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If this will be your first time ordering from Banggood, you should know a few things.

PRE-BUILT QUADS

I didn’t expect this. I guess I should have seen it coming, but I didn’t. People who are interested in the DJI FPV system are more interested in buying pre-built quads than in building their own. So I’m putting this section at the top of the page. Here are some pre-built, pre-tuned, totally ready to fly options for DJI FPV!

All of the pre-built quads listed here are designed to be flown with the DJI Controller. If you prefer to use a different controller and receiver, you can install one, or in some cases, you might be able to ask the vendor to install it for you.

ROTOR RIOT HD1

Purchase at Rotor Riot

The Rotor Riot HD1 build-and-tuned bundle lets you fly the exact same quad that Rotor Riot pilots fly on their YouTube channel. The HD1 frame is simple, durable, but largely unremarkable.

The most compelling part of this bundle is that you get your choice of pilot-branded motors. Each motor has different performance characteristics to suit your style. The Hypetrain Freestyle V2 is my pick for a general purpose motor. The Le Drib motor gives a bit more power (and shorter flight time) with a linear throttle curve. The Vortex motor has similar power to the Drib, but with a little more punch at the top end.

This kit has two main down-sides. The HD1 frame has been stretched to fit the Air Unit into it, which results in a longer, less nimble frame. The un-supported length of top plate between the standoffs seems less than ideal, although Rotor Riot reports that none have broken in their testing. Finally, the X-style geometry means props are prominently visible in the HD camera’s view, which some pilots don’t like.

LUMENIER QAV-R 2 HD BUNDLE

Purchase at GetFPV

With the release of the DJI FPV system, some designers are stretching their frames to make the Air Unit fit. This results in a quad that, put simply, flies worse. Lumenier has found a way to carry the Air Unit in its QAV-R 2 frame without changing the frame’s geometry. So you don’t compromise handling to get HD video. In addition, the H-style geometry minimizes or eliminates props from the camera’s view.

Lumenier’s Zip 2407 motors make ridiculous amounts of power and are pretty durable, but they definitely need to be paired with a capable battery to perform at their best. This combo comes with the patented POPO system for fast propeller swaps with no wrench.

GetFPV’s technical support is one of the best in the business. The Lumenier kit can be purchased with a ticket for 30 minutes (or more) of phone support.

The biggest criticism I have of this kit is the way the accessories are mounted. The antennas are placed below the top plate, which can reduce range, and they are placed exactly where an antenna will strike, so I would expect they might be damaged in a crash. The camera mounts and Air Unit mount allow these components to be knocked out of position in a crash.

DIATONE ROMA F5 V2 HD

Purchase at RaceDayQuads – Air Unit / Vista
Purchase at GetFPV – Air Unit / Vista
Purchase at Pyro Drone – Air Unit / Vista
Purchase at Banggood – Air Unit / Vista
Purchase at Amazon – Air Unit / Vista

The Diatone Roma F5 is one of the best bind-n-fly 5″ freestyle quads you can buy. V2 of the Roma fixed most of the small complaints with the V1. The arms have been redesigned to be thicker at the base and the M2 sized screws have been replaced with M3. The front end also been changed from aluminum to steel. The result is an impeccably designed, beautiful, and great-flying 5″ freestyle quad.

CATALYST MACHINEWORKS BANGGOD

Purchase at Catalyst Machineworks

The BangGod might be the highest-performing and most durable of the pre-built quads on this page. Everything about it is premium, but the T-Motor F80 motors really stand out. These are absolute beasts. (Confusingly, Catalyst pairs them with a wimpy 5043 prop–they can easily handle more.)

The main weakness of this build is its weight. The DJI Air Unit adds weight; the motors add weight; the BangGod frame isn’t particularly light; and it’s designed to fly with a porky 1300 mAh 6S battery. Make no mistake, this quad will rip, but especially if you add a GoPro to it, you will feel the weight in corners and your batteries will hate you at the end of every flight.

Think of the BangGod more like a 600 horsepower Cadillac than a light-weight sportscar and you’ll get the idea.

