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What radio for a new guy

Old 08-20-2006, 10:01 PM
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kilmerelrc
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Default What radio for a new guy

I have been flying RC for a little over a year. I have had a little stick time on a moto-glider and loved it. I would really like to get a little more serious about soaring though. I currently have and Airtronics VG6000 and have been running small electrics and a few pattern glow off of it. I began to look more closely at the sailplane type mixes on the radio and am not impressed.

I would like to purchase a new radio that will have the necessary features that will be advantageous for soaring. Any suggestions? I will probably start off with a couple of 2M sailplanes running 3-4 channels but would like to step up to a more advanced plane in the future. I would like to be able to run flaps, spoilers, ailerons and such.

I can only step up to a 6-8 ch radio on my current RC budget. In starting my search I saw the new Hitec Optic 6. In a glance this radio seems to have all of the basic soaring features on it but I would like some opinions. I need something decent but affordable. I will not be able to run out and grab the latest Multiplex or anything

Thanks Chris
Old 08-20-2006, 10:17 PM
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da Rock
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

6-8 channel radios are gonna be enough for a lifetime. My 8 channel JR does everything I would ever want to do. They've got a 7 channel that sounds like it's magic. Truth is, my 6 channel does too.

Once you get above the 4 channels, they're all going to offer pretty much complete capability and you're not really going to need 10 channels unless you plan to drop bombs and open the cockpit so the pilot figure can wave at the crowd.
Old 08-20-2006, 11:37 PM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Does anyone have any comments on the Hi-tec Eclipse 7? Even though this one has 7channels, is it sub-standard to the Hi-tec Optic 6 the newer radio? I've been looking at the Hi-tec Eclipse 7 and the Futaba 9c Super. Kind of apples and oranges in one way, but the Eclipse is a pretty good buy with Shift selectable and Synthesizer module for just over $200. Then the Futaba has more bells and whistles, but for the synthesizer module version you will give up $499.

Keith
Old 08-20-2006, 11:53 PM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

If your main interest is sailplanes, Airtronics or JR are the way to go. If you like to do a little of everrything, go with JR. If you want or need to save some money, buy a used JR347, 388, or 8103. All of them will do just about anything you could ever want as far as mixing, etc. I have flown contest sailplanes, Q 500 pylon racers, Giant Scale AT-6 race planes, and powered sport planes with my JR radios, and they not only accomodated everything I neede, but performed flawlessly for many years. I know it sounds like an advertisement for JR, but I don't work for them or sell them, and I did not get mine for free. Futaba makes great radios, but have never catered to the sailplane end of the market. I don't have any specific experience with Hi-tec transmitters, but I have had very good luck with their servos.

Good luck,

David Layne
Old 08-21-2006, 08:29 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy


ORIGINAL: kwmtrubrit

Does anyone have any comments on the Hi-tec Eclipse 7? Even though this one has 7channels, is it sub-standard to the Hi-tec Optic 6 the newer radio? I've been looking at the Hi-tec Eclipse 7 and the Futaba 9c Super. Kind of apples and oranges in one way, but the Eclipse is a pretty good buy with Shift selectable and Synthesizer module for just over $200. Then the Futaba has more bells and whistles, but for the synthesizer module version you will give up $499.

Keith

I have the 9C and I HAD and Eclipse. The Eclipse is not quite "there" as far as being a full house capable radio. It can do most of the functions but it's got some retarted programming and you have to jump through hoops to get it to do some things. The Optic is a little limited for full house stuff too. Great radio for smaller gliders but not so hot for 4 servo wing planes. The 9C will do nearly anything you want it to do. I have not found anything so far that I could not program with the 9C. I just used it to program a scale ship with 13 servos. It has 4 servos per wing and the 9C did just fine making it all wiggle correctly. The 9C does a lot more than the Eclipse 7 so comparing them price wise is silly. Yup the 9C costs more but you are getting functionality for that extra money. The price difference is not that much. I paid $329 for my 9C transmitter with synth module at Servocity, the Eclipse is about $210 for the trans and module.
Old 08-21-2006, 10:48 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

If you're main intrest is gliders for this radio then I have one suggestion. Find a TX that uses the old analog style of movable levers for the trims rather than the digital trims.

