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RC Radios, Transmitters, Receivers, Servos, gyros Discussion all about rc radios, transmitters, receivers, servos, etc.

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Old 10-18-2012, 08:57 AM   #1
Twizter68
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Default Getting back on the sticks...

...and looking at several different radio options. I flew a Stylus for a long time on sailplanes, and will be back into sailplanes soon, but I also want to get back into the e-flight side of the house. I'm looking at the Eclipse 7 Pro 2.4.

Any thoughts/concerns/dire words of warning?

Bill

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Old 10-18-2012, 12:45 PM   #2
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you have now opebned the doors of Hell .....

There will be Futaba people

JR people

Spektrum people - how could we forget them

9x people

Airtronics

Hitec

the list goes on ... and ALL are based on personal bias. Sorry but I'll repeat that ... ALL on personal bias.

My bias is well known ... but trying to leave that aside .. I base my choice on costs and does it work. Do I need service back-up ? To be honest - no. Why not ? Having had expensive radios require service / repair and then received back from manufacturers agents and it goes faulty again not long after - such that I no longer trust repaired / second hand radios - I would rather buy a budget radio and replace outright when it goes wrong for less money than the expensive radio ...

I will now leave it to others to expound on the radio of THEIR choice ...

Just last comment - go with what YOU feel fits your needs, future needs, what fits YOUR hands, what feels natural when reaching for switches etc.
Buy the most function radio you can .. not the priciest .. buy the most capable even if you don't need all that fancy programming / mixing today.
In my mind the 6ch is base entry nowadays and to be honest I would look at 8ch or more ... that way it's spend once and be happy for significant time.

Nigel

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Old 10-18-2012, 03:41 PM   #3
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It's a little strange looking compared to the generally accepted layout but I think Hitec is ahead of everyone with the display positioned at the top of the case. This makes it much easier to see. I think we'll see more makers going this way especially on sets with telemetry.
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Old 10-19-2012, 01:57 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Turner View Post
It's a little strange looking compared to the generally accepted layout but I think Hitec is ahead of everyone with the display positioned at the top of the case. This makes it much easier to see. I think we'll see more makers going this way especially on sets with telemetry.
With most of what I fly - last thing I do is take eyes of the model to look at a screen ... honest.

For a newcomer - I would say that's even more so ...

But ... it's not only Hitec that do it ... my Radiolink EH6 $35 6ch Heli radio has top mount screen ...

The screen for me is a programming / set-up tool and not for during flight. I use sound alarms while flying ie timer / battery etc.

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Old 10-19-2012, 03:02 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Twizter68 View Post
...and looking at several different radio options. I flew a Stylus for a long time on sailplanes, and will be back into sailplanes soon, but I also want to get back into the e-flight side of the house. I'm looking at the Eclipse 7 Pro 2.4.

Any thoughts/concerns/dire words of warning?

Bill
Bill I am not a fanboy of one system - but do have strong opinions on Radio systems. I have all the majors, Futaba, Hitec and Spektrum.

The Eclipse is OLD. I realize they did an update to 2.4 GHz but the software is old.

If you are looking at Hitec - the A9 is the way to go and can be had for about $100 more new or a few bucks more used.

It is FAR more capable.

I have it and a DX18. I am moving to Spektrum as I fly so many BNF models but the A9 is right up there with even my DX18 - a far more expensive radio.

But if the Horizon BNF stuff is on your list Spektrum is the way to go.

Mike
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Old 10-19-2012, 03:36 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
With most of what I fly - last thing I do is take eyes of the model to look at a screen ... honest.

For a newcomer - I would say that's even more so ...

But ... it's not only Hitec that do it ... my Radiolink EH6 $35 6ch Heli radio has top mount screen ...

The screen for me is a programming / set-up tool and not for during flight. I use sound alarms while flying ie timer / battery etc.

Nigel
While I agree completely, if someone is using telemetry and want to know some of that information they are going to have to look at the screen.
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Old 10-19-2012, 11:52 PM   #7
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Well Mike has me beat. I only have Hitec and Spektrum radios. I fly majority of my planes with my Spektrum DX7. So far, the only thing I have had to get fixed on her was a new antenna (I dropped it). The customer service with Spektrum is AWESOME! Very hard to beat and they make a great product. Looking to upgrade to the DX8 soon.

Mike

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Old 10-20-2012, 12:58 AM   #8
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AEAJR is a big Sailplane guy and has authored several articles here. His manifesto on electric flight is a Bible for many. Check the current thread called " New pilot looking for decent controller" Great info there.

What's your budget ? I'm a Futaba guy but the $300.00
DX7 deal is awesome! Includes Telemetry(gimmicky IMO) SD card, 20 model memory, 3 rx's,etc. Schaweet !

Nigel's 9x seems like a great low cost alternative. You can buy a decent used car for what the Futaba 18mz costs ( $3000 )

So, you can run the full gamut. I love Futaba but if I was starting over, the DX7 would have me drooling.

Good Luck !

Hawk

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Old 10-20-2012, 03:05 AM   #9
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Hey Bill! Good t see you getting back into the hobby. I was in your shoes not long ago.

As for Radios, I am trying to decide what to get next. I currently have an RDS 8000 (Airtronics) and I really, really like it. As a matter of fact, I like it so much I bought two of them. Well truth be told, I use one as a buddy box.

Depending on your budget and how often/heavy you will be flying again should be a deciding factor. I think you know well enough to get what you think you will need in the future since you are a very experienced/skilled pilot.

With all that said, I think my next radio is going to be the Hitec Aurora 9.

Frank

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Old 10-20-2012, 01:05 PM   #10
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Don't forget that it's not only initial purcahse price of the TX combo - but later costs of extra Rx's etc.

