How to deeply understand FC/ESC FPV Stack
FPV (First Person View) flying has become a thrilling and popular hobby for drone enthusiasts. It allows pilots to experience the excitement of soaring through the skies from the perspective of their quadcopters. To enhance this exhilarating experience, drone enthusiasts are constantly seeking ways to upgrade their equipment. One popular upgrade is replacing the FPV stack, which includes the flight controller and electronic speed controller (ESC). In this article, we will explore the process of replacing a Diatone Mamba FPV stack with a Neutron RC FPV stack, highlighting the benefits and considerations for a seamless and improved flying experience.
Understanding FPV Stack
Before delving into the upgrade process, let’s understand what an FPV stack is and why it is crucial to the performance of a drone. An FPV stack is a combination of electronic components that serve as the brain and power center of a quadcopter. It typically consists of a flight controller, ESC, and sometimes a video transmitter (VTX) and receiver (RX). These components work in tandem to control the drone’s flight, receive video feeds, and manage power distribution.
The Diatone Mamba FPV Stack
The Diatone Mamba FPV stack is known for its reliability and performance. It has gained popularity among drone enthusiasts for its ease of use and seamless integration into various frame designs. With robust features and an efficient layout, the Mamba stack has been a go-to choice for many FPV enthusiasts looking to build or upgrade their drones.
The Neutron RC FPV Stack
The Neutron RC FPV stack is a relatively newer entrant into the market. Engineered with advanced technology and cutting-edge design, the Neutron RC stack boasts enhanced performance, improved power management, and customizable features. Designed to deliver a top-notch FPV experience, it has gained traction among seasoned pilots who crave precision and flexibility in their flights.
The Benefits of Upgrading to the Neutron RC FPV Stack
- Improved Performance: The Neutron RC FPV stack offers higher processing power and improved firmware, leading to more responsive flight controls. This translates to smoother flights and better maneuverability, allowing pilots to execute complex aerial stunts with ease.
- Enhanced Power Management: The Neutron RC stack comes equipped with efficient voltage regulators, ensuring optimal power distribution and reducing the risk of voltage spikes or drops. This results in improved motor efficiency and reduced heat generation, prolonging the life of your motors and electronic components.
- Customization Options: Unlike some other FPV stacks, the Neutron RC stack offers extensive customization options through its user-friendly software interface. Pilots can tailor flight parameters, PID settings, and other variables to suit their flying style, making it a versatile choice for both beginners and experienced fliers.
- Video Transmission Quality: The Neutron RC stack’s integrated video transmitter provides better video transmission quality, reducing the chances of signal dropout or interference. This ensures a clearer and more immersive FPV experience for the pilot.
- Compact and Lightweight Design: The Neutron RC stack is designed to be compact and lightweight, making it ideal for racing drones and freestyle quadcopters. The reduced weight contributes to improved agility and overall flight performance.
Considerations Before Upgrading
- Compatibility: Before proceeding with the upgrade, ensure that the Neutron RC FPV stack is compatible with your existing drone frame and other components. Check the stack’s size and mounting holes to ensure a seamless fit.
- Wiring and Soldering: Upgrading an FPV stack requires careful attention to wiring and soldering. Double-check the pinout diagrams and instructions provided with the new stack to avoid potential issues during installation.
- Firmware and Configuration: Familiarize yourself with the Neutron RC stack’s firmware and configuration software. Be prepared to transfer your existing flight settings or configure the new stack to match your preferred flying style.
- Budget: While the benefits of upgrading are significant, consider your budget for the new FPV stack. Research the market for the best deals and discounts to make a cost-effective purchase.
Desoldering a Mamba flight stack, or any electronic component, requires patience, precision, and the right tools
What tools need to prepare before installing fpv stack?
Tools and Materials:
- Soldering iron with adjustable temperature settings
- Desoldering pump (solder sucker) or desoldering wick
- Isopropyl alcohol and cotton swabs (to clean the PCB after desoldering)
- Tweezers or pliers (to remove any components if needed)
Step 1: Prepare Your Workspace
Clear a clean and well-lit area to work on your drone. Gather all the necessary tools and materials, including the replacement flight stack (if applicable). Put on your safety goggles to protect your eyes during the desoldering process.
Step 2: Heat Up the Soldering Iron
Turn on your soldering iron and set it to the appropriate temperature for the solder used in your Mamba flight stack. Typically, a temperature between 350°C to 400°C (660°F to 750°F) works well for most solder types.
