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Old Apr 09, 2013, 10:48 AM
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tank_kb's Avatar
United States, VA, Purcellville
Joined Nov 2011
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Question
Upgrading Spektrum TX

I currently have a Spektrum DX6i and am very interested in upgrading. I fly primarily airplanes - some heli. I am thinking of just going straight to the DX18 and passing over the 7S, 8, (10 of course).

Any thoughts or suggestions on this?
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 11:06 AM
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elfwreck's Avatar
United States, CA, Oakland
Joined Dec 2002
2,352 Posts
Hey now,
I always tell folks when bjuying a new radio always buy as much radio as you can afford. In fact I half jokingly suggest buying more than you can afford. Yes you get more channels, but you get better mixability anMy wife bought me a 10t for mother's day last years and I think it's more versital than my old Multiplex radios. Never thought I'd choose Spektrum over MPX but in this case...
Anyway you're thinking right on this issue. It's silly to buy less radio if you can afford more even if you don't think you can use all the nifty mixes and extra channels right now.. Someday you *will* find a need for that extra mixing capability and you'll be very glad you bought more radio.
RobII
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 11:25 AM
AndyKunz's Avatar
Illinois
Joined Sep 2001
25,256 Posts
You will find some differences between them, but the concepts and roller access will be very similar. You may start out feeling overwhelmed by all the new options, but you really won't need to know or use anything that you don't already do in the DX6i. In many cases the names and numbers will match (not all, but enough to get it started).

I encourage to hold one before you buy it. The ergo is different between them. You will definitely understand the difference in feel! The DX18 is NICE!

Anyway, as a Spektrum employee, I certainly appreciate that you are planning to stay with us.

Andy
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 11:26 AM
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United States, VA, Purcellville
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thanks elf
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 11:29 AM
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United States, VA, Purcellville
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Thanks Andy. I have held it, and even flew a buddies plane with his DX18. I instantly fell in love with the feel. I have rather large hands and it felt very comfortable. I know I WANT to get the transmitter but I just wanted some direction on whether to step up incrementally or just take the 800 dollar plunge
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 11:36 AM
AndyKunz's Avatar
Illinois
Joined Sep 2001
25,256 Posts
I'm biased, but if I had the option I would definitely go for the max. Like Rob said, some day you WILL find a use for it. Over in the Radios forum one of the guys (freechip) used to say the DX8 was way more than he needed, but now he's got a DX18 and has a plane where he used all the sequencers, all the channels, and almost all the mixes in a scale B-17.

Andy
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 12:04 PM
HAL... Open the damn doors!
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Miramar, Florida
Joined Jul 2007
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I'll chime in from a user perspective. My own TX history started with a JR 378X then 9303, moving to 2.4 with a DX7 and eventually a 12X upgraded to DSM2, I now own a DX18 and absolutely love it!

All of the radios I've owned in the past have had their pros and cons but the DX18 may be the first radio designed (IMO) by pilots and not engineers, who tried to interpret what the pilots needed. From the look and feel to the programming, the DX18 is a pilots radio with all the features you absolutely need and ones you didn't even know you needed before, like Balancing and a built in Sequencer.

Not only does it have 16 programmable mixes and programmable servo speed on every channel and user-assignable switches and channels (versus pre-assigned switches and channels) but the backup and restore option is to an included SD card, either a single model or the entire radio making it so convenient to backup and restore later. It's also easily firmware upgradable from the same SD card, something I never had with my previous radios without shipping for factory service.

Finally, it has telemetry, great for monitoring your RX battery all the way up to flight pack voltage/amperage/temperature or even integrating with your turbine ECU. I haven't found anything wrong with it yet other than a few minor adjustments to learning how certain features are grouped together (like servo settings, all under the same menu option), at first requiring a little time to learn but now looking back, far more intuitive than my old radio programming. I love it and for me it's a leap forward in design and features, Horizon engineers and pilots really put everything in this one!

Jack
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 01:14 PM
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United States, VA, Purcellville
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Wow! That is some endorsement. Well written, informative and experience with the product as well. Thank you very much for the time you put into this jfetter! I am becoming more assured about making this leap!
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 04:44 PM
Snappy Title On Backorder....
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United States, TX, Killeen
Joined Jun 2011
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I can chip in my experience as well. I started out back in the day with a Futaba Gold 4 channel AM, then the same in a 6 channel for a long time. Moved up to a JR X388 which I used for a number of years. X388 was a real pain to work with. Got out of flying for a few years due to several government sponsored trips to the sunny Middle East but when I got back to flying I decided to get new equipment. I started out with a DX6i that I flew with for about 2 years but when I started back into kits and scratch building I moved up to the DX8 which was/is a very nice radio. Recently I put together a big electric P-61 and had decided that the DX18 was really what I needed to do the more complex setups that I figured would be in the future. In my case I started with the DX6i because I wanted to get back into flying but wanted to keep the costs down since I wasn't sure if I wanted to keep at it. At that point the DX8 wasn't out either. By the time the 8 came out I was hooked back into it and promptly upgraded again before the 18 was out. As soon as the 18 came out I picked it up and have been happy since.

I've moved everything I have to the 18 except my micros which are still spread between the 6 and the 8 at the moment. The 18 flies everything from a Mini Ultrastik to my 16.5lb P-61 with lights, gear, full sequenced doors etc. If I were in your position I'd go straight for the 18 and be done with it. It's an excellent radio with loads of features, easy to use programming, very flexible to configure and nice weight and ergo. I certainly agree the 18 seems to be a radio that has been conceptually designed be the end user so to speak.

