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Avoid Crash due to Compass Interference
29744 380 2017-7-11
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MKPSG12
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-1-8 02:18
That is just a short Cut to calibrate, doesn’t mean to calibrate.

Thanks for the clarification, i'll stop calibrating the Spark now!!
2018-1-8
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Elettrone78
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What does it mean when i get uncalibrated after taking flight?
Few days ago i was trying to make a footage from a concrete bridge with a river flowing right behind it, the compass showed normal before taking off and hovering at about 2m but shortly after i moved forwards a couple of meters i got uncalibrated compass...so I couldn't make the flight...used my P4P.
2018-1-8
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TonySparkDrone
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great tip! Thx
2018-1-8
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hallmark007
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Elettrone78 Posted at 2018-1-8 03:56
What does it mean when i get uncalibrated after taking flight?
Few days ago i was trying to make a footage from a concrete bridge with a river flowing right behind it, the compass showed normal before taking off and hovering at about 2m but shortly after i moved forwards a couple of meters i got uncalibrated compass...so I couldn't make the flight...used my P4P.

Concrete is probably your compass worse enemy, your compass may well have taken on parameter of the bridge, and so when it leaves these parameters it takes on different parameters, never calibrate in such areas as this could be detrimental to your spark.
While above is only a guesstimate it is possible for this to happen. Do you happen to have a screenshot of the warning?
2018-1-8
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Elettrone78
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-1-8 04:27
Concrete is probably your compass worse enemy, your compass may well have taken on parameter of the bridge, and so when it leaves these parameters it takes on different parameters, never calibrate in such areas as this could be detrimental to your spark.
While above is only a guesstimate it is possible for this to happen. Do you happen to have a screenshot of the warning?

No screenshots, the compass state just goes from green to red after moving a few meter from the starting point(off bridge and right onto the river). I was using a Phantom 4 Pro.
Unfortunately there is no way to calibrate elsewhere as the takeoff point must be on that bridge for visibility reasons :-/
2018-1-8
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hallmark007
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Elettrone78 Posted at 2018-1-8 04:41
No screenshots, the compass state just goes from green to red after moving a few meter from the starting point(off bridge and right onto the river). I was using a Phantom 4 Pro.
Unfortunately there is no way to calibrate elsewhere as the takeoff point must be on that bridge for visibility reasons :-/

You first may need to go somewhere else to check compass is ok, taking off from the bridge you could try putting down a cardboard box to see if this makes a difference, but if you receive compass problem your aircraft may be difficult to control, but hey it’s yours if you feel you need the shot this way that’s your decision.
Good luck.
2018-1-8
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Elettrone78
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-1-8 04:48
You first may need to go somewhere else to check compass is ok, taking off from the bridge you could try putting down a cardboard box to see if this makes a difference, but if you receive compass problem your aircraft may be difficult to control, but hey it’s yours if you feel you need the shot this way that’s your decision.
Good luck.

Well i’m trained to fly manual so that wouldn’t be an issue, i was wondering if a bad compass calibration has anything to do with manual flight or flyaways.
2018-1-9
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hallmark007
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Elettrone78 Posted at 2018-1-9 04:36
Well i’m trained to fly manual so that wouldn’t be an issue, i was wondering if a bad compass calibration has anything to do with manual flight or flyaways.

Bad calibration has everything to flyaway,
2018-1-9
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hallmark007
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Your welcome, safe flying.
2018-1-9
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Flighty
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I have exactly the same situation every time I fire up the Spark, I accept that the boxed “Calibrate” for the compass as normal. I have no issues during flight. Why the box is not around the “Normal” is strange!
2018-1-10
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MKPSG12
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Flighty Posted at 2018-1-10 03:58
I have exactly the same situation every time I fire up the Spark, I accept that the boxed “Calibrate” for the compass as normal. I have no issues during flight. Why the box is not around the “Normal” is strange!

Its to indicate its a 'button'/selectable option, whereas the 'Normal' is just telling you the status. It does fly in the face of my personal logic though!
2018-1-10
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hallmark007
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Flighty Posted at 2018-1-10 03:58
I have exactly the same situation every time I fire up the Spark, I accept that the boxed “Calibrate” for the compass as normal. I have no issues during flight. Why the box is not around the “Normal” is strange!

I know your right and it can be confusing, same on all dji craft.
2018-1-10
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DJI Grace
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awesome tips!
2018-1-10
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hallmark007
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Thank you dji Grace.
2018-1-11
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DJI Grace
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You really good at this!
I have recommend you to our content team, they also like your work~
2018-1-11
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hallmark007
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DJI Grace Posted at 2018-1-11 18:40
You really good at this!
I have recommend you to our content team, they also like your work~

Thanks dji Grace, anything I can do to help.
2018-1-12
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fans4a22ee86
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How would you know or could tell when to calibrate. Is there a pop up?
2018-1-12
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hallmark007
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fans4a22ee86 Posted at 2018-1-12 11:10
How would you know or could tell when to calibrate. Is there a pop up?