Step 3: Apply Flux
Applying a small amount of flux to the solder joints can improve the solder flow and make desoldering easier. However, be sure to clean off any excess flux after desoldering to avoid any potential issues later.
Step 4: Desoldering Using a Desoldering Pump
Hold the desoldering pump in one hand and the soldering iron in the other. Heat up the solder joint by touching the tip of the soldering iron to the joint. Once the solder becomes liquid, quickly position the desoldering pump’s nozzle over the joint and press the plunger to create a vacuum. The pump will suck up the molten solder, clearing the hole.
Step 5: Desoldering Using a Desoldering Wick
If you don’t have a desoldering pump, you can use desoldering wick (also known as solder wick). Place the wick over the solder joint and apply the heated soldering iron to the wick. The wick will absorb the melted solder.
Step 6: Remove the Flight Stack
Once you have desoldered all the connections between the flight stack and the drone’s frame, gently lift the flight stack using tweezers or pliers. Be careful not to damage any surrounding components or the printed circuit board (PCB).
Step 7: Clean the PCB
After removing the flight stack, inspect the PCB for any remaining solder or debris. Use isopropyl alcohol and cotton swabs to clean the pads thoroughly. Ensure there is no short circuit between the solder pads.
How to install to fpv stack the frame and connect with other fpv drone kits
Wiring up a 4-in-1 ESC (Electronic Speed Controller) is a crucial step in building a quadcopter or any multirotor drone. A 4-in-1 ESC combines four individual ESCs into a single package, simplifying the wiring process and saving space on the drone’s frame
Step 1: Mount the 4-in-1 ESC
First, mount the 4-in-1 ESC on your drone’s frame. Most frames have designated mounting holes for the ESC, but if yours doesn’t, use double-sided tape or adhesive to secure the ESC to a flat surface on the frame. Ensure the ESC is placed securely and away from any moving parts, like the propellers.
Step 2: Connect Motor Wires
The 4-in-1 ESC will have four sets of motor pads labeled M1, M2, M3, and M4. Connect the three motor wires from each motor to the corresponding pads on the ESC. coding for motor wires is as follows:
- Motor 1 (M1):
- Motor 2 (M2):
- Motor 3 (M3):
- Motor 4 (M4):
Ensure that the motor wires are securely soldered and insulated to prevent any short circuits.
Step 3: Connect Battery Wires:
Next, locate the battery pads on the 4-in-1 ESC, usually labeled BAT or B+. Solder the positive (+) and negative (-) wires from your drone’s battery connector to these pads. Ensure a solid and secure connection, and consider using heat shrink tubing to insulate the soldered connections.
Adding the flight controller
Step 1: Mount the Flight Controller
Securely mount the Neutron RC flight controller on your drone’s frame using mounting screws or standoffs. Ensure the orientation of the flight controller is correct (usually with the USB port facing forward) to match the direction of the drone’s movements.
Step 2: Connect the 4-in-1 ESC (if applicable)
If you’re using a 4-in-1 ESC, follow the instructions provided with the ESC to connect the motor wires to the designated pads on the flight controller. Typically, the motor outputs on the flight controller will be labeled M1, M2, M3, and M4, and you’ll connect the motor wires in the same order.
Step 3: Connect the Receiver
If your Neutron RC flight controller does not have an integrated receiver, connect your external receiver to the flight controller using the appropriate connections (usually SBUS, iBUS, or PPM). Refer to the flight controller’s manual for specific details on receiver connections.
Step 4: Connection to Other Components
If you have additional components like an FPV camera, video transmitter (VTX), and OSD (On-Screen Display), connect them to the appropriate pads on the flight controller following the instructions provided with these components. The camera normally goes to a 5v pad cam/vidin and ground, vtx has vtx/vid in pad, 5vpad, graond,
Step 5: Configure the Flight Controller
Once everything is wired up, connect your drone to a computer using a USB cable and open the Betaflight configurator software (or any other relevant software if the flight controller requires different firmware). Configure the flight controller, calibrate the ESCs, and set up any necessary settings, such as motor direction, receiver inputs, and PID tuning.
Step 6: Test and Calibrate: After configuring the flight controller, perform some basic tests to ensure all motors spin correctly and respond to the transmitter inputs. Make sure the drone is stable and reacts as expected to control inputs.
Wiring up a Neutron RC flight controller, or any flight controller, is a fundamental step in building a drone. Always refer to the specific flight controller’s manual and follow any provid ed instructions to ensure a successful and safe build. If you encounter any issues during the process, seek help from experienced drone builders or online communities to troubleshoot and resolve the problem.