Betaflight Firmware Guide on iFlight BNFs

Betaflight Firmware Guide on iFlight BNFs

First of all, a disclaimer:

NO, YOU DON'T NEED to update Betaflight !!!!!

Read this disclaimer BEFORE you do anything firmware related! More than 50% of our support work is linked to messed up firmware, flash-bricked flight controllers or misconfigured BNF drones. So don't waste your time or money, FPV quads are more fun flying than fixing...

(BNF stands for Bind and Fly drone)

1.) It's a misconception that every new firmware version flies better, feels better or has no problems. If any friend, reviewer or influencer jumps on the hype train for clicks or views then either ignore it or understand that some pilots might be at a much higher level of skill to even feel a difference. 

2.) Make a risk analysis every time you flash a new firmware, apply a new preset or change settings of your BNF drone. "Never touch a running system" we all know is something that Karma whispers us in our ear... Keeping all your drones updated is like chasing your own shadow, without having a single reliable drone to fly with. Relax and go fly!

3.) The firmware on your flight controller (your drone's flight electronics) is open source and beta (under constant development), that means a skilled team of hobby developers work in their spare time to enhance and optimize flight performance and features. Some updates fix issues but sometimes also create some new ones.

4.) Your iFlight BNF has a firmware version that is tested and found reliable from factory! Don't mess things up! We do not control firmware development! To ensure safety and usability we purposely select a firmware for our factory defaults! Updating to anything else but recommended by iFlight might result in problems or can be a hazard to yourself or your surrounding, you might also lose your drone or damage it!

5.) Your iFlight BNF has been carefully setup and tuned to have the right balance of performance, stability and flight time. Your BNF is configured how it is on purpose! Don't mess things up! Watching half a video on YouTube won't make you a Pro. Please go out and have fun flying instead of brick/unbrick your firmware!

6.) If we can recommend an updated firmware or optimized tune, we'll announce it in our Team iFlight Facebook group:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1126000407525570/.

7.) If you decided to manually upgrade to a newer firmware please keep in mind to backup your current configuration and take responsibility for any unwanted outcome of your own doing!

8.) Advanced users will have the option to apply for access on our always updated Github repository for latest presets with updated settings. This will not be available for everyone to prevent beginners from overestimating their abilities!

9.) If you mess up anything, you're the only one to blame! Alright? Don't go out and be disrespectful to community members trying to help. Don't take your anger or bad attitude to our iFlight Support while asking for support!

Please visit our freshdesk support page and you will be helped.

https://iflightrc.freshdesk.com/support/home

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If you just skipped the disclaimer, go back and read it! It's important!

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How to connect to the Betaflight Configurator:

First, you need to download the latest Betaflight Configurator and install it on your computer. Windows computers recommended!

https://github.com/betaflight/betaflight-configurator/releases

1. Open up the Betaflight Configurator and connect to the flight controller USB port of your BNF drone. The flight controller is usually sitting at the center, either with sidepanels or without depending on your model. While doing that, please read the sticker applied for your convenience.

Second picture shows the video transmitter in the back of the BNF drone with USB port as well, it's NOT the flight controller. The transmitter in this picture is the DJI O3 Air Unit which can be accessed and updated with DJI Software only. 

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If you have any problems with your drivers connecting to the Betaflight Configurator, please download the ImpulseRC driver fixer while having your flight controller connected to your computer USB port. It will automatically install the correct drivers on your windows machine. If that doesn't help, change your USB cable and avoid USB hubs.

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How to backup your Firmware Configuration using the Presets tab:

1.) Click on the Presets tab on the left in the Configurator to access the Betaflight official Preset library. This doesn't contain any iFlight Presets by default since we are maintaining and updating our own library.

2.) Click on "Save backup" which will export a file with all settings that are currently applied to your drone. Save that file on a secure place, you might need it some day! Hopefully not today...

Remember that this backup can ONLY be applied to the corresponding Betaflight firmware version. If you're not sure what version you're on, just check the header of the just generated backup file. In this example, the version would be 4.4.1. Going down a bit I also see the board_name IFLIGHT_BLITZ_F722 which represents the flight controller model and name of the firmware target I'd have to flash. More about that later.

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How to add the iFlight Factory Preset Library:

1.) Click on the Presets tab on the left in the Configurator to access the Betaflight official Preset library. This doesn't contain any iFlight Presets by default since we are maintaining and updating our own library.

 2.) Click on "Preset sources" to add our iFlight Preset library. A new small window will pop up.

3.) Click on "Add new source" and copy the following text without any backspace (empty space) at the beginning or end of each line.

iFlight Factory Recovery
https://github.com/XING-IF/firmware-presets/
iFlight-factory-recovery

Click on "Save" and "Make it active" then "OK" to close the window and load the Presets into the Configurator.