The reason is that gliders use the elevator trim as a main flight control... or at least you SHOULD be using it that way. With the movable levers you can feel the trim position and move it knowing how where and how far. With the no movement digital trim switches you have no idea where the trim is and I find that it's hard to click in what I want and it's slow to boot since it clicks the trim in with little pulses. GIve me a lever every time over this method.

The cause of my ranting on this is that I bought an Airtronics RD6000 at one of the model expos and because it was sort of a rushed purchase I didn't even notice that the trim "levers" were actually just a click switch.

For me this is such an important item for glider flying that I've modified all my other Tx's by drilling and inserting a long 2-56 screw into the elevator trim levers so that I can find it easily with my fingers and so that I have a better feel for how much trim I'm putting in while looking up.
Old 08-21-2006, 11:17 AM
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kilmerelrc
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

A friend of mine is currently selling an Airtronics Infinity 600 which has all of the programming features I need alone with the old analog trim levers. Do you have any comment on that radio.

Thanks Chris
Old 08-21-2006, 11:20 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

I'm thinking of getting the Optic 6 or eclipse 7. I 've always used hitec servos, receivers etc... And I'd really like to get the optic 6...
Any suggestions?
Old 08-26-2006, 10:54 PM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Here is what I recommend if you are serious about full house sailplanes, or scale sailplanes.

You can fly almost any plane on a 4 channel standard radio, so everything I talk about here is above and beyond that.

Support for a 4 servo wing is the first big item. This allows you to control each wing servo on its own channel. With this ability you can trim or reverse each servo, set its individual center and end points all from the radio. You can also change their nature and how they operate.

For example, with 4 servo wing control, you can have the flaps follow the ailerons for better roll performance on an aerobat, sport plane or 3D plane or hotliner sailplane. For thermal sailplane this can give you better control in thermals by providing lower drag roll.

Before I got my Futaba 9C, I flew my full house sailplane on a Hitec Prism 7X. This is an older radio but it works fine. Though it lacks some nice features I was able to fly the plane. Here are some things I lacked and why I went to a new radio. My experience may be helpful to your evaluation of your next radio.

The Hitec Prism 7X provides almost no ability to assign functions to my choice of switches,levers or dials. I was able to mix elevator to the flaps for landing but could only control them from a dial that was very inconveniently located. It worked but I didn't like the control or the location. I would have much preferred being able to control this from the throttle/airbrake stick. I could not assign that mix to the stick on the Prism 7X. I didn't like that.

The Prism 7X can't handle a 4 servo wing. So, I had to mount the flap servos differently then how I would have liked. I needed to align them so that they moved in the same direction. Since they were on the same channel, I could not reverse one from the radio. I could have purchased a servo reverser for about $25 but decided to save that toward a new radio. I used a Y cable to put them on one channel, 6. All the flap trimming had to be done from the control horns until I got them exactly right, then I could trim them together from the radio. However if I wanted to make any small adjustments to the individual flaps they had to be done on the plane. With 4 wing servo addressability, I can do them from the radio which is a more convenient method. But it didn't prevent me from flying the plane.

After researching the market the only 7 channel radio that I could find that had some 4 servo wing support, crow, and some limited switch assignability was the Hitec Eclipse 7. At the price is it is a great value and it offers some nice features like a removable channel module and the option of a channel synthesizer. It also supports shift select.

I was going to get the Eclipse. The price was right, around $180 and the feature set was good. Between its 7 model memories and the 3 on the Prism that would give me 10 model memories. That should be plenty.

However further research showed that if I was willing to push up $100 more I could go to an 8/9 channel radio, the Futaba 9C. This had much more flexible 4 wing servo control. It offered much more flexible switch/control assignment and it had unlimited model memory through removable memory cards. I was now up to 12 planes, so this seemed a good feature for me.

