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Which Transmitter You Should Buy...

Merv

Well-known member
#21
which has more range frsky or spectrum?
I have had my Fly Sky 9X system out to 2 miles with complete control. It was a learning experience for me. I was flying FPV and learned that from the air I live in an ocean of corn, it all looks the same from the air. I still had control and could see clearly, juts had no idea which way to go to get back to home.

Range has far more to do with antenna placement in the plane and flying environment (Wi-Fi, terrain, metal buildings, etc.) than brand of equipment.
 

thenated0g

Drinker of coffee, Maker of things
Mentor
#22
https://alofthobbies.com/taranis-x-lite-pro.html

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Introducing the X-Lite Pro the first FrSky radio to use the new ACCESS protocol. First, lets go over some of the physical upgrades that have been made to the X-Lite that makes it now the X-Lite Pro.
First on the list is the CNC'd aluminum, Hall Effect gimbals, better precision better feel equals better control. A new RF module that has lower latency. An increase in baud rate to 450K, resulting in higher communication speeds between internal and external modules. Wireless trainer system, but still supports the cable trainer system. And a internal battery charger round out this short list.
Let's get ACCESS.
ACCESS is FrSky's next generation transmission protocol that tremendously increases the capability of their transmitters. How, do you ask? The following is a paragraphical highlight list of the new capabilities of ACCESS.
The number of channels has been increased from 16 to 24. Latency has been decreased. Lower latency decreases the time that it takes for a channel command to leave the transmitter and produce a result at the aircraft. Binding, firmware updating and configuration of receivers can now be done wirelessly. The introduction of Smart Match; once a receiver is registered to a transmitter, that receiver can be wirelessly bound to the transmitter without having to push the bind button on the receiver. Both the the transmitter and the receiver cross verify each other during the bind process providing a greater level of security between the transmitter and receiver. Channel remapping; individual receiver pins can be assigned to any channel using the new "receiver options" page in the transmitter. This function helps to make setting up an aircraft easier and more goof proof than ever before. Use the onboard spectrum analyzer to check for potentially intrusive or excessively strong radio frequencies (or RF noise) transmission at your flying area using the built in spectrum analyzer. You can also use the Power Meter page to determine the RF output of external devices that transmit on frequencies between 900MHz and 2.4GHz. An integrated 6 axis, motion sensing control feature allows the pilot to control receiver channels on the aircraft during flight just by tilting the radio.
We have just touched upon the capabilities and abilities of the new ACCESS protocol if you would like to know more about ACCESS and the X-Lite Pro click here.

  • Number of channels: 24 channels
  • Weight: 328g / 390g (with battery)
  • Operating voltage range: 6.0 ~ 8.4V
  • Operating current: 190mA@7.4V
  • Operating Temperature: -20°C ~ 60°C (-4°F ~ 140°F)
  • Backlit LCD resolution: 128*64
  • Model memories: 60 models (expandable by micro TF card)
  • Micro USB interface: supports 2S Li-battery balancing charge
 
#23
I feel like such a moron. I just got into FPV a couple weeks ago have only flow a handful. Ingot my first bundle as a bday present. Got the bebop 2 FPV. I Was incredibly disappointed and discouraged in the goggles and how much of a 90 degree FOV blur that experience was. But I enjoyed flying so much and capturing film I knew that my experience could be better. So I went out and purchased the new FatShark HDOs since I figured my eyes have been spoiled playing video games in 4K that I’d need the best clarity and definition as possible. I receive the signal to the goggles but get no picture unfortunately. There are times where it seems like it wants to connect but has trouble decoding or something. I’m using a LaForge v4 for reference. So I’m looking for a transmitter that will suffice. I’ve seen some videos on YouTube with what seems to be someone using a QX-7 with their bebop 2 and the fatsharks because of the micro usb at the bottom of the QX7 to plug into the phone so that You can access Parrots application to control my drone. So my question is are all of these transmitters able to connect to 5.8G? And if so which one should I get? I feel I should highlight I fly a drone just not to confuse those who fly planes and such lol cuz I have no clue if they make a difference. Another note Im not looking for anything fancy I just want something that will fly my ONE drone and be compatible with my fatsharks and I’m by myself whenever I fly. I don’t have friends that are into this hobby yet. I’m operating under the assumption I need a transmitter capable of accessing my goggles that are in 5.8 and can connect to my phone via a micro USB. I’ll eventually get a race FPV when I’m settled into this screen!!
 