There will be a prompt, it’s not like the usual one you might get , magnetic interference please move or calibrate, all you should do in situation is move your drone.
Message you will get is calibrate compass and in this case you won’t be able to start Aircraft until you calibrate.
2018-1-12
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Madseason
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Very good tips! I do this and usually take off, let hover then fly forward, backward, left and right at about 5 feet. Maybe excessive but tying to be safe.
2018-1-12
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hallmark007
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Madseason Posted at 2018-1-12 15:54
Very good tips! I do this and usually take off, let hover then fly forward, backward, left and right at about 5 feet. Maybe excessive but tying to be safe.

Thank you Madseason, I think this will be good for you. Fly safe.
2018-1-13
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Far_North
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A helpful tip that I will certainly use.   
2018-1-13
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hallmark007
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Far_North Posted at 2018-1-13 05:37
A helpful tip that I will certainly use.

You know it takes such a short time and you will find if you have a problem it will show up then, then just land and take care of it, if everything is good off you go.fly safe.
2018-1-13
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MaxBDS
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Excellent suggestions that, in general, apply to any drone equipped with a compass. I recommend that you DO NOT calibrate the compass just because you receive an alert. Try first to change position and then calibrate if necessary.   You do not need to recalibrate the compass even if you move thousands of kilometers away because the terrestrial magnetic declination change little. If, however, it is necessary to calibrate the compass you must be careful that there are no electromagnetic interference, be away from power lines, iron structures, own car! from the phone! Do not keep the keys in your pocket etc. etc. ;)
MaxBDS
2018-1-13
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hallmark007
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MaxBDS Posted at 2018-1-13 06:35
Excellent suggestions that, in general, apply to any drone equipped with a compass. I recommend that you DO NOT calibrate the compass just because you receive an alert. Try first to change position and then calibrate if necessary.   You do not need to recalibrate the compass even if you move thousands of kilometers away because the terrestrial magnetic declination change little. If, however, it is necessary to calibrate the compass you must be careful that there are no electromagnetic interference, be away from power lines, iron structures, own car! from the phone! Do not keep the keys in your pocket etc. etc. ;)
MaxBDS

I fully agree just back from Sweden 1500 miles compass was perfect, no need for any meddling around, to many unnecessary calibration causing many problems. Safe flying.
2018-1-13
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Spark Kam
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I have a few questions.....

Why is this a recommended thread highlighted in red at the top of the forum page?

Who is hallmark007?

Does hallmark007 work for DJI?

If these tips in this thread are followed to the letter and the Spark does an uncontrolled "Fly Away", will hallmark007 send a replacement? or will DJI? or will the warranty be denied because tip #1 contradicts information that is put out by DJI?

The reason I ask.....A video published on January 14th 2018 by DJI support for the Spark specifically says to CALIBRATE THE COMPASS BEFORE EACH FLIGHT.

Why should a person disregard recommendations from the manufacturer of a product they purchased   and follow some random poster's suggestions?

The video is below and @ 0:47 it says to calibrate the compass before each flight.



2018-1-15
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hallmark007
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Spark Kam Posted at 2018-1-15 11:07
I have a few questions.....

Why is this a recommended thread highlighted in red at the top of the forum page?


I have a couple of questions myself.

Who is spark kam?

Why has he not bothered to read his manual? (If answer is yes he did , did you miss the part about calibrating compass)

Does hallmark work for dji (No)

If these tip are followed to the letter of the law and spark does an uncontrolled flyaway will hallmark send a replacement.
(If your spark does a uncontrollable flyaway dji will replace your Aircraft it’s called warranty)

Why should a person disregard recommendations from the manufacturer of a product they purchased. And follow some random poster.

( are you disregarding your Manual it’s the first thing dji will tell all users to read more than once)
( the random poster has not given any information that is not included in your manual)

Why is this post highlighted in Red, ( I suppose because someone at dji thought it was good advice to users)

Another question I have for you, how many flyaways have you read about where user said he forgot to calibrate his compass before he took off, I haven’t read any, but I have read many where compass was calibrated.
In phantom Mavic and Spark Manual will tell you exactly what I have said In  my OP, if you care to go to those forums you will also see that amongst more experienced drone flyers they also agree with what the manual says.

But having said all that I welcome you to start your own thread advising users to use your methods, which may be a lot better than mine.
2018-1-15
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Spark Kam
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-1-15 11:53
I have a couple of questions myself.

