There are up to 72 FPV channels in the 5.8GHz analogue system. This article contains tables and charts to enable you to look up the specific frequency for each channel and band to ensure the best possible video signal from your rig.
Table of Content
- 5.8GHz FPV Channels Table
- Best Practice
- The Original Four Bands A, B, E, F
- Diatone Band
- Four New Bands
- Not All Channels are Legal!
5.8Ghz Channels and Frequency for FPV
Each band has a unique set of frequencies, individual frequencies can be repeated on other bands but the sets remain unique.
Channels in the same band are set apart by a constant frequency, it could be 20Mhz, 19Mhz, 37Mhz, 23Mhz, 18Mhz or 40Mhz.
|Band||CH 1||CH 2||CH 3||CH 4||CH 5||CH 6||CH 7||CH 8|
There are as many as 72 possible channels over which a VTX can transmit video. Sadly however, this doesn’t mean that we can have 72 craft flying together, all streaming video over 5.8Ghz simultaneously, but that would be awesome, wouldn’t it?
Brands and the Battle of the Bands
In the “old days”, video transmitters only supported 8 channels. Different brands used different bands for their VTX’s. Nowadays, most VTX’s work with multiple bands, if not all of them.
- Band A: Team BlackSheep (TBS), RangeVideo, SpyHawk, FlyCamOne USA
- Band B: FlyCamOne Europe
- Band C (R): Raceband
- Band E: HobbyKing, Foxtech
- Band F (Airwave): ImmersionRC, Iftron
- Band D: Diatone
- Band L: Low band
- Band H: High band
Tips and Best Practice
You must ensure your 5.8GHz Video Transmitter (VTX) and the video receiver are operating on the same channel in order to establish a reliable video link. Some channels are very close to others on different bands, just because you are getting a picture, it doesn’t mean you are on the right channel.
Getting the best VTX is important, but remember that the type of antenna you use, and even where/how you place it on your craft, can be just as important when it comes to receiving a good quality video feed. Here is my guide on choosing the best FPV antenna.
It is good practice to test your FPV setup before installing it in your craft, not only to confirm everything is working – but also because it can be difficult to access the buttons on the VTX once it is in the stack. We strongly advise you however, to structure your build so you CAN change your VTX settings. (This may not be so crucial if you are using Smart Audio or TRAMP – find out more about Smart VTX Control here.)
Be aware that many VTX have a different operating voltage, a small VTX for a TinyWhoop will likely have a 3.3v – 4.2v max, where some have a wide operating voltage ranging from 7.4v – 24v, in some cases even offering a filtered and regulated 5v output.
It is uncommon, but you may occasionally experience atmospheric interference, to combat this try using Band E Channel 4, followed by Band E Channel 8, or another combination that offers a wide gap between frequencies. Some interference might be power related, see here for a more detailed article on fixing FPV video issues
You may also need to change your channel when flying with other pilots, in order to avoid interference from one another. Remember to be considerate to other pilots, find out what VTX channels are being used before you power on your craft. It can be hard to make friends at a flying field when the best pilot there has lost his best racing drone, because you jumped on his video channel! This article explains which are the best channels to use for FPV
Conflicts with WiFi
5.8GHz WiFi signal uses frequency between 5170MHz – 5835MHz, this could interfere with our FPV signal. You might experience noisy or loss of signal when flying near populated residential and business areas, where there is commonly WiFi signals around.
It’s best to use a channel as far away from this band as possible, for example Raceband 8 (5917MHz) is a good option.
In fact, your WiFi can be affected by VTX too, if your home WiFi drops out while you are working on your quad, it’s likely to be caused by the VTX. If this happens, simply move your channel to a higher frequency :)
The Beginning – 4 Bands 32 Channels
Way back when this article was first created, life was simple. There were only 4 bands, and some VTX and VRX could only support one single band offering 8 channels, making it vital that the VTX and VRX are compatible (used the same band).
Jan 2016 – Raceband Added
Raceband Frequencies: 5658, 5695, 5732, 5769, 5806, 5843, 5880, 5917 (in MHz).
Raceband was set up with racing events in mind. The channels are equally spaced out in frequency (38MHz apart) and in the ideal conditions, it should theoretically allow all 8 channels to be used simultaneously.
Part of the RaceBand idea was to be in compliance with regulations. The allowable range for ITU region 2 (US) is 5.650-5.925 GHz which is why RaceBand starts at 5.658GHz and ends at 5.917GHz. If you add, or subtract the 8MHz video bandwidth you’ll arrive at the legal limits for the band.
Feb 2017 – New 6th Band
A new band was used by Diatone, starting with 5362Mhz, ending with 5621MHz.
Apr 2017 – 4 New Bands Added
Here we have 4 new bands introduced by the VTX03 from Eachine. This takes us to a total of 9 bands, 72 channels available in the 5.8Ghz frequency for FPV. These new channels are frequencies that we didn’t previously use for FPV.
- L – Low Band
- H – High Band
Not All the 5.8Ghz Channels are Legal!
Although there are many frequency options and power outputs available from VTX these days, you should find out your local restrictions before going flying. Many places restrict 5.8GHz output power to 25mW unless the user has a license.
Note – some VTX require you to follow a procedure that will unlock the higher output power options.
Bands of “L”, “U” and “O” fall entirely outside the legal frequency allocation, making them illegal to use in the US (and possibly many other countries), that’s why you won’t see VTX with these channels when you buy from legit RC shops.
Not to mention these bands are much lower than 5.8Ghz and your antennas are probably not tuned for that low frequency.
My advice is to stay away from VTX’s that offer these illegal frequencies. A VTX that has 48 channels is more than enough.
- Jan 2015 – Article created
- Dec 2019 – Updated, added “best practice”