Legacy Firmware Install

This firmware series covers all versions of non-configurable variants.

Update prerequisites

In order to install firmware onto an ESC, the following 4 items are required:

  1. Firmware files.

  2. Software utilities.

  3. Interfacing hardware.

  4. Firmware update mode activation mechanism.

1. Firmware files

The firmware for each F-Series unit is under the production firmware downloads page, under the legacy sections.

2. Software utilities

The APD Flashing Tool can be utilised to install firmware to production units. Ensure a copy of tool version 1.2 or later is running.

3. Interfacing hardware

The 200F3 can be directly updated through its Micro-USB port. Additional hardware is not required for this model.

All other F Series models are updated using a USB to UART adapter, which can be purchased from APD. Alternatively, all FTDI and SiLabs USB-UART bridges are supported and known to work.

4. Bootloader pin shorting device

A pair of metallic, fine point tweezers can be inserted into the bootloader holes to enter firmware update mode. For the ESC to enter firmware update mode, the two bootloader pads on the ESC must first be electrically connected when physically connecting the ESC to a computer.

Once the bootloader pins are connected, the USB can be connected to a computer.


Prior to flashing, familiarisation with the following physical features of the ESCs is advised:

Hardware diagrams

Please see the following page for annotated images of each F Series ESC model to assist in locating the physical features listed above.

Firmware update procedure

The steps to flash new firmware onto the ESC are as follows:

1. Enter bootloader

  • Ensure the ESC is not powered from an external battery or power supply.

  • First, electrically connect the boot loader pins together. These pins are either next to the UART pins or the USB port (ESC model dependent).

The F Series models have different UART pin-outs, refer to the diagrams in the F Series physical features page for pin connection guidance.

  • Once the bootloader pins are connected, connect the ESC to your computer. Plugin the Micro USB cable for the 200F3, or connect the USB-UART bridge for all other models.

2. Establish connection to ESC

  • Launch the APD Flashing Tool.

  • Select the Legacy Menu.

3. Install firmware

  • Once in the Legacy Menu, select the intended firmware file (.BIN) to install.

  • Select the COM port corresponding to the connected unit (if connected after the Tool was opened, the unit will be automatically found).

  • Select the appropriate model.

  • Click Flash.

  • Once the process completes, another ESC can be connected, or the program terminated.

The APD Flashing Tool will keep the firmware file loaded between subsequent flashes of ESC. This eases with batch flashing of units. The model type will also persist.

Last updated