3D Robotics

ArduCopter 2.3 released

Jason is travelling this week, so I'll take the helm for the next software release post. 

UPDATE: the motor remapping thing was confusing everyone, so we took that out and returned to the regular motor mapping. That means that APM 2 users with Hexas and Octos should wait for the next version. APM 1 users should be fine with any frame.  

NOTE: Hexa and Octo users: there have been motor mapping changes that may affect you. Please don't upgrade until we can update the documentation to reflect the changes. This should happen by the end of the day today (Feb 1).

ArduCopter 2.3 is now available in the Mission Planner.  This is the next revision of the ArduCopter 2.2B6 code, which is perhaps the most tested code we've ever released (1288 comments in the thread!)  and certainly in my experience the best code, too. 

The default PIDs are optimized for a 3DR/Jdrones quad with 850 motors and 10" props. If you're using more powerful motors/props, start by turning down Rate Roll P (default is 0.14, so start by turning it down to 0.1. In general tune PIDs in 25% steps).

Now that we've got solid code out there, we can turn to collecting suggested gains for standard frames, and a better guide to how to tune PIDs for your unique setups. 

Here are Jason's note on the latest changes (mostly from 2.2B6)

A dampening term called STAB_D has been refined. A D term for all of the Rate based control loops has been added based on Igor's work. Landing for Baro and Sonar has been refined based on JLN's work. A slightly new approach to Loiter and Navigation is being used to try and linearize the pitch and roll for rate control. It tends to use lower gains, yet has a more assertive response in the air.

STAB_D : This is the gyro accretion dampener. This can remove small wobbles during sharp changes in angle commands. Making this too high can have a negative effect in performance and add a memory effect that can cause temporary loss in control. The in flight tuning is ranged so you are just below that effect.

If you haven't noticed before the control loops are in two stages. The first is a PI stage that converts some sort of position or angle error into a desired rate. These generally do not need to be tuned. They are more of a user preference on how fast you want the copter to perform a motion. 

The second stage is the actual PID loop that needs to be tuned for the copter. This converts the desired rate into a motor command of some sort. I added a D term based on Igor's recommendation to the PI's for each rate controller. These should show up soon in the mission planner for the release. I cannot give you a concrete answer for how to tune the D terms, because they each depend on their function such as alt hold or loiter, etc.

Still, the absolute most important term is always the Rate_P term for each loop. Start tuning here.

The default PIDs are in the what flies great for a stock jDrones/3DR Quad with the purple motors in X mode.

Note the Mission Planner does not yet highlight these D terms on the main tuning page (it will soon), but you can find them and modify them on in the Parameters list.

Autolanding should now work well (see video above) and the Tri servo issue is now resolved. 

The code should now compile with Arduino 1.0 (thank, Randy!), but remember that you need to use the "relaxpatch" version of Arduino in our downloads section

[Update: we've reverted the below. See update at the top of the post]

Important for Octo users:

We've changed some of the motor orders for some more exotic airframes. We'll be updating the docs on the Wiki in a day or two to reflect this. Pat Hickey explains:

As before, the hexa plus APM2 motor setup has changed from the ordering [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6] to [ 5, 6, 1, 2, 3, 4 ].

The Octa V layout for APM2 is:
6            4
  2        5
    8    1
      3 7
Motors 1 through 4 spin clockwise, and 5 through 8 spin counterclockwise.
Support for roll/tilt camera control on APM 2 should be coming in the next version. Traditional Heli will also be updating to this latest code as well once we track down a memory issue. 
As always, you can see a complete list of changes in the changelogs.

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  • Developer

    Please stop to post here about 2.4, use the new thread:


  • I loaded 2.4, using Mr Oborne's very fine MP, onto a 1280 board.

    Less than 10 minutes later, I was flying, in my small living room.

    In "Stabilize" mode, it was , well, stable :-)

    Best I've seen it so far.

    Thank you, Dev Team, and contributors.

  • Developer

    Here is my footage from 2.4. It is an absolute PLEASURE to fly!


  • Hello everybody,
    Haven't had a chance to download yet as i'm still working on my heavy lift hex...what's the word on nav/loiter tuning? Is it the nav parametrs now or still the nav/loiter parameters in combination? I thought Marco's suggestion for a weighted multiplier for the nav vs. loiter vs. stab parameters was going to be implemented in this version. Just curious before i start testing over the weekend
  • Developer


          2.4 release is out in the mission planner.  Click here to go to the....


          Thanks for all the beta testers who put it through it's paces in the lead up to the release!

  • Hey again everyone.

    Quick quesiton, I loaded 2.4 to my big octo yesterday, and the tune function did not work correctly, kept tuning between 0 and 1, not at 4.0 up and down as it should and does with 2.3, I reloaded 2.3 and then noticed the same GPS glitch, when it detects home, get an odd twitch in the air, not cool. I see this is now sorted with 2.4, but again, I use tune 1 for normal flying to tune stabilize for different styles, smooth camera moves, more rigid stab for stills etc.

    Has this been sorted in the final 2,4 in MP ? Anyone else having trouble with tune ? ( I did try upload new firware twice, still had the tune issue)

  • Developer

    ArduCopter V2.4 - Loiter and low passes - Heavy X8 Coax:

    My daily video, with the latest fix of GIT, Loiter mode and low passes at medium speed in Stabilize with my X8.


  • Test 2.4 today.  It seemed very stable with less drift then I am accustomed to.  I have been working on vibration isolation on my APM 2.0, which involves vibration grommets, o-rings, and foam (the whole 9 yards!).

    After my third flight or so, I had an uncommanded roll which caused my quad to land upside down.  I was about 4 ft off the ground, so there was little damage, but it was definitely disconcerting.

    I attached my logs and a jpg of the occurrence3692359797?profile=original.  Any ideas? I am not past thinking it's my hardware, which has survived numerous crashes to this point.  I am working on getting it back up to do some testing.  Such a bummer to be so close and have this crash! It's the nature of the hobby I guess

    2012-02-19 01-06 4.log

  • 2.4 Outdoor Testing


    DJi flamewheel, APM1, standard jdrones 850 ardu kit, 10*4.5 slow fly, xbee connected. Very light wind, I estimate about 8 kph above the trees coming from in front and slightly to the left.


    Params attached
    Testing Stabilised, Alt-Hold (Baro only)


    Strange flip when I first setup, quite elegant though!


    Reconnected the battery and all was fine. Sifting through logs this evening to see if I can find an explanation. GPS bug maybe?!


    Marco: I tried a few hard forward flights, no evidence of the nose rising so far, but may need a longer run.


    Anyway, the video says it all – it’s great on my set up!



    2.4 Outdoors from Kamakaze UK on Vimeo.

    2.4 dji frame, stock ardu..param

  • Hi everybody,


    Small video, test V 2.3.

    Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlhGGahFhM8

    My config:

    Frame: Silver H, from Beedrones, Hexa frame.

    Motor: A2836/9

    Props: 10 x 3.8

    Esc.: Jdrones 30 A, flashed with SimonK firmware

    Mode: Stabilizer


    Battery: 4S, 3000 mHh, 40C

    Weight:  with camera mount plus 1 servo: 1920 gr.

    Wind speed: from 7 to 14 km/hr


    More tests and videos soon.


    Best regards,


    My Land (R. Martins (Portugal))

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