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Spark behaved strange after the mandatory update
2215 32 2017-9-2
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Phuong Do
Second Officer
Flight distance : 29800 ft
Vietnam
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This morning, after 1 week storing the batterry. All the firmware are up to date. No-flyzone is updated. Flying on wifi. Everything is official and followed the book.
Pre-flight checked, RTH altitude set. The sensors are checked (all green so I did not calibrate).
I then started the motors, and go up. However, Spark behaved very strange. Even though I pushed up to rise the altitude, Spark kind of resisted and kept jerking up and down. Then suddenly, it landing at a very agreesive speed, Spark hit the ground vertically. The power is still on. Not a single error showed on screen. That was with the battery I left connected with Spark at 100%, and storing for more than a week.
I then changed the other battery, which was also 100% when stored, BUT not connected to Spark when storing. Everything is fine. I can reach ~500m on 2.4 Ghz, and ~300m on 5.8Ghz.
My friend also has the same issue when he stores the batteries for more than a week and use...
I wonder if it is the issue with battery. Anyone got the same issue?

2017-9-2
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tjalex
First Officer
Flight distance : 422375 ft
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Chile
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Spark is a bad idea. i really regret buying the it. it always coming with same issue.
2017-9-3
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JasonMY
lvl.2
Flight distance : 182562 ft
Malaysia
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There have been numerous threads started regarding this problem.

https://forum.dji.com/thread-110626-1-4.html

https://forum.dji.com/forum.php? ... mp;page=1#pid920204

The problem is quite straight forward. It is as if the current is not flowing steadily from the battery into the Spark like how it should be since it is an intelligent/smart battery.

I spoke to a few Spark owners at DJI Spark Group on Facebook who experienced the same problem. Most of them resolved this problem by not using the particular battery and to start a report with DJI regarding it instead.

One or two of my batteries has this problem but it does not always happen. Whenever it does, I just switch it to the good batteries and fly those first and finally when those are depleted, I will simply change it back to the problematic battery and the problem on the batteries will just magically go away.

No sudden power shutdown during mid flight. However, as precautionary measure, I have since stopped using those batteries concerned. You might want to do that as well.

On the other hand, I do not think you will still have 100% after having to store it for a week.  I read somewhere that the battery will discharge gradually.

Hope this helps.
2017-9-3
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Alagapas
lvl.1
Flight distance : 109098 ft
Malaysia
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I had the same issue 2-3 times, latest one just happened yesterday.
2017-9-3
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Andrew Chen
lvl.1
Flight distance : 52428 ft
Taiwan
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same here, already open a case and waiting a response from DJI.
2017-9-3
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PedramN
Second Officer
Iran
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Hello dear users,
is this possible that all short range AC disconnection and communication problems between RC and AC are related to one or two malfunctioning battery cells? you can see that SPARK battery has six golden connection pins and it seems that every cell discharged separately (in race quads we have two main thick wires for discharge and some thin wires for charging) . now, if AC is tuned to use single fixed cell (example cell No.1) for Receiver and communications electronics, then a battery with malfunctioning Cell No.1 will compromise electronics in this section and lost signal problems ie. AC disconnected will pop up. those friends with low signal and short range problems may want to have some eye on this possibility .
2017-9-3
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DJI Diana
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Flight distance : 2408 ft

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I think this issue has nothing to do with the batteries. Have you changed the propellers? Please try other propellers if you have the spare propellers. Besides, I would recommend you export the data for analysis.
2017-9-3
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DJI Diana
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Flight distance : 2408 ft

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Andrew Chen Posted at 2017-9-3 09:39
same here, already open a case and waiting a response from DJI.

