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2.4Ghz Range Sucks

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Old 03-21-2010, 04:32 PM
  #1  
Dr. Fosgate
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Default 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

I just bought a KO Propo EX-5 UR. What is the range on it? I bought it assuming it was better than my 15 year old AM Airtronics XL2P. Well, I think I was wrong.

I put one receiver in my truck and it gets about 60ft of range prior to glitching and stalling out.

I put the other receiver in my nitro boat. I set the boat in the driveway and checked the range without the nitro engine running. I get about 80ft with it.

I sure hope I did not make a mistake buying this radio. Is it only for R/C track racing, where these ranges would be acceptable?

What kind of quality is KO Propo? I am halfway interested in taking the transmitter apart, thinking the antenna was not connected to the board at the factory or something.

What other radio would you guys suggest? All I do is play with my truck in the yard, and I need about 200ft or so of range. My AM XL2P served my needs just fine (range to the limits of eye sight), but I wanted something which would let me store several models in memory (I have about 5 models).
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Old 03-21-2010, 04:57 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

I've run the Futaba FASST system in boats, both gasoline and fast electric, and had range to the limits of what I can see the boat. During SAWS runs this puts the boat over 1,200 feet out and the radio has been rock solid. The 3PM-X is an outstanding radio for a great price.

More precisely your thread should say that KO 2.4 range sucks, since not all radios are as poor as the one you seem to have. Does it have a low power mode for range checks and is that off or on when you get the short range checks??
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Old 03-21-2010, 05:40 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Thank you very much for the response, I really appreciate it.

I did not want to post KO range sucks, unless all KO radios have poor range, which I don't know. I looked over the whole manual and I don't see anything at all about a range check mode.

I just took the transmitter apart and the antenna seems fine.

Do you think this is an issue since I am in a residential area (lots of wireless internet access points among other things)? I am confident it is not related to my installation in the boat or truck, since I put these new receivers in the same locations as the older AM stuff was.

I am thinking I should have just bought a Futaba or Airtronics instead of an "off" brand.
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:04 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Is this Radio New or used?
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:07 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Is there a power down mode for range checking? I know my futaba's have it. Check the manual for such a feature. Might be in power down mode while driving for some reason. Just a wild guess......

Kevin
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:08 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

While it is possible that a 2.4 rich environment might affect your system it usually just slows it down, not kill the range. I suspect that it may somehow be stuck in a reduced power range check mode. Otherwise most any decent brand should give you more than 60 feet range.
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:14 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Ko Propo only makes radios for the RC car market.

They make high end radios for the racer.

I have to ask is your radio new or used?

http://www.kopropo.com/america/index.php



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Old 03-21-2010, 06:52 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Thanks guys for the responses!

The radio is brand new (or so I assume). I got it from www.myatomic.com

I took it out of the box, loaded it up with 8 rechargeable NiMH batteries (fully charged), plugged one of the receivers into my Novak Spy ESC on 4 cells and an old non digital servo. Turned it all on following the manual and the receiver paired with the transmitter with zero issues. This was all on my work bench, not in a vehicle. I then took out my old truck and installed the receiver in it. It has the old non digital servo in it, and a Tekin 411-G2 ESC with BEC (6V), on a new 5000 NiMH battery pack.

I took the second receiver and put it in my boat. The boat has a 4 cell receiver pack, and two traxxas digital waterproof servos in it. Turned it on and it paired with the transmitter no problem. I then adjusted all the settings for the boat and saved them in one of the memories.

I went back to the truck today and adjusted all its settings, along with adjusting the ESC (so old it does not have one button setup). I took it outside and that is when I discovered I can only go about halfway down my driveway before it starts stuttering or quitting altogether. That is when I went and got out the boat to see if maybe my issue was with the receiver. I got only slightly more range out of the boat, but not enough to write home about.
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:55 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

I would try it without the BEC and ESC connected. Just a battery straight in with a single servo sitting on a table or bench or something just to see what you get then. KO is a decent radio and there is something odd going on to get such limited range.
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:58 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Here is some additional information. The motor in my truck is an old Green Machine 2. I believe it has internal capacitors installed in it. I do not have capacitors installed externally on the terminals or the can. But, I don't see where this would be a problem. I left the truck on the driveway and gave no throttle. I moved the steering back and forth from right to left over and over as I walked away from the truck. When I get about 60 feet away it starts misbehaving. Either it does not turn smoothly, or does not turn at all. Since I am applying no throttle, I doubt the motor capacitors could have anything to do with it. And, with no throttle there is so little current flow from the battery, I doubt any EMI is being generated there.
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:00 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks


ORIGINAL: Silent-AV8R

I would try it without the BEC and ESC connected. Just a battery straight in with a single servo sitting on a table or bench or something just to see what you get then. KO is a decent radio and there is something odd going on to get such limited range.
Well, I think I covered that with the boat test. The boat is a nitro boat. It has only the receiver, the 4-cell battery pack, and two servos. I get about 80 feet of range from the boat (engine is not running).
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:24 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks


I think the best thing to do is send it back to KO USA for warranty or repair.

