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Light Painting - On Board Waypoints vs Virtual Sticks

Chrislaf

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Ran a light painting mission to compare On Board Waypoints vs Virtual Sticks. I used my old Phantom 3 Standard running Litchi for the On Board waypoints and my Mini 3 Pro running Dronelink for the Virtual Sticks. The mission path was created using Google Earth Pro then imported into Litchi and rotated using @DJ Wes's Mission Rotator. The Litchi mission was exported into Dronelink so that the Mini 3 Pro could fly the mission. Both drones flew the exact same mission.

I used my DSLR on a tripod to do a long exposure of the drones flying the waypoint missions.

Here are the results. The first image is the path flown on the Phantom 3 standard and the second on the Mini 3 Pro. There was no post processing done on either image.

View attachment D3300-7017.jpg

View attachment D3300-7024.jpg

If I fly the mission on the Phantom via Dronelink (virtual Sticks) I get similar results to the Mini 3 Pro image. There is a huge difference between On Board waypoints and virtual sticks for this kind of application.

Chris
 
Awesome!
 
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I prefer the look of the first photo - "Phantom 3 Standard running Litchi for the On Board waypoints".
Same here. The first photo is almost exactly like the original path in Google Earth.

Chris
 
This is a very good visual representation of the difference between the execution of on-board waypoints and the execution of virtual stick waypoints. We all pretty much knew this was the case, but these photos make it clear how much smoother the flight path of on-board waypoints is.

The feedback loop of the on-board waypoint implementation is able to maintain the flight path much better than that of the VSC implementation which requires the flying app to be part of that feedback loop.
 
What a great idea! Never thought of doing something like this. I suspect it’s a lot harder than I first thought though as it’s happening in the vertical rather than horizontal plane. Well done.
 
What a great idea! Never thought of doing something like this. I suspect it’s a lot harder than I first thought though as it’s happening in the vertical rather than horizontal plane. Well done.
It's not as hard as it looks especially with @DJ Wes's Mission Rotator for Litchi waypoints. On his Mission Utilities website it details all of the steps needed to create a light painting mission. Wes's Mission Rotator has been a game changer for me for light painting. Before using his utility, I was basically restricted to doing spirals and circles for light painting. I can now take any basic line drawing and convert it into a light painting mission.

As far as equipment goes, I get the best results with my old Phantom 3 Standard as it can store on-board waypoints which results in a much smoother path that is pretty much exactly like the original path. I also use my Mini 3 Pro. I have Ulanzi cube lights that have coloured gels that allow me to change the colour of the light and I have mounts for both my drones. I use my DSLR on a tripod and do a long exposure to capture the drone flying the path.

I should mention that I have an Adobe Stock (trial) membership that allows me to use a limited number of licensed line art as long as I don't sell or make money from the images.

Chris
 
I also use my Mini 3 Pro. I have Ulanzi cube lights that have coloured gels that allow me to change the colour of the light and I have mounts for both my drones. I use my DSLR on a tripod and do a long exposure to capture the drone flying the path
@Chrislaf you mention you have used your Mini 3 Pro to do light painting. Are you saying you are able to use Mission Rotator for Litchi with it or are doing it freestyle? Also can you provide a link to the Ulanzi Cube that can use gels? I've found other Ulanzi versions but want the lightest weight possible.
 
@Chrislaf you mention you have used your Mini 3 Pro to do light painting. Are you saying you are able to use Mission Rotator for Litchi with it or are doing it freestyle? Also can you provide a link to the Ulanzi Cube that can use gels? I've found other Ulanzi versions but want the lightest weight possible.
I use Mission Rotator to rotate the Litchi mission then export the csv file which I import into Dronelink. Nothing is done freestyle. Litchi Pilot (beta) can directly call up the mission from Mission Hub. I haven’t tried running a light painting mission from Litchi Pilot yet as I have had some quirky problems on my RC Pro with it.

