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DJI Mavic Air - Mid flight disconnection - RTH landed - What hap...
1258 13 2018-8-12
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Formula E
lvl.2
Flight distance : 283510 ft
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I was capturing a property for my client in an urban part of a Seattle neighborhood today with my newer Mavic Air. This is a replacement craft and I'm well versed in the operations and have owned other DJI drones etc.

About one hour into the shoot, literally after snapping my last frame I lose connection with the craft. The control signal is blinking red and no input is possible. The app is showing full disconnection and nothing can be done there. The drone goes into RTH. It starts the descent straight towards power lines about 15ft off from the take-off/recorded point. Within 10ft of lines, it maneuvers right and then directly into the original launch zone and lands safely by itself where I did the manual take off and recorded RTH from.

There was still no connection at this point. I reset the controller/app and that did nothing. Reset the battery on drone and boom ready to fly 13 satellites. In these Urban areas, I'm flying in 5.8ghz. At the time of the disconnection, there were 17 satellite connections and MA was in clear view of the RC. In 30 minutes of flight time prior, I only experienced high wind warnings. No image transmission or connection problems. Smooth sailing I thought.. Approx 223ft in the air when this event occurred- about 100ft above the building. I have had very brief disconnections before but only briefly and the signal was immediately regained. This was not the case. I was 100% at the mercy of the RTH.

All firmware is up to date. The flight logs don't provide any insight...Was there anything I could have done to regain the signal with craft mid-air?





2018-8-12
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Formula E
lvl.2
Flight distance : 283510 ft
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Lol nothing guys? Not sure what DJI will have to say about this when I call tomorrow. Seems like it could be a defective drone. Now i'm answering for myself here.
2018-8-13
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GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
Singapore
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MA did disconnected sometimes. It’s not common but can happen. There are many post for this issue already in forum. DJI so far has no response to the disconnection. What you can do is restart the RC when disconnected and it should reconnect again. You should has enough open area recorded as home point for RTH landing when disconnected. Ensure locked over 10 GPS satellites and home point recorded correctly before takeoff.
2018-8-13
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Formula E
lvl.2
Flight distance : 283510 ft
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GDL Posted at 2018-8-13 21:40
MA did disconnected sometimes. It’s not common but can happen. There are many post for this issue already in forum. DJI so far has no response to the disconnection. What you can do is restart the RC when disconnected and it should reconnect again. You should has enough open area recorded as home point for RTH landing when disconnected. Ensure locked over 10 GPS satellites and home point recorded correctly before takeoff.

Did you read my post? This was a terminal disconnection and restarting the RC did nothing. 17 satellites, and clear view of RC at only 110/223ft at the time of disconnection. Flying commercially you don't always get wide open areas.

This is a huge problem with liability and if this happens often in that manner I experienced frequently to others they should recall every MA. Not posting about this issue would be terrible advice. Regardless of how many people already have.

How can they not respond to this issue? I've owned another MA with 92 flights and this has never happened.
2018-8-13
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Optimus_Prime
Captain
Flight distance : 518048 ft
Vietnam
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Formula E Posted at 2018-8-13 21:54
Did you read my post? This was a terminal disconnection and restarting the RC did nothing. 17 satellites, and clear view of RC at only 110/223ft at the time of disconnection. Flying commercially you don't always get wide open areas.

This is a huge problem with liability and if this happens often in that manner I experienced frequently to others they should recall every MA. Not posting about this issue would be terrible advice. Regardless of how many people already have.

If you are using android, can you downgrade to lower version of DJI GO 4 app, you can look for it from apkmirror, version 4.2.16 (June version)? I have exactly the same issue with latest dji go 4.2.22 (shorter range, lost connection so usual from the same spot) on 0400 firmware of MA. After downgrade i saw improvements alot. Good luck.
P/S: Until now, some users did not meet any unexpected behaviors and some has run into issues and also DJI did not respond yet so still waiting. My suggestion is always flight with your drone in sight. Edit: if this happened, just try to force close DJI Go app (kill its process) and relaunch immediately. I saw this is work around solution.
2018-8-13
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Formula E
lvl.2
Flight distance : 283510 ft
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Optimus_Prime Posted at 2018-8-13 22:15
If you are using android, can you downgrade to lower version of DJI GO 4 app, you can look for it from apkmirror, version 4.2.16 (June version)? I have exactly the same issue with latest dji go 4.2.22 (shorter range, lost connection so usual from the same spot) on 0400 firmware of MA. After downgrade i saw improvements alot. Good luck.
P/S: Until now, some users did not meet any unexpected behaviors and some has run into issues and also DJI did not respond yet so still waiting. My suggestion is always flight with your drone in sight.

Thanks, I use an IOS device. Seemed like it could have been an issue with the go4 app. I will continue to run this latest version and hope this doesn't happen. Are you saying you were able to replicate a close proximity disconnection with the newest version of the app?

DJI needs to address this asap.

