santamonica811

getting Holy Stone camera to work

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I am brand new (almost) to drone flying.  I'm a serious photographer, so my aim is to get the Mavic once I have some experience with more basic (cough: cheaper) drones.  For this, I got the Holy Stone HS 120, which was inexpensive, but with a video/still camera and first-person view (FPV) capacity.

 

1.  First step: Got the kit via Amazon, and set it up.  Drone flies just fine.  But when I take a photo or video with the remote control, the control makes the "sound" of a photo being taken, and makes the proper sound (repeated beeping) that a video is being taken.  But when I remove the memory card and try to download to my desktop, there is never any file.  I have tried using two different SD cards--both of which have been used perfectly with a different drone.  So, I know for sure that the cards are not the issue.  For some reason, the camera/camera function was not working.

The controller *does* successfully adjust the camera angle, so I know that the camera/holder has been set up correctly.

Also (and almost certainly related), when I synch the drone to a smartphone, it never shows any image.  The app loaded correctly, and *does* fly the drone without any problem.  But nothing on the screen.  Obviously the issue that stops the camera/video from working is also affecting FPV.

2.  Second step:  Contacted Holy Stone customer support.  They suggested several things.  (Upload most recent version of the app, trying it with a completely different smartphone.)  Neither of these worked.  Finally, they assumed that camera itself was defective and shipped me an entirely new and complete set.  All I did was take the camera out of that and attach it to my original drone.  Same exact issue [grumble, grumble].  Tried installing both old camera and new camera onto new drone.  Same result . . . taking photos or videos yields zero files.  :-(

 

Any suggestions?  I wish there was some sort of drone hobby group here in the Los Angeles area.  I'd happy drive out there and ask a more-expert person for setup help.  But a Google search and a Meetup search yielded nothing.  Since Holy Stone seems to be sold only online, it's not like I can take it into a store and say, "Here . . . fix whatever defect is preventing this from working!" 9_9

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Sorry for pointing out the obvious but it's an $89 Chinese drone, how much support did you expect?  

You can check out the Society Of Aerial Cinematographers https://thesoac.com/ in Burbank.  They won't help you with your toy but they are serious photographers and cinematographers using drones. 

 

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Chuck,

No problem.  You'll notice that I was not whining about the Holy Stone customer service.  Merely asking for advice . . . in case someone had had an issue getting a camera to work.  Toy or professional drone--the mechanics are the same, in terms of transferring a digital image to a memory card.

(I'll point out that the customer service has been remarkably good at HS.  They sent me a second drone, gratis, with a promise to send me a 3rd one as well, if the second one cannot be made to work.)

Thanks for the link to the Burbank group.  But they're not at all what I'm looking for (ie, hobbyists).  But looks like a great resource for people trying to use drones in a professional capacity.

Edited by santamonica811

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Update.

The problem was finally diagnosed.  The Holy Stone drones do not play nicely with Android phones.  They work well with some of them and not with others.  No correlation between age of phone, quality (ie, price), wireless speed etc and working or not working.

On the other hand; it does work well with iPhones.  In a follow-up to Holy Stone customer service (after I tested my drone with about 8 Android phones and 2 iPhones), they admitted that this is a known bug.

So, I'd highly recommend the HS drones if you have an iPhone.  But crazy to take a chance if you have an Android . . . unless you have a friend with a HS drone and can confirm in advance that your particular phone works.

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I assembled my drone and had the first test flight (success) . But no camera , when the directions say check WiFi, you have to go to settings and switch over to holly stone WiFi , 

hope this helps, 

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Not sure this will help but I had the same issue when I first got my drone. I'm very new to this but it seems like the app only works when the drone is paired with the remote (which apparently has to be done every time you turn it on). When I try to load the app without the drone and remote paired, it spins and will not load. Once I turn the drone on, turn the remote on and pair them - the app starts working on my Android phone.

Hope it helps, I look forward to many hours of play time with my new drone 🙂

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