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Which radio?

Old 03-31-2012, 05:00 PM
  #1  
w3_
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Default Which radio?

I am going to buy a bixler (arf) from HK

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...00mm_ARF_.html

This is what im going to buy seperatly...are these good?

ESC: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...hless_ESC.html

LiPo pack:
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...Lipo_Pack.html

Charger:
What type of charger plugs into the wall and stops charging when it is done?

Which 4 channel radio (Tx/Rx) should I get. Im not thinking of spending too much $ on my first radio but something i could use for my next plane too.

What makes a good radio good? Is it the flying radius of your plane?
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Old 03-31-2012, 06:55 PM
  #2  
Bub Steve
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here's alot of what you'll need to know on this link,
bubsteve

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=AxLQmpkF4JA
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Old 03-31-2012, 08:22 PM
  #3  
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What kind of budget are you working with, You could spend $25 on a hobbyking special, and that would probably be fine for what you are doing. Any radio can be used on your "Next Plane", so are you talking something with model memory?

And this ESC has better reviews than the one you are looking at: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...ontroller.html
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Old 04-02-2012, 04:33 AM
  #4  
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There is a good many planes on the market that use the JR brand radio and it may pay you to get one of the spectrum radios just so you can use these planes, since a lot of them already have the receiver installed. If you plan to use any of these at all, then the Hobby King radio will not work. Maybe you could spend a little more money and get one of these with everything ready to go now and have a decent radio to go with it. I know they are a little more then what you are looking at, but a good plane like a Radian with the radio and all ready to go is really a good deal for a new comer and it's also a very good plane to learn to fly on. It's also a LOT of fun and there are a lot of people around with them, so you will get lots of help with it. Just something to think about.

Ed
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Old 04-02-2012, 09:02 AM
  #5  
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I am fairly new to RC planes, but after all my research, I would have to say spectrum/JR is the way to go. And would only consider getting a DX6I or above. I personally purchased a DX8, and could not be happier. If you know you are in this for the long haul, remember this, planes will come and go, but your transmitter should be chosen to fit all of your future plans/your budget.

I recommend Spektrum for two main reasons:

1.) Bind "N" Fly Options

3.) $6 HK Orange Receivers
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:42 PM
  #6  
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If your happy with the DX8, then all I can say is fantastic. I went with the Airtronics SD-10G for different reasons and am thrilled with it. I wouldn't trade it for anything. All I can say is, buy what makes you happy and hopefully has enough programing power to do what you want to do. If your radio won't do what you want it to do, then in the end you will never be happy with it. However if it is really what you want, then nothing can take that away from you. They have different radios for different people. Pick one....................

Ed
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Old 04-02-2012, 02:07 PM
  #7  
pmullen503
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Originally Posted by w3_ View Post
I am going to buy a bixler (arf) from HK

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...00mm_ARF_.html

This is what im going to buy seperatly...are these good?

ESC: http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...hless_ESC.html

LiPo pack:
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...Lipo_Pack.html

Charger:
What type of charger plugs into the wall and stops charging when it is done?

Which 4 channel radio (Tx/Rx) should I get. Im not thinking of spending too much $ on my first radio but something i could use for my next plane too.

What makes a good radio good? Is it the flying radius of your plane?
If you haven't placed your order yet, I have a couple recommendations. First, get a 30A BEC instead of a 20. They don't cost much more and if you upgrade the motor for better performance, you can use the same ESC.

Second, get 2200 mAh batteries instead of 1300. You'll need the weight anyway and if you ever get a more powerful motor you'll have the battery you need to run it.

Don't forget connectors, bullet and XT60, in your order if you can't source them locally.

If you really want to save money on your first radio, and get something reliable, look at used 72mHz radios. I bought a FlySky 4 ch radio just to use with a simulator for $12 on Ebay. It came with a receiver and I used with the simulator but it eventually went into several planes. It has good range, receivers are cheap, and it uses AA nimh batteries (a used radio may have a dodgy battery, nice not to have to buy a special battery).

2.4 gHz is replacing 72 mHz for good reasons but the 72 mHz technology still works just fine.

