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Warmer weather causing connectivity problems
591 15 2017-6-7
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fans33885c62
lvl.3
Flight distance : 1006342 ft
Canada
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Greetings UAV operators,

  I've had a long and successful spring so far with about 50 flights logged, really loving the 4, I haven't had many issues (no serious ones anyways) with it.

  However, as the temperatures outside start to climb (I'm in Ontario, Canada), I've noticed an increase in video signal connectivity issues.

  I've had it happen a few times recently and the only common factor I can think of is direct sun - no clouds, and temperatures above 25 degrees.

  Essentially, if it gets too hot outside I have to fly without video on the iPad.

  Is there anything that can be done to compensate for the heat? And why don't operators in consistently hot locations have the same problems?!?

  Or am I totally off as to why the increase in signal connectivity is happening?
2017-6-7
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microlinux
Second Officer
Flight distance : 2576969 ft
United States
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Which model of iPad are you using? I would say it's more likely the iPad is over-heating - it's not  uncommon.
2017-6-7
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AndyP.
lvl.4
Flight distance : 1097280 ft
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United States
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I live in Texas, and as I'm sure you know it gets very hot here. If I'm correct 25C is 80F+, and I've flown my P4P+ in those conditions easily. Haven't had the same issues as you. wish you luck in getting this resolved.
2017-6-7
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fans33885c62
lvl.3
Flight distance : 1006342 ft
Canada
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AndyP. Posted at 2017-6-7 10:43
I live in Texas, and as I'm sure you know it gets very hot here. If I'm correct 25C is 80F+, and I've flown my P4P+ in those conditions easily. Haven't had the same issues as you. wish you luck in getting this resolved.

You are correct sir, 80+, and I know I've seen lots of amazing footage from Texas, so it shouldn't be the heat right?!?
2017-6-7
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PandaFlyingcat
Second Officer
Flight distance : 2014111 ft
United States
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sounds more like software bug.
we have 39C° here in south china these days. some days before i had massive connectivity problems and i thought about the same (heat must be the probolem cause it got extremely hot these days). went to an DJI store nearby, they reinstalled all software on my P4 pro plus, recalibrated IMU and voila: all problems gone from one second to another. no app crashes, no video freezes, no connection problems anymore.

go to a DJI store and tell them what i said. pretty sure they can fix it in minutes.
2017-6-7
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fans33885c62
lvl.3
Flight distance : 1006342 ft
Canada
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microlinux Posted at 2017-6-7 10:38
Which model of iPad are you using? I would say it's more likely the iPad is over-heating - it's not  uncommon.

It's a 64GB iPad mini 2 (? I think) - I've got a couple of them though, so I'll try swapping them out during flights and see if it makes a difference.

Thanks for the input.
2017-6-7
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fans33885c62
lvl.3
Flight distance : 1006342 ft
Canada
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PandaFlyingcat Posted at 2017-6-7 10:55
sounds more like software bug.
we have 39C° here in south china these days. some days before i had massive connectivity problems and i thought about the same (heat must be the probolem cause it got extremely hot these days). went to an DJI store nearby, they reinstalled all software on my P4 pro plus, recalibrated IMU and voila: all problems gone from one second to another. no app crashes, no video freezes, no connection problems anymore.

You've got all the cool stuff in China, unfortunately here in Canada - no such thing as a DJI store.

We purchase direct from the US.

Was it just a simple software reinstall? I should be able to do that on my own.