4.) Select the Category "BNF". Make sure all other options of the cells Keywords, Authors, Firmwares and Status are empty.

5.) The available factory tunes appear for many different iFlight BNFs. If you can't find your model, please send a ticket on our support page.

https://iflightrc.freshdesk.com/support/home

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IMPORTANT! Every Preset has a text with "Firmware" and version next to it that MUST be flashed before the Preset can be correctly applied. The firmware version and the preset version have to match. The RC1 in the name is only a marker for "Release Candidate 1" which is our internal way of tracking the preset releases.

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How to flash the iFlight Factory Default Firmware:

1.) The available preset is made for the latest firmware version that is tested and found reliable from our factory, in this example it's the version 4.3.2. Therefore we have to flash the firmware 4.3.2 before we can apply the preset.

6.) To get to the firmware flash menu just click on "Update Firmware" in the upper right corner.

7.) You're now in the Firmware Flasher screen. Click on "Auto-detect" to automatically detect the correct firmware target for your flight controller. DO NOT TRUST this, but verify if it's correct. As described above, checking your backup file can reveal the correct target firmware.

8.) My BNF drone needs the following setup:

- IFLIGHT_BLITZ_F722 target (confirmed correct)
- 4.3.2 (matches the available factory preset)
- Full chip erase (to make a full wipe)

Everything else can be left at the defaults.

9.) Click on "Load Firmware Online" at the bottom right corner to pull the firmware file from the Betaflight Server. When successful the "Flash Firmware" button turns yellow and you're able to click it.

Attention: If the progress bar gets stuck at STM BOOTLOADER or DFU then you might not yet have the correct DFU drivers installed. Leave your flight controller USB cable plugged in as it is. Use the ImpulseRC driver fixer again to automatically fix your DFU driver issues. Disconnect and reconnect the USB cable and try all over again.

10.) A successful firmware flash will throw a green progress bar at the bottom.

11.) Don't forget to apply custom defaults after a firmware flash! Every flight controller has slightly different firmware settings that needs to be applied after flashing. 

 

Click on "Apply Custom Defaults" to get your flight controller hardware specific configuration. This will NOT restore any BNF drone related settings!

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How to restore the iFlight Factory Default Preset:

A preset includes a table of settings that are different for every model or version. Every frame, motor, propeller size, weight etc etc needs a certain adaptation of parameters. We've done that for you already!

1.) Once again we go to the Presets tab and select BNF in the Categories dropdown, keep all other keywords empty.

2. We select the model and version of our BNF drone.

3. You read through the Preset description CAREFULLY to avoid any mistakes that could lead to problems with your configuration. Then you click on "Options" to select the self explanatory variant options.

If those options are not self explanatory please go ahead and join our Team iFlight facebook group or our facebook community chat to get excellent help of our pilots there:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1126000407525570/.

If you need our support then come and send us a ticket on our freshdesk:

https://iflightrc.freshdesk.com/support/home

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4. In my example, I leave the pre-checked options as it was but select the CRSF/ELRS Receiver and HD DJI VTX additionally to further narrow down the model or variant I bought. Since there is more than one variant available, there's several options. You bought the BNF drone, you should therefore know what you own and what to select.

5. Click on "Pick" to start confirm the preset you just selected. You'll get a warning message and agree to the written text! You are responsible for any modification of your gear, also flashing back and forth different presets! Please remember that!

 

6. You Click on "Save and Reboot" and the Preset recovery is running through. As soon as it's finished, your BNF drone will be reset to our factory default settings!

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Thank me later

XING

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3 Kommentare

I agree with Patrick here ! 4.2.3 is currently the most reliable version of betaflight from a performance – stability standpoint. I do run 4.4. on a ProtecHD35 and an a Chimera7 Pro with the first tunes Patrick posted (a bit tweaked to my style) and they both work well. And be careful with the GPS rescue and auto land functionality in 4.4. It is meant as a redundancy and you will need to carefully consider what scenario you initiate it in ! With a friend we did a lot of testing on two 7 inch builds and it seems that its a 1 in 3 thing and not very tolerant to non default settings at the moment. So about every 3-5 landing do not go as planned due to external factors. So unless you like the thrill of being a test pilot I would stay clear of that and as stated ! Flying is more fun then fixing XD

Aleš Kegl

Because neither 4.4 nor 4.4.1 were unproblematic for everyone. GPS functionality, GPS rescue, M10 modules… all these things together are currently more “reliable” on 4.3.2 in our opinion.

Patrick

why they remove 4.4.0?

George Aronis

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