Explain the flight modes

I have found links on wiki and other sites partially describing the differing modes but they are quite cryiptic, can someone explain what each does.

There is as follows

Acro ? (i am unsure, need detail)

Alt hold (stabilize but holds alt)

Auto (flight path pre programmed)

Circle ?

Guided ?

Land (doesn't seem to work)

loiter  (holds position but not alt)


Pos hold (gps hold and alt hold)

RTL (Return to arm point)

Stabilize (board keeps the copter steady and adjusts for strong winds etc but can drift)

Toy ?

You need to be a member of diydrones to add comments!

Join diydrones

Email me when people reply –


  • need to know what toy and guided are people?

  • Guided is when you point & right click on the map in mission planner and instruct it to 'fly to here'  as well as the 'follow me' mode.

    Stabilize in for airplanes,  ACM is always using stabilize or else it would be uncontrollable.

  • LAND shoud slowly decrease altitude with constant rate and when real verical speed became zero (ground reached) - disarm motors. For me it works nice (on ArduCopter 2.9). Which firmware version do you use?

    OF_LOITER is Loiter using Optical Flow sensor (http://code.google.com/p/arducopter/wiki/AC2_OptFlow), it's much more stable and preceise than Loiter on small altitudes.

    The best (but not simple) way to find out what exactly each mode does - is read the code :)

  • T3
    I'm no expert, but I can answer some of your questions. Acro is short for acrobatic flight. You have full control of flight. Not for a beginner, you have to adjust everything just to maintain level flight. Circle is used mostly by planes, and as the name implies the plane will circle a point in the sky and maintain altitude. Loiter should hold position and altitude. With Loiter and Alt Hold you can change Alt Hold and Loiter with the controls and move to a new position or altitude. It takes more stick action to make the change. If you change altitude with the throttle make sure you place it back where it started from. Fail to do this will result in either your copter going like a rocket or rock. Be careful. I would curious to find out what the other ones are. Guided? Toy? Isn't that what I'm flying. LOL.
This reply was deleted.


Neville Rodrigues liked Neville Rodrigues's profile
Jun 30
Santiago Perez liked Santiago Perez's profile
Jun 21