Phantom 4 Pro v2.0 Range is awful

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#1
I'm on day two of owning a new P4P v2.0 and am about to return it due to the horrible range I am getting out of it. The first day I could barely get it off the ground in my backyard (a 50ftx50ft grass area) because the signal seemed to be dropping out so bad. I live in a suburb of Phoenix so it is not the most ideal area but this is ridiculous! Throttle up and it would climb a foot or so then sputter/freeze, up a foot then freeze etc...yaw left or right, no response with the stick held in place then a small bump in the direction I commanded then stop, move a little then stop...same with pitch and roll. I varied my distance from remote to drone between 5ft and 30ft with no change whatsoever. Video transmission was just as bad. Strong interference was showing under signal quality.

After my first flight I see the DJI Go 4 app found a new firmware version so I update to V01.00.1500. I now have DJI Go 4 version 4.2.21 (5th gen Ipad--2017 model), and version 01.00.1500 showing on both the controller and Phantom. Second flight was worse than the first, I did an auto take-off and lost all control of my Phantom as it hovered 30ft above me. As I wondered around my yard trying to figure out how to get it back on the ground without incident it began to intermittently respond to stick commands. From 30ft up it took half the battery charge to bring it down and land because it would only come down a foot at a time then stop because the signal kept cutting out.

By now I'm scared to death to fly this thing even though I have been an r/c modeler with 25+ years experience flying planes, helicopters, and fpv racers. I call it a day and decide to research range problems other people might be having that could help my situation. I find what I think is the golden ticket--relinking the remote with the Phantom. I do this at home and everything seems to work now. Signal quality shows good. Not wanting to tempt faith, I go to the park behind my house where I fly previously said planes/helis/drones and do another relink. Take-off manually and it is responding correctly to all inputs--sweet! I take it out and up in 25ft increments. Get to 291ft up and 553ft away (yes FEET, not meters) and I'm thinking all is well. I start doing some pictures and video then pfffffffffttttt!! Unresponsive! Uh Oh! Same thing happens again and it takes most of the battery to work it back and down a foot at a time until it's on the ground 5ft in front of me still experiencing severe "interference". So bad so that it takes more than a minute before I can power the darn thing off with left stick full down. P.S. In order to isolate the problem my cell phone and the Ipad I was using DJI Go on where both in airplane mode for the whole flight.

At all times VLOS was kept, transmitter antennas were positioned to be perpendicular to direction of travel...Is this a common occurrence when flying in an urban environment with DJI equipment? I think not but I contacted DJI support earlier today and they gave me the boiler plate "interference can affect range" statement. I've never run into such a finicky signal before with my other 2.4 ghz radios and can't see how this is normal.

Can those versed in urban flight ops with a P4P and/or P4P V2 please comment on what they have seen for range? And if you needed to change any settings to achieve that range?

Thanks for reading!

D
 
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#2
You need to try a different area and see if that changes things. It's possible there is sufficient RF interference in your area to cause problems, as strange as it may seem.
Probably not, but I'd eliminate that possibility first.
Welcome to the forum!
 
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#3
On my first flight with the P4P 2.0 I went out to around 3000 feet with no loss of signal. I could have gone farther but didn’t need to.

Sounds like yours might have an issue. Maybe see about an exchange?
 
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#5
Thanks for the comments...I went out to the middle of nowhere this morning and didn't have any issues whatsoever with control or video signal interference and was able to travel plenty of distance. Came back home and fired up the Phantom in the living room (props were off) and it seemed to establish a link much quicker and no longer has a warning about interference. Also of note, I have been playing with the custom video transmission frequency and prior to today I was not able to adjust the frequency range..It started working at my remote site and when I came home it works here as well.

It's too hot to fly midday so I'm planning to do a little test run tonight to see if reception has improved. Hopefully the problem has fixed itself!
 
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#6
My one can manage 3000' in the UK before complete video signal loss over open fields (picture goes b&w then auto rth) but we can't fly over built up areas and only 2.4Ghz mode is available. I was expecting better performance and thought this ocusync was supposed to be better, I may as well just have bought the non V2 version and saved some money.
 
