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DJI Go vs. DJI GO 4 and Disabling "Smart Return Home" Feature.
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BengalBoy
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I just got through flying my Phantom 4 with the new DJI GO 4 app and noticed the "Smart Return Home" feature has been removed from the MC Settings.  It is critical that I know how to disable this on this new app as I fly from boats with changing home points.  I lost my first Phantom 4 shooting a moving boat when suddenly my new Phantom flew away back to the launch point over 2 miles away.  I later came to learn "Smart Return Home" was the new feature that made it fly away.  The only reference I see referring to "Smart Return Home" on the new DJI GO 4 app is now in the "Visual Navigation Settings" and is a switch to turn on object avoidance during return home, labeled, "Turn on Smart Return Home".  Can some one from DJI confirm this enables/disables the "Smart Return Home" function where the Phantom 4 will automatically enter RTH when it detects the battery has reached maximum discharge and still Return Home??  Its critical I understand that it is more than just enabling object avoidance when engaged in "Smart Return Home"..  
2017-1-7
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BengalBoy
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Bump! Can anyone from DJI answer this question regarding DJI Go 4 app for me?
2017-1-9
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fansb1fe1104
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-9 19:18
Bump! Can anyone from DJI answer this question regarding DJI Go 4 app for me?

From what I understand DJI Go 4 is more for the P4 pro. You can still use DJI Go 3 and the option is still there.
2017-1-9
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Aardvark
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-9 19:18
Bump! Can anyone from DJI answer this question regarding DJI Go 4 app for me?

If you read the manual Pages 13 & 14 you will find the exact meaning of 'smart return to home'. Smart return to home is the function where you push the RTH button on RC or tap the RTH icon on the display screen to tell the aircraft to RTH..
There is also low battery RTH, when the battery reaches the point where it thinks it has just enough power to return home, you will get a warning on screen, and you have 10 seconds in which you can cancel this. I believe this might be the one you are referring to. If you are continually changing 'Home Point' then it will return to that home point should any RTH occur.
Then there is loss of signal RTH, where it can RTH, Hover, or land , depending on what you've set in DJI Go.
DJI Go 4 is just as much for the P4 as the P4 Pro, Mavic, Inspire 2 etc. So shouldn't be any problems there.
If you look in the 'main controller Settings' menu and then go to 'advanced settings' you can switch on or off 'smart RTH', for some reason this is only true for IOS version, the option to switch off smart RTH is not there in Android version. You can also tell it what to do if signal lost. If you're floating about in a boat with the aircraft close by then 'hover' might be the best option. Then you could wait for signal, or move boat to aircraft close by.

Best idea is go to a big open field, take off, and then walk a few hundred yards with aircraft following (pretend you're in a boat), and test out all the possible scenarios and what needs to be done for each to ensure aircraft is safe.
2017-1-10
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BengalBoy
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Yes, I'm using Android and the option is not in the Advanced Menu of Main Controller settings.  I experienced a "fly away" and finally a lost Phantom 4 not understanding the "Smart Return Home" feature.  Again, shooting from a moving object and moving away from your original home point will result in a sudden fly away with no control once it initiates.  I did not have an option to cancel when it occurred, but, that was early in the Phantom 4 entry to the market.  Watching your Phantom 4 fly along your speeding dive boat and suddenly stop, shoot up to RTH altitude and then fly in the opposite direction from the boat your riding in is a pretty gut-wrenching situation.  However, watching it land in the Gulf of Mexico over 2 miles away was pretty impressive.   I suppose I will just continue to use the DJI Go app instead of migrating to the DJI Go 4 until someone from DJI can confirm the "Smart Return Home" button in Sensor settings actually disables the feature itself and not just the object avoidance.  I'll be getting a Mavic PRO soon and think I'm supposed to use the new DJI GO 4 app with it.  Got to know how to turn SRH off before flying on the water.
2017-1-10
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Aardvark
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-10 22:19
Yes, I'm using Android and the option is not in the Advanced Menu of Main Controller settings.  I experienced a "fly away" and finally a lost Phantom 4 not understanding the "Smart Return Home" feature.  Again, shooting from a moving object and moving away from your original home point will result in a sudden fly away with no control once it initiates.  I did not have an option to cancel when it occurred, but, that was early in the Phantom 4 entry to the market.  Watching your Phantom 4 fly along your speeding dive boat and suddenly stop, shoot up to RTH altitude and then fly in the opposite direction from the boat your riding in is a pretty gut-wrenching situation.  However, watching it land in the Gulf of Mexico over 2 miles away was pretty impressive.   I suppose I will just continue to use the DJI Go app instead of migrating to the DJI Go 4 until someone from DJI can confirm the "Smart Return Home" button in Sensor settings actually disables the feature itself and not just the object avoidance.  I'll be getting a Mavic PRO soon and think I'm supposed to use the new DJI GO 4 app with it.  Got to know how to turn SRH off before flying on the water.