 

THE BEST, FIRST, DJI QUAD
IFLIGHT TITAN DC2

Purchase at GetFPV

If you want to get into high-definition FPV, and you’ve never flown a quad at all, then the iFlight Titan DC2 should be high on the list as your first. It’s one of the smallest DJI-capable quads available, with prop guards to keep you, your pets, your house, and the quad itself safer when you crash. With 2″ props, it’s a little heavy and under-powered, but as a beginner, that’ll work in your favor. It’s even got a full Air Unit (vs. the Caddx Vista) so you’ll get high-quality onboard recording, full-range and image quality, and more tolerance to heat buildup.

Many people who get into FPV want to start with a powerful 5″ quadcopter like the pro’s use. That can be a bit like handing the keys to a Corvette to a 16-year-old. The quad gets smashed, and you’re lucky if you don’t injure yourself. A smaller quad like the DC2 is safer, easier to learn on, and is still pretty fun to fly even after you get enough experience to move on to a bigger quad.

Flying DJI FPV doesn’t have to mean you give up micro-sized quads. The iFlight Alpha A85 is one of the best tiny quads built to carry the DJI HD system. The A85 was designed for smooth, cinematic flying and long flight time (about 5-7 minutes). Prop guards make it safe(r) to fly indoors and help keep you in the air if you bounce off the wall.

There are definitely some tradeoffs involved in getting DJI into a quad this small. If you want lots of power for racing or freestyle, you’ll need to be looking at a 3″ prop or larger. Compared to other quads this size, the a85 is heavier and more powerful, so you won’t have as easy a time flying it indoors as a lighter analog unit. The Caddx Nebula camera is lighter, but has worse image quality than the Vista or Air Unit camera used in larger quads. Fortunately, iFlight also sells a version that comes with the Caddx Polar Nano camera. This camera has pretty decent image quality, but at least for now, it seems to only be sold from the iFlight web site and not any other local stores.

If you want one of the smallest, lightest DJI-capable quads possible, the Alpha A85 is the one I recommend.

WHEN YOU DON’T EVER WANT TO STOP FLYING
FLYWOO EXPLORER LR HD V2 4″

Purchase at Banggood
Purchase at RaceDayQuads
Purchase at GetFPV

The Flywoo Explorer defines a new category of FPV quadcopter: sub-250 long-range 4″. This quad’s goal is to give the longest possible flight time while staying under the 250-gram legal weight limit that exists in some places. Even if weight isn’t your concern, this quad is worth a look.

The Flywoo Explorer LR is not ideal for racing or freestyle acrobatics. But there’s just something awesome about flying wherever you want for 10+ minutes at a time without worrying if you’re going to failsafe or run out of battery.

Since long-range is a key aspect of enjoying this quad, the Crossfire or DJI PnP receiver option is strongly recommended. If you get the FrSky receiver option, range will be severely limited.

The Evoque is iFlight’s evolution of the Nazgul platform, which has always been a solid entry in the 5″ freestyle category. The Evoque adds cosmetic touches like LED light pipes integrated into the arms and side plates. In order to keep the frame light and compact, while still fitting the electronics into the side plates, iFlight has used 20mm sized electronics instead of the 30mm more commonly used in this class. Although this could have reduced durability, I performed some, frankly, abusive, testing of the ESC and it held up. So for now it gets a pass.

The Evoque can be ordered in both “dead cat” and “X” geometry. The “dead cat” geometry pushes the front motors out and back, which means you won’t see the front props in your DJI camera view. The tradeoff is that the asymmetrical motor geometry affects the quad’s flight characteristics a little bit. The “X” geometry is more neutral and handles a little better, but you’ll see props in your DJI camera view. If you carry a GoPro, you shouldn’t see props in view on either of the versions, unless you have very low uptilt.

DJI FPV SYSTEM

DJI has finally brought FPV into the high-definition era. Until now, FPV pilots settled for a low-resolution, blurry image that turned into static when signal got weak. So why did we all use analog? Previous HD FPV systems all disappointed with excessive cost, high latency, unreliable link, and poor build quality.