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#7
Thanks for the comments...I went out to the middle of nowhere this morning and didn't have any issues whatsoever with control or video signal interference and was able to travel plenty of distance. Came back home and fired up the Phantom in the living room (props were off) and it seemed to establish a link much quicker and no longer has a warning about interference. Also of note, I have been playing with the custom video transmission frequency and prior to today I was not able to adjust the frequency range..It started working at my remote site and when I came home it works here as well.

It's too hot to fly midday so I'm planning to do a little test run tonight to see if reception has improved. Hopefully the problem has fixed itself!
Even though you seem to be doing better, try flying on 5.8Ghz AUTO. That band works much better for me, over 4mi range, but that's with P4P V1.
 
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#8
I didn't get a flight in last night but did one this morning...Everything worked great until about 7 minutes into the flight when I virtually lost all control again. This was also the case the previous times I have flown around my house.

I decided to upload my data to airdata.com to see if I could find any issues with it and it is just bizarre how the signal drops out without any warning...Antennas were pointed straight up and down and no changes where made until reception started breaking up. At that point I tried every angle possible in an attempt to regain control but the best antenna position seemed to be the one I started with. Have a look at these screenshots from airdata. First two are from this mornings flight, third and forth from a few days prior.
Screen Shot 2018-06-29 at 9.52.09 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-06-29 at 9.56.43 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-06-29 at 10.28.01 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-06-29 at 10.28.49 AM.png


I'm starting to think this is a heat related problem. Yesterday I got up early enough that the max temperature of any flight was in the low 80's...Prior to that it has been around 95f when I have taken flight and this morning it was about 92. Still well within claimed operating parameters but it seems to be my best explanation of the issue. Has anyone else had heat related issues with a P4P v2.0? I'm starting to think this one is a dud.
 
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#10
I didn't get a flight in last night but did one this morning...Everything worked great until about 7 minutes into the flight when I virtually lost all control again. This was also the case the previous times I have flown around my house.

I decided to upload my data to airdata.com to see if I could find any issues with it and it is just bizarre how the signal drops out without any warning...Antennas were pointed straight up and down and no changes where made until reception started breaking up. At that point I tried every angle possible in an attempt to regain control but the best antenna position seemed to be the one I started with. Have a look at these screenshots from airdata. First two are from this mornings flight, third and forth from a few days prior.

I'm starting to think this is a heat related problem. Yesterday I got up early enough that the max temperature of any flight was in the low 80's...Prior to that it has been around 95f when I have taken flight and this morning it was about 92. Still well within claimed operating parameters but it seems to be my best explanation of the issue. Has anyone else had heat related issues with a P4P v2.0? I'm starting to think this one is a dud.
I agree with BQ, if this drone exhibits the same behavior in several flight locations, I would quickly return it to the place you bought if they have an exchange policy and get another drone. Where did you buy it? You need to quickly test in other areas this weekend to confirm. That's certainly not acceptable performance. You should get a 3mi range easy with a clear LOS connection on 5.8Ghz AUTO.

Were you flying 5.8Ghz when this happened?
 
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#11
Something is just not right here, perhaps there is major interference in your area.
If there was major interference wouldn't it be present throughout the flight though? It seems rather coincidental that the signal strength is good for the first half of each flight then drops dramatically. It also remains poor even once the Phantom is just a few feet away. I just flew another flight with the outside air temp at 96 and all was good until 4 minutes in and the same issue occurred. I checked another flight log from a few days ago that was flown at 102f and the signal strength drops drastically at around 2 1/2 minutes and never gets better.

I guess I'll be getting up extra early tomorrow morning to see if I run into any issues flying around my neighborhood with the same cooler temps that I had yesterday.
 
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#12
I agree with BQ, if this drone exhibits the same behavior in several flight locations, I would quickly return it to the place you bought if they have an exchange policy and get another drone. Where did you buy it? You need to quickly test in other areas this weekend to confirm. That's certainly not acceptable performance. You should get a 3mi range easy with a clear LOS connection on 5.8Ghz AUTO.

Were you flying 5.8Ghz when this happened?
It was bought directly from DJI. I will test in a few other locations as well as at different outside temperatures to see if I can narrow down the problem any further.

I have used 5.8ghz in auto without any change. Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't this only for the video portion of the feed? Remote control to drone is always broadcast on 2.4ghz right? Video always goes out but so does my control of the drone...
 