What caused the loss of your P4 previously, was it that the home point had not been updated since take off, and a 'low battery RTH' ( this is not 'smart RTH' ) made it fly back to original home point ?

Or did you push the RTH button (or icon), which is 'smart RTH' ?

Either way, if the original set home point was two miles away then that's where it was going, not a fly away. The RTH could have been cancelled by pushing RTH button on controller briefly.

Switching off smart RTH may not make flying over water any safer for you.

2017-1-11
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Nigel_
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I've never tested this option, but am I correct in thinking that "Disabling "Smart Return Home"" disables your ability to cancel the RTH height gain when above 20m, disables your ability to control the aircraft height while it is returning home in "RTH" mode and disables your ability to control the position and orientation while in "Landing" mode?    Not convinced about that last one, has anyone tested it?

It does not prevent the aircraft from entering RTH mode on low battery which is what the OP thinks it does...
2017-1-11
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Aardvark
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Nigel_ Posted at 2017-1-11 06:41
I've never tested this option, but am I correct in thinking that "Disabling "Smart Return Home"" disables your ability to cancel the RTH height gain when above 20m, disables your ability to control the aircraft height while it is returning home in "RTH" mode and disables your ability to control the position and orientation while in "Landing" mode?    Not convinced about that last one, has anyone tested it?

It does not prevent the aircraft from entering RTH mode on low battery which is what the OP thinks it does...

"It does not prevent the aircraft from entering RTH mode on low battery which is what the OP thinks it does..."

That's exactly how I read it.

2017-1-11
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BengalBoy
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The Phantom 4 cannot update its position from the original home point like my Phantom 2 Vision+ did when using it on the open ocean.  Dynamic home point on the Vision+ was constantly changing my home point based upon the location of my GPS device.  The Phantom 4 doesn't have "dynamic home point" feature, at least it didn't at the introduction, and required you to reset your home point from within the settings of the DJI Go app.  I could never get this to work for me when I tried pushing that setting button to re-assign my home point to my new location.  On 2 occasions I had my Phantom 4 suddenly stop and fly away while filming moving boats on the water.  The first time I was able to turn around and follow the drone back to the original launch site where I regained control on its descent.  I posted here about the incident and no one responded with any idea what could cause that failure.  My only information was a brief message on screen basically "battery error RTH".  I speculated it was a battery malfunction happening during aggressive Sport Mode flying due to heat or some other issue.  I thought it was maybe a phenomena because I was very confident flying my Phantom 2 Vision+ over the ocean.  I went on a dive trip out in the Gulf of Mexico with my Phantom 4 and shot the dive site which was a sunken ship with no issues.  However, on our return I was videoing the boat at speed using my Phantom 4 in Sport mode.  With more than 50% battery life left, my Phantom 4 suddenly stopped, displayed the error message regarding battery and shot to RTH altitude and began to return to the original launch site back at the ship wreck.   Trying to reset home point within the app would not work.  We all watched the Phantom 4 fly off with no control and eventually land itself over 2 miles back at the original launch site.  I pressed every button and anything that said "cancel", pressed the RTH key till my thumb was sore.  No avail, it flew back home because "Smart Return Home" was enabled and the Phantom 4 knew it had traveled as far as it could possibly go and still have enough battery to return safely.   Believing it was a fly away I uploaded all my logs, went round and round with DJI regarding the battery life remaining, etc., before I finally began to understand what DJI engineers were telling me, it did what it was supposed to based upon batter life remaining and distance to RTH.  So, I tested this feature extensively on the water when I got my 2nd Phantom 4 and it is exactly what my issue was.  I recently returned from a week flying on the open ocean in Komodo and can testify to my success there as well while navigating with "Smart Return Home" disabled.
2017-1-11
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Labroides
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-11 18:52
The Phantom 4 cannot update its position from the original home point like my Phantom 2 Vision+ did when using it on the open ocean.  Dynamic home point on the Vision+ was constantly changing my home point based upon the location of my GPS device.  The Phantom 4 doesn't have "dynamic home point" feature, at least it didn't at the introduction, and required you to reset your home point from within the settings of the DJI Go app.  I could never get this to work for me when I tried pushing that setting button to re-assign my home point to my new location.  On 2 occasions I had my Phantom 4 suddenly stop and fly away while filming moving boats on the water.  The first time I was able to turn around and follow the drone back to the original launch site where I regained control on its descent.  I posted here about the incident and no one responded with any idea what could cause that failure.  My only information was a brief message on screen basically "battery error RTH".  I speculated it was a battery malfunction happening during aggressive Sport Mode flying due to heat or some other issue.  I thought it was maybe a phenomena because I was very confident flying my Phantom 2 Vision+ over the ocean.  I went on a dive trip out in the Gulf of Mexico with my Phantom 4 and shot the dive site which was a sunken ship with no issues.  However, on our return I was videoing the boat at speed using my Phantom 4 in Sport mode.  With more than 50% battery life left, my Phantom 4 suddenly stopped, displayed the error message regarding battery and shot to RTH altitude and began to return to the original launch site back at the ship wreck.   Trying to reset home point within the app would not work.  We all watched the Phantom 4 fly off with no control and eventually land itself over 2 miles back at the original launch site.  I pressed every button and anything that said "cancel", pressed the RTH key till my thumb was sore.  No avail, it flew back home because "Smart Return Home" was enabled and the Phantom 4 knew it had traveled as far as it could possibly go and still have enough battery to return safely.   Believing it was a fly away I uploaded all my logs, went round and round with DJI regarding the battery life remaining, etc., before I finally began to understand what DJI engineers were telling me, it did what it was supposed to based upon batter life remaining and distance to RTH.  So, I tested this feature extensively on the water when I got my 2nd Phantom 4 and it is exactly what my issue was.  I recently returned from a week flying on the open ocean in Komodo and can testify to my success there as well while navigating with "Smart Return Home" disabled.