End of shameless DX18 plug.
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 10:06 PM
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United States, TX, Fort Worth
Joined Jun 2000
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Color me a major DX18 fan. A really, really great radio, with great features, great quality and great support.

If you can swing it, get it and you will never look back.
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 10:34 PM
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United States, CO, Parker
Joined Feb 2013
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Anything above the DX6I is a joke to me and a waste of money. Your flying a airplane. What more do you need than the DX6I. Not even a real plane has the options for anything above. You fly left,right,down,up,gear,flaps, and some adjustments with the DX6I. I will never upgrade and will be as happy as everybody else with there 1,000.00 Tx. How easy do you want flying to be? There has to be some challenge there.
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 11:07 PM
Heli's rule!
dacaur's Avatar
Midvale, Utah, USA
Joined Mar 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cessna20122013 View Post
Anything above the DX6I is a joke to me and a waste of money. Your flying a airplane. What more do you need than the DX6I. Not even a real plane has the options for anything above. You fly left,right,down,up,gear,flaps, and some adjustments with the DX6I. I will never upgrade and will be as happy as everybody else with there 1,000.00 Tx. How easy do you want flying to be? There has to be some challenge there.
A better TX isn't about making the plane "easier" to fly. (you probably don't use expo either, right? because that would make it too easy to fly....) There are things you can do with a high end radio that the DX6i simply cannot do. There are types of planes you can fly with a DX18 or even a DX8 that are simply impossible to fly with a DX6i. Just one example out of many, A glider with dual split ailerons just isn't possible to fly to its potential, if at all, with a DX6i, and is certainly more of a challenge to fly than anything your DX6i can handle....

If you are happy with the DX6i, that's awesome. Whats NOT awesome is how you are looking down your nose at anyone that doesn't think exactly like you... But hey, if it makes you feel cool, more power too ya.... We will just quietly feel sad for you....

P.S. Saying "I will never want to upgrade my transmitter again" is a mistake most of us make at least once.... some many times.... Get a year or two of flying under your belt and see how you feel.... 3 months isnt all that long.....
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Old Apr 09, 2013, 11:29 PM
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United States, CO, Parker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dacaur View Post
A better TX isn't about making the plane "easier" to fly. (you probably don't use expo either, right? because that would make it too easy to fly....) There are things you can do with a high end radio that the DX6i simply cannot do. There are types of planes you can fly with a DX18 or even a DX8 that are simply impossible to fly with a DX6i. Just one example out of many, A glider with dual split ailerons just isn't possible to fly to its potential, if at all, with a DX6i, and is certainly more of a challenge to fly than anything your DX6i can handle....

If you are happy with the DX6i, that's awesome. Whats NOT awesome is how you are looking down your nose at anyone that doesn't think exactly like you... But hey, if it makes you feel cool, more power too ya.... We will just quietly feel sad for you....

P.S. Saying "I will never want to upgrade my transmitter again" is a mistake most of us make at least once.... some many times.... Get a year or two of flying under your belt and see how you feel.... 3 months isnt all that long.....
give me any Tx I'll fly the hell out of anything!!
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Old Apr 10, 2013, 12:41 AM
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United States, AZ, Casa Grande
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Buy once, cry ounce. If you like it, and can afford it. Go for it.
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Old Apr 10, 2013, 12:57 AM
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elfwreck's Avatar
United States, CA, Oakland
Joined Dec 2002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cessna20122013 View Post
Anything above the DX6I is a joke to me and a waste of money. Your flying a airplane. What more do you need than the DX6I. Not even a real plane has the options for anything above. You fly left,right,down,up,gear,flaps, and some adjustments with the DX6I. I will never upgrade and will be as happy as everybody else with there 1,000.00 Tx. How easy do you want flying to be? There has to be some challenge there.
Hey now,
sure it is. And any more car than a Yugo is an equal waste of money. Who needs more than four wheels a motor and a place to sit and carry groceries.
I fly three meter unlimited sailplanes. I need to be able to run "crow" settings as well as adjust camber and reflex in flight as well as having multiple flight mode settings for launch high speed and low lift conditions or I wont be competitive or even just enjoy a proper sport flight with my model.

Then there are several sport jets I fly where I enjoy having adjustable flaps, not just one or two preset positions as well as the choice to increase washout by raising the ailerons so there's less chance of tip stall on aproach.
Then there are my large scale models with multiple servos on the ailerons and elevator each with its own subtrim.
all of these and many more mixes are not cheats. they are not taking anything away from my enjoyment of flight nor are they making up for any suposed lack of skill on my part. They are there to make it posible to fly models you've never actually seen fly or thought about how they are set up and correctly operated.
Not only do I get many nifty mixes and the potential to come up with mixes and adjustments never before seen but I also get much nicer gimbals with metal parts and ball bearings so my inputs feel that much smoother.
If you really think higher end radios are a waste of money you are sadly mistaken and your arrogance in thinking us to be the fools leads one to think that you may not have the ability to understand why a more expensive radio may be better. So sad.

So you're prolly better off staying with your basic radio and simple four channel advanced trainer sport models. Go ahead and use Y connectors instead of seperate ailerons. You don't need individual subtrims or flaperons, contra flaps, or ailervators for that matter. Why even that DX6i may be a rip off radio for you. Go out and get your self a DX4 and keep it real cheap and simple. Let's face it, expo and rudedual rates are for sissies who cant properly handle a model and elevon mixing is a joke, just hold the radio at a fourty five degree angle. It works just as well.
Sheesh. I don't care what kind of radio anybody flies. I don't much care what kind of models folks fly either but elitist attitudes and stupid snobbery and antisnobbery have no place in modeling. It's just rude dude.
RobII
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