Who is spark kam?

You shouldn't take my post personally because it is directed toward DJI for CLARIFICATION.

Yes, I have read the manual and on page 49 it states similar to what your first tip states BUT...... As shown in my previous post, DJI releases a video YESTERDAY that contradicts that info. So I ask DJI not you, which is it? What instructions are we supposed to follow?
DJI highlighted your post a week ago then follows that with a contradicting video yesterday is the reason I asked on your thread. If that bothered you, Sorry.
As to your last statement:
I don't claim to "Know it All" about DJI products. I come to learn and gain information.
Since I don't work for DJI, I would not tell people how they should operate their products unless I was willing to warranty them myself.
So no, there would be absolutely no reason for me to start a thread about what methods everyone should use when conflicting info is everywhere and I don't know which is correct.  

2018-1-15
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hallmark007
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Spark Kam Posted at 2018-1-15 12:20
You shouldn't take my post personally because it is directed toward DJI for CLARIFICATION.

Yes, I have read the manual and on page 49 it states similar to what your first tip states BUT...... As shown in my previous post, DJI releases a video YESTERDAY that contradicts that info. So I ask DJI not you, which is it? What instructions are we supposed to follow?

I think if you read your post again it certainly looks like it was directed twords me or about me.

The whole demeanor of your thread was aggressive, as if you had discovered something that wasn’t known already and where ready to jump on your high horse and get the battle started.
That video I have seen a long time ago there is similar for Mavic and phantom, I suppose they haven’t given a new script yet.

I not really sure if your just here to pick holes in what other people post, if your not willing to listen take or give advice without warranty being offered for advice given, then why would you be here on the forum, surely that’s what this forum is all about.
I can tell you I have learned a lot more about drones and how they work from users than I have ever learned from dji Moderators, who play a completely different roll here nowadays, and I never would expect any member to warranty my drone, it’s all about responsibility.
2018-1-15
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Raimenzio
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Spark Kam Posted at 2018-1-15 11:07
I have a few questions.....

Why is this a recommended thread highlighted in red at the top of the forum page?

I think this video is quite old, because during calibration procedure it shows to keep drone sideways, not nose down. And in aircraft status window it has calibration boxes, which are no more.
Anyways DJI did a good job on confusing people.
2018-1-15
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llywellyn
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Thank you very much for that tips.
2018-1-15
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hallmark007
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llywellyn Posted at 2018-1-15 13:06
Thank you very much for that tips.

Your welcome.
2018-1-15
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Spark Kam
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-1-15 12:42
I think if you read your post again it certainly looks like it was directed twords me or about me.

The whole demeanor of your thread was aggressive, as if you had discovered something that wasn’t known already and where ready to jump on your high horse and get the battle started.

Again.....My remarks are not towards you. Everything you posted could be 100% correct. I don't know. I read your tips when you first posted them. I replied on your thread because DJI chose to highlight YOUR thread then submit contradicting information yesterday.
It seems you're offended with your "high horse" and "never bothered to read" comments.  Again....I have zero interest battling or debating with you about anything. I'm asking simple questions to DJI NOT you. Which is the proper procedure?
There are endless forums, facebook, groups, message boards, etc....relating to DJI products with self proclaimed experts giving their opinions about everything under the sun which is great.
Believe it or not, when a manufacturer has a forum some people prefer to go that board expecting to get information "directly from the horses mouth" and not some random Joe Blow. I may need to lower my expectations.
The only information I am looking for is the reason some drones fly away or what could be done to prevent it. DJI has not posted this yet or maybe I missed it.
2018-1-15
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hallmark007
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Spark Kam Posted at 2018-1-15 13:43
Again.....My remarks are not towards you. Everything you posted could be 100% correct. I don't know. I read your tips when you first posted them. I replied on your thread because DJI chose to highlight YOUR thread then submit contradicting information yesterday.
It seems you're offended with your "high horse" and "never bothered to read" comments.  Again....I have zero interest battling or debating with you about anything. I'm asking simple questions to DJI NOT you. Which is the proper procedure?
There are endless forums, facebook, groups, message boards, etc....relating to DJI products with self proclaimed experts giving their opinions about everything under the sun which is great.

“Believe it or not, when a manufacturer has a forum some people prefer to go that board expecting to get information "directly from the horses mouth" and not some random Joe Blow. I may need to lower my expectations. “

It’s a bit of an insult to members of this forum , many who have been here since forum began, many who have been involved in building RC aircraft long before dji or its Moderators, and most of them with real hands on experience in flying drones both as hobbyists and professional.
If your only interest is in what dji has to say you can always contact them directly. And once again I will point out to you that this video has been around for a long time.