One particularly nice radio quoted here - is available in latvia at not so bad price ... until you start to look at adding the Rx ... WOW ... I can buy a 9x Tx, a Tx module and 3 FrSky 8ch Rx's for same !

Nigel

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Old 10-22-2012, 04:33 AM   #11
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don't let the BNF stuff fool you unless your looking at the micro stuff from horizon.

here is a prime example. the parkzone albatros is $250 BNF. the PNP version is $185. i went with the PNP, an extra receiver for my flysky 9x was $9, and sky lipo's were $13. so $207 for everything. $43 bucks cheaper than a BNF.

i searched transmitter stuff forever trying to decide, and finally went with the flysky/turnigy 9x. out of the box it works well for most people. the added benefits of the open firmware and upgrades means that for around $175 i can have a radio with pretty much any function you can imagine.

spektrum, jr, futaba all make great transmitters, and any would work well, i just didn't want to pay out the money for a name. altho the futaba t8j looks like a nice one for the money.
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Old 10-22-2012, 04:46 AM   #12
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Hoghead,

+1 on the PNP advice.

I've heard a lot of good things about the 9X. I know Nigel(Solentlife) is a huge fan. I use the Frsky Fasst compatible rx's and they are very good. In fact, as good or better than Futaba. If I were not so entrenched with Futaba, I'd probably go the 9x route. I'm upgrading to the 8FG Super. That will be all I need for the imaginable and foreseeable future.

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Old 10-22-2012, 05:08 AM   #13
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one major advantage for me is i'm new to rc planes. i don't have alot of planes (yet), and i'm not fixed on any programming style yet. so i can go whichever way right now without a major change.

i have seen flysky transmitters in the rc crawler world for a while. they work great, seem to be very reliable, and firmware upgrades open them up to do anything. i see no reason why they won't be just as good in the rc plane world.

i love futaba simply for thier feel. they are well put together, work well, but the price has always turned me away from them.

the biggest point i would like to make to the OP is, all major brands are good, make a list of what fits you best, and what feels best to you, then look at price.

hope to bring quite a few planes next year to the dust bowl fly in!!
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Old 10-22-2012, 05:36 AM   #14
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Spektrum equipped BNF's are obviously aimed at people with Spektrum radios and for someone without the extra receivers, batteries, and charger they can represent a good value. If you are not using a Spektrum radio then, of course, PNP is a better choice.
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Old 10-22-2012, 06:59 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by dahawk View Post
Hoghead,

+1 on the PNP advice.

I've heard a lot of good things about the 9X. I know Nigel(Solentlife) is a huge fan. I use the Frsky Fasst compatible rx's and they are very good. In fact, as good or better than Futaba. If I were not so entrenched with Futaba, I'd probably go the 9x route. I'm upgrading to the 8FG Super. That will be all I need for the imaginable and foreseeable future.

-Hawk
I'm a huge fan of the 9x basically because for the price of a higher priced radio - I had a 9x and model + all gear I needed to go fly. But I do appreciate that the 9x has some quirks in programming that need help to sort, not exactly newcomer friendly. That's why I started the FlySky Yahoo group. But once mastered - it far outperforms any other 8ch radio - particularly if the FrSky module / Rx's are used. I have to say that the FlySky factory module and Rx's have had some bad instances ... whether due to the modules or pilot errors ? who knows. Its easy to blame the gear and not pilot ... no-one likes to admit their mistake.
Fit the FrSky and it's a very good set-up at a price that makes the wallet smile.

I was a die-hard JR man for many years ... plus had Futaba. If I was a rich man - I would likely still fly JR ... but I have a wife (!), boats (4), big house and estate to keep ... so budget is strict. 9x meets that fine. In fact I've ordered a 2nd 9x + FrSky to add to my inventory.

The total outlay of both incl. FrSky is still less cost than a commonly quoted competitor ... in fact the more expensive competitor is less channels and less functions than a base 9x.

A friend of mine has a Hitec ... very nice as well ......... but he very quickly swapped out the module to FrSky when he was quoted price for another Hitec Rx !

The result of what I've seen over these last few years has brought me to conclusion that I would always buy a radio that is modular and can have that module swapped out to alternative such as FrSky. Even my old 1980's JR Propo can take the FrSky module ... I haven't - I've left her as OEM 35Mhz, as Corona Synth Rx is so cheap, wasn't worth changing. But illustrates possibilities.

Go modular whatever radio you choose.

Nigel

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Old 10-22-2012, 02:28 PM   #16
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Nigel do you really recommend the 9X to a new hobbiest? I feel it is a fine system for those willing to tinker but the programing looks "interesting".

Just curious!

Mike
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Old 10-22-2012, 03:54 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Nigel do you really recommend the 9X to a new hobbiest? I feel it is a fine system for those willing to tinker but the programing looks "interesting".

Just curious!

Mike
Quoting from my own post immediately above yours : "But I do appreciate that the 9x has some quirks in programming that need help to sort, not exactly newcomer friendly. "

So in answer to your question - not really if the newcomer goes it alone.

If he's willing to join in the various online groups supporting the 9x - then why not ?

Lets be honest most newcomers only need 4 ch's to work .. 9x does that out of box. The rest is icing on the cake for later.

I can say that after the 2+ yrs I've had mine - there are still a lot of functions / programming I don't know on it. I learn a new one as I need .. not like some who want to know all whether they use or not.

Note my post above was not promotion of the radio to OP ... but a qualifier based on Dahawks comment about my support of the 9x.... to explain why.

Nigel

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Old 10-22-2012, 04:14 PM   #18
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Understood and agree the 9x is for those who like to tinker.
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