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Old Jan 09, 2014, 11:10 PM
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United States, CO, Broomfield
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350 QX and GPS lock issues when using GoPro

This thread is dedicated for all discussion around the 350 QX losing GPS lock when using the GoPro and any other device.

Please post all opinions, fixes, and anything else around this topic in this thread.

To the people who are new to the 350 QX please be aware that some people have reported that when a GoPro camera is used then the GPS may stop working.

If you are flying in "SAFE MODE" you will lose stick relativity, safe circle, position hold, and return to home functionality.

Some people have reported that wrapping the GoPro in a copper foils eliminates or greatly reduces this problem.

Other solutions have also been proposed and these are in the huge 350 QX thread (http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1953854

Unfortunately, or fortunately, that thread is HUGE and it may take you a while to find all the discussions around this topic.

That is why this thread was started.
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Old Jan 09, 2014, 11:49 PM
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I have a 350QX and a GoPro Hero 2.

I had no issues using the GoPro in 720 Video mode but when switching to 1080 mode it caused interference to the GPS.

I finally solved the problem by wrapping my GoPro in copper foil - this seems to be a very effective fix.

Before and after videos.

GoPro 1080 medium vs GPS reception (1 min 18 sec)


GoPro covered in copper foil - totally eliminates GPS interference. (2 min 9 sec)
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 02:43 AM
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Aluminum foil will work also right? Since I have some in the cabinet right now...
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 03:10 AM
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Hi All.

I have MAJOR issues with the 350QX and Hero3+ - purchased together, with the intention of having a fairly decent aerial video platform. To my utter dismay the Hero3+ (without shielding) makes the 350QX absolutely uncontrollable and I caution anybody attempting to launch the 350 without adequate shielding.

Whilst Blade has posted a bulletin regarding the 2.4GHz Wi-Fi streaming issues, I still see no mention of the more serious general GoPro issue! i.e. even with Wi-Fi off the 350 cannot fly with the Hero3+ once it is switched on

Maybe it is a GoPro issue but Blade should have taken the time to state exactly which cameras the 350 had been successfully tested with before stating that the 350 is "GoPro" compatible.

All feedback is appreciated!
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 06:40 AM
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Originally Posted by code66 View Post
Aluminum foil will work also right? Since I have some in the cabinet right now...
My Mobius cam is a huge radiator. I tried 1 mm thick copper: worked!

I tried 2 layers of "household" aluminium foil: worked. Just 1 layer seemed slightly worse.
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Muzzburger View Post
Hi All.

I have MAJOR issues with the 350QX and Hero3+ - purchased together, with the intention of having a fairly decent aerial video platform. To my utter dismay the Hero3+ (without shielding) makes the 350QX absolutely uncontrollable and I caution anybody attempting to launch the 350 without adequate shielding.

Whilst Blade has posted a bulletin regarding the 2.4GHz Wi-Fi streaming issues, I still see no mention of the more serious general GoPro issue! i.e. even with Wi-Fi off the 350 cannot fly with the Hero3+ once it is switched on

Maybe it is a GoPro issue but Blade should have taken the time to state exactly which cameras the 350 had been successfully tested with before stating that the 350 is "GoPro" compatible.

All feedback is appreciated!
There are even "some" GoPros which worked with the 350 (using GPS) without problems. I was not able to recognize a pattern. Seems kinda random to me.

If you want to fly - and not pick on specifications or call for a lawyer - then there are two possibilities:

1. Cover your camera
2. Switch off GPS (binding in non-GPS-mode)

Even though I successfully shielded my cam I will switch off GPS now for the most of my video flights. This is due to the physical nature of GPS - not due to some flaws in the 350s GPS. In fact I wonder how well the software of the 350 is dealing with such a biest called GPS.
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 07:35 AM
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I flew for 5 packs on Wednesday at our club's indoor practice building (basketball court) with the GPS disabled. That's the first time I ever flew it this way and it worked great indoors. I was able to have 'normal' pitch/roll stick control with the pressure altimeter enabled to give me nice, stable video shots.

Here's the video after editing out the boring stuff:
Norton Indoor 1 8 13 (8 min 49 sec)


If I'd been outside I would have preferred to use the GPS to hold position but I wish the programming allowed you to have 'normal' stick control while keeping altitude-hold via the pressure sensor.

