Here I explain how to flash/update BLHeli_S firmware on your ESC using Cleanflight FC Pass-through.
There are two ways to flash / connect BLHeli_S ESC: “one-wire” or pass-through. Pass-through is probably the more common method as it’s more convenient. Here I demonstrate how to update BLHeli_S firmware on the Aikon SEFM 30A ESC with FC pass-through.
There are two options,
- BLHeli Configurator: https://github.com/blheli-configurator/blheli-configurator/releases
- BLHeliSuite for BLHeli_S: https://github.com/bitdump/BLHeli (download link in the bottom “Read Me” section).
You can use either software to flash firmware and configure your ESC. Personally, I prefer BLHeli Configurator because the interface is more user friendly.
Note that there are two different BLHeliSuite depending on the type of ESC you have:
You should find out which firmware your ESC supports before proceeding, they are NOT cross-compatible. This guide explains the difference in these two firmware.
- First of all, make sure your FC is flashed with Betaflight in order to use the FC pass through feature
- Have your ESC signal and ground wires connected to the FC (motor output pins)
- Connect the FC to computer via USB cable, but do NOT connect to Betaflight GUI
- Power on the ESC with LiPo
How to use BLHeli Configurator
Select the COM port for your FC, and press the Connect button.
Once connected, you will get a blank page. You should now plug in the battery to the quad to power up the ESC. And press the button “Read Setup”.
You can now change your ESC configurations.
If you want to update firmware, simply press the button “Flash All”. You will be prompted to choose a firmware version. The type of ESC should be selected automatically, if not you can look it up in the previous screen (the name is in the title of each ESC)
BLHeliSuite for BLHeli_S
5. Under “Select Ateml / Silabs Interface” in the menu, choose “SILABS BLHeli Bootloader (Cleanflight)” to use FC Passthrough to program/flash your ESC’s
6. Select the correct COM port of your FC, and press “read setup”. If nothing shows up you might need to press “check” as well.
7. If you see “BLHeli_S Revision” number is below the latest version, then you need to update it. (The latest was 16.1 at the time)
8. Press “Flash BLHeli” and you will see a pop up window. firmware option should be filtered down to only 1 left, because it has BLHeli_S installed previously, and the system can detect what firmware this ESC needs
9. Select this firmware, and click OK to flash.
After it’s done, you should see the updated BLHeli_S revision number.
- 2016 Jun – Article created
- 2020 Jan – Added instructions for BLHeli Configurator