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#26
Anybody done a review for Flysky FS-i6X? They come with a FS-i6ab or FS-i10ab receiver. Come already with software loaded for 10 channel capability too now. Personally I think this radio is amazing for a cheap first Transmitter, it has done it's job very well so far for me on a tight budget. Only downside that bugs me is the light and cheap feel of it. I like things a bit heavier and solid feeling. Will be passing this onto my son when I step up and get my Nirvana.
 

FDS

Well-known member
#27
OrangeRX Tx6i V2
I have now had this TX long enough to feel comfortable reviewing it. Mine was bought second hand but there's two versions available from Hobbyking, the international version which does DSMX and DSM2 and the EU one which just does DSMX. Both program and function the same.
TX3.jpg
The product description says-
Features:
• Internal antenna
• Compatible with DSMX receivers
• 20 model memory
• Model match (stops you operating with wrong model selected)
• Servo sync (synchronises multiple servos when used on same function or when mixing)
• Roller/selector interface
• Telemetry: Battery, temperature, current, RPM (sensors need to be purchased seperately)
• Dual rates including rudder
• Large backlit LCD screen
• Integrated timer
• Dual speed trim
• Model name and type
• Throttle cut
• Trainer mode
• Model copy
• Travel adjust
• Sub trim
• Servo monitor
• Dual and exponential rates
• Fixed wing programming: Flaps, P-Mixers, Elevon, V Tail, Dual Aileron
• Helicopter programming: Gyro Adjust, Graphic Throttle Curve, Graphic Pitch Curve, P-Mixers, Swashplate Mix
• Swashplate types: Normal and CCPM 120
• Multi-copter mode
• Direct trim access display
• Adjustable stick lengths

Specs:
Model: OrangeRx Tx6i Transmitter
Frequency: 2.4GHz
Protocol: DSMX compatible
Number of Channels: 6
Number of Model Memories: 20
Stick Mode: Mode 2 (throttle on left stick)
Input Power: 4 x AA cells: Alkaline, NiMH, Nicad
Output Power: EU/UK specification (fixed)
Included:
1 x OrangeRx Tx6i transmitter (Mode 2) EU/UK version
1 x USB lead (for updating Firmware and RF module).
1x Link To User Manual Provided by seller
Required:
Compatible DSMX receiver
4 x AA batteries

My list of Pros-
  • Good stick feel, gimbals are responsive and precise given the price.
  • Easy to set up, especially BNF models with safe etc.
  • Rates and Expo are simple to do and work great.
  • Very solid binding to both Spectrum, BNF and Lemon RX receivers
  • Superb range, I have never had any trouble out to the limit of my visual range (about 200m) and the UK legal maximum altitude.
  • Good value
  • Batteries last well
  • Only buddy boxes with same type.
My list of cons-
  • Only 6 channels, no way to expand.
  • No module bay.
  • Thumbwheel- I find these hard to use, especially with cold hands, you have to push it in to select things and I find that difficult without moving it left/right.
  • Limited number of mixes
  • Less quad support than other TX's, I was able to set one up on there, but the limited channels can make aux's harder to set. Not tried it with an Inductrix.
  • Not many good set up videos, documentation fair but not super clear.
So in summary, I may have missed some subtleties in the TX, as I haven't obsessively tried to unlock all of it, I got airborne and that was enough.
If you are looking for a good BNF or DSMX transmitter that's an alternative to the DX6i, DXe or similar sub $100 transmitters and don't want to move outside 6 channels and DSMX/DSM2 but DO want simple programming and fair quality, then this should be a good option.
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#28
Jim, I'd like to add some fairly non-specific transmitter info to this thread that may help people make a decision on purchases. There are some examples throughout of references to Spektrum, but it's more to show a point about features, or bind n' fly. Hopefully this helps anyone looking to buy a transmitter, REGARDLESS of the brand!

