DIY Cheap VR FPV System for Drones, Planes, Cars

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Introduction: DIY Cheap VR FPV System for Drones, Planes, Cars

About: Hi, I'm Tamas (Thomas), a 19 years old Hungarian guy. My hobby started more than 10 years ago. I learn electronics, physics, programming, IoT and I'm sharing my projects with you, hope you like it!

In this Instructable I am going to tell you how I built a cheap FPV Virtual Reality system for my quadcopter with basic parts. My project started to became more and more difficult here so I thought it would be nice to make a simpler project too for the beginners. You just have to solder a little bit and you will have an amazing Virtual Reality FPV system.

When I wanted to buy a new VR FPV Reciever I saw the prices, and I thought to myself that I can built a cheaper version for personal uses. So I made one... It uses the RunCam Swift 2 camera onboard and transmits 5.8GHz video signals that can be recieved by a 5.8GHz reciever. With a $7 gadget we covert the analog video signal to digital and then connect this little device to our smartphone. Simple, cheap and high quality.

Here is how I did!

Step 1: Video

I made a small test video for you about the project.

Step 2: Gathering Parts

I bought the parts from different places. I tried to find the cheapest sites, here are they!

Tools:

  1. Soldering Iron
  2. Solder
  3. Wire Stripper

Parts:

This is all you need for this project. It is good to have some experience in soldering, but it is not necessary. I have put my setup on my quadcopter but this Instructable is not about the drone. You can apply anywhere in your RC car, helicopter or plane.

Step 3: Setting Up the RunCam

Why I choosed RunCam?

When I decided that I am upgrading my camera system on the quad I watched many other FPV cameras on the web, but none of them had the quality of the RunCam, neither in image quality nor in design. So I said I give it a try and it is very good to use the RunCam. Gives a sharp image has sensors inside, measures battery voltage without external OSD-s and displays this in real time.

First I fixed on its mount that comes with it then simply soldered to the video transmitter. Just three wires: Yellow to Yellow, Black to Black, and Red to Red. These are universal so you can't really miss it.

Step 4: Mounting on the Drone

I used two zip-ties to mount my camera on the front of the drone. I actually like to see the propellers when I do FPV so I set the angle this way. It is good because I know how close can I go to an object.

Step 5: Quick Test

Once I fixed my camera I tried it out. Worked fine, I am explaining in the next step how I did it.

Step 6: Building an FPV Glass

An advice: you can try with a cardboard VR glass, because it is hard to fit the parts nicely on this plastic one. I used 3mm double sided tape to fix all the components on the VR glass.

  1. First glue your receiver on the top so the antenna can easily see the signals.
  2. Next to it place the EasyCap Conveverter (this is a USB converter gadget for this case)
  3. Plug in your OTG cable and the analog signal cable.
  4. Place a small 7.4v battery on the left side to balance the other components.
  5. Power up your device, plug into your phone.
  6. Enjoy VR FPV

Step 7: Test Before Flight...

The RunCam Swift Manual has a lot details for you about calibrating. Once you set it up you can try it!

Step 8: Thank You for Watching!

I hope you will enjoy using this kind of FPV systema and thank you for watching!

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    2 Discussions

    What advice would you give to someone wishing to begin this hobby? Where should someone start? Any tips?

    How does the phone display the received video? Is it through an app?