Wizard Killer X220HV Mark IV - 6S Freestyle on a Budget

By Whiffles on Apr 17, 2019

126  23,634  210

This is the 4th installment to my popular "Wizard Killer" series, and is based on the popular Wizard X220HV 6S. As usual, the goal was to build a substantially better quad, yet come in below the retail price of the BNF kit. Here are some of the improvements:

  • Higher quality EMAX ECO 2306 1700kv motors
  • Foxeer's top-of-the-line Falkor mini camera
  • Eachine 25mw-1000mw Leaf VTX with microphone

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Tools

This isn't the most challenging build, but it does require soldering a number of wires. I counted at least 28 wires to various pads. I highly recommend a quality iron like the Hakko 888D and Kester 63/37 solder. Otherwise here is a comprehensive list of tools require to put this together.

  • Soldering iron
  • 2.0mm hex driver
  • Industrial Tweezers
  • Wire cutter/stripper
  • Scissors
  • Heat gun or lighter
  • Ruler and cutting mat
  • Multimeter

Additional Supplies

  • A variety of heat shrink tube sizes
  • Blue Loctite
  • Zip ties (small)
  • 63/37 leaded solder
  • Liquid soldering flux pen

Hardware

I used countersunk washers and flat top screws to attach the top plate, but these aren't necessary. I just used them to add a little color. The frame and motors include all the necessary screws and hardware.

Frame Assembly

The X220HV frame is a nice upgrade to the more traditional Martian II used on all my previous builds. The stack space has been reduced from 35mm to 20mm, and we now have mounts for two stacks. This does limit what stack you can use, but the Diatone Mamba just squeaks by at 19mm tall. It also features a "chin" which allows for mini cameras as well as micro cams.

Assembling the frame is very straightforward. The arms mount under the bottom plate with the screws pointed downward into the silver lock nuts. Don't tighten everything down until you've got all the arms in place because you may need to wiggle them a bit.

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Motors

While it's optional I like to sleeve my motor wires with 1/4" Para-Max. It's also a great way to add a little color to your build. Keep in mind that the traditional 550 Paracord is too narrow for all 3 motor wires.

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  1. Cut 4 pieces of cord to 7 cm lengths, remove the inner core and, with a lighter, melt the ends to prevent frays.
  2. Sleeve the motor wires and add a couple pieces of 12mm shrink tube to cover the ends.
  3. Screw the motors onto the arms using the included "For 4mm thick arms" screws and blue Loctite.
  4. Use the long screws included in the frame kit to mount the 4-in-1 ESC.
  5. Disassemble the Mamba stack and secure the bottom set of standoffs to the frame.
  6. Mount the 4-in-1 ESC and secure it with the next set of standoffs.
  7. Flux and tin each motor pad ensuring each is completely coated with a bubble of solder.
    • Solder with the middle standoffs in place because the solder will prevent you from screwing them on later.
  8. If you're right-handed start from the rightmost motor pad and solder all 6 wires from right to left.
    • If you're left handed start from the left.
    • Cut each wire to length as you go, not all at once.
    • Keep a flux pen handy because the middle pads are extremely close together and tend to bridge if you aren't careful.
  9. Position the shrink tube over the ends of the cord and melt it. You can use a heat gun to make quick work of this.

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Power Connector

The flight controller comes with everything you need. Just look under the instructions at the bottom of the container.

  1. Fill the XT60 wire wells with a bit of solder.
  2. Solder the red and black wires ensuring red is on the + side of the battery connector.
  3. Add shrink tube to cover the wire around the XT60 connector.
  4. Flux and add solder to the battery pads on the 4-in-1 ESC.
  5. Solder the battery leads at an angle toward the side so it's accessible from the top of the quad.
    • You'll need to cut one wire slightly shorter than the other to make this work.

There is a known issue with the X220HV BNF kit where the battery lead creates video noise being in such close proximity to VTX. It's much better to send the battery lead out the side.

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Binding the Receiver

Now that you've got power you can add the receiver and bind it. I used the FrSky XM+, but you'll need to choose a receiver that matches your radio. It's best to slide it under the rear of your 4-in-1 ESC. Just leave the bind button exposed to make it accessible for the future.

  1. Solder 3 wires to the 5v, GND and SBUS pads on the receiver.
    • The camera comes with lots of spare wire, so borrow some red, black and green from there.
  2. Add your flight controller to the stack and re-connect it to the 4-in-1 ESC with the included wire harness.
  3. With the receiver in position feed the wires under the 4-in-1 ESC and solder them into place on the flight controller.
  4. Bind your receiver
    • Be sure to double check that you don't have continuity between your main battery leads.
    • Add enough shrink tube to the receiver to protect it from shorts against the frame or 4-in-1 ESC.
    • Hold your receiver bind button and plug your main battery in. (It's helpful to clamp this button down with tweezers to free your hand)
    • Put your radio into bind mode and ensure you're bound.
  5. Now that you're bound you can tuck your receiver away under the stack.
  6. Attach small zip-ties to your rear arms and shrink tube the antennas to the zip ties.
  7. Secure your flight controller with the included nylon nuts.

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Beeper

This is entirely optional, but I decided to include it to match the stock X220HV. This particular beeper has an integrated lipo battery, so even if you eject your primary battery it'll still beep. Since the BAT- pad is on the far end of the flight controller you'll need to extend the wire to reach it. Again you can borrow some wire from the camera, and don't forget to cover the joint with shrink tube. After that you just need to solder the 5v and GND wires to a couple nearby pads.

