Horizon Hobby - Spektrum iX12 12-Channel DSMX Transmitter Review - RC Groups

Horizon Hobby - Spektrum iX12 12-Channel DSMX Transmitter Review

The ix12 is the next evolution in Spektrum transmitters. This TX features wifi, Bluetooth, a touch screen and much more! In this review, I show you all the features, include how-to videos and more!

Splash

The Intelligent Spektrum iX12 radio12-channel Transmitter

This is one of those things that get you excited about the hobby. I have been a Spektrum user for many years but when I saw the release notes on the ix12 I knew things had just changed in a big way. The combination of an Android based touched screen system coupled with Spektrum technology was something I had to have. In this review I plan to touch on questions you might have, how things work and provide all the info I can answer all you ix12 questions and get you going as a new ix12 user.

Spektrum iX12 12-Channel DSMX Transmitter Review = RCGroups (55 min 26 sec)

Spektrum Brand Manager Interview on the ix12

RCGroups Hangout - Check Out the iX12 Spektrum TX!! (43 min 25 sec)

Features

ERGONOMICS

The very first thing I noticed when I held the ix12 was how good it felt. The weight is right (slightly heavier than the DX9), the grippy surface feels great, the width is just right and the sticks feel very "quality" to me. Another thing I'm picky about are how smooth the sliders are. I'm happy to report they are great on the ix12. So right out of the box, the feel was a winner for me.

After I had been bragging on how good this radio felt I then read that there was a reason. The design was based on team-pilot recommendations and customer feedback, the iX12 had been persistently engineered to have the most optimized feel possible. The weight distribution and ergonomics of the iX12 have been optimized to fit a wide range of pilot needs.

TOUCHSCREEN WITH Android-powered INTERFACE

The ix12 has a touch screen that is a nice size and looks great. Some clicks need to be "long" clicks, so be aware of that. If you have big fingers a stylus may also be a good idea. You basically have an Android-based smart device built into the TX so that means you can run anything off the Google Play store.

WIRELESS TRAINER LINK

Now iX12 users can wirelessly link up with other Spektrum transmitters and specially-equipped Spektrum FPV headsets. It’s hassle-free. Once bound to another transmitter or component, ModelMatch technology will allow the iX12 to re-link without having to go through the bind process again. That is pretty awesome and why my DX9 is in the same case as the ix12.

WITH WIRELESS TRAINER LINK, YOU CAN:

  • Wirelessly 'buddy box' with another DSMX/DSM2 transmitter when teaching someone to fly
  • Assign gimbal functions to a second 'camera' transmitter when flying a camera drone so you can focus on avoiding obstacles and maintaining visual contact while someone else lines up the shot
  • Link with specially-equipped Spektrum FPV headsets to wirelessly control head tracking and remotely change camera video frequencies

WI-FI CONNECTIVITY

One of the first questions I asked was about wifi and I'm happy to report that the ix12 does have it. That means with the Spektrum AirWare Touch app update-alerts are automatic, plus you can download model setups and add third-party apps. Listen to music on Spotify or Pandora directly from your radio or even update your Facebook status just before you fly. You may not need all that but it's pretty cool that it's there.

BLUETOOTH CONNECTIVITY

The iX12 also has Bluetooth. That means you can use wireless earbuds to hear voice alerts privately, or pair a set of speakers and listen to music. Now your TX can do file sharing, photo sharing and more.

MICRO USB CONNECTIVITY

I am always looking for the right charger for my TX. I was pretty stoked to see that the ix12 can be charged with any micro USB cable - awesome! The micro USB also allows you to hook up to your flight-control board and use their apps to adjust settings directly from the iX12 with no laptop required. The integrated micro USB port conveniently allows you to charge its internal Li-Ion battery with a common Micro USB cable and power source. Other accessory devices can be recognized too, including your PC or laptop

INTUITIVE PROGRAMMING

I'm all about things being intuitive. While there is a learning curve with this TX the Spektrum AirWare Touch app is derived from the familiar Spektrum AirWare firmware used today. You should be able to get around from past Spektrum use and hopefully this review will have the answers you need to answer any questions.

LONG RANGE RF MODULE SUPPORT

I don't fly long-range BUT if you do the iX12 transmitter allows you to use a long-range RF system (adapter, SPMA3090 required) such as Team Black Sheep Crossfire protocol technology (sold separately) that gives you low latency performance and secondary frequency convenience.

PROGRAMMABLE VOICE AND AUDIO ALERTS

Voice alerts are a great way to know what's going on without looking at your TX and allows you to keep your eyes on the sky. The iX12 programmable voice alert system can call out what flight mode you have chosen or report telemetry info on demand.

Text-to-speech means that you can create any voice alert by just typing in the words, it can even take *.WAV files so you can have virtually any sound imaginable. In addition to a built-in speaker, the iX12 has a headphone jack that allows you to monitor voice alerts, and/or listen to your favorite song during flight, using earbuds so you don't bother other pilots. You can also use its Bluetooth support to connect with wireless earbuds or your phone.

