3D FPV goggles: why are they so hard to come by?

3D FPV goggles: why are they so hard to come by?

Next up in our “Ask Drone Girl” collection is about 3D FPV goggles and why they’re so laborious to come back by (no, DJI doesn’t promote any). If you might have a query for Drone Girl, contact her here.

I’m in search of a commercially manufactured drone for FPV that has two cameras and 3D goggles for the complete, 3D-visual flying expertise. I hoped that DJI would create this, however I don’t suppose they may. Is there any firm on the market that about that makes a real 3D-vision drone and goggles?


For this query, I reached out to a few of the greatest FPV pilots I do know, Jessika Farrar and Lexie Janson. And each of them got here to the identical conclusion: there simply aren’t any ready-to-fly drones on the market accessible on the market which have 3D video as an choice.

“Right now if you wish to do 3D FPV video with a drone you don’t have many choices, but it surely’s not unimaginable,” stated Jessika Farrar, the Chief UAS Pilot at Robotic Research LLC and a lifetime RC fanatic.

Her recommendation is to attempt to recreate your individual 3D FPV goggles utilizing present gear accessible on the market. Here are some choices:

The Skyzone 3D FPV Goggles have been discontinued, however you might be able to discover a pair on-line.

Buy used Skyzone 3D FPV Goggles

Skyzone used to make 3D FPV Goggles with a 3D Camera, twin transmitter, and twin receivers. Alas, they were discontinued, regardless of receiving improbable opinions from those that used them.

“This proprietary set of substances will be simply outfitted on nearly any drone with 3″ props and up and would supply the complete 3D FPV expertise,” Farrar stated

Browse eBay or drone boards and Facebook teams to attempt to get your fingers on a brand new pair. But even when you handle to discover a used pair of Skyzone 3D FPV Goggles, it’s nonetheless not utterly able to go off-the-shelf. You’ll must do some tinkering, constructing and electronics engineering so as to add it in to the precise drone.

Farrar did add which you could nonetheless purchase the dual cam and video transmitter new as unfastened substitute elements. It’s discovering the precise goggles that may probably be the laborious half.

The Blackbird 2.0 twin digicam

Use a Blackbird 2.0 twin digicam

Farrar additionally recommends discovering a Blackbird 2.0 dual camera — although once more that could be robust. It appears to be out of inventory in every single place, so that you’ll have to seek out it used. If you do get your fingers on one, you possibly can pair it with any conventional video transmitter and a pair of 3D succesful goggles — whatever the model (we advocate one thing just like the Fatshark Dominator HD).

Make your movies 3D in post-production

Lexie Jansen, a well-known FPV drone racer, advised a hack that entails capturing conventional FPV video. Then, use a service like Visual Vertigo to show your digicam right into a 3D digicam. Their patented know-how permits customers to make use of any digicam available on the market to take actual 3D footage and movies that may be seen utilizing any sensible telephone and VR headset. No extra {hardware} is required — it’s all achieved via software program.

Why is it so laborious to seek out 3D FPV goggles?

There are a couple of explanation why it’s so laborious to seek out 3D FPV goggles, together with the proprietary nature of the 3D techniques of the previous and the price prohibitiveness of all of the tools wanted to do it, Farrar stated.

“$180 for an FPV digicam on a drone that you’re completely going to smash again in 2016 was simply outrageous,” she stated.

And then maybe one other even larger purpose why 3D FPV goggles have by no means actually caught on: lack of selling. More particularly — no free promoting on social media.

“With no solution to share this 3D expertise with anybody similar to on social media, the individuals who have been having fun with the 3D video expertise weren’t capable of be loud and proud about it,” she stated. “They loved it quietly.”

Think of all the opposite large hype waves. People put up their Peloton exercises on the app’s group web page and out of the blue Peloton is large. People geotag eating places on Instagram and out of the blue everybody needs that photogenic donut. And individuals put up their drone movies to YouTube, Facebook, Instagram — and actually in every single place on-line — and other people need a drone But there’s no nice solution to share particularly 3D drone movies.

“Thus 3D video by no means actually skilled the phrase of mouth or social media impact,” Farrar stated.

Alas, Skyzone’s newer goggle moddles don’t have 3D {hardware}.

And even when you do discover it, count on to pony up some money.

“This gear is just not low-cost, regardless that it’s over 5 years outdated now,” Farrar stated. “In 2021 we’re nonetheless speaking practically $100 only for an analog SD digicam — when you may even discover it anyplace.”

What does the long run maintain for 3D FPV goggles?

DJI FPV drone racing
DJI FPV launched in March 2021.

It’s laborious to say whether or not corporations will make 3D FPV goggles sooner or later.

“With any luck, possibly an organization like Orqa (which makes the FPV.One goggles) will take it on,” Farrar stated, suggesting the Croatia-based firm is greatest positioned to sort out a product like this. Orqa builds antennas, radio controllers, headsets and low latency video sign transport techniques, and the corporate does nearly all of its engineering in home together with mechanical engineering, electronics design, RF design, firmware improvement, optics design and prototyping.

DJI has taken only a few steps into the FPV drone racing world, having most lately launched its FPV drone earlier this yr. That stated, there’s no indication DJI would increase all the way in which to 3D.

“HD just like the DJI system in 3D can be really epic however I can solely dream,” Farrar stated.

For now, it appears like little curiosity in 3D FPV drones means there’s little hope that the market will construct merchandise for the small handful of potential patrons.

“Maybe Skyzone can carry it again from the lifeless,” Farrar stated. “Right now I’m afraid it’s sadly a misplaced and forgotten vertical.”