If you want to go 2.4 gHz, I would also recommend Spektrum for the reasons cited above. Spend the money for a new DX6i (DSMX) and skip the DX5 or buy a used one.

The Bixler is an easy to fly airplane and pretty tough. There is a massive thread on RCgroups. Worth looking at for modifications to strengthen weak areas and make the wings removable for transport.
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:14 PM
  #8  
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I fly Futaba but if I were in the market
I'd strongly consider Flysky. Nice reviews, reasonable prices. http://www.hobbypartz.com/79p-th9x-r...nel-radio.html
We all have our favorites. This seems like a pretty good deal and their RX's are cheap too. I buy their knock off FASST rx's for my Futaba 6ex. Good stuff.

Might as well bite the bullet and get something you can grow into.
Again, if you want to do things on the cheap, there's lots of options but I'd personally avoid 72,especially, if you plan to join a club.

Last edited by dahawk; 04-02-2012 at 08:43 PM.
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Old 04-03-2012, 02:55 AM
  #9  
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Airtronics fan here.

Like it's already been said in a few other posts. The money spent on a good radio now is a great investment for your future in the hobby.
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Old 04-03-2012, 12:56 PM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by dahawk View Post
Again, if you want to do things on the cheap, there's lots of options but I'd personally avoid 72,especially, if you plan to join a club.
Eventually I'll buy a 2.4 radio and currently have an older Futaba FM system. My club doesn't care that I use 72mhz since they all fly 2.4!
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:08 PM
  #11  
AEAJR
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For the price, why not just get the RTF?
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:27 PM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by AEAJR View Post
For the price, why not just get the RTF?
Kind of wondering the same thing...

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...dProduct=16542

Shipping is a bit pricey, and I don't see a USA warehouse stock of it though.
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:27 PM
  #13  
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AEAJR,

I would tend to agree with you except that most of the radios that come with the RTF's , while they indeed work, are short of any expo capability. The radio that came with the Airfield Cessna 182 was okay and I still use it on the modded-out HZ-Super Cub but it sure made that plane a bear to fly without having any the ability to program some expo.
Also, servo reversing is an array of up/down switches on the front face which are easy to accidently press while flying.

I'd say if it were simply a matter of funds or being uncertain on staying with the hobby, okay , go for the RTF TX. Otherwise, I'd be looking at a radio I could grow into and get to know. I'm a Mercedes, I mean, Futaba guy with the 6EX but am saving my pennies, oh well, quarters for the the 8FG.

-Hawk
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Old 04-22-2012, 09:06 PM
  #14  
AEAJR
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I have 2 9 channel Futaba 9C Supers. These are pretty capable radios. However my Radian is an RTF that came with a DX5e that I only use to fly the Radian. It all goes back in the box as a grab and go plane. Nothing to charge, nothing else to bring.

The difference between a Radian RTF and BNF is $90. Well, the cost of the battery and receiver is about $85. So the charger AND Radio and 4 batteries was $5. For $5 I found the RTF the better buy that gives me a grab and go system.

If your needs are pretty basic for this plane, and the included electronics are of acceptable quality, the RTF may be the better value. Most better RTFs have acceptable radio systems and may be adequate to their intended purpose. But your smileage may vary.

Of course the BIG question is what is your goal. Are you trying to get this plane in the air or are you trying to establish a foundation for future planes. THEN the question becomes, what are you goals?

Are you planning on staying with small electrics? Do you plan to add planes with flaps? Have you considered 3D? How about Turbines? What about electric 7 channel gliders? What about retracts, smoke, and on and on.

What radio you buy is based on:

type of flying
goals and objectives
BUDGET
Time frames

If you plan to add one plane a year for 10 years and all will be 4 channel sport planes, be they glow, gas, electric or glider, then pretty much any entry level 6 channel computer radio will do and will give you enough flexibility to add landing retracts, flapperons or flaps for basic operation. A Spektrum DX6i, A Hobby King 9X or a Hitec Electron 6 sport will give you all you need, as examples of entry level radios.

How much do receivers cost? Spektrum? $50 to $90. Hitec? $30 to $60. HobbyKing? $10 to $30.

But if you want to get into more complex planes or plan to accumulate a lot of planes very fast you want to look at advanced features, model memories, mixing software, etc.

