Blade 200QX Quadcopter Review
Blade 200QX Quadcopter by Horizon Hobby – Review
In a RC World where quadcopters are becoming THE thing to pilot, Blade Helicopters took the popular 350QX platform and shrank it. Luckily, there was no movie starring Rick Moranis, but I did get the opportunity to give the 200QX Quadcopter a good test and you can see my thoughts on the aircraft after the jump…
Review By: Tomato Sauce
Pictures By: Tomato Sauce
RTF/BNF: BNF (Requires DSM Based 5+ Channel Controller)
Electric or Gas: Electric
Gyroscopic System: SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope)
Flight Modes: 3 (Stable, Aggressive Stable, Agility Mode (No auto stabilization)
Size: 200 Class (200mm from end of blade to opposite end of blade diagonally)
Rotor Size: 113mm
Battery: Comes with 2S 800mAh LiPo Battery with JST Plug
Flight Time: 8min hovering, 5min for standard/more aggressive flight
Part Number: BLH7780
Top Speed: Not recorded
Warranty: “free from defects… at date of purchase”
Street Price: $229
Primary Competition: Anything brushed of same size class (Blade 180QX, LaTrax Alias, Heli-Max 230Si, Ares Ethos QX130)
What’s Needed To Complete: DSM type air radio transmitter. I used a DX9 (V1.06 Firmware) for the review
Build Quality: Everything seemed tight and well put together, no major issues visually.
Test Pilots: Tomato Sauce, HobbyTown Steve, HobbyTown Sam
Test Venues: HobbyTown Orland, My Front Yard, Back lot of a Mercedes Dealer
Set-up Notes: Ran it stock, but supplemented the stock charger for a Venom Pro Charger. Also needed to install landing skids prior to flight (2 screws, so no big deal). For pizzazz, I slapped on the Red DNA UpgradeRC skin (Horizon Hobby/LHS, $9). I also grabbed a Lectron 850mah 2S LiPo to assist in the review as well.
Flying: Don’t let this tiny quadcopter fool you: this think is powerful! Thanks to the SAFE system, even in the most stable of modes, this guy packs solid speed and great maneuverability. The most stable mode limits aggression so at full power the quad moves at manageable speeds and fights the wind well. The aggressive stability mode provides extreme maneuverability while still being able to get back in a hover once you let go of the right stick. Now the Agility Mode (aka Red Light of Doom) is for expert pilots only; it does not stabilize when you let go of the sticks. I did a limited amount of flying on it, but that mode is great to learn manual tricks for your quad.
Bumps/Whoops: For a small quadcopter, it sure is durable! HobbyTown Sam ground down a propeller on a bad landing, and there’s a whole new set in the box, besides most local shops carrying basic parts. During a standard flight, a blade sheared off and the quad fell about 10 feet! After a bounce, it survived with only the missing propeller! The video is below as proof.
This quad was a pure joy to pilot. It was a powerful setup yet still had gentle modes so any pilot could use it. The only issue I had was in the battery. Most of the E-Flite batteries you find in helicopter have the ability to charge using a higher than normal rate to cut down on recharge time. The 800mah battery included only has a 1C charge rate, which means after a full 5 minute flight I have an hour to wait. The Lectron battery I also used had a 2C charge rate, cutting my charging time to around 30 minutes. Maybe the 3C batteries of the 350QX spoiled me, but I feel that for a quad that has semi-short flight times, a high charge rate shouldn’t be hard to put in the battery.
During the testing, we did have to replace some propellers. Blade did include a wrench for the motor and propeller nuts, but after 3 nuts my prop wrench is TOAST. Granted it was plastic, but it didn’t last through one whole propeller replacement. Grab a nut driver set from your LHS and you’ll be right as rain.
The last point we’d like to share about this quad is night flight. This quadcopter’s lights in tandem with the opaque body make it a glowing star in the twilight/night sky. Orientation problems don’t exist at night, as the green and red lights are clearly seen from any angle. If you are unsure about this quad, just get it for the fact that it is a fun way to fly at night and give a show for the neighbors!
Best Mod: Grab a UpgradeRC Skin from Horizon or order from your LHS. They add a nice flair to the bland white body, and doesn’t keep your lights from shining! For the aerial photographer, there is a camera that mounts directly to the 200QX found Right Here
A = Outstanding/Best in Class, B = Above Average, C = Average, D = Below Average, F = Horrific
Time To Bash: B Install the two screws for the landing gears, charge the battery, bind and fly!
Workability: B+ Minus the plastic wrench, the 200QX is really easy to work on.
Air Show Rating: B Simple design but filled with beauty, especially the LED lighting design with the opaque body.
Bash-A-Bility: B The 200QX took a beating and a fall or two with only broken propellers.
Fun Factor: A Great to fly, especially at night!
Handling: B Like any quadcopter, it takes getting used to, but thank the SAFE system for making it easy to do!
Value: C The street price is a little high, and only comes in a BNF package which requires you to already own a good air transmitter.
Parts Availability: B Not all hobby shops carry Blade, but my LHS had blades and landing skids already on the shelf 2 days after release!
BigSquid Rating: B The 200QX is a solid platform that provides the power of larger scale quadcopters in a small package. Granted, it is on the higher end of the pricing scale, but I can assure you this quadcopter is worth every penny, unless you don’t already have a transmitter. Then I’d suggest something RTF.