Because doing a light painting mission requires me to be keeping an eye on the drone and being ready with my remote trigger for my DSLR so I know when to start and stop the long exposure, the less I have to worry about the better.

Chris
 
What a fantastic illustration.
Thanks, but a mission like this wouldn’t be possible without the Mission Rotator developed by DJ Wes and his detailed instructions and made available for free to the community.

Chris
 
Also can you provide a link to the Ulanzi Cube that can use gels? I've found other Ulanzi versions but want the lightest weight possible.
The Ulanzi cube lights I have are no longer available but newer ones are available on Amazon. I use a light mount made by @IronSky1 to hold the cube lights on the Mini 3 Pro. Each light is 70g, so I had to register my Mini 3 Pro with Transport Canada. The Mini 3 Pro can lift and fly with the lights but takeoff and landing can be tricky because the Mini 3 rests on the lights. I have been using hand launch and landing with the lights mounted however hand landing can be tricky. I might order a Plus battery eventually to make the Mini 3 better balanced.

Chris
 
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Nice work Chris. If you want I can send you a set of RovyVon A3 lights that will cut your weight by 100g total. Granted they do not have filters however, dropping the weight by 100g on Mini3 may smooth the performance and give better flight path. Filters can always be fabricated if needed.

Again nice work
 
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Nice work Chris. If you want I can send you a set of RovyVon A3 lights that will cut your weight by 100g total. Granted they do not have filters however, dropping the weight by 100g on Mini3 may smooth the performance and give better flight path. Filters can always be fabricated if needed.

Again nice work
Thanks for the offer but I think the differences in the flight paths are due mainly to virtual sticks being used on the Mini 3. I have ran Litchi light painting missions with my Phantom 3 Standard that I imported into Dronelink which only allows the mission to be run using virtual sticks and have gotten similar results to using the Mini 3.

With that being said the RovyVon A3 lights are a consideration for the Mini 3 as I do have large sheets of coloured film that I bought awhile ago to cut for changing light colour before I bought the Ulanzi cubes. How much are the RovyVon lights? I did look them up on Amazon.ca but cannot seem to find the correct ones that would fit your mounts here in Canada.

Even though the Mini 3 is limited to virtual sticks, I am still interested in doing light painting with it and the RovyVon lights would probably make it more stable for takeoff and landing.

Chris
 
It will solve the takeoff and landing issues. If you want to buy Amazon and Ebay have them

RovyVon Aurora A3 Pro G4 USB-C 7000K Keychain Flashlight, 650 High Lumen Super Bright with EDC Mini Size,Scratch Resistant Little Tiny Gadgets,5 Mode,Type-C Rechargeable,Best for Gift Pocket Outdoor​

Usualy 29USD each. Looks like there is a lower cost version now saves 10USD

I can loan you a pair to try or just send you the mounting adaptors at no charge for the mount you have let me know.
 
It will solve the takeoff and landing issues. If you want to buy Amazon and Ebay have them

RovyVon Aurora A3 Pro G4 USB-C 7000K Keychain Flashlight, 650 High Lumen Super Bright with EDC Mini Size,Scratch Resistant Little Tiny Gadgets,5 Mode,Type-C Rechargeable,Best for Gift Pocket Outdoor​

Usualy 29USD each. Looks like there is a lower cost version now saves 10USD

I can loan you a pair to try or just send you the mounting adaptors at no charge for the mount you have let me know.
I have the mounting adapters. They came included with the light mounts that I purchased from you recently. If you can get the lower cost version, PM me the details and I would likely just purchase them as long as they fit in the mounts that came with your light mount kit.

Chris
 
I just ordered a pair of the 27USD version ea I will verify they fit and work (as well as the ones I have) and send them to you after verification.
 
Here's another example of on-board waypoints - Kayaker

View attachment D3300-7132.jpg

And here is a short timelapse showing the drone creating the above image.


Chris
 
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