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Best value FPV gear?

#1
So, I am thinking of building an FPV plane. First venture into FPV, but I want to know what people think is the best value to be had in FPV systems? I want something that works well, is not going to be hopelessly outdated next year but still be affordable. In other words, best value for your money.
The mid-speed Intel i5 of the FPV world...
 

FDS

Well-known member
#2
Simple All In One (AOI) camera and Video Transmitter (VTX) ideally one that goes up to 200mw then a cheap set of box goggles. That set up has worked great for me on land and air vehicles. Easy to wire too, simply run it off a 5v and ground pin on the receiver.
 

Bricks

Well-known member
#3
On my planes I like to run my camera off of the balance lead using a matching JST male connector and then connect the wires to the pins to get the correct voltage needed for the camera.
 
#4
I am also interested FPV, I have a Hobbyzone cub S 2. It is pre-wired for FPV. I have been hunting around on the innerwebs and found FPV made for that plane, or made for planes like that, all in one like @FDS is describing. Good news, I am about a year or two late as it appears to be out of production. It was a joint venture between Fatshark and Hobbyzone.

Is anyone aware of something like that where I can get a fatshark goggle and a small camera so i know they will both talk to each other and [lay nice in the sand box. I believe the camera is not out of production, but I don't know anything about FPV other than it looks super fun.

Thanks for the help in advance.
 
#5
Hello,
from an experienced pilot (8eight years into the hobby).
Don't get AIO! They are kinda bad when it comes to reception and image quality, I bought the Eachine 1200 VTX (for 13bucks at from Banggood) and a new Mobius Cam (for 15bucks from the Online bookstore Thalia here in Germany).
A 7inch (ca. 18 cm) screen on my Remote is my Go-to Solution but I also have the 5inch (ca. 13 cm) Box FPV from Marek from Poland.
 
#7
so @stereodreieck86 you are saying that I should mix and match to get the best performance? Is there anything special I need to look out for to get all of these items to talk to each other?
Exactly, but your question is sooo broad I could recommend everything and nothing to you.
So, your first step should be to narrow it way down! Budget, Quality, Long range or not, Size and so on.
 

PsyBorg

Wake up! Time to fly!
#8
Im with @stereodreieck86 on this. Recommendations would need more detail for the circumstances being used. For wide open spaces and small flying areas under perfect light conditions the AIO recommended would be fine. If you were to try and fly with one on a less then bright sunny day or in places where lighting is not steady they can be a severe hazard as they have very poor light management.

Cheap is not usually the answer for a safe and enjoyable fpv experience. It only takes one time to lose signal or be blinded by a washed out screen that you learn this lesson. Like anything else properly match the gear to the use.
 

Flite Risk

Active member
#9
So, I am thinking of building an FPV plane. First venture into FPV, but I want to know what people think is the best value to be had in FPV systems? I want something that works well, is not going to be hopelessly outdated next year but still be affordable. In other words, best value for your money.
The mid-speed Intel i5 of the FPV world...
a bad antenna setup will destroy the best goggles.
a great antenna setup will help a bad set of goggles.

Follow iBcrazy (Alex Greve) from V.A.S. (Video Aerial Systems). I have spent time with him, he is a brilliant individual and an asset to our hobby.
 
#10
Thank you all very much. I agree I should probably give you more information about the area I fly and what I am flying. I am flying in a wide open grass area about the size of a soccer field, (football) for my friends across the pond. Sorry, that term cracks me up, across the pond, that is a really big pond, okay back on topic, lol. I have complete line of sight, the field is lined with trees on side but I do not fly over them, I try to keep my planes out of the trees as best I can. I fly a Hobbyzone champ 3 channel, and a Hobbyzone Cubs S 2, that it is prewired for FPV. This is my first four channel plane, I will be moving up to a FT P51 mustang next, but wanted to spend the rest of the summer getting used to the cub before I move up as I understand the P51 is pretty quick. I would like to be able to move FPV from plane to plane but am not sure if that is possible. I am setting up my budget right now so I am planning $300, but I know goggles can cost $1000 plus.
 