Have you provided the data to the Support for analysis? Please provide me your case number so I can look into it.
2017-9-3
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DJI Diana
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Flight distance : 2408 ft

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PedramN Posted at 2017-9-3 11:02
Hello dear users,
is this possible that all short range AC disconnection and communication problems between RC and AC are related to one or two malfunctioning battery cells? you can see that SPARK battery has six golden connection pins and it seems that every cell discharged separately (in race quads we have two main thick wires for discharge and some thin wires for charging) . now, if AC is tuned to use single fixed cell (example cell No.1) for Receiver and communications electronics, then a battery with malfunctioning Cell No.1 will compromise electronics in this section and lost signal problems ie. AC disconnected will pop up. those friends with low signal and short range problems may want to have some eye on this possibility .

I don't think so, the batteries are intelligent flight batteries, you'll get an error if one of the battery cells is malfunctioning. Besides, I do not think the battery is doing anything with the communication between the RC and AC.
2017-9-3
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DJI Diana
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Alagapas Posted at 2017-9-3 08:44
I had the same issue 2-3 times, latest one just happened yesterday.

Have you tried other propellers? Please have a try if you have spare propellers. If it is the same, please export the data for analysis. Thank you in advance.
2017-9-3
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Andrew Chen
lvl.1
Flight distance : 52428 ft
Taiwan
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DJI Diana Posted at 2017-9-3 19:16
Have you provided the data to the Support for analysis? Please provide me your case number so I can look into it.

Hi Diana my case number is CAS-955857-F7V8F4
Thanks for asking.
2017-9-3
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DJI Diana
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Andrew Chen Posted at 2017-9-3 19:47
Hi Diana my case number is CAS-955857-F7V8F4
Thanks for asking.

Just checked it, we've submitted a data analysis for this case, it is under process now, will have someone contact you once it is finished.
2017-9-4
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sibu
Captain
Flight distance : 322454 ft
India
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Can you please advice how to open a case with DJI on the SPARK issue ?
2017-9-5
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Fractures
lvl.4
Flight distance : 635531 ft
United States
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DJI Diana Posted at 2017-9-3 19:18
I think this issue has nothing to do with the batteries. Have you changed the propellers? Please try other propellers if you have the spare propellers. Besides, I would recommend you export the data for analysis. DJI Quick Tips - Spark - Exporting the Flight Data

Hey Diana,

Thanks for chiming in. As you probably read this problem is occurring on certain batteries and not on other batteries, how could propellers have an impact on this, or are you saying that it is a coincidence?  It seems odd that the props would be fine on some flights and not others?
2017-9-14
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DJI Diana
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sibu Posted at 2017-9-5 06:14
Can you please advice how to open a case with DJI on the SPARK issue ?

Have you got it sorted out? If not, please refer to this link to contact the Support, they'll help you to start a case. http://www.dji.com/support
2017-9-14
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DJI Diana
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Fractures Posted at 2017-9-14 17:29
Hey Diana,

Thanks for chiming in. As you probably read this problem is occurring on certain batteries and not on other batteries, how could propellers have an impact on this, or are you saying that it is a coincidence?  It seems odd that the props would be fine on some flights and not others?

Generally speaking, the battery won't have an impact on this issue. I would recommend you try what I suggested in the post 10# if you have the same issue.
2017-9-14
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Phuong Do
Second Officer
Flight distance : 29800 ft
Vietnam
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DJI Diana Posted at 2017-9-14 22:49
Generally speaking, the battery won't have an impact on this issue. I would recommend you try what I suggested in the post 10# if you have the same issue.

Hi DJI Diana,
On the contrary, I am 100% sure that this is the battery issue (what kind of issue I don't know, maybe the unbalance charging in cells), but after 2 times of fully discharge and re-charge, the problem gone. And the other 2 batteries never got this kind of issue (So it cannot be Spark issues, because if it is, it should behave the same for all batteries).
Again, no matter what you say, I am 100% sure it is the battery.
P.S: it is not propellers. I always check the propellers every single time I take off.
Thanks anyway,
2017-9-15
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DJI Susan
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Phuong Do Posted at 2017-9-15 05:31
Hi DJI Diana,
On the contrary, I am 100% sure that this is the battery issue (what kind of issue I don't know, maybe the unbalance charging in cells), but after 2 times of fully discharge and re-charge, the problem gone. And the other 2 batteries never got this kind of issue (So it cannot be Spark issues, because if it is, it should behave the same for all batteries).
Again, no matter what you say, I am 100% sure it is the battery.

