Upgrade to 32-bit or not to upgrade?
  • A couple of questions regarding board versions.

    I own a DIY 3-axis brushless gimbal, for flight with drone and also for handheld, with an 8-bit 1.0 AlexMos board, which works fairly good if a decent tuning is achieved (manually, so the process is very slow and complex...).

    But I know the performance can be improved. As I'm a perfectionist, I want to get the best results possible.

    So I was wondering if upgrading to a 32-bit SimpleBGC board could mean some real and useful benefits for me, besides Autotune, that could justify all the extra money and time to reinstall and reconfigure everything.

    If yes, would it be much difficult to reconnect all the motors and stuff to the new board?

    Thanks a lot.
  • 32 bit rings many improvements over 8bit. Much improved RC control, filtering, second IMU, temperature calibration, possibility to use encoders.

    But 8 bit is not bad and they both use the same IMU. With 32 bit board you should get better performance, but there is no guarantees of that. it much depends of your gimbal and use.

    Should not be too difficult to connect the 32 bit board, but I highly recommend not using the 8bit board IMU, but getting a new one(s) that are designed for the 32 bot board you will get.
  • I support this.

    I used my 8bit card for a long time due to it just working, given i spent some time with it.
    But after changing to 32bit it just made the workflow better.
    I can now change lenses and have it upp and running way quicker= money in the walllet
    I can even change payloads and spend close to no time, the new temperature calibration, althought i havent looked to deep into it also will save you time (and frustration) in the end.
    And then there is the possibiblty for encoder. Belive me, garug will probobly attest to this, but encoders realy is the future. No daubt about it.

    Its an un needed cost i will agree since you already have a working card.
    But if you ask me, just bite your teeth togheter and shell out for a new 32bit card.
    Given you know how to work with the 8bit i will almost guarantee you will be happy.
  • I was using 'encoder' with Basecam already before it was available http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2243241 :-)

    Yep, encoders are great, but on my GoPro gimbal is still use just yaw encoder, because of the simplicity and it works good enough.

    But I doubt any gimbal without encoders could do this :-)

  • I said it just as a werry good reason to get a 32b board :)
    To atleast have the possibility when you want to.

    that atv video is preaty sick, i have strapped a camera to my atv once.
    I know this is good :P
  • OK, thanks a lot for the answers and the advice.

    I'm still fixing and improving the gimbal design right now and I keep trying to achieve the perfect tuning.

    I may purchase 32-bit if I'm not happy with the end result since it's not so expensive as it seems.

    Or maybe I'll wait for 64-bit (since my 8-bit got obsolete just months after I bought it!...) with encoders by default or something (what exactly are the encoders for gimbals, by the way?).

    Best regards.
  • Here is more information about encoders http://www.basecamelectronics.com/encoders/

    They provide many advantage as listed on the link, basically what they are is angular sensor on each axis, so that the controller nows all the time exactly the position of each axis.
  • Thank you very much, Garug, as always.

    I was wondering another question: does Autotune give good results usually, or does it tend to require some manual tuning anyway (given everything is OK and well balanced)? Does Autotune by itself make worth upgrading to 32-bit?

    I'm getting really tired already about manual PID tuning, but I'm not so sure if SimpleBGC Autotune is that good (yet). Without a lens with stabilizer, there's some little shaking/vibration when walking or flying (using the GH4). I wonder if it's normal for brushless gimbals or something is wrong (maybe I'll try lowering D... again?).

    Do you guys use lenses with stabilizer, or your gimbals give almost-perfect stability by themselves? Do you recommend using always a lens with stabilizer when using brushless gimbals?

    Sorry for so many questions, and thanks a lot again.
  • I have not fully manually tuned for long time. I tune one axis at the time with autotune. On my experience, if the gimbal is good, the autotune works well. But also on my experience, if the gimbal is good, manual tuning is easy.

    During the time I have been developing gimbals, if the gimbal did not tune well, I always looked to the gimbal construction and improved it. Really minor looking things can make a big difference.

    The filtering does not make tuning easier, but it provides vibration free result on every gimbal position. Very useful, but also for this there often is a mechanical solution. I do not need much filtering on my current gimbals. Maybe the firmware has improved too.