It also had a removable channel module and there is a channel synth option. In addition, it can handle two elevator servos should I ever get into serious aerobatics or larger 3D planes. And it seemed to offer more flexible programming overall. And two extra channels, while not needed now might come in handy in the future. As it turned out, a few months later, I ended up setting up a plane that will use all 9 channels and could actually use 10.

I later learned that some of the high end radios can handle 6 servo wings. Way more than I am ever likely to need, but just a point of information.

I went to the Futaba 9C because I am committed to sailplanes in a big way and want all the flexibility I can get. I also do some light contest flying. Nothing real serious, but enough to justify ( we really have to justify ) a more advance radio than what I had. And $100 more than the radio I was considering.

As you look over the features of new radios, here are the mixes I would look for in the priority I would want them for full house sailplanes. Others might disagree with the order, but we all have our preferences.

Elevator to flap compensation, sometimes called landing mode - very helpful on landing. The safer and easier you can land, the more flights you can get in. When you pop the flaps, the elevator is mixed in to help keep the plane level. If the dial, switch or stick that is used is not conveniently located, as was the case on my Prism, this can be a pain.

Differential ailerons - the up aileron moves more than the down aileron - this requires the ailerons on two channels - Most, if not all computer radios can do this one. This helps reduce drag which allows the plane to fly more efficiently.

Rudder to aileron mixing. - automates coordinated turns which again goes to efficient flying. Usually you can override manually with the flip of a switch, or by moving the rudder stick.

Launch mode - for thermal sailplanes most pilots have a preset for flaps down, say 30%, ailerons down 15% and some elevator compensation up or down, depending on the plane. This maximizes the wings lift during launch at the expense of drag, but when you are going up the winch or hi-start you can afford the trade-off. Then flip the switch to return to normal flight before you zoom and release. I use this on every flight. This requires a minimum of 3 servos in the wing.

There are lots of others, but these are the four I would look for on any radio that I was going to consider for full house sailplanes. Here are a few other mixes that the 9C and higher radios can add.

Quad Ailerons/Quad Flaps - You can add the flaps to the ailerons so that the flaps move with, and coordinate with the ailerons This requires 4 wing servo capability. The flaps become extensions of the ailerons for more control surface movement. in sailplanes, sometimes the flaps are set at 50% of the aileron movement. Useful on sailplanes, very valuable on aerobats, pattern planes or 3D planes. For example, the extremely popular Hanger 9 Ultra Stick assumes you have this feature to create quad ailerons. You can fly the plane without it, but you won't be able to bring it to its full potential.

Flapperons - Ailerons can act as flaps or spoilers which can be helpful for landing
control. These are known as flapperons which is a change in assignment of the
surface from aileron behavior to flap or spoiler behavior. This requires two servos for
the ailerons. I use this on one of my slope gliders to help me set it down in the limited landing area that is typical at slope soaring sites.

Flapperons - flaps act like ailerons for planes that don't have ailerons. Found this idea being used on a R/E Flap sailplane. If you hit this link and read from post 49, you can see how this is used. Interesting idea.
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...16&page=4&pp=15

Camber Changing Trailing Edge - On sailplanes they use a mix where the
ailerons follow the flaps to move the whole trailing edge down for a camber
changing effect, essentially changing the shape of the wing while it
is flying. This changes the glide characteristics of the plane.
Again, a minimum of three wing servos is needed to do this.

Crow/Butterfly - Sailplanes use this for precision landing. Both ailerons go up while the flaps go down. Usually the elevator is mixed in to handle any tendency of the plane to balloon up or dive when you pull this mix. This really slows the plane down to help with precision landing. Typically this is assigned to the throttle/airbrake stick.

Flaps to Elevator - Some sailplane pilots mix the flaps to the elevator when they are in a thermal to create a flatter climb while in a thermal. You create more drag, but you get more lift. When you in the thermal it can be a good trade-off. Some set two or three levels of this. I have been playing with it.

