DJI Phantom vs 3d Robotics IRIS

I have had my DJI Phantom for about 3 weeks now and loved how easy it was to setup and fly. The best part was flying in GPS mode, I could just let go of the sticks and it would hover in place. 

Yesterday I decided to take some go pro pics of the intercoastal waterway and all the fishing boats docked at high noon.

Of course, the first time I fly near any body of water, my Phantom decided to go berserk and landed into the marsh. 

I was able to salvage it and and the go pro, but I'm pretty sure it will never fly again, nor do I want to waste any more time/money with DJI products.

So I have been doing research on the IRIS and wanted to know how it compared to the Phantom, specifically does it have a GPS flight mode where I can let go of the sticks and it hover. I believe Pixhawk has a 'loiter' mode - is that the same thing?

Also, DJI Phantoms are apparently notorious for random fly aways - is there a chance the Pixhawk or IRIS will have the same issues? With the Phantom, you have to be uber careful where you fly and calibrate your compass before every flight...such a pain.  

With the IRIS/Pixhawk, do I have to worry about stuff like that?

Thanks

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Replies

    • That might be true if a Phantom receiver wouldn't bind directly to a Futaba transmitter without modification.  I used to use a T8FGs with my P1, but after migrating my fleet to FrSky, I run an X6R in my P2 for the Taranis.  Not hard to install.   I don't know many people who fly the stock receiver because your programming features are limited.  FWIW, I used to think that it was a toy until I flew one with a different TX, and then wanted one.  My P2 has a H3-3D gimbal for my GoPro B3+, iOSD mini, Immersion 600mw VTX, and a FlyTrex.  And I still get around 11 mins out of the battery with all of that hanging on it.  It's reliable, easy to fly and configure, packs into a reasonably sized case, and has plenty of performance for aerial photography.  Does it look more like a toy than the Iris because it's white :) 

      • @Dan - That's good info, thanks. Too bad they fly away so often. And yes, they look more like a toy because they are white. That's a given. :-)

  • A pixhawk will have the same gps problems that a phantom does at the same location for the same reasons. Im just guessing but i wouldnt be surprised if the phantom also uses a ublox. If power lines or something like that break your gps, both controllers will do crazy things.

    Calibrating your compass before flying is nothing with param checking and test flights after every single firmware upgrade.

    • Moderator

      If you machine is working don't do the fw upgrade. My quad is still flying 2 point something and I'm down with it, I use the latest features for fixed wing and mod accordingly. mP1 is right a rubbish in rubbish out, if you try and fly any GPS when the sats are in a poor position/obstructed then the controller is going to struggle.

  • I've been flying Phantom 1 and 2 for about 18 months a relative newbie.  I also have a X8 3dr.  As much as I am rooting for 3D robotics, DJI is hands down the easier and more stable to fly multi copter.  The Naza M V2 is a beautifully designed IMU half the size of the Pixhawk with much better design and internal dampening.  It supports multiple waypoints. The decisions made by DJI on how to control your flight modes are simple and much easier.  The stock controller very reliable and easy to use. Basically keep it in GPS and it stays where you leave it.  There are rumors about Fly Away with the Naza M but anytime I examined my crashes (yes anybody who says they never crash isn't flying) I find operator error or sometimes interference issues.  I once flew really close to an electrical transformer, the craft dropped like a stone.  I have had harmonic conflicts when using as 1.2 transmitter for FPV with the 2.4 receiver on the Phantom 2 (fixed with the proper pass band filter).  Maybe now that Colin Guin is with 3DR you'll see better support and a redesign.  I want 3DR to build a better machine, I like open source when it is supported.  3DR is still a nerd engineers solution full of esoteric mumbo jumbo like tune your PIDS.  No thanks.

    • They should hired someone fulltime to keep all APM docs current, versioned, with screen shots instead. More people would benefit instead of endless chases and reading of forums, trying to learn about features and so on.

      The documentation might be fine for enthusiasts, but with so many params and changes theres always a few that are not documented, and that doesnt cut it for professional products. A product lives and dies on two things, its performance and its documentation which guides users on how to effectively use that. The combination of new users and safety should make this even a higher priority.

      Like at ms documentation, nothing ships without every new feature at the least mentioned and completely documented.

      • This is noted, and I am currently working on many new graphics for the wiki which should make things clearer. Another thing is keeping screenshots up to date with the software!

        • The first thing that should be done is every page is tagged in the title with the version it applies too. At the least readers will know if its still valid.

          http://copter.ardupilot.com/wiki/arducopter-parameters/

          I know this is generated from the source, but what version of Arducopter is this for ?

          Given the scales of values has changed here there, some of these suggested ranges are of course downright wrong.

          This page should **never** be out of sync with the latest release.

          At the very least there should be multiple versions of this for each and every release, so if people dont want to upgrade their firmware they at the least have a reference to look at. It must really annoy people to suddenly have no doco because they are on an old version.

          http://copter.ardupilot.com/wiki/using-the-command-line-interpreter...

          The console screenshot shows Arducopter v2 beta and we are now 3.2, and the text is probably just as old. A lot has changed, much  has been added from the CLI and removed due to flash space. That means the first page that anybody probably comes to have a look at advanced configuration is completely useless. That just leaves a very bad impression on those many eyes.

          This is probably one of the most important pages in the entire documentation and its over a year old and terribly wrong. A year in Arducopter is an eternity.

          http://copter.ardupilot.com/wiki/arducopter-parameters/

          I dont want to scream at the developers but before releasing new versions the documentation should match. If the doco is not ready then the software doesnt continue to move forward. I could go on and im guessing other pages are just stale.

          Software without documentation (out of sync is even worse) is just bad & unprofessional.

        • Only the graphics.....??

          What about disappearing features and wiki contradictions??  

          Disappearing flight modes

          • Exactly, one has to wonder how many tried and followed the doc and then crashed. I know there are idiots who dont know or even try to read and do the right thing, but when your getting bad advice, that can only make that user unhappy and disappointed.

            One day someones going to get hurt because they followed bad documentation or guessed and bad stuff happened.

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