If you don’t know much about the upcoming Betaflight 4.3 official release, this post is for you. I will talk about the new features in Betaflight 4.3, which might make you interested to upgrade.
Update: The newer Betaflight 4.4 is here.
I’ve written a tuning guide for BF4.3 if you are not familiar with the new slider system in the PID tab.
Download The Latest Betaflight Configurator
You need the latest Configurator (10.8.0 or newer) to use Betaflight 4.3: https://github.com/betaflight/betaflight-configurator/releases
At the time of publishing (14 Feb 2022), 4.3 is still a release candidate (haven’t made it to stable release yet). To flash it to your flight controller, you need to select “Release and Release Candidate” in the Build types, otherwise you won’t see 4.3 in the firmware version.
Sliders for PID Tuning
In the new version, PID tuning can be done mostly using the 3 provided sliders. There are more sliders if you enable Expert Mode.
From what I understand, we are moving to a new era where PID tune could be done using just the sliders instead of entering numbers manually. This would make it so much simpler for all users.
Here you can load different rates, filters and other settings from other well known pilots’ quads. But before trying any presets, make sure you backup your own config first and read the description/instructions before applying.
VTX Table Presets
Using the presets tab, you can also load VTX tables. It will save you time from searching for it on the internet.
RC Link Presets
Also in Presets tab, you have RC link presets which are customized filtering settings for different radio control systems. This is optional, as the default settings would work just fine. But it’s hugely beneficial as it can optimize your RC link performance and improve latency without doing much, so why not? :)
Changing Motor Direction
You can now reverse the spin direction of a motor within Betaflight Configurator, no need to use BLHeli Suite for that anymore!
You can even remap the motor order easily using the graphical user interface. In the past you have to use resource remapping in CLI, it was tedious and too complicated for less technical users. The new GUI is just so easy and intuitive to use.
Auto-detect FC When Flashing Firmware
When you flash firmware to a flight controller, you had to goes through a long list and pick the correct FC board. If you flash the wrong firmware you could brick your flight controller.
Not anymore! Betaflight 4.3 can now automatically detect what flight controller you have. Just click the “Auto Detect” button and it will pick the right board for you.
Backing Up Made Easy
Backing up Betaflight settings cannot be easier in Betaflight 4.3.
In the Presets tab, you have the option to “Save backup”, it will save the settings in a text file. The result is basically like entering “diff all” in CLI, but it saves you from doing any copy and paste. To restore it, simply use the Load backup button.
This makes backing up your settings so much easier.
Binding SPI Receiver Made Easy
If your quad has one of those built-in RX (SPI receiver) on the flight controller, you no longer need to enter command in CLI to enter bind mode (not to mention the command often changes from version to version). Simply press the “Bind Receiver” button in the receiver tab.
Betaflight 4.3 Migration Tool
Many settings in CLI have changed in 4.3. If you are upgrading your quad to Betaflight 4.3 from an older version and doesn’t want to start from scratch, you can use this migration tool to convert your old CLI dump for safe import in 4.3. You can also choose what settings to keep or discard.
CPU % Too hight?!
In Betaflight 4.3, the devs have changed the scale of CPU %. Before the maximum we recommend people to run is about 50-60%, but now they have reduced the scale, and it would still be safe to run at 80-85% CPU load. Ways to reduce CPU load:
- Disable unused features
- Disable Accelerometer if not in used
- Lower PID Loop Frequency and use a slower DShot protocol (8K with DShot600, 4K with DShot300, 2K with DShot150)
Many Other Improvements
There are some other improvements and changes under the hood in Betaflight 4.3 that might not be obvious to the average users. If you are interested take a look at the release notes for more detail: https://github.com/betaflight/betaflight/releases