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Spark cannot maintain altitude. Goes up and down by itself.
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15297 43 2017-6-30
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markol
lvl.2
Flight distance : 11913 ft
Canada
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Just got my Spark today fly more combo. When flying the spark outdoor and indoor, it constantly goes up and down and doesn't stay still for some reason. Has anyone else had this issue? The video below shows what happens and this is withoit any sort of input from me. I'm not touching the controller at all.


2017-6-30
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Phuong Do
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Flight distance : 29800 ft
Vietnam
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Hey,i noticed you fly indoor.it is normal under atti mode (something like manual mide).Go outside,with gps mode (like automatic mode) it will hover more stable.If your Spark does not as you to calibrate anything,then I believe it has no issue at all.
2017-6-30
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hallmark007
Captain
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Have you got VPS disabled?
2017-6-30
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markol
lvl.2
Flight distance : 11913 ft
Canada
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Phuong Do Posted at 2017-6-30 15:35
Hey,i noticed you fly indoor.it is normal under atti mode (something like manual mide).Go outside,with gps mode (like automatic mode) it will hover more stable.If your Spark does not as you to calibrate anything,then I believe it has no issue at all.

I tried outside and it did the same thing as well. I went home and tried it again outside and it does seem more stable now though. At least it's not going up and down constantly as much.
2017-6-30
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markol
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Canada
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hallmark007 Posted at 2017-6-30 15:49
Have you got VPS disabled?

Nope it was enabled. I checked the settings before take off.
2017-6-30
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hallmark007
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markol Posted at 2017-6-30 15:54
Nope it was enabled. I checked the settings before take off.

They say tiles are not a good surface for VPS , I realise it's a carpet mat but textured surface is better, I know you have tried outside if same thing happening make sure you sensors have nothing on them and are clean you could try calibrating them.
It's VPS that lets you spark maintain its height even if you don't have gps.
2017-6-30
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Lok Mavic
lvl.3
Flight distance : 1486660 ft
United Kingdom
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That is weird and I do not blame lack of GPS for this because VPS is good enough to maintain it position. So just like hallmark007 said, try calibrating VPS using DJI Assistant 2 and see whether the problem persist.
2017-7-1
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markol
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Canada
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Not sure if this is related to it, but I tried a few flights since then and it seems to have been working properly. This morning, however, I took off outside while standing maybe 6 feet away with the Spark facing away from me. It hovered for a little bit before I rotated the Spark camera towards me, and then the obstacle avoidance alerted me (as expected), but then the Spark started losing altitude again and went down to about 5cm from the ground... and then went back up a bit in altitude, and back down.
Do you guys think it has to do with the obstacle avoidance causing this?
2017-7-1
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markol
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Canada
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Has anyone else had this issue? I'm just worried it's a hardware problem...
2017-7-2
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Ken-W
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hallmark007 Posted at 2017-6-30 15:49
Have you got VPS disabled?

I don't think VPS can be disabled on the Spark. mavic yes, Spark no. Or are you referring to the obstacle avoidance system (forward sensors)?

I get this behavior sometimes when I fly indoors. Not sure why it happens, but it does, and not always
2017-7-2
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hallmark007
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Ken-W Posted at 2017-7-2 05:42
I don't think VPS can be disabled on the Spark. mavic yes, Spark no. Or are you referring to the obstacle avoidance system (forward sensors)?

I get this behavior sometimes when I fly indoors. Not sure why it happens, but it does, and not always

Yeah your right can't turn vision sensors off.
2017-7-2
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fansa7dc5944
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Have you updated the firmware? You said that you just got it.
2017-7-2
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markol
lvl.2
Flight distance : 11913 ft
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Yeah I updated the firmware right after I got it and before I flew for the first time.... the thing is it doesn't happen every time, so it's quite worrying not knowing what's causing it
2017-7-2
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markol
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Canada
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Alright, so the Spark is going back for a refund.

