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Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

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Old 01-03-2005, 10:46 AM
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BlackB12
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Default Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

I'm looking to get a computer radio, most likely a 6 channel one, but not spend and arm and a leg. Of the Hitec and Futaba brands, what radio do you recommend. I'd like to get some servos include in the price, but I'd give them up in return for a better radio for the 200-ish price. sure there's a lot of applicable radios on the tower site, but none of them include that much detail like how easy are they to use and so on. I'd like to get a radio to fly at least two airplanes with. I now have my cheapie, but reliable Tower (futaba) 4 channel FM, with no bells and whistles. I want EPA, expo, duel rates, etc. and multiple model memory since one transmitter will be flying both my planes.


Mike
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Old 01-03-2005, 11:10 AM
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JoeAirPort
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

Get one that lets you do flaperons and elevons (both use two channels) and make sure the trim and affects both servos on each mix. Also make sure you can independently change the center and endpoints for each servo in the mix. I know the Futaba 6EXA won't. Most of my planes now have at least two servos for ailerons and two servos for elevators. HiTech Optic 6 might do this. Check into it and make your decision carefully (because I didn't and now need to buy a 9C). It may be that no 6 channel out ther does that but that's what I'd shoot for. Talk to MikeMayberry in the Hitech support forum.
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Old 01-03-2005, 12:35 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

If you're looking for a good, basic computer radio, the Futaba 6EXA will do great. If you're going to be flying larger planes (needing significantly more than 4 servos), or those that would have flaperons and elevons on the same plane, it's probably not what you want. Contrary to what a vocal minority will try to tell you, a significant percentage of R/C fliers will never outgrow the functions of a basic computer radio like the 6EXA. I know lots and lots of fliers who have never had more than 4 servos (or perhaps 5 or 6 to add flaps and/or retracts) in a plane.

So, think about what you need for the next 2-4 years. If you're going to be flying fairly traditional planes, the 6EXA is a good choice. If you're going to venture into 3D or scale with lots of accessories, you might need to go up a couple levels.
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Old 01-03-2005, 03:17 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

I've seen the Hitec Eclipse 7ch with Spectra and no servos going for $199 at several places, including HobbyPeople. That would be my choice for sub-$200 computer radio.
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Old 01-03-2005, 07:40 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

Follow up question for you guys:

Will the Hitec Optic 6 with spectra module work with an AM receiver? I have an older receiver from an AM futaba Attack 4 radio sitting around.

MIke
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Old 01-03-2005, 09:41 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

No it will not. For two hundred dollars buy the 8 channel Polk Hobbies Tracker III Synthesized transmitter/receiver combo.
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Old 01-04-2005, 02:43 AM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

ORIGINAL: Volfy

I've seen the Hitec Eclipse 7ch with Spectra and no servos going for $199 at several places, including HobbyPeople. That would be my choice for sub-$200 computer radio.
I'd opt for the Optic 6 rather than the Eclipse. The Eclipse's ergonomics are *awful* -- none of the additional channels (apart from retracts) or the engine-kill button are accessible without removing at least one hand from the sticks.

How do you safely add half-flap while on your final approach in turbulent weather if you have to take your hands off one of the sticks to do so?

Although it's down a channel, the Optic 6 is a *much* nicer transmitter and better value for money (even at the reduced prices for the E7).

Yes, I have an O6 *and* an E7.
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Old 01-04-2005, 02:21 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

ORIGINAL: Skypilot_one

No it will not. For two hundred dollars buy the 8 channel Polk Hobbies Tracker III Synthesized transmitter/receiver combo.
Not familiar with Polk hobbies at all. Are they as easy to use as say a Futaba or Hitec?
MIke
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Old 01-05-2005, 03:51 AM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

the 9 CAF from towerhobbies with flightpack is at 320.00
Its easily the best deal going around.
You can sell the flight pack that comes with it for 100+ easy (it has a 8 channel FM reciver)
bringing your total to 220.00
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Old 01-05-2005, 07:45 AM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

Polk Hobbies owned Aristocraft which became Hitec. For two hundred dollars you get a synthesized receiver and transmitter and one GWS servo. If you want to be able to change frequencies this is the only way to go, no crystals to break.

You can't use the am receievr unless you buy a am transmitter.

You would need the receiver that comes with the 9C Futaba so you will be paying $300.00 +. If you only have $200.00 the Polk Tracker would be the way to go. The 8 channel wireless frequency changing synthesized receiver is worth that.
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Old 01-05-2005, 09:12 AM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

my two cents is to buy a used radio...there are a ton of them for sale in good condition, and they will run circles around anything you can buy new. i see JR 8103s all the time in the $200 range, 6012s, 378s - the 8103 is an outstanding buy in that price range. i am not selling one, so this isn't a ploy....

buying a resale radio isn't a big deal, if possible find one from an owner who flies helis, jets, gas airplanes - something that doesn't involve fingers and glow fuel. also, if the owner has a case, it's a pretty good bet he takes cares of his radio.

P
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Old 01-05-2005, 12:16 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

get an optic6 ..nice new radio under $200 more functions than Fut 6exa
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Old 01-05-2005, 04:40 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200


ORIGINAL: XJet
I'd opt for the Optic 6 rather than the Eclipse. The Eclipse's ergonomics are *awful* -- none of the additional channels (apart from retracts) or the engine-kill button are accessible without removing at least one hand from the sticks.

How do you safely add half-flap while on your final approach in turbulent weather if you have to take your hands off one of the sticks to do so?

Although it's down a channel, the Optic 6 is a *much* nicer transmitter and better value for money (even at the reduced prices for the E7).

Yes, I have an O6 *and* an E7.
Having owned an Eclipse briefly before jumping ship to a Futaba 9C, I would have to agree the E7 ergos really bite. Still, I would still prefer that one extra channel, even if the programming sucks. There are a lot of setups for which 7ch is the absolute minimum channel count. A quad flap Stik is one example.

I like the buying used idea. Now that the new 9C Super is out, there are bound to be a lot of still pretty new 9C TXs going on the block. I actually bought a second 9C system while Futaba had the Great Fall Rebate. After all the discounts, gift certs and rebates were tallied, I don't think I paid much more than $200 for the 9C system.

Don't bother with the AM stuff for airplane use. They are okay for RC cars and boats, but that's about it.
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Old 01-05-2005, 05:09 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

ORIGINAL: Volfy


I like the buying used idea. Now that the new 9C Super is out, there are bound to be a lot of still pretty new 9C TXs going on the block. I actually bought a second 9C system while Futaba had the Great Fall Rebate. After all the discounts, gift certs and rebates were tallied, I don't think I paid much more than $200 for the 9C system.

Don't bother with the AM stuff for airplane use. They are okay for RC cars and boats, but that's about it.
I keep hearing about all these discounts, rebates, etc. Where are these online discounts?

Oh, the AM radio I have would be stuck in this cheap combat ship I have. It would be a radio I could afford to lose!

MIke
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Old 01-05-2005, 06:37 PM
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Default RE: Best 6 channel computer radio under $200

Tower Hobbies had a big sale back in Novermber 2004. All the "old" 9C systems had a $50 rebate, plus $20 gift cert and the typically 10% discount code (e.g. $40 off for $400 purchase). I think mine had a total of of around $100 off.

Unfortunately, that's gone now. You snooze, you loose.[]
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