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View Poll Results: Which Radio Should My Buddy Get?
JR-28x
12.55%
Jets DS-16
28.34%
Futaba-18mz
35.22%
Multiplex
2.83%
Other
21.05%
Voters: 247. You may not vote on this poll

Which Radio To Buy?!

Old 12-11-2015, 11:45 PM
  #1  
ravill
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Question Which Radio To Buy?!

We have a buddy who is getting back into the hobby and wants a radio suggestion.

As I've been flying JR for years, I most certainly recommended it! I love my 12x-MV!

There were some grumblings out and about, and the 28x thread has posts mostly about figuring out the xbus system.

The Jeti thread is 98 pages long (ok, I didn't read it all yet, but I'm getting through it) and the majority of the posts seemed to talk about how cool this or that feature was.

That's a subtle but poignant difference.

What about weatronic? Futaba? Multiplex? Airtronics? (Gulp) Hi-Tec?(double gulp)

So, what radio should my buddy get?!
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Old 12-12-2015, 12:17 AM
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I forgot about spektrum!

BV gives you DX18 files for the Ultra Bandit, so there are many people flying with the DX-18! And for $830! No less.

Lets hear those opinions!

There seem to be so many choices right now, I'm glad I don't have to choose a new radio.
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Old 12-12-2015, 02:41 AM
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Birdman6310
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DX18 all the way
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Old 12-12-2015, 03:56 AM
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I own the 18mz, wish I had a Jeti. Futaba's native telemetry has been stagnant and lacking compared to Jeti, which is now literally years ahead.
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Old 12-12-2015, 04:51 AM
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If your looking for something to "play" with (telemetry) - then any of them, but if your looking for something to "fly" with, then 18MZ set to 32 channel operation - 100%

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Old 12-12-2015, 06:32 AM
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Hi Raff,

I am am a long term jr user like you with a 12x-mv and I bought an 18mz that I am now using with my new models. I prefer the feel of the jr sticks but futabas programming flexibility leaves jr for dead. I don't have a 28 x and won't buy one for a while until some time has passed.....not a fan of buying the first gen of anything really. I don't like the look of the jr xbus gear...looks a bit half baked to me. I love the robbe pss 2018 and the associated hardware, powerbox stuff is cool too. Weatronic capability is impressive but I have not played with the transmitter and getting the stuff locally over here is not that easy.

If if I had to pick one ATM I would go 18mz. My 2c...
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Old 12-12-2015, 06:53 AM
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Jeti, especially for jets, innovative telemetry, quick to adapt and update, fabulous quality hardware. Several long time Futaba 18Mz users here have recently purchased Jeti to "try" it out because of disappointment with Futaba's lack of updates.
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Old 12-12-2015, 07:30 AM
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+1. Long time Futaba user, love the 18MZ generally and have found it to be highly reliable, but they are getting left in the dust by Jeti, Weatronics and others on innovation. I always loved the way JR's 10X and 12X felt in the hands .. no one was close, but their early 2.4 RF links were a joke (satellites, fade counters, divining rods...) .. they are up to date now on RF link but even slower than Futaba on innovation.

I wish someone at the F-entity would wake up to the modern software world and consider an open source strategy for their high-end .. I firmly believe it could re-establish their leadership, and there are many RC hobbyists who are expert SW developers who would contribute so much to the platform!

Dave
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Old 12-12-2015, 07:33 AM
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I love my Airtronics 10 channel for the unflinching reception but will be the first to admit it doesn't have all the telemetry voodoo and the 10 channels run out real quick, wish they made a 14 channel or higher.
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Old 12-12-2015, 07:49 AM
  #10  
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I've had a couple DX18s and switched to a Futaba 18MZ and I've been very happy. The programming flexibility is better than other radios from what I've experienced. I'm not a big telemetry user, so I can't speak to those features. Jeti's radio would be the only other I'd consider at the moment.
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Old 12-12-2015, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by modtron View Post
If your looking for something to "play" with (telemetry) - then any of them, but if your looking for something to "fly" with, then 18MZ set to 32 channel operation - 100%

modtron
Oxford UK
1) I was unaware that accurate battery and fuel consumption or other parameters which some feel enhance the safety or enjoyment of the hobby should be relegated to the lowly status of "play", in comparison to the apparently serious business of sticks and switches which manipulate the controls on the model. Learn something new every day, I guess.