Just to verify, you have changed the propellers, but the issue remains, right? If yes, please refer the tutorial video and export all the data for analysis.

2017-9-16
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Kloo Gee
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United States
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You mention the batteries were stored for more than 1 week without usage.  How long exactly was it since their last charge?  

After a period of 10 days, the Spark's batteries will automatically start discharging themselves down in an effort to keep them at peak health for the long term.  Is it possible your "more than a week" period was 10 days or more?

I would highly recommend you to try charging your batteries again before trying to use them if they haven't been used for a period of more than a few days.  
2017-9-16
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HarleyDrone
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United States
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I've been tempted to purchase a DJI product, but the price put me right off until Spark came along.
After reading around and watching YT videos, there seems to be some serious flaws with the Spark.
I've had mine over 2 weeks now, updated to the so called mandatory"Safety" firmware  and so far have been too worried of wrecking my 500 dollar investment in an instance. Until these flaws are ironed out, its staying in its box! I don't want a lawsuit!
Are these safe to fly?? If this was an automobile, there would be recalls.
2017-9-18
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Charles Adams
Second Officer
Flight distance : 243140 ft
United States
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HarleyDrone Posted at 2017-9-18 08:13
I've been tempted to purchase a DJI product, but the price put me right off until Spark came along.
After reading around and watching YT videos, there seems to be some serious flaws with the Spark.
I've had mine over 2 weeks now, updated to the so called mandatory"Safety" firmware  and so far have been too worried of wrecking my 500 dollar investment in an instance. Until these flaws are ironed out, its staying in its box! I don't want a lawsuit!

Just my opinion:  Yes they are safe to fly.  If they were an automobile, they would not have faced any different threshold (recall).

You are observing a lot of individuals who have had poor experiences, and they are reporting on those experiences.  It is not uncommon that a negative experience provides motivation to report on that experience.  It is rare that a positive experience motivates an individual to put the same effort into reporting on it.

My experience with the drone has been entirely positive.  My only complaint that I would prefer DJI to be more forthcoming about the various issues that have been reported and the results of their analysis.

When reviewing the various cases here about dissatisfied customers and their flight experience, I have found that there has been a lot of user error (or user choices) which contribute to poor experiences.  There have been some experiences for which I had no explanation other than possible system failure, but most of the cases include a human factor in the outcome.

Where "human factor" has been pointed out, some have decided to take it as an insult.  Others have taken the council graciously and decided to learn from the experience.

If you fly carefully (and within your limits), if you follow the drone regulations, if you read and follow the manuals, I think you are going to have a great time with your drone.
2017-9-18
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RuneRider
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Canada
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Charles Adams Posted at 2017-9-18 08:30
Just my opinion:  Yes they are safe to fly.  If they were an automobile, they would not have faced any different threshold (recall).

You are observing a lot of individuals who have had poor experiences, and they are reporting on those experiences.  It is not uncommon that a negative experience provides motivation to report on that experience.  It is rare that a positive experience motivates an individual to put the same effort into reporting on it.

I certainly agree that user error will be a root cause of some issues, however the number of similar and identical reports of various issues point to flaws in the product.

I've never had a successful flight of my spark. I've had hardware issues that somehow fixed themselves despite a critical error showing, constant connectivity problems, a need to calibrate every single time I want to fly and battery problems that a friend "fixed" somehow with his drone. Now both the android app and PC software are completely broken.