The DJI digital high-definition FPV system is the first to actually make HD FPV “just work”. Range is about the same as typical 5.8 GHz analog systems, but in glorious HD resolution. Latency is excellent at best and tolerable at worst. Setup and installation are simple, especially with new flight controllers that are designed for one-plug connection to the Air Unit. The goggle screen is huge, bright, clear, and colorful. The menus are intuitive and easy to use. Everything about the system has the polish and performance that DJI customers have come to take for granted.

The DJI system is legitimately good. But it’s not perfect. What are the drawbacks? Compared to a ultra-premium analog system, the DJI system is not too much more expensive. But a budget analog system can get you into the air for a fraction of the price. The DJI system is bigger than an analog system, so installing it in a frame can be tricky (see below on this page for frames specifically designed to fit the DJI Air Unit and Caddx Vista). The DJI goggles are not a perfect fit for most people’s faces. There is light-leak around the bottom and nose, and some people find them uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time. (Aftermarket goggle foam can sometimes fix this.)

The biggest caveat when deciding whether to buy the DJI FPV system is how it interacts with other pilots using traditional analog systems. If you’re using DJI goggles, your friends using analog goggles can’t watch your FPV feeds. (You can still receive analog signals using a receiver module and the DJI goggles’ AV input.) Another drawback is that the DJI system can only show some of the flight controller’s on-screen-display information. This means some important troubleshooting information is not available. However, DJI has been adding more OSD elements in each firmware update, so this may change in the future.

All that being said, the emotional impact of flying in HD is profound. The more I fly the DJI system, the more I love it, and the harder it is to go back to standard-definition analog. Unfortunately, this is impossible to convey via a web page or YouTube video. So if you get the chance to try out the DJI system yourself, do it. But be careful, because you might find yourself pulling out your credit card when you didn’t mean to.

The DJI FPV goggles might be the best FPV goggle ever made. The FOV is adjustable from 30° to 54°. The screens are 1440×810 resolution; the video link is 720p resolution at 120 Hz. People sometimes look at Fat Shark goggles and say, “For that price, we should get a lot more!” With the DJI FPV goggle, you do (but no, there’s not a power button).

If you want to use the DJI FPV system, you must use the DJI goggles. It doesn’t work with analog goggles–not even those that have an HDMI input.

Can you use the DJI goggles with your existing analog vTX? Sort of. The DJI goggles don’t have a built-in analog receiver, but they do have an AV input that can be connected to a ground station, and several manufacturers make adapters that let you mount a traditional analog module onto the goggle. The AV input has about 15 ms more latency than a dedicated analog goggle, but many pilots find it acceptable.

Let’s get one thing out of the way: you do NOT have to use the DJI controller to use the DJI FPV system. You can use the Air Unit and Goggles as a self-contained video system. You can continue to use your existing controller and receivers to control the quad. In fact, if you use Crossfire or R9 900 MHz control systems, you might want to keep using your existing controller, because their range is greater than the DJI system.

Who should be thinking about buying the DJI controller? The DJI controller has excellent build quality. The main thing going against it is that it only works with the DJI Air Unit and Caddx Vista. You can’t fly any non-DJI quad with it. So if you only intend to fly aircraft with the DJI system, the DJI controller offers a much easier-to-use and better integrated solution. But if you intend to fly any aircraft without the DJI system, you would probably want to skip the DJI controller and get something else.

When the DJI FPV system first released, there was basically only one choice to make: which vTX do you want? The full sized Air Unit or the smaller Vista. Now, the situation has gotten more confusing. DJI has handed off distribution of the FPV system to Caddx and Runcam, meaning there are more products to decide between. But the decision isn’t actually as complicated as it seems.

First thing to keep in mind is that the video transmitters (vTX) are all identical. Whether you buy a Caddx Air Unit Lite or a Runcam Link vTX doesn’t matter. They’re completely identical in every way, and we even suspect (but can’t prove) that the vTX are manufactured by DJI and just re-labeled as Caddx or Runcam. The cameras, on the other hand, are manufactured by Caddx and Runcam, and are not the same.

