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Which antenna booster?
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piowoc73
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Hi,

I was looking at the offers of antenna boosters, but can't really figure out which one would work best with P4P.
Here are my concerns: are the copper / gold ones boosters work with 5.8GHz frequency of P4P, or are they able to boost 2.4GHz range only? Also, with the boosters installed is it possible to have the antennas pointed straight up (90 degrees) as for 5.8 GHz frequency?

Thanks!
2017-2-14
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SPIKE_151
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Are you talking about the windsurfers? like the skyreat? yes they work for all frequencies bar x-rays, normally when people say "boosters" people envisage amplifiers like sunhams. Windsurfers dont increase signal wattage, they just direct the 50% that goes from the rear of the antenna forwards. The transmitted wattage from the remote controller doesnt change
2017-2-14
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SPIKE_151
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Are you talking about the windsurfers? like the skyreat? yes they work for all frequencies bar x-rays, normally when people say "boosters" people envisage amplifiers like sunhams. Windsurfers dont increase signal wattage, they just direct the 50% that goes from the rear of the antenna forwards. The transmitted wattage from the remote controller doesnt change
2017-2-14
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piowoc73
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Yes, sorry, but they used "booster" in the product name. So, can I use them with the antennas straight up on P4P? Also, will they help in case of any interference from power lines? Thanks!
2017-2-14
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rlarsen462
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-14 09:34
Yes, sorry, but they used "booster" in the product name. So, can I use them with the antennas straight up on P4P? Also, will they help in case of any interference from power lines? Thanks!

I used the aluminum one from dynamic3d on 5.8GHz to fly 11,000 feet from the starting location with zero loss of RC or Video signal, FWIW.
2017-2-14
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piowoc73
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rlarsen462 Posted at 2017-2-14 11:21
I used the aluminum one from dynamic3d on 5.8GHz to fly 11,000 feet from the starting location with zero loss of RC or Video signal, FWIW.

I was looking at the following model: https://www.amazon.com/TOZO-Para ... ENWVNJ6PX6YH2BBS2ZX

It seems that they have very good fit, but people complain that it's impossible to have the antennas pointed straight up, because the boosters touching the RC, which may have a negative impact on the signal with the drone close to the RC and above the head.
2017-2-14
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Snowwolfwarrior
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If you look at the photo on the Amazon site you will notice that when the boosters are fitted the antenna cant be extended right back, so in normal use they basically make the antenna and boosters point to the ground, this defeats the object, you can make sure the antenna point towards the sky and at the drone but working the controls is dire at that angle.
2017-2-14
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Mark The Droner
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I thought I'd seen everything but that is one screwball way to fly a Phantom

2017-2-14
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Beux
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2017-2-14 12:27
I thought I'd seen everything but that is one screwball way to fly a Phantom

[view_image]

At this point I'll try anything.  I have a set of the aluminum type. The get me a few extra feet. I'll try the upside-down way next time. My furthest from home flight is 1600'. I'm not happy.

I know someone will say that there are many variables that can reduce signal strength but anything short of me flying from inside a bunker is no excuse for this dismal range.
2017-2-14
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dronist
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Beux Posted at 2017-2-14 14:32
At this point I'll try anything.  I have a set of the aluminum type. The get me a few extra feet. I'll try the upside-down way next time. My furthest from home flight is 1600'. I'm not happy.

I know someone will say that there are many variables that can reduce signal strength but anything short of me flying from inside a bunker is no excuse for this dismal range.

I flew for 19000' but I was on a hill, 300' high, straight line of sight, no power line, antenna, cell towers ETC...

Did you upload any of your flight logs to www.healthydrones.com?
2017-2-14
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Cetacean
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-14 11:33
I was looking at the following model: https://www.amazon.com/TOZO-Parabolic-Professional-controller-Transmitter/dp/B01K1BY32I/ref=pd_cp_421_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=0ENWVNJ6PX6YH2BBS2ZX

It seems that they have very good fit, but people complain that it's impossible to have the antennas pointed straight up, because the boosters touching the RC, which may have a negative impact on the signal with the drone close to the RC and above the head.

Aloha piowoc,

     Booster, schmooster what ever it does.  The key is it sends more of the generated signal forward or whatever direction the parabolics are oriented.  Check this link to another thread I did a while back.  There you will see what parabolics can do and may give you some background on what purchase you want to make.

http://forum.dji.com/thread-60563-1-1.html

     Included are about every possible flying configuration if you get the right type of parabolics.  Lots of photos.

     I really like mine because it penetrates the jungle so well.

Aloha and Drone On!
2017-2-14
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SPIKE_151
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-14 09:34
Yes, sorry, but they used "booster" in the product name. So, can I use them with the antennas straight up on P4P? Also, will they help in case of any interference from power lines? Thanks!