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Video Transmitter

Once the beeper is mounted you can add two more standoffs to mount the VTX. You won't need the 5v output from the VTX so be sure to remove the purple wire. I decided to power the VTX straight from the battery. It's rated for up to 25v, so it can handle a 6S battery. The VCC and GND pads are conveniently located directly beside the VTX and the TX3 and VID pads are beside the USB. Just solder those four wires and the VTX is installed.

Unfortunately the VTX I used for this guide is no longer available. I've listed an alternative below in the part list.

Camera

Before you add the camera make sure the carbon fiber side-plates fit into their slots. I had to file the little tabs down a bit to get a good fit. Once you've ensured they fit you can screw them onto the camera using the included camera bracket to get the correct width. Make sure you've got the camera and the bracket right side up! Mount the camera onto the frame by sliding the tabs into the slots.

You don't need the purple wire, so remove it from the wire harness before plugging it in. Cut the red, black and yellow wires to length offering enough slack for a range of camera angles. Solder them to the nearby CAM, 5v, and GND pads on the flight controller.

At this point you can test your FPV feed and disable the camera OSD. It's redundant and the Betaflight OSD has a lot more features.

  1. Make sure the antenna is connected to your VTX.
  2. Plug the camera joystick into the camera.
  3. Plug a lipo battery into your rig and tune in to your FPV feed with your headset.
  4. Center press the camera joystick to bring up the menu.
  5. Select "Special Setting" and "Close" Name, Voltage and Timer.
  6. Return and Save.

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Capacitor

This is a really tight build so I originally left the capacitor out, but considering it's such a high voltage rig I came back and added it. Unfortunately there isn't space between the stacks, so you'll need to solder wires to the capacitor and place it in front of the flight controller. Just make sure the striped side of the capacitor is soldered to the negative power lead.

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Finishing Up

Now all you need to do is mount the top plate and add the finishing touches. Here are a few tips to help prevent damage during flight:

  • Zip-tie the main battery lead to the nearest standoff. That'll help prevent damage to your stack in the event of a battery ejection.
  • Zip-tie the motor wires to the arms so they don't get snagged by a tree branch.
  • Make sure the battery straps go under and over the top plate to prevent damage to the electronics.
    • I suggest 16x230mm battery straps for 6S batteries.
  • Add a sticky battery pad between the battery straps to prevent the battery from ejecting.
  • Add a sticky pad under the HD camera mount so it doesn't slide around.
  • The stock antenna might be hard to secure considering it's stiffness and placement, but if you use a different antenna be sure to secure it with zip-ties so it can't get into prop-strike range.

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Betaflight Configuration

If you don't already have them, you'll need to download Betaflight Configurator [Download] and the BLHeli Configurator [Download].

  1. First go to the Firmware Flasher and choose "FURYF4OSD" as well as the latest stable release of Betaflight.
  2. Click "Load Firmware [Online]" and then "Flash Firmware" to update your flight controller. Once complete, click "Connect"
  3. On the Ports tab
    • On UART1 click Serial RX for your receiver.
    • Set the UART3 Peripherals to "VTX (TBS Smart Audio)".
    • Click Save and Reboot
  4. On the Configuration tab
    • Under ESC/Motor Features select DSHOT600
    • If want to fly "props out" with reversed motors, select "Motor direction is reversed" below the illustration. (This is optional)
    • Under System configuration set PID loop frequency to 8 kHz.
    • Under Receiver choose your receiver mode. For the XM+ choose "Serial-based receiver" and "SBUS"
    • Under Arming set the Max arm angle to 180 (Only if you keep the accelerometer turned on)
    • Under Other Features enable: Airmode, OSD, Anti Gravity and Dynamic Filter
    • Under DSHOT Beacon Configuration enable the beacon
    • Click Save and Reboot

To complete the remaining steps you'll need to apply lipo power to your build:

  1. On the Receiver tab ensure your pitch, roll, throttle and yaw are being applied correctly. Adjust your transmitter and Channel Map as needed.
  2. On the Modes tab
    • Assign an Aux switch to arm and disarm your quad.
    • Assign another Aux switch to enable Horizon or Angle mode if you need them.
    • Assign the Beeper and "Flip over after crash" to a 3rd and/or 4th switch. I like to assign them both to a single 3 point toggle switch.
  3. On the Motors tab enable the motor test and apply a small amount power to check the rotation of each motor. Take note of any that need to be reversed.
  4. Disconnect from the Betaflight Configurator and open BLHeli Configurator
    • Connect and Read Settings
    • Flash all ESCs to the latest firmware available.
    • Reverse the motor direction of any motors that need it. (The numbers correspond to the same numbers in Betaflight)
    • Save and reconnect to Betaflight Configurator to test the motor direction.
  5. On the OSD tab
    • Check all of the features you want and arrange your OSD as desired.

And that's it! The default Failsafe settings are generally fine, but make sure they work by arming your quad, applying a small amount of throttle and turning off your transmitter. It should shut down after a short moment.

Challenges

I had an issue with my OSD not showing up. It turns out the Foxeer Falkor was set to PAL by default and I have all NTSC electronics. I had to switch it using the camera controller.

Maiden Flight

When installing your props make sure to pay attention to the rotation direction illustrated on the Configuration tab in Betaflight. If you are flying "props in" then the leading edges of each prop needs to rotate toward the front and rear of the quad. If you are flying "props out" then the leading edges need to rotate toward the sides of the quad. Make sure the lock nuts are tight, but they don't need to be extremely tight. Conduct your first hover test in a safe place where you won't damage anything or hurt yourself.