First, you have to choose which vTX you want. There are two choices: the full sized Air Unit (Caddx calls this the Air Unit Micro), with two antennas and an SD Card slot, or the smaller Air Unit Lite (previously known as the Caddx Vista vTX). The Air Unit Lite saves about 20 grams compared to the Air Unit and doesn’t have a built in DVR. It has 20mm mounting holes and will fit in the rear of most 5″ freestyle frames, as well as many smaller frames. For a typical freestyle build, most pilots prefer the Air Unit Lite. If you strongly prefer to have an on-board DVR, such as if you don’t plan to carry a GoPro, then the full size Air Unit would be your pick. Bear in mind the larger Air Unit requires a larger frame, so the weight difference between the two ends up being more than just the 20 gram difference between the two vTX.

Second, choose a camera. The main distinction between cameras is whether they support 120fps or 60fps refresh rate. The 120fps cameras have lower latency of about 25 to 35 ms, while the 60fps cameras are more like 35-45 ms. Pilots disagree over whether this small difference matters. It depends a lot on the type of flying you do.

Although it’s not directly related to the framerate, 120fps cameras can also adjust image settings like exposure, saturation, and white balance. They can also switch between 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratio; all of the 60 fps cameras are 16:9 aspect ratio only.
The original DJI camera, the Caddx Nebula Pro, and the camera that is sold with the Caddx Air Unit Micro (which is just a Nebula Pro in a different shaped case) are the only 120fps cameras available for the DJI FPV system today. All others are 60 fps. If you want the lowest latency possible, you’ll need to pick one of these. Fortunately, they also have the best image quality and resolution. Unfortunately, the sensor used in these cameras is more expensive and difficult to get, so they’re often out of stock.

If you’re ok with a 60 fps camera, then you’ll choose based on image quality and size/weight. The Caddx Polar and Runcam Phoenix HD both have worse image quality than the original DJI camera or Nebula Pro, but still acceptable to some. Neither one is clearly superior to the other, and you should compare them in reviews to decide which one you prefer.

For night-time use, the Caddx Polar Micro is the only DJI camera with great low-light sensitivity. It’s a 60 fps camera, but that’s a compromise you’ll have to accept.

If you want the smallest, lightest DJI camera possible (such as for a tootphick-style quad), your choice should be the Caddx Polar Nano. The only other nano-sized camera, the Nebula Nano, has much worse image quality. The Nebula Nano is not unusable per se, but the Polar Nano is much better, and their size/weight is the same.

FRAMES FOR AIR UNIT

The DJI Air Unit is bigger than analog video transmitters and many modern frames simply can’t fit it. But the overwhelming popularity of the DJI system has frame designers scrambling to build frames specifically intended to carry the DJI Air Unit. Here are a few of the best.

CHEAPEST WORTH HAVING
ROTOR RIOT HD1

Purchase at Rotor Riot

The HD1 is based on the community-designed Rotor Riot CL1 frame. It’s been stretched to hold the Air Unit, and it comes with 3D printed parts to mount the camera and antennas.

The HD1 uses a classic 2-plate design, which is simple to build, roomy, and durable. It’s capable of mounting both 30mm and 20mm flight controllers, with an additional 20mm mounting section in the rear. It has interchangeable arms so you can easily swap one if it breaks or if the end gets too scuffed up.

The CL1 was designed to be affordable, and the HD1 continues that tradition. If you’re looking for a basic frame to carry your DJI system securely, the HD1 is the one you’ll buy.

INTRICATE BUT NOT DELICATE
CATALYST MACHINEWORKS BANGGOD

Purchase at Catalyst Machineworks

Catalyst Machineworks makes some of the most innovative frames today. In the past, I’ve criticized some of their designs as too complicated for everyday use. But with the BangGod, I think they got it just right. It carries over the features of earlier frames, such as shock-absorbing front end, infinitely adjustable camera mount, and reinforcing front brace. At the same time, it opens up the frame to a more livable 22mm height, with open access for easy maintenance. This is a hell of a good frame, from a fantastic designer who deserves your support.

