Definitely the problem with clones has been that they often aren't really faithful clones and they commonly use third rate parts.
We are used to name brand electronics providing a certain level of performance, unfortunately flight controllers themselves aren't really likely to be a name brand product anytime soon.
As close as you can come are the RTF quadcopters like the Mavic.
But for flight controllers by themselves we are stuck with third rate clones or very low production garage shops often with parts supply and delivery problems.
For now, the dedicated small production guys are the best we can do.
Be interesting to see how this plays out in the future.
I think $200 is a fair price for a full system with GPS, but if this offering from 3DR is really from HK then it is a hobby grade. 3DR has no in-house engineering any more, does it? It may prove to be pretty decent like the HKPilot32 (not that I have one but many do) so it would be another option. But @Rob -- I agree though. I really like my Arsov boards -- they are quality boards. And I am definitely investing in the Pixhawk 2. The more I have looked at the Pix2 more I am convinced this is the reference point moving forward. I advise everyone that thinks they will be in the market for an FC to pre-order them so Phillip can get making more of them as they are going to be in short supply given the financial constraints of scaling up production.
I do wish 3DR success with this but I am so very puzzled as to why you are bothering at all. I mean Philip Rowse has with his tiny company managed to bring the Pix 2 to market. He really seems to be doing it the right way with regards building a dealer network. It is innovative and really has the potential to move us forward with the Edison co-processor and heated IMUs, 'click-mate' connectors (which I think are a positive -- anything other than DF13).
The 3DR Pix Mini just seems like a Pixfalcon with some improvements. The Pixfalcon is produced under GPL (at least HK has some some token design files posted, so I assume it is).
So 3DR decided to pass on bringing the Pix 2 to market -- clearly to my mind the best PX4/Ardupilot hardware out there right now -- and whose investors' money did much of the heavy lifting to create it, I am guessing. But 3DR then decides to re-enter the hardware market with a Hobbyking Pixfalcon with '20 changes' that is surely created under the same 'untouchable-in-the-valley' GPL. I am scratching my head at the business logic behind this. Why did 3DR not partner with Phillip and it could have been selling Pix 2 under the 3DR name by now surely. I just do not get the business logic that is driving 3DR these days. Pixhawk 2 would add some luster to 3DR. A HK Pixfalcon (albeit with 20 'changes') not so much.
The theory shared by some, myself included, about why 3DR decided not to pursue the Pixhawk2 design is that one of the key design goals, is that it can be easily paired with a companion computer. Any Linux processor can easily be connected to it. The result, is a system which has higher performance, and more cost effective than a dedicated system like what Qualcomm wants to sell. This makes the PH2 design a threat to Qualcomm's business plans, and with Qualcomm being one of the major investors in 3DR, would make it not surprising why 3DR isn't selling the Pixhawk2.
It's the only reason I can think of to explain why a company would pour so much money designing something, and then abandon it despite strong demand. And instead, decide to retail a second-rate hobby-grade system in it's place.
It's a fools errand however, because, open source being what it is, there's no way to stop somebody else producing the system that the market really wants.
And no, I don't think 3DR has any in-house engineering left. Which is why it took Jordi to produce a replacement GPS for the Solo, which fixes the critical and amateur design mistake 3DR made when designing the first Solo GPS module. A problem they have tried to sweep under the rug. I can only imagine in order to avoid admitting mistakes were made which were the real reason the Solo failed, and not simply external factors such as DJI pricing, etc.
Is that GPS simply plug and play compatible with the Solo?
And do you need a specific adapter?
Are you using it on your Solo?
Also not to forget other big Dronekit player Intel with it's own Edison based flight controller.
Yes Jordi's Solo GPS is plug and play!
@Roberto. I own XUAV X2, 3DR Pixhawk, and VR uBrain 5.2 (2 of them) and I must say it is a great board that any serious people should consider.
Roberto Navoni said:
VR Brain 5.2 still available in standard format and micro ,too . And it's official supported by the Ardupilot team .
So there are a lot of option instead to buy PixFalcon .
On VR Brain there are also Pro support for special application with integration in ROS. Some big company choose to use VR Brain Pro for its custom and complex drone.
You Guys give me an idea.
Apparently we have a lot of really good choices, some OK choices and lots of not so good choices.
What we need is a comprehensive description and capability, performance and reliability comparison of each one.
I do not think our main guys here, Philip, Roberto or Victor have anything to fear from this as you are clearly the lead systems.
But we really need a comprehensive description that lets each person make the most educated decision they can for themselves.
I don't think we are all likely to completely agree on comparative values, but we can come pretty close.
It appears we actually suffer from a plethora (lot) of systems and are currently really not picking the ones that are best for each of us.
Right now I am building a shop and have to put a roof on it soon, but I am still willing to participate in an effort to put this together if you all think it is worthwhile.
I will give it it's own entire section on my DronesAreFun web site and we can put it in a blog here and possibly on the ArduPilot site as well if they will have it.
@ Philip, thank you for the response.
yes. i don't want to be sarcastic on this, but looks like the wheel is turning backwards..
Jerry, did you delete your own comment?
How did the 250 fly with a bad IMU using the PixFalcon.? I have used every board from APM to the PixRacer and cannot get the Hobbyking PixFalcon to lift off without eventually flipping back wards. Are you using a power module to power the board? I am using two wires to connect to the PM , 5V and ground. We can't power the servo rail, as I am used to doing with all the other boards, also there is no ground connections to the ESCs'. Any thought you can share?
Gary, I've got a Pixfalcon on a 250 racer. The IMU failed after about 10-20 flights. I will be replacing it with an AUAV Pixracer, just haven't gotten around to it yet. I don't use Hobbyking junk anymore. They just have no quality control or engineering standards. They will even foist off junk with known major engineering errors, such as their Pixracer clones. I just don't have time to deal with this crap anymore.
Super excited about this - I've installed 4 Holybro Pixfalcons this year and I'm very happy with their performance, but I look forward to a 3DR version along with the new engineering improvements. I'll be refreshing the page regularly...
Chris Anderson said:
The Pixhawk Mini is a new version with upgraded sensors and CPU. It comes with adapter cables for old-style DF13 connector devices. That's a preview listing. The full listing will be coming this week.