I use the skyreat, and have them on both my antennas and they dont touch the controller body when the antennas are in the correct position
2017-2-15
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piowoc73
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Cetacean Posted at 2017-2-14 23:23
Aloha piowoc,

     Booster, schmooster what ever it does.  The key is it sends more of the generated signal forward or whatever direction the parabolics are oriented.  Check this link to another thread I did a while back.  There you will see what parabolics can do and may give you some background on what purchase you want to make.

This is really helpful! Thanks!
2017-2-15
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blackcrusader
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-15 05:15
This is really helpful! Thanks!

I only have the P3S but installed the Argtek.  Very happy with it.

I can now fly 500m up through the fog and not lose signal anymore.

2017-2-15
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piowoc73
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Cetacean Posted at 2017-2-14 23:23
Aloha piowoc,

     Booster, schmooster what ever it does.  The key is it sends more of the generated signal forward or whatever direction the parabolics are oriented.  Check this link to another thread I did a while back.  There you will see what parabolics can do and may give you some background on what purchase you want to make.

Aloha Cetacean,

does it matter if I use 2.4 or 5.8GHz frequency with the booster? I know that in theory (with no interference) I should get better range at 2.4GHz, but I am hoping that even on 5.8Ghz with the boosters it will be at least a mile, or so. What do you think?
2017-2-15
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piowoc73
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-15 08:15
Aloha Cetacean,

does it matter if I use 2.4 or 5.8GHz frequency with the booster? I know that in theory (with no interference) I should get better range at 2.4GHz, but I am hoping that even on 5.8Ghz with the boosters it will be at least a mile, or so. What do you think?

Also, does it really matter if I am at the highest elevation point of the area?
2017-2-15
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Mark The Droner
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-15 08:15
Aloha Cetacean,

does it matter if I use 2.4 or 5.8GHz frequency with the booster? I know that in theory (with no interference) I should get better range at 2.4GHz, but I am hoping that even on 5.8Ghz with the boosters it will be at least a mile, or so. What do you think?

If I may cut in...

Booster is not a good name for that equipment.  It's commonly called a windsurfer.  Parabolic deflector also works well.  

To answer this question accurately, we'd have to know the distance from the antenna to the back of the deflector.  It gets tricky with the 5.8 because the wavelength is quite a bit smaller than 2.4.  So you have to be concerned about the deflected signal arriving at the receiver out of phase which will in effect damage the straight LOS signal.  Here's a wavelength calculator.  

http://www.wavelengthcalculator.com/

Since the wavelength of a 5.8 ghz signal is 2.0 inches, a distance of exactly 1.0 inch would be great because the deflected signal would phase-shift 360 degrees - or one wave length.  A distance of exactly one half inch would be very bad because the deflected signal would arrive out of phase and would have a tendency to cancel out or weaken the good LOS signal.  A distance of something like one-eighth of an inch would be good because the deflected signal would arrive mostly in-phase with the LOS signal.  

Hope this helps

2017-2-15
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Cetacean
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-15 08:15
Aloha Cetacean,

does it matter if I use 2.4 or 5.8GHz frequency with the booster? I know that in theory (with no interference) I should get better range at 2.4GHz, but I am hoping that even on 5.8Ghz with the boosters it will be at least a mile, or so. What do you think?

Aloha piowoc,

     You will easily get a mile unless there is something unusual going on.  Then you would have to identify that issue.  I have noticed no difference in performance between the two frequencies and I use 5.8GHz when flying with P4s and P3s.  (The interference is very noticeable.)

     With 2.4GHz, the further your separation in the presence of 2.4GHz pollution (over a reasonably dense, medium to high income suburban community), the more effect the pollution will have on your connection, even with parabolics.  5.8GHz with the same separation will be less affected by the 2.4GHz pollution but could be affected by 5.8GHz pollution.  Fortunately, there is less 5.8GHz pollution than 2.4GHz pollution at this time in our history.  There are other factors related to the physics of the wave forms that others can explain better than I, but this is a basic guiding principle.

Aloha and Drone On!
2017-2-15
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piowoc73
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2017-2-15 12:30
If I may cut in...

Booster is not a good name for that equipment.  It's commonly called a windsurfer.  Parabolic deflector also works well.  

I should be able to measure the exact distance on Friday, when the "windsurfer" arrives
2017-2-15
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piowoc73
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Cetacean Posted at 2017-2-15 13:02
Aloha piowoc,

     You will easily get a mile unless there is something unusual going on.  Then you would have to identify that issue.  I have noticed no difference in performance between the two frequencies and I use 5.8GHz when flying with P4s and P3s.  (The interference is very noticeable.)