It happened again today. Took off outside with full 16 GPS satellites, battery at 100%, and it just couldn't maintain altitude. I launched it from the ground and it kept going down dropping to the floor by itself and would come back up and go back down. I uploaded the video taken from the Spark below. I just launched it, and then the sudden drop in altitude was with me NOT touching any controls whatsoever. I tried to land it too by holding onto left stick but it wouldn't land as well and just kept ascending and descending before I was able to grab it from beneath and turn it 90 degrees to stop the motors. Holding the left stick up to try to gain altitude did nothing either.

I'll repurchase when all the kinks and issues have been worked out. Or go for the Mavic Pro instead.

2017-7-3
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eylneb
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markol Posted at 2017-7-3 17:31
Alright, so the Spark is going back for a refund.

It happened again today. Took off outside with full 16 GPS satellites, battery at 100%, and it just couldn't maintain altitude. I launched it from the ground and it kept going down dropping to the floor by itself and would come back up and go back down. I uploaded the video taken from the Spark below. I just launched it, and then the sudden drop in altitude was with me NOT touching any controls whatsoever. I tried to land it too by holding onto left stick but it wouldn't land as well and just kept ascending and descending before I was able to grab it from beneath and turn it 90 degrees to stop the motors. Holding the left stick up to try to gain altitude did nothing either.

Wow.. did DJI manage to figure out what was wrong? Perhaps the propellers are not installed correctly?
2017-7-4
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fansa7dc5944
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Let me guess. The Spark uses new way to maintain its altitude and sense downward obstruction. Previous models uses visual camera and ultrasonic. Since Inspire 2 Dji start using infrared sensor. In Spark you can see 1 camera and 2 infrared camera at the bottom. Try cleaning the cover using damp clean cloth. If it still goes up and down at low altitude then send it back to Dji. There is nothing that you can do. Next try flying high. Let's say 10 m. Spark should use barometer. It it can maintain altitude then it has problem only at low altitude.
2017-7-4
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markol
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eylneb Posted at 2017-7-4 00:53
Wow.. did DJI manage to figure out what was wrong? Perhaps the propellers are not installed correctly?

Nope. They just told me to send it back for analysis.....
Don't think it's the propellers because the issue doesn't happen every single time.
2017-7-4
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markol
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fansa7dc5944 Posted at 2017-7-4 02:18
Let me guess. The Spark uses new way to maintain its altitude and sense downward obstruction. Previous models uses visual camera and ultrasonic. Since Inspire 2 Dji start using infrared sensor. In Spark you can see 1 camera and 2 infrared camera at the bottom. Try cleaning the cover using damp clean cloth. If it still goes up and down at low altitude then send it back to Dji. There is nothing that you can do. Next try flying high. Let's say 10 m. Spark should use barometer. It it can maintain altitude then it has problem only at low altitude.

I have tried cleaning it and it still had the issue.
Yesterday I flew it up to about 15m into the air, and without me touching anything on the controller, it descended very fast by itself onto the ground. Thankfully it was grass so the impact wasn't hard but it was scary and extremely dangerous.
It's going back to DJI for sure. Such a shame though.
2017-7-4
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fansa7dc5944
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Whatif turnoff the rc and control the Spark via mobile device. You will need to reset Spark wifi by pressing the power button for 9 seconds. The Spark will no longer link to rc and your mobile will see Spark SSID directly.
Then try flying it again. Your range will be limited to 30x50 m. cylinder.
To relink Spark to rc, put rc in binding mode by pressing [Pause]+[Fn]+[Custom] until you hear quick single beep then press and hold power button at Spark for 3 seconds. Consult the remote controller before start anything.
2017-7-4
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markol
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Flight distance : 11913 ft
Canada
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fansa7dc5944 Posted at 2017-7-4 05:05
Whatif turnoff the rc and control the Spark via mobile device. You will need to reset Spark wifi by pressing the power button for 9 seconds. The Spark will no longer link to rc and your mobile will see Spark SSID directly.
Then try flying it again. Your range will be limited to 30x50 m. cylinder.
To relink Spark to rc, put rc in binding mode by pressing +[Fn]+[Custom] until you hear quick single beep then press and hold power button at Spark for 3 seconds. Consult the remote controller before start anything.

