Sunday 4 February 2018

My FPV gear

FPV Goggles, cameras and video transmitters.

I strongly recommend trying goggles on before you buy. They must suit your vision, Inter Pupilary Distance IPD and the shape of your face. Idealy I would like a bit more IPD and focus adjustment to suit my vision and big head. For normal reading I need +1.0 diopter glasses.

My goggles are  Aomway Commander V1S goggles Much cheaper than FatSharks but with a decent quality 16:9 picture and DVR recording. Supplied with excellent patch and cloverleaf antennas and the diversity receivers give great range. Range of 3km on 200mW is possible in perfect conditions.

In the single screen goggles I like the Headplay SE box.
I needed to fit the included RHO narrower view lenses to see the screen clearly.
Spectacular viewing experience but limited by the lack of diversity receivers. Supplied with an add-on DVR unit

My preferred antennas are 5.8GHz Right handed circular polarised Aomway  clover leaf

They come in SMA or RP-SMA connector style,  and you need to choose the correct style to match your goggles and video transmitter. SMA antennas have a prong, RP-SMA have a hole.

My preferred Video transmitter (VTx) is the TS5823L  Eachine 200mW 40ch TS5823L 
It is compact and has a single push button to select channels and a single digit LED display.
The wires are stiff and delicate so need to be handled carefully.

There is a TS5823S version with a 5V regulator onboard, but I found this produced diagonal lines in the FPV feed.

Antenna connector is RP-SMA

Video transmitters come in a variety of power ratings.
25mW for small park flying and racing
200mW for general FPV
600mW for longer range, but be aware this will cause more interference to others. Only use if no-one else is flying FPV nearby.

VTx connection
I solder on a female servo-style connector to the Red, Black and Yellow wires for Power, Ground and Video signal. The other two wires are for Audio which I don't use.

I like a dedicated FPV camera like the Runcam Sparrow or Eagle 2 Pro. They are both swappable from 16:9 to 4:3 aspect ratio and have wide dynamic range and battery voltage displayed on screen.

My latest favourite camera is the Runcam Phoenix 2. It's a lot smaller and cheaper than the Eagle but with great image quality.  It doesn't have OSD voltage.

It is possible to use the TV out signal from an HD camera like a Mobius or GoPro, but it is not as safe as a stand alone FPV camera. Any issues with the HD camera recording or battery could interfere with your FPV view.

More information on that here - Other FPV cameras 

To connect the camera to the VTx I solder on a male servo-style connector to the +V, Ground and Yellow. If the camera also has Voltage display capability I connect the Voltage sensor wire to directly to the Red +V wire so I can see the flight battery voltage on screen.

The camera and VTx can be safely powered from the 3S or 4S flight battery. I use a servo style Y lead with one end changed to a female balance plug (3S or 4S as required) for power. The Y lead provides flight battery voltage to the camera and VTx as well as passing the video signal from the camera to the VTx

For a swappable FPV rig I use heat bent PVC plastic to make up a small mount.

This compact FPV backpack can be mounted with tape or velcro on to any plane.

All of this gear is available from Banggood via the links above, and these category links
BANGGOOD website


  1. Good tips. I think from now on im going to only get fpv cameras that have built in osd for voltage display. saves a lot of fiddling around.

    1. That's right Nathan, it's all you need most of the time