I used the template found at Hoverthings to make an aluminum foil duct tape-lined box for the GoPro Hero3+ (Silver) and added conductive adhesive copper tape to the seams to make a continuous shield around all edges except the rear-bottom and rear-sides. I left the 'tabs' a little long on these 3 corners so their overlap would help keep the RF bottled up inside. I'll let you know how it works out as far as GPS lock goes. I'll tell you this - it almost totally stopped the WiFi from working. I had to be like 6 inches from the camera to use WiFi on my phone to set up the GoPro. Of course I turned it off before flight...

Ideally, I'd really like to use all copper foil for the box instead of a mix of aluminum duct-tape and copper tape.

Bob
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 08:25 AM
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You can find adhesive backed copper foil a couple of places.

Music stores that work with electric guitars will have sheets or rolls used for shielding the components of the guitars. You can find this on Amazon, or look online for luthiers as well.

Home stores (like Lowes or Home Depot) sometimes sell a narrow copper tape intended to keep slugs and snails out of flowerpots. Look in the garden area or ask for slug tape.

Another option is stained glass suppliers. You can get narrow tape (up to 1/2" wide) and sheets. Here's an example:
http://www.delphiglass.com/copper-fo...-12-x-1-25-mil

I've had success with the music shop sheet foil using the pattern mentioned from hovership.com and stuck the copper to the paper pattern so I wasn't sticking the copper directly to the camera for easy removal.

Kevin
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 08:46 AM
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The point is that it needs to have conductive adhesive, not regular adhesive. Where the edges of the folded panels meet, they need to make a secure, low resistance, conductive bond to keep RF bottled up inside. I haven't had any luck finding stuff wider than 1.5 inches so far.

We used to buy it in sheets for RF shielding when I did FCC testing at Data General in the 80's but can't find it now...

Bob
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 01:43 PM
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I figure the people that did not want to wade thru 11,000 plus posts asking about this is, ok even if it is repetitive.
Now they can be directed to the most informative posts by those that seem to have all the links saved and have a problem with people that don't know everything.

So now we will have this thread to refer people to.

This is my version of this and findings.
So if you don't want to read all this, don't, lol
I wanted to go into detail and will update this when I can. I wanted it to be like a discussion for those that really wanted the details.
Started raining while I was testing.

I had a GPB3 before I was on this forum. I did not know any better at the time and used wifi and my iphone and ipad and was having fun!
I never had any problems that I could attribute to doing that.

I wanted the added features of the GPB3+
I have been shooting at 2.7K resolution with very high quality and sharpness.

I have been working on shielding since I bought my GPB3+.
I don't blame either Blade or GoPro I just want to use the two.

I got in some items I had been trying to find. I have always been uncomfortable using the camera without a case in my gimbal.

The carbon fiber one I found at one time was no longer available when I decided to try it. I was hoping for protection and maybe some shielding plus adding more.

I found a cage of sorts that turned out, with the poor instructions, was difficult to assemble and thought it would be a hassle to keep it together changing out the camera.

I ordered a cage from the same people that said it was for the GP 1 & 2 but thought I might mod that.

Turns out that is what I did and used the back plate from the other kit.

The difference in cameras that needs to be fixed is apparently the placement of the lens.
I had to dremel out the lens port towards the top of the cage.

I hope to hear back from them about making one for the GP3 and + like the old design with some changes.

This was 3D printed and adds some protection for the lens and body of the camera plus providing a ridgid frame to apply the copper foil to.
I tried the tin foil but from what I understand the copper helps shield from RF plus EMI.
I got mine here
http://www.amazon.com/DiMarzio-Coppe...m_cr_pr_sims_t

Local guitar shop was interested in my use for the foil. They advised that for their use they recommend soldering a ground between any seams.
I am hoping overlapping with several layers will be sufficient.

I don't know if the adhesive is conductive or not.

My first test was in a worst case location with houses and trees.
However this was good for the test to see if weak signals were knocked out.

(I live in a rural area, on a corner lot and one neighbor across the street is an RC nut (works at the LHS) and the others are like family and no one is outside during the day near where I am flying.) Just for those that are coach potatoes and like to get on the stump.

Heavy overcast and rain. GPS, PN40 I was using got several satellites but not strong signals. Probably why I am having issues here at the house.
Anyway camera in case covered in foil, one layer did not seem to affect the signals significantly. Things vary so I want to do some more tests when the weather permits.
I left the GPS outside for a longer time in a different location and it got full satellite coverage and all were green. I will put the camera next to it again in that location when I can.
I had copper foil left over so I applied a second layer.

There was one weak satellite that turned red but that could have been a variable.
I want to try it with them all green to start with.

Stay tuned and I will update this shortly.
1 piece case and plate on left is .8oz. Those other parts are the kit for the GP3 I used the back plate out of.





