Fpv gear for Arducopter 2014

What are the best types of fpv cameras that can record video.should i get the goggles or monitor, what is the most cost effective? What are the best types of cameras to get that can record video, has to be compatible with Arducopter 2014 DIY kit, I don't have the 3DR radio telemetry if that's an issue, what am I looking at spending where I can get the best bang for my buck?I have a Pixhawk, and I want to get into 3D mapping and modelling!

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  • Generally speaking, most FPV pilots employ two cameras.  The first is often a gimbal-mounted action cam (i.e. GoPro) that is positioned beneath the multicopter platform.  This camera is used to record high-definition aerial footage that you can edit as you please for whatever purposes (i.e. geo mapping).  The second camera is a smaller (typically CMOS or CCD) FPV camera that is positioned forward of the craft.  Some users prefer this camera to be maneuverable via RC so they employ a 2/3-directional servo mount.  Then of course you have all the peripherals than can be wired in series with the FPV cam and the AV transmitter on the craft, which include your OSDminim or what have you.  It is important to position the AV transmitter as far as possible from the radio receiver on your craft, as interference between the two units can be a major cause of interference.  As for your monitor, it is generally not recommended to start FPV flying with goggles, and especially not if you don't have much flying experience.  I recommend either transmitter or tower-mounted FPV monitor for starters (its also less expensive).

    If you are just starting out I'd recommend this sort of setup as a beginner, for your mapping purposes.  Go to HobbyKing and purchase one of their FPV kits (all are under $100) and you'll get a nice quality CCD camera, along with a large selection of operating frequencies (I recommend 900 or 1.3 gHz) and power (I recommend 400 to 600 mW).  Grab one of their inexpensive pan/tilt CCD cam mounts too ($5), if you want to maneuver the video feed. Also pick up one of their universal FPV monitor mounts for your transmitter ($10).  Next go to Banggood and purchase the SJ4000 action cam ($90), and one of their gimbals (many people like their $60 2D aluminum brushless gimbal).  You can pick up an inexpensive OSDminim clone from them too ($20) if you want.  Then go to Ebay or Amazon and look for a 7-9 inch TFT color monitor ($20-$30) to mount to your transmitter.

    With a little assembly, some tweaking, assigning channels on your transmitter, you'll be up and running a full-on inexpensive FPV setup that can handle your purposes.  You are looking at about $300 with this sort of fully functional FPV setup, which is less than the cost of a GoPro alone.  Though, you sometimes run a gamble when purchasing components from chinese suppliers, I've found all of my orders from Banggood to be free from defects.  This is a great DIY project, too, and it will probably help facilitate your FPV aptitude by learning exactly how everything goes together.

    Best of luck.

    • What exactly does the MinimOSD board do? Because if I get the Predator V2 RTF FPV kit, I won't get it.

    • hello,

      well I disagree with gimbal for beginners bad crash will wipe out you camera gear & gimbal try to build up confidence first. CCD, coms camera should be afixed to the frame no gimbal so you know the deflection of your craft.  I would stay away from large stores like Banggood.com  they do not respond to emails promptly and you be stuck if you find your self needing help support god forbid you have a problem . the cost is a little low as well since a good 7-10 inch monitor or gogles cost about $300. make sure the CCD , COMS  camera you select has a decent wide angle lens. other isuies is hobbyking sells some good stuff as well as some crap fat shark Emerson RC are most popular FPV gear. follow the rule you get what you pay for ! WAKERA also makes some inexpensive gimbal and camera FPV gear . 

      • All true.  I guess I should caveat my suggested build with the addendum 'Poor Man's FPV'.  You truly can throw together such a system for ~$300 as I have done it with a few different builds, but you run all sorts of gambles with quality no doubt.

        • I do want the best quality for my purchase, I realize that the technology is getting better and better everyday and people are coming up with new quads and fpv kits, and the one I purchase will most likely be out of date by 4 months.

           So I am considering spending more to get the best quality / newest piece of equipment.

          willing to spend $400.

  • fpv gear is subjective to the user and can be inexpensive as there are all in one systems available for sale . Or can be very expensive just depends on what your trying to accomplish? yes telemetry or OSD is a must 

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