You should also pick up the 3D printed mount for the DJI antennas.

The link above goes to the 5″ version of the frame, but it also comes in 6″ and 7″ versions if that’s what you’re looking for.

In case you’re wondering about the name, Catalyst got tired of their frames being cloned–sometimes without even changing the name! So they named this frame as a way of thumbing their nose at the cloners. (I suggested they just name it the F. U.)

BANDO BASHER, WITH SMOOTH FLOW
LE DRIB SKYELINER HD

Purchase at Rotor Riot

APEX HD Frame

Le Drib is known for his smooth flow and impeccable lines, even when ripping through the abandoned buildings of his home town, Detroit. His signature frame, the Skyeliner, strikes the perfect balance between durability, agility, and easy build and maintenance.

Notable design features include a vertical-plate front camera cage, which protects the camera and allows for easy adjustment of uptilt angle. Arms are interchangeable for fast repairs, even in the field. Vertical standoffs have been added behind the camera cage to reinforce this area, which tended to break on the 1st revision of the frame. Although the long, unsupported top plate looks like a weak spot, Drib swears he’s never broken one, and if anybody is qualified to crash-test a frame, it’s him.

APEX HD Frame

When ImpulseRC dropped the original Alien frame, it re-defined what a mini quad frame could be. Now, the Apex puts ImpulseRC back on the map. It’s a low-deck design for centralized weight and neutral, responsive handling. It’s based on the simple two-plate, removable-arm design pioneered by the original Alien, which means maintenance is easy. The Apex comes with accessories like skids to protect the arms when landing (or crashing) and covers to protect the wires from bent props.

DJI users should know that the accessories provided with the Apex are not compatible with the factory DJI antennas. The Apex is designed to be used with after-market SMA antennas and MMCX-to-SMA pigtail wires.

One thing that makes the Apex stand out is that it’s the frame flown by Mr. Steele himself. Although the frame was originally designed to be used with the analog FPV gear that Steele prefers, it still fits the DJI system without compromise.

FRAMES FOR CADDX VISTA

Freestyle pilots often focus so much on durability that they forget how much weight affects the way a quadcopter flies. Lighter quads are more nimble, accelerate better, and fly for longer than heavier ones.

The Caddx Vista is smaller and lighter than the Air Unit. Any of the frames above could carry the Vista, but using a heavy frame with the Vista is sort of missing the point. The frames in this section make the most of the Vista’s smaller size and lighter weight.

APEX HD Frame

Kabab FPV (Bob Roogi) re-defined racing frames with the Floss, finding ways to shave weight without compromising durability (too much). The Glide is his entry into the freestyle arena.

The Glide can carry a 30mm or 20mm FC in front with Vista in the rear (but you might want to order the longer camera wire). Or you can put Vista in the middle and use a 20mm FC in the rear.

The link above takes you to FPVCycle.com, which is Kabab’s own store. By shopping at FPVCycle, you ensure 100% of the purchase price goes directly to the guy who designed this frame. Since the Glide ships from within the United States, shipping cost may make it prohibitive for pilots outside the U.S.

HALORC OSIRIS
PURCHASE AT HALORC

Purchase at HALORC

APEX HD Frame

The HaloRC Osiris can be built at under 100 grams for the frame alone. You might expect such a lightweight frame to be weak, but the Osiris is surprisingly durable. The big tradeoff with the Osiris is how tight the interior is. You can’t just pick any old hardware and expect it to fit. The preferred approach is to use a 20mm FC/ESC stack, however a 30mm stack can fit in the middle with Vista in the rear, as long as you’re willing to turn the ESC 90 degrees so the XT60 pokes out the side. The Osiris can be purchased with a huge variety of custom-made 3D printed accessories to suit any need.

Oh and by the way, HaloRC ships from the UK, so if you’re outside the United States, shipping will be much cheaper.

