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Questions about good FC for Video and Hoverfly FC

Discussion in 'Aerial Photography and Video Discussion' started by Bad Mosquito, Jan 3, 2016.

  1. Bad Mosquito

    Bad Mosquito Member

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    Posted by Bad Mosquito, Jan 3, 2016 #1
    Hey guys,

    New to the forums. This post will be my second post, but I've been reading a lot and decided to finally jump into the community. (I'll try not to hurt anyone.)

    So I have a keen interest in aerial videography, being a member of the production industry I like the problems a multirotor can solve so I'm seriously thinking of piecing my own together. I want to build something I can crash and learn on and I like the idea of building my own (I like to learn the hard way.)

    Anyway, that brings me to my question about flight controllers. I'm looking for a low cost stable beginner FC and I like what I've read and seen about Hoverfly boards (I'm still open to anything at this point) but I can't seem to find out a lot of information about them... or where to buy them.

    For a cheap board I think the Hoverfly Sport would work, but from what I've read they're discontinued and Hoverfly morphed them into the Hoverfly Open... is that correct? and is the Hoverfly Open just as good as the Sport? And is the Sport a good beginner board for getting into aerial videography? Or should I go for one of their other boards? If they even have them. I've been to their website and it looks like their store is down, so I'm not even sure what they're doing with themselves.

    Anyway, in short, any advice about what's up with Hoverfly or a good low cost stable FC would be a huge help at this point.

    Thank you.
     
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  2. Stacky

    Stacky Member

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    Posted by Stacky, Jan 3, 2016 #2
    Hi, I have been using Hoverfly boards since they first came out, I have 2 HFP boards. In manual mode and also Attitude (auto level) mode they are superb. The big problem comes from running GPS. There is a GPS board which i dont own but its performance is probably not as good as the other GPS systems available. If you have no need or desire to run a multi with GPS then yes its a great flying FC. I dont know about the Hoverfly Open but I dont think they are manufacturing the HFP or Sport boards anymore. They may have some in stock. I have a rough understanding that they have moved into more military or research based work although i could be completely wrong about that, I am pretty sure they are still operating but have moved away from consumer based solutions. You might have to try and find a second hand board. If you do decide that you dont need GPS and do get your hands on a board there are a bunch of us who can help. BTW the HFP is not low cost board, they were $450 new
     
    2 people like this.
  3. SleepyC

    SleepyC www.AirHeadMedia.com

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    Posted by SleepyC, Jan 3, 2016 #3
    The HoverFly Sport board (Sub $100) flew great. Very stable.
    And the HFP was awesome. And they were just getting the GPS board to start working pretty well using a new Ubloc gps.
    But they abandoned the hobby industry and wet military so there is no support.

    Still the smoothest flying board in my opinion.
     
    2 people like this.
  4. Bad Mosquito

    Bad Mosquito Member

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    Posted by Bad Mosquito, Jan 3, 2016 #4
    Interesting, thanks guys. That's a big help.

    Stacky, any ideas where I might find a second hand board? Ebay was pretty useless, haven't tried craigslist yet.

    I did find a website that seems to be selling the Hoverfly Open (150). I don't know if it's a legit HF board or just a knock off. I was aware that the HFP was expensive, but I was hoping they had lower cost intro boards. Sounds like the HFS would have been perfect for me.
     
  5. Hoki

    Hoki Member

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    Posted by Hoki, Jan 3, 2016 #5
    What about the cc3d gps version? Or apm gps?
     
  6. SamaraMedia

    SamaraMedia Active Member

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    Posted by SamaraMedia, Jan 3, 2016 #6
    Bartman has always been a proponent of Hoverfly, he might have a spare around he would be willing to part with.
     
    2 people like this.
  7. Stacky

    Stacky Member

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    Posted by Stacky, Jan 3, 2016 #7
    Jwoike mentioned Bartman. Pop an ad in the classifieds. I wont ever sell mine but you might find others who would.
     
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  8. Bad Mosquito

    Bad Mosquito Member

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    Posted by Bad Mosquito, Jan 3, 2016 #8
    Well, I got impatient and just bought the HF Open on the website I mentioned. They only have 40 left in stock and I wasn't sure if they were going to be able to replenish them seeing as HF is getting out of the consumer market–so I just nabbed it quick.

    I found a few posts somewhere else that mentioned the board was the same as the HF Sport just that they made the software open source (which appeals to me). There are probably some minor differences in components, but I'm thinking it will be the same quality as the other HF boards that I've heard people raving about. It would be interesting to compare the differences between the HF Open and the HF Sport, though I doubt I'll be able to do that.

    Perhaps I'll post my thoughts about the board as i use it. Here's the manual for the HF open in case anyone is interested: https://www.parallax.com/sites/default/files/downloads/80000-Hoverfly-OPEN-Users-Guide-v1.0.pdf
     
  9. Bartman

    Bartman Welcome to MultiRotorForums.com!!

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    Posted by Bartman, Jan 4, 2016 #9
    i think i have three in reserve at the moment and can sell one.

    @Bad Mosquito@Bad Mosquito take a look around the classifieds, i'd let one go for $70 and include the rubber mounting isolators if that works for you. i also have a spare GPS I could sell but you'd have to get the GPS antenna upgrade and do the mod to make it work. the last GPS update was a lot better and was actually very useable for position hold and return to home. there's a thread in the HF sub-forum that explains the process.

    here are the pros and cons, imho

    PROS;
    Flies superbaliciously
    easy to set up
    tuning is limited to one parameter done via a radio channel
    ultra reliable
    no annoying firmware updates!
    works equally well with inexpensive Turnigy Plush ESC's

    CONS;
    Flies so well and is so reliable you'll wonder why you'd bother with other flight controllers
    larger footprint
    built in OSD doesn't display well against a bright background
    separate power input (I settled on using a small 3S pack as a dedicated FC power source but a buck regulator works just as well)
    no firmware updates, company abandoned the project but the site is still there for re-flashing when necessary, for now
     
  10. SamaraMedia

    SamaraMedia Active Member

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    Posted by SamaraMedia, Jan 4, 2016 #10
    I have one Pro board that I bought used here a couple years back but never mounted it on a rig but I'm reconsidering it these days. Bart, you mentioned separate power supply or buck converter. I've kind of shelved the unit since it is only rated to 4s and I'm using mostly 6s on my rigs, except a couple smaller quads, but if I can get away with a buck converter for the FC and 6s for motors and esc's I may have to give this a serious look at using.
     
  11. Bartman

    Bartman Welcome to MultiRotorForums.com!!

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    Posted by Bartman, Jan 4, 2016 #11
    i'm pretty sure that's exactly what I was doing, i had a switch for the FC battery as it would last a long time. use a buck converter and you can 86 the switch
     
  12. SamaraMedia

    SamaraMedia Active Member

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    Posted by SamaraMedia, Jan 4, 2016 #12
    Thanks Bart! Will have to consider this for a winter build.
     
  13. Bad Mosquito

    Bad Mosquito Member

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    Posted by Bad Mosquito, Jan 4, 2016 #13
    That's a tempting offer. Which board are you offering? GPS sounds good too.
     
  14. Stacky

    Stacky Member

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    Posted by Stacky, Jan 4, 2016 #14
    Will be interested to hear what you think about it. Check in with people here when you get it as for some the HF can be a battle to set up for those used to other FC's, it is a little different but once you get your head around it will find it easier than others.
    I hope you are a good and experienced pilot who can fly in manual mode because to me it looks like the HF Open doesnt have auto level/ Attitude mode but I could be wrong,
     
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