Cheapest and easiest way to reach multipoint telemetry?

I’m trying to get an overview of my options for building a setup where my two Matek FC powered quads can be controlled from a single GCS, meaning I want to have multipoint telemetry setup.
Options are considered from a perspective of cost and feasibility. Range is out of the question. Options:

  1. SiK Telemetry radios: +60$ per quad + one for GCS. Multipoint only available via some firmware that doesn’t seem to be a lot of support/community for (and also require mac or Ubuntu).

  2. RFD900x radios. ~250-350$ for a bundle. More documentation online than for the SiK radios though. Expensive though

  3. ELRS w. Airport FW: very cheap receivers ($15) for each quad + external module of 40$ . Don’t however know if it’s actually possible to have multipoint with ELRS

  4. Bluetooth: 10$ for each HC-06 Bluetooth module, which is very cheap. As with ELRS, I don’t know if it is possible to connect GCS to multiple quads w. bluetooth

  5. ESP8266 wifi module: 10$ for each module which is also very cheap. Looking guides up online, it seems fairly complex to set up though.

  6. XBEE radios: couldn’t find much on it. Lacking online guides. Doesn’t seem popular

Am I missing any options?

There’s also these: Microhard Telemetry Radio – Holybro Store

And the ESP32: ESP32 WiFi telemetry — Copter documentation

What is your range requirement? I ask this because Wi-Fi (ie the ESP8266/ESP32) is by far the cheapest way of doing this, but is quite range limited to a few 100 metres.


If ESP32 can act as UART to UDP converter it would be trivially easy to use it as a part of multipoint system though it would be star topology.

This doesn’t address your need for multi-point but if you are going to be using your quads in a relay configuration (for example one quad near by to relay data to another quad flying over a long distance or obstacle) you may be able to utilize the MAVLINK Routing functionality in Ardupilot to pass packets from, in the example above, your far quad through your closer quad.

Something like ESP telemetry between PC and relay then SiK between the quads might give you the bandwidth to communicate with both vehicles and the reach to maintain a link between them.

I’ve never tried this myself but it seems like it should work.

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If ESP32 can act as UART to UDP converter it would be trivially easy to use it as a part of multipoint system though it would be star topology

Can you elaborate a bit on this one?

Thanks for the links. Range doesn’t matter as I want to send instructions to two or more drones, telling them to fly to a certain GPS-point autonomously (meaning no constant feedback to GCS after being out of range)