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Apas 3.0 vs. Skydio: Tracking and OA Comparisons

Hiflyer808

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Mostly just trying to gather video evidence in one place. I don't understand the language in this German video, and I wish he showed the drone's POV more often, but there are some good examples here of Apas 3.0 tracking and OA in an obstacle rich, forested environment. Compares well with the Skydio here, especially with regard to smoothness and choice of which way to go when avoiding. Obviously would do much worse from side or front or orbiting. Here is where you might expect the Skydio to do particularly well compared to other drones, but actually there are many videos where it makes strange choices and gets stuck, and/or is very restless. What do you guys think?
 

skydioconvert

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Have to admit the MA2 did an impressive job following the target in some pretty obstacle intense environment.
Too bad the reviewer didn't also have a Skydio 2 to do a better one on one comparison.
Making strange choices when either one gets stuck just shows how early on either system is when it comes to learning.
Machine learning relies on many things but cornerstone to it working well is data, data and more data.
Unless there's an unforeseen break through in artificial intelligence the lead in autonomous drone technology will very likely bounce back and forth for many years to come.

P.S. Liked the guys rabbit logo :)
 

Hiflyer808

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Have to admit the MA2 did an impressive job following the target in some pretty obstacle intense environment.
Too bad the reviewer didn't also have a Skydio 2 to do a better one on one comparison.
Making strange choices when either one gets stuck just shows how early on either system is when it comes to learning.
Machine learning relies on many things but cornerstone to it working well is data, data and more data.
Unless there's an unforeseen break through in artificial intelligence the lead in autonomous drone technology will very likely bounce back and forth for many years to come.

P.S. Liked the guys rabbit logo :)
In this one the Air 2's limitations are more evident. Parallel tracking is not good at all re OA, and he can't get it to track flying backwards. I suspect it would do so for a while if starting from farther away, but always looking for a chance to move to behind the subject. From behind, the A2 continues to compare nicely to the S2, as long as the speed is slow to moderate. The spotlight and POI tracking are good examples of tracking at a distance that the S2 can't do, although I wouldnt trust the OA at all in those modes. I'm confused about the difference between orbiting in active track vs POI. Seems like with both it is orbiting while tracking. Will have to look at that part again.
 

Hiflyer808

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This video illustrates one way the Air 2 tracking is clearly better than the Skydio's. He shows how the improved ActiveTrack plans out a route as it follows you in such a way that when it loses you behind an obstacle it continues to move smoothly as if you were still being tracked, and it also follows you around curves in a way that follows your motion, rather than trying to take a shortcut as the S2 often does. The result is substantially smoother than the S2, from behind at slow to medium speeds of course. This German video with subtitles is long; at about 7:30 is the section on ActiveTrack. Then towards the end he talks about Apas and how when you use it with tracking, it also plans out how it's going to avoid upcoming obstacles. Again, smoother, and often more logical choices of which route to take when dodging. It is this smoothness and better choices (and better tracking from far away) that makes me say the A2 is not so far behind the S2 in overall tracking performance. At high speeds or from the side or in front, the Skydio is vastly better, but at moderate speeds from behind I'd say it's worse.

 
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Hiflyer808

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Actually the Apas section is at about 18:55, not towards the end. He says they did some pretty extreme tests without the drone hitting anything, but unfortunately we don't get to see those.
 

Jafemu

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As expressed in some internet videos I’ve seen, some are disappointed that Skydio will not track from a distance, so the scenery is sometimes not revealed. Of course doing frequent fly away selfies with Skydio2 gives some distant landscape shots. But I have yet to have the Skydio track me at a walking pace without jumping all over the place. That’s a win for the Mavic Air 2........smoother low speed following.
 
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VEGASROBBI

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As expressed in some internet videos I’ve seen, some are disappointed that Skydio will not track from a distance, so the scenery is sometimes not revealed. Of course doing frequent fly away selfies with Skydio2 gives some distant landscape shots. But I have yet to have the Skydio track me at a walking pace without jumping all over the place. That’s a win for the Mavic Air 2........smoother low speed following.
Well yes, and no IMO. The MA is using optical only so distance is limited to vision. The S2, like Anafi, uses a combination of optical and GPS which has significant advantages.

I have tracked from 1/2 mile out with my 3DR Solo and near that distance with my Anafi. Skydio limits the follow distance just like DJI(but more), I don't know why . Maybe as a sports drone moving fast they want it to stay in close. My guess is Skydio can open up the distance to whatever they want and follow off GPS with minimal optical. Anafi forces you to have both optical and GPS to follow securely.

APAS is really a fancy name for "were going to guess" based off the last known position and the trajectory of the subject.

The S2 has got much smoother in the last couple updates. Following from the rear has always been active tracks strong point, but from the side or front that advantage is lost. Skydio has the hardware to follow from a distance and smoothly let's hope they implement this in future updates.
 
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Ridefreak

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I've had really good results filming backwards with the SD2, literally for miles around over and in between trees and up and down hills, just don't confuse it with another possible subject. Filming backwards while tracking a subject is very impressive when you consider how close it's capable of flying as it's doing it. One thing that was immediately apparent first time I used an autonomous drone in that way, it's allot harder for the tracking as every move of the drone is reactionary. In follow mode the drone sees the subject's path ahead of time. I'm not surprised the new DJI can't do that (yet), it's not an easy task to do smoothly. IMO the SD is pretty good at it.

I've found about 20-30mph is the sweet spot, it seems to look out further and the tracking adjustments appear more fluid.
 