JasonK

Well-known member
#11
Do you have your Technician (or better) Amateur radio license? Most VTXs require that to be legally operated.

Are you looking to do on plane recording or just having the video downlink?

I have been using a 25mW all in one camera/TX/Cloverleaf at the local RC Airfield (bigger then a soccer field) just fine [other then the camera not having as good of a dynamic range as I would like]. I wasn't sure if I wanted to get into the whole FPV thing, I picked up a ~$60 box headset and a <$20 all in one camera VTX and they have been working fairly good. I definately have been making good use of my spotter to help me coordinate were my plane is.
 
#13
Do you have your Technician (or better) Amateur radio license? Most VTXs require that to be legally operated.

Are you looking to do on plane recording or just having the video downlink?

I have been using a 25mW all in one camera/TX/Cloverleaf at the local RC Airfield (bigger then a soccer field) just fine [other then the camera not having as good of a dynamic range as I would like]. I wasn't sure if I wanted to get into the whole FPV thing, I picked up a ~$60 box headset and a <$20 all in one camera VTX and they have been working fairly good. I definately have been making good use of my spotter to help me coordinate were my plane is.
Sadly I was unaware of any license requirements so I do not have a Technician (or better) so that is going to be a problem. I would like to record my plane flying so I can watch it later.
 

JasonK

Well-known member
#14
Hopefully someone else can give you some recommended equipment, I will probably be looking for some light weight items that are the same in the near future. I might even be interested in flat screen myself (the headset has been intresting to adjust to... and the screen lets you look up at the plane).
 
#15
Sadly I was unaware of any license requirements so I do not have a Technician (or better) so that is going to be a problem. I would like to record my plane flying so I can watch it later.
Getting a HAM technician license is easy. An average person should be able to study for and pass the technician test in one week. I wouldn't consider it a barrier. Yeah, the utilitarian nature of worldwide HAM communication is a bit pointless in the face of mobile phones and worldwide free crystal clear video chat over the Internet, but it is simple to get an FCC license. I did the technician and general tests in one sitting for the fun of it earlier this month.... KC3PQL

Some advice on goggles I didn't think of when I started.... VISION. Not every goggle is designed to be adjusted for vision issues. Pay attention carefully if this could be an issue for you. I got the Eachine EV800D and I'm 50 YO, so I couldn't see crap on the screen because I can't read a screen when it is 6 inches from my eyes. Luckily I have a 3D printer and was able to print an extender adapter to move the screen to the right distance for me.
 
#16
Yea I do not have young eyes so I better look for something with adjustment. That is all I would need is put them on and not be able to see crap. Thank you for the advise.
 
#17
I highly recommend the FXT viper fpv goggles they're in the $150-$170 price range, which I think would fit into your $300 budget. I share them with my brother who wears glasses and they work great for both of us. I did replace the antennas that came included but I have been using these goggles for a year now and I'm very happy with them. If I recall correctly I think FT did and brief video on them a while ago but there is lots of reviews on YouTube if you are interested. Also they do have a on-board DVR so you can record your flights which you said you would like to do. Anyway, just my 2 cents, hope that helps.
 

PsyBorg

Wake up! Time to fly!
#18
These are the goggles I use. No extra modules needed
https://www.racedayquads.com/collec...one-sky02c-diversity-5-8ghz-fpv-goggles-white

With this antenna and a stock dipole.
https://www.racedayquads.com/collec...2-5-8ghz-long-range-sma-antenna-rhcp-and-lhcp

and this on my quads.
https://www.racedayquads.com/collec...xii-2-5-8ghz-stubby-sma-antenna-rhcp-and-lhcp

In my opinion they produce better video and recording then ANY fat shark set up I have seen on you tube.

I have vision issues due to migraines and my vision literally changes hour by hour and I have never had a problem seeing well enough to fly with these. In fact Its much easier on my eyes and headaches looking thru these with the contrast and brightness adjustability I wish I could wear them all the time to see with. You can also get general diopters if needed and there is a place in Gemany (obviously for a higher price) that will grind a set to meet your prescription if you have one.

Also you dont have to buy everything at once. Its best to do more research and get a good set up once then having to upgrade again and again.