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Camera Drones & Motorcycles

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by RideFreak, Mar 14, 2018.

  1. Levvy

    Levvy Been here awhile

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    Chris is correct, you only need a single card. The one Todd linked is a bit overkill (we can only push up to 100Mb/s) but will work just fine and be somewhat future proofed for next gen hardware.
    RideFreak likes this.
  2. new2adv

    new2adv Converting gas into wheelies since 1974

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    Thanks for the run-down on your Klim pack RideFreak! Looks like a nice setup.

    Did you get the Klim that includes the hydration pack? Couldn't tell from the pictures.
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  3. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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  4. new2adv

    new2adv Converting gas into wheelies since 1974

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    Gotcha. Reason I asked is because I looked up the pack on one of our Canadian mail order sites and two models came up, one with and one without water pack. The water pack adds $45 CAD (about $35 USD) to the price, pretty typical for Klim I guess. Your Amazon deal at $19 a pair is a pretty good one!
  5. MotoChron

    MotoChron Got Dirt?!

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    Damn, I gotta stop reading this thread. I can't afford another drone! My Stakker will barely fit in my Klim backpack. I mean I can make it work, but the straps are gonna rip one of these days.
    regnaDkciN and RideFreak like this.
  6. applicant_255

    applicant_255 Misshapen Shaved Ape

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    Yeah, you’re supposed to be able to take control of the drone when doing autonomous or preprogrammed flights, and always have sight of the drone yourself or with a spotter you’re in contact with. You can’t drive and fly at the same time at all.

    Passenger needs to fly the drone, basically.

    Really , beyond just being explictly stated in the laws, it results in better shots and fewer chances of losing the drone, or colliding with something you don’t expect. Look at the tracking modes more like assists that keep your subject in the shot and your drone along the path you want to follow, with you adjusting to get the exact shot you want.

    Rules are pretty specific that you should always be watching the drone itself, not flying through the drones video feed either, unless your qualified spotter is watching the drone.
  7. brianpc

    brianpc Long timer Supporter

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    BDO likes this.
  8. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    I flew the SD 2 yesterday for 3 batteries worth of flying. It was in our typical desert area so not many trees but I purposely flew it low so as to interact with what was there. Our desert has lots of pinion trees (more like huge bushes) that range from about 6' to 30' tall. They're evergreen so it's easy for the drone to see them. As you guys know the desert is ideal for this kind of filming but that's what I have available in December. The drone is always attempting to make the best decision on how to avoid an obsticle and still keep the subject in the picture. For the Pinions this meant flying over them, it skimmed the tops gracefully to where you don't realize it's avoiding something till it passes by. I purposely spread out the 3 flights to try and cover some different conditions as much as I could out there. Here's some of my observations.

    The tracking is excellent, there's nothing you can buy right now that compares to this drone for following a subject up and down hills, around/over trees and on curvy trails. The avoidance is so good that after you get over the initial feeling that you need to know where your $1000 investment is at you really don't worry about it and just ride. For me that's a game changer, I can focus on not trying to crash or look stupid on film :rayof

    The 3 batteries were a total of about 50 min of flying, it never once lost us that entire time. The 22 min battery duration is based on a more reasonable speed but that's not how we roll :D 95% of the flights were in the upper half of the drone's speed capability so the battery life didn't surprise me. For most of this I positioned the drone in front of the subject because this was all relatively new to me and I wanted to observe how it handled navigating the things I threw at it. I've flown the SD2 before so I was familiar with it's operation but that wasn't my drone and I didn't want to risk crashing it. When you position the drone in front and you're running at a good clip there will be some video where it's pointing the camera straight down at the subject. Because of that there will be some flipping around of the scene because it's right at the apex of deciding how it want's to orient the gimbal, my other drone did the same thing in similar situations. Now that I know that I'll position the drone a little further out in front for those shots. Despite that, those shots still make for some really cool close up video of the subject. Speaking of close up, this drone will capture every move you make in crisp detail so if you look awkward it'll definitely catch that but it also catches the cool moves you'd want to highlight. The video looks like there's a camera crew 8' above you.

    The only issue I had was this; there was two of us riding close together, both on orange KTMs so we looked very similar to the recognition software. Twice when the drone had to pass behind a tree and momentarily lost sight of the subject it switched to the other rider. We passed behind many trees over the course of the ride but it only had this issue twice. Had we been more spread out those two times I have no doubt this wouldn't have been a problem. Personally I didn't mind it that much, it still made for great video and it makes my buddies happy :-).

    There was one time when I purposely rode down a narrow slot canyon with bushes hanging in to the path of the drone, I have no doubt it filmed it as well or better than a human could have sitting off to the side with a controller. Unfortunately I wasn't as smooth as I wanted to be and it caught that nicely. I didn't use my artistic license and edit it out, seeing it in full detail was more important :thumb

    In the video I showed hand launching and recovery, it's super easy and the drone lifts off and lands so controlled that the spinning props aren't an issue. You want to stop the tracking, walk over and stand below the drone then tell it to land, stick out your hand and that's it. I used the beacon but I also connected the app to the beacon, not only does that increase the range out to a mile, it allows for full app control like RTH etc, it logs the drone's last known position should anything happen, that's especially important in a situation like I was using it where you don't have eyes on it all the time. It's not difficult to out accelerate the drone on a dirt bike and in that situation it will ether fall back or go from in front to flying directly overhead. When it falls behind it takes a few seconds and the drone will spin up to full speed to get back in position, it does this pretty well. If you're ripping on the bike I have no doubt you could loose the SD2 behind you but I didn't feel like I had to lay off on the speed during the ride, I just rode slightly slower and was able to be more controlled in my riding. The biggest thing is to ramp up your speed smoothly and it will stay in the intended position. I've read some reviews where the tester didn't like the fact that the drone is making many of the decisions on where it wants to be in relation to the subject. I didn't feel like that was an issue in my testing, it will swing from side to side when tracking a subject on a curvy trail, especially if it's in front of you. As smart as it's intelligence is, it cannot anticipate when the subject will suddenly turn and head in a different direction. Despite that it handles those situations gracefully and IMO with little or no adverse footage.

