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Spark - Compass Error / Yaw Error / Speed Error
1223 20 2018-2-3
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Anom3
lvl.3
Poland
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So, been flying drones for about 3 years now. Have a DIYed Pixhawk TBS Discovery running.

Recently bought a Spark. Mainly because since its under 600g, I can legally fly it out of the backyard of my home.

Today. all of this in sport mode, all over farm fields where any sign of cilvilzation is behind me:

First flight : Flew out about 300m in sport mode. I then made a 180 degree turn back, and started flying back. All of it at max throttle. Got a "Compass Error". It switched to ATTI mode for a BRIEF second. Then back to GPS and all was well.

Second flight : Came home, calibrated the compass. In a proper location with no large metal items near by. Went out. Same as first flight. Plus I got a brief Yaw Error after the 180 degree turn. Quick switch to ATTI then right back to GPS and all was well. According to the phatom log viewer, the compass error lasted 2 seconds.  The yaw error, of which there were 2 sets last 1 second and 0.2 seconds.

Third flight : Stayed closer this time. 150m. Lots of zigging around. Got a Speed Error. Brief ATTI, then back to GPS. The speed errors, of which there were 2, lasted 0.5 seconds and 0.2 seconds each.

---

Is this normal behavior?

I pulled all these "errors" via the phantompilots log viewer.

The switches into ATTI are VERY short. Pretty much unnoticable on the controller. In the logs, when viewed via phantompilots log viewer, they last between 1 "frame" (0.1-0.2sec) to 2.0 secs.

I am starting to think this is because of sports mode fast direction changes? Am I wrong? Got me a bit worried since in my last 3 flights (out of a total of 6 with the spark) during each flight I saw a ATTI mode pop up :/

Note : Maybe this had something to do with it - It was fairly cold today... About -1 to +1c...
2018-2-3
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eYeSkYeYe
Captain

Croatia
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That should NOT be the normal behavior but it's known issue. I can also reproduce "yaw error" on demand in sports mode.
I am not bothered with switching to ATTI as I only do tight turns when flying for fun and in direct visual contact with the bird, not FPV.
2018-2-3
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Anom3
lvl.3
Poland
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eYeSkYeYe Posted at 2018-2-3 13:16
That should NOT be the normal behavior but it's known issue. I can also reproduce "yaw error" on demand in sports mode.
I am not bothered with switching to ATTI as I only do tight turns when flying for fun and in direct visual contact with the bird, not FPV.

Heya.

Thanks for the quick reply, appreciate it.

I can handle the yaw errors (and speed errors I suppose)... As they are basically user inflicted and I am fairly sure the bird will recover if I let off the sticks and let it float for a bit.

Its the compass errors that got me worried
2018-2-3
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eYeSkYeYe
Captain

Croatia
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Anom3 Posted at 2018-2-3 13:19
Heya.

Thanks for the quick reply, appreciate it.

Sometimes things can get even worse actually. I've also experienced complete loss of video link at like maybe 30-40m distance and it took a good second or two for the spark to come to itself. CAN'T reproduce that on demand so no relevant info why and how.

I NEVER experienced, but there are also reports on the forum, of complete loss of control over the bird.
Somebody called it "yaw error" kiss of death as it always starts with "yaw error" and than situation escalates. It seems that level of escalation varies wildly in wide range of cases from benign glitches like in yours and mine case to flyaways in most extreme cases.
2018-2-3
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Anom3
lvl.3
Poland
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Well damn that really sucks.

Aside from the light weight of the spark, the next main reason I bought it because I expected a fairly flawless mariage of hardware and software.
2018-2-3
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eYeSkYeYe
Captain

Croatia
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Anom3 Posted at 2018-2-3 13:36
Well damn that really sucks.

Aside from the light weight of the spark, the next main reason I bought it because I expected a fairly flawless mariage of hardware and software.

Every marriage has crisis....
2018-2-3
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hallmark007
Captain
Flight distance : 4152854 ft
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Ireland
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Can you put up your phantomhelp log?
2018-2-3
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SparkY7
New
Sweden
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I have the exact same issue. I can't remember i got this on the 600 firmware or earlier. Is this problem only with the newest firmware or has it always been there?
2018-2-3
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Anom3
lvl.3
Poland
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No point in sharing my phantom log as all the info except for the errors is correct. Battery all is good. I mean... The phantom logs don't exactly show THAT much detail.

Just did a flight today... No compass error.

Maybe, and just maybe... this is the fix:

Last night I did a downgrade to 701. Then I thought about it and returned to 900. After returning to 900 I did a "reset to factory defaults". Maybe this resets the compass offsets to as they were when it left the factory?
2018-2-4
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Strobing_NYC_Spark
First Officer
Flight distance : 3866470 ft
United States
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I think the true test is to fly full speed in sport mode and then do a very sharp turn. This seems to put the spark into ATTI mode sometimes.
2018-2-6
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hallmark007
Captain
Flight distance : 4152854 ft
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Ireland
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Strobing_NYC_Spark Posted at 2018-2-6 11:34
I think the true test is to fly full speed in sport mode and then do a very sharp turn. This seems to put the spark into ATTI mode sometimes.

