD 38400 // GPS port
#define SERIAL3_BAUD 57600 // Telemetry (MAVLINK) port
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


*-- 3DRadio --*

A lot of people have a real struggle to get their 3DRadio or its equivalent from Rctimer to work

These are the setting I use. In this example 115 means 115,200 baud, like I said you can change this to 57600 if you like.



The important things are the settings, the settings and the settings, it is all about the settings;

Both AIR and GROUND unit settings must be set up exactly the same way.

57600 baud is plenty fast enough for APM Planner to work 100%

Things that will confuse you AFTER you think you have it working ! and suddenly for some strange reason 3DRadio doesn't work anymore.

You bench tested 3DRadio and got it to work.

You then mount the 3DRadio in your frame connect Lipo and plug in USB and 3DRadio doesn't work, in fact the HK Mega doesn't seem to work either, LEDs don't blink correctly.

If you had APM Planner working before and switched off 3DRadio, you FIRST need to make sure APM Planner is DISCONNECTED.

Safest thing to do when nothing seems to work,

1. - switch everything off
2. - shut down Mission Planner on your PC
3. - switch on you HK Mega FIRST
4. - wait until HK Mega boots
5. - Now run Mission Planner
6.. select the correct COM Port and Baud Rate in Mission planner then click Connect.

3DRadio connections to HK Mega board J2 header

3DR -- J2
GND -- GND
5V ----- 5V
TX ---- RX0
RX ---- TX0

NOTE: if you wish to update HK Mega firmware using Arduino - you must place the jumper over J1 header, if you have a 3DRadio connected to J2 you must disconnect it

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Useful code and documentation links for ArduCopter and MP NG in no particular order of importance, look at all of them.
http://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/ArduCopter2
http://code.google.com/p/megapirateng/
http://code.google.com/p/megapirateng/downloads/list
http://code.google.com/p/megapiraten...ngStarted?tm=6

Discussion thread about whitespy board that is similar to HK Mega and which has newer sensors but is missing 3.3V voltage regulator and some headers is here
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1770898

Discussion about CRIUS AIOP is here
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1677726

Discussion about RCTimer ArduFlyer is here
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1752761

enjoy

Joe
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Old Oct 16, 2012, 11:36 AM
we dont NEED roads!
AcroFPV's Avatar
United States, CA, Rocklin
Joined Aug 2012
3,423 Posts
Great information! I have one of these boards on order, and i cannot wait to get my hands on it.

What is that device plugged into your flight controller with the antenna coming out of it?
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Last edited by AcroFPV; Oct 16, 2012 at 12:05 PM.
Old Oct 16, 2012, 12:48 PM
Done Posting, Gone Flying
JNJO's Avatar
Sweden, Uppsala County, Balsta
Joined Jun 2012
1,246 Posts
+1 on a separate thread for MPNG.
I'm toying with getting the MTK GPS to run at 10Hz and/or on the I2C.
Not very successful so far.

/J

Edit: Looks like it was as simple as changing to 10Hz in the MiniGPS tool, and use NMEA in APM_Config
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Old Oct 16, 2012, 07:08 PM
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jabram's Avatar
Australia, NSW, Kendall
Joined Jul 2012
5,476 Posts
@subaru4wd
That is a 3DR Radio Telemetry Kit - 433 Mhz, it works very well.

http://store.diydrones.com/3DR_Radio...try-3dr433.htm



It did take me a while to make it work, not just with the HK board, it is all in the settings, out of the box it does not work well because of the default settings

Nice thing is you can set both modules up from within Mission planner


These are the settings I am using in Australia, you will have to change the frequency range and TX Power to make it legal in your country.


Note: If you are using these modules and find your board will not boot properly or there is a long delay in the motors beeping when you first connect your Lipo battery to your frame then you need to connect the handshaking signals CTS RTS DTR etc.
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Last edited by jabram; Oct 17, 2012 at 12:55 AM.
Old Oct 17, 2012, 02:10 AM
Posting, but should be working
furyphoto's Avatar
Brackendale, BC, Canada
Joined Sep 2006
251 Posts
Awesome start to the thread Joe! Can't wait until my backordered board arrives!
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 02:14 AM
we dont NEED roads!
AcroFPV's Avatar
United States, CA, Rocklin
Joined Aug 2012
3,423 Posts
Me too. I just spoke to someone at HobbyKing and they have no ETA. They say it usually takes 30 days, but she could not tell me how long they have been out of stock.
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 02:21 AM
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This is great info, Thank you Joe.


