to fly even for the complete beginner, and yet fun for the
most weathered pilot
to be picky: the flip maneuver would benefit from being
triggered by a push button
is one thing for sure, there is no shortage of novelties
in the multicopters world nowadays. Estes, the well-known
rocket manufacturer, contributes to this ever-growing
market with distributing the Proto-X line of nano-quads.
The Proto-X was introduced a little over a year
ago, and surprised everyone by its amazingly small
size, and yet very stable flight behavior.
next generation and subject of this review, the
Proto-X SLT. It builds from the success of the Proto-X
and adds a couple of exciting features which includes
the ability to do flip maneuvers. That is a promise
for a lot of fun!
was impressed with the talented pilots who were
able to perform a flip on the previous generation
(Proto-X). I tried many time, and lets say that
the success ratio was very low. Here is a nano-quad
that offers to do it for me.
box is not large, and yet it is huge in comparison to the
size of the model. This is actually to fit the larger-than-usual
remote provided with the quadcopter.
kit comes complete with the quadcopter, remote, manual,
connector to charge the imbedded battery.
tiny quadcopter will amaze by its size. Hard to believe
that such a small device can fly! Of course, the model is
ready to fly out of the box - no assembly required.
$39.99 Ready to Fly (at time
Proto-X SLT makes the world's smallest quadcopter
even more incredible! A larger 2.4GHz radio
with dual rates is just the start; now, pilots
can execute flips and other mild-to-wild maneuvers
with a single button-push.
Auto-Upright system keeps the Proto-X SLT
stable in any flight condition. Toss the quad
in the air, and Auto-Correcting Technology
keeps it level. Even beginners can fly the
Proto-X SLT with complete success!
colorful body is designed for easy LiPo battery
installation and replacement. Colorful LEDs
make it easy to see the Proto-X SLT in any
since it comes with the SLT protocol built-in,
pilots can fly this cool quadcopter with popular
radio systems like the Tactic® TTX650.
always, the Proto-X SLT comes with a USB charger
and four spare rotor blades. All you need
to add are four "AAA" batteries.
Dimensions:1.8 in x 1.8 in
(45 mm x 45 mm)
Requires:4 "AAA" batteries
Proto-X SLT is built around the control board, which doubles
as the mechanical structure for the quad's arms. Very simple
and clever, as it makes for a light and yet very rigid model.
The battery is pre-mounted and doesn't need to be disconnected
to be charged. A micro-switch located under the quad is used
to enable and cut the power.
was very pleased to see that the Proto-X SLT came with
a "human-size" remote, and not a tiny controller
we usually see. This makes the flying experience much
four required AAA batteries are not provided, so make
sure you have some on hand if you want to fly right
The Estes Proto-X SLT doesn't need a large area to fly
in. Any bedroom or living room will do just fine. It
was off the top of the workbench that the Proto-X SLT
used for a lauch pad for the first take offt, and then
off to tour the rest of the house.
The first impression was great, the model showed impressive
stability in the standard flight mode. The quadcopter
showed a little bit of drift on the pitch and roll axis,
but it is perfectly locked around the yaw axis. The
drift can be corrected with the trim. I found the model
very easy to maneuver and the drift didn't really impede
the precision. If the drift is not acceptable, the manual
describes a procedure to calibrate the sensors.
In the standard mode, the Proto-X SLT will not
tilt more than approximately 20 or 30 degrees in all
directions and also limits the acceleration in similar
manner. The quadcopter is capable of keeping a constant
altitude while traveling, even if the pilot adjusts
the throttle for a finer control.
is the first challenge a new multirotor pilot has to
face; controlling the throttle. Lowering altitude is
always much faster than climbing, and the pilot has
to apply positive throttle input to raise the quadcopter,
and be more gentle and subtle with the stick when lowering
the machine. The Proto-X SLT is no different than any
other quadcopter in that aspect.
The EXPERT mode is where the next level of fun resides,
as the flip-a-bility is now enabled! To perform a flip,
the pilot just has to move the stick halfway in one
direction and then quickly in the opposite direction.
The quadcopter will do a flip around pitch and roll
axis. With no throttle management, the quad will easily
lose 3 to 5 feet in this process. It is best to increase
the throttle just before the maneuver and reduce it
once the flip is completed.
Estes Proto-X SLT
Proto-X SLT addresses a larger public than
just the RC community. Its stability and ease
to fly makes it a very good first flying
machine. It is very fun to fly with little
to no risk to the environment, quad, pilot,
or the spectators. The Proto-X SLT will take
a lot of abuse before giving up. During the
course of this review, we didn't replace any
components, and the quadcopter hit more
than a few walls! Most of the time, one or
two of the propellers will pop off after a
crash, and it is a simple job to snap it back
on the shaft...... and go flying again.
With 2 to 3 minutes of flight time, the autonomy
is on par with what would be expected for
a model of this size. The flight time tends
to decrease with the number flights, and after
about 10-15 recharges it was much closer to
2 minutes than 3. We haven't replaced the
battery, but it would be a simple process.
nano-quadcopter Proto-X SLT is a good machine,
fun to fly and robust. It comes with what might
be the best remote of all nano-size quadcopter
currently available. All these characteristics,
combined with a very affordable price makes
it a must-have for guaranteed fun!
The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products like the one featured in the review.