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Old Sep 07, 2012, 05:13 AM
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Joined Apr 2012
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Radio telemetry system - what does it actually allow me to do

Hi, I've just bought an APM 2.5.

I've read the shop listing about the 3DR Radio Telemetry Kit but it doesn't say what it actually allows me to do?

Is it just see real time flight telemetry data in the Mission Planner?
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Old Sep 07, 2012, 08:21 AM
A man with too many toys
United States
Joined Feb 2001
17,356 Posts
Full feature two-way telemetry like the APM 2.5 has can do everything except flash new firmware. You can change parameters. Program missions. Upload new waypoints while flying.

To take full advantage you need the new 3DR telemetry radio and a laptop computer at the field. It really speeds up PID tuning also. You can also display video as you fly id you have a video down link and a fast enough laptop to handle all the processing.


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Old Sep 07, 2012, 04:46 PM
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Joined Apr 2012
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Wow, thanks. That's pretty cool. I'd better get one then.

(It would be good if the store promoted the benefits, rather than just the technical specs. )
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Old Sep 07, 2012, 05:04 PM
A man with too many toys
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Joined Feb 2001
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There are new features that are added with each new firmware update so it’s a moving target. Also there are differences depending on what you fly, Airplane, Multi-rotor, or conventional helicopter.

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Old Sep 08, 2012, 05:46 PM
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Joined Apr 2012
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Thanks for your help so far. I've done a quick bit of research and found the RFD900 via a thread on this forum. I see you posted there yesterday too.

Do you know is it used in just the same way? Is it able to be setup in the same way, (ie the instructions for 3DR will apply for RFD900) or is it more involved (the fact that the 3DR is sold on the diydrones website implies that it's the preferred option by the APM team).

Obviously the appeal to me is the bigger range. I'm intrigued by the UAV Challenge and would aspire to try that at some stage, I see that the RFD900 would comfortably handle the range (3DR is advertised as 1 mile range).
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Old Sep 09, 2012, 11:07 AM
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Australia, QLD, Brisbane
Joined Nov 2011
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Hi Moglos,
The RFD900's are 100% compatible with the 3DR radios so the setup and configuration is the same. A few people also mix the radios to get overall link improvement, as the RFD900 has an inbuilt LNA (Low noise amplifier) which helps boost weak received signals.

Having a telemetry link, whether 3DR, Xbee, or RFD, is highly recommended.
It is very cool being able to send the plane/quad around the sky, while having a full ground control station showing whats going on.
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