LUMENIER QAV-S JB EDITION
5″ FREESTYLE FRAME

Purchase at GetFPV

APEX HD Frame

When I started looking for the best lightweight freestyle frame, the QAV-S rose to the top of my list. Ryan Harrell, the designer, is a master of shaving away the unnecessary parts of a frame, leaving behind a strong, lightweight, organic-feeling design. I liked the QAV-S so much, I worked with Lumenier to develop a modified “JB signature edition” version of the frame.

The QAV-S features an innovative locking system for the arms that allows for one-screw arm changes without any screw-holes through the center of the arm (a common weak point). The original QAV-S has a split top-deck which is intended to make changing the GoPro mount easier, but I suspected it of being a weak point and swapped to a single-piece top deck. This allowed the removal of one standoff, which saved a little bit of weight. To further reduce weight, I shortened the standoff height from 28mm to 22mm. This still leaves enough room for a 2-high FC/ESC stack with a Vista in the rear. With some of the weight savings, I chose to thicken the bottom-front plate from 2mm to 2.5mm, which increases durability.

In any quadcopter frame design, there’s a tradeoff between durability and weight. The QAV-S is for a pilot who wants a nimble, lighter freestyle quad, even if it means replacing an arm a little more often. That being said, the design of the frame makes the most of what carbon is there, and I expect the QAV-S to be stronger than some poorly-designed frames weighing more.

FLIGHT CONTROLLERS

The DJI Air Unit has a few quirks that make it more complicated to connect to a traditional flight controller. It’s only rated for up to 4S voltage, so the pilots running on 6S must install a hefty voltage regulator to power the unit. And soldering up the wires that connect the Air Unit to the FC can be messy and tedious.

The flight controllers in this section are all designed to work with the DJI Air Unit. They have built-in voltage regulators that can power the Air Unit reliably so you don’t have to think about whether you’re using 4S or 6S batteries. Some of them even have a single plug that connects all of the wires directly to the Air Unit–no soldering required!

KAKUTE F7 HDV

Purchase at GetFPV – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at Pyro Drone – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at Catalyst Machineworks – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at Banggood – FC / FC&ESC

The Kakute F7 HDV has all the features you’d expect from a top-tier Betaflight flight controller. A fast F7 processor lets it run all the latest features at top speed. Six hardware-based UARTS for all the peripherals you could want. All UARTS support inversion so Frsky users don’t need to stress about “uninvert hack”. An SD card slot lets you store basically unlimited blackbox logs.

The Kakute F7 HDV has a built in plug that connects to the Air Unit with the included cable. No soldering is required! It’s got an 18-watt voltage regulator for the Air Unit (twice as much as the AU pulls, just to make sure voltage stays rock solid).

Betaflight is great for racing and freestyle. But If you intend to build a quad that holds position via GPS, or that has return-to-home capability, Betaflight can’t do that. The Kakute F7 HDV can run iNav firmware, which is focused on long-range and autonomous flight. In addition, the Kakute F7 HDV has built-in barometer, for precise altitude hold.

SUCCEX-D F7 TWING

Purchase at RaceDayQuads – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at GetFPV – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at NewBeeDrone – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at Pyro Drone – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at ReadyMadeRC – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at Banggood – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at Amazon – FC / FC&ESC

Like all the other FC’s on this list, the Succex-D TwinG is plug-and-play with the DJI Air Unit. It’s got a fast F7 processor like the Kakute F7, with the same advantages.

The Succex-D Twing has two unique features that make it stand out. Sensor Fusion means that it uses two gyro chips at the same time to filter out vibrations without any additional latency. It’s also the only FC on this list (maybe the only one on the market at this time!) to come with a USB-C connector. The same connector that comes on the DJI gear, so you only need one cable!

The iFlight ESC uses metal FETs for higher amp rating and more resistance to damage. The system is rated up to 6S nominally, but the components can actually take up to 8S voltage. This provides a little extra headroom to make sure your gear doesn’t fry itself when you go hard!