Photos

Part List

Frame

Eachine Wizard X220HV 220mm FPV Racing Frame Kit Carbon Fiber 5mm Arm (4 builds)
Banggood.com
$29.69

Flight Controller

MAMBA F405 Betaflight Flight Controller F40 40A 3-6S DSHOT600 FPV Racing Brushless ESC (55 builds)
Banggood.com
$42.99

Motors

4 x Emax ECO Series 2306 6S 1700KV 4S 2400KV Brushless Motor for RC Drone FPV Racing (79 builds)
Banggood.com
$63.96

Propellers

Gemfan Windancer 5043 5x4.3 5 Inch 3-Blade Propeller M5 2 CW & 2 CCW for RC Drone FPV Racing (21 builds)
Banggood.com
$3.94

FPV Camera

Upgraded Foxeer Falkor 1200TVL 1/3 CMOS Mini/Full Size FPV Camera 16:9/4:3 PAL/NTSC Switchable GWDR (86 builds)
Banggood.com
$38.90

FPV Transmitter

Speedy Bee VTX-DVR 5.8G 48CH 600mW VTX Built-in DVR Support Betaflight CMS Control/IRC Tramp/PIT Mode (4 builds)
Banggood.com
$17.99

Receiver

Frsky XM+ Micro D16 SBUS Full Range Mini Receiver Up to 16CH for RC FPV Racing Drone (1509 builds)
Banggood.com
$13.69

Batteries

GNB 6S1P 1100mAh 6S 130C 22.2V XT60 Plug LiPo Battery For RC Drone (6 builds)
Banggood.com
$37.81

Batteries

CNHL MiniStar 1250mAh 22.2V 6S 70C Lipo Battery XT60 Plug for RC Drone FPV Racing (26 builds)
Banggood.com
$32.54

Radio

FrSky Taranis X-Lite ACCST 2.4GHz Radio Transmitter with 18650 Battery Black Caps for RC Drone FPV Racing Muliti Rotor (8 builds)
Banggood.com
$125.99

Goggles

Eachine EV200D 1280*720 5.8G 72CH True Diversity FPV Goggles HD Port in 2D/3D Built-in DVR (25 builds)
Banggood.com
$269.90

3D Printed

GE-FPV GoPro Camera Mount 30 Degree Inclined Seat 35mm Mounting Base For Gopro 5/6/7 Camera FPV Racing Drone (2 builds)
Banggood.com
$10.15

HD Camera

Foxeer Box 2 4K 30Fps HD 155 Degree ND Filter FOVD SuperVison FPV Action Camera Support APP Micro HDMI Port (9 builds)
Banggood.com
$129.90

Hardware

Suleve™ M3CH4 M3 Carbon Steel Countersunk Hex Socket Screw 6-20mm Flat Head Hex Screw Metric 100pcs (5 builds)
Banggood.com
$4.07

Hardware

Aluminum Alloy M3 M4 Flat Head Countersunk Head Washer 5Pcs (3 builds)
Banggood.com
$2.61

Misc Parts

Eachine Wizard X220HV FPV Racing RC Drone Spare Part 110DB 5V BB Alarm Buzzer Module
Banggood.com
$9.19

Misc Parts

5 PCS iFlight Battery Strap 15*250mm For RC Drone FPV Racing Multi Rotor (3 builds)
Banggood.com
$5.11

Misc Parts

Silicone 2mm Thickness Non-slip Mat Battery Anti Skid Pad Battery Mat for RC Drone (19 builds)
Banggood.com
$1.46

Video Receiver

ImmersionRC RapidFIRE w/ Analog PLUS Goggle FPV Receiver Diversity Module (176 builds)
Banggood.com
$149.00

Tools

XIAOMI Wowstick 1F+ 64 In 1 Electric Screwdriver Cordless Lithium-ion Charge LED Power Screwdriver (20 builds)
Banggood.com
$29.90

Tools

Hakko FX888D-23BY Digital Soldering Station FX-888D FX-888 (blue & yellow) (32 builds)
Amazon.com
$104.95

Misc Supplies

Suleve™ M3NH2 M3 Nylon Screw Black Hex Screw Nut Nylon PCB Standoff Assortment Kit 260pcs (2 builds)
Banggood.com
$6.51

Misc Supplies

Kester 24-6337-8800 50 Activated Rosin Cored Wire Solder Roll, 245 No-Clean, 63/37 Alloy, 0.031" Diameter (14 builds)
Amazon.com
$18.95

Misc Supplies

Banggood.com (5 builds)
Banggood.com
See Site

Misc Supplies

PARACORD PLANET para-Max Paracord 1200 lb Tensile Strength - 10' 25' 50' & 100'
Amazon.com
See Site
Show stores (2)

Discussion

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Jonasツ︎   Nov 05, 2020  

range?

Whiffles   Nov 06, 2020 

It really depends on what radio you're using. With FrSky you can expect maybe a mile or so with no obstructions.

Kharliah   Aug 06, 2020  

Hi Whiffles,

I seem to have somehow lost 3 out of 4 of my ESC mounting screws (the ones that go from below the frame into the standoffs. What size screw are they? I can't find information from the frame kit nor the stack.

Cheers.