ADJUSTABLE GIMBALS

It's features like this that show you how much time the dev team spent on making this TX awesome. The days of having to open up your TX for adjustments is over. With the ix12 you have access to tension, ratchet and travel adjustments for each gimbal is conveniently through the front - no disassembly required. There’s nothing to it. Even mode conversion adjustments are accessible. To create the perfect feel, just lift off the rubber access cover and make a simple adjustment.

Gimbal Access Points:

  • Up/Down Travel Limiter
  • Left/Right Gimbal Stick Tension
  • Up/Down Resistance
  • Up/Down Ratchet
  • Up/Down Gimbal Stick Tension
  • Gimbal Centering Screw

250-Model Memory

Do you have 250 planes?!! If you do you can store 250 models straight to the radio, and even more on to an SD card.

Backwards Compatible

You are probably moving from another Spektrum radio to the ix12. The iX12 can share model setups with any Spektrum G2 transmitter with Spektrum AirWare firmware. Transfer model setup data from an ‘old’ transmitter to your new iX12 or share models with almost any other Spektrum G2 user.

The iX12 can share model setups with any of these Spektrum transmitters:

  • DX6e
  • DX6 G2
  • DX6 G3
  • DX7 G2
  • DX8 G2
  • DX8e
  • DX9 (All)
  • DX18
  • DX18QQ
  • DX18 G2
  • DX18 Stealth Edition
  • DX20

Built-In Telemetry

Built-in telemetry can give you real-time data on critical information like your model's battery voltage, signal quality, motor temperature and more.* Using the voice alert system, you can program the iX12 to tell you when specific telemetry values reach or exceed limits you define. You can also have it call out a sequence of telemetry values on demand with the flip of a switch.

Questions You Might Have

  • Is the transmitter separate from the OS - Yes, the Android system is not connected to your RF siganl while flying.
  • What battery does it use - 3.7V 1S 6000 mAh Lithium Ion Battery
  • Can my existing Model parameters from my DX9 SD card be uploaded to the iX12? - Yes
  • Is the iX12 backward compatible to DSM and DSM2 receivers - The iX12 is backward compatible with DSM2, but not DSM
  • Is the screen glass - No, it is plastic
  • How often do I need to charge the ix12 - You should charge nightly if you are using it on a daily basis, like an OS device

Photos

How-to Videos

The Spektrum team has created a great series of videos that go over the functions of the ix12. They are so informative I felt compelled to included them in this review for new ix12 owners and those that have questions.

Powering on the Spektrum iX12

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Powering on the Spektrum iX12 (4 min 37 sec)

Registration

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Registration (1 min 58 sec)

Updating Software

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Updating Software (3 min 27 sec)

Navigating the On-Board Manual

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Navigating the On-Board Manual (2 min 59 sec)

Sleep Mode Explained

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Sleep Mode Explained (3 min 16 sec)

Model Setup

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Model Setup (7 min 16 sec)

Export Model Files to an SD Card

How to Export Model Files to an SD Card on the Spektrum iX12 (1 min 9 sec)

iX12 Back Button Shortcut

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - iX12 Back Button Shortcut (1 min 57 sec)

Wing Types Explained

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Wing Types Explained (3 min 15 sec)

Battery Percentage Explained

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Battery Percentage Explained (3 min 41 sec)

Servo Setup

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Servo Setup (8 min 20 sec)

Telemetry Overview

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Telemetry Overview (4 min 17 sec)

Audio Setup

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Audio Setup (8 min 12 sec)

Gimbal Adjustments

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Gimbal Adjustments (4 min 1 sec)

Text to Speech Voice Change

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Text to Speech Voice Change (4 min 30 sec)

Google Play

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Google Play (3 min 32 sec)

Adding your own pictures from an Android device

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Adding your own pictures from an Android device (3 min 31 sec)

Adding your own pictures from an OS device

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series - Adding your own pictures from an IOS device (2 min 19 sec)

Team Black Sheep Crossfire Setup

Spektrum iX12 Instructional Series – Team Black Sheep Crossfire Setup (2 min 10 sec)

Learn More

Head over the Horizon/Spektrum site for even more information on the ix12.

Thread Tools
Jun 15, 2018, 02:28 PM
USA: LakeGeorge, New York
...did you say,
"charge daily every night like
a cell phone".....???? Every night??

Is that a typo?

3.7volts?
Is that enough to power UHF transmitter connected?
(ie....TBS X-fire, DragonLink,MFD Link, etc.....)
Jun 15, 2018, 02:34 PM
AndyKunz's Avatar
The iX12 includes boost circuitry to bring the 1S battery up to the level needed by the external modules.

3.7V is a reference to the nominal output of the 1S battery. It charges up to 4.2V.

Andy
Jun 15, 2018, 02:42 PM
USA: LakeGeorge, New York
Is there a upgraded battery pack with more
capacity?...

I just saw in YT there was an update fw.
It cuts the boot time from 2:30 to 1 minute.
Who in their right mind let that pass?

