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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On 9/25/2017 at 1:41 AM, santamonica811 said:

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.

I also had issues with the HS160.  My Samsung S10 with Android 9 just wouldn't work.  HS Support worked with me for a week trying to get things to work.  I now find out that many drones like iPhones and are not so friendly to Android.  I now have a SYNC 251 and a very old Samsung S3 with Android 4.4 and all is well.

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I have the Hs700D .  I can get the FPV to work fine, however when I try and take a photo it occasionally works, but I can never get the video to work.  When I switch to video and click on the red button in the app, the red dot flashes on the top right, but it says record success after about 5 or 10 seconds and the video is never is saved to the as card.  When I click on the TF video icon in photos, it says error, no data on SD card.

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I have been gifted a new production HS100. I have the iPhone app. Pictures and video clips are being recorded to the iPhone, but not to the card. The supplied card reader appears to be working, I viewed the empty card and reformatted it tonight. Have yet to fly without the phone, or try the photo or video buttons on the controller without the phone. It seems that it should record to the card then at least. If not I'll give them a call.

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8 hours ago, JLogan said:

I have the Hs700D .  I can get the FPV to work fine, however when I try and take a photo it occasionally works, but I can never get the video to work.  When I switch to video and click on the red button in the app, the red dot flashes on the top right, but it says record success after about 5 or 10 seconds and the video is never is saved to the as card.  When I click on the TF video icon in photos, it says error, no data on SD card.

Same problem here with the HS 700D. If I install an exFat formatted SD, it records nothing on it. If I remove it, the app saves the footage directly on the phone, but jittery and with a lower quality.

Edited by Mihai

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I turned mine on (calibrated into ready to fly mode) in the living room without the phone. No flying. Using the transmitter only, I could control the camera up/down and shot both videos and stills and they were saved successfully to the card. Hitting the camera button on the transmitter to do that. ALSO stopping video with the transmitter button saves video to the card. I suspect this iOs version of the app isn't working properly with my iPhone. Also, there are way fewer button icons on the phone screen than the one shown in the manual....wonder what others have. I might remove the app and re-install.

Edited by wallywyo
fix typos

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UPDATE: I have mine working now. I did the shotgun approach: Formatted and gave the card a name. Put drone into ready to fly mode without the phone. Took pictures and video with the transmitter only, no phone. Pics and video were saved to the card. The manual only says to stop the video recording to save to card. Those files all were dated out into year 2028, which is a typical of a software glitch. I removed and totally uninstalled the app from my iPhone. Installed it again from scratch using a strong connection. The manual only displays the app screen for Android. The app itself on the iPhone has a 'Quick Start' icon and that displays the iPhone version of the screen with explanations. The manual should show that. I let it sit a while after telling it to open the app. Then, following the manual precisely, I started up and got into 'Ready to Fly' mode. Used the phone to take pics and shoot video, start and stop. It saved to both the phone and the card, 3 videos, 2 pics. They are all dated and time stamped correctly. Maybe this will help someone else.

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Wally, you were able to get images saved to the card such that you could remove the card and connect to computer and the images were still there on the card?

I’m having thew same issue as mentioned above- I see images saved to the memory card within the ophelia app while connected to the drone, so i know images are there (although there is no preview of the image until i download to the phone...)

BUT- if i remove the memory card from the camera and insert it into a card reader on my computer, the memory card shows as completely blank..

thoughts?

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Yes , everything is working as it should. I do make sure to stop recording video, and I give it maybe 10 seconds before shutting everything down, assuming it takes some time to write video to the cards. I think re-formatting the card may have helped, so the drone/camera gets to write without anything else on there. My images and condensed video are on the phone without me downloading to the phone, they go automatically. Not using Ophelia with this HS100, using the HS100 specific app.

Edited by wallywyo

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I have been messing around with my HS110D drone for a few hours trying to figure out why it wouldnt record with a microsd card, but finally found out the fix. It looks like my unit specifically (i dont know about the other units) only supports FAT32 formatting. I had exFAT earlier and it never worked with it. So try formatting the SD card to FAT32 (up to 32GB memory card) and see if that works. 

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This thread has been SUPER helpful!

I have the HS110D 720P drone gifted to me for Christmas 2019.  What a GREAT beginners drone!  Paired with the controller and (after selecting HolyStone as my iPhone WiFi via iPhone Settings) then the iPhone HS app.  FPV on the iPhone works flawlessly but most of the videos I take have several periods of frozen/stutter in them.  I am not using a SD card - didn't even know one could be used...

I will be using a FAT32 formatted SD card and will reply back with results - once the wind drops down.

BTW:  I find this drone much easier to fly in "Headless" mode as directional orientation is relevant to the controller so right is always to MY right, left is always to MY left, etc. etc. regardless of the drones orientation.

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I connected my motorola G7 android phone  several times successfully to the Holystone HS120D  by 1) Turn on Drone. 2) Turn on handset, connecting to and pairing the drone to the handset. 3) go to settings on the droid and make sure you have connected to the drone, then forget the network and reconnect to the drone. after several seconds the phone will ask if you trust the network and you say yes. You have to do this  every time.

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