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New Powerbox Mercury SR2

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New Powerbox Mercury SR2

Old 11-21-2022, 06:45 AM
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Dave Wilshere
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Default New Powerbox Mercury SR2

The new PB Mercury SR2 is available now. I think it will become the new standard for a lot of jet modellers (certainly in the U.K.) the old Mercury was really popular and the new version gains a channel and lots of features.The PowerBox Mercury SR2 is your first choice when you need a small, high-performance power supply unit with maximum functionality. All the features which are usually the preserve of the larger power supply units are present in the compact PowerBox Mercury SR2: iGyro, servo matching, unrestricted channel assignment and even a door sequencer: it really is a complete system!

The PowerBox Mercury SR2 provides 16 freely assignable outputs with servo matching, i.e. the travel of each channel can be adjusted at five points. If you fly models with large control surfaces, in which individual control surfaces are actuated by two servos, the unique auto-match function can be used to match both servos to each other accurately in a matter of seconds.

The integral iGyro software requires a sensor unit in the form of an iGyroSAT; with this it can address and adjust three aileron, three elevator and three rudder functions individually. The Setup Assistant simplifies the initial adjustments to the gyro system, reducing the time required to just a few minutes. The first time the system is used, the Assistant gathers basic information regarding wing and tail format and the vector control system - if present. A complex model matrix then works in the background, calculating which servo needs to be connected to which output, at the same time linking the corresponding gyro function. A wide range of additional Expert settings offers total freedom, enabling you to fine-tune the gyro system to your particular requirements.
In addition the GPSIII or PBS-TAV (True Airspeed Vario) can also be connected to the FastTrack input, making it possible to vary gyro gain according to airspeed. All GPS or TAV information is even available for telemetry at a suitable transmitter!

The PowerBox Mercury SR2 supplies a regulated output voltage which can be set to 6.0V or 7.8V. The two voltage regulators offer generous capacity thanks to the machined aluminium heatsink on the top and bottom surfaces, enabling the unit to cope effortlessly with the current-hungry servos used in 3D machines.

The integral door sequencer is capable of controlling one undercarriage system and up to three wheel doors. If the Setup Assistant is used, it takes just a few minutes to learn the end-points of door travel, while three pre-defined modes cover the vast majority of undercarriage processes. Once initially set up, the timing of the process can be fine-tuned manually to any values you wish.

For PowerBox and Jeti pilots it is possible to control and adjust virtually every* aspect of the PowerBox Mercury SR2 from your transmitter! Full telemetry for battery and receiver data is present for all supported systems.



*with the exception of the door sequence and Setup Assistant




Old 11-21-2022, 10:12 AM
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Len Todd
 
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Some thoughts to consider:

I have several older Mercury SRS and other PBoxes. I love them. They are excellent units.

However, because the SR2 is limited to only two serial receivers, I recently bought another Mercury SRS for a spare versus ordering & waiting for the Mercury SR2. Given all the wiring with electric retracts, electric brakes, nav lights, etc. and all the carbon fiber they add to composite aircraft, I am a firm believer of having at least three serial receivers, especially in the smaller composite airframes. Also, it is hard to get all three possible antenna orientations covered with only two remotes. Lastly, with larger planes, the farther away we tend to fly them. There are lots of variables to consider when downsizing receiver capability that you know works!

I do like that the fact that the SR2 is smaller than the SRS and the high voltage is upped a bit too. But I prefer the built-in gyro of the SRS. Having to order a separate gyro opens the door to more supply chain delays for a complete setup (e.g. SR2s available but the gyros not available, etc.) Anyone suffered through a supply chain issue lately? Also, with the prices between the SRS and the SR2 with the optional gyro relatively the same, it hardly makes sense to have a separate gyro. For example, in spite of the smaller SR2 unit you now need more space to mount the separate gyro. But maybe there is some other advantage that I am NOT seeing here? Maybe some folks who would buy a SR2 would not want a gyro? To me it looks like PBox sacrificed the internal gyro to save some space which created the need for more deck space. But maybe it is a design or profit issue (e.g. one gyro fits all, etc.)

