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Thread: 5.8 or 2.4GHz for video?

  1. #1
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    5.8 or 2.4GHz for video?

    Hello guys,

    Everything is in the title...
    What are the differencies between 2.4 and 5.8GHz video signal? Which on is better? which one is easier to use? to mount?

    If i choose 2.4Ghz video, command must be done by UHF (transmitter added to remote control).
    And if i choose 5.8GHz video, command can be done by 2.8GHz signal but how? Remote control can send it in 2.4 but how is it received by aircraft?

    Thanks for your answers.

  2. #2
    Navigator Snoopy's Avatar
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    With 5.8 video you can use 2.4 control. What do you mean how? The RC Tx and Rx are 2.4, same as a regular RC plane. The only difference with an FPV craft is you put in a 5.8 video Tx and camera. That's the easiest and most modular way to enter FPV. Any 2.4 RC craft can have 5.8 video added to it. And you're correct that lowering the video frequency will require UHF control or filters.

    The higher the video frequency, the better the picture quality but there is an inverse correlation with penetration ability for the signal. You must have a clear line of sight between your antennas for 5.8. If you want to fly behind objects you need 2.4 or 1.3 video at a cost of picture quality but don't get hung up on that. The picture is fine.

  3. #3
    The goggles do nothing! chicken sashimi's Avatar
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    I've had 5.8 pilots look through my goggles at my video feed and remark at how much better my image quality is than theirs and i fly on 2.4 video. There are so many factors that affect image quality.. like snoopy says.. don't get hung up on the IQ aspects of a frequency. instead choose something that will serve your aircraft and flying style.

  4. #4
    Kiwi in Germany whakahere's Avatar
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    each has it's advantages and disadvantages.

    With 5.8ghz you more often can get a signal without interference. (ground noise) - things putting out on the same band as you transmitter/receiver. They are pretty easy to set up and it means you can use 2.4ghz radios. You can use UHF or older radio's putting out 72mhz or 35mhz depending where you live. The antennas are small so they are easy to pack for transport. You can buy goggles with the receiver making it dead easy to start out. The disadvantages are that antenna placement becomes important. The signal can get blocked by the frame (if copter), batteries, cameras ... Generally the antenna has to always be in LOS for a clear picture. You can go behind objects but it does flicker. Many people still use it to tree bash but they are also mindful of it's limitations. 5.8ghz has the shortest of range out of all frequencies. Antennas become al-important as well. You really need circular polarized antennas. So that is an extra cost.

    With 2.4ghz you can go further distances on the stock antennas. While circular polarized antennas are nice to have they aren't always a must. The antennas are not too big but you can't head mount directional antennas unlike in 5.8ghz. With a good setup you can tree bash pretty easy. I've flown 5.8ghz but I like 2.4ghz the most. In saying that there are down sides. Flying around people with 2.4ghz radios or in a heavy wifi area can kill your signal. I flew around my local park on 2414mhz, which is a wifi band. It cut my signal on my quad to a few hundred meters. Using the lowest and highest band on 2.4ghz, I can generally get good picture.
    Whaka's Tinkerings blog --> http://fpvlab.com/forums/showthread.php?36623-Whaka-s-Tinkering&p=631753#post631753
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    Range record on 5.8ghz 200mw 24km --> http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1441664

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  5. #5
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    thanks so much guys for your answer, explains a lot

    So if wanna have fpv experience in about 5km range behind trees and mountains, i need 2.4?

    when i spoke about control receiver for 2.4, i mean : does RX for 5.8 and 2.4 is the same material? is it only the antenna different? how do i set it up for 2.4? Taking exemple on those sold on TBS website.

  6. #6
    Navigator Snoopy's Avatar
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    No, each frequency requires completely different video hardware. If you buy a 5.8 VRx and VTx set, all it will ever be is 5.8. You can change antennas but that only changes link quality, not frequency. If you want to later switch to 2.4 video you need a whole new package. But I wouldn't sweat that either. You can always use your old 5.8 set as a wireless goggle relay or for another plane for friends or whatever.

    There are many factors which determine how much distance you'll get from a given frequency. The platform you're flying, your location and it's ground noise, atmospheric conditions etc...but that being said 5km on 5.8 is pushing it. And no way would you do that on 2.4 control. You'd at least need a directional VRx antenna and UHF control for a decent shot. And if you're going UHF at this point, why bother attempting that distance with 5.8. You can see how one thing turns into another with this stuff.