Although we have seen this occurring in sport mode, the truth is we have seen this as much in P mode as we have in sport mode and I would hazard a guess more in P than sport.
2018-2-6
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Effie
lvl.2
Flight distance : 240535 ft
United States
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This is my main issue with the Spark, I got a replacement one after loosing mine to "compass error". The new one have the same issues, in almost every flight I'm getting an error, most of the time for a few seconds before it's back in GPS mode. This happened in California as well as last week in Wisconsin, so can't be the location. I am at the point where I really can't trust it and I'll probably end up loosing the Spark sooner or later. I try to keep it in line of sight but when it's up there and you are glancing at the screen you may loose it in the sky for some time. Once during an RTH operation it aborted for few seconds with the same error before resuming and landing successfully. Something is defiantly wrong with this drone.
2018-2-11
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eYeSkYeYe
Captain

United States
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It's not just Spark.... it's M200/M210 issue as well. And these are PRO grade birds.
2018-2-11
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PedramN
Second Officer
Iran
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Hi, dear folks. After some review on same reports in forum, it seems that many of this fly-aways are in sport mode and in high throttle while recording video simultaneously. It seems that high electrical current that flows through motors in sport mode and high throttle , bugs the sensitive compass and leads to compass and yaw errors. Possibly some better calculations on this effect and considering them in firmware can eliminate some of these flyaways. Such as Compassmot in PixHawk FC. Regards.
2018-2-11
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eYeSkYeYe
Captain

United States
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PedramN Posted at 2018-2-11 11:11
Hi, dear folks. After some review on same reports in forum, it seems that many of this fly-aways are in sport mode and in high throttle while recording video simultaneously. It seems that high electrical current that flows through motors in sport mode and high throttle , bugs the sensitive compass and leads to compass and yaw errors. Possibly some better calculations on this effect and considering them in firmware can eliminate some of these flyaways. Such as Compassmot in PixHawk FC. Regards.

See here:
https://forum.dji.com/forum.php? ... amp;fromuid=1362614

DJI is well aware of the problem. PRO equipment probably will get a fix, not sure about Spark, tho...
2018-2-11
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warrenski
Second Officer
South Africa
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Effie Posted at 2018-2-11 10:47
This is my main issue with the Spark, I got a replacement one after loosing mine to "compass error". The new one have the same issues, in almost every flight I'm getting an error, most of the time for a few seconds before it's back in GPS mode. This happened in California as well as last week in Wisconsin, so can't be the location. I am at the point where I really can't trust it and I'll probably end up loosing the Spark sooner or later. I try to keep it in line of sight but when it's up there and you are glancing at the screen you may loose it in the sky for some time. Once during an RTH operation it aborted for few seconds with the same error before resuming and landing successfully. Something is defiantly wrong with this drone.

DItto. My first one flew away, and was luckily replaced under warranty. The new one, on every flight, frequently results in "compass error" when flown far away from any possible interference. Also do not trust it at all, I'm even more paranoid now when flying, spending a good few minutes when taking off making sure that all the aircraft's parameters are normal.
2018-2-11
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Effie
lvl.2
Flight distance : 240535 ft
United States
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Forgot to mention in my post, all the errors I have are not in sport mode.
2018-2-11
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Ricky Aerial Photography
lvl.4
Hong Kong
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So many complicated and sensitive electronic components, all put into a very tight air frame. Vibrations, interference and heat cooling are big challenges to engineers. Spark is not much bigger than a mobile phone and its capabilities are many times more complicated then a mobile phone. Spark, I guess, has design fault to make it dangerous and unreliable to fly.
DJI engineers successfully put all these hi-tech capabilities into this small little bird, is already a world wonder. This is not come without a prize. Unfortunately we, as proud Spark owners, have to suffer from serious quality issues of this wonderful design.
2018-2-11
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Ricky Aerial Photography
lvl.4
Hong Kong
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I am proud to learn that the founder of DJI that dominates the world consumer drone market by 70% and more., received his post graduation education in Hong Kong and as a result, founded DJI. Hong Kong is my place of growing up. His intelligence, creativity and innovative ideas, impresses me and many other Hong Kongers. But DJI handles the complains of proud Spark owners, makes me disappointed. DJI never admits Spark may have design faults given so many "accidents" reported daily in the forum. By referencing to other companies, such as Apple, GoPro, Huawei, etc., on how to handle product defects, DJI has very much to learn from them.
As I pointed out in other posts, if DJI keeps ignoring the complains of proud Spark owners, the goodwill of DJI may become zero or even negative goodwill (on accounting terms). Who will fly a drone that may suddenly disconnect, flyaway, drop dead etc?
2018-2-11
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eelco
lvl.2
Flight distance : 1091447 ft
Netherlands
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warrenski Posted at 2018-2-11 11:38
DItto. My first one flew away, and was luckily replaced under warranty. The new one, on every flight, frequently results in "compass error" when flown far away from any possible interference. Also do not trust it at all, I'm even more paranoid now when flying, spending a good few minutes when taking off making sure that all the aircraft's parameters are normal.

Hello, i lost my drone with the same errors and can not find it anymore. Yaw error and compas error and fly away after that.
You got yours replaced? thats great, i have good hopes for mine now.... fingers crossed
2018-6-28
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DMX_MT
Captain

Malta
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eelco Posted at 2018-6-28 13:59
Hello, i lost my drone with the same errors and can not find it anymore. Yaw error and compas error and fly away after that.
You got yours replaced? thats great, i have good hopes for mine now.... fingers crossed


Hey Eelco,

Even though you have 58,751 Flight Distance...

Read this it will help - https://forum.dji.com/thread-151297-1-1.html

It was done for New Pilots, but can serve also for other Pilots who don't know how to handle ATTI Mode, etc.

Hope you find it interesting.

Good luck on your Replacement !



2018-6-28
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