iRangeX i8X - IR8M multi protocol transmitter - RC Groups
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Jan 25, 2018, 08:53 PM
Registered User
Mini-Review

iRangeX i8X - IR8M multi protocol transmitter




Provided by Banggood.com for review / Product page


IrangeX i8X IR8M multi protocol transmitter .

I have been a fan of the iRangeX multi protocol modules for a long time now and own a early IRX4 and a latter IRX4+ modules . The IRX4 is in my Turnigy 9XR pro and the IRX4+ is in my Turnigy Q x7 transmitter . So when I heard iRangeX was bringing out a multi protocol transmitter I really wanted one . I would like to thank Banggood for making the IR8M transmitter available to me for review .



Band: 2.4GHz
Channels: 8
Color: White, Black (optional)
Mode: Mode 2, Mode 1 (optional)
Computer Radio: Yes
Outpulse: 1000-2000ms
Model Memery: 30
Modulation: "4 IN 1" CYRF6936, CC2500, NRF2401, A7105
Range: Full
Telemetry: Yes
Transmitter (Tx) Battery Type: 2S Lithium lon Battery/ 4S "AA" 1.5V

Features:
* i8X-IR8M transmitter can act like a USB drive. Managing models, configuration, icons, and themes is as easy as copying a file.
* Supporting for up to 255 different models in transmitter memory.
* Fully configurable themes including bitmaps, fonts.
* Flexible transmitter configuration, remap any switches or buttons to any purples. Also Virtual Channels for additional
functionality.
* All text is localized, user-adjustable mode configurations (1, 2, 3 or 4)
* Smooth, quad-bearing gimbals, adjustable stick length and tension.
* Comfortable, no-slip tubber grips.
* Easy-to-read backlit screen.
*Support for multiple protocols without any modifications to the transmitter:


Cyprus: CYR6936: DSM/DSMX, JR Pro, Walkera DEVO
Texas Instruments: CC2500: Frsky, Futaba SFHSS
Amiccom: A7105: Flysky AFHDS2A, Hubsan
Nordic Semiconductor: NRF24L01: Hisky, Syma, Assan and most other Chinese models.

Package Included:
1X iRangeX iRX-IR8M 2.4G 8CH Multi-Protocol Transmitter With Receiver





Multi Protocol :
The IR8M is powered by Deviation firmware which should make updates relatively painless VIA USB connection to your PC . I would suggest visiting the Deviation forum for supported models and any firmware updates . Binding to supported models is very easy and to such I have made a video showing just how to do so . Remember to turn your model off after binding as well the transmitter and then turning them back on to use and verify the bind .


JJRC H36 Bind process for iRangeX i8X IR8M (5 min 18 sec)




Throttle Cut :
I was on Youtube looking for a tutorial on setting up throttle cut for Deviation and did not see anything worth while , so having to work it out for myself I share a simple process that works for me and is effective . ( Got to have throttle cut )


Deviation throttle cut ( iRangeX i8X IR8M transmitter ) (1 min 21 sec)




Deviation :
I have been schooled the last few days using this software in the IR8M transmitter and I have to say it really is different to what I am used to . But different is not bad , what we have is a very powerful firmware that once learned allows the user a lot of control over function . If you use a lot of different transmitters running various firmware , I must admit it can be a little tricky keeping track ( remembering ) the ways of doing things . I have been playing with OpenTx on one transmitter setting up my DLG and then testing and setting up the IR8M . And to be fair I did forget a few times how to do stuff with Deviation . Learning how to do things with two operating systems at the same time ? ( Perhaps a mistake on my part ) . My point being , if I can do it , you can do it .

IR8M Transmitter :
The transmitter whilst looking different and feeling different in the hand is not really that different from other transmitters . Each side of the transmitter has 2 x 2 position toggle switches as well one 3 position switch for a total of 6 switches . There are also two rotary pots that are linked to the 2 position switches on the shoulder of the transmitter . ( Switches being AUX4 and AUX5 )
My IR8M is mode 2 , so throttle and rudder are on the left stick and on the right stick I have elevator and aileron . On the left grip you have your buttons for navigating the menu , Up – down – left and right . Exit and enter are on the lower part of the front panel whilst the on / off switch is underneath the transmitter next to the USB port . Next to the USB port is a hole , and I can only surmise that the plan was to have a SD card port there .

In the back of the transmitter is where you put your batteries , the transmitter is supplied with a 4 x AA tray for such purpose . You could put in a battery of your own choosing as long as it is 2s ( 8.4v maximum ) .. Update ( Post 4 ) Plug used by iRangeX is not 2s Compatible .

Menu :
Navigating the Deviation firmware / software can be daunting at first . It is really different to other transmitter operating systems . What I found challenging was that things seem to be hidden in plain sight . Just remember if pressing enter does not work , try the left or right button as you may need to scroll to get what you want .

In the Menu :
One of the things I really found impressive was the Tx power settings . You can set the Tx to the power transmit level you think is appropriate , you don't need to run maximum power all the time . Myself I am running 30mW for my micro quads and I may be able to run even less since I don't fly these at any great range .

Power :
From a low off 100uW – 300uW – 1mW – 3mW – 10mW – 30mW – 100mW – 150mW
A few choices there , especially for indoor flying .

I simply don't have the time to describe everything in the menu , but suffice to say it has plenty of power to do the things you may want to . In the videos I have made I show how to bind as well as reverse a channel . As well throttle cut which I consider seriously important for electrics . Not on video I set up triple rates ( 3 position switch ) for my H8mini which when bound to the IR8M went bionic . So now I have 50% - 75% and 100% on a 3 position switch .