Subscribed.
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 03:04 AM
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jabram's Avatar
Australia, NSW, Kendall
Joined Jul 2012
5,476 Posts
Thanks guys,

I purchased mine the day it was released then it seemed to very quickly go on Backorder that was around 7 September 2012.so it has been on backorder for quite a while.

I really do like this board, yes it may not have the "best" sensors but it is definitely not a toy.

I have been comparing this board and the CRIUS AIOP V1 with the UBLOX LEA 6H GPS on the extend board that I purchased about the same time.

There is not a lot of difference between them if you only consider the sensors and GPS, which I see a lot of people get quite worked up about.

What is very different is that the HK Mega board is inexpensive and much much easier to work on fitting it in a frame, no fiddly small connectors, all on one board and everything is easy to get to.

I think this is a great board for anyone starting out, has all the bells and whistles once MP NG is loaded and includes a GPS that works well. At the price HK sells it, amazing is the word that comes to mind.
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 04:09 AM
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kinderkram's Avatar
Germany, NRW, Dusseldorf
Joined Jun 2010
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Good job, Joe!
Very detailed and informative build log.
For the money it's an ideal board for beginners to get their feet wet on autonomous flights.
Only little backdraw is the BMP085 which is known to be doubtful for precision alt hold.

Will certainly pull the trigger once they're back in stock - but will try MultiWii first.
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 08:03 AM
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jabram's Avatar
Australia, NSW, Kendall
Joined Jul 2012
5,476 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by kinderkram View Post
Good job, Joe!
Very detailed and informative build log.
For the money it's an ideal board for beginners to get their feet wet on autonomous flights.
Only little backdraw is the BMP085 which is known to be doubtful for precision alt hold.

Will certainly pull the trigger once they're back in stock - but will try MultiWii first.
Thanks Norbert, I suspect you may quickly move to MPNG after your try MultiiWii on this board.

Yes the BMP085 does have that reputation I have feeling that better code to handle the barometer could make a significant improvement.
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 09:04 AM
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RotoGoat's Avatar
Gold Coast, Australia
Joined Nov 2009
143 Posts
Sweet thread, I have been waiting for this.
Subscribed.!!
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 11:21 AM
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TheFernMan's Avatar
United States, FL, Miami
Joined Jul 2012
2,193 Posts
im change the title of the other thread to be MultiWii only type of thread
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 11:34 AM
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JNJO's Avatar
Sweden, Uppsala County, Balsta
Joined Jun 2012
1,246 Posts

Just had a fantastic session in the backyard between the rain showers.
Stabilize mode nicely calibrated. Doing it with the automatic trim option for Ch.7 was a breeze.
Alt.hold bounced up and down +/- 0.5 meters
Loiter kept position within 2 meters, altitude within 0.5 meters.
Jabrams idea with a ground plane under the GPS gives me a constant 10 sats.

As soon as the weather allow (In June, by the looks of it...) I'm going to try a short mission.

Damn, this board is good for it's price.

/J
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Old Oct 17, 2012, 06:41 PM
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jabram's Avatar
Australia, NSW, Kendall
Joined Jul 2012
5,476 Posts
@JNJO

Thanks, that is great news, so you like this board :-)

Weather is not being nice to me here, strong winds, rain, more strong winds, very boring.

Joe
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Last edited by jabram; Oct 17, 2012 at 06:55 PM.
Old Oct 17, 2012, 09:25 PM
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Tim2's Avatar
Devon, Alberta
Joined Apr 2003
200 Posts
Jabram,

Great idea to set up a second thread!

One question, you talk about setting up GPS for 5hz update. I thought the MKT works at 10hz. Does it make a difference?

Thanks ... Tim
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