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Old Aug 01, 2012, 12:32 AM
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m_beeson's Avatar
United States, UT
Joined Jan 2011
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Katana LRS and OSD,

it sounds like an interresting project...

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Originally Posted by KatanaGuy View Post
Well, honestly, what influences my decision the most is hackability. Being an EE student, I'm pretty guilty of taking every single electronic thing I've got apart and sniffing the signals that shoot around inside of them with my logic analyzer. I'm interested in seeing exactly what RF modules the various LRS systems use, as in: Are the designers using a custom made RF front end with, like, Skyworks ICs; or are they using a pre-built solution like a Hope RF module? What is the packet format and data rate the designer is using? Do they use forward error correction, and if so, what is the algorithm. Can I flash the microcontroller in there with my own firmware, is the firmware locked down, or can I read it off and reverse-engineer it?

I guess more generally, I'm interested in if I can make my own OSD interface with whatever the LRS system has available. Can you make your own OSD for Dragon Link instead of having to buy the DragonOSD? Which LRS system allows me to extensively modify the firmware, or get lower level access to the system?
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Old Aug 01, 2012, 12:38 AM
Design, Build, and Fly
KatanaGuy's Avatar
Pleasant Grove, Utah
Joined Nov 2001
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Hmmmm, I kind of like the sound of that..... But I already have so much competition with the main three already (Ez, DL and TSLRS), and us engineers like to take the lazy route.
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Old Aug 01, 2012, 12:44 AM
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Pleasant Grove, Utah
Joined Nov 2001
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What does Cliff (Darth Elevator) use?
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Old Aug 01, 2012, 09:05 AM
Keep Calm, and Carry On...
seearestacey's Avatar
United States, UT
Joined Feb 2012
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Here's my .02 cents, for whatever it's worth. Dragon Link has a fiercely loyal following, it seems more so with the V1 than the V2. I have two complete Dragon Link V2 setups and I cannot honestly say that I am happy with them. I've had nothing but problems getting my system up and going, and support has been terrible. Dragon Link does support their product eventually, but the guy has been swamped getting the new V2's out the door, and very slow to respond. Things do seems to be getting a little better though. I'm flying with a Spektrum DX8 and DL claims that is my problem, but they also claim DL is compatible with ALL radios. It appears there may be issues with the PPM out on the DX8. All of my problems seem sporadic, but mostly my servos twitch intermittently, and the receivers won't bind. I have yet to go further out than 5,000 ft as my RSSI drops to 30% I'm also flying with 1.3Ghz video with a Low Pass Filter. I have the problems with my VTx not even turned on. I plan to try using a different radio and/or the Tx filter Beeson suggests, and see how things go from there. Considering my whole experience with DL, I wish I would have went EzUHF, and still may. I'm interested to know what you guys have to say about DL. I know Mike K. flys DL V1 with 2.4 video OK.
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Old Aug 01, 2012, 11:53 AM
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Darth_Elevator's Avatar
The Beautiful Mountains of Utah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KatanaGuy View Post
Well, honestly, what influences my decision the most is hackability.
I don't know about hackability, because I'm mostly clueless about all the EE technical details. But I think there's more public information about DL than the other systems. At least that was my impression two or three years ago when Daniel Wee was developing it. He posted quite a bit of technical information, including, as I recall, improvements he made over TLRS (Daniel designed both systems). I can't find his original development thread so maybe he's taken it down for proprietary reasons, but I'm pretty sure it was here on his blog. I faintly recall some talk about whether it was a custom or pre-built RF front end, but I can't remember which. You might also want to skim the original DL thread on RCGroups for all posts by Daniel -- he often discussed the technical details of DL.

Daniel is very approachable. Even though he is a freaking genius, he is so down-to-earth and helpful that it wouldn't hurt to send him a PM and ask him some of those questions you posted above -- all of which made my eyes glaze over.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KatanaGuy View Post
What does Cliff (Darth Elevator) use?
I use Dragon Link V1 with EagleTree OSD and 2.4Ghz downlink. I've flown lots of times with Nate using EZUHF right next to me and neither of us had any problems from the other person's UHF system.
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Old Aug 01, 2012, 11:48 PM
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I was having RSSI issues a while back, and I tightened/ snugged the filter connection with a wrench. then I made sure that my whip was very tight, and that resolved it. I figure it was just shy of making a good connection.

be careful though, you don't want to crank it and break the connection from the board, or strip the threads. just snug it real good and try that...

Quote:
Originally Posted by seearestacey View Post
Here's my .02 cents, for whatever it's worth. Dragon Link has a fiercely loyal following, it seems more so with the V1 than the V2. I have two complete Dragon Link V2 setups and I cannot honestly say that I am happy with them. I've had nothing but problems getting my system up and going, and support has been terrible. Dragon Link does support their product eventually, but the guy has been swamped getting the new V2's out the door, and very slow to respond. Things do seems to be getting a little better though. I'm flying with a Spektrum DX8 and DL claims that is my problem, but they also claim DL is compatible with ALL radios. It appears there may be issues with the PPM out on the DX8. All of my problems seem sporadic, but mostly my servos twitch intermittently, and the receivers won't bind. I have yet to go further out than 5,000 ft as my RSSI drops to 30% I'm also flying with 1.3Ghz video with a Low Pass Filter. I have the problems with my VTx not even turned on. I plan to try using a different radio and/or the Tx filter Beeson suggests, and see how things go from there. Considering my whole experience with DL, I wish I would have went EzUHF, and still may. I'm interested to know what you guys have to say about DL. I know Mike K. flys DL V1 with 2.4 video OK.
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Old Aug 01, 2012, 11:51 PM
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Pleasant Grove, Utah
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"some of those questions you posted above -- all of which made my eyes glaze over"

Yeah, I suppose I'm asking some pretty odd questions for the scope of this groups experience, but I figured I'd try anyway. Continuing on the nerd side of the discussion: I found out a few details about the TSLRS system, based on photos of the transmitter module circuit board. For those who are curious, it uses this Transceiver:
http://www.digikey.com/product-detai...68-1-ND/966340
and this Amplifier:
http://www.digikey.com/product-detai...2-1-ND/2052204

These two RF chips, intermediate matching circuitry, the microcontroller, power supply, and other parts probably all add up to $85. I guess they have to mark up the prices about 2.5x the cost to build in order to make a profit?

