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Is the Hitec Eclipse 7 a radio for the future?

Old 12-30-2008, 10:13 PM
  #1  
Hotwheels
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Default Is the Hitec Eclipse 7 a radio for the future?

I bought a Hitec Eclipse 7 a few years ago, but never had the chance to fly much but I did crash alot. I am trying to get back into flying and when I look at the current radios from Futuba, Spektrum, and JR, the Eclipse looks, well, out of date and complicated in comparison.

In terms of ease of programming and overall functionality, how does the Eclipse 7 stack up to the current offerings of other manufactuers?
Thanks
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:50 PM
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A lot of it depends on what you eventually want to do (aircraft wise). I had the HiTec Optic 6 for quite a while (actually two of them as they don't have many model memories) - went away from them as they weren't expandable in memory (and won't do aileron differential on an Elevon mix) Futaba 9C was my choice - since upgraded with a Spektrum module. Several of my friends fly JR 9303 - but you can't do a 4 aileron servo biplane mix on that radio.

Look at both the radio platform and the support (factory and "friends and family" via the internet). If you can find a good Eclipse 7 thread, might duplicate this question there and see what they think.
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Old 12-30-2008, 11:01 PM
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I owned a Hitec Optic 6 and knew several people who were very happy with thier Eclipse 7 radios. I think its pretty similar to Futaba and JR as far as 7 or 8 channel computer transmitters go (although some people swear one brand is better than others). I flew Futaba for years and years and stayed with it just because I became familiar with how to program the radio.

Here recently, the new 2.4 ghz radios have come out. I recently took the leap and have liked it so far, esp. on my little electrics. The only disadvantage is that you must buy the receivers from the same manufacturer (Spektrum). With the FM radios, you had many (often cheaper) choices for receivers.

Hitec is good stuff and there aren't many flight setups for airplanes or helicopters that it won't do... You might keep an eye on the new technogy, esp. if you're heavily into electrics.
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Old 12-31-2008, 01:03 AM
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Add a "Futaba" Spektrum module and you have 2.4 gighz!
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Old 12-31-2008, 02:13 AM
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Originally Posted by dogsheep View Post
Add a "Futaba" Spektrum module and you have 2.4 gighz!
Since they are about 109 with a receiver, that is a very good deal. The question for me is if there are enough advantages in something like a DX7 or similar Futaba in 2.4 to make that a more desirable option. The advantages might be in easier programming, more ergonomic controls etc.... Maybe this is just hairsplitting and there isn't enough difference to consider more recent radios?
Thanks
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Old 12-31-2008, 04:31 AM
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I don't think you'll find a big difference in the programming or capability between computer radios. Sure, there are bound to be minor differences. For example, with my old Futaba 8UAP, I can set it up so the timer turns on when I advance the throttle past a certain point - a great feature for electrics, since it keeps track of motor run time. Now, with the Spektrum DX6i, I have to remember to press a button... As far as I know, they all have ATV, Expo, Reversing, Mixing, and all the common stuff you'll need. When it comes right down to it, they can all be programmed and set up to fly just about any airplane or heli.....

The ergenomics is just a matter of taste. I really didn't like my DX6i at first - it felt clumsy and big. I was used to the Futaba. I'm beginning to get used to it, the more I use it though. You might visit the local LHS and try a few out for size.

Now the FM vs. spread-spectrum technology is a different thing. They are two different beasts. The advantage to FM (at least right now) is that it has been around for many years and there are tons of products available. It still works great, and has become very affordable. One disadvantage is that only one person can fly on one FM frequency (channel) at one time. There's many channels, but if two people on the same frequecy try to fly, something bad usually happens - I've seen it many times. Also, especially with some of the inexpensive receivers, FM can be prone to interference. Many of my electrics would twitch or do unexpected things. On 2.4 ghz, the transmitter searches and chooses the frequency for you automatically - this means that you don't have to worry about what channel you're on. Several people can all just power up and fly and let the radios figure out what channels to use. The spread-spectrum is supposed to be interference free, and I've never experienced any, but some on this board have reported problems. Its all still relatively new stuff.

I think you've got a fantastic computer radio and a good value. My advice is to learn how to program it, then go fly the stuffin' off it. Wear the sticks out, dude! After you've been at it awhile (ie. crashed enough, heh), you'll have a better idea of what you're after for your next radio.