So simply reset your home location from time to time when you are on a moving boat.
You can set it to the Phantom's location any time it nearby so that home is now close to you rather than two miles back.
Or if your phone/tablet has GPS you can set it to your location.
Don't run your battery down low over water and practice cancelling RTH.
2017-1-11
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BengalBoy
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Its not that easy to get in your menu and constantly reset your home position.  You want to focus on flying, especially on the water at low altitude and speed.  What you do want is some manual control over the flying characteristics of the drone and being able to disable the "Smart Return Home" feature means I can fly down to my normal 30% battery level and then land.  That's all I'm trying to understand.  Does the lack of the "Smart Return Home" switch in MC settings in the new DJI GO 4 app mean the feature can't be disabled, or, does the new switch in the Object Avoidance settings for "Smart Return Home" completely disable the feature or just the object avoidance during "Smart Return Home?"  Haha,, its beginning to look like I'll just test it myself to compare DJI GO v. DJI GO 4.
2017-1-11
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-11 20:44
Its not that easy to get in your menu and constantly reset your home position.  You want to focus on flying, especially on the water at low altitude and speed.  What you do want is some manual control over the flying characteristics of the drone and being able to disable the "Smart Return Home" feature means I can fly down to my normal 30% battery level and then land.  That's all I'm trying to understand.  Does the lack of the "Smart Return Home" switch in MC settings in the new DJI GO 4 app mean the feature can't be disabled, or, does the new switch in the Object Avoidance settings for "Smart Return Home" completely disable the feature or just the object avoidance during "Smart Return Home?"  Haha,, its beginning to look like I'll just test it myself to compare DJI GO v. DJI GO 4.

"and being able to disable the "Smart Return Home" feature means I can fly down to my normal 30% battery level and then land."

As far as I'm aware disabling 'Smart RTH' function would have no effect on the 'low battery' RTH function which is what would cause your P4 to RTH when it had decided it had just enough power to dos so.
However when the 'low battery' RTH function enables itself you have a ten second window in which you can cancel it. And the RTH can be cancelled at any time by pushing RTH button on RC.
2017-1-12
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BengalBoy
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Aardvark Posted at 2017-1-12 14:55
"and being able to disable the "Smart Return Home" feature means I can fly down to my normal 30% battery level and then land."

