Posts Tagged ‘Photography’

Product Review – Foxtech Glyder 600 PNP version with Zero UAV YS-X6

January 13, 2013

If you are into Aerial photography/ videography and are looking for a decent platform which can hold and carry your camera – well, read on…

On October 2012, Foxtech has released a new quadcopter frame – which design is similar to the concept of Ecilop by Aleksey. With Foxtech being (really?) the good guy Greg, they claimed that they obtained permission and patent agreement with Ecilop designer for their Glyder 600 frame design which is based on the original concept.

So an RC Group member emailed Ecilop team to ask about this. And they responded with:

We have a condition that if any company uses any technology based on our frame we want them to show Aleksey Zaitsevsky as an inventor. And Ecilop as well as a base model.

ecilop and glyder 600 - who is right and who is wrong

Seeing that Foxtech did mention about Ecilop on Glyder 600 product page – so this is true then. Sadly for the RC Group user who read the email does not understand the content entirely and (in an indirect way) said Foxtech was lying when they did not.

glyder 600 pnp review

Dropping that subject, here comes the real deal… I was one of (or I believe I am) the first to preorder Glyder 600 Plug and Play (PNP) version – and also made a custom upgrade from the standard Naza Flight Controller (FC) to Zero UAV YS-X6 instead. If you are interested to get the PNP version and in dire need to know more about it – come on in for the full review.

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Horyzon HD camera mounting on DJI F450

August 26, 2012

First of all let me start off by saying I am terribly bad in DIY and hardware stuffs! And with my purchase of Horyzon HD had given me nightmares to figure out a way to get rid of those jello’s and vibrations on my recorded videos.

I started off by strapping the cam directly to the F450 center frame with 2 cable ties around the ‘ears’ of the cam. This doesn’t work well at all and I was getting terrible rolling shutter effects (jellos of course) and vibrations all over!

Video above was taken with 720p 60fps resolution. The rolling shutter effect occurs because of the camera CMOS sensor. Having a CCD camera would eliminate this issue but before I bought another set of quadcopter with gimbal that can hold a standard sized CCD camera in place, I have to try my best to eliminate it with whatever that I have.

So after some time researching on the internet and hearing tips from my fellow RC FPV friends, I went to experiment on various style of mounts (and still am!). Googling for “Horyzon HD mount for DJI F450” does not give any satisfactory result on how I should mount it.. so in the end I put some double sided tape on F450 center frame – put the cam on top of it – strap it nicely with cable ties, and hot glue the cam to it won’t move. The result? …

This was again taken on 720p 60fps. It’s better than before. Camera was nice and firm, but I’m getting vibrations now! Oh what to do?

Reading up on RC Explorer site, I found his topic on creating a good camera mount (you guys can view it > here < ) – so I used some silicon tube (I bought these from hardware shop that sells water filter tubes) some zipties, a wood type ruler, and some tapes. The result after some tests?

Still on 720p 60fps (my favourite reso!). And here’s some pictures of the ugly mount (but hey video-wise it is better than what I ever had before!)

As you can see, the cam sits on double sided tapes, wrapped with another kind of tape, sits on a wooden ruler…

and held by cable ties which goes through 2 silicon tubes. So there are 2 layers of vibration dampener (tube and double sided tape) before it reaches the camera.

I’d say this is far from perfect.. but hey for being a newbie in this DIY stuffs.. I thought why not share this with the rest of you guys. Who knows maybe you can learn, or perhaps give me more tips to improve my mount. Or I should go and get myself a GoPro and a new frame (TBS Discovery?) perhaps? Hahaha.. oh I so love that frame! 😀

Product Review – Horyzon HD v1

June 9, 2012

Me and a few good friends of mine are one of the first Malaysian users of the Horyzon HD, sold my Foxtech.


And seeing that this product is still fresh and new (especially in Malaysia), I will do an honest review of the production unit which I have bought. Hopefully this will serve as a ground to all local and international buyers out there.

Horyzon HD specs at a glance
Quoted on box as “The best 1080p full HD FPV Camera in the world”
(Wayyy overboard with this one, and let me start off by saying it is NOT the best)
5.0 Megapixel CMOS
1080p and 720p HD recording 30/60fps to MicroSD card
Photo resolution 2592 x 1944 (timelapse mode available)
Video out for FPV
claimed 3.5v – 5v DC

The packaging

The unit comes packaged in a compact box which labels “The best 1080p full HD FPV Camera in the world“. And during the first days of receiving the unit, I was happy and anxious to try the unit out as I believe that it IS the BEST FPV camera in the world (I mean, why would they print it out there if it is not right?). However as I was busy with my family and stuffs, going here and there.. I was only able to open the package, inspect the unit (making sure there’s no visible damage), run it off my receiver (Rx), check the display using the included LCD, some indoor test recording, and it went back in the box for a week before I finally have some real time to test the unit out.

Horyzon HD, what’s inside?
– The camera itself
– LCD unit
– AV out cable
– USB cable

So the nightmare begin …
Well, I guess you can’t run away from issues as this is the first version of the product. But seeing TOO many issues for a start leaves a very bad impression for a company which is brave enough to quote “The best 1080p full HD FPV Camera in the world“. In short, after a few minutes toying around with it, it’s simply not the best anymore. The first issue is the horrible red hue / tint image produced by the cam.

Then there was this pixellated image issue when I changed resolution

If you can’t see it, I suggest you view the video above in HD.

