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Test today - couple things

dmac1

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Took S2 out for a follow me session in some pretty wide open national forest, but there were a few groves of trees to go through. This was only 4th flight session for S2, so with the trees its gettin a quick indoctrination.

Anyway, it did great in the trees. Wound through some stuff thats actually kinda scary to watch. It got stuck twice when the path it selected was too dense. Once it went down to find a way through, but I think the height floor actually prevented it from going under what it was 'looking at'. I flew it out both times and continued on. All was well, till I messed up late in the flight..thats the reason for the question, but first:

An issue - the footage is too saturated. Its like HDR is on, but its not. Has anyone noticed that issue post update? I'm thinking its this drone's camera. I'm running the same filter I had always used before (ND8). With my other drone, I think I always set the exposure to -.5....I did that with this one on the 2nd flight (pics below from 1st flight) and the footage is a little dark. Again, the issue is color saturation...its too much and will hafta be edited down.

Examples:

The soil was a little reddish, but not that red.
Rainbow Falls too vivid_1.1.2 25.jpg

Similar...the grasses weren't that yellow...the trees look ok and so does the trail....its just a little too much saturation. Wish I had phone pics for comparison.
Rainbow Falls too vivid3_1.2.2 25.jpg

Question - Did the update eliminate the settings for where S2 is supposed to go if/when we lose connection with the drone? Used to be, you could have it return to launch point or last point where it had GPS signal. I can't find those settings!

I had an incident today (my fault) where S2 was returning to (I dunno where it was going) and I got near it and watched it land itself in a grassy area (like pic above). Was close call #2 for me. But where was it going? Looked like back to launch point, but I dunno! It didn't even get close.

I have the return behavior sliders all the way right, so max delay before it takes off and max delay before landing and 20 mph return looking where its going....its battery was dying so it landed. My thinking on those settings was to give me max time to get to it, but it didn't seem to work. It didn't get close to whereever it was going....my Mavic knew how much battery it needed to return and flew accordingly...or was supposed to anyway....I never tested that aspect.
 
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dmac1

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I found the info I was looking for regarding settings for in event you lose connection.

When following a subject

If home point is set:

If you set a home point on the map within the Skydio 2 app and are tracking a subject, Skydio 2 will continue to follow the subject for 20 seconds, or until the vehicle needs to return home due to a low battery (whichever occurs first). After tracking has stopped, Skydio 2 will return to the home point.

If NO home point is set:

If you did not set a home point and are tracking a subject, Skydio 2 will continue to track for 20 seconds. After that time, it will return to the last location it was actively tracking a subject while connected.

When NOT following a subject

If home point is set:

Skydio 2 will return to the home point you have set.

If NO home point is set:

If you do not have a home point set and you lose comms, Skydio 2 will go to the last location that a subject was tracked since launch. If there was no subject tracked in this flight, Skydio 2 will return to the launch point.
 
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dmac1

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Well, I did some more testing. This time camera only.

On my replacement S2, EV needs to be 0 (my original one it needed to be -.5) and per the 2 images in first post of this thread, with HDR off the images from replacement S2 appear too saturated.

So I did these tests today to try to figure out whats what.

3 shots kinda tell the tale, but its NOT what I was expecting. With HDR on (only avail in 4k)) the imagery is more realistic, but it still doesn't look right. In my original S2, HDR off was best and I thought it was accurate.

HDR on, 4k:
HDR High 25.jpg

HDR off, 4k:
No HDR High 25.jpg

HDR off SD:
No HDR HD High 25.jpg

Whats right? Well, the light is not the same, but this Mavic pic shows that there isn't as much saturation/dark areas as the HDR off pics show. I may try another Mavic pic tomorrow when the sun is higher and edit it in for better comparison.

MavicPro High.jpg

Another for comparison, from my phone, unenhanced, taken same time as S2 pics.

Field phone pic.jpg

Lets try 2 more:

HDR on 4k:
HDR1 25.jpg

HDR off 4k:
No HDR1 25.jpg

Its tougher to distinguish those 2, but my jacket and jeans (all colors actually) are a little lighter with HDR on. I swear my old drone was opposite...HDR on was too vivid.

Anyway, one thing is apparent, HDR on gives better definition in shadows...look at the wall left side of pic. Almost black with HDR off. (if you can zoom in on the wall, like I can on the originals you can even better see the difference).

Is this how you guys' S2 imagery is? Frankly, even the HDR on images look too saturated (too much yellow). to me. And the Mavic pic really doesn't help till I can get it with sunlight, hopefully tomorrow. Anybody else have some test pics?
 