Austinmahnke   Jul 20, 2020  

hey im pretty much copying this aside from the vtx and reciever... just wondering what your pid tuning looks like. thanks for the guide btw :)

Whiffles   Jul 20, 2020 

Have you given it a test flight? You may not need to do anything to the PIDs if you feel like it's flying well.

Austinmahnke   Jul 21, 2020 

still waiting on a couple parts :/ , just figured id ask since i didnt see it mentioned.

Stijn_Servaas   Jul 19, 2020  

I'm planning to build a 4s version of this quad as my first build. However, since this is my first time I'm a bit intimidated by buying all the parts separately. I also came across a freestyle beginner drone bundle by Joshua Bardwell. How do these two quads compare?

Whiffles   Jul 19, 2020 
1

Have a look at some of my newer builds. I don't believe this VTX is available anymore and there are newer cameras and stacks as well. The motors are still good and the frame is just fine. What makes this hobby fun is mixing and matching the parts according to your taste. Put together a mockup here on the site with some parts you're considering and join our Facebook group for feedback.

ice tea green   May 06, 2020  

So im planning on building this but i maybe want to put 2207 2150 kv motors on it (or something in that range) because of this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGkmX-PDtRI&list=PLnotUcUiT-Ixc2_qVMzxO7nFrR0AUs-v3&index=31&t=0s) and then using a throttle curve. I want to do it because it can go faster but also slow down when i want. But i dont know if the higher kv might cause problems with this build. So are there any obvious reasons why is shouldn't do it?

Show 4 more comments
Whiffles   May 08, 2020 

That's a pretty high risk environment. I generally avoid flying over water as it could mean a total loss. If I were wind surfing I wouldn't want a 5" flying around me. They're pretty powerful little machines. You may want to consider a cinewhoop style build like this, but with little to no experience you'll have to expect losing it in the water. I'd start with a micro and practice with that first. There's a steep learning curve to piloting these well.

ice tea green   May 11, 2020 

This is a little of topic but i know that a drone can be 'waterproof' but has anyone tried to make something that makes the drone float if it crashes in water. I can't find anything online. I don't mind if you don't resond haha.

Whiffles   May 12, 2020 

I've seen some folks put pool noodles or something similar on their quad. Personally, I just avoid flying over water.

Somebody   Apr 04, 2020  

I have a problem with my ESC. Im using the same stack in my build. When I try the motor tests, only 3 of the 4 motors spin. Motor 4 is just dead, it doesn´t beep when I plug in the battery (I checked the vibrations and compared it to the other ones that worked, there were none). The ESC doesn´t get recognized in the BLHeli Configurator as well, I tried BLHeliSuite but even that didn´t work. I don´t have continuity between the main battery leads and the ESC looks fine, it doesn´t have a FET that is damaged, so that you can see it with your eyes. I also checked for continuity between the positive battery lead and the motor wires on the ESC and did this as well for the negative and I don´t have continuity. Joshua Bardwell suugested this for diagnosing a burnt FET. I´m pretty anoyed and confused at this point, as this is my first build. Does this just mean that I have to buy a new ESC becaus the one that I have is unfixable and dead or is it possible to fix this issue somehow? I would be really grateful for any help.

Show 9 more comments
Whiffles   Apr 04, 2020 

Just focus on the ESCs and motors. No need to enter all the values until you can figure this out.

Somebody   Apr 04, 2020 
1

Thank you so much for your help. The re-flashing did the trick.

Whiffles   Apr 04, 2020 

Awesome!

darraghcaseycol@gmail.com   Feb 16, 2020  
2

This was my first build and I'm very greatful for the level of detail you provided.
I had to use a few different parts due to availibility like the xing 1700kv motors, akk infinite mk2 vtx and the props but it flies great and has more than enough power for me. I got stuck with setting up the vtx but Joshua Bardwell has a good video for setting up the vtx tables and now everthing is working perfect besides a finicky rssi ouput but I'm sure its something I'll figure out soon too.
These builds are great for the hobby for fpv and looking forward to seeing many more from you.

Whiffles   Feb 16, 2020 
1

Awesome! Congrats on your first build!

Boghey   Apr 20, 2019  

Can you recommend a cheap 6s charger? I'm looking to buy a charger but all of the cheaper ones I'm looking at are 4s.

Would I be able to swap the 1700kv motors for the 2400kv motors and go with a 4s batter instead? What's the benefit of 6s over 4s?

Sorry if these are super basic questions, I'm looking to make this my first build, but I'm a total beginner!

Show 28 more comments
Boghey   May 26, 2019 

Yeah, I just sent them a message. Thanks for all of your help!

Quadzimoto   May 29, 2019 

Hey, man! Glad you're in, now you get to experience all the fun as well as all the head scratching confusion that we all endure.

It could be the motor, but sometimes bearings will get a little debris in them (sand is the worst) or the magnets will attract things, (solder flakes. etc) and make them and sound a little janky. I used to obsess over it but usually, its sorts itself out assuming the motor is all good and you remove visible junk from the magnets.

I just wanted to bring up a couple things that can cause jello that I didnt see mentioned....
First, bent (unbalanced) props, even one tiny wreck can lead to the prop causing oscillations unfortunately, especially if youre using less durable props that dont hold their shape well. Always good to check after crashes. The dynamic filtering in Beltaflight does help alot with this now though. Usually you can tell something is off because it sounds deeper and grunty(er?).

Second, wind. If its windy enough, you could have the cleanest, buttery, noise free quad and stong gusts will still cause jello.

