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2022 FPV Contest: ESP32-Powered FPV Car Uses Javascript For VR Magic

Showing the end result car, with mechanum wheels and a green chassis with what seems to be a camera window on top

You don’t always need much to build an FPV rig – especially if you’re willing to take advantage of the power of modern smartphones. [joe57005] is showing off his VR FPV build – a fully-printable small Mechanum wheels car chassis, equipped with an ESP32-CAM board serving a 720×720 stream through WiFi. The car uses regular 9g servos to drive each wheel, giving you omnidirectional movement wherever you want to go. An ESP32 CPU and a single low-res camera might not sound like much if you’re aiming for a VR view, and all the ESP32 does is stream the video feed over WebSockets – however, the simplicity is well-compensated for on the frontend.

The software stack, served as client-side JavaScript by the ESP32, is what makes this elegant build shine. [joe57005] uses Samsung Gear VR for the projects, a cheap but decent-quality “smartphone holder” VR headset. The ESP32’s camera feed is converted into a faux 3D VR image inside the smartphone’s web browser, using the technology called WebXR , with image de-warping using WebGL, and vanilla JavaScript straightforward touch controls for the HUD. All is open-source and public, and 3D printing files are soon to come to Printables – for now, we get the FreeCad source, which is more than good enough.

If you wanted a self-sufficient FPV platform you could play with, check this one out – it’s seriously accessible, software effort put in is worth learning from, and if you ever wanted to try WebXR, the code provided ought to be a nice playground. It reminds us of an another cute ESP32-driven FPV bot that we’ve seen a few years ago.

Got an FPV idea in mind? We’d like to see it, and we have a contest for that too! Don’t delay bringing it to life!

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