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dmac1

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A screen shot of the 3 best. The phone pic is at the bottom and is accurate from ground level. Hopefully the Mavic pic will be good tomorrow...I need to check its settings, haven't used it in a couple years...hardly remembered how to turn it on.

Comparisons.jpg
 

kgilbertsen

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Are you thinking they tweaked their HDR settings in the new firmware? Or that the two drones' camera's are giving different results?

What software do you use for processing your images?
 

dmac1

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Are you thinking they tweaked their HDR settings in the new firmware? Or that the two drones' camera's are giving different results?

What software do you use for processing your images?
I dunno about your first question...but it looks to me like 2 drone's cameras are giving different results.

I distinctly remember doing these exact tests with my first drone. HDR on was over the top, I'll call it, vivid. Very unrealistic, so I went with HDR off all the time and all was well...other than imagery is always too sharp. I dulled it in editing.

I usually view the imagery via VLC, but have used Windows Media Player as well. To capture the stills (and edit vids), I use Davinci Resolve. None of that has changed, same computer, same monitors, and I'm pretty sure same SD card in the drone. When I showed my son the footage from the other day, he was same as me....too saturated.

Once the sun gets on that field, I'm going to try again, and will try removing the ND8 filter to hopefully provide apples to apples comparison to Mavic, and phone. I never took ND8 off my original drone.

One thing I've thought of, yesterday's images of that field were sorta looking toward the sun. This morning's will be different. The field is my neighbor's and is south of me, so I'm gonna fly to east edge and see what I get.
 
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Ridefreak

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Try to do it in the testing middle of the day, lower sun angles affects the auto white balance settings. You can see the picture's improvement in the last 2 shots where the sun is behind the drone. The difference in HDR vs Std in those 2 pics looks typical to me. The others appear to be affected by the sun's angle. I've found the ND filter doesn't really fix that issue when the sun is intensity is encroaching on the pic. I've had to go so far as to cut a scene when the drone swings around facing towards the sun so I could process that part of the scene differently. Its also worse this time of year, as you've seen anytime you drive west in the late afternoon. Mid day comparisons will be more telling for what your trying to determine. I'd also suggest taking some comparisons without the ND at that time.

BTW, nice spread Dave
 

dmac1

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Did some testing...doesn't look like we'll be getting any Mavic pics. The dang thing suddenly started flying back and forth while I was adjusting the EV Comp (it was overexposed) and before I could react, it was stuck about 30' up a ponderosa. :-(

I bet the ccp did that to it via satellite connection while they stole my highly valuable imagery!! LOL

I tried to get it via ladder and a 12' tree pruner, but I can't get the ladder waay up there cuz its too heavy when its that far out and too many branches, so I'd hafta get waaay out on the end of the ladder at about 20' and try to poke it with the pruner and it ain't worth it.

No wind right now, so it won't be gettin dislodged soon. Eventually it will....I wonder if I could string up a net of some sort to hopefully catch it. This ain't its first time in the trees....I backed it in one once when I was checkin gutters with it.

S2 pics later...via app the results looked similar to whats above.
 
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dmac1

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Mid day comparisons will be more telling for what your trying to determine. I'd also suggest taking some comparisons without the ND at that time.

BTW, nice spread Dave
I did late morning...wanted sun like you said....less angle.

Thanks about the property! Everyone on this side of the county road has 5 acres. Other side, 40-80. Wish we were over there! Lotsa ponderosas in this whole area. I'll post up an aerial shot later.
 
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dmac1

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Well...., based on my testing, what settings are best depends upon lighting, No clear cut best, at least with my drone and based on my neighbor's field. I think I'm gonna keep shooting with HDR off and ND8 on and desaturate in editing as needed. I think the results will be closest to real. I can post up a set of test pics if someone is interested.

Heres a look at our hood. The arrow points to about where Mav is, prolly a little lower. Thats 3 ponderosas close together, he's about 1/2 way in to the trunk. The tree with the line over it is ~25' tall. My walking test path is left and right from where I'm standing. Too many trees for follow me on bike in the yard....my neighbor's field would be great, but we're not exactly best buddies.

The Hood 25 marked.jpg
 
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kgilbertsen

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In my very limited experience with the drone, that is what I have decided on as well. To me the HDR is just a little over the top with it's processing - I feel I can get a more realistic result on my own.
Good luck with your Mavic retrieval!
 