Read this only if you like to dabble in deeper technical stuff. This article
is on advanced set-up of a full house sailplane. Definitely not something a
beginner, or even a many experienced airplane pilots need to do. This is more
for competition pilots, but if you like to look at some of the advanced stuff,
this might be fun. It is a translation, so take your time as you read it.
http://www.gliders.dk/triming_and_s...ider_wi_eng.htm

So, you can go wild spending on a radio to get all the bells and whistles. You don't have to. You can enjoy most planes with less than every feature available. However if you are going to make a purchase in the near future, go into it informed so that you don't find yourself saying, "if I had only spent a few more $$ I could have had a radio that would carry me a lot further".

SUMMARY

If I was going to get a low cost computer radio to fly sailplanes, the Hitec Optic 6 would get the job done.

The Eclipse 7 is getting old, but it does offer 4 servo wing capabilites at a very good price. It will get the job done.

The Futaba 9C Super gets you into a pretty good set of capabilites for about $300. If you can stretch to this, do it.

If you have a larger budget, the sailplane radios I would love to have are the JR 9303, the Evo 9 or the Airtronics Stylus. They are more expensive than the 9C but they are better sailplane radios.

So, what is your budget?
Old 08-27-2006, 05:26 AM
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ProScaleRc
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

If you think you are going to continue the hobby for years to come, don't waste your time on a cheapy. You'll get sick of it in before the years over. My opinion is, buy a good one from the start or you'll end up p[aying for two units in one year. I love JR and I'm buying a Synth 9X on wednesday to replace my 3810... but for value go with a Futaba 9C.
Old 08-27-2006, 10:57 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Hey,

Take a look at this.
I thought of getting any 6 channle CHEAP radio and I foud out this.

Tower hobbies 6 channle radio.

http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...I=LXLDP9**&P=0

Futabas 6 ch. radio

http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...I=LXHYL0**&P=0

Now, look at the pictures and compare the radios. They are exactly the same! Cost is only 50 bucks lower.

Any opinions?
Old 08-27-2006, 11:14 AM
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aeajr
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

The tower radio is a bad value and has less fetures than the radio that kilmerelrc has now.

The Futaba is only slightly better, but is for helicopters.
Old 08-27-2006, 11:18 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Why is it bad value?
Old 08-27-2006, 11:26 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

ORIGINAL: SS2P

Why is it bad value?
To put a plane in the air you will need servos, a receiver, some misc stuff
and of course, the radio. Let's see how the new packages shape up as
compared to buying a used radio or a radio alone and getting the servos
and receiver/crystal separately


Futaba 6EXAS - $160 ( The more advanced version of the Tower radio)
http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bi...I=LXJUV7**&P=ML

3 micro servos--------------------------------$15 each $45
1 micro receiver + crystal for small electrics ------------ $70
Misc other stuff in the package ------------------------ $20

Total for components $135

Cost for radio, charger, battery = $25 for an 6 channel entry level computer
radio - WOW!

====================================
Maybe you like Airtronics better

Airtronics VG 6000 $170 ( same class - This is what he has now )
http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bi...&I=LXEUY5**&P=7

2 micro servos ------------------------------- $15 each $30
1 Micro receiver + crystal ------------------------------ $65
1 Electronic Speed Control ----------------------------- $25
Misc stuff --------------------------------------------- $20

$140 for the above - you are going to need them anyway!

Radio, charger, battery = $30 for an entry level 6 channel computer radio.
REALLY!

===========================

Maybe you want a little more feature rich radio
This would be a step up in terms of sailplane features form the VG 6000 or the Futaba 6 EXAS or the Tower 6EX


Hitec Optic 6 - $220
http://www.hobby-lobby.com/hitec.htm

2 micro servos ----------------------------$15 each $30
Electron 6 micro receiver + crystal ( my favorite)---- $65
Misc other stuff in the package --------------------- $20

Total for components $115

Cost for radio, charger Battery = $105 Not bad for a midrange 6 channel
computer radio!

This radio blows the Tower radio away for less money!
===================

Questions?
Old 08-27-2006, 11:26 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Oh yea,
I also wanted to ask whats the difference between PCM and FM radios?