2) I believe you have more available to you in Europe and thereabouts through Robbe than we do here in the U.S. through Futaba, which has fairly well left us high and dry in those regards. Clearly then, "any" of them will not do here.

3) I've flown Futaba since the 70's and own two 18mzs, but if I were starting fresh I'd go Jeti. No question.
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Old 12-12-2015, 08:26 AM
  #12  
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I fly futaba 14sg and love it just ordered a new 18mz , I like jeti also but have flown futaba since the 80 s never had a problem
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Old 12-12-2015, 08:28 AM
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Jeti looks like the best choice right now to me. All things considered. Flagship transmitter for $1300. Unlimited programming, serious ability to upgrade hardware and software. No skin in any brands game.

The two "top" brands JR and Futaba have pricing that is seriously out of touch with reality. $3K for a transmitter, really, when the step below model is half that price and less, with 95% of the features. Let's be honest with ourselves please, $1500 for 2 or 3 widgets that most will never use.

And the DX18 for >$1K is a very nice choice.

$3K flagship transmitters would be a frikkin pipe dream for 75% of the people who have them without credit cards.

Can opened.
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Old 12-12-2015, 08:42 AM
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Edgar Perez
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I understand that Weatronic have the longest RF range. Also their redundancy model (dual Tx, dual Rx) is very easy to implement. Telemetry is available. Software in the BAT 60 is now well developed (although internal weatronic gyro implementation is still pending.
This is the type of computer radio that have tons of features is you are willing to learn how to maximize it (I think Jeti is also in that category of radio).
I'm very satisfied with Weatronic, although their BAT 60 took a very long time to get to the current level of software.I think the downside on this hemisphere is that they is limited information in english, as the company is German. However ultimate jets have done a great job of expanding on the information available.
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Old 12-12-2015, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Edgar Perez View Post
I understand that Weatronic have the longest RF range. Also their redundancy model (dual Tx, dual Rx) is very easy to implement. Telemetry is available. Software in the BAT 60 is now well developed (although internal weatronic gyro implementation is still pending.
This is the type of computer radio that have tons of features is you are willing to learn how to maximize it (I think Jeti is also in that category of radio).
I'm very satisfied with Weatronic, although their BAT 60 took a very long time to get to the current level of software.I think the downside on this hemisphere is that they is limited information in english, as the company is German. However ultimate jets have done a great job of expanding on the information available.
Shocks/amazes me this radio doesn't have this ability yet. It was one of the first, if not the first to have a receiver designed and built with a gyro. Don't think you can go wrong with Futaba, JR, Jeti or Weatronic. I have found it is nice to have friends that fly the same radio. It helps with programming questions.
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Old 12-12-2015, 10:59 AM
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Other

Taranis - Software has been out there for years, tons of support, BUILT IN RSSI (few other radios have it at all), best link (see spectrum analysis), tons of mixes, 32 mixable channels, tons and tons of telemetry, etc ... etc...

Last edited by erh7771; 12-12-2015 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 12-12-2015, 11:15 AM
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If you are concerned with telemetry and updates/support... Jeti. I don't think any other manufacturer can keep up with their introduction of hardware and software.

I compared Multiplex and Futaba (18MZ) and went with Jeti DC-16 (tray) No regrets whatsoever.
I will be buying the new DC-24 over the winter, as I am curious about the haptic gimbals .... Hoping to setup a stick shaker stall warning system, just for fun.

I flew Futaba, Orbit and Kraft since the 70's and am amazed at what today's radios are capable of.
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Old 12-12-2015, 11:17 AM
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George
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If telemetry is your "driver", then there's no question that Jeti is probably your best bet. I know some Futaba users have jumped to Jeti for that very reason, and others are "threatening" to; but for me personally, telemetry is not a major factor, so I'd stick with my 18mz. I've held the Jeti and just can't get past the ergonomics and slider & trim layout. I had the chance to "try" the Jeti but declined as I never saw myself ever fully going to it.