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dmac1

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In my very limited experience with the drone, that is what I have decided on as well. To me the HDR is just a little over the top with it's processing - I feel I can get a more realistic result on my own.
Good luck with your Mavic retrieval!
Thanks! I bought an el cheapo big net on Azon today, should be here tomorrow. If it gets here in time, gonna string it across underneath the tree and hope the wind blows Mav out before we get any precip. Worst case, I'll get my 128gb SD card back some day.
 

dmac1

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Flew S2 up for a look at Mav. I can actually see a little better with binoculars from below vs from the side, but heres S2's view.

Here it is:
Mav in tree3 circled 25.jpg

He's hanging nearly vertically from his right front leg. You're seeing mostly left side and some underside and a little of front. Hes a Mavic Pro.
Mav in tree3 closeup 25.jpg

I colored some of him (or is it a her?) so you can maybe tell whats what. The blob is his nose, camera is round structure just below on left. The nearly horizontal line is his left front leg which juts downwards from his arm when he is horizontal., the nearly vertical line is his left rear arm (props are attached to each arm). He doesn't have rear legs, sits on ground at a raked up angle.
Mav in tree3 closeup 25 drawing.jpg

I dunno if wind will dislodge Mav cuz of how he's hanging....the neighboring tree would be better climbing than the one he is in, but he's quite a ways from it. Not thrilled about that even though I have technical climbing gear. The tree in the foreground is the 25' one I drew a line over yesterday. Mav is about 38' off the ground.

Mav in tree distant arrow 25.jpg
 

kgilbertsen

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Flew S2 up for a look at Mav. I can actually see a little better with binoculars from below vs from the side, but heres S2's view.

Here it is:
View attachment 509

He's hanging nearly vertically from his right front leg. You're seeing mostly left side and some underside and a little of front. Hes a Mavic Pro.
View attachment 510

I colored some of him (or is it a her?) so you can maybe tell whats what. The blob is his nose, camera is round structure just below on left. The nearly horizontal line is his left front leg which juts downwards from his arm when he is horizontal., the nearly vertical line is his left rear arm (props are attached to each arm). He doesn't have rear legs, sits on ground at a raked up angle.
View attachment 511

I dunno if wind will dislodge Mav cuz of how he's hanging....the neighboring tree would be better climbing than the one he is in, but he's quite a ways from it. Not thrilled about that even though I have technical climbing gear. The tree in the foreground is the 25' one I drew a line over yesterday. Mav is about 38' off the ground.

View attachment 514
Frustrating for sure. That's up there.
 

dmac1

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Frustrating for sure. That's up there.
Yep. And my net is up too. Just finished stringing it. Hope I dont catch a neighbor's cat...he has at least 7. Its windy now. Best chance to get it for awhile will be now-this eve. The wife is thrilled with step ladders positioned as net supports. LOL!
 
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kgilbertsen

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Yep. And my net is up too. Just finished stringing it. Hope I dont catch a neighbor's cat...he has at least 7. Its windy now. Best chance to get it for awhile will be now-this eve. The wife is thrilled with step ladders positioned as net supports. LOL!
Haha! Pictures or it didn't happen.
 

dmac1

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Haha! Pictures or it didn't happen.
Mav is still hangin up high. Ordered a 30' long pole with a hook on the end. Might snow Thurs...pole supposed to be here Fri. I figure, with where I live, even if its too late for Mav, it might be good to have. I was readin the reviews and one guy said its flimsy, but he uses it to retrieve drones out of trees. That sold me. LOL

Not exactly circus grade netting.
Net 40.jpg
 

kgilbertsen

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Mav is still hangin up high. Ordered a 30' long pole with a hook on the end. Might snow Thurs...pole supposed to be here Fri. I figure, with where I live, even if its too late for Mav, it might be good to have. I was readin the reviews and one guy said its flimsy, but he uses it to retrieve drones out of trees. That sold me. LOL

Not exactly circus grade netting.
View attachment 516
Ha! I wouldn't want to count on it if my name was Wallenda, but it'll save your Mavic!
 
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dmac1

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Got Mav out of the tree yesteday via the 30' pole I got and a ladder. Broke his left front leg on the way down when he landed on a branch on the way down, but I think that will be repairable. Initially thought the whole arm was broken off, but it folded in, so major disaster averted.

It snowed a little while he was up there, so I'm waiting another day to make sure any water evaporates before I plug in a charged battery. At nearly 40' up, all I could do with the pole was dislodge him and hope for the best in the fall. The net saved him from a likely more catastrophic landing in the rocks (under the pine needles).

In the net:
Mav in net 25.jpg

I'm guessin that vertical piece that is wired to his left front arm and that was apparently inside his left front leg, is part of the gps antenna. There is/was an LED in there too. The wire is still soldered on, but possibly some of the LED got broken. Not buyin any parts till I see if he powers up.

Mav table 25.jpg
 

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