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Old May 20, 2008, 04:52 AM
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Old Man Mike's Avatar
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High Def Video with Quad Copter FPV portable system

Here is a video composite taken with my portable Quad Copter FPV system using an HD FX-35 camera and flying FPV via the KX-171 camera:

http://www.af9y.com/HDfpvDemo.wmv
(Vimeo, even in HD, is not good enough to show the full quality so I've made this direct link)

If you can't do the download above, here is the lower quality Vimeo link:

FPV Quad Copter with HD FX-35 Video (2 min 7 sec)


A few notes about the video

- Starts with a close up of me flying FPV

- Moving up showing my Ham Radio tower

- Flying in a valley 1/2 mile away (look closely and you'll see a deer running toward the lower left corner)

- Found someone picking up Rocks in the field. He waves at the quad copter and I wave my "wings" back at him.
(A large row of trees made this non line of sight - no problems with either the FASST 2.4 Ghz R/C or 900 Mhz Video at near ground level 1/2 mile distance)

- Moving up to 500 foot altitude for the parting shot

Finally, this is the portable Quad Copter FPV system:









Mike
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Last edited by Old Man Mike; May 21, 2008 at 04:03 PM.
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Old May 20, 2008, 05:38 AM
Cameras are EVERYWHERE...
tvdude310's Avatar
Los Angeles
Joined Jan 2008
1,879 Posts
Nice rig Mike!

I've been toying with cameras on microhelis, but your setup is fantastic! I'm thinking of doing something similar with a fixed-wing plane and an Aiptek A-HD+ (1080p) camcorder.
The video is outstanding. Interesting choice with the Quadracopter. All your gear is in the middle, out of the way of the blades and right on the CG. How does that thing yaw?
Great job, and nice tower too!
Rob
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Old May 20, 2008, 05:45 AM
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Netherlands, NH, Edam
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Cheers Mike,

I recently bolted my Canon HV20 HDV camcorder to a extensively modified EZ. Due to a severe case of dumb thumbs, I flipped the airbrake switch when I picked up my goggles from the suitcase with the planes just 100-feet up in the air. I managed to only record about 3-mins of footage with it though. Most of which is ducking cows. I snapped off the tail section and the elevator trying to get it out of the dive initiated by the airbrake. That also ripped off the antenna and made the Rx go into failsafe so I lost control seconds later

Cheers,

Sander.
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Old May 20, 2008, 07:41 AM
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Hi Mike,
Great video system! This is really something, I thought the KQuad was terrific. I quess it was only part of what you had in mind. I think that that has been the best ezone thread I have followed. Thanks for all the great ideas. I almost have my Octo ready again, I did the pot mods. Rich
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Old May 20, 2008, 08:51 AM
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Netherlands, NH, Edam
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Mike,

Question about the FX-35 camera, does it have an AV-output that has a AV signal on it when you're recording in video mode? And if so, is that output void of any info such as remaining storage memory, battery indicator etc?

Cheers,

Sander.
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Old May 20, 2008, 09:30 AM
13brv3's Avatar
Navarre, FL
Joined Mar 2002
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Outstanding as always Mike! I guess I'm going to have to give you some FPV competition. Beware "The Box"

Rusty (more to follow)
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Old May 20, 2008, 09:54 AM
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how do you switch cameras and what's AUW ?
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Old May 20, 2008, 01:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tvdude310
Nice rig Mike!
I've been toying with cameras on microhelis, but your setup is fantastic!
..... How does that thing yaw?
Rob
Thanks Rob. A quad has Front/Rear props that rotate in the opposite direction as the Left/Right props. Yaw is achieved by increasing the speed of one set while decreasing the speed of the other set. The quad will then yaw to conserve angular momentum.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssassen
Question about the FX-35 camera, does it have an AV-output that has a AV signal on it when you're recording in video mode? And if so, is that output void of any info such as remaining storage memory, battery indicator etc?
Sander.
Yes, the FX-35 camera has an AV output while recording and I have flown FPV using that output instead of the KX-171. You can set camera so that no camera info shows.

The FX-35 works very well in SD as an FPV camera but the HD mode will show as a smaller display (like an HD signal shows on a standard TV) so it is not as good for FPV. The SD mode of the FX-35 is much higher quality than the KX-171 but the field of view is less. For now, I just fly with both cameras and use the KX-171 for FPV.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fmkit
how do you switch cameras and what's AUW ?
Hi Peter,
Currently I am not switching the cameras in flight but I already have the Maxim 4310 part which will allow me to design a circuit that will switch between the two videos via an R/C channel. What do you mean "AUW"? (did you receive my last PM?)

Richgraf: Thanks for the nice comments

Van Man Rusty: Bring it on, flyboy

Mike
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Old May 20, 2008, 01:33 PM
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Thanks Mike,

Odd question, but you don't have any footage from the FX-35 SD and HD output from the AV connector to compare do you? I'd hate to spend $250 on a camera only to return it a few days later.

As for AUW, that's an acronym for All Up Weight, basically the take off weight of whatever you're trying to get airborne

Cheers,

Sander.
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Old May 20, 2008, 03:56 PM
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Michigan
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Really outstanding, Mike.
I even like the idea of using the foam pool noodles for gear.
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Old May 20, 2008, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fmkit
... what's AUW ?
All Up Weight (thanks Sander for reminding me what AUW stood for) is 45 oz and consists of the following:

Basic Quad = 23 oz

3200 mAh Battery = 9.5 oz

Payload = 12.5 oz
(FX-35 & Foam Mount, GPS & OSD, KX-171 & Microphone, 500 mw 900 Mhz Video Transmitter & Antenna, Battery Status display)

Flying time for above was 13 Minutes.

Here is a chart showing other configurations and the expected flying time for different payload weights:




(Sanders, I'll make some SD and HD recordings with the A/V outputs going thru the OSD to the TX and post the results from the RX output)
Mike
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Old May 23, 2008, 05:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssassen
Thanks Mike,

Odd question, but you don't have any footage from the FX-35 SD and HD output from the AV connector to compare do you? I'd hate to spend $250 on a camera only to return it a few days later. ....

Sander.
Sander,

I finally had time to do a recording to show you the SD and HD output from the AV connector as it looks when transmitted via the FPV OSD system:

http://www.af9y.com/FX35inTX.wmv

You can see that the FX-35 display shows only the Recording indicator in the AV output going to the transmitter. The first half of this video is in SD and you can see a full screen. The second half of the video is in HD where the wide screen is reduced to fit inside the SD window. I think the IF OSD info could be moved so that it show in the black areas of the display which would make the HD mode not so bad for FPV.

Finally, here is what the HD recording looked like from the camera memory during the last half of the demo video above:

http://www.af9y.com/FX35HDrecord.wmv

Some day we may reasonably priced off the shelf transmitters for full HD but it will require much more power to achieve the same range as SD.

Mike
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Old May 23, 2008, 06:16 AM
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Thanks Mike,

Very much appreciated! I'm putting an order in for that camera today

Cheers,

Sander.
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Old May 23, 2008, 11:27 AM
Knight of Ni-wom
Victorville, CA
Joined Mar 2003
179 Posts
Mike, that is quite the cool setup! How big of an SD card are you using in the FX35 and what kind of video length can you expect from that while recording in 720p?

Thanks,
Loren
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Old May 23, 2008, 02:37 PM
Cameras are EVERYWHERE...
tvdude310's Avatar
Los Angeles
Joined Jan 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Man Mike
Some day we may reasonably priced off the shelf transmitters for full HD but it will require much more power to achieve the same range as SD.

Mike

...and 4 times the bandwidth...
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