Paul
Old 08-27-2006, 08:05 PM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Your right. I didn't notice all that stuff
How about Futabas 7C? I've been looking at it now and I really like the features. I will get that with all the stuff (rx, 4 servos etc.. ) It looks like its similar to the 9C and just a little cheaper. Aeajr, what do you think, would this be a good radio if I want to fly Parkflyers (almost all of them including pylon racers, 3d, slow fly), gliders and hotliners plus advanced sailplsnes like the spirit 100.
Please give me some advice [X(]

Thanks,
Paul
Old 08-28-2006, 08:55 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Radios either provide FM/PPM or FM/PPM AND FM/PCM transmission. You need a receiver to match.

Read this thread to learn more:
http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_44...tm.htm#4473239


ORIGINAL: SS2P

Your right. I didn't notice all that stuff
How about Futabas 7C? I've been looking at it now and I really like the features. I will get that with all the stuff (rx, 4 servos etc.. ) It looks like its similar to the 9C and just a little cheaper. Aeajr, what do you think, would this be a good radio if I want to fly Parkflyers (almost all of them including pylon racers, 3d, slow fly), gliders and hotliners plus advanced sailplsnes like the spirit 100.
Please give me some advice [X(]

Thanks,
Paul
YOu mention the Spirit 100, which is unusual in that it has both flaps and spoilers. You can do this on the Optic 6 by putting the spoilers on channel 3, the throttle stick, but you won't have any compensation. Or you could put them on the same channel as the flaps, but then you would lose camber control as the spoilers would come up when you used flaps. For the Spirit 100, specifically, I would use the 7C over the Optic 6, but there really may not be much of a difference.

Neither radio supports a 4 servo wing.


How do the Hitec Optic 6 and the Futaba 7C compare?

Comparison Chart ( provided by Hitec )
http://hitecrcd.com/Radios/Optic%206...on%20chart.htm

Hitec Optic 6
http://www.hitecrcd.com/Radios/OPTIC.htm
review
http://www.rcgroups.com/links/index....at=281&id=4451
6 channel, 8 Model Memory, Model naming, Spectra channel synth option,
Change
channel module, shift select, switch assignability, flight modes, 2 user
programmable mixes, and a variety of standard mixes.

Futaba 7C
http://www.futaba-rc.com/radios/futj69.html
Review
http://www.rcuniverse.com/magazine/a...article_id=321
Review - also compares it to the 9C, and the JR 6102
http://www.rcgroups.com/links/index.php?id=4405
7 channels, 10 Model Memory, Model Naming, Switch Assignability, Flight
Modes,
3 user programmable mixes and a selection of standard mixes.


The Optic goes for about $130 and the 7C for about $150. That is not a big
difference, so I don't think price should be the deciding factor here. For
15% the Futaba gives you an extra channel and 2 more model memories. Worth
it? Up to you.

Which to buy? Unless you know of some specific need, both are great. Here
are the major differences that I see.

HITEC OPTIC 6

8 model memories - plenty for some, not enough for others

Select shift - fly virtually any receiver - pos or neg shift - nice if you
are buying used equipment.

You can change the channel on the Optic 6 by changing the channel module or
you can buy it with the Spectra channel synthesizer so you can fly any
channel. This could be valuable if you fly in contests or at a crowded
field where there are a bunch of guys on your channel. Just change to an unused
channel and change the crystal in your receiver. Big value for some, not for
others. The Spectra channel synth module does pull more power, so battery
runs down faster. You might want to buy a second battery.

Hitec is coming out with a 2.4 GHz module for the Optic 6
http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_3986179/tm.htm

Programming menus are rich but a bit cryptic in my opinion - you will get
used to it.

6 channels - you can never have too many but 6 is enough for most people.
R/E/F/A/A/Throttle or Tow release would be 6, for example. If you wanted
landing gear too, you would have to put both ailerons on one channel. How
many are good enough for you?

Good mix of features


FUTABA 7C

10 model memories - 2 more than Optic- nice when you get to your 9th and
10th flyable plane. How many is enough for you?

Negative shift only - Fly Futaba, Hitec, GWS, Berg, FMA and other neg shift
receivers - lots of choices, but you can't fly pos shift receivers. If you
are buying all new equipment, it doesn't matter. If you buy used receivers,
then just make sure they are negative shift.