It also helps to have an HD cam. It gives you something to compare against your board cam, and potentially help you isolate the issue faster. This is a stretch, but one time i troubleshot jello issues to the point where I replaced the entire quad... Come to find out, it was the "camera angle" setting in the version of BF I was using. I set it to zero, Jello gone. I shit you not.

meral   Feb 14, 2020 

I've had the same issue as Boghey, looked exactly like his footage. for me it was the camera. The PCB with the image sensor on it had a tiny bit of room within the camera case. If I shook it it at the right angle, it would click inside the case.

A dot of hot glue, blue tag, sticky tape or rubber will fix it. Or contact RunCam.

Dukes   Feb 05, 2020  

Hey @Whiffles, I am habing trouble with my motors and other components of the board heating up. Instead of using the 1700KV motors i used 2400KV motors and instead of the 1100mAH 130C battery that you recommended, i used a 1300mAH 75C battery still a 6S. Do you think that could be my issue or do you think its something else.

Whiffles   Feb 05, 2020 
1

You don't want to run 6S on 2400kv motors. You'll need 4S batteries. That's most likely the reason.

Dukes   Feb 06, 2020 

So I would have to lower my voltage to 14.8V to get a 4S correct? Or alternatively I could spend more money and get new motors right?

Whiffles   Feb 11, 2020 

It really depends on what your goals are. Do you want to fly 6S and only purchase 6S batteries or are you fine buying 4S batteries and sticking to those? It also depends on how many you've already purchased.

DrMacca   Feb 02, 2020  
1

Holy crap! This is an absolutely incredible build guide! Thanks for the crazy attention to detail and excellently explained steps! Wow. Much appreciated. 🙏

pilipala   Dec 29, 2019  

Thanks @Whiffles for this as I am trying to get myself into the hobby. I just finished building the whole thing and trying to flash the firmware. I managed to connect to the FC via BetaFlight, but unfortunately when I was trying to flash the firmware, I keep getting error - *No response from bootloader; programming FAILED

I used ImpulseRC Driver Fixer and it give me error when entering bootloader as well - *An error occurred while entering bootloader: Unexpected number of devices detected

Appreciate if I could get some help in rectifying the issue.

Thanks!

Whiffles   Dec 29, 2019 

Do you have anything else plugged into your computer? It sounds like it's finding a couple devices.

pilipala   Dec 29, 2019 

The other devices plugged into my computer is the keyboard and the mouse. It seems to be an issue with the bootloader?

Whiffles   Jan 05, 2020 

I'm sorry, I lost track of this thread. Were you able to get this figured out?

Kharliah   Sep 29, 2019  

I'm having some issues connecting to my PC. I've installed all of the drivers in Betaflight and the PC just isn't recognising the board. It did to begin with, with Windows telling me that the device was malfunctioning. After a PC reboot I get no indication anything has been plugged in. I've tried 3 different PC's now and still nothing at all. The lights on the FC are still lit up. I've put it into boot mode and all. Zadig doesn't recognize any device so I can't change the drivers etc.
Any suggestions? Could I have messed up and soldered something wrong?
Thanks.

Show 18 more comments
Kharliah   Nov 24, 2019 

I've sinced bumped it up to 1000mw (it was 25) and now I can go 50-100m away and have a good signal. I feel like it should be a lot better though. I'll try out a new VTX soon though to confirm.

Kharliah   Dec 24, 2019 

New vtx and same problem. Only difference in your build and mine is the capacitor. As I omitted mine since I was doing a 4s build. I will add mine soon to see if it cleans up the feed a bit.

Whiffles   Dec 24, 2019 

Hmm, are you sure you're on the exact same frequency? Sometimes the auto scan doesn't find the correct number. Compare the 4 digit number between your VTX and the headset.

jwpatmore   Dec 20, 2019  

Would you recommend this or a Cinewhoop for cinematic video?

Whiffles   Dec 20, 2019 

It really depends on whether or not you want to fly indoors. This is a freestyle drone so it's better suited for flips and tricks outdoors. It's very fast.

Ldr   Nov 23, 2019  

Hello there,
so i've gone through a bit of trouble, its my first selfbuild quad. But could figure everything out by myself, somehow... There is just this last thing. It's the VTX. I'm not to sure how to wire it correctly. I've got the Eachine nano vtx, other than that, everything is the same as yours. The esc changed a bit, but alright. Can you please help me with that? I have it on vcc and ground, and on Tx3 and video. i left the other 5v out and gnd free. It just shows a red light, no more... Is it wired correctly?

rrsst6   Oct 21, 2019  

Speedy Bee is also sold out, Any suggestions on a substitute? I have all the parts, but forgot to order this.

Whiffles   Oct 24, 2019 

I like the AKK Race VTX. It doesn't mount to 30.5mm standoffs but you can put some shrink tube around it and VHB it to the frame.

ArtiKz   Oct 22, 2019  

Hi , i try to get smartport on a softserial pin (PPM pin used as a softserial TX), but i have lot of troublee with thaat. Do you know how to have telemetry with r9 mm on this fc? I have gps on uart 6 , smartaudio on uart 3 et serial rx on uart 1
Thank you

Whiffles   Oct 24, 2019 

You don't want to use OSD? Personally, I never use telemetry. Unfortunately I'm not very familiar with configuring telem on an R9 receiver.

hasan2007   Oct 11, 2019  

Is the wiring the same for the speedybee and leaf?