As far as I'm aware disabling 'Smart RTH' function would have no effect on the 'low battery' RTH function which is what would cause your P4 to RTH when it had decided it had just enough power to dos so.

No, that is exactly what "Smart Return Home" feature does.  Depending on how far away you are from your launch "home point" the Phantom 4 with it enabled calculates how far away you are from your home point and how much battery it has left in order to return.  If you fly far enough, fast enough, the Phantom 4 may execute a "RTH" command based upon this feature at greater than 50% battery life.    When it occurs is dependent on just how far away you go from the launch point not battery level as you are describing.  My settings are such that the Phantom 4 will auto land at 10% and will give me a low battery warning at 30%, however, the Phantom 4 will not try to RTH or auto land.  Anyway, you want to disable this feature if your flying on the open ocean, disable RTH on loss of connection (set it to hover) and always be ready to bring it in when you reach the 30% battery level.  

As for canceling it when the error appeared on screen, there was no way to do so.  Once initiated the "Smart Return Home" feature was locked in.  At least it was a month or so after Phantom was introduced.  
2017-1-12
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BengalBoy
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An image I took a couple months ago of Horseshoe Bay, Komodo on the Indian Ocean.  I have many more shots of volcanos and islands in the Flores Sea and Indian Ocean.  Nothing has been more exciting and fun for me than flying my Phantom 4 over the ocean.  However, it does have extra risks and so far my biggest error was not understanding what "Smart Return Home" was and what it changed about the flying characteristics of my Phantom 4 as compared to the Phantom 2 Vision+ I learned to fly with.  
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2017-1-12
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Aardvark
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"No, that is exactly what "Smart Return Home" feature does."

I understand what you are trying to achieve and why, but I believe you have the terminology wrong

That's what the 'Low Battery RTH' does, Not 'Smart RTH', you might be more convinced if you look at the extract from the manual P14 for definitions of terms:-
Smart RTH crop - Copy.jpg
2017-1-12
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BengalBoy
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You know, I can't give you any better advice than first hand experience.  If "Smart Return Home" within the DJI GO app in the MC settings, advanced settings tab, is enabled and you are flying from a moving boat on the open ocean the drone will enter RTH on its own when it decides it has just enough battery to make it back to home without giving you any chance of cancelling it.  (that was my experience)  If you disable "Smart Return Home" and you fly from a moving boat the drone will fly until its battery is depleted and then execute an auto-land at the battery % you have selected.  A shot of sunset over Sumbawa Island as seen looking back from Komodo Island.  Flying in the Flores Sea as my diving yacht moves along the water.
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2017-1-12
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Aardvark
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-12 18:29
You know, I can't give you any better advice than first hand experience.  If "Smart Return Home" within the DJI GO app in the MC settings, advanced settings tab, is enabled and you are flying from a moving boat on the open ocean the drone will enter RTH on its own without giving you any chance of cancelling it.  (that was my experience)  If you disable "Smart Return Home" and you fly from a moving boat the drone will fly until its battery is depleted and then execute an auto-land at the battery % you have selected.

I'll leave it at that then, I can only accept that on the day that was your experience, no offence intended As you say there have been several releases and 'developments' since the P4 was first introduced which may have muddied the waters a bit.

p.s. That is a beautiful image you've posted above.
2017-1-12
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BengalBoy
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Thank you Aardvark!  It was the first time I got to really enjoy the power of the Phantom 4, no limits!  Flew it at the top of a volcano and so many beautiful places along the ocean in Indonesia.  It was Awesome!!  Last image is a shot of the caldron of Mount Agung I took at almost 2 miles away and over 10,000 feet in altitude.  The Phantom 4 is a remarkable piece of tech!  
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2017-1-12
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Aardvark
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-12 18:47
Thank you Aardvark!  It was the first time I got to really enjoy the power of the Phantom 4, no limits!  Flew it at the top of a volcano and so many beautiful places along the ocean in Indonesia.  It was Awesome!!  Last image is a shot of the caldron of Mount Agung I took at almost 2 miles away and over 10,000 feet in altitude.  The Phantom 4 is a remarkable piece of tech!

That's not you near the rim of the volcano is it ? (Two guys in Hi-Vis jackets).
2017-1-12
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BengalBoy
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Aardvark Posted at 2017-1-12 18:51
That's not you near the rim of the volcano is it ? (Two guys in Hi-Vis jackets).