Fixed Channel - This is not an issue for most people, but some people like
to be able to change the channel. This would be important if you have a lot
of people on your channel at your field, or if you are flying contests where
they only allow one person per channel. Optic can change channel with the right
options; 7C can't. Do you care?

Programming - I think the Futaba menus and process are a bit more friendly
than the Hitec, but you get used to either one.

7 channels - You can't have too many. Some day you may find you want that
7th channel. R/E/F/A/A/Throttle/Gear or tow release = 7 On the Optic you would
have to make some kind of compromise since you don't have 7 channels.
Could come in handy some day and offers greater flexibility. I have a plane I am
preparing that needs 8 so neither would be enough.

SUMMARY

Both are good radios with lots of features at a moderate price. These are
the big chunky differences that I see as important.

Note that neither radio supports a 4 servo wing set-up, so you typically
have to have both flaps on one channel. Normally this is not an issue, but if
you get into advanced aerobatics, patterns, 3D or more advanced sailplane
set-ups a 4 servo wing capability becomes more valuable.

The lowest priced radio I know of that has some 4 servo wing capabilities is
the Hitec Eclipse 7, at about $180, then the Futaba 9C, which has a richer 4
wing servo capability, at about $280.

If you don't have a preference between the Optic 6 and the 7C, then see what
kind of radios are being flown by your club or your friends. By having a
similar radio to your friends, you can get help with set-up more easily. If
they are mostly Futaba, then go Futaba. If mostly Hitec, then go Hitec. If
you don't mind going it alone, then this doesn't matter.

What does your local hobby store sell. If he gives you a good price, then
buy there if you can get local support.

Both have good service and good reputations.

No bad choice here.

What you need to know about receivers:
http://www.*********.com/forums/radi...ers-12151.html
Old 08-28-2006, 09:12 PM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

I think I 've chosen Optic 6. I really like that it can change the shift and channle. By the way, what do you mean by 4 servo wing capilities? Do you mean that 4 servos per the whole wing? Sure, the 7C has more channles, more memory but optic still has a lower price + I think I will those features even more than some kind of retracts, I fly parkflyers mostly, anyway.As I looked at the chart (compare hitec, futaba) than I noticed that 7C has almost the same many mixxes and programming features than hitec, or hitec had even more!

I really appreciate your examples and help.
Paul
Old 08-28-2006, 10:24 PM
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aeajr
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy


ORIGINAL: SS2P

By the way, what do you mean by 4 servo wing capilities? Do you mean that 4 servos per the whole wing? Sure, the 7C has more channles, more memory but optic still has a lower price + I think I will those features even more than some kind of retracts, I fly parkflyers mostly, anyway.As I looked at the chart (compare hitec, futaba) than I noticed that 7C has almost the same many mixxes and programming features than hitec, or hitec had even more!

I really appreciate your examples and help.
Paul
4 servo wing refers to the ability to have the 4 wing servos each on their own channel. Neither the 7C or the Optic 6 are able to do this. They both require you to put the flaps on a Y cable.

My futaba 9C can address each wing servo on its own channel.
The Hitec Eclipse can tool

JR 9303, Evo 9, Airtronics Stylus are other examples.
Old 08-29-2006, 09:55 PM
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Eplane65
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

Although I'm flying my sailplane with my VG6000, I also have an Optic 6 that I've been using on seven other airplanes. It has the Spectra module and near as I can tell, this can be programed to do any sailplane trick that you need to do. Some of my friends have JR9303s, Mulitplex, Airtronics Stylus transmitters, but I really can't see the advantage of them. You can buy 3 Optic 6 transmitters for what one of these cost. Guess you have to make a decision. Any of these units are good quality pieces of equipment.
Old 08-29-2006, 11:12 PM
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ORIGINAL: Eplane65

Although I'm flying my sailplane with my VG6000, I also have an Optic 6 that I've been using on seven other airplanes. It has the Spectra module and near as I can tell, this can be programed to do any sailplane trick that you need to do. Some of my friends have JR9303s, Mulitplex, Airtronics Stylus transmitters, but I really can't see the advantage of them. You can buy 3 Optic 6 transmitters for what one of these cost. Guess you have to make a decision. Any of these units are good quality pieces of equipment.
OK, we are going to get into philosophy now. Hang on boys and girls.

