You did a short reveiw of the Predators inside the Intermediate FPV episode. I myself am now determining between the dominators and the Predators. You could also tell us about the new features compared to the original FatSharks.
In terms of V1 Predator vs Dominator, I own the former.
What they have in common is the screens. Both are 640*480 equivalent.
Here are the differences:
The Predator V1 has head tracking and a 5.8 vrx built into it. The fov is 25 degrees.
The Dominator is modular. It has the same screen as the Predator, but the optics are different, making the image marginally bigger at 30 degrees but is apparently better designed for a clearer picture at more angles.
The Predator V2 removes the head tracking, but the overall package (from HK at least), with an improved camera and higher power vtx makes up for this (I never use head tracking, even though I've got it all set).
PS if anyone wants to send me a set of Dominators I'll provide all the info you want...
Hi Jim, if I were you, I'd forget about head tracking. I've got V1 Predators and a pan/tilt system all set up, but I NEVER use head tracking. Pretty much for the same reason you don't look out the side windows much when you drive a car. I have had it going while flying, but didn't move my head. My conclusion is that it's a novelty feature - something to show off to the people you might stick the goggles onto. It's just not practical for actual flying.
I don't think any Fatshark goggles have the headset battery voltage on the display. Not that endurance is an issue. I've had sessions where I've run my 5 2200s through my Bixler and I think I put 300Mah back into the headset battery. As for an OSD for the on-board system, that's an add-on that goes between your camera and video transmitter.
The cameras that come in Fatshark combos are poo. They are CMOS, of which I've never seen one that comes close to a CCD camera for FPV performance. You can put a wider lens on it, which improves the general amount of light that gets in and thus there's less to do for the camera to adjust to different light conditions, but CCD cameras are just so cheap. BMSWEB seems to be happy with the V2 CMOS camera with the wide angle lens, and he uses one of the best CCD cameras available, so it can't be too bad. If you're thinking about replacing a Fatshark camera with a CCD, note that they generally run on 12V rather than 5V. This means you have to adjust the wiring to power the CCD camera - it won't work with the 5V out from the video transmitter.
Head tracking can be added on to the V2 goggles. It's an expensive add-on though. I'd forget head tracking and just go with what seems to be a solid system in the V2 Predators.
I have seen the on-screen voltage display on youtube FPV videos (I'm not sure if they were Fat Shark though) and I presumed it was the voltage of the aircraft battery, not the camera battery. It must be handy to see the aircraft battery voltage remaing during flight.
I have relatively easy access to the Hobby King warehouse in Hong Kong and this package seems to be a handy all-in-one solution. I saw the BMSWEB comments and comparison on the cameras and am happy to go with that and possibly replace it with a CCD camera later on.
I take your comments on head-tracking on board. Presumably the addition of Wide Angle view in V2 is why they have done away with head tracking, is that right?
Yeah, the on-screen voltage is from the aircraft's flight battery. There's a huge array of on-screen displays available, and picking the right one for what functions you're after is hard. I'd suggest researching into those as well if you plan to fly more than a couple of hundred metres away.
The wide angle lens does two things. As well as giving you a wider view, it also lets more light through to the sensor. The latter function means a clearer picture in lower light and in theory a less dramatic brightness change for the processor to have to deal with.
If you're just starting FPV, make sure you have a spotter on hand until you feel as comfortable as if you were flying line of sight. Also, the stock antennas are complete garbage for 5.8Ghz systems and shouldn't be sold with these kits. I'd get yourself a set of the Spironet antennas too (just noticed they've dropped in price!).
I think the V2 is a great place to start. I'd have got it over the V1 if it was available when I was buying. Also keep researching FPV and learn about what systems go with what, how radiowaves work (at least the basics) and what to consider when setting up an aircraft for FPV. There's a lot to think about, a lot to learn, a lot of myths and unhelpful 'hints'. Test everything you get told (including what I tell you) for yourself, and you'll find you both enjoy this aspect of the hobby more and become confident in helping others.