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In the world of radio-controlled aircraft, few things can match the enjoyment that is provided by RC helicopters. Regardless of your age or level of experience, operating these devices can be a fun way to spend your free time. As the popularity of these helicopters rises; the quality of the available options increases with it. If you are looking to buy one, this article will help you find the best RC helicopter on the market today.
What to know before picking an RC helicopter
Before making a purchase decision, here are some of the few things that you need to familiarize yourself with.
The right size depends on how you plan to use the RC helicopter. Bbest outdoor rc helicopter that is designed for outdoor use need to be bulky enough to handle exposure to wind and other elements, whereas best indoor rc helicopter use requires smaller devices that can navigate through the narrow confines of the house without bumping into anything.
This indicates the amount of time that the unit can spend in flight before running out of charge. The average flight time of RC helicopters is typically around 10 minutes. This metric is generally determined by two variables; the size of the battery and the weight of the device. To make that you are getting a decent flight time out of your RC helicopter, the minimum battery size that you should be looking for is 150 mAh.
Also known as the control range, this metric refers to the maximum distance that the unit can fly from the controller. This factor is not that important when it comes to indoor use. In the outdoors, however, a longer range is preferable. RC helicopters that boast a long flight range are characterized by extra sensitive receptors and high frequency 2.4 GHz transmitters.
Operating RC helicopters does come with its share of headaches. Not the least of which is having to replace some essential parts from time to time. This is pretty much an inevitability since your unit is bound to crash or collide with another object at some point. Before buying a particular model, make sure that the manufacturer offers a lot of options when it comes to spare parts.
The durability will mostly be determined by the quality of the engineering and the sturdiness of the materials that were used to construct the unit. Some of the most common materials that are used for the frame of the RC helicopter include reinforced plastic, carbon fiber, and aluminum. It is advisable that you avoid anything that looks to be made from very cheap and thin plastic.
Frequently asked questions
1 – Can RC helicopters handle rain?
RC helicopters don’t have any waterproofing properties and are not designed to operate in a downpour. If water gets inside the device, there is a good chance that it would cause irreparable damage to it.
2 – Can I boost the flight time and control range of my RC helicopter?
Improving the flight time and control range is possible in most cases. To achieve this, you will need to get a bigger battery and a remote controller that has longer frequencies.
3 – Are RC helicopters child-friendly?
Most of them are not. However, there are some models that are specifically designed for children. Even in that case, parent supervision is still recommended.
Best RC helicopter reviews
1 – WLtoys Large V912 4CH
- WLtoys V912 Helicopter
- Control Distance: About 150m Flying Time: About 8 Minutes Charging Time: About 60 Minutes
- 3D action & side flying Up, Down, Forward, Backward, Turn Right, Turn Left, Left Fly,...
- Frequency: 2.4GHz Channel: 4 Channels
This is the perfect option to kick off our list. The V912 4CH is one of the largest RC helicopters on the market and it comes with more features than the vast majority of its competitors. It has a 2.4 GHz frequency remote that gives you a wide range of flight motions. In fact, the aerial maneuvers that this unit is capable of cover the full spectrum of 3D flying. More importantly, you can expect a steady and smooth flights thanks to the high-quality gyro that helps stabilize the helicopter. As far as power is concerned, the 7.4V 1500 mAh battery can deliver up to 8 minutes of flight time and takes around an hour to fully recharge.
- This unit is very durable
- It produces a realistic sound
- It is easy to operate
- It retains its stability even in windy conditions
- The charge time is too long
- The tail rotor requires constant adjusting
2 – Syma S107G
- S107 and S107G differ only in labeling. Either may be shipped.
- Stabile Flight Characteristics
- Easy to Fly
- Great for Beginners
If you are a beginner on a tight budget, you will have a hard time finding a better option than this RC helicopter. This affordable RC helicopter was specifically designed for people who need a device that is easy to control and maneuver around. Besides its amazing flight settings, the efficient design of the S107G 3 ensures that it remains balanced and stable during the flight. Another great component that is worth talking about is the brushed motor that powers the S107G 3. It does not emit a lot of noise and it is quite effective when it comes to providing stable flights.
