FPV Shopping Bag

December 26, 2013 19:15 | By | Add a Comment

FPV shopping time! In this new segment we’ll take a look at various new products that came out recently, in the hope that there’s something interesting for you. As always, if you have any hints or suggestions for new gear, please let us know!


The Pixhawk flight controller is now shipping. Yours for $280 (sans GPS and telemetry), it can be ordered from the 3DR store. Designed for the new QGroundControl software, this open source flight controller is ready for fleet operations where one ground station controls multiple UAVs in flight, with tons of connectivity options. Warning: SBUS or CPPM receiver output signal required, or you need to order an extra PPM Encoder board!
This dual 5.8GHz transmitter allows you to send two video signals on two different channels. This can be used for diversity sending on the aircraft side, or to transmit two different viewpoints at the same time. It’s a bit pricy at $120 over at GLB. Allegedly it’s 500mW, but it does support audio transmission (for antenna trackers)
A BEC for $9? That’s not bad by itself, but this is an integrated power distribution board with dual BECs specifically for multicopters. Up to 6S LiPos are supported, though each BEC can only drive up to 2A. Oh and one BEC output can be adjusted between 5 and 20V – which is awesome if you need 12V on a 4S multicopter but don’t want extra weight.
Helical antenna are great. Most builds suffer from poor construction however. This one is just $30 and features a solid guided construction that prevents the springy bit from compressing and thus detuning. It comes with a flex cable, and is available only in right handed circular polarization. If your transmitter antenna is left-circular, this is not what you want. On the plus side, you can order SMA and RP-SMA versions depending on your connector.
Got a great camera for FPV that unfortunately only outputs HDMI? This little converter board will take your HDMI signal and output analog video for a little over $28. It supports a whole range of HDMI resolutions and runs off the 5V of your typical BEC.
Got a Canon 5D Mark III? Gimbals for this beast can cost a pretty penny. Here’s a cost effective carbon fiber gimbal, available in a two axis version for $222, as well as a three axis version for $269. No gimbal controller included, so you have to spend another $100-$150 depending on your setup. You can’t reasonably expect DJI level build quality here. However judging from our experiences with the Zenmuse H3-2D (the gimbal switches OFF if you bang against the endpoint), better build quality does not always mean less problems. Ultimately the 5D is an expensive camera, so the question is whether you want to entrust it to a budget gimbal.


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FPVCentral is a private, independent news and review site for all things related to First Person View RC model flight. Covering everything from hobby, commercial and military drones, RC models and electronics related to FPV flight, we are not sponsored by any manufacturer or affiliated with any company or project.

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