Do you want to fly Horizon Hobby BnF planes? Then you want a Spektrum compatible radio? Don't care about BnF? Then is is not a factor. How about Hobbico's AnyLink compatible planes? Better get a radio that works with Anylink.

But for new pilots flying their first plane, the RTF radios are usually good enough to get them into the air to learn. Once they start to fly then they know more of what they need in a radio. Then they get the more advanced radio, but they can continue to fly that RTF on the RTF radio forever. Or use it to train a friend so you can both fly at the same time, since you will have two radios.

Last edited by AEAJR; 04-22-2012 at 09:42 PM. Reason: made a lot of additions
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Old 04-22-2012, 10:51 PM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by NFA Fabrication View Post
I am fairly new to RC planes, but after all my research, I would have to say spectrum/JR is the way to go. And would only consider getting a DX6I or above. I personally purchased a DX8, and could not be happier. If you know you are in this for the long haul, remember this, planes will come and go, but your transmitter should be chosen to fit all of your future plans/your budget.

I recommend Spektrum for two main reasons:

1.) Bind "N" Fly Options

3.) $6 HK Orange Receivers
Add to that Spektrums "Model Match" system. If you have several models all operated by the same transmitter, model match becomes important. Like having the wrong model in your transmitter and taking off with reversed ailerons. I've seen it happen on $$$$ gasser models.

With Spektrum/JR's model match, if your model doesn't match whats set in your transmitter, your model is dead. Dead. Dead. Can't take off when the motors propeller won't go.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:40 PM
  #16  
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There are lots of great radios. You want one that is programmable. If your budget allows you should go for a major brand. Personally I use Futaba and I recommend either that brand or Spektrum. Why? Because you can buy clone receivers for them at a fraction of the cost of name brand ones. You will find out how valuable that is over time. I've switched completely to Futaba compatible FRSky receivers and they are excellent - even nicer than those from Futaba. Same thing for Spektrum.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:56 PM
  #17  
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Receiver prices will add up more than the difference in comparable radios so, if you are budget minded, take this into account. Look at typical receiver prices if you are planning to have a lot of planes.

I use mostly 7 channel receivers so:

7 channel Futaba FASST receivers are $90
7 channel Spektrum DSMX receivers are $90
Airtronics 7 channel is $74
Hitec 7 channel receivers are $70

8 channel FrSky FASST or DSM2 (spektrum compatible) receivers are $30.

BIG difference. I use the genuine Futaba receivers in my big expensive planes but for my lesser planes I will be using FrSky compatibles. They get great reports.

Naturally if you use 4, 5 or 6 channel receivers all the numbers go down.

Last edited by AEAJR; 04-23-2012 at 08:25 PM.
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:49 PM
  #18  
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[QUOTE=AEAJR;866304]
I use mostly 7 channel receivers so:

7 channel Futaba FASST receivers are $90
7 channel Spektrum DSMX receivers are $90
Airtronics 7 channel is $74
Hitec 7 channel receivers are $70

8 channel FrSky FASST or DSM2 (spektrum compatible) receivers are $30.

QUOTE]

Most all of my models represent a total investment of at least $500 a piece, so I'll just stick to the name brand Spektrum series of receivers.
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Old 04-25-2012, 06:30 PM
  #19  
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I am very happy with my DX7. I just got back in and I feel that this radio will be able to allow me to grow. I also feel the 2.4 radios are the "bomb". No longer have to worry all the time about someone firing up their trans on your frequency.
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Old 04-26-2012, 09:01 PM
  #20  
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I hear you all, but you're overly cautious about the clone receivers, I think. The FrSky receivers are every bit as good as the Futaba ones. They are just as reliable. The range is exactly the same. You can use them on expensive planes just like you do on cheap planes. I have an FRSky FASST receiver that went through the laundry and still works perfectly. I had put it in my pocket after using it to test a model and the pants wenth through the washer and dryer with the receiver in the pocket.

It makes me angry that the production cost of a 2.4 ghz receiver is around 50 cents in china and the importers have the nerve to charge nearly $100 for them. The $23.95 I pay for FrSky at least is a lesser sin. A sin, nevertheless, but lesser.
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