You can buy the DJI Avata on its own or as part of a combo with a Remote Controller and Goggles, but not a usual FPV Cinewhoop Controller with joysticks.
The Motion Controller is a new alternative, but how do you use it?
The DJI Avata Motion Controller is very intuitive to use. Hold it in your hand, press the accelerator, and rotate your arm to turn the Avata while it flies forward. Move your arm up and down to make it fly upward and downward.
If the Motion Controller sounds easy to use, that’s because it is. Still, we advise you to read this article.
We’ll explain how to use the Motion Controller in detail, including what you can expect from it and the best scenarios to use it.
To help, we’ve identified and reviewed the best drone courses for beginners and professionals.
How to use the DJI Avata Motion Controller: Step-by-step
The idea behind this controller is to eliminate the need to use pitch, roll, and yaw sticks. Instead, you use your arm’s natural motion to perform these movements.
Another differential aspect compared to a regular drone controller is the throttle. The Motion Controller has a trigger to help you accelerate the Avata.
As you have read, this controller differs from others you may have used to fly a drone. Therefore, let’s explain how it works.
Taking off with the Motion Controller
Before checking other movements, hover your Avata at a certain altitude.
To take off, follow the steps below:
- Place your Avata on a flat, dry area free of Foreign Object Debris or FOD.
- Pair the Avata, Motion Controller, and Goggles.
- Press the red Lock button twice with your thumb to start the engines.
- Press the red Lock button to take off.
- The Avata automatically hovers at approximately 6.6 feet.
Pitching with the Motion Controller
Now that your Avata hovers at a fixed altitude, you can move with the Motion Controller.
Here’s how to use the pitch:
- By raising your arm, you tilt the Motion Controller up. This motion makes the Avata pitch up.
- By lowering your arm, you tilt the Motion Controller down. This arm motion makes the Avata pitch down.
You will notice a slight pitch angle, but it’s not aggressive at all. The Avata automatically recovers from that angle and stabilizes the drone in a 0-degree neutral position.
Yawing with the Motion Controller
This movement is the most notorious.
- By rotating your arm clockwise while holding the Motion Controller, the Avata yaws to the right.
- By rotating your arm counterclockwise while holding the Motion Controller, the Avata yaws to the left.
If you kept your arm rotated clockwise, the Avata continues to spin to the right until you return your arm to a neutral position.
It works the same counterclockwise.
Rolling with the Motion Controller
Of the basic movements, this is the one you can’t achieve with this controller when the aircraft is hovering.
You need to fly forward first.
Flying forward is the easiest movement to perform.
- By pressing the accelerator trigger with your index finger, the Avata flies forward.
When you press the accelerator, the Avata pitches down a bit. That way, the Avata can go forward holding its altitude.
You can accelerate or decelerate your Avata by playing with the trigger travel.
When holding down the accelerator to its max position, your Avata will fly the fastest it can. By relieving the trigger, the Avata will slow down.
If you release the trigger, the Avata immediately stops and hovers at the altitude you were flying.
Rotating with the Motion Controller
Now that you understand how to fly forward with Avata, it’s time to rotate it to the sides and up or down.
To rotate the Avata to the right, press the accelerator and rotate your arm clockwise simultaneously. This makes the Avata turn to the right, as it combines the yaw and roll movement.
To go forward and up or down works the same way. You only need to press the accelerator and raise or lower your hand.
These movements won’t be aggressive, but we advise you to avoid full acceleration while you get comfortable with the motion.
Flying up and down vertically with the Motion Controller
Another interesting movement is going up or down vertically with the Avata. This is easily achievable with a joystick controller by moving the throttle stick up or down.
However, the Motion Controller works differently.
You need to raise your hand until the navigation circle in the Goggles pairs with the ascend icon. The Avata starts to climb at a controlled speed vertically.
To descend, lower your hand until the navigation circle in the Goggles pairs with the ascend icon.
Please avoid pressing the accelerator trigger while achieving this maneuver, or your Avata will start to go forward too. If this happens, only release the accelerator.
Stopping and RTH with the Motion Controller
Let’s say you want to keep your Avata hovering at a fixed position. No matter if you press the accelerator trigger or move your hands, you want it to stay still.
Then you should press the biggest button, the Brake button.
This Brake button allows you three functions.
- The Avata hovers in a fixed position by pressing the Brake button once. This mode is helpful, as it allows you to rest your hands while keeping the Avata safe in the air.
- To stop your Avata from flying forward suddenly, press the Brake button. If you think you will crash into a wall or obstacle, press it, and it will stop the Avata. That way, the Avata will hover in a fixed position.
- If you want to RTH, hold the Brake button until you hear a beep. To cancel RTH, press the Brake button.
Landing your Avata is very easy too.
- Ensure your Avata will land in a flat, dry region free of FOD.
- Hold down the red Lock button until the Motion Controller beeps.
- The Avata will start a controlled descent and will shut down the engines once it touches the ground.
What can you expect from the Motion Controller?
At this time, the Motion Controller lacks a Manual Mode. You won’t be able to do flips, rolls, or extreme maneuvers like a dive.
However, you can still have fun in the available modes, which you can quickly access by pressing the black Mode button.
That button is below the red Lock button.
In Normal Mode, you have full stability aids. Your Avata will always maintain its altitude. It also achieves a max speed of 18 MPH, which is slow for intermediate to pro users but perfect for beginners.
Consider that your Avata will accelerate and turn and go up or down very slowly. The idea is to maintain a safe flight, giving you more time to make decisions.
If you want more adrenaline, switch to Sport Mode.
Here, you can fly at almost twice the Normal Mode speed and make aggressive movements. You can zigzag and go up and down at up to 31 MPH, which is exciting even for experienced FPV pilots.
Rest assured that your Avata won’t flip or fall, as this mode also comes with the self-stability feature.
When to use the Motion Controller
This controller fits any hand perfectly. All buttons are in the right place, easy to reach, and comfortable to press.
The Motion Controller is ideal for recording impressive cinematics.
It’s so easy to start or pause a video recording or take shots with your thumb effortlessly. Press the grey button with a red dot, and you will start recording videos up to an impressive 4K@30.
Hold down that same Record/Shutter button for two seconds to toggle between Record and Shutter modes. Then start taking 4K photos by pressing the same button.
You can even tilt the gimbal if you need a better camera angle. With the grey Gimbal Tilt Slider located above the Record/Shutter button, you can move the camera up or down.
Just remember, this function is only available before taking off or during RTH and landing.