    I filmed the entire day in 4K/60 and the video you'll see is untouched. I did edit the content like cut out sections that were repetitious so as not to loose the viewer's interest. I also highlighted some of the interesting areas a little but basically the video is straight off the camera for what matters, color and resolution. I do have ND filters coming and the desert filming could benefit from a filter. I was able to fit 3 batteries worth of filming, almost an hour on one 126G micro Sd card. I used a Scandisk Ultra UHS-3 card with no issues.

    Another thing I wanted to add for those of you who may consider using the klim backpack setup; for this ride I had a front tube, pump, tire irons, tools, some food, 2L of water the SD2 and 3 batteries and it all fit into the pack nicely. It was a little heavy but for being able to take everything needed along I was ok with that, getting the drone out was quick. The I attached the beacon the the BP's chest straps and when not using it the attachment provided enough slack to put it in the zippered pocket, when I was using it the same attachment point allowed for the beacon to be slid down into a small mesh pocket on the front of the backpack strap, almost like it was put there for that reason. The beacon was easy to pull out quickly and if you forget to put it back in the pocket like I did it's still attached by the strap I made for it.

    The most recent software update added an audible warning when the drone's battery is low but I only heard it once when I was stopped to land the drone, on the bike it's not really loud enough. The battery life indication is really small lettering so you have to stop to check battery life, at least I did.

    Overall I'd estimate 95% of the footage was usable, the majority of what wasn't usable was due to my positioning the drone too close for the speeds we were riding. There's a few times where it's getting back in position which takes a few seconds, we never had to stop for that, it always got back into position quickly and there was probably 3 times that occurred in 50 min of flying.

    When I started this thread a year an a half ago I never imagined we'd have this capability.

    Stay tuned, the video is uploading now and I'll post it once it finishes processing.
    BDO, Smackit, Photowriter and 2 others like this.
  9. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    As promised


    I recompiled my first version of this video thinking it was not upgrading to 4K because of an issue at my end, then I shortened the video from 25min to 15 and recompiled with different settings. Eventually the latest version came up at 4K, turns out it was no fault of mine. The new compilation settings are slightly different than what I normally use so the video looks slightly washed out.
    BillUA and BigWally like this.
  10. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    Here's the second part of the ride, I went to a different area to switch up the obstacles a little, it's all desert so I can't change it much. Looking at this video I come to the conclusion that the avoidance will evaluate the area and in this case (lots of small trees/bushes) it flies over them, going around would cause it to loose visual lock and I think that's a priority for it. What I like is it flies over them smoothly and very close to their tops so it's not typically going way up in the air.

    SDR82, BillUA, BigWally and 1 other person like this.
  11. new2adv

    new2adv Converting gas into wheelies since 1974

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    What an AMAZING drone! Skydio are going to sell boat loads of that thing. Thanks for posting Chris!
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  12. Todd157k

    Todd157k Long timer Supporter

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    Great videos Chris! I'll be right there with you.. I only need 3 things;
    1. My R2.. paid for but not shipped yet. (almost a week after placing the order)
    2. Primo riding area/dirt
    3. Your talent. :lol2
    RideFreak likes this.
  13. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    1. Hopefully soon
    2. After you're familiar with the SD2 your riding mindset will include thoughts like; hey this would be a cool place to take some drone video.
    3. Practice :-)
    Todd157k likes this.
  14. RWJorg

    RWJorg Been here awhile

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    What's the S2 limitations on altitude? More specifically - say you're riding UP a mountain. The DJI line of drones will stop at 1640 ft high from the home location. Will the S2 continue to climb as you are and keep the specified distance from the ground? From the beacon?
  15. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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  16. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    This is based on the specs and what I read but as far as I know it will keep flying straight up the mountain if you're going along with the controller but there's a ceiling @ 15K'. Other than that it's limitation is based on how far it's from the controller and that's going to be 1640', I think right now it's limited to 400' above the controller which is supposed to change with a software update.
  17. SDR82

    SDR82 Adventurer

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    Stunning footage. eat that DJI.
  18. Todd157k

    Todd157k Long timer Supporter

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    Competition drives innovation. Let's face it, until DJI came along, everything else was just 'toys'.
  19. Todd157k

    Todd157k Long timer Supporter

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    4 of them on ebay now. Sheez.. no wonder it's taking so long to get them. These bozos hammered the keyboard to get them and make some money.
  20. brianpc

    brianpc Long timer Supporter

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    Got my "Complete your order" email today and placed my order. Got a lot of the accessories, like RideFreak did (controller, batteries, beacon, 2 batt charger, filters, props). It's not for sale and not going on ebay, sorry. :D
    RideFreak and Todd157k like this.