Introduction: Tarot T-3D 3-axis Drone Gimbal for GoPro: Options to Build & Fit (+ Flight Tests)
The gimbal comes ready built but it's not quite 'plug & play' hence this 'Tarot T4-3D 3-axis gimbal: Build, Review, Test and Comparison with Tarot T-2D gimbal'.
You get a cable to attach the gimbal to the flight controller and a cable loom to attach to your Rx and AV Out as well as an adapter to connect to your PC via a micro USB. Just solder a power connector of choice and off you go?
The distance between the spacers used on the T-2D is 45mm. On the T4-3D (T-3D) the distance is 70mm. Hence a new mount may be required... The video shows our solution for an alternative mount build.
The T4-3D (T-3D) is delivered with a mount that is a direct fit for the Tarot 650 quadcopter & 680 hexacopter (or similar). Tarot have designed the anti-vibration mount so that it works on compressing the rubber balls which is a proven setup with the T-2D gimbal in reducing/eliminating jello.
The Roll motor is physically limited to + or - 45 degrees. The Pitch motor is physically limited to + 26 & -114 degrees from front-level. The Yaw motor is physically limited to ~ + or - 170 degrees.
The mini USB on the camera mount of the gimbal takes video out and also charges your GoPro. The instructions come in Chinese and English. Gimbal + wires = 200g, add a standard GoPro 3 = 275g. The 3 wire servo plug allows you to switch between FPV or 'Pan Follow' mode and can be used as an SBUS connection (not tested). The single yellow lead servo plug allows you to alter the camera angle via the RC receiver.
The GoPro 3 does not physically balance when fitted in the gimbal, however the slightly heavier GoPro 4 sits level. This may suggest the need for a bit of counter-balance for a GoPro3 perhaps to avoid straining the Roll motor? That said, with the power attached the GoPro 3 does level without any apparent strain (noise) from the Roll motor.
The software.... You can download the software from the Tarot website, however it is a '.rar' file so you will need an appropriate application to unzip it... ...alternatively you can go to the www.helipal.com website where they have been kind enough to provide links to zipped files which unzip in Windows. First install the appropriate drivers... Then install the application... The 'T4-3D Assistant' software is not very 'dynamic' like some gimbal interfaces.
For the flight tests and comparisons then both gimbals were fitted to a Sky-Hero 450 Little Spyder Custom which can fly with 4S-6S Lipo batteries for a significantly extended flight time compared to the standard 3S setup.
Early indications suggest that the Tarot T4-3D 3-axis gimbal may well set a new benchmark in terms of quality and performance for budget 3-axis GoPro gimbals for drones. The price-point competes with many of the capable 2-axis GoPro gimbals on the market and is significantly less than most 3-axis gimbals.