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Feb 20, 2017, 03:01 PM
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OMNIBUS F4 Pro V2 Review

I’ll cut right to the chase. I really like this board. I have a year of experience in FPV, most of which was on a Naze32 rev 6. Well, more like four. That board was adequate, but when something on the chip died and motor 3 and 4 would no longer communicate with the board, it was time for an upgrade. I ordered an OMNIBUS F4 AIO from The Parking Meter and was disappointed to discover it wouldn’t accept Ibus from my original Flysky i6 and IA6C receiver. No big deal, I needed an excuse to jump on the FrSky bandwagon anyway. Alrighty, got one of those, and the wonderful LDO on the F4 AIO board cooked the OSD and VBAT sensor. MyAirBot was gracious enough to send me the wonderful Pro V2 at no charge. Shipping from Germany did take awhile, but I can’t complain for a free board.

The Pro V2 is pretty exceptional as far as features go. It sports an MPU6000 gyro, F405 processor, Barometer, 3 amp 5 volt BEC, current sensor, microSD slot for black box recording, and my favorite bit, a built in OSD configured through Betaflight. I’ll touch on those other features in a bit, but first this OSD.

Oh my god. I love it so much. Not just for keeping my batteries a little bit more happy by landing when they’re done and not just guessing when the pack is low, but tuning. I didn’t know this until I got the board, but with Betaflight enabled OSDs, you can tune and manage other settings in Betaflight right from the OSD. To get into the menu, plug in, put your throttle at 50%, pitch up and yaw left. From here you can use your right stick to navigate the menu. You have access to everything from your tune, to rates, to VTX settings (if you have smart audio enabled on the Tramp or Unify, I don’t so I can’t speak on this feature, but it’s there), to even the layout of the OSD itself. Gone is the necessity of bringing a laptop to the field to figure out your tune. I got my quad locked in on a battery and a half just by fiddling with I and D gains in my driveway.

While the OSD and F4 chip are major selling points of this board, in my opinion, the Pro V2 is not without its quirks and flaws. The barometer is wildly inaccurate. Just sitting on my bench, it has bounced around from 0 feet to 30 feet. Then diving a building that is 370 feet tall, it capped out around 200. Do not rely on the barometer for altitude readings. Next, the current sensor is there, but I can’t imagine how anyone could possibly use it. Looking at the product page on MyAirBot’s site, the BAT+ pad on the board already looks small, but in person, it’s tiny. I intended to use it until I actually received the board, but there is no way in hell I could fit my 12AWG XT60 pigtail on that pad. Then I’d somehow have to run another 12AWG wire from the other side of the resistor to the PDB. That just couldn’t happen in my already cramped build. Interestingly enough, the ground pad on the other side of the board is large enough for a 12 awg wire and so is the MOTO_VCC pad on the other side of the resistor. I believe the BAT+ pad is so small just to accommodate for some of the connectors on the board, but I feel like some of those could have been omitted to fix this terrible design choice. I opted instead to just run some spare ESC signal wire from the PDB to the BAT+ and ground pads and disable all telemetry that would require the current sensor to function. This means I don’t get MAH consumption or to be even more concerned about amp draw on punchouts, but whatever. Voltage reading is good enough for me. Lastly on the flawed features list, the 5v 3a BEC seems to be having issues. Not just on my board, but reading through the RCGroups thread for the Pro V2, other people haven’t actually seen 5v 3a on the ESC 5v rail. I connected my X4R, Unify Pro V2, and HS1177 to this rail and the latter two did not receive enough power. However, the receiver was able to power on. Apparently whatever voltage converter that was powering this rail could not supply enough current to power these three devices. Checking with my multimeter, the X4R was receiving 5v, but every pin after it was sitting around 3v. No big deal, a little more ESC wire from the actual 5v 3a BEC on my PDB to the rail to power these components. This isn’t the biggest deal in my eyes because I was able to ratify it with some redneck modding, but for those that don’t have another source of 5v on their builds, they’re kinda out of luck. Last thing I want to touch on that I thought was a little weird, is flashing firmware. You have to install some weird Zadig driver to get your computer to communicate with the board’s bootloader for flashing firmware. Not that big of a deal, but thought I should mention it for clarity.

That was a lot of ranting on the board’s actually minor flaws. Despite the 450 words I just spent complaining about them, the Pro V2 is still a wonderful board in my opinion. Did I mention it has a FREAKING GOLD PLATED USB PORT??? Straight stylin’. The flaws and quirks I described above do not impact the flight performance of the board what so ever, although for $45 I feel that there should be some better design choices. I don’t think we know who exactly designs and produces this board, but MyAirBot seems to be the most knowledgeable and supportive of the product. A new revision could certainly use less ports on the board to allow for a larger BAT+ pad. Seriously, there are six plastic connectors spread around both sides of the board and I have no clue what any of them do. I’m certain one is a Spektrum Satellite connector, but I don’t know which one that is and the others are just taking up space in my opinion. I’m sure the designers of this board knew it would be for miniquads which are built around the idea of minimalism and fitting as much stuff as possible into as little space as possible. We as miniquad pilots have no use for these six connectors especially when we don’t even know what they are. I can’t find anything on the product page for what they do, as far as I’m concerned, they’re just wasted space. I would much rather have these removed to save weight, space, and cost. Also the LED pin supposedly isn’t wired properly and is actually wired to PWM pin 5 and 6. No big deal for me as I just run single color LEDs, but it’s another weird design mishap that needs revision. Alright, enough complaining. This board is really really good. It’s faults can be looked over simply by how well it does other things. The OSD is incredibly useful and easy to configure, the F4 chip and gyro work flawlessly, and the voltage monitoring is surprisingly accurate. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this board to more experienced pilots that know how to build properly and accommodate for the Pro V2’s pitfalls.

See MyAirBot’s product page and my videos using the Pro V2 in the air.
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