You mean a mile, but only with the windsurfer, right? Or, if I am about 250 feet above the area, where the drone will fly should I get a mile of range even without any windsurfers?
2017-2-15
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piowoc73
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Also, when planning my missions on Litchi mission hub what maximum flight distance and time should I assume to be on the safe side? I am trying to have all my missions not to exceed 3 miles in total and no longer than 16 mins of flight time. The cruising speed would be always below 15 mph. Is that reasonable? I am not sure how to calculate the power / battery time needed.
2017-2-15
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piowoc73
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I just realized that I made a mistake by ordering the following model: https://www.amazon.com/gp/produc ... 2_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
because they can't be easily separated and set as in Cetacean's very informative post.
So, should I order the following one instead: https://www.amazon.com/SKYREAT-P ... 2E83QG56PT51FATMR24
2017-2-15
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Cetacean
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-15 13:18
You mean a mile, but only with the windsurfer, right? Or, if I am about 250 feet above the area, where the drone will fly should I get a mile of range even without any windsurfers?

Aloha piowoc,

     The P4 series is rated at over 3 miles, so a mile should be easy unless there is 2.4GHz pollution.  For example, you are launching 250 feet altitude above a suburban neighborhood and plan to fly over them.  I have flown LOS over such circumstances and not made it a half mile, well, maybe just over a half mile.

     The point is the parabolics do help provide a more dense signal coming and going.  It collects the signals.

Aloha and Drone On!
2017-2-15
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Cetacean
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-15 13:30
I just realized that I made a mistake by ordering the following model: https://www.amazon.com/gp/produc ... 2_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
because they can't be easily separated and set as in Cetacean's very informative post.
So, should I order the following one instead: https://www.amazon.com/SKYREAT-P ... 2E83QG56PT51FATMR24

Aloha piowoc,

     If you can find the ones I quoted in my thread, they are only $10 and $1 of that is postage.  The ones in your link will also work.  Depending on what type of flying you plan to do, you may want to keep both.  Sometimes, I tape my two together.  (In a pinch I can rip the tape and flip a parabolic around.)

Aloha and Drone On!
2017-2-15
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Cetacean
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2017-2-15 12:30
If I may cut in...

Booster is not a good name for that equipment.  It's commonly called a windsurfer.  Parabolic deflector also works well.  

Aloha Mark,

     Mahalo for the input and the link for the calculator (kind of squirrely though with adds).  The parabolics pretty much match the requirements you noted for both.  Mahalo again.

Aloha and Drone On!
2017-2-15
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RedHotPoker
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2017-2-14 12:27
I thought I'd seen everything but that is one screwball way to fly a Phantom

[view_image]

That seems that the reflectors are put on backwards. Haha

I never fly with my RC tilted forward like that.

But I have a Phantom 3 Pro, so no need for those either.  ;-)


RedHotPoker
2017-2-15
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Mark The Droner
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Makes no friggin' sense.  You'd have to hold the controller down at your thighs to aim it correctly.  And then your head is looking straight down rather than out at where your AC is in the sky.  
2017-2-16
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blackcrusader
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-15 11:39
Also, does it really matter if I am at the highest elevation point of the area?

Sure it does.  Today myself and a friend who both have P3S and Argtek flew a site we flew yesterday.

Even with the Argtek we had some signal issues even at 600m distance and 500m height due to very thick fog.  I did manage a 1.5km distance flight but there were some times when weak transmission was shown on the phone.

If we did not have the Argteks on we could not have flown these flights today on standard antenna.

We also were launching from high up in the mountains from 8600ft and flying up to 10200 feet altitude.  On later flights the cloud level had dropped to around 8700 feet and we had no issues with signals.

2017-2-16
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Benjamin Watson
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blackcrusader Posted at 2017-2-16 06:45
Sure it does.  Today myself and a friend who both have P3S and Argtek flew a site we flew yesterday.

Even with the Argtek we had some signal issues even at 600m distance and 500m height due to very thick fog.  I did manage a 1.5km distance flight but there were some times when weak transmission was shown on the phone.

Question. What are the rules for using your UAV regarding heights?
In the Nordics here we´re not allowed to fly higher than 100m without having a drone license and even then there are limits.

I could never be allowed to fly in 500m because of risk of crashing an airplane.

Great shot btw.
2017-2-16
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blackcrusader
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Benjamin Watson Posted at 2017-2-16 12:34
Question. What are the rules for using your UAV regarding heights?
In the Nordics here we´re not allowed to fly higher than 100m without having a drone license and even then there are limits.

There are no planes flying in this area. Due to the fact nearby mountains are at just under 4000m and we are flying at 3100m.   There are no limits in this area. If say I was in Taipei City then there is a flight max limit 60m.