Having a good experience in no way makes the very obvious issues any less real. I'm glad you've had no problems but that is only your experience.
2017-9-18
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Charles Adams
Second Officer
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United States
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RuneRider Posted at 2017-9-18 08:49
I certainly agree that user error will be a root cause of some issues, however the number of similar and identical reports of various issues point to flaws in the product.

I've never had a successful flight of my spark. I've had hardware issues that somehow fixed themselves despite a critical error showing, constant connectivity problems, a need to calibrate every single time I want to fly and battery problems that a friend "fixed" somehow with his drone. Now both the android app and PC software are completely broken.

You are right, and if you have had the opposite observation (not a single positive flight), your frustration is well founded.

RuneRider, I'm not able to clearly link your name to your issues (though I'm sure you've reported them elsewhere).  If you don't mind recapping, what are the issues you face?  Forced calibration every flight (battery or IMU)?  What else?
2017-9-18
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RuneRider
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Canada
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Charles Adams Posted at 2017-9-18 08:55
You are right, and if you have had the opposite observation (not a single positive flight), your frustration is well founded.

RuneRider, I'm not able to clearly link your name to your issues (though I'm sure you've reported them elsewhere).  If you don't mind recapping, what are the issues you face?  Forced calibration every flight (battery or IMU)?  What else?

When I first bought the spark (in early July) updating firmware took days and required a call to Dji as the software crashed constantly. When I finally updated the firmware the update to the batteries would not work. Had someone with experience look at the batteries, I think they used their drone to update the battery FW. After calibration and updates every attempted take-off resulted in a flipped over drone immediately (props are fine, have been changed several times).  Now a critical error showed up and flight was impossible. Opened a repair ticket, received shipping labels, critical error disappeared for no apparent reason.  I cancelled the repair and successfully updated to the newest FW. I had a nearly successful flight if not for the spark being difficult to control despite both calibrations. Now I constantly calibrate before attempting flight. Still having issues and the latest app has made them worse. The DJI Assistant 2 software now will not talk to my spark at all.
2017-9-18
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Charles Adams
Second Officer
Flight distance : 243140 ft
United States
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RuneRider Posted at 2017-9-18 09:35
When I first bought the spark (in early July) updating firmware took days and required a call to Dji as the software crashed constantly. When I finally updated the firmware the update to the batteries would not work. Had someone with experience look at the batteries, I think they used their drone to update the battery FW. After calibration and updates every attempted take-off resulted in a flipped over drone immediately (props are fine, have been changed several times).  Now a critical error showed up and flight was impossible. Opened a repair ticket, received shipping labels, critical error disappeared for no apparent reason.  I cancelled the repair and successfully updated to the newest FW. I had a nearly successful flight if not for the spark being difficult to control despite both calibrations. Now I constantly calibrate before attempting flight. Still having issues and the latest app has made them worse. The DJI Assistant 2 software now will not talk to my spark at all.

Yep, that's quite the list.  Each one merits detailed analysis and conversation.  The one that jumps out at me (the one for which I have direct experience) is the one least likely to help you with flights, but let's start there.

I've had exactly the same issue with my DJI Assistant 2 app, where it stopped recognizing the spark.  It identified the spark as something entirely different (and I didn't take a screenshot).  I even had difficulties uninstalling the assistant app so that I could try a re-install.  I ended up going back to a restore point (I'm on Windows), where I was able to try a reinstall of the DJI Assistant 2 App.  And that's what finally worked for me.

There was a new version released on 9/7 (v1.1.6), I'm not sure of what version you are currently on.  I decided I wouldn't run an "update", I instead uninstalled the prior version and installed 1.1.6.  I had no issues and the app still recognized the spark.

That first episode I had, I have no explanation for why it behaved that way, and I have no explanation why I had to go back to a prior restore point.  But it's how I addressed the situation.

