Extending Movi Controller range

Discussion in 'MōVI Controller' started by Andrew Griffiths, Feb 6, 2015.

  1. Paul Christopher Greene

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    Interesting indeed...why are you using the small stock movi antenna vs the bigger one from the booster?
     
  2. Mark Hoffman

    Mark Hoffman Active Member

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    Derek

    I'm not surprised that you have trouble connecting to the wedge at close distances with a 4watt booster. You are basically swamping the wedge receiver when you get close. There are probably insane amounts of multipath interference inside and that is why you have to go outside to get it to connect to the wedge. I have not tried a booster yet but if I do I will look for a lower power one, something in the 1 to 2 watt range.
     
  3. Derek Cooper

    Derek Cooper Active Member

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    Ok - sounds plausible.

    You seem to know what you're talking about - what do you think is the ideal booster for the Movi Controller to talk to the Movi and WEDGE while in-flight on a drone? If the RC radios can communicate with the drone at incredible distances and even the Connex can out-distance the Movi Controller, there must be a way to *improve* the Movi Controller's performance, no?
     
  4. Mark Hoffman

    Mark Hoffman Active Member

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    Let me qualify this by stating that I am no RF expert, but I have been flying RC for 20+ years and FPVing for over a decade now so I had to learn a little about it over the years.

    I think 4 watts is way overkill for a booster, I would give the Sunhaus 1 or 2 watt a try before the 4 watt but that being said that advertised 4 watt might not actually be that powerful it would need to be tested to know for sure.

    Currently I am running the Movi controller with just upgraded antennas, a 7db on the Movi controller and a longer antenna on the rx so it hangs below the movi and camera http://www.getfpv.com/frsky-receive...C5C9AAA8EC96&gclid=CNWBu7X_hc4CFZE0aQodlSMNJw

    The new antennas help but the range could be better and it is the weak link in the chain.

    It you have ever opened up your movi controller you'll find an xbee radio in there, they have never been that great on range. I would think freefly could come up with a different choice for rf that could be user upgradable but that may involve developing one of their own which certainly would take some time and resources. I can't think of anything off the top of my head that could just be plug and play to replace the xbee.

    I can understand why freefly hasn't pursued the Connex integration, the Connex uses sbus and sbus probably wouldn't suffice for the movi controller which uses bidirectional comms for all of the programming and monitoring features not to mention the wedge which would have to be connected to the loop somehow.
     
    #144 Mark Hoffman, Jul 21, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2016
  5. Stefan Helborg

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    I have never experienced that problem. But when I use it in short distance, when I eg. test it at home or using it handheld, I do not power on the booster. I think that when it is not powered, so the antennasignal from the MoVI Controller just runs right through the booster.

    I have previously tried to have contact with it all at a distance of about 100m and then find out that I had forgotten to put power to the booster :D
     
  6. Mark Hoffman

    Mark Hoffman Active Member

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    Most wifi booster do pass thru the signal when they are not powered on. Derek, perhaps a switch on the booster could solve your problems with linking at close range, or just leave it off if you're doing a shot that doesn't require longer range.
     
  7. Derek Cooper

    Derek Cooper Active Member

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    What would you say you get for maximum distance with your setup? Movi Controller talking to the WEDGE and Movi on a drone.
     
  8. Paul Christopher Greene

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    Which 7db booster are you using Mark? Our 3000mW 35dBm WiFi booster ain't cutting it :/.

    I believe Derek may have mentioned getting a 2.5Ghz to 5.8 Ghz converter / booster as a way to get above the 2.5Ghz noise and congestion. Anyone able to weigh in on that?

    Thanks for contributing to the thread...I still can't believe there is no clear path to reliable long range MoVI control :/





     
  9. Stefan Helborg

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    The longest I've tried is 700 meters and everything worked. All that began to disappear, was the image signal that pixelated a little.

    I have not tried to fly farther away.
     
