DJI Ronin-M Pan / Roll Drift and Firmware / IMU Upgrade Failure at DVinfo.net

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Old October 5th, 2015, 06:57 AM   #1
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DJI Ronin-M Pan / Roll Drift and Firmware / IMU Upgrade Failure

I recently purchased a DJI Ronin-M and wanted to share my experience so far in case anyone else runs into the same issues.

Out of the box, I had a misconception on how to balance it. I thought you just balance it so the camera faces forward, rather than that it would stay in one place no matter which way the camera faces in the gimbal, so I had some issues there. My first shoot was frustrating due to this.

Then I started having an issue where the roll axis would slowly drift to the right so the shot would become crooked. I've seen a lot of complaints about this online with varying answers.

I contacted support, which so far has been 100% useless. Then I talked to the CineMilled guys and they suggested a firmware update.

That made sense so I started working on that. I was able to find the download for new firmware on DJI's website, downloaded it, connected my Ronin-M with the USB cable that came with the unit, and everything connected. However when I ran the firmware update for the IMU, it crashed and I got an error message "IMU Update Failed".

I tried about 20 times, got nothing. At this point the Ronin-M was completely unresponsive to the app, but also wouldn't respond to being powered up - the motors wouldn't engage at all. I was afraid I had bricked it.

I have seen some people have shipped their Ronin-M's back at this point. I think it's because the support staff at DJI are so bad that they don't know what to tell people to do. DJI, this is a huge weakness in your company structure right now!!!

Here is what I found: I was trying to run the update on a Mac. Somehow it's buggy, and it's not just me because I've seen many posts about this in various places. I have an old PC in my studio so I downloaded the firmware update there and ran it on that computer, and it worked fine the first time. I used my Ronin-M on a shoot yesterday again, and did not have the roll drift problem.

I do have a new issue I need to figure out - my footage felt more jerky and less smooth than previously. So I'm on to a new challenge, and I hope that by trying to fix that I don't go back to having a roll problem - I'm hoping those aren't related. However, it's not bricked after all so I feel like there's still some hope of getting my $$ out of this gear. It's a great concept, it just feels like they've pushed it out to the masses a little bit early.
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Old October 5th, 2015, 07:15 AM   #2
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Re: DJI Ronin-M Pan / Roll Drift and Firmware / IMU Upgrade Failure

Thanks for this Philip. I've been thinking about buying a Ronin M (or some other gimbal options) for the new Sony FS5 that I have on order. So it is always good to hear (good and bad) experiences about a particular company before one buys, especially if it's from fellow forum members.

As an aside, here is a film of that combo posted by someone in Italy yesterday.

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Old October 5th, 2015, 08:09 AM   #3
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Re: DJI Ronin-M Pan / Roll Drift and Firmware / IMU Upgrade Failure

Cool! When it works it's really a great tool. I'm getting there. I just don't like the feeling of bring a piece of gear to a shoot and not being sure it's reliable.

I did get some cool classroom shots in the film I just posted here: Shrink Karen's Leg! - Short Documentary
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Old October 5th, 2015, 09:22 AM   #4
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Re: DJI Ronin-M Pan / Roll Drift and Firmware / IMU Upgrade Failure

The link I posted was a great, quick demo film - and showed the FS5 and Ronin M's capabilities pretty well - but unfortunately he seems to have changed it to a private video in the last hour or so.
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Old September 12th, 2016, 01:23 PM   #5
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Re: DJI Ronin-M Pan / Roll Drift and Firmware / IMU Upgrade Failure

Good heads up info on this post/string. I just rented the Ronin M last weekend to test it out during marching band practices with my C100. It is not a plug and play device but that is what I've read so I knew what to expect for set up. My biggest problem was the DJI Assistant on my iPhone. It would not search and find the Ronin the second time after shutting down. I had to re-load the app every time so it would search and find the device.

My experience with DJI customer service was the same, they need some help to improve their customer service. When I returned the kit to the rental store I discovered I was not shutting down the DJI app on my phone correctly, apparently I have never been shutting down my app correctly. This seemed to fix my issue with the app not searching and connecting the second time because it worked fine in the rental store after I returned it. Would have been nice to discover this before the shoot.

I still would like to buy the Ronin M because I managed to get a working setup with my C100, wireless lav mic, and a 5" Marschell monitor. The stabilized footage is way better then my Frankenstein walking style could ever produce.

Thanks, KPO.
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