When it comes to FPV, your goggles are the most important thing as they are the primary output for you to see through your drone. These things can be pretty expensive and that does not give you the surety that an expensive goggle will be the best incarnate.
In this article we will take you through all that you need to know about the FVP goggles and will make you into a FVP nerd because sometimes it is just worth it.
What are FPV Goggles?
So what is so special about these goggles? You can think of them as portable LCDs that you can wear on your face as goggles. Crazy right? You never know what technology is going to throw at you the next moment. Speaking honestly, if you are a fan of Star Trek, you are going to love this. It actually lets you be the commander of your quad copter by letting you teleport inside it. Now you know why captain Kirk and Spock had so much fun.
How do FPV goggles work?
It is really not a big deal to understand how it works. Think of it as a TV set. The goggles are your TV set and the copter is your transmission station. The copter transmits signals wirelessly and the receiver inside the goggles picks it up and displays it on your screen. Only this time it is happening on a much smaller scale.
There are primarily two types of form factors that you can choose for these goggles.
Low Profile Goggles
Low profile FVP goggles are used by most FVP lovers who are just starting out. These are small goggles which have a separate LCD for each eye. They also have a magnifying lens to change the focus and the size of the picture. Through this you can experience the big picture experience in a very small pair of goggles. FVP pilots love the small profile goggles because they are comfy and very light to wear.
Box goggles can be summarized as headsets which have a regular LCD screen in a box that prevents the light from getting in to have a seamless experience. These are much preferred in beginners as they are dirt cheap and are very low profile. You won’t even need any kind of IPD adjustment with these goggles so it makes them completely hassle free to use.
So what would it cost you? Well if you have this as a hobby then you can get a goggle for as less as thirty dollars. They will be pretty basic and will do the job just fine. But if you want to up your game a little bit then the top of the line goggles will cost you up to five hundred dollars.
Field of View (FOV)
So now we are getting a bit technical over here. But keep reading as it will save you money and time in the future. Field of view if put it simpler terms, means how much of the data is the LCD able to display on the screen. Consider a canvas of 5×5 ft on which you are allowed a maximum of 5×5 ft painting. You see a picture that is 10×10 and you have to reciprocate it exactly with that dimensions on a 5×5 canvas. How will you do it? You can’t. You can only draw a 5×5 portion of it. Now what if that canvas had adjustable length and you could unfold it to make it double, then you will be able to paint the whole of the picture to your canvas. Same goes with the field of view. The bigger the field of view, the larger area you will be able to see in your goggles.
FOV is measured in degrees. Typically a 70 degree FOV is best suited for most of the areas without having the need to move your head and without distorting the image too much.
Just like LCDs, FPV goggles have an aspect ratio of 4:3 or 16:9. As you may all know the 4:3 is used for a screen with an almost equal length and width. Which means that since the FVP goggles have a rectangular ratio with an uneven width and height, an output in 4:3 will be stretched providing you a distorted image. With the evolution of technology we have increasingly shift to 16:9 as it not only provides a better image but also covers larger area due to an increased width space of the screen
Interpupillary Distance (IPD)
IPD is the distance between your two eyes. Your eyes have to adjust to the focal point of the lens in order for you to see a clearer picture without blurring it. Thankfully some of the manufacturers provide adjustable IPD so you can bring the lenses in coherence with your eyes.
A normal IPD range is from 59-69mm. Most of the eyes should fit this standard and with adjustable IPD you can adjust it according to your eyes. The problem arises when you are out of this range (which basically means that you are an alien from another planet or a creature from an unknown civilization with your eyes either miles apart from or too close to each other, and captain Kirk has yet to find you). If this is the case I would recommend you to go with the box goggles with narrow FOV and broader focal length.
You should probably be aware of this term as you hear it all the time around you when you are talking about LEDs or Smartphone screens. Resolution is basically the amount of pixels a display is able to produce in a given area. The larger the screen the more resolution you are going to need to fill up that screen with pixels in a way that you cannot differentiate between the pixels and get a sharper image quality. The smaller the screen and the higher the resolution, the better the picture quality you will have. The larger the screen and the smaller the resolution the worse the quality will be. Now just because this is the rule does not mean that you have to buy the smallest possible screen with the largest possible resolution. There is a point where the difference becomes unnoticeable by our eyes. For example if you have a 3 inch screen then 720p is still overkill. Your eyes will not be able to see the difference at all between 480p and a 720p output on that small a screen