Q95 made by Awesome, another interesting "under-100-class" FPV racer? (review, wip) - RC Groups
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Jun 15, 2017, 01:36 PM
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Mini-Review

Q95 made by Awesome, another interesting "under-100-class" FPV racer? (review, wip)


It's almost raining new small FPV racers recently. 85, 90, 95 size, and other shapes and sizes. The 95 size class has recently shown some very succesful designs, like the Lizard 95 and ARFUN 95, for instance. Can this quad, made by the Awesome company, make an equally sound impression, or will it pale in comparison with other competitors?





Disclaimer: I don't get paid, or in any other way make money with reviews like these. Product specifications and quality may vary at the manufacturer's discretion, and are beyond my influence. I cannot guarantee you will get a product that performs exactly the same as seen and described in this review. There is always room for a general discussion on the reviewed item, feel free to comment, but if you are planning to add a long review, instead of some summarizing remarks, it would be appreciated to put these in a new review topic or on your RCG blog page. And please, no affiliate links!

Note: When clicking a link that is posted in this review, some text or numbers might be added to the link, making it appear to be an affiliate link. However, all links I post in the review are clean, and this addition is done automatically by your browser and forum software, so sadly beyond my influence. If you don’t want this to happen, copy the link, then paste in an address line of a fresh browser window/tab.



For easy navigation, here's a list of contents:

1: Specifications (posting #1)
2: Unboxing (posting #1)
3: Transmitter/Preparing for 1st Flight (posting #1)
4: Flying Performance (posting #1)
5: Preliminary Verdict (posting #1)
6: Suitable for a Beginner? (posting #1)
7: Camera & FPV Performance (posting #2)
8: Additional Tuning, Modifications & Other Info (posting #2)
9: Suggestions for Improvements (posting #2)




1 - Specifications:


First, let's start with a picture and a link:



https://www.banggood.com/Awesome-Q95...p-1151148.html

Price was around 106 euro at the time this review was created.



2 - Unboxing:

The Awesome Q95 comes in a compact, rather sturdy, box, and was still sealed when I received it:




Inside we find the quad, held in soft foam, and some other accessories:




Here are all the contents of the box. Spare props, extra landing feet with prop guards molded on, but no battery or receiver:




Compared to the product pictures, it seems black was later preferred as color for the landing feet. The motors are not 1104, but like the KingKong 90GT, 1103 type, rated at 7500kv. Frame is 2mm, top deck is 1mm Carbon Fiber.






There is easy access to the USB port, and at the rear we find a buzzer/leds unit.

Sadly though, the soldering quality is far from awesome:




Apart from the motor wires, you can also see a few strains of the red wire on the top board, touching another solder pad. Seems you can just not power up these quads without a check of the wiring and soldering, first.



3 – Transmitter/Preparing for 1st Flight:

Since this quad comes without receiver, or battery, some suitable components need to be sourced to get it flying. Luckily, almost the same time as the Q95 arrived, an order I made earlier, arrived as well. It contained a few FD800 receivers, which I had intended to replace the glitchy AC800 receivers, that are in my Tiny 6 and several other quads. While small, and offering RSSI, as well as the option to select between PPM and SBUS, the random glitches that can occur on any of the channels, at any moment, make these unreliable. The FD800 is similar size, and was reported to be better. So I decided to take one of these and install in the Q95.

Since there is no manual inside the box, apart from a small one for the FPV camera, I had to look elsewhere for where to solder the receiver wires. Luckily there is some info on the Banggood website for it:






After soldering the wires in place, and connecting these to the receiver, it was fixed on the top deck with some double face tape:




Some settings needed to be changed, to make the receiver "talk" to the flight controller. Screenshots of the settings I needed to change, are attached to the second message in this thread.


For the battery, I took the Furibee F90 2S 400mAh. The battery is held with strong rubber bands, but there is no anti-slip on the bottom of the frame. To avoid sliding of the battery, I use a few small patches of 3M anti slip pads. To avoid the battery wires getting caught in the props, a zip tie was used:






The stock props are Gemfan 2035, which are becoming very popular, as I understand. One drawback, which can also be seen on the product picture, is that these have a very tight fit on the motor axle, so pressing these on, might result in pressing the axle down as well. Maybe that is why Awesome has decided not to fit prop screws, expecting the props to just press-fit. Personally, I would prefer to have the props fit on the axles with ease, and screws to hold the props. So for the first flights, some 3-blade props, that I got from Gearbest to test, were fitted on the Q95.

With everything installed, charged up and ready to go, the quad looked like this:








4 - Flying Performance:


First outdoor test showed a nicely handling quad. Good power, speed and agility, just a little wobbling when descending through the propwash. As a picture can be worth more than a thousand words, here's a short video, showing it's performance:

Awesome Q95 - First LoS test flight (1 min 32 sec)





5 - Preliminary Verdict:


The Q95 is a nicely performing quadcopter. Featuring smooth running motors and a neatly designed frame. Soldering quality should be better, but doesn't seem to affect flight performance. Shame also that the OSD feature of the installed flight controller is not put to use.

Considering that you get no receiver and battery, it's no bargain, but the quality of the hardware seems better than average, which the camera giving a very naturally looking image, and good FPV range.




Pros:

- Smooth motors
- Almost no props in view
- Buzzer
- Programmable leds
- Good FPV range
- Natural colors on camera image



Cons:

- Some sloppy soldering
- No prop screws included
- No manual included explaining wiring on the FC
- Board has OSD feature, but not connected




6 - Suitable for a beginner?




