Naza M vs. APM 2

Had a chance to compare the Naza M to AMP 2 this weekend and wanted to share the experience.

The comparison was done on two similarly sized custom built quads at ~24" span running the same props, motors, PDU and ESCs.  The Naza quad had a Go Pro and Fat Shark FPV 5.8Ghz Transmitter and weighted in at about 3.1 Lbs.  The APM Quad (mine) had no additional equipment besides a Sonar and it weighed about 2.75 Lbs.

In general both performed very well with a nod going to the Naza in Loiter, RTL and auto landing due to what appears to be a better GPS.  Clearly APM has auto mode and Naza does not.. for the price the APM appears to be a solid value.

Stable Mode

As expected both quads were equally stable with no real noticeable difference in stability.  The only big difference was NO TUNING on the Naza... it just worked out of the box.


The Naza quad had a noticeable difference in loiter stability and accuracy.  Granted my quad my not be tuned perfectly but the Naza held its position more accurately and with less twitching in the wind to do so.  The Naza's corrections to the wind seemed to be invisible.. where the APM corrections were noticeable in both pitch and prop noise.



We did a RTL comparison taking off from the same spot and flying about 100 yards away at about 35 feet.  The Naza returned to the exact spot of take off.  APM got within 10 feet  (see below).


Auto Landing

Testing the auto landing during RTL..... the Naza descended from 35 feet in what appeared to be about 5 foot increments.  It was a very controlled decent.  It landed perfectly on home and shutoff.  As mentioned the APM quad hit the launch point within 10 feet.  Its decent to landing was steadily and constant.  When it touched down it then proceeded to skip around on the ground and went another 10 feet from its landing point before shutting down.


The Naza has no autopilot.  I finally got all the gremlins out of my APM and flew several successful missions which was very cool.


APM is ~$200 with GPS and Autopilot

Naza is ~$240 + and additional ~$160 for GPS. = $400

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  • Simple comparison, IMHO: open source or closed source.

    I'll take open source any day of the week. I have both and I can find no specs for anything to do with anything DJI touches.

  • I have 3 Naza (several fly aways) and just move to APM, learn a lot from the internet (Jabram on RCG).Finally I end up with a good flying mini spider hexa, loiter RTL AltHold are excellent. And It took me about 30 minutes to tune PID using channel 6.
    Now I can say NAZA is way too expensive....
  • Could someone help me with THIS for the naza

  • I've been reading through these posts and wondering about something? What is everyone trying to tune? I recently upgraded my APM 2.5 by cutting the compass trace then adding the external compass/gps module. I then upgraded the FW to 3.1. I had a bit of a problem calibrating the Z axiz for the compass but finally figured it out.

    Keep in mind I'm still new to APM and multicopters.

    I test flew it and it was spectacular. There is a couple of little anomalies but I don't know if tuning would help that.

    I did have issues while flying away from me in Alt Hold. It descended as it flew away from me. It got a little twitch to it after a few flights. During take off it would twitch to the right. The other bug was the RTL didn't initiate during a low battery condition and ended up plopping on the ground as it descended and flipped over. This happened once. Most of the other times I initiated it manually. The very first flight it worked perfectly on it's own.

    Other than that it was rock solid and I had a blast with it. It's much better than 2.6 was. RTL was within inches and Loiter was rock solid. RTL landed and shut down on its own. I didn't do any tuning other than the setup wizard.

    I posted my log files but haven't heard from anyone yet.

    Maybe there's to much tuning going on?


  •  I had the opportunity to set up a few copters for an outfit doing some aerial cinematography and they insisted on the Naza-M contrary to my recommendations they give the APM a try first. I don't know if I am doing something right but I have been getting excellent results in Loiter, Stabilise and RTL since  AC2.9 . Even though I see the guys at the local field spend most of their time troubleshooting their Nazas, I was excited about getting to try one out. I was unimpressed with the Naza-M's performance right away. The modes felt anti intuitive and very limited. The loiter compared more to AC 2.6. Never tried the RTL, but I get beautiful, smooth landings within about a meter of launch ( if not practically dead on)  every time. 

      I still have a Naza left over from these builds , but it has seen the inside of my copters for the last time. 

    My sincere thanks go to all the developer's of the ArduCopter platform and the dedicated communities of users worldwide who prove its functionality and test its limits. Naza can't  hold a light to your progress.

    I did like the little external LED and miniUSB jack given my autopilot is hidden away inside the copter out of view.

  • UPDATE: APM is now $240 with GPS and NAZA-M Lite with GPS is $200. The NAZA-M Lite is simply the earlier version of NAZA-M that they were selling before that worked extremely well.

  • New version ArduCopter-2.9-rc1.

    Where can i get this files compiled ready for upload to my APM 2.5 board?

  • i think there are too many released for apm 2.5....the team should wait before to release a new version and try to fix all bugs 

    it s the reason why arducopter is not very famous like the begining of the project lots of people had not happy because nothing working  really well

    now the project seem to be better..but not enaught userfriendly!

    i am very happy to see this project move on but i think we need to aim in the good way the development..less features but with better results for example

  • Here's some photos from inside the NAZA GPS unit - it's interesting that the tops of the ICs (chips) have been "etched" to hide any markings...


  • I just want to put in my feedback as I have used both also on there recommend platforms (3DR quad, F450 flamewheel) using default PI values but I do not have the gps on the Naza 


    The Naza's stability is a tad better but The Apm stable mode allows you to fly more aggressively and a little less soft than the Naza. I actually prefer the APM here but the naza may feel better to beginners.

    Alt Hold

    The Naza out preforms the APM by a small margin. In forward flight the alt hold on the naza stays at almost the same alt and is very consistent where the APM drifts a little. Controling the altitude of the alt hold feels better and less "soft" on the Naza

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