It had the same issue when I wasn't connected to the RC or phone and was just using gesture mode with palm launch too though.
2017-7-4
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edwinween
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I think the same thing happen to me, only mine is moving forward or side ways more often.

I just got my spark about a week ago. It was flying just fine when I first got it. I had minor accident recently. I activate one of the one shot mode where the drone flying backward while tracking a subject. Short story it crash while flying backwards, luckily it just minor scratches here and there on the propeller and the body. One of the bottom cover of the propeller fell off, I was able to find it and put it back again. My initial respond was to turn it on again and try to fly again, it was working.  So I store it and charged it again to fly another time. I fly it again recently, and notice something is not right. After I take off whenever I just put it on hover, without moving the controller, it seems to be slightly moving forward or side way from it's current position.To test again it, I decided to fly it indoor as there will be no wind, the same thing happen again. There's nothing broken on the body of Spark, as I was quite fortunate that it only fall about from 70 cm ,to the place it drop. Is this normal? It keeps telling me to switch to Alti mode...is this the reason?
2017-7-5
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fansa7dc5944
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"macol", I agree that you should send your Spark to Dji and claim for new unit.
2017-7-5
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eylneb
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edwinween Posted at 2017-7-5 05:38
I think the same thing happen to me, only mine is moving forward or side ways more often.

I just got my spark about a week ago. It was flying just fine when I first got it. I had minor accident recently. I activate one of the one shot mode where the drone flying backward while tracking a subject. Short story it crash while flying backwards, luckily it just minor scratches here and there on the propeller and the body. One of the bottom cover of the propeller fell off, I was able to find it and put it back again. My initial respond was to turn it on again and try to fly again, it was working.  So I store it and charged it again to fly another time. I fly it again recently, and notice something is not right. After I take off whenever I just put it on hover, without moving the controller, it seems to be slightly moving forward or side way from it's current position.To test again it, I decided to fly it indoor as there will be no wind, the same thing happen again. There's nothing broken on the body of Spark, as I was quite fortunate that it only fall about from 70 cm ,to the place it drop. Is this normal? It keeps telling me to switch to Alti mode...is this the reason?

propellers might be damaged... try changing it (with the spare)  to test
2017-7-9
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KevinS.
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I'm having exactly the same problem. I'm flying outside in GPS mode with 12+ satellites but when I attempt to do a tacking shot (like through a gap in the trees) the Spark is all over the place both in height and left to right. I've also tried in Tripod mode and it does the same thing. This is all with zero wind. I've also recalibrate the compass without success and there is zero interference. I'm using the controller. Sometimes the variance is so much that from 15 feet off the ground the Spark almost depends to ground level during a forward/reverse shot. How can you set up a tracking shot when there is this much variance? I've never had this with my P2 or P4 at all. Is anyone else experiencing the same problem or have a solution?
2017-7-15
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hallmark007
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KevinS. Posted at 2017-7-15 01:13
I'm having exactly the same problem. I'm flying outside in GPS mode with 12+ satellites but when I attempt to do a tacking shot (like through a gap in the trees) the Spark is all over the place both in height and left to right. I've also tried in Tripod mode and it does the same thing. This is all with zero wind. I've also recalibrate the compass without success and there is zero interference. I'm using the controller. Sometimes the variance is so much that from 15 feet off the ground the Spark almost depends to ground level during a forward/reverse shot. How can you set up a tracking shot when there is this much variance? I've never had this with my P2 or P4 at all. Is anyone else experiencing the same problem or have a solution?

Can you post your log. It sounds like VPS problem or when flying under trees you might be loosing gps.

