JBR LIFE Photography

Ahhh the firmware update gremlins

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Yesterday I showed up to fly a project with a message on my screen that an update was required.  I've avoided the updates since June, and decided I liked the features in the newest release and I should go ahead and do this update.  Updated the bird, got ready to fly and boom...brick.  No feed from the camera, remote inputs all over the place and inconsistent, flashing green/red connection light on the remote.  Controller firmware version reads: Unknown Device, Unknown Firmware.

Called DJI support, explained the situation, performed a handful of manual firmware upgrade / update commands and no luck.  Now my kit is boxed up, awaiting the shipping label they're supposed to send.  I'll keep y'all posted as to how this pans out.  The lady recommended I send only the remote controller, but I know better than that silliness.  I did read about others having the same issues, some of whom received brand new Phantom 4 kits in return.  Maybe I'll get lucky and they'll send me a P4A :)

 

 

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7 hours ago, Av8Chuck said:

I gues it depends how you define lucky..

Do you have a spare?  

Fortunately, my son has a P4A that we can use over the course of probably the next month.  I'm thinking some backup alternative such as Autel might be in order in the future.  As much as I'd love to spring for a beautiful Inspire 2 with 5.2k video, I'd hate to have all the birds grounded over an update.

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On 08/12/2017 at 5:53 PM, JBR LIFE Photography said:

Yesterday I showed up to fly a project with a message on my screen that an update was required.  I've avoided the updates since June, and decided I liked the features in the newest release and I should go ahead and do this update.  Updated the bird, got ready to fly and boom...brick.  No feed from the camera, remote inputs all over the place and inconsistent, flashing green/red connection light on the remote.  Controller firmware version reads: Unknown Device, Unknown Firmware.

Called DJI support, explained the situation, performed a handful of manual firmware upgrade / update commands and no luck.  Now my kit is boxed up, awaiting the shipping label they're supposed to send.  I'll keep y'all posted as to how this pans out.  The lady recommended I send only the remote controller, but I know better than that silliness.  I did read about others having the same issues, some of whom received brand new Phantom 4 kits in return.  Maybe I'll get lucky and they'll send me a P4A :)

 

 

That sucks sorry, does sound like the radio but you are best shipping the whole lot in this situation as you have done, I hope they get you sorted quickly, as a matter of interest did you have the HDMI board fitted to the radio as I have seen specifically some issses with the update with that onboard ?, mostly the combination of HDMI board and Android I have seen it with.  

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11 hours ago, Mad_Angler1 said:

That sucks sorry, does sound like the radio but you are best shipping the whole lot in this situation as you have done, I hope they get you sorted quickly, as a matter of interest did you have the HDMI board fitted to the radio as I have seen specifically some issses with the update with that onboard ?, mostly the combination of HDMI board and Android I have seen it with.  

I have no mods to the bird or the remote. Tried with both iPad and iPhone 7+, same two devices I've used for a year without trouble. All of this was a direct result of performing the update, I'm certain. What I can't believe is that DJI didn't pull the update upon the first system failure, rather than allowing it to continue since June.

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Progress Update:

Received a repair quote from DJI today.  $391 worth of repairs to the aircraft, zero mention of what will fix the controller issue.  I called support to find out more, ended up in a circular conversation with the tech guy, who continually asked me 'What exactly happened to your aircraft?'  I finally had to respond with, 'I need you to stop talking, listen to my words, and read the words I wrote clearly on the repair request order.  The issues are listed in order of importance, the primary of which is the fact that after performing a firmware upgrade, the controller crashed and the aircraft became completely unusable.'

After 20 minutes of this nonsense, we ended with 'I've sent an email to our higher department, who will respond in 1-2 days.'

I can see now that this is going to be like chopping wood...probably worth it, but a helluva lotta work.

Meanwhile, Canon has already assessed & repaired my broken lens, the process of which required zero additional communication beyond what I listed on the repair order. 

Edited by JBR LIFE Photography

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@JBR LIFE Photography Thanks for posting these details.  DJI's firmware is the THE most frustrating part about using their equipment.  You would think they would have better quality assurance.  This is why many people consider them to be an expensive toy manufacturer, not a professionals drone.  But, at the same time, they have all of our business, so they must be doing something that is just better than the competition.

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1 hour ago, ScottF said:

But, at the same time, they have all of our business, so they must be doing something that is just better than the competition.

With the Phantom DJI got the first mover advantage in the consumer/toy drone market. Prior to that all multirotors required some soldering and assembly, the Phantom flew right out of the box.

You can decide for yourselves how effective DJI has been in the commercial market.  Personally as a professional I will not use a DJI drone, how can you if you can’t trust it to arm under all circumstances. 

The challenge in the commercial market is that as long as DJI was perceived to be the market leader competition didn’t have access to capital.  That began changing when DJI was banned by the military. 

Again people can debate the effect of the ban on DJI but how it effects competition will depend on how it’s positioned to take advantage of this. 

It’s widely known that my opinion is that DJI has stalled the commercial market and if capital becomes more readily available other new manufactures will build solutions that are more innovative.  Even if they’re not, as long as they work, they can compete.  

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