October 17, 2014 6:40 PM   Subscribe

Forget the Star Wars angle, this is just fuckin' cool.
posted by charred husk at 6:44 PM on October 17, 2014

How can you race those in a forest and then use pod racing as your Star Wars example? Looks very fun.
posted by michaelh at 7:28 PM on October 17, 2014 [8 favorites]

That's amazing.
posted by flippant at 8:36 PM on October 17, 2014

The incredible thing is that the price of entry is down to something like $350 now - $100 for the quad, $100 for the FPV gear, $150 for batteries, radio and such.
posted by Kyol at 8:41 PM on October 17, 2014

Those radio controllers are $150 min for the 6-channel models. I'd be interested in seeing the FPV gear for $100.
posted by now i'm piste at 8:57 PM on October 17, 2014

I'd say it's more Speeder Bike Chase than pod race.
posted by fings at 9:08 PM on October 17, 2014 [4 favorites]

Where can you get a drone like that for $100?
posted by gottabefunky at 9:51 PM on October 17, 2014

I was trying to avoid Pepsi Blue, but I don't think I get any value out of this anyway so let's see:

Cheap DIY foam goggles for $30 and 200mW 5.8ghz video transmitter / camera / video receiver combo for $70. Add a $50 9 channel radio (which I don't have a lot of experience with, to be fair - I'm a Walkera guy) and a $30 transmitter module and you're halfway there.

A FPV-capable quad is $110, leaving $60 for batteries, a charger, a receiver and a flight control board. The RX is $10, a battery is another $10, leaving $40 for the flight controller and charger.

The flight controller is $23 which means a 3S charger is going to have to be cheap but let's see here.. Ah, $11 for a 2S-3S 1.2A charger, perfect for 1.3A batteries. That brings me in at $6 under budget. Ok, I'm cheating a bit since I'm using preferred member prices for Hobbyking gear, but if memory serves non-member pricing is only a little bit more.

It's all cheap trash, don't get me wrong, but it's all proper hobby grade gear, almost all of which is replaceable at the component level. Sure, you can spend $400 on a quad frame made out of ridiculously sexy carbon fiber, $160 on motors, $80 on the speed controllers and find yourself kissing a grand getting off the ground, but you don't have to.
posted by Kyol at 10:03 PM on October 17, 2014 [5 favorites]

And to be fair - that was quick and off the cuff, you will probably find yourself needing another $30 or so worth of hardware / wiring / aesthetic choices. And then there's the $70+ recording camera to capture action video that isn't grainy and low res from being broadcast by a transmitter with almost no power, the stack of props you'll eventually need, etc etc etc. And _shipping_ that monster order is another $70. But it has two or three huge items in it, you could probably optimize it into a couple of smaller orders that sum up to less than $419.
posted by Kyol at 10:28 PM on October 17, 2014

ready to fly fpv for $160. The drone is smaller and not as fast as those in the video, but it is full 6-axis control, and quite stable.
posted by lastobelus at 11:44 PM on October 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

EHRMAHGERD this is one hyperbolic headline that lives up to its self. My new hobby is teh drones racing!
posted by Mister_A at 7:20 AM on October 20, 2014

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