You can upload your log to link below, just click on link and follow instructions then come back here and post the link.

http://www.phantomhelp.com/LogViewer/Upload/
2017-7-15
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Hasi
lvl.2

Sri Lanka
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Does anyone know the answer for this problem? Or any DJI Assistant know the answer for this issue? GREAT problem for me too.
2017-8-16
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alan1206
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markol Posted at 2017-7-1 08:38
Not sure if this is related to it, but I tried a few flights since then and it seems to have been working properly. This morning, however, I took off outside while standing maybe 6 feet away with the Spark facing away from me. It hovered for a little bit before I rotated the Spark camera towards me, and then the obstacle avoidance alerted me (as expected), but then the Spark started losing altitude again and went down to about 5cm from the ground... and then went back up a bit in altitude, and back down.
Do you guys think it has to do with the obstacle avoidance causing this?

I got same issue. It cant keep the height
2017-8-16
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Hasi
lvl.2

Sri Lanka
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Please Any one know how to solve this, please post. it will be great help for others. If its a manufacture fault, please DJI assistants inform us , so we can send our drones back to DJI
2017-8-18
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djiuser_7LcXxfI
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United States
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I have had the same problem.  I had it go straight up then slam down on my garage and bounced back up.  I am scared to fly it around people.
2017-8-18
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Charles Adams
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Not sure where to go with this:  This topic seems to cover a chronic case of "hoppy spark" in that it just can't go up.  Some people have mentioned similar issues, but not quite the same.  Loss of altitude while flying.  This seems to be a separate experience, of no capability to gain elevation at all.

If you are willing to give it a go, I'd see if they are willing to replace it.
2017-8-18
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milksteak
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i've had this happen to me, the day after I updated the Late July firmware.  it was an isolated experience.  If i recall correctly after the late july firmware update, but after switching to a spare battery and without updating the battery firmware (didn't get the prompt since I switched battery inside the control UI).  The firmware check and update prompt only shows up if you exit the controller UI and back to the main screen UI.  Anyway I'm not sure if it's even a factor but this was the status of my spark when it happened to me.

Immediately after take off the spark couldn't hold position and descended just like yours until it just hit the ground, quite hard actually (gf watched and commented).  Tried lifting off a second time and instead of landing, it kind of  bounced up and then down and then back up as it didn't completely lose all "lift". My gf was asking me why I was doing this.   The propellers were always spinning both instances.  Second instance I think I gave it some throttle up to try to keep it in the air.  It did eventually get up a few meters and stabilized after the "bouncing" but I wasn't about to fly it after that, so brought it back down to reset the spark, app, and controller.   It flew fine after the restart and I never experienced the bouncing or dropping onto the ground again since then, and through at least 14 more battery discharges, of which probably 10 of those discharges around were on older battery firmwares.  Again not saying the battery thing is even a factor, but it's odd that it happened twice just that one day, and never again after.




2017-8-18
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fans937bf6af
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I have exactly the same problem ... my Spark is even making the same noise.  It doesn't really seems like a software / situation assessment problem.  It seems more like something that would happen if you had power delivery problems.   I've had this sort of behavior for a good month ... inside, outside ATTI or GPS so I suspect sensors and software may not be the problem.  I'll be interested in knowing the outcome.  The drone is more or less unusable now (though I bought insurance, so I guess I can just contact DJI for a replacement, which I'll probably do if there is no quick fix for this)
2017-9-26
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fans937bf6af
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milksteak Posted at 2017-8-18 11:02
i've had this happen to me, the day after I updated the Late July firmware.  it was an isolated experience.  If i recall correctly after the late july firmware update, but after switching to a spare battery and without updating the battery firmware (didn't get the prompt since I switched battery inside the control UI).  The firmware check and update prompt only shows up if you exit the controller UI and back to the main screen UI.  Anyway I'm not sure if it's even a factor but this was the status of my spark when it happened to me.

