Beware Orange T-Six Range Check


Elite member
A couple of months ago, DamoRC Jnr crashed a model and it looked like he lost signal to the plane. He flies with an Orange T-Six, which I have to say has been a great radio up to that point. I prefer it to my DX6i with respect to the programming interface and the robustness of the trim switches (which IMHO are a disaster on the DX6i). Closer examination revealed that the shielding on the Tx antenna was broken at the bend. I bought a replacement antenna for the DX6i and installed it into the T-six and all was well again based on repeated testing with the range test activated.

A few weeks ago I started having trouble with my DX6i on a couple of planes using Orange Rx receivers. The easy conclusion is that it is the Rx, but I had not had issues with these planes before so it was possible that the transmitter may have been having a problem. Note that my other planes flying Lemon Rx did not seem to have any issues, but I still thought that a small problem with the Tx signal might reveal itself with the Orange Rx and not the Lemon Rx.

I wanted to test the signal strength from the DX6i so I found this circuit on the web and built it on a breadboard.

simple RF meter circuit.png

It works okay-ish with the parts I could cobble together. I used it to check the different signal strengths between the Orange T-six and the DX6i. Although this approach is fraught with technical issues that could impact the conclusions drawn, I was reasonably happy that the two Tx were behaving similarly. For fun, I played around with the settings on the DX6i and confirmed that if you select the EU 328 option in the power setting, you get significantly less signal from the Tx than the US 247 , which is as it should be. Also, if you place the radio into range testing mode, the signal almost disappears. The shocker was when I did the same with the Orange T-six. When you place it into range test mode, there is NO drop in signal strength. Also if you switch the power setting from EU to US, there is no change in signal strength.

So I would caution any T-six users to be wary of using the range test on this radio. In my limited testing (and this could just be a problem with my radio), the range test is not working as it should.