For me the jury is still out on the SR2. As these units start showing up at our field, time will tell if 2 vs. 3 Rxers makes a difference. In the meantime, my Grandpa taught me to never buy a first run production model anyway. But coming from PBox, I am sure the hardware is great. However, my experience with their flawed terminal program necessary to update PBox software was doable but rather frustrating to say the least!
Old 11-21-2022, 10:22 AM
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rcjetsaok
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I assume they are still Spektrum compatible with added satellites ?
Old 11-21-2022, 10:35 AM
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Yes, SRXL2 satellites
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Old 11-21-2022, 11:17 AM
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Dave Wilshere
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Hardly anyone flys Spektrum in turbine models in the U.K. until the sponsored pilots started coming to our meetings, we rarely saw anyone with one!
I have the oldest flying Spektrum radio in the U.K., I flew it the day 2.4 became legal in the U.K…memory says November 2006, it’s been faultless since-but obviously JR Propo were heavily involved then.
Two SRXL Rx’s should in theory be as good as dual Futaba/Jeti/DMSS JR etc. scattering remotes around an airframe should no longer be necessary.
Old 11-21-2022, 11:26 AM
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There's a lot in the US
Old 11-21-2022, 12:09 PM
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Len Todd
 
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I too initially wondered about the use of Spektrum remote Rxers. The SRXL2s have 4 wires. The PBox has 3 pins in the input ports.

As I understand it, you can purchase or quickly fabb up an adapter harness that just eliminates the 4th wire, which eliminates the telemetry circuit from the Rxr.

Horizon lists it as - PowerBox Systems - PBS9192 - but does not have a picture.
Old 11-21-2022, 12:31 PM
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This is for the Pioneer, I assume it to be the same,

https://www.powerbox-americas.com/pr...6e640355&_ss=r

Last edited by BarracudaHockey; 11-21-2022 at 12:33 PM.
Old 11-21-2022, 01:05 PM
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rcjetsaok
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Are the older 3 wire “X” satellite’s compatible and are they still available from Spektrum ???
Old 11-21-2022, 01:23 PM
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Len Todd
 
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Originally Posted by BarracudaHockey View Post
There's a lot in the US
With over 100 members, we have over 30 jet pilots. We have 4 -10 events annually. As the CD, I pay attention to what is being flown and frequently get involved with solving apparent RF issues. Most of our pilots are using Spektrum IX or DX Txers. Maybe 5 regularly visiting jet pilots use CORE. Only two members use Futaba. I think I have one, maybe two, still using Jeti. 95+% of our non-jet guys are using Spektrum. With the unavailability of Spektrum Powersafe Rxers for so long, some of the Spektrum guys have converted to PBox with Spektrum remotes. I have been running PBox with Spektrum remotes since PBox first came to the U.S. market, say maybe, ... 7 or 8 years ago? I have PBox with Spektrum remotes in several piston powered planes and all the current and past jets.

For me after having worked with RF for 50+ years the bottom line is, all things being equal, 97% of RF signal is theoretically lost when there is antenna cross-polarization. To have aligned antenna polarization at all times, in the upper RF bands one needs three antennas oriented differently from each other. Yes, there are other factors that may help reduce the loss (e.g. ground reflection, etc.). However, one can't count on other RF factors to mitigate that loss consistently. Also, when there is a lot of carbon fiber or other concentrated conductive materials (e.g. wires,) I use 4 remotes with that 4th remote well positioned in a vertically polarized position several inches from any conductive materials. Never had an RXer RF failure in a large plane ... Knock on wood!

To me reducing Rxer capability by 33% (e.g. downgrading from 3 to 2 Rxers) or more is an unnecessary risk. That risk affects what components I use. Now, once the SR2 proves the risk is not present or tolerable, then I may invest in it, especially if that is all I can get. At that point I may decide to switch to another brand to take advantage of their dual band systems, etc. Once optimized, IMO frequency diversification appears to be better way to go. But these dual band systems are currently overly complex, overly expensive, and transition is overly difficult for a long time Spektrum user. Fortunately, I am not there just yet. However, I have seen a couple of our guys try switching to dual band systems and at least two have switched back to Spektrum.

So, ... there you have my not-so-humble opinion.

Oh, ... Good write up the SR2 Dave!


Old 11-21-2022, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by BarracudaHockey View Post
This is for the Pioneer, I assume it to be the same,

https://www.powerbox-americas.com/pr...6e640355&_ss=r
There is a good picture of it.