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#14
Send it back ASAP, ask for a different one or a refund
It will be going back for sure at this point. I went to two other locations, both of which I know many people fly at and had the same issue with the signal working fine until 5-7 minutes into the flight. Then the thing is completely uncontrollable and the video feed drops out.

This is the latest signal report--everything after the 5:30 mark was very twitchy and if in forward flight the drone was glitching in and out of its braking mode like the stick was being released even though the same input was being held.

Screen Shot 2018-06-29 at 3.14.32 PM.png
 
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#15
It will be going back for sure at this point. I went to two other locations, both of which I know many people fly at and had the same issue with the signal working fine until 5-7 minutes into the flight. Then the thing is completely uncontrollable and the video feed drops out.

This is the latest signal report--everything after the 5:30 mark was very twitchy and if in forward flight the drone was glitching in and out of its braking mode like the stick was being released even though the same input was being held.

View attachment 100613
Don't agree on having it repaired ,insist on a brand new one or simply ask for a full refund, it should work right out the box ...
 
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#16
Today I sorta flew a range test with my P4P 2.0. I got about 5,290' before RTH kicked in. Drone was at 355' above me. Later I came home and used one of my geek tools to calculate where the theoretical limits should be based on where I was, where the drone was in space and what terrain was between me and the drone.

Interesting thing is that I lost signal almost exactly where the calculator said I would:

range test.png


The yellow line is the theoretical limit of the signal. The magenta X is where I launched and the red X is where I lost signal and RTH kicked in. Amazing!

PS... the red clouds are ground areas visible by someone 6' tall standing where I launched.
 
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#18
I didn't get a flight in last night but did one this morning...Everything worked great until about 7 minutes into the flight when I virtually lost all control again. This was also the case the previous times I have flown around my house.

I'm starting to think this is a heat related problem. Yesterday I got up early enough that the max temperature of any flight was in the low 80's...Prior to that it has been around 95f when I have taken flight and this morning it was about 92. Still well within claimed operating parameters but it seems to be my best explanation of the issue. Has anyone else had heat related issues with a P4P v2.0? I'm starting to think this one is a dud.
I live in North Texas, where, for the past few weeks, the temps have been consistently at the 100 degrees mark with heat indexes of 103-106. Ive never had a heat issue on the P4P, MPP, or MA.

My neighbor just bought a P4Pv2, and we hooked up my RE goggles for a test flight. Went out 800 feet and disconnected from goggles and phone. Keep in mind this is a fairly rural area and ive taken the V1 out 3000ft plus in the same place. I hooked the USB cable up to the V1 and the goggles and went out 3000ft with no disconnect, stutter, or noise in the video. The video in the goggles doesnt appear to have any better of a resolution, either.

In my opinion, the problem with the V2 is everyone is expecting an “upgrade”, but really they should expect “different”. Occusync and Lightbridge are nothing in common.
 
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#20
I live in North Texas, where, for the past few weeks, the temps have been consistently at the 100 degrees mark with heat indexes of 103-106. Ive never had a heat issue on the P4P, MPP, or MA.

My neighbor just bought a P4Pv2, and we hooked up my RE goggles for a test flight. Went out 800 feet and disconnected from goggles and phone. Keep in mind this is a fairly rural area and ive taken the V1 out 3000ft plus in the same place. I hooked the USB cable up to the V1 and the goggles and went out 3000ft with no disconnect, stutter, or noise in the video. The video in the goggles doesnt appear to have any better of a resolution, either.

In my opinion, the problem with the V2 is everyone is expecting an “upgrade”, but really they should expect “different”. Occusync and Lightbridge are nothing in common.
Many people are reporting short range when using the RE goggles and the P4P 2.0 (I think most that have tried distance with that combo have). I think this must be some sort of bug that must get worked out.

Many would argue that Occusync is an upgrade to Lightbridge but I have no idea since I don't have and have never had a Lightbridge drone. I do have a MA and Occusync blows it away.
I imagine if they get the kinks worked out of the goggles that being able to use 2 of them wirelessly would be an advantage to some (if they get that range issue fixed). Being able to use 2 controllers may be a benefit to some as well.

Not sure there was to be a resolution improvement. I have not seen that but I have seen claims that latency was to be reduced. The 1080P tablet view on the 2.0 is a major upgrade that I love over 720P.
 

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