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Attention: RC-CAM.com will be closing down August 2021.

The RC-Cam.com forum was the very first online community dedicated to the advancement of wireless video cameras on radio controlled (R/C) models. This is now called "FPV" (First Person View). We are proud of the contributions that our members have made to the FPV hobby.

We've seen significant changes over the last twenty years. Initially there were a lot of eager R/C hobbyist that built their own video systems. Allowing these creative individuals to share their work was the purpose of this site. Now the FPV market is flooded with low cost systems; Sadly DiY FPV video projects are now rarely discussed.

RC-CAM.com (main site and forum) will be closing down August 2021. This is being announced now (March 2021) so that everyone has time to download any information that is important to them. After the site is shutdown the information will no longer be available here.

We appreciate every member's involvement with advancing the FPV hobby. It is indeed sad to say goodbye to all our online friends. Be safe and stay healthy.

Is it time to call it a day?

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Last year I struggled to fly more than 20 times or so and did nothing ground breaking. This year I have not flown anything at all so far as I have put other projects first, rebuilding my camper van, making laser tag guns, racing rc cars with my boy and a huge amount of other jobs not to mention my day job.

Also FPV and AP have changed, in the early days you really had to know what you were doing and even then a small success was hard fought. Now even advanced autopilots are available off the shelf at a fraction of the cost of my first video TX.

Now the CAA has got involved as anyone with money can fly anywhere and post a stupid video on youtube, being sensible makes no difference as we a get tarred with the same brush.

In short its not what it was, is it time to give it all up for good or maybe time to go a different direction?

I have often thought about deep sea exploration with ROVs, a whole new set of challenges with not much off the shelf stuff available....hmmmm


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First, it's good to see you are still around. Yes, I noticed you've been off the grid!

I can empathize with your state of mind -- things have changed for sure. Especially since this is a DiY site and it's very clear that new hobbyists are not very interested in that sort of thing. And when I say DiY, I don't mean grabbing some off-the-shelf parts and screwing/plugging them together. I mean building something electronic that is at least moderately complex using raw components. You know, like bygone days when such projects were a regular occurrence on this forum.

In case it helps, I'll share how I've re-charged my excitement. I've decided that I need to do what keeps me interested in this hobby. Some of which I blog about here, despite there being relatively no one else that is interested in my projects. For example, instead of buying ready to install IMU boards for my Quadcopters, I designed my own. There's been some other projects too; most recently was the DiY FrSky hub board. Things like this can be bought factory made for a fraction of the cost, but doing it that way is not my thing.

My best Fatherly advice is for you to think about an R/C related electronic project that is meaningful to you. Forget about everyone else. Just build something that challenges you and then enjoy using it. And as much as I know you hate to post about your projects (because of the trolls), maybe you should do some show and tell. After all, sharing our projects and ideas is what brought a lot of us here over a decade ago. And it made a difference in our hobby.

It would be horrible to see you move on and get into needlepoint or stamp collecting. There's been too many other highly regarded rc-cam members that have already done that and the hobby is not the same without them. So I challenge you to get on with a cool R/C or wireless video project. And that includes your deep sea ROV. Build it, or anything else you want, then tell us about it.

- Thomas

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Hey Terry, don't despair.

I'm in a similar boat to you (pun!).

Been out twice this year and last year wasn't much better.

I'm now moving house and will lose my workshop etc for at least 12 months before I can get a new one built as we intend to seriously modify the new property.

I agree that there doesn't seem to be much interest in new ideas/concepts/innovations, other than buying them straight off the shelf.

I commented in the posting regarding the demise of Heathkit - it's the same kind of problem, but in a different hobby.

Maybe you could think about an R/C rock crawler/off roader with head tracking for the lad? as an underwater RV is going to be a challenge too far I think.

I remember about 30 years ago (around the time of the Falklands conflict) the whole of the south-west pylon power grid was used for VLF communication testing with submarines.

That would mean an antenna of maybe hundreds of miles in length to be able to communicate with submerged submarines ?!

Maybe we should try to get out once this year before the jet stream moves back again !!


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Its not despair Nigel :) I just dont have the time due to so many other interests and I guess I met all my goals!

I have planes that will fly higher and further and for longer than I need and can do it with very little chance of a mishap. At the end of the day everything you could ever want is available off the shelf now so there seems little point in making your own and wasting many hours on R & D.

I never wanted a radio control sub, I was planning to use a fibre optic cable ;)

Still looking for circuit to send the video up it!

I did start an off road FPV explorer but most of the bits are still on my bench :( I was planning a wireless link to a repeater mast over the fields to give me a good signal from home...

Its hard to let go though, not sure what to sell :( want anything???


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I daren't get any more bits Terry as my available hobby time over the coming year will be quite limited with an impending house (bungalow) move.

The 'new' place needs some TLC, which is great as the price was right and I get to make it just how I want it and a decent sized hobby room is on the cards ;)

You'll definitely need head tracking on the FPV explorer for when you cross the road from your place to the field :D

There is a thread running on RCG about using the low cost RFM22B UHF modules for repeaters, can't find it right now though.

I think it's muddled in with a thread running by 'fmkit' about his Nunchuck controllers with the RFM22B module...

I'm playing with the OpenLRS on 459MHz and a homebrewed version of hardware using different software than the OpenLRS stuff.

Time is my enemy right now.

I'll still be watching the forums...


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Still looking for circuit to send the video up it!

I have some experience sending analog/composite video signal through fiber optic cable. The optical transmitter and receiver were small off-the-shelf 5V powered modules that directly accepted composite video. The cable was glass fiber, not the plastic variety (but just as flexible). The parts we used were expensive, but it was over a decade ago so hopefully such things are lower cost today.

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Thats interesting, I was playing with using a laser diode which gave a good signal even with cheap plastic cable. It was great for digital signals but never got composite video to work, Im sure it will but I guess I didnt spend enough time on it.


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