I’ve seen some of your other posts and I wasn’t wrong it seems you have no problem putting people in their place.
There are many contradictions with dji, drones are complex manual 6 months ago is not the same as it is now and will continue to change, Spark has changed a whole lot since it was first released. Most of the members here are very knowledgeable and always available to help, many know about photography many about software firmware , many know about their aircraft and many about flying, altogether they make up a great and knowledgeable community . You don’t need to lower your expectations because you have to deal with this community,you should be glad you found it.
2018-1-15
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Wachtberger
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-1-15 14:10
“Believe it or not, when a manufacturer has a forum some people prefer to go that board expecting to get information "directly from the horses mouth" and not some random Joe Blow. I may need to lower my expectations. “

It’s a bit of an insult to members of this forum , many who have been here since forum began, many who have been involved in building RC aircraft long before dji or its Moderators, and most of them with real hands on experience in flying drones both as hobbyists and professional.

Thank you for this hallmark007! This is exactly what this forum is about in my opinion, we all learn from each other and give advice when we can. Nothing more, but nothing less either.
2018-1-15
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Firehawk989
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-1-13 06:47
I fully agree just back from Sweden 1500 miles compass was perfect, no need for any meddling around, to many unnecessary calibration causing many problems. Safe flying.

Distance is not a usable factor in this case, as you could travel to the opposite side of the earth and as long as you stayed on the same or close to the same magnetic field lines, you would have no problems.

Your trip had a difference of roughly 9deg in declination depending on where your home in Ireland is to where you traveled in Sweden, which appears to be within an amount the Spark's compass system is able to compensate for. Out of curiosity, did you look at your compass interference level while you were there? Was it higher than at home, even if still green?

Where the problem comes in is if you travel greatly outside your local declination range. For example, I'm off to Japan next week, which is roughly a 26deg difference from my home in BC. I'm looking forward to firing up the Spark once I'm there to see for myself how this will affect the compass interference level and confirm the answer for myself. 2 other users have already confirmed this theory in different parts of the world in this thread: forum.dji.com/forum.php?mod=viewthread&tid=128200 Posts #28 and 29.

Bottom line is, it appears there are some cases where you won't get a prompt from the app, but you should calibrate anyway.

Operating a drone successfully requires that pilots think carefully about the environment they're flying in and pick the best course of action. Trouble is, most people won't get this involved, and that's where we get the "flyaway" problems. Aside from the ones that are caused by some internal error that DJI admits fault to and offers replacement that is; glad they stand behind their product in those cases.
2018-1-15
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hallmark007
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Firehawk989 Posted at 2018-1-15 14:32
Distance is not a usable factor in this case, as you could travel to the opposite side of the earth and as long as you stayed on the same or close to the same magnetic field lines, you would have no problems.

Your trip had a difference of roughly 9deg in declination depending on where your home in Ireland is to where you traveled in Sweden, which appears to be within an amount the Spark's compass system is able to compensate for. Out of curiosity, did you look at your compass interference level while you were there? Was it higher than at home, even if still green?

I fully agree with what your saying and in other posts I would always advise to check compass and if there is large degree of declination then compass should always be calibrated, I have not been in this situation as of yet but I’m heading down to Canary Islands on Thursday, I will see if I get prompted I will also check declination difference before I leave.
I will also be flying a MATRICE for work for two days surveying wind turbines, it’s my first time to do this kind of work outside of UK/Ireland and believe me preflight check list on this bird is as long as your arm and any problems it doesn’t fly.
I will also be taking my spark with me as I’m there for a week

I always check level of interference and in Sweden was no different than Ireland . I realise some have not been prompted when travelling to such areas but was not aware that this would be the situation, that’s why this forum is so useful.
2018-1-15
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Firehawk989
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Indeed; interesting that your compass level was the same, I would've expected at least a small difference in the numbers. I wonder what the threshold is that the IMU/compass can handle before it starts piling up errors and moving up the interference level?

Nice that you can get a week in the Canary Islands for 2 days of work! Enjoy!
2018-1-15
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fans5083b006
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I would also add to check the compass sensor value from DJI Go App. Even without a warning it can be close to be not "green" any more and causing problems. This is what happened to me. The Spark compass is VERY sensetive.
2018-1-24
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hallmark007
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fans5083b006 Posted at 2018-1-24 02:44
I would also add to check the compass sensor value from DJI Go App. Even without a warning it can be close to be not "green" any more and causing problems. This is what happened to me. The Spark compass is VERY sensetive.

Yes I agree with you, this is a very good exercise.
2018-1-24
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talwar
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Is crash with interference covered in the warranty?
2018-1-24
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