New: Air Pro Ion HD Video Camera for FPV

ION Air Pro WiFi

I found this HD camera on the net today, and it seems to be the perfect alternative to the GoPro, as it is lighter and has a smaller size, which could be important in terms of micro-quads, etc..

Its smaller than the GoPro HD Hero, at 4 inches long and half inches across and weighing in at 4.5 oz, it is a  truly ultralight HD videocam with the added bonus that it looks the part of "Eye in The Sky"

There are outputs for HD video, so just hook it up to a FPV transmitter and you are good to go! MicroSD cards are supported and you can record videos directly, even without an FPV setup. Beneath the bubble-shape front of the camera there is a 170-degree wide-angle lens which can capture video along with 5-megapixel HD stills.

The on-board battery is clamed to be good to upto 4 hours of 1080p recording, and it can be connected via USB to a computer to download the photos or charge the battery.

Another version, with WiFi,is also capable of steaming video to your iDevice/ Android device ,while the iPhone/Android phone,etc. acts as a controller for the camera. (Think PhoneDrone with this camera!!!)

At $230, without any accessories, I think its a pretty good deal as it is extremely light and small, with is infact a big deciding factor for me, as I design micro-quads only.

More details at their website, and be sure to check out the other models as well!!

Air Pro ION

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  • Tried it out and a few immediate shortfalls. First is the cameras own OSD information (battery, hd mode, date etc) can't be toggled off in preview mode. So unwanted and uncontrollable clutter on the screen. Second, although the picture orientates itself on the recording, the preview doesn't. This means you need to mount the camera the correct way up when using it for FPV. This limits some of the mounting options and position on my quad frame. Finally you need to fly with the rear camera cover off in order to plug into the av jack and pass the image to your video tx for FPV. So all the other rear ports are expose hen flying.

    I contacted ion support and they have no current plans to offer a suitable rear cover with jack pass through. Can't seem to find anyone carrying spare rear covers or I'd have a go at modding my own.

  • Just bought one of these (ion air pro), appealed to me as it was a third cheaper here in the UK than the GoPro Hero2. Using an immersionrc to gopro lead which works fine and gives me pass through AV for the OSD and video TX. have to fly with the PODZ cover off which is less than ideal but I can't find any spares listed anywhere or I'd get a one and convert it to allow the video jack to pass through while retaining some protection for the other ports. Other down side is I can't find any of the ion mounts that aren't part of a much more expensive kit so have opted for a gopro mount conversion (uses tripod screw) so I can use  the easy to find gopro quick release mounts and swap the camera between planes and quads. Final step will be to try and build a suitable roll/tilt moun, all the commercial offerings seem to be sized to the gopro and I'd prefer something more streamlined.

    Generally the camera seems like it is built well and of a good quality, I'll post some videos once the weather improves so people can Judge the quality, of the video not my flying that is :)

  • The Ion has higher contrast and it looks like more color saturation which can be a double edged sword. And of course its being compared to the old GoPro.

  • Horyzon HD is a great FPV camera by design, but it is flawed in a few areas and needs development (which are in progress ttbomk). Its a jamming device on 433mhz, and is a bit fickle about supply voltage. As said above however, when refined it will be a GoPro killer for FPV work.
  • I use a Sony Bloggie the old one with the swivel lens, it has live out and lies flat records in hd. Cost me $115

    Regards Pete

  • Developer

    Thnx for clearing the doubts mods!

  • Well, seems a little difficult to get into, but looks like there's a live preview for the TV/NTSC, so it might work.  But $229 is not much cheaper than GoPro, and if I were to just use it for FPV the video quality needed would max out @ about 650VL, so neither GoPro nor ION is necessary anyways. Personally, I'd just go with that Super HAD CCD camera, more than adequate for $52.

  • Mohammed, not necessarily.  It could just be for playback of recordings.  That means the digital video is converted to analog on playback.  FPV requires that live video from the camera is converted to analog realtime.  You need a high speed DAC for that, and it's more expensive, so most camera makers don't incorporate that into their design to save money, since there usually isn't a need to see the video in low-res in realtime.

  • Developer

    There is an " Output : A/V Composite " on the box, and it ships with an tri-colour A/V cable, so I guess that it will output to NTSC A/V connector lines

  • Well, seems clear that the ION has better video quality.  However, has anyone confirmed that the ION will output to NTSC A/V connectors live?  You will need that for FPV.  Most of the time these cameras, only playback to A/V, especially the HD ones, since you need the additional circuit to do the video resolution down conversion to NTSC from 1080p.  The GoPro definitely has that capability, it's a given.

    On the other hand, this 600VL, Sony Super HAD CCD camera has all you need for FPV, and is only $52:

    Check out this review by  RCModelReviews:

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