I run KO with no issues.

They are great people to deal with.

They cater to the racer. Give them a call.

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Old 03-21-2010, 07:49 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Below is a photo of my super scientific test setup.

I placed that about 3 feet in the air. I set the failsafe to full motion in one direction. I walked away from the setup with the transmitter to see what range I got before the fail safe kicked in. At about 75 feet the servo started moving erratically. I then walked back to the setup. Then I started moving the servo both directions while I walked away. This time I got to the end of my yard (maybe 100 feet) and it was still moving as I gave it commands. So, I can't seem to nail down an exact range.

I also put the setup just inside my house and tried it through the sliding glass door. I got 20 feet away before it lost all signal. This is not really a useful test, but it still seems a bit short if you ask me.

I guess I am going to contact KO and see what or if they can do anything for me. This setup has exactly the features I need, and I really hope it is just a problem with my specific transmitter, not something else.

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Old 03-21-2010, 07:55 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

If the NiMh batteries are new, there is a possibility they are not delivering "all they can" even though you charged them. After the required format process, NiMh's really put out! Just a thought.
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:57 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Antenna position on 2.4 Ghz is very important, the signal will be masked by metal or carbon fiber near the antenna more than with 27/72/74Mhz
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Old 03-21-2010, 08:05 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

The batteries are new, so maybe that is an issue. But, they were in the truck, not the boat. In the boat I am using a 4-cell receiver pack.

The antenna is in the stock location on the truck (Team Losi LXT). The truck is made of Losi's carbon reinforced plastic I believe, so maybe that is an issue. In the case of the boat, it is fiberglass, with the only real metal being the engine.
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Old 03-21-2010, 08:11 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Here are some photos of the installation in the truck. Is there anything I am doing wrong in these photos?



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Old 03-21-2010, 08:27 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

That's a perfect position for the antenna, this is puzzling KO radio have very good reputation
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Old 03-21-2010, 11:59 PM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

nimh AA batteries produce 1.2 volts per cell VS regular alkaline AA's which are 1.5 so for your RX that would be a 4.8 volts NIMH or 6.0 volts Alkaline, and the transmitter 9.6 volts NIMH or 12 volts Alkaline. Unless KO specifies to use Nimh batteries, I would switch to regular Alkaline batteries, 2.4 ghz systems can be picky with voltage and running nimh (fully charged even) in place of regular alkalines would be like running with dead batteries. hope this helps. Also may be worth checkin out throwaway lithium AA's from energizer which are also 1.5 volts per cell.
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Old 03-22-2010, 03:05 AM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks


ORIGINAL: Dr. Fosgate

I just bought a KO Propo EX-5 UR. What is the range on it? I bought it assuming it was better than my 15 year old AM Airtronics XL2P. Well, I think I was wrong.

I put one receiver in my truck and it gets about 60ft of range prior to glitching and stalling out.

I put the other receiver in my nitro boat. I set the boat in the driveway and checked the range without the nitro engine running. I get about 80ft with it.

I sure hope I did not make a mistake buying this radio. Is it only for R/C track racing, where these ranges would be acceptable?

What kind of quality is KO Propo? I am halfway interested in taking the transmitter apart, thinking the antenna was not connected to the board at the factory or something.

What other radio would you guys suggest? All I do is play with my truck in the yard, and I need about 200ft or so of range. My AM XL2P served my needs just fine (range to the limits of eye sight), but I wanted something which would let me store several models in memory (I have about 5 models).


Many years ago, Kraft Systems used Japanese made KO servos. The first batch of the KPS-20 servos (made by KO) had a 50% DOA rate. It was a shame, because the ones that did work, really worked well.

I would seek a refund or repair. Your range is indicative of a major problem and it is not typical for that band.


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Old 03-22-2010, 08:26 AM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Ed,
Didn’t know that about the Kraft systems.
I know that the JR Z1 Pro was made by KO Propo for JR.
Over the years KO has made products that JR has put their name on.
If I remember correctly the JR 756 radio that preceded the R-1 was also made for JR by KO.
I have to say that KO servos are top notch products always at the forefront of tech.
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Old 03-22-2010, 08:59 AM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks


Here are the KO Propo 2.4 ghz instructions.

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Old 03-22-2010, 09:35 AM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

I have Futaba FASST and an original SPEKTRUM7 ch...both systems offer HUGE range with no difficulties in gas,electric and turbine powered planes...
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Old 03-22-2010, 10:20 AM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Well, next step is going to be trying 1.5V batteries then.

On a side note, does anyone know the differences between the KR-407S, KR-408S, and KR-409S receivers, other than the price?
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Old 03-22-2010, 11:00 AM
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Default RE: 2.4Ghz Range Sucks

Fosgate, so you assume all 2.4 sucks? You get what you pay for.
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