I had to fabb one up for the SRXL2 on one of my hellis. It was not difficult at all. I just cut off one end of the OEM's harness, crimpped on 3 JR pins and slipped the pins into the 3 place JR housing. You end up NOT using the telemetry wire. I used an old three wire harness to figure out which wire to not use.
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Old 11-21-2022, 01:44 PM
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I’ve done a lot of testing with a single Rx/Single aerial Core PBR7 receiver in a 6s EDF including placing the aerial so it’s screened by the 6s pack. The Core radio allows you to see Rx performance in all these tests. I’ve pushed the model further away than ‘normal’ at a safe site and although I have seen some low figures, I have never lost control. Core has dual Tx aerials in the handle, I think the later Spekky stuff moves away from the DX single aerial wire in the plastic stump set up.
Old 11-21-2022, 02:55 PM
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I guess my question should have been,

Is this new Mercury shown in this thread compatible with the good old Spektrum DX-18 Transmitter’s with the the X satellite receivers , and if so, how many satellites are required ??
if not, why.

Thanks !!,

Dan
Old 11-21-2022, 09:55 PM
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Originally Posted by rcjetsaok View Post
I guess my question should have been,

Is this new Mercury shown in this thread compatible with the good old Spektrum DX-18 Transmitter’s with the the X satellite receivers , and if so, how many satellites are required ??
if not, why.

Thanks !!,

Dan
Dan

No, not with DSM-2 type Sats-JR Propo or Spektrum. Only SRXL2 Spektrum

Len the adapter lead PB sell is the same.


Dave
Old 11-22-2022, 05:38 AM
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Originally Posted by rcjetsaok View Post
I guess my question should have been,

Is this new Mercury shown in this thread compatible with the good old Spektrum DX-18 Transmitter’s with the the X satellite receivers , and if so, how many satellites are required ??
if not, why.

Thanks !!,

Dan
2 of these and a DX18 or whatever dsmx radio
https://www.horizonhobby.com/product.../SPM4651T.html

and 2 of the cables I referenced above
Old 11-22-2022, 04:39 PM
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Long time heavy user of Spektrum, I'd like to switch but Lenn summed it up nicely. Plus I don't need full telemetry, the old countdown timer works fine for time in the air, plus I don't see any of these companies offering a full setup video tutorials ( I do see some tutorials) for some who's switching from Spekturm or another radio. Options are better than no option but if you want us make the switch plus its a huge investment in time has to be more on the support side. Everyone is different but that is my 1 cent in opinion
Old 11-22-2022, 09:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Len Todd View Post
However, because the SR2 is limited to only two serial receivers
Originally Posted by Len Todd View Post
To me reducing Rxer capability by 33% (e.g. downgrading from 3 to 2 Rxers) or more is an unnecessary risk.


People need to remember that the PB Dual receiver models actually contain two full blown individual recievers inside the one case. Not to be confused with say Futaba which only contain a single Rx in all their receiver housings and then proceed to switch the two antenna elements between the one Rx circuit.

So I think these Powerboxes are really designed to be used with their receivers as a primary feature which probably explains only having the 2 serial inputs.

By using 2 of the PB dual Rx models it is the same as using 4x remote Spektrum receivers ie you actually have 4 independent PB receivers available to you.

The Spektrum remotes just might provide a tad more flexibility from an installation perspective, however for 99% of use cases you can still orientate the two PB receiver antennas (per unit) in optimal RF locations.

I work in a RF related industry and have always liked Spektrum's idea of the remote receiver concept for larger craft. The only thing I don't really like is the more fragile cable connections which connect their remotes as compared to say a standard servo lead.

With PB receivers I now get the best of both...The remote aspect and a more robust physical connection to the remote receivers.

BTW... Also a long time JR/Spektrum user then Futaba and recently PowerBox.

Last edited by CostasV; 11-22-2022 at 09:28 PM.
Old 11-23-2022, 06:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave Wilshere View Post
Dan

No, not with DSM-2 type Sats-JR Propo or Spektrum. Only SRXL2 Spektrum

Len the adapter lead PB sell is the same.


Dave
Thank you Dave !!!! I appreciate it !!

Dan

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