Cheers!
2017-6-7
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PandaFlyingcat
Second Officer
Flight distance : 2014111 ft
China
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as far as i see he reset everything, delete all cache and disable video cache in flight.
after that go 4 app asked me to do the normal software update before flight, which i did then cause it was already installed and then all problems where gone.
2017-6-7
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fans7f421c5a
Captain
Flight distance : 1848435 ft
France
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Hi.  The answer, I believe, is more do do with sunspot activity than heat or humidity. When you bear in mind that the link between your drone and the RC is a radio signal in the 2.4 Ghz spectrum, and that radio communications are adversely affected by geo-magnetic emmissions from the sun during periods of intense sunspot activity, this could be the case.  Radiohams will tell you that their hobby is severely curtailed at those times too.
2017-6-7
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fans7f421c5a
Captain
Flight distance : 1848435 ft
France
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Good Luck!
2017-6-7
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Geebax
Captain
Australia
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fans7f421c5a Posted at 2017-6-7 22:59
Hi.  The answer, I believe, is more do do with sunspot activity than heat or humidity. When you bear in mind that the link between your drone and the RC is a radio signal in the 2.4 Ghz spectrum, and that radio communications are adversely affected by geo-magnetic emmissions from the sun during periods of intense sunspot activity, this could be the case.  Radiohams will tell you that their hobby is severely curtailed at those times too.

This is a falacy. Sunspot activity affects long-range radio communication, it does not affect short range UHF transmission of the type used by the Phantom.
2017-6-8
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Tmygun
First Officer
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United States
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Had an iPad mini 2 Grey, which means it had a black border around the screen.  
Had it out several times and it would work initially and start malfunctioning as time went on.  Finally realized it was a heat issue (80 + F).....AND the black border on the edge of the screen was making that issue worse.
I would cool off the iPad and it would be fine for a few minutes but then would exhibit exactly what you described above.
Ordered a hood from DJI and that would help extend the time a little, but discerned that the iPad running the app would get warm and the sun would finish the job............in addition I think the iPad mini 2 was underpowered for the job.
Ended up getting an iPad mini 4 Silver with the white border and have never had an issue since......of course the increased ability of the 4 might be contributing to a lack of issues.

Look...I can assure you that I don't drink the Apple Cool-aid........but I know heat WAS an issue for me and processing power MIGHT have been an issue for me......but what you are describing is exactly what I went through.

Hope this at least gives you a place to start.

Good Luck!
2017-6-8
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Spyder3534
lvl.4
Flight distance : 32375 ft
United States
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I'm having a similar issue with my P4.  My posting here.  Flights start out fine but start loosing video after using the intelligent flight modes. Land and everything is warm.  I've got a few theories:
1) I'm using an Iphone 5s so it could be the phone is underpowered or is over heating.  
2) Intelligent flight modes put stress on the drone's CPU and that leads to video issues.
3) My phone is basically out of storage.  Maybe the phone is struggling to accept more data to the cache when its almost full.  
I'm going to try to delete the cache and disable video cache in flight, or reinstalling the app. I plan on getting a new phone in the next few weeks so that may also help my issue.
2017-6-8
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jwt-873
First Officer
Flight distance : 5946467 ft
Canada
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For what it's worth, I've flown in temperatures ranging from +35C to -35C with no video issues.   

I am a radio amateur and as mentioned above, sunspots can wipe out worldwide communication on lower frequencies, but they  have no affect on the 2.4 Ghz line of sight signal between the controller and the drone.   

The only thing that can really affect the signal is interference from other equipment operating in the same frequency range.   Wikipedia has a pretty good list of equipment that is capable of causing interference.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_2.4_GHz_radio_use

2017-6-8
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Moxie Aerials
lvl.3
Flight distance : 1006342 ft
Canada
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Tmygun Posted at 2017-6-8 02:25
Had an iPad mini 2 Grey, which means it had a black border around the screen.  
Had it out several times and it would work initially and start malfunctioning as time went on.  Finally realized it was a heat issue (80 + F).....AND the black border on the edge of the screen was making that issue worse.
I would cool off the iPad and it would be fine for a few minutes but then would exhibit exactly what you described above.

I figured that may be the case, I have a black lifeproof case on my mini which doesn't allow for much circulation.

As much as you're not selling iPads, I'm going to try that route and see if the problem persists.

Summer is just heating up here in Ontario, so the next few months should be a good testing ground.
2017-6-8
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mtnlandpix
Captain
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United States
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I had a similar issue with a P4 and iPad Mini 2.  Turned out to be the lightning/USB cable.  Make sure you cable is Apple certified. After changing cables my problem disappeared.
2017-6-11
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