Syma x5c-1 Removing Stabilization?

Discussion in 'RTF Modification & Repair' started by Don Thomas Boyle, Jan 27, 2017.

  1. Firstly, sorry about the double post, the first one was accidentally placed in experimental

    I've not come across a single person anywhere asking to remove such features - only how to fix them.

    Question: I want to know if there is any way to remove the Gyro Stabilization (or whatever is stabilizing this drone) from my Syma X5C-1?

    Reason: It is holding me back from performing trick maneuvers do to the stabilization.

    Goal: Turning a cheap and inexpensive toy into a trick / race drone without stabilization to perform tricks like power loops... basically - a really slow racer /trick drone 0.0

    Thanks for reading through my question and thanks for your time!
    chupo_cro likes this.
  2. Jackson

    Jackson USA member at large

  3. Maybe you can help me understand then what makes race quads special over toy drones in this regard? Looks like they all have gyro's too. Is it just the power of the motors?
  4. Birdy

    Birdy Well-Known Member

    Seems like the wrong approach.

    The Syma is what it is. Why not just buy one of the many sportier, faster, trickier, pick your own terms quads that are out there?
  5. GJH105775

    GJH105775 Avid Linux User, and USAF 1C6 Moderator

    Well you could remove the auto level in the firmware and reflash it or just upgrade to a small flight controller for brushed mini quads. I'd suggest the second option, however I'd do it with spmething smaller with shorter arms so that it takes less power to flip it. Maybe without gears, though it would not be as capable as a better quad meant more for Acro it would allow you to get there.
  6. Thanks for your response!! I'll try the firmware first, then the small flight controller. It has plenty power to flip :) - even if they will be much larger in radius than a powerful quad :)
  7. chupo_cro

    chupo_cro Member

    I'd like to do the same but unfortunately I couldn't find any open source firmware for X5C boards so I decided I will try to make one (AVR based) from scratch but that will going to take some time. In the meantime I ordered Eachine H8 that could be flashed with open source firmware (an ARM programmer is only $2) to learn flying in acro mode or to change the rates for position mode. Maybe X5C's PCB could even be replaced by H8's flashed PCB. H8 is only $10 and even suitable for adding FPV camera.
  8. Jackson

    Jackson USA member at large

    There is no Syma FW available, nor is there any way to connect to the main board.
  9. chupo_cro

    chupo_cro Member

    Although there aren't ISP pads on the Syma's PCB (as there are on e.g. Eachine H8's PCB), it would be rather trivial to solder tiny wires directly to the microcontroller's pins to flash some alternative firmware - if one existed. Another way would be to program a brand new NuMico Mini51 and to physically replace the old one (by using hot air gun) with a new µC. The 'only' problem is noone (still) didn't take time to reverse engineer the PCB and to write a firmware - which is really surprising :-/
  10. Rick M

    Rick M Absent-minded professor

    Really? You think so?
  11. Jackson

    Jackson USA member at large

    Not really. :)
  12. chupo_cro

    chupo_cro Member

    I am surprised because community spent many hours reverse engineering far less popular devices than Syma X series of quadcopters. Absence of in circuit programming contacts on PCB, locked microcontroller and even encryption circuitry didn't stop people from developing alternative firmwares for various devices - so when I searched for an alternative fimware for Syma X5 I was really surprised when I saw there weren't such projects. All of the ICs used with Syma board (Nuvoton Mini ARM, MPU 60x0 6 axis gyro + accelerometer and Beken's 24xx clones of NRF24L01+ transceiver) are well documented or already reverse engineered so everything is ready for porting some open source quadcopter firmware. I am not sure about other open source quadcopter firmwares but I examined source code of h8mini-dual firmware - it is well organized and is one of the candidats for porting to Syma hardware.
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2017
  13. RENOV8R

    RENOV8R Well-Known Member

    I think the answer is that no one really wants to put in the time and effort of updating the firmware to enhance the flight characteristics of a quadcopter that cost $0.45 to mass produce in a Chinese factory. They are what they are
  14. chupo_cro

    chupo_cro Member

    Eachine H8 mini costs $10 but people still developed alternative firmwares. I see the main advantage of flashing the quadcopter with alternative firmware being able to practice flying in acro mode without risk to crash an expensive drone.
  15. chupo_cro

    chupo_cro Member

    Or maybe there is? Today I received a new Syma X5(C) PCB v6 and there are CLOCK, DATA and RESET pads at the bottom of PCB.

