I've recently added a TX and camera to my Arducopter to do some FPV flying.  Just wanted to check in with everyone on the best power configuration.  Is it better to use 1 battery pack and power everything off of that or 2 battery packs one for the Arducopter and one for the FPV system?  Thanks for the help in advance.

Tags: FPV, battery, config

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I use one battery. This 3000mAh 35C Lipo has enough power for copter and video tx.

how many minutes of flight do you get with a 3000mAh 35C?

depending on wind: 20-25min

 

25min hoovering, 20min light flight, 14,5min very, very fast and hard flight

 

I am using Robbe Roxxy 2827-34 motors with APC 10x4.7

I used 2 packs, a small pack ~1000mAh for separate Bec + RX, Video TX + Led, and main pack for motors only

2 packs is more weight, more failure possibilities, more risk to forget to charge a pack, less efficient (you never drain both packs at the same time, mostly video pack is too big) etc.  

The advantages of 2 packs are discutable. 

I'd say, unless you have a good reason for a second pack (like you need some extra weight anyway), avoid it.

with a power copter (my one is hexa - 6x tiger motor MT3506 650KV) the small pack ~80g is not big problem.

But it is safety for flight. 

I used 1000mAh to use with 5-6 rounds with 4s 5000mAh and 4s 8000mAh

I have OSD can monitor 2 voltages at same time

80g extra may not be a problem for a hexa, but it will cut flighttime down a bit.  And I absolutely don't think it is safer.  On the contrary, there is more equipment on board that can fail (connectors, battery not charged, bad soldering, ...)

Two packs for the following reasons:

 

1- No interference between the video system and the APM, since they are on separate circuits.

2- The video system, can run its battery down, and not cause your Arducopter to fall out of the air.  Video is not as critical as flight control and motors.

3- You can get a smaller capacity battery that matches the video system and a higher cap one for the copter.

I'm a long time fpv'er and in fpv forums the pro and cons of 2 batts have been discussed extensively.

 

1) A simple LC filter can do the same for much less weight.

2) Video consumes less then 0.5amp,  while motors consume like 20amp.  Long after your motors have cut off, the video will still function when using only 1 battery.  Video will absolutely not run your battery down and cause a crash, it's consumation is negligable compared to motors.  On the other hand, if your video battery runs out while flying fpv, you're flying blind.  Good luck taking off your fpv goggles and finding your copter somewhere in the air around you.  So nothing but disadvantages with 2 batts.

3)The only valid argument, provided you fly on say 4s and your video needs 3S.  Though you could use a step down convertor.

Two packs means:

 

two batteries to charge

two batteries to connect (+ the weight of two more connectors + weight of cables and battery holder)

then you would need two battery warners.

 

advantage:

-no interference with the APM     ...I've used a single battery for the whole summer with no problems at all...

Same here, single battery all the time.  Motors are connected at main connector, video system connects to balancing plug.

You never get a flat video battery this way.  

 

I guess for a quad, the single battery solution makes sense, since if you run out of either video or power system battery, you're going to loose it.

However for a fixed wing, multiple batteries is a good source of redundancy.  For instance if you used separate batteries for RC receiver, power system, and video it would allow you to glide the craft to safety even if the power system battery ran down during flight.

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