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Powering a camera from a 4S battery, Voltage Regulator? Step-down?

kah00na

Senior Member
#1
I have a quadcopter that I've been using for FPV. I have one of the Sony cameras mounted on the front. I have been using a separate 2S battery to power the camera and the FatShark 250mw VTX but I want to integrate it all into the power distribution board or the balance port so I only have to connect the one 4S battery and power everything with it. Since the camera only supports 12V, I don't know what I need to get it the 12V it needs. I'd guess pushing in 16.8 from the 4S battery wouldn't be good for it. Any ideas how I can set that up?
 
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bicyclemonkey

Flying Derp
Mentor
#2
This is what you need: The TBS Core

You can plug in any lipo up to 10s and it will supply a constant either 5v or 12v to the camera and VTx.

Only, $79, looks like they lowered the price, last I looked it was $100.
 

Epitaph

Ebil Filleh Pega-Bat ^.^
Mentor
#4
Can't look now because I'm on my teeny tiny phone, but Bruce from RCModelReviews did a "how to" video on adding a resistor to a cheap HK UBEC to change the output voltage to whatever you needed, with a list of what resistor to use for what voltage.

Another way would be to feed the camera off the balance port from 3 of the 4 cells, and you'll just have to remember to balance the battery properly on every charge. It's how many people successfully feed LED lighting on high power planes, and contrary to popular belief, it does not damage your battery in any way as long as none of the cells drop below 3.3V.
 
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#5
Hi, if you feel like building your own regulator and filter you could go with the one David made and uses on his tricopter.

koppling-2.png

This text is from Rcexplorer.se
"- L1 is a 1mH coil
- C1 is a low ESR 22uF capacitor
These two components make the LC filter and is there to remove any noise generated by the ESC’s or anything else hooked up to the main power-leads.

- T1 is the LM2940-12
- C2 is a 0.47uF Tantalum capacitor recommended to use in the LM2940 data sheet.
- C3 is the capacitor that needs to be 22uF or bigger with a ESR between 0.04 and 5 ohm"


I have made and been using this one with good result. The first one however the guy in the electronics store sold me a axial coil that had the right spec but had so thin wire that it got hot and made glitches in the video. After changing to a radial torrid coil it works really well.

Remember to put a heatsink on the transistor as it will get pretty hot when sitting on the ground without airflow.
This regulator/filter really cleans up the power to your FPV system.
If you want more info go to http://rcexplorer.se/projects/2012/07/the-tricopter-v2-6hv/

The parts for this here in Sweden cost me about $5 and some time soldering.

Good luck
 

Cyberdactyl

Misfit Multirotor Monkey
#6
Is there a cheaper solution? I've been looking BECs like this 12V 4.5A UBEC 2-5S Lipoly. Would this not work? Of course it wouldn't have the 2S battery backup but I can deal with that.
Yes that will work. The video may not be as clean as David W's solution, but with the included ferrite ring, it should be close to the LM2940-12 build. As was said, keep everything cool. I would suggest cutting a window in the shrink of the UBEC and mounting it close to the thrust column, but NOT in it (you should know my anal retentive attitude about that :rolleyes: ). I would also heat sink the video Tx if it gets warm (>110F). Keeping heat down always helps reduce noise. . .

FSTX3.jpg

tx.jpg