    I ordered a new PCB because I couldn't activate the camera, here is more details.

    Here are the pictures of PCB v6:

    01_top.jpg 02_bottom.jpg 03_top.jpg 04_bottom.jpg
  16. Jeff Neese

    Jeff Neese Well-Known Member

    If your goal is to have an inexpensive toy-grade quad to practice acro, just buy a Dromida Ominus or a Traxxas Alias. There's also the Blade 180 QX (my favorite) which is discontinued but can be found on eBay for around $50, or the new Blade Zeyrok. I'm sure I'm forgetting a few, but there are toy-grade acro flyers out there. The Ominus can be purchased for around $40.
  17. chupo_cro

    chupo_cro Member

    Thank you very much for the info. I ordered one Eachine H8, AKK S2 camera with transmitter and RC832 Plus receiver to try both acro firmware and short range FPV flying but I will sure buy more quadcopters and I will certainly check the ones you mentioned. Eventually I will try to make my own flight control board.

    I would however really like to get the camera working with Syma X5 at the moment but I have no idea why the remote with a blue LED can not activate the camera SIGNAL output of v6 PCBs. I got blue LED remote and the quadcopter with v6 board as a set but the camera SIGNAL never gets LOW. I bought another v6 board but still the same. I confirmed (using µC and NRF24L01+) the transmitter does send 'photo' and 'camera on/off' commands and I saw others have the same problem with PVB v6 and the transmitter with a blue LED - seems as a BUG in v6 firmware :-/
  18. Jeff Neese

    Jeff Neese Well-Known Member

    I fly my X5C-1 with an X8C transmitter and it controlled the camera just fine. You can buy an X8C transmitter for under $20 and you get much better range than the stock transmitter. I say "controlled the camera" in the past tense because that was just when I first got it. I've removed that crappy camera and just use the X5C-1 as a fun little park flyer now. It will never be a serious speed demon, but there's a noticeable difference when you remove the camera and prop guards.
  19. chupo_cro

    chupo_cro Member

    If I understand correctly you are getting much better range when using X8C's transmitter instead of the original one. However, I am already getting exceptional range with the transmitter I got with the drone - the range is more than 275 m (more than 900 ft). That is the range I am getting without any modifications, I didn't change the length or the orientation of the antennas. The transmitter I got is the one with a blue LED and not with the green one and there is Beken 2461 transceiver inside. I have here written more details about the transmitter. If you are not getting such a range with your X5C's tranmitter then I believe it is the one with a green LED but that would imply the board inside your X5C is not v6. I still can not find anyone who has control board v6 and a transmitter with a blue LED to confirm camera cannot be activated using that combination.

    As a temporary workaround I will have to disconnect the yellow wire from the camera connector and solder a momentary push button between the yellow and the black wire to be able to start the camera manually before taking off. Fortunately the yellow wire signal is already pulled high inside the camera so there is no need for additional 3 V step down converter and a pull up resistor. That way I won't be able taking pictures but at least I will be able to record a video.

    And I will try to send commands to the quadcopter via some other Syma protocols using nrf24_multipro library. I already did the opposite - I can receive the commands sent from the Syma's remote and display the data in terminal window. That way I can see the remote is sending camera control commands meaning the problem is with the flight control board. Since I have two v6 boards and they both have the same problem I think the problem is with the firmware.

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