Whiffles   Oct 14, 2019 

It's similar. Just make sure you've got the power in and the video and OSD control wired up the same way to the flight controller.

B_Swag   Oct 07, 2019  

Hi Wiffles-
Thanks for all of the support getting me up and running. Everything is in good working order except one minor issue- Since I toasted (2) of the eachine VTX's I had to get the new SpeedyBee one you recommended. I am not able to get the SmartAudio features to be able to change the band/channel from OSD. I've connected the IRC to TX3 and verified the connections are good. I've also set my UART3 to VTX (IRC Tramp) as the manual instructed. Still can't get it to communicate. Running BFLT 4.0.6

Show 1 more comment
B_Swag   Oct 07, 2019 

FEATURES -> VTX TR -> (the top show an asterix with a bunch of dashes with no values)

Any changes I make have no effect on the VTX. It does not seem to be communicating.

Whiffles   Oct 08, 2019 

Hmm, I think I've encountered this before but I can't recall exactly how I resolved it. It's usually a matter of using the wrong menu or choosing the wrong option in the ports tab. A more unlikely issue is that you've got the wrong Betaflight distribution flashed to your board. Are you running the Diatone Mamba MK2? Sorry I can't get back to you very quickly lately. I'm traveling.

B_Swag   Oct 10, 2019 

Yes- running Diatone Mamba MK2 - "302" board

No worries on the delay. I can still manually configure the VTX. Here is what I have from Betaflight:

Betaflight / FURYF4OSD (FY4O) 4.0.6 Sep 1 2019 / 00:40:20 (2a64051a2) MSP API: 1.41

Lonemi   Oct 05, 2019  

Which is the lenght of the Suleve M3CH4 hex screw 6-20mm ? And the Head Washer is M3 or M4 type ? Thank you !

Whiffles   Oct 07, 2019 

I recommend 10mm if you're going to use the countersunk washers, but since the standoffs are 20mm tall you may need to combine 8mm and 10mm as I'm not sure if a pair of 10mm screws will touch ends.

michael34465   Sep 13, 2019  

the vtx isnt available anymore. do ypu know of any others that could work this this build thats sold on banggood

Whiffles   Sep 13, 2019 

Here are a couple options I'd consider: Eachine Nano or Speedy Bee VTX-DVR

B_Swag   Aug 16, 2019  
1

@Whiffles - thanks again for this build - it was a lot of fun to put this together as my first build. Everything went together pretty smoothly, but I do have (2) remaining issues open with it.

1) Is there a way to get it to read current draw to display on the OSD?
2) Is there a way to get the VTX mic audio through my Fatshark Attitude v5? All I get is a loud distorted humming sound.

Show 2 more comments
Whiffles   Aug 19, 2019 

Oh no! Bummer about the VTX. It's really just a bad mic, so I kinda doubt it'll perform better. Let me know how it goes though.

B_Swag   Aug 24, 2019 
1

Everything worked after the new VTX was swapped in. It turns out the that even though the mic is super low quality and there is tons of noise on the feed, it is still functionable enough to hear the prop speed.

Successful test flight:

Whiffles   Aug 24, 2019 
1

Awesome! Yea, that mic is awful but it's better than nothing I guess.

Randol_8o8   Aug 15, 2019  

AUW with gopro and lipo?

Whiffles   Aug 15, 2019 

It's around 720g AUW.

B_Swag   Aug 11, 2019  

So I was in the middle of assembling this build when I realized the FC that I was working with was slightly different than the one used in this build. The link is sneakily redirecting you to the MK2 version of the flight controller. I haven't found a clean list of what the changes are so far, but they've obviously relocated and changed a few things on the board.

Whiffles   Aug 11, 2019 
1

It's not much different. You just need to check the pin layout. The main difference is it now offers a 9v pad which you can use to power your VTX. Either that or VCC directly from the battery should be fine.

HayTex   Aug 08, 2019  

Hey man, awesome post! I plan on building this and was just wondering if the xt60 connector is included with something else I purchase and also the capacitor?

Whiffles   Aug 08, 2019 

The XT60 and capacitor come with the stack.

maximus   Jul 02, 2019  

Hey Whiffles, do you recommend the new F7 FC + BLHeli32 ESC combo? Do you think it's worth the price difference? Or maybe I should put in some extra $ and get something like Holybro F7 FC + BLHeli32 ESC?

Show 2 more comments
maximus   Aug 03, 2019 

One more question, if I have a TBS XF Nano connected to UART6 and the rest is as described in this guide - do I still have a spare port for a GPS? If so which one?

Whiffles   Aug 03, 2019 

Since GPS needs both TX and RX you'll need to use UART6 for the GPS. Then you should be able to use UART1/SBUS for the TBS Nano.

maximus   Aug 03, 2019 
1

Cool, ordered GPS for now :) Thanks for the advice

Johnnieboy   Aug 01, 2019  

Thanks for the detailed guide, however just one question; what Capacitor are you using on this build?

Thanks :)

Whiffles   Aug 01, 2019 

I just used the capacitor that came with the flight controller.

kent83   Jun 21, 2019  

i just finishing mine with your recommend part but these screw cw for these 4 motor don't cause any issue with vibration because there are 2 screw which could get off because the rotate?