NEWBEEDRONE INFINITY30

Purchase at NewBeeDrone – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at RaceDayQuads – FC / FC&ESC
Purchase at Pyro Drone – FC / FC&ESC

The Newbeedrone Infinity30 is the jack-of-all-trades in this roundup. It has a plug that provides no-solder connection to a DJI Air Unit, but it still supports a traditional analog camera and video transmitter.

But if you’ve got glorious DJI HD, then why would you bother wasting space on the FC supporting analog video? Putting DJI on all your builds might be too expensive. The Infinity30 lets you use the same FC in all your builds, whether they use DJI or not.

This flexibility comes at a price. The Infinity30 has an F4 processor, not an F7. This means it can’t run the latest firmware as fast as possible. It also means the UARTS are less flexible and you won’t be able to use as many peripherals at the same time as you could if the board had an F7. The Infinity30 also doesn’t have blackbox logging capability (no SD card or even dataflash chip).

DIATONE MAMBA F405 HD MK2

Purchase at RaceDayQuads – FC / FC & ESC
Purchase at GetFPV – FC / FC & ESC
Purchase at NewBeeDrone – FC / FC & ESC
Purchase at Pyro Drone – FC / FC & ESC
Purchase at ReadyMadeRC – FC / FC & ESC
Purchase at Rotor Riot – FC / FC & ESC
Purchase at Banggood – FC / FC & ESC
Purchase at Amazon – FC / FC & ESC

This is the least expensive FC and ESC on this page. So you might expect it to be full of compromises and excuses. It’s not. The Diatone F405 has almost all the features you could ask for! A 3.3v, 5v and 9v regulator, including status LEDs for all major voltage rails to make it easier to know if you killed it in a crash. 6 UARTs to connect all the peripherals you could ask for. Two separate outputs for programmable LED strips. The ESC even includes a TVS diode to protect against voltage spikes. The Diatone is designed for use with the DJI system, but it also supports analog camera and vTX.

What’s missing? It hasn’t got an SD card for blackbox logging, although it does have 16 MB of flash memory (enough to hold data for 3 or 4 flights). This is an F4 processor, so it’s slightly slower than the F7 processor in more expensive FC. This doesn’t matter too much today, but it might in the future, as firmware outgrows and eventually leaves behind the F4.

If you have all the money in the world to spend, then you might get a little more from a higher-end stack. But if you’re on a budget or just want to get the most for your money, the Diatone Mamba F405 HD is the one you’ll get.

ACCESSORIES

If you want to get the longest possible range from your DJI FPV system, you need antennas like these. They focus the antenna beam in front of you, more than doubling your range in the direction they’re pointed. But be careful! The range in front of you is increased, but the range to the sides and behind you is decreased. If you need to go really far in one direction, the TrueRC X-Air is the one you’ll buy.

As good as these antennas are, the big disadvantage is that you can’t put your goggles into a case without taking the antennas off. This isn’t just an inconvenience. The constant screwing and unscrewing of the antennas wears out the SMA connectors in the goggles prematurely. Many people prefer a lower-profile antenna design, even if it doesn’t have quite as much range.

Can you use DJI goggles with analog quads? Yes. The DJI goggles have an analog AV input plug. And DJI has fixed any previous issues you might have heard of with latency and poor reception on the AV input. So if you want to use DJI goggles with analog quads, all you need is an analog FPV receiver module and some way to stick it to the goggles. The BDI Digiadapter is the best way we’ve found to do that.

Here’s why the BDI Digiadapter is amazing. It replaces the existing faceplate with two screws. No warranty-threatening surgery on the goggles is required. It is precision-molded so it fits perfectly. It holds the Fat Shark receiver module securely so there’s no worry about the module falling out, like with some homemade module bays. The BDI Digiadapter is just super high quality.