Aircraft - This breaks down to a couple of things - What types of planes are you looking to fly? Very simple gliders, warbirds that have retractable landing gear and bomb drop capabilities, racing quadcopters, helicopters, etc? The different aircraft you fly may require more channels to operate some of the features, and so you may need more channels. Let me give an example of how the channels break down: on most basic planes, you have 3 channels - Ailerons, elevator, and throttle. Sometimes, that gets changed out to Elevator, rudder, and throttle, but the principles are the same - one channel for turning left/right, one for up and down, and one for the gas. :) That said, more and more planes are 4 channel, where you see Ailerons, elevator, rudder, and throttle, which help make the plane more responsive. Add in flaps to a plane to help slow it down in landing? Now you're up to 5 channels. Retractable landing gear? That requires another channel. At minimum, if you're buying a radio, you want at least a 6 channel radio, but if you plan to grow into some of these more advanced planes, an 8 channel is recommended.

Brands - There are quite a few out there: Spektrum, FrSky, Futaba, FlySky, to name a few - they're all different, and I equate this to a "Android vs. Apple, Chevy vs. Ford/Mercedes vs. BMW" debate. While the transmitters do the same basic functions, they use different protocols, and aren't necessarily compatible with another brand. Some of the radio systems have modules that you can buy to add on additional protocols, but not all of them - and some of those modules may require opening up your transmitter to make modifications internally, which may likely void your warranty. If you've just dropped $300-$500 on a transmitter, I can definitely understand being a little leery of tearing it open. :) Also, many of the "bind n' fly" planes that are out there are protocol specific - for example, if you purchase a Horizon Hobby plane like the Timber, or Apprentice, you'll find that they come with a Spektrum receiver in it. Now, this doesn't mean that you can't fly it if you have a different protocol radio, but you'll need an aforementioned module (if your radio supports it), or spend extra money buying a receiver to replace the Spektrum receiver. Some people don't have a problem with this, but if you want to fly a lot of the Bind n' Fly planes, it may be a consideration to pick a transmitter that will be compatible from the start.

Programmable - This is basically an LED screen that allows you to go in and set up the plane for your type of flight (but it may also be programmable through a cell phone/tablet or computer connection). For example, if you're flying a plane that the servos are backwards on (i.e., you push a stick left and the plane goes right) you can switch the servos around so it goes in the correct direction without having to do some disassembly and turn the servo around. It'll also allow you to do some micro trimming, so you can get the ailerons/elevator/rudder centered properly in case you had a little slop in building your plane. And, there's settings for different flight modes that you can program in - say you want to set up some settings for a particular plane that are a bit more limited, so that it'll fly with less reaction when your kids fly, vs. being able to do some crazy aerobatic flips, rolls, and turns, all at the flip of a switch. That's where programmability comes in, and it's a HUGE bonus. Lots of radios offer this, but the cheapest ones don't have it, or use switches to accomplish this functionality and it's all a combination of "flip this switch with these three others off in order for it to take effect." Also, some of the radios use OpenTX, which have a steep learning curve for programming, and it's almost a programming language in and of itself. That said, it DOES offer quite a bit of functionality, but if you don't have anyone that can help you (a good portion of the manuals for programming are written in Programmer language, then translated to Chinese, then from Chinese to English by someone who learned English as a Second Language, so a lot of the translations are difficult to understand), OpenTX can be a bit of a bear to muddle through.