- The affordable price
- It is extremely durable
- It is easy to control thanks to the 2 joysticks
- The charge time is short considering the price
- It is not suited for outdoor usage
- The flight range is too narrow
3 – SkyCo RC
- Good quality helicopter with camera to take pictures and videos
- Channels for 6 directions: up, down, forward, backward, turn clockwise and anti-clockwise
- 4-in-1 infra-red receiver assemble 3-axis gyro, ESC, mixer and receiver
- Metal alloy frame with elastic blades and flybar endure crash. Transmitter supports 3...
This list would not be complete if we did not include an RC helicopter that is equipped with a camera. The SkyCo combines a sleek design with a number of high-end features that are rarely seen in sub $50 RC helicopters. It boasts a foldable design that is highly convenient for the storing and carrying of the unit and features an outstanding set of flight capabilities. It is remarkably stable and easy to control regardless of the user’s level of experience.
Since this is an entry-level product, you should have realistic expectations about the image quality of the camera. It is not exactly professional-grade, but the resolution is still decent enough for taking regular photos and videos in the outdoors. That’s why it is considered as a best rc helicopter with camera.
- It is equipped with a decent camera
- Flight control is beginner-friendly
- The LED lights are ideal for flying at night
- It is durable and well constructed
- It does not handle well when flying against strong winds
- It is relatively slow
4 – Syma S109G
- Stabile Flight Characteristics
- Easy to Fly
- Great for Beginners
- Stable Flight Characteristics
This is another great model from Syma that is feature-rich and easy to fly. While it is slightly more expensive than the previous option, it is also better designed and more suited for a wider range of aerial motions. Moreover, it does not seem to have the same backward orientation issues that have plagued entry-level Syma helicopters for ears. This makes it slightly better at flying outside. With that being said, outdoor use is still not recommended by the manufacturer.
The brushed motor is another major selling point of this RC helicopter. It generates a soothing realistic noise and it is capable of propelling the device at remarkable speeds. As for the battery, it recharges in less than 60 minutes and can offer up to 10 minutes of flight time when used conservatively.
- The design looks high-end considering the price point
- The LED lights are helpful when navigating at night
- The helicopter can hover steadily with little effort
- The flights are very stable
- One of the best rc helicopter for beginners
- The range is underwhelming
- The power plug doesn’t feel sturdy enough
5 – Haktoys HAK303
- Claim your spot in the sky with the HAK303! With ultra-bright LED lights around the...
- Easy to fly with a built-in gyroscope for maximum stability. Feel confident in flying with...
- Recommended for indoor flight due to infrared frequency. (Flying under direct sunlight may...
- Optimum charge time: 30 minutes, flight time: 6-8 minutes, flight range: Up to 50 feet!
The options that we reviewed so far are all age rated 12 and above. The Haktoys HAK303 is the only model that is specifically designed for children below that age. It boasts several characteristics that are tailored to the needs of children, namely a mini remote control that suits their level of dexterity and a flexible canopy design that is constructed to withstand frequent crashes. The range, flight time, and recharge time of the battery are all ideal for indoor use and the adjustable settings allow the parents to control the speed of the helicopter while the child is in the process of learning how to operate it.
- This is the best rc helicopter for kids
- The remote controller is easy to use
- The frame is highly durable
- It had adjustable speeds
- The tail rotor is prone to overheating
Now that you have a comprehensive idea of how RC helicopters operate, you should be able to pick the model that is ideal for you. At the end of the day, these devices are very affordable and regardless of the option that you choose, you are guaranteed to have fun with it and get your money’s worth.
You may also be interested in Drones Under 300 category, so check it out!
Last update on 2020-01-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API