BETTER RANGE AND SLIM DESIGN
LUMENIER AXII HD / IFLIGHT CRYSTAL SKY

Purchase at RaceDayQuads – AXII HD / Crystal Sky
Purchase at GetFPV – AXII HD / Crystal Sky
Purchase at NewBeeDrone – AXII HD / Crystal Sky
Purchase at Pyro Drone – AXII HD / Crystal Sky
Purchase at Banggood – AXII HD / Crystal Sky
Purchase at Amazon – AXII HD / Crystal Sky

Want to increase the range of your DJI FPV system? These high-performance antennas increase range compared to the stock DJI antennas. Like with any patch antenna, there is a tradeoff: you get more range in front of you, with less range behind you. If you typically stand at the edge of your flying area, these antennas are for you. If you typically stand in the center of your flying area, stick with omni antennas.

The Axii HD patch antennas stick to the front of the goggles with 3M adhesive, so no permanent modification is necessary. The iFlight Crystal replaces the entire metal front plate (it’s only a 2-screw change though). The slim form factor of both of these antennas allows you to put them into a case or backpack without removing anything.

The Axii HD and iFlight Crystal combine two patch antennas with two omnis for a best-of-both-worlds solution. If you want the absolute maximum in penetration, you’ll want a higher-gain system, with four high-gain antennas, such as the VAS Cyclops. But be aware that you’ll significantly reduce coverage behind yourself if you go that direction.

Final note: most tests have shown that its best to attach the patch antenna to the two bottom SMA connectors and put the omni antennas on the two top SMA connectors. This is true regardless of if you have V1 or V2 DJI goggles.

The VAS Cyclops Mini perfectly balances size and performance, providing 10.25 dB of gain in a 120-degree “flight beam”, and mounting neatly to the front of the goggles with four stiff coaxial cables (easily removable if you need to). Compared to the Axii HD, the Cyclops Mini has about 2 dB more gain. In addition, the Cyclops puts a directional antenna on all four connectors instead of only two. So the Cyclops gives extreme range in front of the pilot with little coverage behind. The Axii HD is more of a general-purpose solution with somewhat better coverage in front, but still a little coverage behind.

The stock DJI antennas are actually really good. So why am I suggesting you replace them with the TrueRC Singularity Stubby? Because the stock antennas are long enough that some people don’t feel comfortable stuffing them into a case or backpack. The TrueRC Singularity Stubby are similar in performance to the stock DJI antennas, but smaller. That’s about it.

Like the stock antennas, these are omnidirectional. That means they’re going to work best when you stand in the middle of your flying area and fly all around yourself. If you tend to stand at the edge of your flying area and fly in front of yourself, then you will get better range from a patch combo like the Axii HD or iFlight Crystal.

One of the biggest complaints about the DJI FPV goggles is their fit. The factory foam has light-leak for most people. This aftermarket foam is the best we’ve found ad addressing this issue. It’s thicker than the factory foam, so it seals better, and it has a separate V-shaped piece for the nose, to help seal out light. Some people still have a little bit of light-leak around the nose, but most people agree this foam is hands-down better than what DJI ships with.

One caveat: if you normally wear your glasses underneath the DJI goggles, this foam’s thickness may mean the goggles don’t fit any more. This depends on the size of your glasses, of course.

The other big complaint about the DJI goggles is the head strap. Because it’s thin, it tends to focus the weight on small areas of the head. A thicker strap such as the ones linked here is a worthwhile upgrade. The big question will be whether you want a 1.5″ strap or a 2″ strap. Many people feel the 2″ strap is superior, but personally I don’t like how it rubs on my ears, and I like the 1.5″ straps.

All of the FatStraps linked above are 2″ thick. They come in a huge variety of prints! The Rotor Riot strap is 1.5″.

BEST CORRECTIVE LENS FOR DJI
RHO-LENS TADOR

Purchase at RHO Lens

If you’re tired of wearing glasses underneath the DJI FPV goggles, or if your glasses don’t fit, the RHO Lens Tador is what you need. RHO-Lens cuts the lens to your exact prescription, out of high quality optical coated glass, then mounts it in a plastic housing that attaches securely to your DJI goggles. These lenses are expensive when compared to cheap, generic, plastic alternatives. But the difference in image quality has to be seen to be believed.