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Old Oct 27, 2013, 09:15 PM
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Microheli with Spy Cam - Review

Hello friends

I want to share with you my experience with a micro spy helicopter, which integrates a video camera on board.

Its more a kind of toy-ish heli, but the video recording is a nice add for a heli this price.

This heli was buyed on www.dx.com, and as usual, it took 3 weeks to arrive to Ecuador. The packing was nice, and keep the inners of the box safe from the long travel.





A funny fact in the box it says that the heli includes 130 mega pixel camera LOL. Usually it happens in all the items produced in China, because of bad translators. Luckly, it didnt affect at all the performance of the heli.

Let me tell you some specs of this heli:
  • 3.5 Channel IR transmitter
  • Coaxial design, which makes it very stable at flight
  • 300Kpx image sensor, records video at 320x240 @ 25fps
  • Video is recorded in a 1GB SD card (included)
  • Includes battery, USB charger, spare blades, and USB card reader for download videos

Inside the box, the unit and the transmitter comes protected with a clear plastic cover. More protection for the heli in the long trip from the store to your home





The transmitter doesnt look cheap. It works with 6 AA batteries, and have an ON/OFF switch, a channel selector switch, a rotation calibrator, and a button for start and stop the camera. Pretty decent, but, the throtle stick has a return to zero spring, and that can make it a little bit odd to control the hovering of the heli.

Taking the unit outside the box, we can feel that its a little bit heavy for the size. the AUW of the unit is 150gr, including the SD card in the slot.



The camera board is locate under the heli, just over the landing gear. The camera points to the front of the heli and also is included a bright white led, for recording in dark spots. As I told you, the camera records in 320x240 px at 25fps. And as you can see in the video below, it records pretty decent in interiors.





The SD card slot is located in the back of the heli, making it easy to extract and plug in



As I told you before, included in the package is the USB battery charger, and USB card reader, for downloading the videos to your computer.



Before flight, you must be sure that the battery is fully charged. The heli took arround 15 mins to charge, so when it was ready, we took it for a first test.

My surprise, the unit never lift off the ground more than 30cm. I have heard about this issue in another microhelis, and this behave the same way. I think that this is caused by the fact that we are ar 2500m over sea level, and air is less dense here. Here is a video of the first flight. Notice that im at full throtle and the heli doesnt lift so much from the ground.

rc microhelicopter issue (0 min 59 sec)


The real issue is that for this altitude of my city, the heli needs to be more light. I took away a tail stabilizer, and weight located inside the canopy to make it lighter, and the heli weights nos 40 grams.... belive me, Now it can fly without any issue.



So, how does it record the video? Here is the proof of the camera performance. As I told you, it behaves very well considering the low resolution. The images are stable and are not so disturbed by the helicopter vibration

Prueba del micro helicóptero RC con cámara de video integrada (2 min 11 sec)


I really like this helicopter, but it needs to be tweaked out of the box for a correct flight. The only thing that I didnt like at all is the throtle stick issue. I will dissasemble the transmitter for remove that spring, and I will be happy

Its very recommended as a gift for your kids. It costs les than $50 in www.dx.com, and the shipping is free, so you can give it a try.
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