  10. Mark Hoffman

    Mark Hoffman Active Member

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    Paul I currently do not use a booster but and 7db antenna like this http://www.l-com.com/wireless-antenna-24-ghz-7-dbi-rubber-duck-antenna-rp-sma-plug-connector on the controller side. With these antennas I get around 5-700 feet of range which is fine for about 90% of the shooting I do but it really needs to be about 1500 feet. Many times when we lose radio with the movi controller I have to remind the cam op to raise the antenna or stop blocking it with his body that is between the controller and the airborne movi, something to keep in mind. If I were using a booster I would probably use the stock 3db antenna, because it is more omni than the 7db with its "squashed" radiation pattern.

    2.4 to 5.8ghz converter (whatever that is?) wouldn't work with the Movi receiver.
     
  11. Ursa Frey

    Ursa Frey New Member

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    Hi...i am a new user here. I want to know that has anyone looked into opening up the controller and somehow boosting the signal with a new transmitter? I would really like to increase the range on mine. I sent Freelfly an email asking if there was any way to extend the range - they told me that on power level 4 (18dBm) that this is the maximum output allowed by the FCC.

    assembly prototype
     
    #151 Ursa Frey, Jul 24, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2016
  12. Paul Christopher Greene

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    Has anyone tried Dragon Link V3 or 9XR or FRSKY Taranis to extend Spektrum DX7 range? Any reason one of these solutions wouldn't work?

    This looks promising, but don't know how to configure RX end on MoVI...

    http://www.fpvmanuals.com/?p=67

    Thank you all helping in our mutual quest to improve gimbal control range...
     
    #152 Paul Christopher Greene, Jul 24, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2016
  13. Derek Cooper

    Derek Cooper Active Member

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    Nope, not me - I have a hard enough time spelling Ghz let alone make recommendations like that! LOL
     
  14. Derek Cooper

    Derek Cooper Active Member

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    That is fantastic Mark! And who doesn't love using a rubber duck antenna?

    What are the conditions that garner 500 to 700' of range? Drone? HD video TX/RX present?

    If it's just plain Jane Movi Controller to Movi in a field with no other equipment nearby, I can see those ranges - but as soon as you introduce other radio emitting devices, I'm not sure we've ever seen anything close to those distances. Very curious.
     
    #154 Derek Cooper, Jul 25, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2016
  15. Mark Hoffman

    Mark Hoffman Active Member

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    Derek

    That range is in the air with a Connex HD on the gimbal and a 1.3ghz VTX on the hex, I'm using 2.4ghz Futaba for my RC link. If you are using a 5.8ghz VTX for an fpv feed, I would switch that out with a 1.3ghz not for the sake of the Movi controller, but I got better range with the Connex.
     
  16. Derek Cooper

    Derek Cooper Active Member

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    I've asked Ben Ruffel to join this conversation - he always has great ideas based on experience. Not sure if he's using the Movi Controller though...
     
  17. Derek Cooper

    Derek Cooper Active Member

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    No FPV. Similar setup here to yours with Connex.
     
  18. Derek Cooper

    Derek Cooper Active Member

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    This is totally going to blow you guys away.

    I started thinking, if some people are reporting no issues with their Movi Controller range using the stock antenna, perhaps there are *bad* Movi Controllers in circulation?

    So I undertook a test - I grabbed a backup Movi Controller we have, kitted it out like our primary controller, and started a distance test. Amazingly, while bound to both a Movi M15 and a WEDGE, we topped out at 1,230' in a dense urban environment using the stock antenna. Yes, 1,230' which is crazy!!!

    Just emailed support asking to RMA our *primary* Movi Controller as obviously there is something wrong with that unit.

    So there you go - if you're experiencing range issues with your Movi Controller, grab a second one and test.
     
  19. Mark Hoffman

    Mark Hoffman Active Member

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    Derek

    I know I should probably have a back up MoVI Controller but unfortunately I do not so I can't compare. Please keep us advised if they find anything wrong with you primary controller. Did you perhaps test the first unit in the same environment? What type of range did you get with it?
     
  20. Paul Christopher Greene

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    This is maddening lol...please let us know what you determine...thank you.
     

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