Immediately after take off the spark couldn't hold position and descended just like yours until it just hit the ground, quite hard actually (gf watched and commented).  Tried lifting off a second time and instead of landing, it kind of  bounced up and then down and then back up as it didn't completely lose all "lift". My gf was asking me why I was doing this.   The propellers were always spinning both instances.  Second instance I think I gave it some throttle up to try to keep it in the air.  It did eventually get up a few meters and stabilized after the "bouncing" but I wasn't about to fly it after that, so brought it back down to reset the spark, app, and controller.   It flew fine after the restart and I never experienced the bouncing or dropping onto the ground again since then, and through at least 14 more battery discharges, of which probably 10 of those discharges around were on older battery firmwares.  Again not saying the battery thing is even a factor, but it's odd that it happened twice just that one day, and never again after.

The potential for battery software problems seems to ring true.  I updated all four of my batteries about a month ago with the new software, and that (now that you bring this up) was about the time I started having this problem.   I noticed the problem the first time after update that I flew the Spark.   I haven't once been able to fly my Spark since the battery update.
2017-9-26
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fans937bf6af
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SOLVED:   I talked to DJI and they suggested that I reinstall the firmware, so I used DJI Assistant 2.  First, factory reset everything, and then updated firmware (four times, one for each battery).  It turns out that the battery that I had in the drone lacked any updates, and firmware may have been corrupted for all I know.  Anyway, after upgrading the firmware on the batteries, all controls work perfectly.  

I suspect others having this problem may either not have upgraded their battery firmware, or may have upgraded one battery, but not the others.  You have to do a firmware load for each battery independently.
2017-9-27
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fans937bf6af Posted at 2017-9-27 10:12
SOLVED:   I talked to DJI and they suggested that I reinstall the firmware, so I used DJI Assistant 2.  First, factory reset everything, and then updated firmware (four times, one for each battery).  It turns out that the battery that I had in the drone lacked any updates, and firmware may have been corrupted for all I know.  Anyway, after upgrading the firmware on the batteries, all controls work perfectly.  

I suspect others having this problem may either not have upgraded their battery firmware, or may have upgraded one battery, but not the others.  You have to do a firmware load for each battery independently.

Thanks for your update. Glad you solve the problem.
2017-9-28
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markol Posted at 2017-7-4 05:28
It had the same issue when I wasn't connected to the RC or phone and was just using gesture mode with palm launch too though.

Did you solve the problem now? Did you try to calibrate the IMU and compass before flight? You can export the flight data for us to analyze before you send it back. Thanks for your support.
2017-9-28
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edwinween Posted at 2017-7-5 05:38
I think the same thing happen to me, only mine is moving forward or side ways more often.

I just got my spark about a week ago. It was flying just fine when I first got it. I had minor accident recently. I activate one of the one shot mode where the drone flying backward while tracking a subject. Short story it crash while flying backwards, luckily it just minor scratches here and there on the propeller and the body. One of the bottom cover of the propeller fell off, I was able to find it and put it back again. My initial respond was to turn it on again and try to fly again, it was working.  So I store it and charged it again to fly another time. I fly it again recently, and notice something is not right. After I take off whenever I just put it on hover, without moving the controller, it seems to be slightly moving forward or side way from it's current position.To test again it, I decided to fly it indoor as there will be no wind, the same thing happen again. There's nothing broken on the body of Spark, as I was quite fortunate that it only fall about from 70 cm ,to the place it drop. Is this normal? It keeps telling me to switch to Alti mode...is this the reason?

Edwinween, any error message from your app? Please try to calibrate the IMU and compass and see if it works well. If not, I would recommend you check the propellers and see if they were damaged in the last crash. Keep us updated if the problem remains.
2017-9-28
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Nikeya
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I have had the same issue I reconnected phone remote and Spark together rescanned drone and remote barcode reader. Relink them both again, no longer flying up and down after takeoff.
2018-5-21
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djiuser_4M6hrCxhjOX8
New

Brazil
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Bodies look for "Hoppy Spark" in yt, this problem can be in the esc wire
2018-12-29
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Welshy1275
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markol Posted at 2017-7-2 05:40
Has anyone else had this issue? I'm just worried it's a hardware problem...

Hi my spark has just started doing it
It’s been fine since I got it from new
2020-5-25
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