Actually, there are 3 of us up there!   Haha,, the Hi-Vis jackets are packs.  If you look very closely you can see myself in a black jacket sitting on the very rim of Agung's caldron flying.  My porter and guide are just below me.  We climbed for 5 hours to the summit of Agung and I flew my Phantom 4 from there to capture the sunrise above Bali.
2017-1-12
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-12 17:35
No, that is exactly what "Smart Return Home" feature does.  Depending on how far away you are from your launch "home point" the Phantom 4 with it enabled calculates how far away you are from your home point and how much battery it has left in order to return.  If you fly far enough, fast enough, the Phantom 4 may execute a "RTH" command based upon this feature at greater than 50% battery life.    When it occurs is dependent on just how far away you go from the launch point not battery level as you are describing.  My settings are such that the Phantom 4 will auto land at 10% and will give me a low battery warning at 30%, however, the Phantom 4 will not try to RTH or auto land.  Anyway, you want to disable this feature if your flying on the open ocean, disable RTH on loss of connection (set it to hover) and always be ready to bring it in when you reach the 30% battery level.  

As for canceling it when the error appeared on screen, there was no way to do so.  Once initiated the "Smart Return Home" feature was locked in.  At least it was a month or so after Phantom was introduced.

"As for canceling it when the error appeared on screen, there was no way to do so.  Once initiated the "Smart Return Home" feature was locked in.  At least it was a month or so after Phantom was introduced."

Maybe it didn't work properly at first, but on the last but 1 flight I made, it did decide to RTH due to low battery (if you consider 48% to be low!) it did give me 10 seconds to cancel the RTH which I didn't do, then when it was 150m from home, still with 39% battery left I cancelled the RTH using the RTH button on the remote control and continued flying for another 5 minutes landing at 19%.

Since it does give you the opportunity to cancel the RTH both before it starts and at any point on the way home, I don't see a need for an option to disable the RTH, probably better to leave it on and then cancel it when it activates since if you sometimes fly from a fixed point it is a very useful reminder even if you don't use it to do the flying.

It would still be interesting to know if that option in the object avoidance settings does what it says it does, or is actually the option you used to use to disable RTH?...  I'm not sure why anyone would turn that off?  Does it fly faster if you turn it off?
2017-1-13
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BengalBoy
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You would disable the "Smart Return Home" which would be different from the "RTH" button I believe.  The best reason for disabling "Smart Return Home" would be for Pilots who are shooting from the water on moving boats.  I'm sure there would be other possible scenerios, but, when I launch my Phantom from a boat, my home point changes from one area of the open water to another as I travel along the water.  Both times I experienced the "Smart Return Home" feature kick in was during Sport Mode flying and video of fast moving boats.  The battery life was well above the RTH/auto land setting of 10%, actually, 56% on the flyaway I lost my Phantom 4 to.  The execution of "Smart Return Home" at that time was simply an error message giving a message of "Battery Error RTH" and the Phantom 4 stopped, raised itself to RTH altitude and flew back to original home point.  No pressing of the RTH or attempt to reset home point from within DJI GO would stop it from its Kamakazi Mission of self destruction... Be Aware!! If you fly from a boat and your home point is the open water,,, disable "Smart Return Home"...
2017-1-13
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if you want her to follow you, then you need to fly a follow me trajectory. that mode uses the app gps (phone gps) to require the drone be within a certain distance from the controller, with the camera pointing to whatever gps position the controller relays back to the drone. now if the drone is a mile away, i down see why she couldn't switch to follow me in mid flight. by comparison, smart RTH is a battery level setting which will automatically prompt RTH. dont see how this could be of any use if the home was set on a moving boat.
2017-1-14
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BengalBoy
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That is why I am trying to find out if the DJI GO 4 app turns off "Smart Return Home" through the object avoidance settings.  I'm getting a Mavic and I need to make sure this is disabled when flying on the open water.  "Follow Me" is a great feature to use while shooting boats on the water, however, it is not fast enough to shoot boats accelerating on the plane or low level "action shots" at speed.  A pilot needs to be certain that the feature is disabled when shooting video from a moving boat when flying.
2017-1-17
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-17 10:34
That is why I am trying to find out if the DJI GO 4 app turns off "Smart Return Home" through the object avoidance settings.  I'm getting a Mavic and I need to make sure this is disabled when flying on the open water.  "Follow Me" is a great feature to use while shooting boats on the water, however, it is not fast enough to shoot boats accelerating on the plane or low level "action shots" at speed.  A pilot needs to be certain that the feature is disabled when shooting video from a moving boat when flying.

