General questions about the product
- 1 MICROBEAST vs. MICROBEAST PLUS
- 2 MICROBEAST PLUS vs. MICROBEAST PLUS HD
- 3 MICROBEAST PLUS from ALIGN
- 4 Can I use MICROBEAST PLUS with a gasser heli, especially with RPM Governor and AttitudeControl?
- 5 Is it possible to connect 4 swash plate servos to MICROBEAST / MICROBEAST PLUS?
- 6 Differences between firmware versions (changelog)
- 7 My MICROBEAST / MICROBEAST PLUS is defective, where can I send it?
MICROBEAST vs. MICROBEAST PLUS
MICROBEAST was the first product of BEASTX company. It is a flybarless unit that can be programmed without the need for a computer or external programming device. Its unique EasySetup makes it possible to program the system within a few minutes just by using the button on the unit and your transmitter. There are not many parameters to adjust as MICROBEAST can be used with nearly any RC helicopter model "out of the box".
MICROBEAST PLUS is the successor of MICROBEAST and comes with new hardware components like more powerful microcontroller and more accurate gyro sensors. Due to these new capabilities MICROBEAST PLUS can be upgraded with lots of additional features like an artificial horizon for controlling the attitude (used for Bailout rescue, flight training and angular mode), a governor function for controlling the rotor headspeed of the helicopter as well as a Bank switch feature for adding several parameter sets to serve different flight conditions.
MICROBEAST PLUS vs. MICROBEAST PLUS HD
I intend to use the MICROBEAST PLUS on my 600/700 heli. Should I go with the HD version? What's the difference?
Today's servos and especially so-called high voltage servos typically have a very high power consumption. When using Futaba BLS 451 servos for example these are very modest. Savöx 1258/Align DS610 are much more demanding - one alone taking up to 15Amps peak for the instance of a second. And for very extreme example take high voltage Savöx servos SB-2271SG HV. They demand up to 27Amps (1 Servo!) peak which you can see when measuring the power consumption with an oscilloscope. So besides using a good stable and high rated power supply you have to ensure proper supply of the servos with this power. But when only connecting one servo plug with power leads into the receiver this may be insufficient and cause a "bottle neck" in power flow. Also when the current must take a long way through the receiver, the wiring and the MICROBEAST, this will produce high resistance due to the connections in between and additional loss of voltage. There is no benefit if the power supply/BEC itself can deliver 20-25A when this amount of current is not able to flow to the consumers.
Now the idea behind MICROBEAST PLUS HD is to provide a power connection that allows for using thick power cables and directly connect these to the unit, close to the servos. So the voltage loss due to wiring and plug connection is reduced to a minimum. In general for helis with standard size servo you should always use MICROBEAST PLUS HD, because this will eliminate the "servo plug problem" as one important factor that may be critical in regards to the power supply. But also keep an eye on the design of your power supply in general. I.e. when using an ESC with only one BEC line there will no benefit of using the HD version as you already have a "bottle neck" at the power output. The small wire will not be able to transfer more than 5 Amps continuous current. Connecting this little wire to MICROBEAST's HD input will not help very much here. If on the other hand you have at least two or even three BEC lines then this can be different as you may solder the power wires from the BEC together to the MICROBEAST PLUS HD high power plug. Then you have a much lower contact resistance compared to only connect the wires using the standard servo plugs, which is a real benefit for providing a stable power supply. Ideally you have a BEC or receiver battery that already comes with thick power wires. Here it is ideal to use MICROBEAST PLUS HD. Also when using a separate receiver battery i. e. on nitro or gas helis using MICROBEAST PLUS HD is the ideal way to connect the battery to your RC system. In addition to the adequate connection plug here you have an integrated switch system for switching the heli on and off, so there is no need to buy an extra switch.
In regards to software and functionality in general there is no difference between MICROBEAST PLUS and MICROBEAST PLUS HD! Both use the same firmware and you can buy and upgrade both devices to ProEdition firmware.