I recommend attempting to uninstall your app, and installing it again (latest version if that's not the version you already had).  And then try with the spark (if you've not shipped it already.  If that solves your problem, we'll move on to the next problem.  If that doesn't solve your problem, there may be some deeper steps we can go into.  I found that when installing the assistant, there's a new driver that it installs.  Might be that you are having issues with that driver (if you are running on windows, if a mac then I have to bail as I have no mac experience).
2017-9-18
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RuneRider
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Canada
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Charles Adams Posted at 2017-9-18 09:48
Yep, that's quite the list.  Each one merits detailed analysis and conversation.  The one that jumps out at me (the one for which I have direct experience) is the one least likely to help you with flights, but let's start there.

I've had exactly the same issue with my DJI Assistant 2 app, where it stopped recognizing the spark.  It identified the spark as something entirely different (and I didn't take a screenshot).  I even had difficulties uninstalling the assistant app so that I could try a re-install.  I ended up going back to a restore point (I'm on Windows), where I was able to try a reinstall of the DJI Assistant 2 App.  And that's what finally worked for me.

I removed the software more than once and did both a reinstall of the previous version and a fresh install of 1.1.6. My solution to this particular issue is in the other thread. Today is the first time it cropped up.
2017-9-18
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kn8alpha_DJI
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Flight distance : 30636 ft
United States
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I have this sudden altitude drop as well, during Spark takeoff it drops suddenly by 0.5 meter and then goes back up, does this oscillation about 2 or 3 times for about 5 seconds, then becomes a bit stable and then hovers just fine. . I posted a video of the issue in Facebook group and someone suspected the battery. So I hence labelled my batteries #1-good, #2-bad.  This is the pattern / use-cases so far:

> 0/6 flights using batt#1 had issues
> 3/4 flights using batt#2 had issue on takeoff
> 3/3 flights used batt#2 as first battery of the session, i.e. no immediate previous flights, so both battery and craft were 'cold'. In my region, ambient temperature is always above 25 degree Celsius, not really "cold".
> No visible drop in altitude using batt#2 anytime during flight, even in Sports mode and climbing vertically. Didn't do a fair comparison yet with batt#1.

2017-10-4
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El Diablo
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Germany
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2017-10-4
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Fly with a Tie
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Mexico
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Hello there.. i had the same issue yesterday for the first time.. I was really worried, Spark dropped 3 or 4 times from at least 2 meters and smashed to the ground (the rubber protections below worked perfectly). I recalibrated the RC, IMU, Compass, etc and the problems were still there. I changed battery and flight with no problems and lots of caution. Then I charged both batteries (the one that presented issues was 50% remaining) and seems that the issue was fixed.. My footage was not exactly what I was looking for because I was very afraid to a sudden drop to the sea.

I have been using Spark for 3 weeks now and I can tell that the system is not very reliable... there is always one kind of issue if it is not the battery, is the RC, or the gimbal, or the IMU or compass, or the SD card... every time I turn on my Spark I pray to the lords that everything is good to go. This is my first drone, i don't know if all DJI drones have the same issues but to be honest the experience is kind of a thrill with the uncertainty if it's going to fly away or auto crash..

I will upload my flight logs and data for revision... hope to get answers soon because I am finally having that trip I got de Spark for and I don't want to loose it overseas...
2017-10-15
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rashmendis
lvl.1
Flight distance : 778 ft
Sri Lanka
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It happened to me around 5 times. Guys any fix for this before it crashes itself?
1-14 20:21
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gmozo
Second Officer
United States
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when did this dji update happen because  i haven't flew my drone since last week but thanks for letting me know about the update
1-14 20:39
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gmozo
Second Officer
United States
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when did this dji update happen because  i haven't flew my drone since last week but thanks for letting me know about the update
1-14 20:39
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ArnoSpark
First Officer
Kenya
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gmozo Posted at 1-14 20:39
when did this dji update happen because  i haven't flew my drone since last week but thanks for letting me know about the update

Hey in case you didn't notice this post was done in 2017-9-2
1-15 01:30
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