    You're new, so I can assure you 5.8 will give you all the distance you need for a good long while. Though I can't speak to how quickly you'd outgrow 2.4 control because I started with UHF.

    If you go 5.8, just make sure you also buy circular polarized antennas and not use the stock linear whips. That should be factored into your shopping budget. Multipathing on 5.8 is a major issue for stock whips and the CP will eliminate that giving you the most bang for your 5.8 buck.
    Last edited by Snoopy; 26th November 2013 at 06:23 PM.

  7. #7
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    There is final question.
    On TBS website, i can see Video transmitter and video receiver for 5.8 and 2.4. Ok for video.
    I can also see UHF control (433Mhz), but i dont find 2.4 control? where is the 2.4 receiver for control (same frequence than graupner)?

  8. #8
    Navigator Snoopy's Avatar
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    You won't find 2.4 control on FPV sites as it's pretty much a basic LOS freq. Virtually any time you see a regular RC vehicle, whether its a heli, plane or car from a hobby shop or a mall, its fitted with 2.4 already. A basic RTF package will include a 2.4 Rx and a cheap 2.4 Tx that work together. As people progress in the RC hobby, they will upgrade the Tx to a computerized model with more channels and options, but its still a 2.4 radio with the same range.

    Also, not just any 2.4 Tx and Rx will work together. These things are proprietary. ie, if you buy a Blade or Horizon Hobby plane or heli it will use the Spektrum brand of 2.4 like a Spektrum Dx6i Tx. That means you must use a Spektrum 2.4 Rx. You can always swap out the Rx and Tx though, just like swapping out engines in a car but you are committed to that brand while it's in your vehicle. You tipically become a customer of a 2.4 brand based on what you want to fly. I started with Blade products so I subsequently became a Spektrum user. I didn't specifically go out there and pick Spektrum.

    That's true for UHF as well. EZ, Dragon, OpenLRS, etc use their own Tx and Rx. No mixing of brands whether it's 2.4 or 433.

    Lastly, there are RC radios that are module based like the Turnigy 9XR. These are open source radios which have an open slot in the back and are not married to any one frequency or brand. You can buy a module made for that radio based on which specific proprietary brand you want to fly. These radios are great because you can use a 2.4 module, then when ready to go UHF, you unplug the module and wire in the UHF Tx. Same radio, different guts.

    It's a lot to get your head around if you don't even have basic RC knowledge. You'll go mad trying to plan 4-steps ahead on paper with no hands-on experience. Trust me. These are good questions but many of them will answer themselves once you get a basic starter plane package. I would start with an ARF trainer package which includes everything but Tx and Rx. Then grab a module radio and 2.4 Tx module and matching 2.4 Rx.
    Last edited by Snoopy; 26th November 2013 at 08:45 PM.

  9. #9
    Advanced Beginner Oliver Miami's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emmanuel View Post
    Hello guys,

    Everything is in the title...
    What are the differencies between 2.4 and 5.8GHz video signal? Which on is better? which one is easier to use? to mount?

    If i choose 2.4Ghz video, command must be done by UHF (transmitter added to remote control).
    And if i choose 5.8GHz video, command can be done by 2.8GHz signal but how? Remote control can send it in 2.4 but how is it received by aircraft?

    Thanks for your answers.
    Hi Emmanuel, the other guys answered all your questions already but for your info I made a newbie guide and it's (mostly) all explained in there with photo and all that.
    http://fpvlab.com/forums/showthread....-Rookie-Manual

    Good luck

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emmanuel View Post
    thanks so much guys for your answer, explains a lot

    So if wanna have fpv experience in about 5km range behind trees and mountains, i need 2.4?
    Nope, 2.4GHz is still pretty much line of sight so if you go behind a mountain with 2.4GHz video -- it will disappear, just like 5.8GHz video.

    2.4GHz will perform somewhat better than 5.8GHz behind objects at close range but remember that everyone is saying how 2.4GHz RC systems are LOS -- so you have to remember that 2.4GHz video has pretty much the same limitation.

    Not much point in having UHF RC that will slice through ground clutter if your video signal wont.

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