BengalBoy,
Thanks so much for your insight. I am also in the process of exploring open water flights, particularly from a moving/ speeding boat. I have been doing extensive research just to make sure I do not make that 'RTH' mistake. By the way, I understand 100% what you meant when your first P4 initiated the 'Battery error/ RTH' due to the drone being far away from the original home point and it wouldn't accept any commands to cancel this feature even though you were still within RC and Drone signal connection range. Apparently, once the Drone detects that it is far away from home and it needs to make its way back, there is not cancelling no matter. I totally get that.
That said, here is a quick recap for the best precautions/ settings to take while flying from a moving boat;
1) Set 'Remote Controller Signal Lost' to HOVER. Very IMPORTANT!
2) Disable 'Smart Return-to-Home'. This way, distance away from home and/or battery percentage level would not initiate a 'RTH' no matter what. Instead, the drone can fly as far as it can and the battery would get to critical level and ultimately land without initiating any RTH.
3) Set 'Low Battery Warning' maybe to a higher value (~45%) this way, you have a safe heads up just in case you are far away and you need to get close to the Drone or bring the Drone back ASAP.

Lastly, not sure how low or close to the 'sea level' you fly sometimes. I know P4 has no way to disable 'Vision Positioning'. But have you ever experienced problems while flying really low above water? From your general experience, what's your take on this?

Again, thanks so much for you time.
-PK
2017-1-25
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PKPhantom Posted at 2017-1-25 22:56
BengalBoy,
Thanks so much for your insight. I am also in the process of exploring open water flights, particularly from a moving/ speeding boat. I have been doing extensive research just to make sure I do not make that 'RTH' mistake. By the way, I understand 100% what you meant when your first P4 initiated the 'Battery error/ RTH' due to the drone being far away from the original home point and it wouldn't accept any commands to cancel this feature even though you were still within RC and Drone signal connection range. Apparently, once the Drone detects that it is far away from home and it needs to make its way back, there is not cancelling no matter. I totally get that.
That said, here is a quick recap for the best precautions/ settings to take while flying from a moving boat;

I saw a video on youtube of someone testing the battery at max distance and see what happens. He flew like 4 or 5 miles to a mountain side let it hover there until low battery RTH started and then he kept cancelling until his battery ran out and it autolanded right where it was.
2017-1-25
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PKPhantom Posted at 2017-1-25 22:56
BengalBoy,
Thanks so much for your insight. I am also in the process of exploring open water flights, particularly from a moving/ speeding boat. I have been doing extensive research just to make sure I do not make that 'RTH' mistake. By the way, I understand 100% what you meant when your first P4 initiated the 'Battery error/ RTH' due to the drone being far away from the original home point and it wouldn't accept any commands to cancel this feature even though you were still within RC and Drone signal connection range. Apparently, once the Drone detects that it is far away from home and it needs to make its way back, there is not cancelling no matter. I totally get that.
That said, here is a quick recap for the best precautions/ settings to take while flying from a moving boat;

VPS can be turned off in the menu settings....
Visual Navigation Settings' menu, then 'Advanced Settings', then 'enable VPS' to toggle on/off.

2017-1-26
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PKPhantom Posted at 2017-1-25 22:56
BengalBoy,
Thanks so much for your insight. I am also in the process of exploring open water flights, particularly from a moving/ speeding boat. I have been doing extensive research just to make sure I do not make that 'RTH' mistake. By the way, I understand 100% what you meant when your first P4 initiated the 'Battery error/ RTH' due to the drone being far away from the original home point and it wouldn't accept any commands to cancel this feature even though you were still within RC and Drone signal connection range. Apparently, once the Drone detects that it is far away from home and it needs to make its way back, there is not cancelling no matter. I totally get that.
That said, here is a quick recap for the best precautions/ settings to take while flying from a moving boat;

PKPhantom,
You are absolutely right.  Those are the settings I now use when flying my Phantom at sea.  Unfortunately, it cost me a Phantom 4 to learn the hard way.  Finally!! Someone who understands what I'm talking about and has experienced the same issue.  There is no canceling "Smart Return Home" mode once it kicks in.  All you can do is turn around and chase your Phantom 4 back to the original home point and land it when you get there.