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Hiflyer808

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Well yes, and no IMO. The MA is using optical only so distance is limited to vision. The S2, like Anafi, uses a combination of optical and GPS which has significant advantages.

I have tracked from 1/2 mile out with my 3DR Solo and near that distance with my Anafi. Skydio limits the follow distance just like DJI(but more), I don't know why . Maybe as a sports drone moving fast they want it to stay in close. My guess is Skydio can open up the distance to whatever they want and follow off GPS with minimal optical. Anafi forces you to have both optical and GPS to follow securely.

APAS is really a fancy name for "were going to guess" based off the last known position and the trajectory of the subject.

The S2 has got much smoother in the last couple updates. Following from the rear has always been active tracks strong point, but from the side or front that advantage is lost. Skydio has the hardware to follow from a distance and smoothly let's hope they implement this in future updates.
Really nice to hear the smoothness is improved.
 

Hiflyer808

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In this long demo, almost all from behind, I think the Air 2 tracking is quite a bit better than the Skydio. Smoother, better framing. In some areas there are quite a few obstacles and tricky lighting and it still performs well. The guy takes his time getting started; tracking starts about halfway through.
 

Hiflyer808

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In this one im most interested in the tracking from the front, which it seems like nobody experiments with enough. In his brief try you can see that if you start it out far enough in front it will track backwards for a while. Also, good to see it confirmed that you can track in hdr mode. That mode is looking really good to me, giving you a lot of the advantages you get from a larger sensor.

 

Lifeisfun

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In this one im most interested in the tracking from the front, which it seems like nobody experiments with enough. In his brief try you can see that if you start it out far enough in front it will track backwards for a while. Also, good to see it confirmed that you can track in hdr mode. That mode is looking really good to me, giving you a lot of the advantages you get from a larger sensor.
That looks pretty good but the environment was fairly easy to navigate, any trees around and it wouldn't end well swiping sideways. If they make the front tracking more reliable (as particular function) that would make lots of people happy :)
 

Hiflyer808

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That looks pretty good but the environment was fairly easy to navigate, any trees around and it wouldn't end well swiping sideways. If they make the front tracking more reliable (as particular function) that would make lots of people happy :)
Agreed. I was just starting to wonder if it would track from in front at all.. The Skydio is miles better than any other when it comes to tracking while flying backwards.
 

skydioconvert

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Kind of an unfair and one sided comparison to claim the MA2 is better than the Skydio 2 in a particular area unless "BOTH" appear in videos given the exact same conditions and flight path.

Unless both drones were flown under exactly the same conditions a legitimate comparison can "NOT" be made.

Produce side by side videos like this and then and only then can others can make a fair comparison... until then personal bias clouds any comparison.
 

OldBlueHeron

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Kind of an unfair and one sided comparison to claim the MA2 is better than the Skydio 2 in a particular area unless "BOTH" appear in videos given the exact same conditions and flight path.

Unless both drones were flown under exactly the same conditions a legitimate comparison can "NOT" be made.

Produce side by side videos like this and then and only then can others can make a fair comparison... until then personal bias clouds any comparison.
@@
 

Jafemu

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The Skydio2 is obviously better tracking in the worst terrain, but if you want a nice aerial view tracking from 100 feet up, the MA2 wins. And with the beacon, WHY can Skydio2 not handle that small task?
 
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Hiflyer808

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Kind of an unfair and one sided comparison to claim the MA2 is better than the Skydio 2 in a particular area unless "BOTH" appear in videos given the exact same conditions and flight path.

Unless both drones were flown under exactly the same conditions a legitimate comparison can "NOT" be made.

Produce side by side videos like this and then and only then can others can make a fair comparison... until then personal bias clouds any comparison.
Obviously not a comparison at all. Just another piece of data in the collection of evidence of how both drones perform. In this case, just the Air 2, while others showcase only the Skydio 2. But while a video featuring just one video doesn't prove anything scientifically, we can make reasonable inferences based on comparing with other videos featuring similar conditions. And in this case it is reasonable to say that the Skydio would PROBABLY have not performed as well. Again, not proof of anything, but another good piece of evidence for the case that over all, the Air 2 performs somewhat better than the Skydio at tracking from behind at slow to medium speeds.
 
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Hiflyer808

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Here's a good example of what the Skydio does best. I don't need a direct comparison to know the Air 2 would fare much worse in this situation. I would certainly want to do my tracking using the beacon. I hope they add to its functionality.
 

skydioconvert

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The Skydio2 is obviously better tracking in the worst terrain, but if you want a nice aerial view tracking from 100 feet up, the MA2 wins. And with the beacon, WHY can Skydio2 not handle that small task?
??? There are plenty of videos showing the S2 nicely tracking a target from near those heights.

BTW, whether your talking MA2 or S2 its no small task to stay locked on to a moving target.

There's a long way to go before machines can do the job as well humans do.
 

skydioconvert

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Obviously not a comparison at all. Just another piece of data in the collection of evidence of how both drones perform. In this case, just the Air 2, while others showcase only the Skydio 2. But while a video featuring just one video doesn't prove anything scientifically, we can make reasonable inferences based on comparing with other videos featuring similar conditions. And in this case it is reasonable to say that the Skydio would PROBABLY have not performed as well. Again, not proof of anything, but another good piece of evidence for the case that over all, the Air 2 performs somewhat better than the Skydio at tracking from behind at slow to medium speeds.
You can make all the inferences and assertions you want but it will always come down to opinions without a side by side comparison.
 

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