Gimbal up/down via joystick buttons

Posted this on the github issues for QGC before I found the forums.

I have a 2-axis BGC gimbal (old 8-bit version) that I would like to control from a gamepad/joystick. I have the gimbal’s RX_pitch pin connected to a Pixhawk AUX channel. The gimbal stays steady and I can mess with the angle limits in QGC to verify that the PWM outputs are in fact causing the gimbal’s pitch to change. Now can I get QGC to tell my Pixhawk to move the gimbal?

I have an Xbox One controller with buttons mapped to Gimbal Up and Gimbal Down and “Repeat” checked, but these buttons don’t seem to do anything when pressed (QGC shows me it is registering the button presses). My other button assignments (various modes, toggle arm) work fine.

I also tried enabling the experimental gimbal joystick feature to try to map one of the trigger axes to gimbal pitch, but the GUI for that appears glitched. The white dot representing the stick position is missing for pitch (stick 5) and for yaw it disappears if I move the trigger at all (stick 6). Plus those axes don’t come up in calibration. So I gather this is more of a feature placeholder than a feature experiment.

System Information

  • Operating System: macOS High Sierra
  • QGC Version: 4.0.10
  • QGC build: stable
  • Flight Controller: Pixhawk
  • Autopilot (with version): Arducopter 4.0.4rc

This is because ArduPilot doesn’t support the latest gimbal/camera MAVLink commands. These is detailed in this issue: ArduPilot/ardupilot#15098

Just to make sure: would this actually fix my issue, or would this only work if the gimbal were also MAVlink compatible, rather than controlled via PWM?

All depends on what the firmware supports. Both could be made to work.