MICROBEAST PLUS from ALIGN
MICROBEAST PLUS devices included in ALIGN T-Rex kits come with Firmware Version 4.x.x or 5.x.x BASIC. You can upgrade/update/register and use these devices just like any other MICROBEAST PLUS. Only difference is that these devices are carrying the ALIGN logo on the housing.
Can I use MICROBEAST PLUS with a gasser heli, especially with RPM Governor and AttitudeControl?
We did do several tests with gas powered helis and we do not see any restriction on this. Gas motors produce very low frequent vibrations which normally can be filtered by the gyro sensors very well. So you should be able to fly with MICROBEAST PLUS and use AttitudeControl without issues on gasser helis. Also the RPM Governor function can be used with gas motors. Only restriction is that a rpm sensor with digital sensor output (PWM) must be used for proper function. Analog sensors like the Futaba GV1 magnet sensor or StatorGator which are often installed on gasser helis can't be used.
Is it possible to connect 4 swash plate servos to MICROBEAST / MICROBEAST PLUS?
Firmware Version 4.x.x and lower: No, 3 swashplate servos only.
Firmware Version 5.x.x: Yes, you can use up to 4 swash servos when using a single line receiver, i.e. for large scale helicopters. In this case we recommend to connect the servo outputs to a separate power distribution system. The 4th servo (2nd elevator servo) is connected to CH7 output of the MICROBEAST PLUS (only signal out!). See manual for further informations.
Differences between firmware versions (changelog)
Here you can see what has changed from one version to the preceeding version.
- Tail gyro
- center rudder servo when heli is on gound by giving brief stick input "left-right-left-center"
- improved performance of governor in nitro and electric mode
- no throttle lock at full speed when headspeed does not increase fast enough in nitro mode
- use logging feature to get more insight what the governor actually does, i.e. it will tell you that chosen head speed is too high when head speed can't be reached or only can be reached at nearly maximum throttle
- AttitudeControl (stabilization) (PROEDITION only)
- when using Bank Switching and AttitudeControl with separate switch channel you can now do both, set fixed AttitudeGain in a bank or use the separate switch. So AttitudeControl is always active in this bank when the gain is set to greater than 12 by software. When it is set to 0, the separate switch will determine when AttitudeControl is on or off.
- in 3D - Mode you can enable/disable stabilization when the heli is in exact vertical position, so you may be able to practice maneuvers in which the heli is nearly upright more easily, i.e. funnels or hurricanes
- at SETUP POINT K (Pitch adjustment) you can see the actual thrust stick center position when the Status LED is off. You can use this to identify a little stick offset which may cause your pitch not being at 0 degrees when the stick seems to be in center position!
- added visualization when performing a factory reset
- increased Quick trim range
- using SRLX receivers the internal function assignment of MICROBEAST PLUS was not similar to the transmitter display/function assignment of the radio manufacturers, this has been changed so that Microbeast uses different assignments for each manufacturer. (Please note: due to this update you will have to do the radio setup and function assignments once again after the firmware update to version 5.1.2 when using a SRLX receiver)
- added data logging to be viewed in StudioXm and StudioX V3 (Note: log data is only temporary and will be erased when removing power from the device!)
- added possibility to perform factory reset by software
- Now you can use Boost Pitch also in 3D-Mode and Rescue Bailout mode without(!) pitch. So the heli will get a short lift when the heli is leveled but then you will regain pitch control immediately.
