Long(ish) range TinyHawk Freestyle+

By PickleSlice on Apr 04, 2020

12  487  16

As I sit at home slowly going crazy with my wife and three kids during the COVID-19 quarantine, I wanted to get something I could fly around the neighborhood and not bother anyone. Since I was already invested into a TinyHawk 2 with over 20 batteries, and because it gets stellar reviews everywhere, I picked up an Emax TinyHawk Freestyle from GetFPV.com.

Out of the box it is great! The stock tune flies beautifully so you may not even care to tune, but I've been working on a BTFL 4.1 tune using RPM filtering and JESC 48khz firmware. Here is the CLI dump if anyone wants to give it a try. YAW is a little twitchy, so you may want to lower that a smidge.

My biggest complaint is the 25mw VTX, which I was aware of before I bought it. I couldn't even circle the house before I totally lost video. As it gets kinda boring flipping around in the back yard, and since I'm not really taking my 5 inch out right now, I stole the FrSky R-XSR out of it, bought a TBS Unify Pro32 Nano and VTX sled from tinysleds.com, and stole the Runcam Nano 2 (just stuck it in with double sided foam tape until I got a proper mount) out of my spare Tinyhawk 2, then threw it all on the Freestyle.
Now I know it's not long range in the typical sense (pretty much the same as my five inch), but it's long range for a micro. What I love most is that it feels very similar to my bigger quad, but this thing doesn't sound like a pissed off banshee flying through the sky...its actually almost unnoticeable with the stock props. This allows me to get my fix for flying acro without bothering anyone. Even if it falls out of the sky, if it does do any damage, it would be minimal at the worst.

Hopefully this'll help me stop fiending like a crackhead looking for a hit, at least for a while.

Tinyhawk Freestyle+
Betaflight 4.1.5 with RPM filtering
JESC 48hz firmware
If you want to give my settings a try, use the "MATEKF411RX (MTKS)" target, not the Legacy. Once you flash the firmware, allow the defaults to be flashed and then paste the diff all below into the CLI.

CLI diff all - https://pastebin.com/raw/CYZgn3w4 I think it flies very well, but as I make changes, I'll try to update this post with the new settings.

The Tinysled sled is very good quality and made this build a lot easier. I only mounted the VTX to it, as the FrSky X-XSR does not have the proper pinout for it. The X-XSR is mounted using double sided sticky tape,and I used small amounts of high temp hot glue to secure the wires and VTX antenna.

Alt Tag

Alt Tag

I originally ran the RX antenna's from the two front arms going backwards, but they would occasionally get in the way of the props during certain situations. Seen below.

Alt Tag

Alt Tag

Here is the new way I ran them and they seem to be totally out of the way now.
Alt Tag

Alt Tag

Then, just use a zip tie and heatshrink to mount the VTX antenna, button it all up, and go for a rip.

With the HQProp T65 bi blade props, I'm getting about 6 minutes with 450mah batteries, and 7 minutes on 550mah batteries. It's been overcast and windy the last few days, so these numbers may go up once the wind stops.

Flight time with 450mah batteries and HQProp T65 bi-blades
Alt Tag

Flight time with 550mah batteries and HQProp T65 bi-blades
Alt Tag

BTFL 4.1.5, JESC 48khz firmware and RPM filter

In this video, the quad is on BTFL 4.0.6 with stock everything, and the RunCam Nano 2 secured between the top and bottom plate with double sided foam tape.

In this video, the quad is on BTFL 4.1.5, JESC 48khz firmware and RPM filter, also my own custom PIDS and rates. The camera has a proper TPU mount, and the video quality improved significantly.



Sign in to comment

DoubleJackOnTap   Apr 05, 2020  

Did you notice a performance difference with the added weight?  I have the Nano 2 and XM+ receiver in mine and it seemed to be less responsive.  But it may be in my head.  I fried my FC when I tried to add a separate VTX, so I replaced the board and left the VTX off.   I may try again after seeing yours.

Show 6 more comments
PickleSlice   Apr 07, 2020 

I just updated the cli dump with a slightly different tune, and using BTFL 4.1.5. Added brief instructions on how I installed the firmware as well.

PickleSlice   Apr 10, 2020 

Did you have a chance to try out my tune? Curious as to what others think about it.

DoubleJackOnTap   Apr 11, 2020 

Sorry, I haven't tried it yet.  I was short a XM receiver for a new build so I temporarily robbed it out of my TH.  I will definitely try it out soon.

Yinka_Brasil   Apr 07, 2020  

Just wondering how you're getting that camera to stay in place without tpu mounts? And I can say from experience that the XM+ would give you a lot more range

Show 2 more comments
PickleSlice   Apr 08, 2020 

I was curious after what you said and got a rough estimate on the distance using Google maps. In the second video I posted, it looks like I went 1,715.09ft, or just a hair over half a kilometer, according to Google. I'm pretty happy with that to be honest, I start to lose my nerve at that point, as I don't have either a buzzer installed, or any sort of GPS failsafe.

I originally bought this little guy just to do acro and freestyle around the house during this quarantine, and then got a hair up my ass and I'm gonna end up losing it, I know it, lol.

Yinka_Brasil   Apr 09, 2020 

Dude , I feel you in terms of getting worried, the further out you go. And you're right - anything over 500 meters is overkill for this little quad. I only do long range in open, flat areas (with no bushes), where I know I can simply walk the distance, and not worry about losing or someone walking off with it. Then again, where's the fun in that......I've lost 3 brand new quads being a stupid daredevil....Never again! I ALWAYS play it safe now. Oh, and if you're fliying around the house, make sure there's no water in the kitchen sink, and all toilet bowls are covered! LOL!

PickleSlice   Apr 09, 2020 

I almost learned that the hard way just a few days ago, with my Mobula 6. I just barely missed the dog bowl!

Guides & Reviews

27 2,211  29
24 days ago

This guide will walk you through the process of building your first FPV quad. The goal with this design was to build a low-cost, lightweight quad, yet powerful enough to safely carry a GoPro in close proximity areas. I chose these parts to minimize the amount of soldering at no cost to the quality. A typical build requires around 30 solders while this only needs 25. It's not a huge difference, but..

Read more
25 6,860  24
Nov 30, 2019

In late 2019 DJI made inroads into the FPV scene with their remarkable low-latency digital system. It gave us a 720p video feed with latency on-par with the status quo, analog video. Traditionally we've used analog video systems for low-latency video, but the video quality is far from ideal. It's a trade-off we've been willing to accept for the control. Now we've got the best of both worlds and what..

Read more