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UPDATE (1/26/2012 2:56 pm Pacific: Kickstarter funding for the eye3 project was canceled by the project creator.

UPDATE: Since posting this, I’ve received a number of emails about this Kickstarter project and Lumenlab, the company behind it. Some people have complained that they have placed large orders for Lumenlab kits but have not received them. Before giving money to this Kickstarter campaign, I suggest that you visit the following web pages and read them carefully:

Lumen Labs Forum

MicRo-CNC Yahoo Group/<

Eye3 topic on DIY Drones

Eye3 Comments on Kickstarter

I’ve also asked Grayson and Kellie Sigler to respond to these concerns.

If you have already made a pledge to the eye3 project and want to cancel it, here is Kickstarter’s explanation of how to cancel a pledge.

—–

This looks cool — a flying robotic camera platform called the eye3. It’s on Kickstarter and is being developed by Kellie and Grayson Sigler.

eye3 is a project to create a professional quality yet affordable flying robotic camera platform, or Drone. Almost anyone attempting to build a platform like the eye3 will be stunned by the complexity involved and the years of hands on experience needed to create a functional, safe device. The incredibly steep learning curve combined with the high cost of failure has kept this powerful tool out of the hands of thousands of creative people.

We Can Make Aerial Photography Easy for You

My husband and I have been building, programming and flying these complex machines for many years, giving us the knowledge and experience to produce a high performance flying robot in a low cost kit that practically anyone can assemble. Cinematographers, journalists, scientists, hobbyists: eye3 has the power, stability, automation and precision you need to produce professional results.

Mark Frauenfelder

Mark Frauenfelder is the editor-in-chief of Make magazine, and the founder of the popular Boing Boing blog.


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Comments

  1. Tien Gow says:

    Looks cool, but what is the advantage over the $300 AR.Drone Parrot, which includes cameras?

    1. rocketguy1701 says:

      This is a more industrial strength solution. The parrot is basically a very sophisticated toy, not nearly as powerful as this platform.

  2. Sam says:

    With LumenLab on the rocks I’d be nervous about giving them any $$ some orders have been outstanding for >6 months.

    1. Brainchild says:

      Lumenlab is not on the rocks, just me – I’ve been sick as hell for months (wah). 5000 tests later it still seems that I have Lupus. Kellie and I have spent 4 years on this project. Everything is set up to produce the parts overseas – which means we can deliver whether I live or not. I’ve begged Kellie to come out with this; it was finished when I started peeing blood. For anyone who believes this is some toy, try it your way.

      1. Slick says:

        So am I to understand your shipping M3 kits?

      2. Chris says:

        is there a possibility to refund the M3 I’ve paid for? please communicate on the lumenlab forum! Sorry about crashing this page but it feels like one of the last resorts…

        1. jdelgoulet says:

          Same here. I’ve been waiting one year and still nothing. Also I fel a complain but the company who does this for me just contacted me as it seems Lumenlab address changed (or does not exists any more).

      3. Jeff says:

        Seems like a silly question at this point, but will any of us ever see the thousands of dollars you owe us all in refunds? Order #3414.

  3. rocketguy1701 says:

    I’d have to do some math, but it seems a bit overpriced for something that is basically a very nice ArduCopter. I’m also not thrilled about how they seem to be taking a bit more credit than is proper, given that they’re standing on the shoulders of the APM2 platform, and the diydrones community. Maybe it’s just the total lack of any mention of where the APM2 came from etc.

    That said, the frame looks pretty nice. Maybe they’ll expand on it over the weekend and lay my concerns to rest. A BOM would be a good start, along with attribution…

    1. I’ve sent a query asked them those exact questions rocketguy. We’ll see what they say.

    2. They didn’t design the frame either. It’s just an Xaircraft X6 frame that costs $160:
      http://www.foxtechfpv.com/xaircraft-cf-diy-x6-frame-p-400.html

      So that’s the APM 2, which they’re buying from 3D Robotics for $199 and the frame they’re buying for $160. How they get from that to the $1,499 they’re charging for putting it together is not clear.

      Given that every part of this is already commercially available, this doesn’t seem like it fits into the spirit of Kickstarter.

      1. rocketguy1701 says:

        Well, there’s the six motors and esc’s, but yeah, seems like they’re trying to do the “value added integrator” bit for a hefty chunk of change. Might be worth it for some, but I’m still quite off-put by the lack of transparency and attribution.

  4. luis says:

    This is not so affordable….should have a diff option for txrx that adds an extra $1000. It’s nice that it’s ready to fly, but $2500 is a pretty penny. Maybe I’d they get funding the price will come down, but it’s not that usual…

    1. david says:

      Luis, you dont gave to get their tx/rx and can use your own if u have that gear already…

  5. david says:

    I think this is an insanely awesome setup. Its the only one i’ve seen with a payload that high, Which changes it from a toyish device to something useful well beyond just photography. I could forsee personally outfitting it with multiple mini hd head-cams for some truly insane multi-perspective footage.