Show 11 more comments
kent83   Jun 27, 2019 

i ve substantially solve the probleme pushing my vtx to 100mw instead 25mw and did some clean weld and connect the ground of the camera to the ground of VTX. no bluescreen just the osd who come and leave one more issue to solve and thank for your time

Whiffles   Jun 27, 2019 

Great! I'm not sure why the OSD would flicker though. Make sure your camera, flight controller and headset all match on PAL or NTSC. Sometimes the camera is not set up to match your flight controller or headset.

kent83   Jun 28, 2019 

ok and thanks i check that

Scorch_FPV   Jun 17, 2019  

Awesome build! already ordered everything to make my own, just wondering if the frame comes with the rear standoffs included,does it? thanks a lot and keep it up!

Whiffles   Jun 17, 2019 
1

Do you mean the nylon standoffs for the rear stack? You may want to buy a box of nylon standoffs and nuts because you'll be 2 standoffs short for the VTX.

Scorch_FPV   Jun 17, 2019 
1

Yeah that was exaclty what I meant! Thank you so much!

CM17X   Jun 08, 2019  

Again, awesome build! Do you think a Cadxx turttle would fit on this? I wonder because if it fits on the Diatone R349 which is 3 inches, why not? Wonder if it's about the height or the lenght.

Whiffles   Jun 08, 2019 

It'll be really tight and you'll probably need to mount the board in the back with a long cable. I'm not sure if it'll work but it's plausible.

Clean Sheets   May 30, 2019  
1

Hey Whiffles, great build!! As many others have mentioned, this will likely be my first build. I have a Diatone GT R349 3" which I love but I would like to try a proper 5" now.

I have many hours on the simulator and I primarily fly freestyle. I would say my flying skill is intermediate to advanced, based on flight videos I've seen.

I'm curious what the best option for someone like me would be: 1700kv 6S or 2400kv 4S ?

Also, if I build it as 4S, would I be able to swap the motors out for 1700kv and run 6S on it at some point in the future?

Lastly, what capacity 4S would you recommend for this build if I choose to build it as a 4S?

Thanks again for sharing your builds and for any help you can provide!!!

Show 1 more comment
Clean Sheets   May 31, 2019 

Great info, I’ll give it a go on 4S!! As you suggested, if I feel the need to go 6S in the future I’ll build 6S from the ground up. Gives me an excuse to build another quad ;)

Any advice or tips on PID tuning this build on 4S?

Thanks again!! You have been tremendously helpful!

Whiffles   May 31, 2019 
1

Just use the stock PIDs and you'll be fine. It takes a lot of experience to even discern the need for PID tuning.

Clean Sheets   Jun 05, 2019 

Good to know, thanks again!!

granola   May 30, 2019  
1

If I build a 5" I'm thinking one money-saving measure would be to use a Runcam Split instead of having to shell out for a GoPro. Would it be easy to swap the Foxeer for a Split on this build?

Whiffles   May 30, 2019 
1

I'm not sure you'll have enough room. You'd have to put the Split board behind the main stack and run the long cable to the camera. I'm not sure if the cable is long enough. You'd have to exclude the beeper board to make room for it as well. Personally, I don't find the quality of the Split footage to be very good. You're probably better off buying an external cam like the soon to be released Runcam 5 or the Foxeer Box 2. Or if you want to use the Caddx Tarsier then you may want to consider a different frame.

granola   May 30, 2019 
2

Got it. Thanks for the reply! Sounds like the dream of the all-in-one HD camera is still too good to be true.

jrowe88   May 29, 2019  

Nice looking build! What is the sleeve you used to protect the ESC wires? Can you post link or specs?

HunterCustom   May 21, 2019  

What does the ESC support, BLHeli_32? or BLHeli_S

Whiffles   May 21, 2019 
1

This is BLHeli_S.

IuLee   May 17, 2019  

Hi. I am planning of building it as my forst build but i was thinking to go for the TBS Source One or Rotor Riot CL1 frame with 2400kv motors. Are there any drawbacks using this? Thanks

Whiffles   May 17, 2019 
1

You should be just fine, but those frames only offer 20mm standoff mounts in the back. You won't be able to use the buzzer and you may want to consider a different VTX if you want to mount it in the back. You can use this VTX, but you'll have to stack it above the FC. I think those frames supply 30mm standoffs so height shouldn't be an issue. You just won't have a very low profile build. The X220HV is 10mm shorter.

IuLee   May 17, 2019 

thanks a lot for your answear. i will think about my options.

Thomaat   May 20, 2019 

The TBS Source one is indeed a very tall build. But the durability is just way better, for your first build you should go for durability in my opinion.

moxfpv   Apr 26, 2019  

Did you end up getting video noise on throttle with the vtx direct to lipo? Also have you tried flying the 1700kv motors on 4s, what was the flight time like?

Show 6 more comments
moxfpv   May 08, 2019 

Thats awesome to hear, I had the Eachine TX805 at the practice race on Sunday, they confirmed that the 25mw was spot on so I was allowed to race, really wish manufacturers kept to what was listed. Since you put a falkor in your build, it includes a direct harness for the tbs unify, almost plug and play.

Whiffles   May 08, 2019 

I gotta have Betaflight OSD though, so I always wire through the flight controller.

Jodie Froster   May 14, 2019 

Moxfpv if you are running the cam directly off the power from your vTx, especially if your lines are during throttle changes (and 2x especially if your OSD flickers) you likely need to ground the cam directly to the FC. No need to remove the ground from the vTx to the cam, just add another one. If you are lucky you can just pull open a section of the insulation on the ground wire near a ground pad on your FC and solder it on, effectively making a direct ground shared between the cam, FC, and vTx all with one wire.

