First Person View (FPV)

First Person View provides you with a true pilot’s eye view while flying by placing a video camera and transmitter on your vehicle paired with a receiver and either an LCD or goggles on the ground. An optional OSD (On Screen Display) helps maintain orientation by providing aircraft instrument overlay on your FPV monitor.

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Connection diagram

Here is a wiring diagram created by IVC for a TBS Discovery Quadcopter that includes an APM2 and MinimOSD:

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FPV equipment on the vehicle should be placed as far away as possible from GPS and RC receiver to reduce the chance of interference.

Minim OSD setup through mission planner

The MinimOSD set-up guide can be found here.

Integrated OSD

Many autopilots now integrate the OSD function on board, eliminating the need for an external device and reducing wiring.

User Videos / Blogs

Richard Evan’s FPV flight footage (recorded from the ground station) of his Copter based quadcopter including MinimOSD

Stefan Cenkov’s FPV flight footage (recoded from the ground station) of his Plane running on VrBrain including MinimOSD.

Robert Mcintosh’s in Lone Pine California FPV Flight with HD video footage from GoPro camera

Euan Ramsey’s APM2 powered TBS Discovery. Note the TBS frame spreads the 2 front arms apart so the blades don’t interfere with the FPV and allow the camera to easily be mounted in front

Safety Warnings Relating Specifically to FPV Flight

  • Because of the limited field-of-view of the FPV camera you may not be able to easily see obstacles near the vehicle which may be why the Academy of Model Aeronautics requires that there be a second person acting as spotter for all FPV flights.
  • Be ready for loss of FPV video caused by flying beyond your FPV systems limits or interference from structures between you and the vehicle. Being able to invoke the vehicle’s RTL mode is a worthwhile safety feature even though most countries require FPV operation within line of sight of the operator.
  • Know and recognize the FPV signal loss warning signs and be ready to shed the FPV equipment and retake line-of-sight control at all times.
  • FPV equipment can interfere with the vehicle’s radio or GPS if placed too close.

Government/Local Regulations

FPV flight regulations imposed by countries and localities vary greatly and are constantly evolving. Be sure you know the applicable restrictions. Also, be aware that FPV transmitters may have restrictions on frequency bands and power that vary from country to country, as well as requirements for licensing.