Break in the weather, sort of so I moved to where my heli-pad is and set things up.
This of course is not conclusive and I did have some signal variables even without the GP next to it.
Looks like I'm ready to run down some LiPo's!!



Interesting to note that there were actually more satellites with the camera next to the GPS?
Might have been acting as an antenna? Ground plane?

Update
I have a 3d printed GPB3 or 3+ cage coming instead of the one I had to mod. I will post my findings and where to get one if anyone is interested after I see what I get.
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Hunner View Post
I tried the tin foil but from what I understand the copper helps shield from RF plus EMI.

Local guitar shop was interested in my use for the foil. They advised that for their use they recommend soldering a ground between any seams.
I am hoping overlapping with several layers will be sufficient.
I tried Aluminium Foil and it made no apparent difference.

The Copper foil works superbly. I used this tape

http://www.easypestsupplies.com.au/s...slug-tape.html

You can apply it just like sticky tape (or masking tape) and cut it to different widths and lengths.

My GoPro has 4 layers and this has stopped all interference.

I found 1 layer stopped 50% of the interference,
2 layers stopped 80%.
4 layers stops 100% of the interference. The GoPro is now totally invisible to the GPS.

You can trim this copper tape easily with an exacto knife, so I just covered mine completed on all sides leaving only the lens exposed. Then I used the exacto knife to cut holes for the buttons, USB port, front LED (so I know when it is charging) and the display window.

I am extremely happy with this result and it still fits in the protective case and actually looks cool.

I have also been advised that Testors Copper Metallic paint can have the same result. Painting the inside of the GoPro plastic protective case would look great also and probably work.

Using Testors Metallic model paint to shield my Blade 350QX GPS receiver from RFI (1 min 25 sec)


Great video ST_Bob, looks like a good place to fly.
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Old Jan 10, 2014, 11:11 PM
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My experience with GoPro3Black:
Binding would not take place with GP in record mode
1- Changed to GP approved SD card (minor improvement)
2- Bind did complete using Wireless iphone app, but there was some erratic flight behavior. So I stopped using wifi due to HH warnings.
3- Created a double layer 3-sided box of aluminum HVAC foil tape that fits in the original GP case. This seems to create reliable bind and flight characteristics.
4- I have experienced erratic flight behavior and a crash flying near homes with strong wifi routers and new power lines. Some will argue if this is possible, while others will admit the problems of flying 2.4Ghz noise saturated urban areas. All I can say is the 350 demonstrates reliable, repeatable performance when I fly it in large open areas away from likely sources of interference.
YMMV
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Old Jan 11, 2014, 12:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Rob2160 View Post
I tried Aluminium Foil and it made no apparent difference.

The Copper foil works superbly. I used this tape

http://www.easypestsupplies.com.au/s...slug-tape.html

You can apply it just like sticky tape (or masking tape) and cut it to different widths and lengths.

My GoPro has 4 layers and this has stopped all interference.

I found 1 layer stopped 50% of the interference,
2 layers stopped 80%.
4 layers stops 100% of the interference. The GoPro is now totally invisible to the GPS.

You can trim this copper tape easily with an exacto knife, so I just covered mine completed on all sides leaving only the lens exposed. Then I used the exacto knife to cut holes for the buttons, USB port, front LED (so I know when it is charging) and the display window.

I am extremely happy with this result and it still fits in the protective case and actually looks cool.

I have also been advised that Testors Copper Metallic paint can have the same result. Painting the inside of the GoPro plastic protective case would look great also and probably work.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GyGf2hvqBC8

Great video ST_Bob, looks like a good place to fly.
Do you think that painting the inside of the case with that metallic copper might hurt reception of the 350 qx (from the transmitter)?
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Old Jan 11, 2014, 08:51 AM
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Originally Posted by VintageSlots View Post
Do you think that painting the inside of the case with that metallic copper might hurt reception of the 350 qx (from the transmitter)?
I guess it could if you paint inside the frame of the 350QX like in the video. . I was suggesting painting inside the frame of the plastic protective case for the GoPro, not inside the 350QX.
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Old Jan 14, 2014, 07:14 PM
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First, thanks for starting this thread. The other thread was getting pretty darned annoyed at this segment of the discussion.

I recently bought a 350QX and a Hero 3+ (a pretty substantial investment on my budget) and was pretty upset to run into these problems.

I'm currently taping copper slug barrier all over my brand new GoPro. It kind of goes against my hard-won instincts to coat a flying machine with a bunch of stuff that actually blocks transmissions.
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