Overall rating: 8/10
Value for money: 10/10
Pros: Fun, small, excellent flipping ability, 3 “rates”, stable and durable
Cons: Short battery life, brittle props and binding to the remote can be fiddly
This can be found cheaper on banggood.com through the UK warehouse: click here.
My first post! I’ll keep it short and sweet, just like the mini quadcopter I’m here to review:
The Cheerson CX-10 is a 4-channel nano quadcopter with a 6-axis gyro and is currently the smallest in the world.
What’s that mean?
- It has 4 motors and propellers (“quad”-copter)
- 2 sticks for control, both move in 2 axis: up/down and left/right (“4 channel”)
- In built stabilisation (6 axis gyro – this means it self levels after a controller input)
- It’s small, like really small!
Honestly I couldn’t believe how small this was when it arrived! I’d seen pictures of it and read reviews but neither prepared me for holding the quad in my hands for the first time. For a moment I thought I had been ripped off by an unscrupulous Ebay seller. Anyhow, I carefully took everything out of the box and began to read the instructions. Was I having a stroke or was I suffering from late onset dyslexia? No, just the worst case of “Chinglish” I had ever seen:
The manual ranges from downright confusing to fairly amusing however at no point does it contain anything useful, so throw it away and see my proper instructions at the end of the review. I normally wouldn’t recommend this as you’ll miss out on safety information but it is so poorly written an exception can be made. In the otherwise well presented package you’ll find the controller, charging lead and some spare props. You’ll need to buy, or raid the TV remote, for two AAA batteries before flying though as the controller needs these. It’s a bit of a shame really as surely they could have used another rechargeable 3.7V Lipo to power this and made the whole thing self contained. Oh and saved me the trip to Tesco’s when I realised all the TV remotes in the house take AA…
I decided to buy the Cheerson CX-10 quadcopter to learn on while I waited for a larger more expensive one to arrive from China (I’ll review that too when it arrives). I’ve only had it a short time, and it’s my first quad, but I have been so impressed with the stability of it and it really is a joy to fly. I went through an RC stage 5-10 years ago when those mini foam helicopters first came out and everyone got one in their stocking. I think they were around £30 or so and could only go up and down and rotate left and right. Skip forward to the present day and we have the Cheerson CX-10 that I bought for approximately £15 delivered. Okay so the manuals still haven’t improved but my goodness you get so much more for your money! It feels durable (although the props are small and fragile) and I think this is due to the full plastic case. The full casing also means it looks more like a finished product than other nano quads on the market and spare props are cheap and widely available online. You can replace the battery and motors but you’ll need soldering skills. Even though I’m a mechanical engineer and have a fair amount of experience around delicate electronics, I’d probably just buy a new one as it isn’t worth the hassle. If you’re worried about damaging the props there is a protective guard available but you can buy several replacement props for the cost of the guard and it would add weight.
I promised a short review so I think I’ll leave it there but feel free to ask questions below.
Clear English Instructions for the Cheerson CX-10 and How to Fly a Quadcopter (Courtesy of Incompletegeek)
These instructions assume you ordered the “Mode 2” version if not replace left with right and vice versa when following these instructions. You can tell which you have as the left stick is not sprung up/down if it is Mode 2 and the right stick is not sprung with Mode 1.
- Start by charging the quad by inserting the USB connector into a slot on your computer, or a wall adapter if you have one for your phone or tablet, and the other end in to the connector at the rear of the toy. A red light will come on in the plug at the computer end and go off when charging is complete. Don’t leave it plugged in longer than necessary as you can’t always trust cheap chargers not to overcharge batteries and this can be pretty dangerous when it happens to a Lipo battery = flames, toxic smoke, explosion – not what you want to happen with your new toy!
- Put two AAA batteries in the rear of the controller and replace the door.
- First turn on the controller using the sliding switch then turn on the quad using the switch under the charging port. The charger will beep twice to begin the “binding” process.
- Next push the left hand stick all the way to the top and back to the bottom. The charge will beep a once at the top and again at the bottom. You’ll also see the LED lights on each motor stop flashing.
- You are now ready to fly. Gently increase the throttle by pushing the left stick up and try to keep the quad hovering at a constant height. Notice that the rear lights are red and the front two are blue, this will help you considerably when you begin flying and flipping. “Flipping???” Yep, you can do flips with this little quad and they look awesome but we’ll get to that.
- The controller has trim adjustment, these are the two thin rectangles; one underneath the right stick and the other to the left of the right stick. The bottom one allows you to stop the quad drifting left or right and the other stops it drifting forward or backwards. Simply press in the opposite direction to the one it is travelling in until you are hovering without moving.
- Now we are trimmed correctly it is time to start moving about. To begin with use the right stick to move forward and backwards and then try left and right whilst using the throttle to maintain a constant height. Gentle input is all that is needed until you get more comfortable flying.
- Next we can begin to use the left stick to rotate (yaw in aircraft jargon) the quad. This is tricky as you also have to be careful not to adjust the throttle by accident.
- Notice how the stick inputs move the quad in relation to the LEDs. If the blue lights are towards you and you push left on the right stick the quad will fly to your left. Don’t let this catch you out!
- You’ve been flying for about 6-8 mins and you notice the LEDs are flashing, this means the batteries are about to die. Land the quad by SLOWLY reducing the throttle.Turn it off, then turn the controller off. Wait a few minutes for the motors and battery to cool down before you plug it back into the charger.
- “So what was that about flipping?” – Ah! I knew we’d come back to that soon, you’ve obviously mastered flying already and are feeling confident? Doesn’t really matter if you haven’t though as flips are carried out automatically! Check there is space above and below the quad before you start the flip as it will climb before it flips and drop slightly after.
- To perform a flip click the right stick in. The controller will start to beep every second or two and now push the right stick in the direction you want to flip.
- Okay you’ve mastered the basics, have done more flips than a gymnast and it’s time to up the sensitivity. This means the quad will fly faster and react more quickly to your inputs, for this reason you might want to be outside on a still day. Lots of quadcopters and RC planes etc. have dual rates (rates = sensitivity) but the Cheerson CX-10 has three!
- Click the right stick in and you will hear two beeps, this is the intermediate sensitivity. Click again for three beeps and you are in advanced mode! One more click will bring you back to the beginner setting (indicated by a single beep).
- If you crash and don’t reduce the throttle quickly enough the quad will enter a limp mode and will be unresponsive. Simply turn both it and the controller off and start again.
So that is it. Those are the instructions that should have been in the manual but weren’t.