Multiwii and Megapirate AIO Flight Controller Review

by Oscar

What is the “Multiwii and Megapirate AIO Flight Controller”?

I have long wanted to have “return to home” and “way point” on my multicopters. Unfortunately many popular flight controllers that supports these great features are so expensive for most of us in this hobby, so I decided to go for a relatively cheaper solution, the Multiwii and Megapirate AIO flight controller.

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This is a flight controller sold by Hobbyking since 2012, and it has some of the most basic sensors built in: gyro, accelerometer, and magnetometer. You can also plug a GPS module to it to allow GPS related functionality. You can see more info, or buy it from this page.

I will just call this board “Megapirate AIO” in the rest of the post, since it’s easier and, I will be using MegapirateNG on it.

Why did I choose this board?

Simple, mostly because of the cost, and it’s available in the UK warehouse too. I could have gone for the Crius AIOP V2, but it would come from Hong Kong, which implies expensive shipping, custom charge and long waiting time.

Also, if you have been looking for flight controller that can do “way point” and “return to home”, you probably have heard of APM2 or Naza. This board can do exactly the same stuff. (in fact by flashing the MegapirateNG firmware on this board, it’s supposed to behave like the APM2, and the same client software can be used too.

Relationship with the Crius AIOP board

The Megapirate AIO is actually a clone of Crius AIOP flight controller, since the latter is an open source project. However when Hobbyking states its product to be “V2”, it’s only a “Crius AIOP V1.1” and not the  “Crius AIOP V2”.

After reading the specs, the differences in “Crius AIOP V1.1” and  “Crius AIOP V2” isn’t much. Firstly “Crius AIOP V2” added a datalogger chip. Secondly some additional pins of Atmega is now available to connect, the most useful pin is the LC1 pin which now can be used for CPPM instead of standard throttle pin, which is more effective.

For me these differences are not critical. Although Datalogging can be very handy when analysing flight data for debugging, personally I do not think I will ever use it. As for LC1 pin, again i don’t think i will need it. If I don’t I can just do some soldering work.

Problems with this board

Some people was complaining about the quality of this board when it first come out. I think it was mainly the voltage regulator that wasn’t soldered on probably. Find out more from this post. I did not find this issue on the board I received, maybe they have fixed it in later batches.

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Chris Cavill 15th February 2015 - 2:26 pm

Is it possible to use SBUS receivers with this board?

JongwoonHan 20th January 2015 - 5:59 am

Is it possible to get the data sheet of this board?

Andrew Ainsley 27th July 2015 - 8:03 pm

“Hi Oscar”

I’m having real problems getting this board to work. The motors seem to want to spool up when they want as long as the throttle is off minimum. They react to movement which I would expect but not how I would expect. I thought if it was flat all four should spool up simultaneously. This is not the case. I’m using a h frame and have used the megapirate flash tool to get the firmware on the board. The esc’s were calibrated all individually. No matter where I look there is no set way or explanation for this problem fix. I am not using gps and this is an fpv setup 250. I am using hitec aurora 9 and optima 7. On mission planner I have it set so the inputs are correct on the movements and I have changed from initially using helicopter setup to across plane. This hasn’t helped. I wanted to use this board as it has alt hold. Can you think of anything that I might have missed. I’m two steps from scrapping it and trying a different board.

Oscar 28th July 2015 - 5:28 pm

sorry i have very little experience in mission planner software, however there a few guys know better in our Facebook group “multicopter international” that might be able to help with your issue (link on the left hand side bar)