(to be continued)
Last edited by SoloProFan; Jul 11, 2017 at 02:41 AM.
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Jun 15, 2017, 01:37 PM
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7 - Camera & FPV Performance:

Setting up the FPV camera is pretty common, if you have worked with these small AIO cameras before. Short button press to cycle channel numbers, long button press to cycle bands. The VTX uses a whip-style antenna, so it should be able to withstand some crashes.

Apparently the FC is capable of OSD, and it's also listed in the specs, but the camera isn't wired to use the OSD, as the only wires between FC and AIO camera are the power wires, no video out and video in. So in theory it has OSD, but you don't get to see it, unless you hack it in yourself...

Luckily the receiver I installed gives RSSI feedback to the Taranis, so it will call out if signal is getting low, and the quad has a buzzer, so a low battery can be detected as well.. Still, a bit of a missed opportunity here.

But OSD or not, it flies pretty well in FPV mode. The props are barely visible, so these don't really detract from the view. And the handling, speed and agility are rather well. This video gives an impression what you can expect:

Q95 by Awesome - First FPV Flight (2 min 18 sec)




8 Additional Tuning, Modifications & Other Info

So far I like this one a lot in stock form. Maybe a different camera that more easily allows to wire in the OSD, will be installed someday. Though the stock camera has nice image, so it's not that an upgrade is needed right away.



9 Suggestions for Improvements:


- Use the OSD feature of the FC
- Add screws for the props
- Manual or at least the basic info on how to connect a receiver
Last edited by SoloProFan; Sep 29, 2017 at 01:11 AM.
Jun 16, 2017, 05:06 AM
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Pictures added
Jun 16, 2017, 07:22 PM
Quad Erat Demonstrandum
scousethief's Avatar
Looks like flux maybe in short supply and maybe a hotter iron. Nice looking quad though the motor guards would have to go, do the props sit that high on the shafts ?
Jun 16, 2017, 09:05 PM
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Taiaumun's Avatar
Looking forward to your review on this one Solo
Jun 17, 2017, 01:43 AM
Registered User
the arms look a bit thin ? How think is the carbon fibre ?
Jun 17, 2017, 03:19 AM
Fan of just about anything RC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scousethief
Looks like flux maybe in short supply and maybe a hotter iron. Nice looking quad though the motor guards would have to go, do the props sit that high on the shafts ?
I think the motor guards might be useful, as these also make it not rest on the battery. The soldering looks awful on the motor wires, I wonder if I will try it like it is, or reflow first. During a short motor test, all motors ran very smoothly though, with minimal vibrations.

There are no screws for the props btw, so maybe they thought these Gemfan props are such a tight press-fit, screws were deemed unneccesary? Personally, I prefer props secured with screws, especially on 2S brushless stuff.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Taiaumun
Looking forward to your review on this one Solo
I have it almost prepped for a first flight, if the weather cooperates and there will come nothing else to "eat" my spare time today, I expect to be able to give an update soon.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sylvestor2002
the arms look a bit thin ? How think is the carbon fibre ?
I'll measure that asap, along with the quad's weight. I estimate it's 2mm, but I will verify this later on.
Jun 17, 2017, 06:41 AM
Quad Erat Demonstrandum
scousethief's Avatar
Its the height of the props in the first picture , any imbalance in those props would be magnified by the gap half of the reason the small props are screwed down is so that the imbalances in the props are negated by the motor bell, RE the soldering , personally i would reflow then theres less chance of a mishap in flight that wasnt caused by pilot error.

Nice quad though i hope its fast
Jun 17, 2017, 06:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scousethief
Its the height of the props in the first picture , any imbalance in those props would be magnified by the gap half of the reason the small props are screwed down is so that the imbalances in the props are negated by the motor bell,

The Gemfan 2035 props, that are bundled with this quad, have such a tight fit on the axle, that I think for the picture they didn't want to take the risk pressing these down fully. I've already read about people pushing the motor axle out of place, as the press fit of the axle on motor isn't up to the pressure needed to press the props in place.

I need to fit a secure way to slightly ream the holes in the Gemfan props, first attempt yielded a slightly out of line hole, when drilling by hand. So for the first tests, some Gearbest 3 blade props will be used, similar to KK1935-3 props. If these are not giving enough thrust, I can switch to Racerstar 4-blade, or 5-blade type.
Jun 17, 2017, 11:21 AM
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Added more content and first flight video.
Jun 17, 2017, 11:28 AM
Quad Erat Demonstrandum
scousethief's Avatar
Looks like it flies fine m8 , little motor jitter on descent but it could just be the mic emphasizing the sound.

Very nice
Jun 17, 2017, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scousethief
Looks like it flies fine m8 , little motor jitter on descent but it could just be the mic emphasizing the sound.

Very nice

Might be too high D-term, or some other PID setting being not 100% optimal. Afaik it uses BF defaults. But overall, I am happy with how it flies. Just did some FPV, video uploading now...
Jun 17, 2017, 01:13 PM
Quad Erat Demonstrandum
scousethief's Avatar
Just been out myself lol burnt to a crisp , it is absolutely scorching here today
Jun 17, 2017, 03:00 PM
Fan of just about anything RC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scousethief
Just been out myself lol burnt to a crisp , it is absolutely scorching here today

If you still have some energy left, I've added a video of the first FPV flight.
Jun 17, 2017, 03:58 PM
Quad Erat Demonstrandum
scousethief's Avatar
Very nice indeed m8 , your FPV flying is very smooth now love it.


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