Anyone with links to others with this issue would be appreciated!
2018-8-13
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nixuspix
Captain
Flight distance : 2772178 ft
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Latvia
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Yes this happened to me already 2 times, have described these events here on the forum, but as it was said above, no any reaction from DJI. The good is that RTH is working flawlessly. What device to restart to restore functionality it depends.... Sometimes it is OK to restart RC, sometimes you nedd to restart the AC ( your case with battery reset), maybe sometimes you need to restart both
2018-8-13
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Formula E
lvl.2
Flight distance : 283510 ft
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nixuspix Posted at 2018-8-13 22:29
Yes this happened to me already 2 times, have described these events here on the forum, but as it was said above, no any reaction from DJI. The good is that RTH is working flawlessly. What device to restart to restore functionality it depends.... Sometimes it is OK to restart RC, sometimes you nedd to restart the AC ( your case with battery reset), maybe sometimes you need to restart both

Lol, shoot me. Wondering how many times have you experienced this personally in contrast to your total flights on the MA craft? This happened on my 10th flight on a new MA craft. 0 times after 92 on my other MA.

That's incredible if they have nothing to say about this issue being experienced at a high clip. The battery reset was required as you said. That's not possible midflight, unfortunately. Going forward I can't recommend anyone to purchase this drone anymore which has been my favorite. Figure it out DJI!
2018-8-13
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Optimus_Prime
Captain
Flight distance : 518048 ft
Vietnam
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Formula E Posted at 2018-8-13 22:21
Thanks, I use an IOS device. Seemed like it could have been an issue with the go4 app. I will continue to run this latest version and hope this doesn't happen. Are you saying you were able to replicate a close proximity disconnection with the newest version of the app?

DJI needs to address this asap.

I have sent them all flight record and they said they need to test out more. I have sent on twitter btw. Exactly like your disconnection issue.
As you said you are on iOS device, yesterday, I have tried to use iPhone 5s to fly with latest DJI go on it. I have issue:
1. From 70 meters above ground, cloudy weather, obstacles avoidance sensor alerted several times front and back even nothing around. ofcourse i had cleaned sensor lens before fly
2. Lots of notification: motor current error, strong interference, signal weak, lost video signal... even it just 40 meters away from me
   So in my experience after back to Android with lower version of DJI Go, it gets better. I will wait for fix and just fly MA in sight in case issue happens.
2018-8-13
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Formula E
lvl.2
Flight distance : 283510 ft
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Optimus_Prime Posted at 2018-8-13 22:56
I have sent them all flight record and they said they need to test out more. I have sent on twitter btw. Exactly like your disconnection issue.
As you said you are on iOS device, yesterday, I have tried to use iPhone 5s to fly with latest DJI go on it. I have issue:
1. From 70 meters above ground, cloudy weather, obstacles avoidance sensor alerted several times front and back even nothing around. ofcourse i had cleaned sensor lens before fly

Crazy to admit but the MA is my commercial workhorse and its portability and small form factor make it my favorite drone to shoot with. 12mp is still a lot if you know how to edit properly, and the 4k/100mbs is fantastic. It doesn't draw a crowd like the other drones as much too..

I didn't experience any of these additional issues you've stated. Just a very abrupt terminal disconnection in a dense urban environment. The connection was only regained by restarting the craft itself after it landed via RTH. RTH was not that accurate at first either.. luckily it corrected before wiping out into power lines above parked cars..
2018-8-13
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djiuser_b4zzLclcT7G3
lvl.1
Flight distance : 9639 ft

Nigeria
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My MA doesn't stay in the air for more than 3mins, disconnects quite frequently. users suggested defective USB cords, so I've others cords but same story. Disconnects and RTH, I would have to cancel RTH and get back in flight and try to record for another 3mins before it RTHs again. DJI Trade Up is evaluating it for less than $250, what an insult.
2019-8-2
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KREMi
First Officer
Poland
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I don't buy this USB defective cords story - as d/c happens between RC<>AC, not RC<>phone where USB is used.
just it's not reliable AC, DJI don't know why it's happening, they can't read why it's happens from logs - in my flights had it twice in 18months...  both cases got no explanation, and I can not replicate those d/c

So just fly it with v. limited trust - I said many times - for me Mavic Air look like a abandoned product
no futher developing, no fulfilling community requests, limiting unit in software... as WP, dynamic HP, full exact gps coords, extra gimbal steering, quieter props... - they all are possible (with 3rd party, or users workarounds) but are made NOT to work straight from DJI. Make it open platform if u don't wanna support it!

2019-8-3
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djiuser_uBs3WK5vcNHS
Second Officer
Flight distance : 78780 ft
United Kingdom
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I might have had a similar issue with my Spark.  Every single time I took a photo it would disconnect.  Just kept happening.  Eventually tried changing the SD card and that fixed it, taking hundreds of photos and videos since then and it's not disconnected once, whereas before it disconnect literally every single time I took a photo.  Might be worth trying to swap out the SD card.
2019-8-3
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Fendert
lvl.3
United States
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This happened to me as well, very scary!!  I was using my MA to photograph homes along a river when it lost contact about 1800' from my location.  I could never reestablish connection and almost gave up when I finally heard the drone landing.  Unfortunetly it was landing IN the river (about 5' from where it took off from).  I ended up having to jump in the water and grab it before it landed in the water.  I ended up slicing my finger wide open; blood was everywhere, it really sucked!
2019-8-17
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