Model Storage - working hand in hand with a programmable transmitter, model storage allows you to have multiple models stored in a transmitter. A lot of people initially think, "I only need it for one model." Others think, "Ok, maybe 5." Let me tell you that if you are going to build Flite Test planes, you want a radio that can do at least 10, preferably more. I have 13 models in my radio at the moment, which include my Flite Test builds, my computer for simulator time, and 3 different quadcopters. Cost is a factor in this one; cheaper radios have smaller limitations on how many models you can store.

Assistance/Support - Are you part of a club/flying field? Do you have friends who fly? If so, what are the most common radios being used in the area? Sure, this may sound like a "jump on the bandwagon" speech, but there are reasons for it. If everyone else at your field is using a particular brand of radio, it generally means two things - the radio is of good quality, and that they can help you if you need help tweaking a setting. Hand them a radio that nobody's seen before, and ask them for help, and they might be able to muddle through it, but it might be a bear at best for them. Also, if you are learning to fly with someone else via buddy boxing (they set up a radio as a master control for the plane you're flying, and your radio is slaved to theirs, so they can take over if things get out of hand), having a radio that is of the same brand makes it a LOT easier to do master/slave buddy boxing.

Features - There are a LOT of features that you'll pay extra for. Some of them are worth it, some are not. Let me give a great example, with the Spektrum radios. Spektrum has a Dx6e and a DX6 model. Both are 6 channel programmable radios. However, the Dx6e does not offer Diversity antennas, and the DX6 does (diversity means there are two antennas broadcasting signal at the same time, at different angles; the plane picks up whichever is the strongest signal and uses that one, in theory preventing loss of signal). In addition, the DX6 offers voice alerts, while the DX6e does not; these alerts will have a voice call out things like, "30 seconds remaining", as opposed to a beep or a tone for the same alert. Are these necessary features to spend the extra money on? I personally think that they are, but that's entirely up to you.

Transmitters are something that you're going to use for a number of years, with a variety of planes. This, and a battery charger (which is a whole other can of worms), are the two big investments you should make in this hobby. Ultimately, you're going to buy what you want, and what should best suit you, and that's what SHOULD happen. But I wouldn't recommend buying the cheapest radio out there, either. Spending $60 now, and then say, $250 later for the radio that you really want/need? Me personally, I'd rather invest in the $250 for something that'll last me 10-20 years before I have to go buy something that replaces my "old" technology. :)
 

JimCR120

Got Lobstah?
Site Moderator
#29
sprout, good info. Thanks a bunch for posting it. From time to time I clip and trim the posts to keep the thread content more meat and less potatoes. Your post, though not TX specific definitely highlights the common considerations, will certainly makes the cut. I'm not sure where I will try to keep it though. Beumping it to the beginning is my first choice but my forum powers have gotten rusty.

Thanks again.
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#30
sprout, good info. Thanks a bunch for posting it. From time to time I clip and trim the posts to keep the thread content more meat and less potatoes. Your post, though not TX specific definitely highlights the common considerations, will certainly makes the cut. I'm not sure where I will try to keep it though. Beumping it to the beginning is my first choice but my forum powers have gotten rusty.

Thanks again.
Not a problem. :) I have seen a lot of people new to the hobby lately, and they start asking what they should buy, and I'd rather not see someone go out and buy the cheapest thing they can only to find out it won't do what they want - and that the shop they bought it from doesn't do refunds or charges them a restocking fee or something similar...THAT will put someone off the hobby really quick. :)
 

Steve Fox

Active member
#31
I know that the fkysky FS-I10 is a pricey radio but since I bought mine two years ago I've not looked back.

Build quality and ergonomics are miles above the I6.
The features that the radio has in the software are just about everything you will ever need and the clear colour touchscreen just seal the deal.
I've watched so many people scrolling then pressing buttons then scrolling some more ect ect on other radios but with the touch screen on the i10 I can make changes to anything in record time and the graphical interface is good and pleasing to the eye too.