- Basic functionality
- now fully adjustable (Setup & Parameters) also with StudioX computer software or StudioXm mobile App; see manuals for further information
- added support for FlySky iBus and Jeti EXBUS serial line input data
- Spektrum/JR remote satellite can be directly connected to pin board of MICROBEAST PLUS (Spektrum Adapter not required anymore); see manual for further information
- added separate trim values for aileron, elevator, collective and rudder
- removed "User defined" presets instead you can directly edit a value with StudioX/StudioXm if necessary
- reworked adjustment in Receiver Menu:
- Receiver Menu Point A: automatic receiver type detection; see manual for further information
- Receiver Menu Point A: changed LED colors for receiver types and also changed receiver type naming; see manual for further information
- reworked adjustment in Setup Menu:
- in general values and presets are changed using the rudder stick; menu options (selecting servos, changing adjustment positions) are set with aileron; when directions are setup correctly, left stick decreases a value and right stick increases a value
- Setup Menu Point C (Rudder pulse width): swapped LED colors for 760µs and 960µs (now 760 = purple and 960 = red) so that the values are increasing in the given order from purple (lowest) to blue (highest)
- Setup Menu Point F (Gyro/Rudder direction): no need to check gyro direction by user anymore, instead teach the rudder direction to the system; see manual for further information
- swapped Setup Menu Points G and H (now H = Swash servo directions and G = Swash mixing)
- now supports up to 4 swashplate servos (when choosing 90° eCCPM swash mixing at Setup Point G and using a single wire receiver); 4th servo (2nd elevator) is connected to CH7 output
- Setup Menu Point J (Cyclic throw): measurement and neutral positions can be selected as often as you like now, so you can even check positions after the setup was finished; see manual for further information
- Setup Menu Point K (Collective pitch): no need to teach the stick end positions anymore, instead the user has to adjust the pitch range initially so the stick movement and range is shown correctly on the display; see manual for further information
- Setup Menu Point M (Cyclic directions): no need to check swash gyro compensation by user anymore, instead teach the stick directions to the system; see manual for further information
- reworked settings in Parameter Menu:
- Parameter Menu Point A (Quick trim): added collective trim and rudder trim can be done with rudder stick now; see manual for further information
- Parameter Menu Point L (AttitudeControl Mode): swapped LED colors for different modes (now purple = Angular mode, red = Bailout rescue, blue = 3D - Mode)
- throttle failsafe indicator (only when using Single line receiver): when throttle is higher than failsafe position and failsafe engages during power up, the system will lock throttle after initialization and the Status LED will flash red/blue!
- reworked adjustment in Governor Menu:
- Governor Menu Point D: swapped LED colors for displaying Autorotation and Governor at maximum speed (now purple = Autorotation, blue = Governor at maximum speed)
- Internal RPM Governor
- increased range for electric governor to be used with SAB Goblin Fireball: Maximum headspeed now 5000rpm
- added new feature "Bank switching" (can be enabled with StudioX/StudioXm only) which allows to set parameters for three flight conditions; when used gain adjustment using the dials and gyro gain adjustment with the radio are disabled, instead the gains and parameters are all set with StudioX/StudioXm; see manual for further information
- Rescue Boost allows to give additional collective pitch for a given amount of time when activating rescue bail out or 3D - Mode (with or without pitch control)
- 3D - Mode no does not engage when the helicopter is in upright vertical position which gives a better control when training 3D maneuvers while 3D - Mode is active
- added FFT tab to show frequency spektrum of the sensor input to visualize vibrations, especially interesting when planning to use the AttitudeControl; see StudioX manual for further information
- added event logging function to better understand what the system is doing during operation and to give more information for support team
MICROBEAST and TSA Trajectory
- Supports Graupner HOTT SUMD serial line signal (SRXL HOTT)
- Improved receiver channel initialization
- Improved tail gyro algorithm for Normal-Rate mode
My MICROBEAST / MICROBEAST PLUS is defective, where can I send it?
When you have an ALIGN branded device you could ask your ALIGN dealer for service or replacement. Other than that please ask your local BEASTX distributor for your country. Usually the distributors will replace your device, collect some more defective devices and then get new devices from us in exchange. Another option is to send the device directly to our service center in Germany, but when living outside Europe this can take a long time, as the parcels usually go to customs authorities first. When sending to the service center use this RMA form, you will also find the shipping address there.