I originally experienced the altitude Yo-Yo when the Phantom 4 first came out flying over water.  In the beginning, it was very sensitive to flying over water at anything below 25 feet.  After a firmware upgrade or two, that VPS sensitivity was reduced and then the DJI GO app was upgraded to allow disabling of the VPS .  So, I would add that to your list of settings to change for when you are flying over water!  
2017-1-27
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fansb1fe1104 Posted at 2017-1-25 23:19
I saw a video on youtube of someone testing the battery at max distance and see what happens. He flew like 4 or 5 miles to a mountain side let it hover there until low battery RTH started and then he kept cancelling until his battery ran out and it autolanded right where it was.

He would have had to disable the "Smart Return Home" feature to do that if it was a Phantom 4.
2017-1-27
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-27 22:00
He would have had to disable the "Smart Return Home" feature to do that if it was a Phantom 4.

Totally agree. There is NO way the phantom would take a 'RTH/ Battery Error' cancel command when it is far away from home. It would need to gain some distance towards the home point.

Hey BengalBoy, do you have a showcase where you upload all your videos? I would like to see those amazing ocean/ water flights.

Thanks.
-PK
2017-1-29
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PKPhantom Posted at 2017-1-29 23:14
Totally agree. There is NO way the phantom would take a 'RTH/ Battery Error' cancel command when it is far away from home. It would need to gain some distance towards the home point.

Hey BengalBoy, do you have a showcase where you upload all your videos? I would like to see those amazing ocean/ water flights.

PKPhantom,  I'm really more of a photographer than a videographer.  You can check out my Instagram at "bengalboy69" to see a lot of drone photography on the ocean going back to when I got my Phantom 2 Vision+.  I am trying to learn how to edit video, but, I really use my camera drones more for photography which I am better at.  However, I did recently put together some clips of a recent trip to Bali and Komodo Islands that you can see some extreme video over a sunken volcano (altitude and distance from my diving yacht) in the Flores Sea and me launching at 10,000 feet from the cauldron of Mount Agung in Bali.  I'm practicing to make better video and learn to use Adobe Premiere Elements instead of the LiLoScope app I'm currently using.    Anyway,, here is the video from my YouTube account where I have a lot of other vids of me flying over the ocean or large bodies of water.  
2017-1-30
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PKPhantom Posted at 2017-1-29 23:14
Totally agree. There is NO way the phantom would take a 'RTH/ Battery Error' cancel command when it is far away from home. It would need to gain some distance towards the home point.

Hey BengalBoy, do you have a showcase where you upload all your videos? I would like to see those amazing ocean/ water flights.

here is the video:
2017-1-31
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fansb1fe1104 Posted at 2017-1-31 08:17
here is the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRxEfWOVAlU

I didn't watch the entire 14 minute video, however, judging by the video title, this is completely contrary to OP's experience. Again, he did NOT lose signal with his Phantom 4. Simply put, since he was on a moving vessel, he still had FULL control signal of the bird because the controller was within the operating range with the bird at that time. The RTH kicked in because the original 'Home Point' had reached a far enough distance for the drone to 'intelligently' conclude that the current distance accumulated requires an immediate RTH before the battery runs out.
2017-2-1
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-1-30 18:36
PKPhantom,  I'm really more of a photographer than a videographer.  You can check out my Instagram at "bengalboy69" to see a lot of drone photography on the ocean going back to when I got my Phantom 2 Vision+.  I am trying to learn how to edit video, but, I really use my camera drones more for photography which I am better at.  However, I did recently put together some clips of a recent trip to Bali and Komodo Islands that you can see some extreme video over a sunken volcano (altitude and distance from my diving yacht) in the Flores Sea and me launching at 10,000 feet from the cauldron of Mount Agung in Bali.  I'm practicing to make better video and learn to use Adobe Premiere Elements instead of the LiLoScope app I'm currently using.    Anyway,, here is the video from my YouTube account where I have a lot of other vids of me flying over the ocean or large bodies of water.  https://youtu.be/mY8Mxr6WtHk

Very very nice. Thanks for sharing.
2017-2-1
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PKPhantom Posted at 2017-2-1 18:44
I didn't watch the entire 14 minute video, however, judging by the video title, this is completely contrary to OP's experience. Again, he did NOT lose signal with his Phantom 4. Simply put, since he was on a moving vessel, he still had FULL control signal of the bird because the controller was within the operating range with the bird at that time. The RTH kicked in because the original 'Home Point' had reached a far enough distance for the drone to 'intelligently' conclude that the current distance accumulated requires an immediate RTH before the battery runs out.