The Optic 6, the 7C and similar rados are very capable radios, but they can't touch the others you name. You don't see the difference because you don't know about the "tricks" that these other radios can perform. And if you did, you might not know what to do with those tricks if you had them. I am only now learning to fully exploit my 9C and my 9C exceeds the Optic and the 7C by a good margin.

This all becomes a question of degree. How much can you invest in time, money and how committed are you to getting evey last bit of performance out of yourself and your plane. You don't need a Ferarri to go to the market, but if you got the bucks, why not! But the Taurus will get you there just fine!

To lean to use complex tools takes time and commitment. But it is not necessary to enjoy soaring. If you just want to have a great time flying you don't need a JR 9303. But if you can afford it, get it. I would.

I have tried to classify these radios in a sort of tiered structure. Each tier cost more and does more.

Futaba 6 EXAS, Hitec Flash 5SX and the like are entry level. They will fly a full house sailplane.

Optic 6, 7C, 6102 and the like are midrange sport radios. They can do more, offer more flexability. They will fly a full house sailplane and let you exploit more of what it can do.

Futaba 9C, Evo 7 and others are what I consider advanced sport radios or entry level competition radios. They take you further along in flexability and "tricks"

JR 9303, Evo 9, Stylus are competition grade radios. They will let you wring every bit of performance you can get out of that full house sailplane, BUT, you, the pilot, have to know how to do it. They won't make you a great pilot. They will just place more tools at your finger tips. multiple flight modes, all kinds of camber combinations, mixes on mixes, and on and on.

So, it all comes back to the begining:

How much can you spend?

What kinds of flying and what kinds of planes do you wish to fly?

What do you hope to accomplish?

No matter what you buy, there will be one that was just a little more $$ that has just a little more capability. And 6 months from know, "oh why didn't I wait and get that new one?".

Fogedaboutit!

Figure the budget, buy the radio, fly the plane! Enjoy!
Old 08-30-2006, 08:42 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

There are a couple of radios that ought to be mentioned.
JR has just come out with a new JR7202 (synth) that's selling for around $300. It's got a number of features that used to be found only in more expensive radios. It is an excellent value for the money. The synthesizer design at that price with those features is a value.

JR is still selling JR8103s. I've got one and so far, I've yet to see need anything that it can't do. I considered the JR9303 at the same time I looked at the 8103 and assumed there was some things I might not be able to do with the 8103 that the 9303 does. Yet to find any. I bought mine at around $350 and later added the synthesizer module. I use the synth often, as I fly at 3 different fields and would always be in conflict with a fixed frequency. As it is, with the new JR RX's that don't require a crystal, (~$70), I pick out an unsued frequency, click it into the TX, turn on the RX, press it's button to aquire the channel, and fly. The 8103 price puts it into the list in it's own slot.
Old 08-30-2006, 10:56 AM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

darock,

Thanks for the report on the JR radios. I am not as familiar with the JR line as I am with Hitec and Futaba. I clearly need to do more investigation on the JR stuff.
Old 09-02-2006, 08:27 PM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

I'm no expert, but I am also a certifiable new guy. I bought the 9303 for my first sailplane (my first airplane), a six servo 3 meter and I find it easy to use and certainly plenty of bells and whistles for when skills improve. Love the ability to switch to various modes with a throw of the switch. I don't have anyone to learn with, so I can try new settups by flying in a mode that I know works and flip switch into something new (new wing camber, flap to aileron mixing etc.) and if I get the setup wrong, its just a flip of the switch back to setup I know works.
Old 09-14-2006, 08:19 PM
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Default RE: What radio for a new guy

if you have the $$. get the profi 4000. last radio you will ever need. after playing the upgrade game for many years i would have saved the $1000.00 price tag of the 4000 easily. glad I got one.

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