ArcherFPV   May 12, 2019  

awesome budget build! doesnt look to hard either even tho theres a bunch of wires to solder on. i really need to finish some of the builds ive been working on lol just need time to do it.

jraawrr   May 09, 2019  

Amazing value. Would love to see footage before I copy the build, got any yet?

Whiffles   May 09, 2019 

Working on a video right now! I'll have the maiden footage up soon.

moxfpv   May 07, 2019  

How did the maiden go?

Whiffles   May 07, 2019 

Hoping it take it out today!

Whiffles   May 07, 2019 

Just took it out and it flew great! I'm really happy with it.

Alpha   May 06, 2019  

caddx ratel VS foxeer falkor ?

Whiffles   May 06, 2019 
1

I'd probably go for the Ratel. The footage I've seen so far looks great.

FPVisioning   May 01, 2019  

Hello,
On my build the amperage, and battery mAh draw isn't working.
Any ideas?
Thanks

Whiffles   May 03, 2019 

You mean you don't see the mAh draw on your OSD? Did you change anything on the Battery tab in Betaflight?

FPVisioning   May 03, 2019 

Exactly. Yes, I changed the voltage ratio from 110 to 107, and I changed some setting in the CLI related to it also, from the default of 4,000 to 2700. I can't remember exactly what setting it was.

Whiffles   May 03, 2019 

I wonder if it could be a bad connection between the 4-in-1 and the FC. It's somewhat unlikely though. Maybe wiggle the connector a bit or check the pins to make sure they're all in place.

Alpha   Apr 22, 2019  

Hi, big bro iam back again after years to keep me updated and if possible resurrect my drone hobby. So with new age freestyle fpv droning I have few questions regarding it.

1) Can you suggest a budget fpv drone setup with 'Longer Flight Time' and portability? as I mostly use it to shoot freestyle videos with Gopro.
2) Good 'Flight Controller' that supports OSD, Battery percentage and if possible GPS/RTH.
3) I already own a Futaba 10j, how good it is for FPV? and can you sugget some compatible Rx for it?

Show 3 more comments
Alpha   Apr 26, 2019 

planning for 6S , 6 inch propeller cinematic gopro7 cruising drone which can also perform freestyle acrobatics and if possible failsafe and GPS RTH features.

Whiffles   Apr 26, 2019 

Sounds like a fun build! You'll need a larger frame than this for those props though.

Alpha   Apr 26, 2019 

yeah, came across this frame , keeping in mind the propellers should'nt come in gopro view

https://www.banggood.in/Martian-250-250mm-4mm-Arm-Thickness-Carbon-Fiber-Frame-Kit-w-PDB-For-FPV-Racing-p-1064323.html?rmmds=search&cur_warehouse=CN

what are your thoughts about this frame?
btw any good 6" bangood/clones?

(ps: i went across pro flyers frames like johnny fpv, reverb 6" , armattan 6", super g+ but they are too costly and few clones have no proper spares)

Mehul Shocker   Apr 25, 2019  

did the mamba stack catch fire or smoked for anybody??
is 6s good for beginner??

Whiffles   Apr 26, 2019 

I don't think 6S is necessary for a beginner. You'd be just fine on 4S and 2400kv motors and you'll save money on batteries.

7161mikew   Apr 22, 2019  

hi, i am planning on building this. i was wondering way the pricing shown above is so much less than on the website eg: the frame above is $ 28.55 as opposed to $40.62 on banggood. regards Mike

Whiffles   Apr 22, 2019 

What form of currency are you using on their website? The prices listed here are in USD. I see $28 on BG.

7161mikew   Apr 22, 2019 

hi, i feel abit silly now, its converting to Australian dollars ! thanks for your help. Mike

Clarkr   Apr 18, 2019  

Hey I just bought the Mamaba stack and it works but the motors are being held at very staggered speeds. It's really hard to explain but if you do a roll with my quad it doesn't roll smoothly and it's like the esc's are doing 15 short speed burst in a row. Can anyone help???

Show 1 more comment
Clarkr   Apr 18, 2019 

Im running 16.7 REV(newest), brand new DYS Wei, and yes I installed the capacitor. Also I have Betaflight 4.0 and it comes with all the Gyro Notch filters turned off and I turned on one and it smoothed it out but I will have to keep testing to keep a balance between smooth and hot motors.

Whiffles   Apr 18, 2019 

You really shouldn't need to tweak the notch filters. The stock settings should be fine. I wonder if you've just got a lot of vibrations from the motors. I'd try mounting your stack on vibration dampening standoffs. I know the Mamba already has some dampening built in, but maybe you need even more. Try mounting the 4-in-1 on these.

Clarkr   Apr 18, 2019 

I'll try stock again (and I do have some vibration standoffs) and hopefully that works:). Thanks!

vaderonice   Apr 17, 2019  

Your soldering is gorgeous. How'd it fly?

Whiffles   Apr 17, 2019 

Thank you! Still need to maiden it.

MakeitHappen   Apr 17, 2019  
1

Great write up. Thanks for putting this together. I booked marked your iFlight XL5 V3 - The Easiest Build I've ever Done, and this one caught my eye now. My one and only build was a 2.5 inch using Mamba mini stack. This looks like its easier to work with. May need to try it, I want to keep learning. Keep up the good work!

Whiffles   Apr 17, 2019 

The iFlight is definitely an easier build, but what makes this one special is the 6S support unlike the LDARC stack I used on the iFlight.

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