My i10 has been modified, I've removed both of the stock antennas and replaced them with sma sockets on the top of the radio and have patch cables connecting amplifiers to each of them which has increased my range well beyond that of my fpv video and I regularly fly above the clouds using it :) DSC_0416.JPG DSC_0413-1620x2880.JPG DSC_0415 (1).JPG DSC_0414 (1).JPG DSC_0417.JPG
 
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#32
It may be hard for a beginner to understand what you can and cannot do with a particular transmitter or receiver. The tendency is to think that spending more money will get you more capability. That isn't always true. Here's a partial list of what my inexpensive gear does.

My wife and I both use the FrSky X7 transmitter and I have 15 or more S6R stabilized receivers and two or three S8R receivers plus a long range RX and a couple of micro sized ones. The transmitter is available for just over $100 and the stabilized receivers are right around thirty bucks, other wise around 20 bucks.

You will be hard pressed to convince me I need fancier or more expensive equipment. My transmitter holds tons of models, it talks to me, it has telemetry. It's adjustable, programmable, and tweakable in just about every way I could imagine, and it's reasonably easy to set up. It cannot be beat when it comes to bang for the buck. It's easy to make the transmitter talk to you when you, for example, lower the flaps. If you like your flaps to come down slowly over two seconds, no problem. Prefer a one second delay before the flaps deploy? Again, set it as you wish. Got a V tail or flying wing? No problems. Flaperons? No problem. Want the gear to come down only if the flaps are half down or better? That's easy to set up. Want the transmitter to verbally warn you that the gear isn't down when you go to idle throttle? Easy. If all that talking bothers the guy flying next to you, you can make the transmitter vibrate in your hands and you can adjust the frequency of the vibrations as well.

It's also easy to set the timer function so that it adjust the flight time depending on throttle setting. When my transmitter says "Four minutes", if I go to half throttle, it will say "Three minutes" after an additional two minutes but If I'm flying at full throttle it will say "Three minutes" after an additional one minute. This mode practically eliminates running out of battery. Need a variometer? Just buy one for about 25 bucks, plug it in, and you can hear tones coming from your transmitter when your glider is ascending or descending. How high is it? Flip a switch and the transmitter will call out the altitude at any interval you wish.

It would not be too strong a statement to say, "If you can dream it up, you can program it into your FrSky transmitter"; it's that versatile. You can change all these settings from the transmitter screen or you can use the OpenTX software and do it from your PC.

The stabilized receivers have several modes switchable in flight. Stabilized mode takes the wiggle out of light airplanes so that they fly like larger ones. The wings level mode is wonderful for beginners, but I use it for all my hand launched airplanes. I just toss them into the air in any attitude and the receiver instantly puts the airplane into a gentle climb. My hand launched airplanes NEVER hit the ground.

Want to learn knife edge or hover? These receivers will fly a stabilized knife edge or hover with the flick of a switch. Of course FrSky makes lots of other receivers too, all of them inexpensive. They have tiny units suitable for micro sized airplanes and long range receivers for FPV planes.

The FrSky system is not directly compatible with the Bind-N-Fly series of airplanes. I really like the tiny Eflight UMX Timber airplane which is designed to work with Spektrum gear. But if I buy an inexpensive module for my transmitter, I can emulate a Spektrum transmitter. The modules are available from several vendors and they simply plug into a cavity in the back of my transmitter. Another cool feature is the ability to plug in a module for long range FPV and/or for use on 900mhz if you're into that sort of thing.

As you might imagine, most of this functionality is available from other manufacturers, but (depending on the brand) you might spend $500 on a transmitter with the same capability you can get for a hundred bucks. Stabilized receivers are available too, but at two or three times the price as those offered by Frsky.

I'm really happy with my FrSky gear. It's reliable too.