Anyhow, I would love to find pictures of the DL and EzUHF circuit boards to compare amplifiers and transceivers. seearestacey: I wonder if the issue that you are talking about can be narrowed down to the components used, or if it is software related. Whatever it is, if you don't want your DL any more, can I have it?

-Steve
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Old Aug 02, 2012, 05:37 AM
Crash....Fix......repeat.
kokopropelli's Avatar
United States, UT, Eagle Mountain
Joined Jan 2012
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I wonder how well this would work in good ole Utah terrain? A little pricey...

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1703219
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Old Aug 02, 2012, 07:28 AM
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seearestacey's Avatar
United States, UT
Joined Feb 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m_beeson View Post
I was having RSSI issues a while back, and I tightened/ snugged the filter connection with a wrench. then I made sure that my whip was very tight, and that resolved it. I figure it was just shy of making a good connection.

be careful though, you don't want to crank it and break the connection from the board, or strip the threads. just snug it real good and try that...
Thanks Mike. I'll give that a try... BTW can you post a link to that filter that goes on the Dragon Link Tx? I think it was at Digikey. Thanks again.
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Old Aug 02, 2012, 01:21 PM
Mountain? What mount..CRASH!!
cardo's Avatar
United States, UT
Joined Feb 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KatanaGuy View Post
"some of those questions you posted above -- all of which made my eyes glaze over"

Yeah, I suppose I'm asking some pretty odd questions for the scope of this groups experience, but I figured I'd try anyway. Continuing on the nerd side of the discussion: I found out a few details about the TSLRS system, based on photos of the transmitter module circuit board. For those who are curious, it uses this Transceiver:
http://www.digikey.com/product-detai...68-1-ND/966340
and this Amplifier:
http://www.digikey.com/product-detai...2-1-ND/2052204

These two RF chips, intermediate matching circuitry, the microcontroller, power supply, and other parts probably all add up to $85. I guess they have to mark up the prices about 2.5x the cost to build in order to make a profit?

Anyhow, I would love to find pictures of the DL and EzUHF circuit boards to compare amplifiers and transceivers. seearestacey: I wonder if the issue that you are talking about can be narrowed down to the components used, or if it is software related. Whatever it is, if you don't want your DL any more, can I have it?

-Steve
I have a Chainlink UHF and Dragon link. The dragon link has worked great so far. As for the Chainlink....It did work great. But I might have burnt out the finals on the TX when I was delirious during a recovery hike and turned it on without an antenna. (ever sense then it has had a severely crippled range). If you want to take a look at it your more than welcome to. :-] I'm not using it right now.
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Old Aug 02, 2012, 04:51 PM
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United States, UT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seearestacey View Post
Thanks Mike. I'll give that a try... BTW can you post a link to that filter that goes on the Dragon Link Tx? I think it was at Digikey. Thanks again.
Here is the one that I use on the LRS Tx.

http://www.digikey.com/product-detai...362-ND/2339514
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Old Aug 03, 2012, 04:41 PM
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The Beautiful Mountains of Utah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cardo View Post
I have a Chainlink UHF and Dragon link.
How much does Chainlink cost?
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Old Aug 03, 2012, 08:38 PM
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United States, UT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth_Elevator View Post
How much does Chainlink cost?
chainlink is outdated, it is not available, but I will give you a little insight.


Sid designed chainlink, and sold them from BevRc. He wasn't happy with that relationship, and the lack of customer service, so he split from them.

In the mean time, sid redesigned his system and came out with RangeLink (which is now available).

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bev copied chainlink and came out with chainlink dare which is merely a nockoff, and for all purposes unsupported.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

You can purchase chainlink recievers from sid, as part of his personal desire to service his products, but not the transmitters.


Sometimes you can get a used chainlink, but the Reciever has to have the updated firmware. If it doesn't, then it has failsafe issues. That can be flashed from your own computer.


Here's the rangelink thread
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...ight=rangelink
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Old Aug 06, 2012, 01:48 AM
Keep Calm, and Carry On...
seearestacey's Avatar
United States, UT
Joined Feb 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m_beeson View Post
Here is the one that I use on the LRS Tx.

http://www.digikey.com/product-detai...362-ND/2339514
Mike, I assume this would work on a Dragon Link Tx as well? I'm using 1,280Mhz video (Lawmate 1W). My range is not very good and I'm thinking the DL is interfering.
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Old Aug 06, 2012, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seearestacey View Post
Mike, I assume this would work on a Dragon Link Tx as well? I'm using 1,280Mhz video (Lawmate 1W). My range is not very good and I'm thinking the DL is interfering.
That is a strong posibility.

Bruce had to stand about 20 feet (or so) back from my ground station so that DL wouldn't kill the video.

That filter would work for your DL.
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