I managed to find a ‘working’ setup for myself, which is to record and view @ 720pH resolution (60fps). Now some does say that they hate wide angle because it gives them the curved view, but for me, I personally loved them as I can see more details when flying (although the picture may be a little bit small). Horyzon HD have a standard 120° view, and claimed able to fit a GoPro lens thus increasing it to 140° view. For me the 120° is wide enough for my aerial video purposes. If you want lesser curve and slightly less view, just switch it to 1080p on the fly.

So back to the issue. Mr Fu (Foxtech rep) is saying that the red hue issue appears because the unit overheats. Now, that is NOT a good thing since Malaysia is NOT that hot (around 26° – 35°c average) and for a product not being to operate normally under these temperature should be ashamed of selling it off internationally.

But wait, it doesn’t stop there. Not only Malaysian users are affected (yes all of our purchased units have the same issue), even those users in Japan, United States, United Kingdom are facing the same issue. So is it really a heat issue or something else? Wayneuk, which is one of Horyzon HD user that also face this issue that the company representative claimed to have a ‘dead cam’ surprisingly changed the unit stock lens to another one, and the red hue issue disappears! Despite to this, the rep is still saying that they are using regulators to undervolt the cam, so that the issue dissappears, completely ignoring (at the time of writing) Wayneuk discovery of the lens that’s being the (possible) root cause of the problem. One of the senior well known forumers Timecop also find it hard to believe that the issue was produced by power supply. A senior local RC enthusiast QiW had also made some tests by underpowering the unit down to 3.78v, however we are still seeing some red hue / tint, and underpowering it more will result in auto shut down of the camera within a few minutes. Anyway, at this point of time, we are still waiting for the issue to be resolved (hopefully soon). Thanks to all the ‘unpaid’ beta testers 🙂 (lol).

Anyway, you are free to read more about the progress at the official product discussion thread in RC Groups.

The list of issues so far :
– Red / pinkish hue / tint / color video issue
– Pixellated videos in some resolution and also caused by some image rotation function
terrible UHF interference (if you are using UHF / Dragonlink, avoid purchasing the unit until issue is resolved)
– function buttons are very hard to press and awkward placement
– always STOP recording after flight, if you power it off straight, your entire video file will be corrupted
– anything more that i’ve missed?

The good stuffs about Horyzon HD and why you should buy it :
Well believe me when I say I am damn pissed by all these issues. But you have got to see both sides of it, the negative and the positive aspects of the cam. I’d say I will be a very happy customer if all these issues are resolved. But sometimes it’s a pain to get out and use it, as I would be seeing red hue and sometimes pixellated videos most of the time! However, here is why you should get the Horyzon HD (in my personal opinion), and let me make it clear, I would only recommend you to buy this AFTER ALL THE ISSUES HAS BEEN SORTED OUT…

– It’s lightweight and small, easy to be placed anywhere and on many aircraft’s
– Good video out quality
– 1080p and 720p HD recording onboard with microSD card
– LCD monitor included, so no need to assume your camera placement, you can see it on the fly.
– The price is ‘affordable’ to most.

And here’s a few videos that was taken by me using Horyzon HD, I’m facing difficulties in reducing jello and vibrations (because it’s a CMOS sensor type cam), because the cam is so lightweight it is very hard for me to stick it firm in one place. Maybe I will get lesser jello and vibrations in future…


One of the best and fun friendliest flying site in Selangor, Puncak Jalil.


FPV inside a car

Update, 14th December 2012 : Foxtech have released a firmware update which fix (most) of the red / pink hue issue (however if you have a very keen eye – you should be able to spot some a bit of red hue at top left of frame still – just a bit). Also they have released a new casing which blocks UHF interference. Plus, they have heard user comments and made a V2 of the product with all bug fix, better sensor, and a better keypad to push those pesky little buttons. Have a look at it @ Foxtech official website.

Video with latest (probably last) firmware on Horyzon HD V1


Popwing @ Puncak Jalil

Goodbye Picnik..

January 23, 2012

One of the best online image editor is finally going to hit the dust..

But wait… according to CNET
And until its demise, Picnik’s premium service is free, and its premium subscribers will receive full refunds

So for those who wants to drive Picnik premium service, go ahead to the website before it shuts down on 20th April 2012.

But of course, being Google (lol) – I am sure they will just replace Picnik with some other awesome tool integrated into Google+ or so. Google is just like trying to monopoly everything on the internet. Well, I don’t think we will mind much, as long as it’s free.

If you’re looking for other online image editing sites, I’ve previously covered about this before. So head over > HERE < to read more.

Edit your photos anywhere!

September 3, 2009

If you have the Internet and a web-browser, you can basically edit your photos on any computer without even installing any additional programs. And best of all, it’s free!

vignette tool on pixlr

Pictured here is Pixlr which have a nice set of tools similar to photoshop. Pixlr comes with simple, clean, and nice interface. You can draw, put texts, do simple adjustments such as sharpening, etcs, even apply several special effects to your photos (I love the Vignette tool!).

Here are several others that are worth to look at :

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Turn any photos into a HDR!

June 25, 2009

The latest trend in photographing is HDR which stands for High Dynamic Range. You can view the wiki here if you want to know more about it. And I was totally blown away when i saw my first HDR photo – and was wondering how I could make one out?

I stumbled across Redynamix which is a plugin for Adobe Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro that enable normal single 8bits images to be converted into HDR with just a few simple clicks.

nonhdr

before…

hdred

after RedynaMix’xed…

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