Models :
I have been binding models to my multi protocol modules for months now and what people will notice when binding to the IR8M is that the model will feel different . This is simply because you are using a different transmitter . I use a Turnigy 9XR pro as well a Taranis Q x7 with multi protocol modules and lets say my Eachine E010 bound to both feels different on each transmitter . When bound to the IR8M it feels different again , simply because each transmitter is different . This is why you probably want to play with rates until your model flies the way you want . You may even want to set up rates for indoor / outdoor flying .

The Good the Bad and the Ugly :

The good ….
This is a powerful multi protocol transmitter that I find easy to live with ( fly models ) and offers more functionality than I may ever need . To date the most trick thing I have done is set up triple rates . I really like the transmit power options . Once you learn how to navigate the menu setting up functions is not hard at all . As well the transmitter fits my hands well allowing easy access to the switches . I find the over all build quality to be in line with the selling price point . This does not mean how ever that there is not room for improvement .

The bad ….
I really don't like the position of the on / off switch . I just feel it is begging to be occidentally turned off . And speaking of turning the transmitter off , there is a 15 second delay ( there about s ) before you can turn the transmitter back on . This could potentially be problematic if you are flying and accidentally turn of the transmitter mid flight . Now the other thing is the lack of any instructions ( manual ) . There really should have been a manual , even if only a basic one to get people up and running .



The Ugly …
A lot of people , including myself are having a gimbals issue where by the gimbals don't return to zero ( centre ) . For me this is affecting my rudder or yaw . My quad keeps yawing gently left or right . I have been able to minimise this effect by giving my rudder some expo . About 5% seems to be best for me . So far I don't think anyone has actually pinned down the cause but a lot of good suggestions have been made for the possible fault . I have as yet not explored or looked for the cause as I wanted to do this review of the IR8M as delivered ( transmitter ) . I will keep playing with the IR8M as much as possible for about a week giving people time to ask questions ( if they chose so ) and after such time I will open up the IR8M and see about possibly fixing the gimbals issue ( if possible ) , or perhaps replacing them .

Conclusion : ( For now )
I have been very impressed by the iRangeX multi protocol modules that I have been using for several months now ( almost a year ) . And the IR8M does impress to the point where if there were no negatives I would be over the moon ( happy ) with it . The position of the on / off switch is almost like an after thought ( I can forgive that ) . The 15 ( about ) second delay restarting the transmitter is potentially problematic , but it's not a deal breaker and should ( amend to : hopefully ) be fixable with a firmware update . The gimbals though ! , honestly a few dollars more should perhaps have been invested here . The gimbals are the interface by which the device and user interact making for serious fun . If the gimbals are questionable then the entire experience is made questionable . So unfortunately this is a serious issue that requires remedy . There simply is no brushing it under the rug and moving on .

End Part A : ( We will come back and talk more about the IR8M - it is a very interesting transmitter )
Last edited by old4570; Jan 27, 2018 at 08:28 AM.
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Jan 26, 2018, 09:48 PM
Registered User

Battery


One of the first things I do after evaluating a new transmitter , is try and avoid using AA batteries .
Well not that I have anything against AA batteries , they are after all very useful . But I like having a dedicated higher voltage Lipo for the task .
Now with the IR8M , it takes 4 AA batteries , has anyone actually considered if there is a VIABLE replacement ?

Now that the initial review is out of the way , these are things I can ponder ...

The battery tray measures 61.6mm wide and some 57.7mm high .
The battery bay measures about 63.8mm wide and 58.6mm high with a depth of around 18.5mm .

Hmmmmm

Besides AA batteries :

You can buy relatively reliably AA now that can do 2400mAh ...

Just what Life/Lipo is going to fit that can compete with a better set of AA ?
Just for giggles I went and got two of my 2s batteries to see how close they would come to fitting the bay ..
One is reportedly 1200mAh and the other 1500mAh ( printed on the batteries ) and neither fits .

A quick look on feebay found nothing .. Most NIMH packs look to be made up of 5 batteries ..
And I dont think any come with a 2s balance plug .
Now I am sure if I started looking really hard I could find something that would fit , but could it compete with a 2400mAh AA NIMH ?
That 2s plug looks inviting , but I don't think there is anything out there worth replacing the AA tray .

See Post 4 , IrangeX plug is not 2s plug ( well not the usual one )
Last edited by old4570; Jan 27, 2018 at 08:30 AM.
Jan 27, 2018, 06:08 AM
Registered User
Flipping my JJRC H36 with the iRangeX IR8M transmitter (1 min 19 sec)


A quick guide to flipping .. ( In this case my JJRC H36 )
Jan 27, 2018, 08:26 AM
Registered User
Not 2s Compatible in anyway ...

SeByDocKy
Jan 30, 2018, 08:32 PM
Registered User

Ok


The suggestion has been made that the circuit on the IR8M , might be limited to the 6v region ...
So trying to run a lipo pack might be a no no ...
So fair crack of the cheese whip .. The IR8M might be best with AA batteries ..
Feb 21, 2018, 03:43 AM
Registered User
Hi, i have added a link that shows my other reply in rcgroups about adding an external antenna, and making the buttons quieter.
https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...-Review/page40
Feb 21, 2018, 04:47 AM
Registered User
I saw that ...

Several ways to go , just drill and feed the antenna wire outside ..
Find a donor antenna stub from another Tx
Or install an entire new antenna ..

I have ordered some parts and will play when they get here .
I would be very interested to see what feeding the antenna outside the case does (?)
If anything ?

Just waiting at the moment ( for parts )


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