Flying my Solo this evening when it flew off and crashed across the street after my son took a picture of it while it was hovering in front of him. No warning - just went. Solo was completely unresponsive to control attempts. See the event here:

Uploaded log to 3DR. Really lucky no one was hurt as kids had just been watching. Second flight - battery was around 20% - getting a picture just before going to land it.

Broke 3 blades but no damage to Solo or GoPro.

Doesn't build confidence when it just decides to do its own thing...

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So are you basically saying that Solo does not implement "Super Simple Mode"?

I would think that this should be the default setting for the Solo as it comes out of the box. Perhaps you could allow a user to turn it off in the Advanced settings menu when they achieve the skills to fly without it.

I looked at the Solo documentation and haven't noticed any mention of Super Simple Mode, nor of being careful to keep the front of the Solo pointed away from you or the controls will be backwards.

There is a very short sentence that describes the right stick on the controller where it says: "These movements are relative to Solo’s current orientation, so always maintain awareness of Solo’s forward-facing direction before using right-stick controls."

I think a beginner could easily miss this very important point. I'm very surprised that there wasn't a warning or enhanced notice to the operator to be careful about this.

So why no 'Super Simple Mode' in the Solo? Wouldn't this save a lot of frustration for new users? Or is the idea not  to let them rely on a crutch such as Super Simple Mode?

I would guess because it is glitchy as hell currently and has a tendency to flip direction of all controls 180 deg if you fly your drone too close to the operator - most people after that are unable to control it as it may start flipping that back again, or in some cases may not and may get stuck in reversed/inverted direction.

also, when you are in this 'super simple mode' and God forbid fly under some roof so all GPS glitches bad - drone can do some real crazy things. that is where you need to have a kill motor switch on your remote to turn it off immediately and just let it drop down.

'simple mode' that is driven by compass is more than adequate and works very reliably, again, unless you get really close to you with a transmitter, or any other big metal object that upsets compass reading, then drone may do some erratic moves or alter actual direction of your input controls.

remember that crash where lady flew too close to a bus? I bet drone was in a 'simple' mode and big metal object near to drone made it fly in a direction different from one operator dictated.

that is also a reason why I do not like what 3dr did for that solo remote. taranis with its 8 flip multi position switches is incredibly convenient to operate as you can turn off stuff very quickly just by your muscle memory.

in most cases it saves your vehicle from the crash. why 3dr did what they did for this solo remote is beyond me. they probably assumed it is more convenient to push fingers into iphone screen in a bright sun, I do not know.

I can say this...

On my home made quad, using a PixHawk, I'm happy to be a Pioneer.

But using the Solo that I purchased, I expect everything to work well, without me having to tweak, and debug, and try to get it to fly nicely.

I purchased it at a consumer store (Best Buy) and I expect it to work like any other higher end consumer electronic device. It should be reliable, and do what the manufacturer claims in its specifications and marketing.

This is what 3DR is marketing, an easy to fly, ready for the consumer "Smart Drone" (their words) that can make "Effortless Flight" (their words).

If simple mode, or super simple mode is not ready yet, then I understand it, but I would have expected them to get it worked out to help make the Solo achieve 'effortless flight'.

I'm having an issue with controller signal reliability on mine. I'm waiting for their tech support to get back to me with their log analysis before I make any more flights as I don't want to risk damage or injury if I lose control again. I saw some strange glitches in the logs, and I'm not experienced enough to know what they mean myself.

Very troubling - the amount of problems being reported. While nothing is perfect, the multitude of promises combined with the money and time spent developing this should have resulted in a reliable aircraft up to 2015 "consumer drone" standards.

Granted, consumer drone standards and TV (and similar non-user operated) electronics are a different thing - so some learning curve as well as some bugs and glitches are expected.

However, based on the price (60% higher than other camera quads) and promotion I expected something that works better than DIY hobbyist stuff. 

I didn't know that simple and/or super simple mode had such bad issues. I haven't seen any warnings about this. Thanks for mentioning it.

Is this the official stance about Simple and Super Simple modes?

bad? it is not bad. it is just if you fly your compass next to a huge chunk of metal - it will affect its readings and it will ruin all directional awareness of your system.

same with a real aircraft. that is why real aircraft has multiple systems in the different parts of a fuselage and uses intelligent techniques to assess what reading is accurate.

simple mode works just fine if your compass reading is not affected.

I asked several questions in the 'copter 3.3 beta' thread about super simple mode control direction inversion - not sure what devs think about it, I just stopped using it at all and in my opinion it is simply much less reliable than an old compass based one. that is my 2c.

as of compass isolation, there is not much what can be done. if you were on any navy ship you can look up how a properly isolated compass looks like - in a 500lb enclosure. what we have in the drone is extremely sensitive and is affected even by motors of same drone, so, you fly to a big chunk of metal - compass goes kaput.

may be they should have done some emergency mode to recognize this situation, and may be it even exists now in 3.3 beta but I never tested it enough to know how it works, or does not work.

Does your son have a Samsung phone? I've seen some phones kill a much larger and more accurate GPS system, maybe the phone killed the Solo's GPS fix. Is the phone setup to geotag each photo?

Gatts, that doesn't make sense. GPS receivers do not transmit anything.

Still amazed that people fly their new aircraft so close to houses and other obstacles where GPS signals are easily blocked.  We would have never thought of flying a RC model 10-15 years ago in our driveway, (fixed wing or rotorcraft).  It's a whole new bread of pilots.

You're a smart cookie Aaron, and quite correct...they don't. But phones do, and have been known to interfere with GPS systems.

Unlikely. GPS signals are L1 and L2, which is 1.57 and 1.23 GHz. As far as I know there are no transmitting radios on phones in those bands. I know there was some discussion of using L-band for 4G in England, but I don't think that's happened yet there or anywhere else in the world.

Do you have a source to support your statement?

And why would it matter whether the phone was geotagging images?

ps- I am a delightful flavor of butterscotch.

As Navteq's developed I worked hard to build GPS-free Location Based Services,

Indoor GPS-free (or GPS signal lost)  car navigation system.

There is a nice solution in case of GPS signal lost, since DIY drones are equipped with high-tech sensors which can temporary replace GPS signal.

Fly-away control process should be assigned with one of the highest priorities.

Twin-controller enabled drone boat can be useful to test fly-away control procedures and algorithms as well as GPS signal lost navigation.

3D passive video radar (3d vision) can be implemented to replace mini LIDAR or TAWS in case of multi camera drones, to detect near and semi-near obstacles ( 360 panorama)


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