In our recent introduction to first-person view (FPV) drones, we went over the basics of FPV flying. Specifically, we focused on aircraft requirements, necessary equipment, and FPV use cases. Now, we’d like to expand upon that primer with a glossary of terms and abbreviations commonly associated with FPV drones. Knowing these terms, and understanding why they are important, will benefit you if and when you decide to become an FPV drone pilot.
Acro: Short for acrobatic. When a drone is in acro mode, the pilot has total control over its angular velocity of rotation. In other words: It’s all up to you. The drone will not self-level automatically. It will not “fight” stick input. You can fly the drone however you like, including making it perform loops, rolls, and other acrobatic maneuvers. Acro mode is also commonly known as manual and rate mode.
Air Frame: The air frame (or simply frame) is the body of your drone. Think of it as your drone’s skeleton. It’s where all your FPV system components (camera, props, motors, boards, etc.) are housed.
Band: FPV drones transmit video over certain frequencies (or channels). These channels are split into specific groups called bands (Band A, Band B, etc.). Each band has eight specific channels, each with its own unique frequency.
Bando: An abandoned building or structure suitable for FPV operations. Knowing what a bando is doesn’t necessarily enhance your technical knowledge or ability, but it’s fun to say and will definitely make it sound like you know what you’re talking about.