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Hi, as I'm learning all the various technologies especially for mapping I have read that PPK is a better route to take than RTK. Today I was reading the article on the new DJI Phantom 4RTK which sounds like it has overcome the few disadvantages that past reviews have discussed. Is it safe to say that RTK, at least with the new phantom, is a better option? Thanks

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29 minutes ago, MileHigh said:

Is it safe to say that RTK, at least with the new phantom, is a better option? Thanks

No!  Don’t believe DJI hype. 

They talk almost exclusively about RTK and mention PPK as an adjunct. RTK is not necessary in the application they are promoting, there’s really nothing “Real-time” about surveying.  

It has not overcome the disadvantages of occlusion, accuracy, acquisition setup time etc., and their claims of accuracy in the video of this article are over simplified, to put it mildly.

They claim 2cm accuracy, not with a 20MP camera and using 9MB jpegs.  

This is DJI being DJI!  I don’t recall the name of the company that developed the LOKI, but they probably had the best RTK solution you could put on a Phantom.  DJI has replaced it with a lot of oversimplified marketing and crappy cheap hardware.   

 

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First, I would say that time will tell with the P4-RTK. Let's see how it works in the real world and how various mapping scenarios effect it's performance. It is an advancement for the P4P in that DJI has provided a built in solution to the problem of timing the GPS data precisely to the picture. Most cameras have a hot shoe for the flash attachment that can be used to time the data, but no such thing is on the P4P, and that timing is critical and is also the focus of 3rd party RTK adapters for the P4P.

The new P4-RTK does not change any of the previously noted differences between RTK and PPK. The nice thing with the P4-RTK is that you can use it both ways. 

I have never been in the PPK is obviously better camp. It is better if you are concerned about the issues that you have with possible loss of signal with RTK. But those can be mitigated and the advantages of RTK, in my opinion, out weigh the risks. 

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17 minutes ago, GAProctor said:

It is an advancement for the P4P in that DJI has provided a built in solution to the problem of timing the GPS data precisely to the picture.

Only in the sense that DJI screwed up by not providing a way to sync the camera in the first place and it only took them three years and the success of 3rd party applications to fix it.  

24 minutes ago, GAProctor said:

I have never been in the PPK is obviously better camp. It is better if you are concerned about the issues that you have with possible loss of signal with RTK.

That possible loss of signal IS the problem with RTK, although this effects PPK as well.  I’m also not in favor of one or the other.  I just pointed out that “realtime” is not necessary.  

31 minutes ago, GAProctor said:

First, I would say that time will tell with the P4-RTK. Let's see how it works in the real world and how various mapping scenarios effect it's performance.

Time reveals all.  Fortunately we don’t have to wait.  Like all things DJI, a few evangelists will choose to get one as soon as they can and go on forums telling everyone what a great drone this is all the while complaining how well it works.  Then 6-12 months later DJI will eventually get the RTK to work but in the process the new firmware will have totally messed up the gimbal, camera, crystal sky monitor, etc... But about eighteen months later they will get it to work while at the same time releasing the “New” and improved replacement to start the cycle over giving the evangelists the opportunity to say “I told you so.”  

I agree, time will tell.  

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