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Feb 17, 2010, 10:44 AM
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Discussion

Which TX to use with the Dragon Link UHF system?


Hi everyone,

At the moment I have a Spektrum DX6i, I suppose I can't use the Dragon Link system with this?

If not, which TX/RX would you suggest? I don't need a fancy TX, 6 channels would be more then enough, even 4 would do.

I would like to use the Dragon Link system, but don't want to spend $1000+ for a TX with fancy things I'll never use. A reasonable budget TX which works good with the Dragon Link will do me.

Is it difficult to get the Dragon Link working? I'm not a electronics engineer, but I can solder two wires together.

Thanks!
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Feb 17, 2010, 11:07 AM
Registered User
the dx6i ouputs ppm with inverted shift signal and it works afaik. (best is to ask jettpilot or jmstech)

personally i would look at the 9x turnigy tx. its cheap 9 channels, supports modules and stuff.
most other people seems to have a futaba 9CAP (its not $1000 but its still kinda expensive)
Feb 17, 2010, 11:17 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
I've never used that radio but I suspect my DX7 is very similar. On the DX7 you set the trainer port to normal and the port is automatically opened when the trainer plug is installed. In that mode the DX7 radio is turned off which is what you want. That leaves two other issues to deal with.

1) You need a power source for the DL. I installed a power plug that connects to the DX7 battery and a side switch that totally disconnects the battery from the radio. The slide switch allows you to turn off the DL without pulling the plugs out every time. To charge the battery however you do have to pull the DL plugs and turn the switch on.

2) The DX7 range adjustments can be made with the DL connected but they will only be temporary and erased when the power is cycled. You therefore still need to turn the DX7 on with the main switch to make permanent range changes. If you want to remove the DX7 antenna to get it out of the way you still want it connected since the Tx should not be turned on without an antenna. I just removed part of the antenna mount and left it inside the case.
Feb 17, 2010, 12:12 PM
JettPilot's Avatar
Steven,

I would expect that what Gary posted would work great, that is a very nice installation he did. I am glad to see people like Gary are helping out here since I dont have a model of every radio to test with the Dragon Link

Your other option is to buy a nice transmitter from Ebay or RC Universe marketplace, since everyone is converting to Spektrum, they are practically giving away very nice modern 72 MHZ transmitters Forget cheap off brand transmitters, you can get a really nice high end late model computerized JR or Futaba transmitter for a couple hundred bucks now.

Mike
Feb 17, 2010, 12:59 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbob00
the dx6i ouputs ppm with inverted shift signal and it works afaik. (best is to ask jettpilot or jmstech)

personally i would look at the 9x turnigy tx. its cheap 9 channels, supports modules and stuff.
most other people seems to have a futaba 9CAP (its not $1000 but its still kinda expensive)
i made an error, the 9x is 8 channels ppm (the 9th is pcm)

dx6i etc ........ $0 since you own it, but prolly going to mod it for the battery
9x ................$69
9cap etc.........$200 via ebay etc (approx)
DL.................$350

imo this makes the 9x a lot more attractive than the "old 72mhz". I would be happy to hear anything wrong about it tho
Feb 17, 2010, 01:24 PM
JettPilot's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbob00
i made an error, the 9x is 8 channels ppm (the 9th is pcm)

dx6i etc ........ $0 since you own it, but prolly going to mod it for the battery
9x ................$69
9cap etc.........$200 via ebay etc (approx)
DL.................$350

imo this makes the 9x a lot more attractive than the "old 72mhz". I would be happy to hear anything wrong about it tho
I dont like cheap chinese made stuff I have never bought something cheap and then thought " I am glad I am using this cheap thing instead of a well made brand name peice of equipment... " Thats just me, but the 9X will work great if that is what you want to use. Be aware of one thing, the shipping from hobby king will cost you about 40 dollars if you want it fast, and the radio does not come with a battery, chrager, rf module, or receiver, so realistically, you are going to spend

9x ...... 150.00 Dollars Just to hook it up to the Dragon Link , even more if
you want to fly some of your 72 MHZ planes with it

For a little more I can get a really nice JR 9303 72 MHZ transmitter from RCu or ebay for 200.00 only 50 dollars more, the JR transmitter you see below recently sold for 200 dollars with battery, module, and a very nice 72 MHZ receiver !!! For that small difference in price, the JR radio is much better than any off brand chinese radio will ever be, there is no comparison on the quality of the radio you will get. These are the kind of choices that will determine how nice of a FPV system you will have.

Mike
Last edited by JettPilot; Feb 17, 2010 at 01:59 PM.
Feb 17, 2010, 02:24 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
I guys, thanks for the replies, really appreciate it!

When I'm looking for a transmitter does it have to be 72Mhz?

Can de Dragon Link work on any transmitter?

And how difficult is it to connect the Dragon Link to the transmitter?

Do I need to be a seperate receiver, or does the Dragon Link package contain a receiver?

$200 dollars is within my budget, a JR9303 is that about $200 for a new one or used?

Ideally I would like a transmitter $200+/- and that I can ask advice on on how to connect the DL.

I've been down to my local RC club but there wasn't anyone that could give me advice, so hoping I can get all the knowledge from this forum. So excuse me if I'm asking kind of 'dumb' questions.