Yesterday we had to climb 380m just to clear the clouds.  Was fun and yes we are very happy with what we see.  
2017-2-17
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piowoc73
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2017-2-15 12:30
If I may cut in...

Booster is not a good name for that equipment.  It's commonly called a windsurfer.  Parabolic deflector also works well.  

The distance from the antenna for the windsurfers I bought for my P4P is about 3/4", so I am not sure how good, or bad would it be for 5.8GHz frequency. Should I use 2.4Ghz instead?

Also, what do you think about the advice given by Cetaman in the following thread: http://forum.dji.com/thread-60563-1-1.html
See the pics in post #9 there. I was about to use the "BestBoth" setup depicted here:
https://forum44.djicdn.com/data/ ... czga8vz1zwgsiay.jpg
My windsurfers look almost identical to those.

Any comments?
2017-2-18
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Mark The Droner
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Cetaman's setup is unusual.  My understanding of Lightbridge is that each antenna does a different job.  There was a thread on PP where it was proven with testing equipment that each antenna performed different tasks.  So I'm not sure if pointing the antennas in different directions would work as well as the conventional method of pointing them in the same direction.  But it also depends on what kind of flying you're doing and what your goals are.  

Re the windsurfer in general, I think it's easier if you understand phase-shift and then you can figure it out yourself.  Otherwise you're just taking my word for it and who knows, I may be an idiot!  Phase-shift is important and it's not something to be dismissed.  

So I suggest you look at this vid which describes phase-shift nicely.  https://www.khanacademy.org/test ... v/wave-interference

Now you know that you want the deflected signal to arrive at the receiver in phase with the LOS signal, which is to say you want the height of the deflected sine wave to arrive at the same time as the height of the LOS sine wave.  

So once you've got your head wrapped around that, it's simple arithmetic.  For example, if the distance between the two pole antennas (xmtr and rcvr) is exactly, one mile and zero inches.  Then we know the LOS signal will travel exactly one mile and 0 inches.  So what is a good distance for the deflected signal to travel?  

Since we know the wavelength of a 2.4 ghz signal is 4.9 inches, and since we know the deflected wave is going to cover more distance than the LOS wave, what would be a good distance?  

The answer, of course, is exactly 1 mile and 4.9 inches.  So if you can position your windsurfer so that the deflected wave is traveling something close to 4.9 inches over the one mile, it would be near-perfect.  And you could then say your windsurfer antenna is "tuned" to 2.4 ghz.  

OTOH, the 5.8 ghz signal has a wavelength of 2.1 inches, so that is the extra travel you'd want on the deflected wave.  Or 4.2 inches would work equally well.  

This deflected signal concept in regards to phase shift is also explained on the fresnel zone wiki page.  

Hope this makes sense to you.
2017-2-18
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KevDrones
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piowoc73 Posted at 2017-2-14 11:33
I was looking at the following model: https://www.amazon.com/TOZO-Parabolic-Professional-controller-Transmitter/dp/B01K1BY32I/ref=pd_cp_421_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=0ENWVNJ6PX6YH2BBS2ZX

It seems that they have very good fit, but people complain that it's impossible to have the antennas pointed straight up, because the boosters touching the RC, which may have a negative impact on the signal with the drone close to the RC and above the head.

I have heard good reviews on youtube.
2017-2-18
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piowoc73
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SPIKE_151 Posted at 2017-2-15 00:05
I use the skyreat, and have them on both my antennas and they dont touch the controller body when the antennas are in the correct position

How significant is the boost from skyreat windsurfers? I was flying a 2.5 miles long mission yesterday about 3000 feet maximum distance from the RC and there was no problem with the signal, so I started wondering if I need the widnsurfers at all. However, I was on the highest elevation in the area and on 5.8GHz frequency. My widsurfers arrived last Friday, but I haven't had time yet to try them.

When using windsurfers do you have both antennas straight up at 90 degrees?
What do you think about the setups recommended by Cetaman in this thread:
http://forum.dji.com/thread-60563-1-1.html
I was especially interested in the one he calls "BestBoth" depicted here:
https://forum44.djicdn.com/data/ ... czga8vz1zwgsiay.jpg

2017-2-20
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SPIKE_151
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As regards Skyreats, if you research what others have done with them then yes they increase signal strength received at the drone, and increase distance by up to 30%. I wouldn't be bothered much with micro adjusting the antennas. Just slip on the windsurfers, and have at it. Don't overthink it, the trial and error has already been done. Leave your HD in auto and just enjoy flying without worrying about what frequency of channel the drone is using. The P4P will always pick the best option available to it at any time dependent on what interference it sees.

2017-2-21
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