Getting Started

Mount and configure a PIX4D adapted RTK device - Trimble

 

To effectively use an Pix4D-adapted RTK device with a mobile device, the initial step is configuring the setup correctly. This involves setting the camera offset between the antenna and the mobile device's camera. This offset needs to be manually measured by the user, is crucial for accurately computing locations captured by Pix4D-adapted RTK devices, ensuring precise measurements for scans or ground control points (GCPs).

Mount the Pix4D-adapted Trimble RTK rover to the Device

The Pix4D-adapted Trimble is a GNSS RTK receiver that allows PIX4Dcatch to geolocate the images acquired by your mobile device with centimeter accuracy. The Pix4D-adapted Trimble RTK rover can be coupled with mobile phones (iOS) using the SP connectors (cases or clamps) provided by SP Connect.

Note: The SP connectors can be obtained when purchasing the Pix4D-adapted Trimble RTK rover. They can also be purchased directly from SP Connect and most electronic, bicycle, and motorcycle shops. Refer to the manufacturer's instructions for further details when mounting for the first time.
If the mobile device does not have a custom case available (e.g. Android phones), the universal clamp can be used.
 

Smartphone model

First, insert the phone into its compatible SP-connect case. Then, mount the case to the device by following the instructions provided with the SP-connect case.

Moto Mount Pro Handle

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If you prefer not to use the handle option described above, an alternative is to use a standard 30cm survey extension rod with the SP Connect Moto Mount Pro. The Moto Mount Pro is constructed from high-quality aluminum and as such is very rugged and stable. It can be purchased from your reseller or directly from SP Connect.

 

It is recommended that you adjust the Moto Mount Pro according to the following guidelines:

  • Align the top of the retaining ring 15 cm from the top of your extension rod, as shown below in the left image.
  • Orient the arm at 45 degrees with the phone mounting plate mounted vertically, as shown below in the right image.

By following these instructions, you ensure a secure and precise setup for your Trimble RTK device, facilitating accurate photogrammetry and geolocation results.

How to connect Trimble device to the app

To connect your Trimble device to Pix4Dcatch, follow these steps:

  1. Open Pix4Dcatch and navigate to RTK settings.Frame 2608566.png
  2. Select "Trimble" and choose "Connect to TMM (Trimble Mobile Manager)."iPhone 13 & 14 - 51.png
  3. Trimble Mobile Manager (TMM) will launch automatically.
  4. In TMM, establish a Bluetooth connection with your Trimble device.
  5. Once connected in TMM, return to the Pix4Dcatch app.
  6. Within Pix4Dcatch, start using your Trimble device for precise geotagging and image capture.

This process ensures seamless integration between your Trimble device, Trimble Mobile Manager, and Pix4Dcatch, enabling accurate positioning data for your photogrammetry workflows.

Note: If Trimble Mobile Manager (TMM) disconnects during use, restart TMM and re-establish the Bluetooth connection with your Trimble device to resume operations seamlessly.

 

How to Manually Measure the Camera Offset

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Mount the device to the Pix4D-adapted RTK devices using the appropriate SP-connect case. Phone cases can be purchased separately from the SP-connect website. The SP-connect universal phone mount can be used if the specific model is unavailable. SP-connect cases are also available in most bicycle and motorcycle shops.

Place the device in landscape mode and the display to the front. Notate the orientation of the X, Y, and Z axes and how they relate to the point of origin on the antenna to measure from. The point of origin resides in the middle of the screw mount at the base of the antenna. It will also be necessary to determine which lens to measure from for devices with multiple camera lenses.

Tip: If you don't know which camera lens to measure from, start PIX4Dcatch and then place something in front of each camera lens. The lens blocked is the appropriate lens to measure from.

Measure the X and Y axis

To measure the X-axis offset, simply measure the X-axis on the vertical axis from the base of the antenna to the point where it intersects the Y-axis. Then, measure the distance from the camera lens to the center of the antenna.

Measure the Z axis

Measure the depth from the center of the antenna to the center of the lens for the Z axis offset.

Enter the camera offset values

With the camera offsets properly measured and recorded, they can be included in the appropriate Camera Offset Values field of the RTK Device Settings dialog. Depending on the device's geographical region, centimeters or inches will be the displayed measurement unit.


The camera offset is now properly set in the Camera Offset Values X, Y, Z fields. Continue with the RTK Device Settings dialog to complete the Pix4D-adapted Trimble RTK connection to the device.