I can't believe you have to wait that long still.
It's a great radio with cool features, but it takes 1 minute
to power up unless sleep mode?
This is a RC Tx, not a cell phone/2005 computer.

The only reason this took my interest is bc of the Opterra 1.2m
and Aaron (RedBaron). I've followed him since the very beginning of
FPV...he is an asset to your company!!!!
Last edited by rclab1; Jun 15, 2018 at 02:48 PM.
Jun 15, 2018, 02:45 PM
AndyKunz's Avatar
6000 mAh isn't enough?

Andy
Jun 15, 2018, 02:50 PM
USA: LakeGeorge, New York
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyKunz
6000 mAh isn't enough?

Andy

You serious bruh?

6000mah ain't enough if you have to charge it EVERYDAY......duh!

I charge my current RC Tx every 2-3 weeks and it has high powered
DragonLink UHF attached to it...it sips power..lol
Jun 15, 2018, 03:09 PM
AndyKunz's Avatar
You have to charge it according to your usage, just like any other electronic product.

My phone can go 3 days between charges, but my daughter needs to charge hers daily, sometimes in the middle of a day too.

The iX12 sitting on my shelf hasn't been charged in two weeks, but my work DX9 gets charged every few days.

Andy
Jun 15, 2018, 04:02 PM
Doberman fan
apriliamille's Avatar
Thanks for a nice radio
Jun 15, 2018, 04:03 PM
USA: LakeGeorge, New York
Ok
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyKunz
You have to charge it according to your usage, just like any other electronic product.

My phone can go 3 days between charges, but my daughter needs to charge hers daily, sometimes in the middle of a day too.

The iX12 sitting on my shelf hasn't been charged in two weeks, but my work DX9 gets charged every few days.

Andy

My usage,
what if I'm gonna use it on a 37 Mile mission (one way)....is it
possible to externally attach higher mAh capacity power source?

That's a pain in the arse if I have to charge it literally EVERYDAY!?!?
I've never seen that done before on a RC Tx.
Last edited by rclab1; Jun 15, 2018 at 04:38 PM.
Jun 15, 2018, 04:06 PM
Registered User
My dx8 1st generation gets charged twice a year with a 4000 mah battery. It gets little use but still.
Jun 15, 2018, 04:26 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by rclab1
Ok


My usage,
what if I'm gonna use it on a 37 Mile mission (one way)....is it
possible to externally attach higher mAh capacity power source?

That's a pain in the arse if I have to charge it daily.
You can connect an external backup battery to the usb port just like with any smartphone.
Battery life varies as Andy said, especially if you're using an external UHF module with different output power levels.

Booting the radio is not really a factor anymore with the new sleep mode. It draws virtually 0 mA when in sleep mode. I pretty much never shut the radio down anymore. Sometimes I go a whole week without charging depending on usage. I still leave it plugged into the charger before going out for a flight anyway while I'm charging my plane lipos.
Jun 15, 2018, 04:41 PM
USA: LakeGeorge, New York
Miguel
Did you guys receive DragonLink UHF request
for connections? Dennis (software guy for DL)
said he inquired(messaged) about DL UHF to xi12 connection.

P.S.
Good thing sleep mode exists....
I would slice my wrist (lol) if I had to
charge my RC TX literally EVERYDAY!
Out of the possible great functions, charging
EVERYDAY got passed QC...hahahaha LOL
Jun 15, 2018, 04:47 PM
Registered User
No one ever seems to complain having to charge their flight packs before a session. My 4s 1300 packs only last around 3-4 mins per pack, per flight.

Just sayin’
Jun 15, 2018, 04:50 PM
Registered User
I wouldn’t buy a IX12 then if it’s a risk to your health.

Actually your comment isn’t a very funny thing to laugh or joke about.
Jun 15, 2018, 04:51 PM
USA: LakeGeorge, New York
Quote:
Originally Posted by i_am_mark_evans
No one ever seems to complain having to charge their flight packs before a session. My 4s 1300 packs only last around 3-4 mins per pack, per flight.

Just sayin’
I complain when I have to change my 6s Li-Ion
out of my XUAV clouds FPVplane....it flies for 4hrs+.
I'm lazy as hell...Soo I will NEVER charge a RCTx EVERYDAY....


Quick Reply
Message:

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
FAQ New! Spektrum iX12 PropsnWings Radios 7334 Today 01:21 PM
Yippee! Spektrum iX12 for DLG ThomasLee Hand Launch 25 Apr 08, 2018 04:38 AM
Article NEW - iX12 12-Channel DSMX Transmitter and RCG Video Product Interview Jim T. Graham Electric Plane Talk 61 Jan 04, 2018 09:47 PM
Discussion Futaba 16sza 16-channel vs Spektrum ix12 radios fltekdiver Radios 8 Dec 18, 2017 06:14 AM
Discussion Horizon Hobby NEW Ix12 android based air radio giveaway!! jmscard Vendor Talk 0 Dec 07, 2017 02:01 PM