That is correct.  I did not lose signal, the Phantom 4 was only a few hundred feet from my dive boat.  I was doing high speed passes with the Phantom 4 as we hurtled across the Gulf of Mexico at about 25 knots.  At about 55% battery life after we had traveled over 2 miles from the original launch site and flying almost continuously in Sport Mode chasing the boat and getting action video the Phantom 4 suddenly stopped, climbed to RTH altitude, and flew in opposite direction while DJI Go app displayed "battery error, RTH".  I then watched my Phantom 4 travel over 13,000 feet back from my position and gently land above the wreck of sunken aircraft carrier.  That is the function of "Smart Return Home.
2017-2-2
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PKPhantom Posted at 2017-2-1 18:47
Very very nice. Thanks for sharing.

Thank you PKPhantom!  
2017-2-2
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Dear BengalBoy. Thanks for this post, the discussion and the beautiful images. Yet, especially since you continue to repeat what is clearly a terminology mistake, I must agree with a previous comment, and reiterate that fact. What you describe is the "Low Battery Return Home." The "function" of the "Smart Return Home" is to return home when it is activated by the user by pressing the RTH button.

Again, this is just terminology, and not a dispute of any of the events you describe.  

DJI could've named these modes differently, since it's just a product name, brand, etc. As the three distinct Return-home scenarios/modes have  their own names.
2017-7-30
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BengalBoy Posted at 2017-2-2 16:53
That is correct.  I did not lose signal, the Phantom 4 was only a few hundred feet from my dive boat.  I was doing high speed passes with the Phantom 4 as we hurtled across the Gulf of Mexico at about 25 knots.  At about 55% battery life after we had traveled over 2 miles from the original launch site and flying almost continuously in Sport Mode chasing the boat and getting action video the Phantom 4 suddenly stopped, climbed to RTH altitude, and flew in opposite direction while DJI Go app displayed "battery error, RTH".  I then watched my Phantom 4 travel over 13,000 feet back from my position and gently land above the wreck of sunken aircraft carrier.  That is the function of "Smart Return Home.

Your conclusion is correct.  I understood it since first moment.  Your explanation give me a lot of confidence about the actual RTH functionality (your first P4 did not immolate in vain).  Today, I did post two questions on the same topic (RTH) that could complement your explanation.  No answers yet.  Wonderful images from your trip!.

By the way, I have a phantom 3 Standard, the best price/performance drone in the world.  And yours, the P4 Pro is the best drone around, absolutely, much better than other series from DJI.
2017-8-28
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CamNYC Posted at 2017-7-30 11:54
Dear BengalBoy. Thanks for this post, the discussion and the beautiful images. Yet, especially since you continue to repeat what is clearly a terminology mistake, I must agree with a previous comment, and reiterate that fact. What you describe is the "Low Battery Return Home." The "function" of the "Smart Return Home" is to return home when it is activated by the user by pressing the RTH button.

Again, this is just terminology, and not a dispute of any of the events you describe.  

This is an official answer from DJI, here in this forum in thread : https://forum.dji.com/thread-37141-1-1.html:

"Look at my previous post, Smart RTH basically enables/disables the low battery RTH.
With Smart RTH enabled, the aircraft knows roughly how much battery you need to come home and it will not let you fly further than the battery needed to come home.
With Smart RTH disabled, you can hover a mile away and you may look down and you only have a little battery left and not enough to get home so it will land and not come home."


2017-8-28
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I was curious about this too.

Am I correct in stating that a Smart RTH will attempt to initiate a RTH the same as a Low Battery RTH? That is, it will tell you that it is going to RTH because of lack of battery power to make it to the RTH point.

And then you have 10 secs to either cancel it or let it do its thing?

My further understanding is that for a Low Battery Warning, if you continue to engage the controls, it will not initiate the RTH automatically and in essence, is just a warning and will not become a RTH.

I remember seeing somewhere in the menu, no doubt on an earlier version, that you could cancel the Smart RTH warning / RTH. But it doesn't seem like there is any way to do it now other than within 10 seconds of getting the notice.

Just trying to keep up with the changes.

2017-12-4
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