TBS Discovery


TBSMy TBS Discovery

Well, it took about a good month to get my TBS Discovery working, but it’s worth it.
It is my first drone (quadcopter) and perhaps will be the only, Definitely not.

TBS Discovery weight.

The TBS Discovery has an all up weight:1.85Kg but this all depends on the features you add to it.

Here is the build:

  • TBS Style Reptile 500 3K Carbon Fiber Quadcopter Multicopter Frame Kit FPV
  • 4 x 4X AGM MT2216 810KV Outrunner Motor. 2 x CW, 2 x CCW
  • 4 x 30A Brushless ESC SimonK
  • APM 2.8 Flight Controller
  • Power Module XT-60 type
  • 3DR radio 433Mhz Data Transmission Module
  • MinimOSD
  • SJ4000 Camera
  • 5.8ghz Transmitter
  • FrSky V8FR-II 8-channel Receiver

TBS Discovery feedback about the design:

Its a great design and a well thought out layout. It flies extremely stable and forgiven I feel it needs a better undercarriage, as the ones on the legs are not great and do not given enough clearance, on take off and landing.
Also, would have liked to seen better options for a gimbal but this design floor has been overcome with my gimbal extension.

What would I have done differently?

I would have moved the 2 back arms further back and perhaps used the same angle that is used up front. This would have had two major positive impacts.
1- it would enable the possibility to use 11inch props further increasing efficiency and max output power.
2- it would have shifted the center of gravity to the center of the front and back props, because at the moment it is shifted towards the back, loading the back motors more, and causing when falling some oscillations, and when rising lower than maximum output power.
Option two, to this floor, would be to put the extended arms onto the TBS discovery allowing larger props.

Besides that, I really like the overall concept.

Now what I have done in my quad. First of all, I used 5.8GHz video transmitter, to avoid all interferences of neighbors WLANs and other 2.4GHz radio systems if flying with others… True range is better with 2.4GHz, but with tracking, 5.8GHz is well within the operating range of the quad.

However, I shifted the antenna rather high for 2 reasons:
1- 5.8GHz @ 600mW can cause a lot of interference on the long wires going around.
2- to avoid reflections and reduce the impact of the Quad on signal quality.
You loose in transportability, but gain a lot in video performance. I also use an antenna tracker for longer range missions, but with just goggles, I reach about 300-500m flying very low. With a 13dB flat panel RHCP, I still have reached the limits… I expect some 3-5km.


Lens: I changed to a 2.8mm lens to have a little more FOV than a 3.6mm.
GOPRO: I don’t have a GOPRO as they are expensive and can get damage on Drones so went for the cheaper option of an SJ4000 the TBS Discovery doesn’t cater for a gimbal but I have designed and 3d printed a gimbal mount for it.

Battery: turnigy 5000mAh 15C, it fits like a glove and give 4000mAh effective capacity and weighs only 475g. At so point, I may fit a helicopter undercarriage that will give me clearance to carry a second battery for longer flight times.

Motors: I used AGM MT2216 810KV Outrunner Motor since at the time I ordering these were cheap and had good reviews I haven’t had a problem with them and not looking to upgrade them until they show signs of failing.

Top speed: 45mph

I used MiniOSD… yeah yeah I know what you all think, but I find it works reliably and has good support. It was a little tricky to get is working on this board, but not too complicated.

Total Battery time: I achieved 13-14min in this configuration.

Props: 10×4.5 if I extend the arms a may go with a larger prop.


All in all, I am very happy with it and the AMP controller which works very well in combination. I especially like the GPS mode if you are a beginner and for certain video captures.
I would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to make nice vids without props in view. it could have been a little bit more external OSD friendly, and center of gravity shifted more to center. I’m still working on the vibs, but once they are under control then the video can be captured at 1080p. However when at high speed, then you need to reduce the gain to reduce oscillations and get rid of jello effect.
But its compact and versatile, with great potential for making awesome vids.

My TBS Discovery Upgrades.