Keep your tail light,
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Old 12-31-2008, 04:46 AM
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I'll second rcflyair. Go fly that Eclipse. I'd love to have one of those. If I had not already got a great deal on a new XP8103H I'd have bought an Eclipse.

I should also add that I just went back to 72MHz from Spektrum. I simply got tired of paying >$70 for a receiver I could trust in bigger than small planes. Other than the notion of not shooting anybody down I see no advantage to 2.4GHz.

Anyhow, that E7 is a very good radio. Don't worry about the number of models you can store in memory. You'll be awhile before you hit that problem.

Now go fly!

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Old 12-31-2008, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by rcflyair View Post
I think you've got a fantastic computer radio and a good value. My advice is to learn how to program it, then go fly the stuffin' off it. Wear the sticks out, dude! After you've been at it awhile (ie. crashed enough, heh), you'll have a better idea of what you're after for your next radio.

Keep your tail light,
I third this. Great advice.

Frank
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Old 12-31-2008, 02:31 PM
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The Eclipse is a good radio. Use it.
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Old 12-31-2008, 06:50 PM
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X5 - I finally broke down and bought an Eclipse 7 Q-PCM with Spectra module after using non-computer radios for the last 2 years. Very interesting and powerful radio. Don't get overwhelmed by everything it could do. Just learn as you go and enjoy the fact that it can do just about anythihg you would ever want to do with a transmitter.


Clint
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Old 12-31-2008, 09:26 PM
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Ok, I am convinced ... I thought maybe I had "old" technology and in the past few year there were improvements that would make the Eclipse less desirable in comparison to others. This is reassuring!
Thanks
JR
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Old 12-31-2008, 09:53 PM
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You may want to download a copy of FMS and buy a low cost USB -> transmitter adapter. This is a great way to get familiar with your radio and get some stick time without having to worry about repairs.

http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.11996



Clint
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Old 12-31-2008, 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by cbatters View Post
You may want to download a copy of FMS and buy a low cost USB -> transmitter adapter. This is a great way to get familiar with your radio and get some stick time without having to worry about repairs.

http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.11996



Clint
Thanks Clint! I just did the download of FMS and started the search for a cable. Great timing. I shop Dealextreme for flashlights and never looked beyond that, so this is a nice surprise.
JR
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Old 12-31-2008, 11:46 PM
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MUCH safer to get the feel of a new transmitter with FMS. Also much more interesting to check out new features of the radio with a simulated session. (Good way to experiment with exponential versus dual rates etc)

If you post the planes you are flying I'll see if I can steer you to appropriate FMS models.



Clint
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Old 01-01-2009, 06:26 PM
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Clint,
Slow Stick and Easy Star would get me started, although I have plans to pick up a Radian after I learn more.
Thanks
JR
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Old 01-01-2009, 07:23 PM
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Good collection of models and no spyware at this site.

http://gunnerson.homestead.com/files/fms_models.htm


Clint
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Old 01-01-2009, 07:43 PM
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And Easy Soar from another sitetiplex site.

http://plawner.net/4/easystar/easystar1.zip

I had not flown this one before. Seems pretty realistic.
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Old 01-03-2009, 07:43 PM
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I have the e 7 and i love it ! will do most everything you want , most of the guys i fly with went to 2.4 , i love it , i never get shot down , i have 15 receivers , id have to take out a second on the house to buy receivers on 2.4 , one friend had a spectrum , he lost about 10 planes before he threw it in the trash , was sent back 3 x , one time he talked to the tech , tech said changed out the bla bla bla , when he talked to customer service , said "nutin wrong wit it "....hes flying futuba now with no problems..........
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Old 03-12-2009, 05:51 AM
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My 12 year old son & I both use Eclipse 7's. I've had mine several years. I have a regular crystal module I fly with mostly & a Spectra module also for planes on other channels when needed. The Spectra module drains the transmitter battery quicker. My son got his w/Spectra module for Christmas '07. The only problem now is that we're running out of model memories. Considering buying a third one!
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Old 03-12-2009, 06:01 AM
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The Aurora 9 is the next big thing from Hitec. It might be worth waiting for since Hitec always makes good products.
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Old 03-12-2009, 06:08 AM
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WOW! Thanks. I had not heard of the Aurora 9. 30 model memory. Looks impressive!
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