I haven't flown JR since the 8103 days so can't comment on the newer protocol from a user stand point. I flew Weatronics gear when it was module-based and really liked it. I have only held a Bat 60 for a few seconds, and honestly I don't remember how I felt about it; and service has always been a concern, but how much service do you really need if it works? I looked at Multiplex years ago, but they were extremely rare here and I never could get my hands on one to see how it "felt". The Airtronics I would never consider; and I know there are probably literary hundreds or maybe even thousands of DX-18s in use, but I wouldn't consider them either. (Just my opinion, but donning the flame-suit for the inevitable.)

I would never buy a radio without first "handling" it to see how it felt. When the 14mz first came out, I was ready to upgrade from my 10C, but after holding it and a 12Z, the 12 fit my hands and felt so much better to me, so that was my choice then and now the 18. I'm completely happy with my choice/s and that's all that matters in the end.

You need prioritize your needs and wants, ask questions, then decide.

Good luck in your quest.
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Old 12-12-2015, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by erh7771 View Post
Other

Taranis - Software has been out there for years, tons of support, BUILT IN RSSI (few other radios have it at all), best link (see spectrum analysis), tons of mixes, 32 mixable channels, tons and tons of telemetry, etc ... etc...
Can you post a link to the spectrum analysis you referred to?
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Old 12-12-2015, 02:04 PM
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Love my 18mz! 3K for a radio that I love & don't have to worry about crashing is ok with me. I guess someone has to be the Rolls Royce of radios..lol

Last edited by BlueBus320; 12-12-2015 at 02:11 PM.
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Old 12-12-2015, 02:20 PM
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I just converted from a DX-18 to a JR XG-14. Extremely happy with the JR and it's XBus system. Hooked up one 7 channel receiver into a Duo X Port and had 14 full channels. I noticed a big difference in response and smoothness over the DX-18. I had several QC issues with a brand new DX-18 and lost confidence in it. The JR Xbus system is great.
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Old 12-12-2015, 03:43 PM
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Cool

I pretty much agree with the view that Jeti is at the forefront of transmitter technology and that it is very good value for money. I also agree that Futaba telemetry sucks. I don't have experience with JR, Airtronics or Spectrum. Up until 2007 I used Multiplex and still today find myself wishing I still had some of the features available from my old Profi 4000.

But I am using 18MZ and don't see myself changing from it any time soon.

Cheers,

Jan

Last edited by Springbok Flyer; 12-12-2015 at 03:45 PM.
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Old 12-12-2015, 06:22 PM
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If I were to buy a Futaba radio today, it would be the 18SV at $1300. That wasn't an option when I bought the 18MZ years ago.
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Old 12-12-2015, 06:57 PM
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+1
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Old 12-12-2015, 08:17 PM
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Lots of good info. above. The bottom line, to me, is that everyone out there has a better RF link than Spektrum, so unless you have a lot of brand loyalty there, I'd go with Futaba, JR, or Jeti. As George mentioned, service and support is still an issue with Weatronics, at least in the US.

The JR RF link is good, but the transmitter selection for lots of channels and telemetry is limited unless you go with the 28X - but I haven't heard much about that yet.

The Futaba RF link is also good, but you do need a 3rd party unit if you want receiver redundancy (JR and Jeti have a unit for that), and as others mentioned, their telemetry options are limited. If you go with Futaba, the 18SZ is by far, the best bang for the buck - the price of the 18MZ is hard to justify.

Jeti (DS-16) seems to be the best bet for link and telemetry at this point. However, the DS-24 which everybody says is right around the corner in the US, offers dual frequency band redundancy in the link as well as more channels, so I'm waiting for that to really evaluate whether on not to jump off the Futaba boat. Right now, the cost of changing brands doesn't make sense for me right now - so I'll continue flying my Futaba 12FG...

Bob
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