    1. multi-flyer says:

      It would be great to get some duration vs. payload numbers. Many multicopters make some very nice claims for flight times, however that can be cut in half, or quarter, or even less when payload becomes “moderate”.

  6. Milo says:

    What a rip off. This is an obvious scam. They are using screen captures from DYI Drones and the new DJI frame. The crooks have nothing and are just reseling other peoples work. The flight numbers are proof they don’t know what they are talking about and have clearly never flown a multicopter. I am disappointed that Kickstarter would support such a con.

  7. Greg says:

    This is outrageous. DIYDrones hardware and software, Xaircraft frame. No credit to the developers. Profiting off of the hard work of other people. Maybe if they assembled and tested first, but they don’t even do that. They purchase the parts, mark up the price, and resell to suckers. I tried to report the project on Kickstarter but it’s a form, you can’t explain the reason for the report. This project needs to get pulled ASAP.

    1. SM says:

      +1

      http://lumenlab.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=31263&st=50

      Kickstarter were contacted by an acquaintance basically said not our problem.

    2. DJ says:

      Uhh, they provide additional components, and support after the sale (spares, warranty support, etc), vs the DI approach where you’re completely ON YOUR OWN, People fail to see the DIY approach has a LOT of hidden costs. (cost of crashes, time spent learning,debugging, etc). a turnkey solution did all the hard work FOR YOU. If it costs too much, go buy some other drone platform, or make your own, and learn how much time and expense it is to get that “winning combination”.

      1. Daniel says:

        Bwahhhh ha ha they can’t even take care of the Lumenlab web sight!
        Support after the fact keep dreaming..
        lumenlab Yep will take your money we will ship your stuff in 6 weeks!
        Ok cool
        Few months later
        Ummm Hello whats up with my machine any new news :)
        Errrr no response hummm
        Few months later
        Hay I need to know whats going on
        No response
        Few weeks of sending emails every day and getting vary frustrated
        You get a response
        Hay I’m so sorry I got sick, broke my arm, got abducted by squirrel aliens from Alabama
        Just a few more months and we’ll get it right to you!

        If you look into it the same cycle happens every year

        Sorry for the rant
        But I just want to warn people
        I wish Make would look more into the people they support!
        It put me into a nightmare

        Buyer beware

  8. Binka says:

    My husband’s experience with Lumenlab’s was similar to Daniel’s, above (I hadn’t heard about the squirrel aliens, though!) He placed a large order with them in January 2010, and he has received nothing from them now over a year later. I don’t believe he’s even gotten an email apologizing to him for the inadvertent loan/donation that we’ve made to this family business’ recovery fund. While this project does sound cool, we who have already given them money for their earlier products would like them to make good on the trust we’ve placed in them. And it’s a bummer because the time my husband spends trying to get in touch with Kellie, Grayson, and their colleagues is time he could spend making more stuff!

  9. Bob says:

    The project creator did not end the funding, Kickstarter did – http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/eye3/eye3/posts

    “Hey Everyone,

    Kickstarter ended this project. We don’t really know why. They haven’t contacted us with any reason…. or any info at all aside from that it has been canceled.

    We will still complete the project on our own. We’ve been really amazed by the amount of support you all have shown. If you are interested in getting updates you can join our email list here: http://eye3.be

    Forums, videos etc coming soon on our site.”

  10. Paul Temple says:

    (Sorry, links got messed up. Let me try again)

    This eye3 project by Grayson and Kellie Sigler is clearly a scam.

    The first photo at the start of their video:
    http://www.geeky-gadgets.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Eye3.jpg
    is actually not their product.

    Compare it to this photo:
    http://www.cnchelicopter.com/01202011/v4v8/12112011_v4H6_600_3.jpg
    (from this page:
    http://www.cnchelicopter.com/servlet/the-2122/Xaircraft-Hexa-Frame-carbon/Detail
    )

    If you look carefully you can see that they have photoshop’ed out the “www.cnchelicoptor.com” and put in their own logo “eye3″.
    In particular, look at the leg where the “www” was located,
    you can see some of their photoshop work where parts of
    the “www” is still visible.

    Now that their kickstarter project has failed they are trying
    to sell this product at their web site: http://eye3.be

    Be careful … based on their history I really would be careful
    about giving this couple any money.

  11. Robert Cook says:

    I’m Binka’s husband. I just posted to the Lumenlab forum to try to sum up a complex situation and why I think this needs to be resolved for the good of the Maker movement.

    http://lumenlab.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=31263&view=findpost&p=330525

  12. xmar says:

    I’m glad the project was cancelled. It will keep others from getting ripped off. This company stole nearly $3,000 of my hard earned money for a product that they never shipped but continued to say they had the parts in stock to clear their back order.

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