Thanks again!
Feb 17, 2010, 03:39 PM
Questionable judgement
bracky72's Avatar
You can also get a used Futaba 9C for $200. They are also nice.
Feb 17, 2010, 04:53 PM
Registered User
since you're talking used radios for $200..
i could get a used turnigy 9x for $30 over here, with shipping, a week ago

otherwise i'd like to hear whats wrong with it on the technical side only

few things:

- DragonLink is chinese, too
- the 9x used to cost $150, the price has been halved for the same tx by turnigy to $70.. it's not a very cheap tx. just cheap compared to futaba/jr/spektrum
- the 9x does not need any module, since you put the DragonLink onto it, and can be powered by the 9x too, and uses the DragonLink receiver. the guy uses a dx6 for regular flying and he's right to do so.
- the battery is a non-issue, because like everyone, you're going to plug a lipo into it, and the futaba/jr's do not support charging lipos directly EITHER, so you just charge using your regular lipo charger...

so.. no additional cost..

now.. what about the real technical down sides please? seriously, i'm interested, because i'd get a 9x myself.
they quite praise it as a "cheap" (as in price) radio in the radio forum


(ps: hobbyking "express" shipping to usa for the radio is $21, just checked - not UPS etc but hey. )
Last edited by jimbob00; Feb 17, 2010 at 04:59 PM.
Feb 17, 2010, 05:10 PM
Just clumsy. Oh, forgetful too
MikeTheCrash's Avatar
I have DX6i and DX7 too, I didn't want to hack them up just yet so I made the following connections to the DL lead.

I used an old stereo mini jack cable from a headphone extension lead so I didn't have to solder a plug. Note that the "ring" of the plug (green cable in my diagram) is not connected to anything inside the heatshrink and is just cut back to the insulation.

The battery +ve connects to the DL positive, -Ve battery to -ve DL and jack sleeve.

the PPM connection is connected to the jack tip - FOr convenience and neatness, this connection is done, and separately insulated, inside the deans plug's heat shrink
Last edited by MikeTheCrash; Feb 17, 2010 at 05:23 PM. Reason: improved graphic
Feb 17, 2010, 11:58 PM
Suspended Account
the dx6i uses a mono jack

and should be no problem at all with the DL

hot glue the connector so there is no wiggle or play with that connector

with Thomas' system I used both the dx6i and the 9303 2.4 tx's and both work purfectly as they will with the DL


but that "jack" is a weak link

becarefull with futaba, there have been reported problems without certain modifications


i upgraded to the evo 12 after I needed more control for certain planes
and the connector is far better
Last edited by David22; Feb 18, 2010 at 12:04 AM.
Feb 18, 2010, 02:14 PM
Registered User
Thread OP
So if would get the turnigy 9x transmitter how would I connect the Dragon Link to it?

Is this difficult? Do I need to do a lot of soldering?

Thanks!
Feb 18, 2010, 03:38 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevenf
So if would get the turnigy 9x transmitter how would I connect the Dragon Link to it?

Is this difficult? Do I need to do a lot of soldering?

Thanks!
Quote:
Originally Posted by braky72
have taken some pictures of my installation into the turnigy 9x. Sorry they aren't better but I completed the install before I decided to take some pictures. You should get the idea.

By coincidence the unit fits perfectly behind the radio with nothing more than friction securing it. I don't plan on using any other modules with this radio so I shall use Goop to secure it as well as put a panel over the module slot to pretty things up.
i think that's exactly what i would want to do, use this kind of radio for DL only.

https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...&postcount=854
https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...&postcount=857
https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...&postcount=883
Feb 18, 2010, 03:42 PM
JettPilot's Avatar
Jimboo,

30 Dollars is hard to beat for an RC transmitter, if one is on a tight budget, the 30 dollar transmitter would work OK. If I was going to spend 150 dollars, I would get a used JR before I would get a turnigy. But for those asking, any of the radios mentioned will work with the Dragon Link, JR , Futaba, Turnigy, and others, it does not have to be 72 MHZ and it does not matter what frequency the radio was origionally on. For me, the JR is easiest to hook up, just because that is what I have a lot of experience using.

For more information on hookups, and requirements, see the following webpage.

http://www.dragonlinklabs.com

The Dragon Link is not Chineese, it is made from parts from all over the world. And when I am buying parts for the Dragon Link, I buy the best, most expensive high quality parts I can find I do not buy cheap parts that risk failure or poor performance...

Mike
Last edited by JettPilot; Feb 18, 2010 at 03:47 PM.
Feb 18, 2010, 04:02 PM
Registered User
Jettpilot, i think 99% of the electronics components are chinese or related (from any electronic device not just DL :P)... they're actually often good quality. and the guy who made it as well (sure, there is also bad quality stuff; there is also "us" chips etc, i get your point too, but its not like all chinese stuff was bad, far from it)

Anyway, there's no technical argument against the 9x so far. All other radios are nice too, but the 9x brings a lot of bang for the buck (its not a turnigy design, they just put their stamp on it).

I know I wouldn't want to make holes in my DX7 for example (and its cheaper than a JR) to put a DL, but I'd do that in a 9x.. if I mess up its no big deal. As long as it has all the programming features, and the sticks feel good/responsive (and the thing doesn't break down ofc.. but many have the 9x) its quite fine in my eyes.

ps: if had an FPV van i guess i'd also take a big JR radio anyway, lol.
Last edited by jimbob00; Feb 18, 2010 at 04:08 PM.


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