Also known as the X9E, this radio is an evolution of the very popular FrSky Taranis Plus with several refinements plus the very obvious tray layout. Tray radios are great for pilots that like to pinch fly, or need easier access to additional inputs.
Some of the new features for the Taranis E:
Please note that we sell mode 2 radios (throttle on left) the radios can be switched to mode 1, but it is a little involved.
The most important aspect for any transmitter is maintaining a rock solid connection with the receiver. FrSky is well known for the frequency hopping ACCST technology taking advantage of the entire 2.4GHz band resulting in excellent range and reliability. FrSky knows many things can affect the connection between Transmitter and receiver so RSSI (receiver signal strength indication) is incorporated into all telemetry receivers. The Taranis transmitter is continually monitoring the reception quality at the aircraft. The Taranis will alert the pilot before signal quality becomes critical. This saves planes and makes the hobby much safer!
In addition to RSSI, the Taranis has other safety features. Receiver Lock allows you to lock a specific model in the transmitter to one and only one receiver. No more flying (crashing) with the wrong program selected. Taranis has three different types of Failsafe. 1 - Hold last known commands, 2- Goto a programmed state (cut throttle, flaps down, etc. 3- No output. (Triggers flight controllers with "go home" feature.) The RSSI feature means you probably won't ever use the failsafe. Voice Alerts Just like having a copilot, the transmitter will give you voice alerts on speaker or through the headphone jack. Count down timers, low voltage warnings, landing gear down, thermal mode entered, etc. can all be set up with human recorded voice of your creation, or sound packages shared online from other hobbyists.
The open-source software for the Taranis has been developed by hobbyist’s in the R/C community. The programmers of the transmitter’s firmware and companion software which runs on Linux, Windows, and Macintosh are very receptive to input and requests from users. There are no limitations based on marketing decisions. If you can think of it, chances are the Taranis is capable of doing it. With 60 model memories, tons of mixes, 9 flight modes, sequencing, servo speed, programmed delay all kinds of triggers, and the ability to assign any channel to anything, it is hard to come up with something this radio can't do. With this level of complexity, you would think the programming would be a real nightmare, but thanks to the forward thinking of the open source community, we can set up and test our programs on our favorite computer (PC, Mac or Ubuntu), it even features a handy set up wizard that will take care of most of the work! But they also made it easy to share programs freely via the USB port, or micro SD card on the back of the Taranis.
Are you heavily invested in another RF system? No worries, the Taranis E actually has a normal JR style module built inside that will accept modules for other transmitting protocols. In the model setup you simply tell the system if you are using the module bay, and shut down the internal FrSky module. Now you can use your Futaba, Spektrum, JR, and other receivers if you have a transmitter module that fits in a JR style module bay. (Note, you will need to remove the antenna from the module and screw on an antenna pigtail to mount the module entenna outside of the radio case.
FrSky has taken the hobby to a whole new level as they have evolved the transmitter to be more than a steering wheel. This is something truly special!
It's no wonder people have been excited about this new transmitter. This hobby has never seen a more reliable and more affordable radio. FrSky has an excellent reputation for building high quality, highly reliable telemetry systems. The Taranis takes everything they have learned and pushes it to the next level!
The Combo comes with the following items:
The truth is that once you have picked up and used the X9E just about all other radios feel like toys. It is hard to reconcile in your mind that this $300 radio feels better, performs better, is more flexible and functional etc etc than all but the most outrageously expensive TX's on the market. Why anybody would spend the hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars to get Spektrum, Futaba, Graupner or pretty much any other radio over this boggles the mind.
So why is it so great? The build quality id fantastic. Your ability to upgrade, replace and alter the way you handle the radio is extensive. For instance I removed the side handles/mounts so I could more easily hold the set in a traditional manner. Even when I cantilever there is still plenty of room to rest my hands or I can easily put them back on. The strong aluminum arms that fold right up into the body of the radio are fantastic and extremely well made and strong. I was able to easily create my own cantilever bars but you can buy them as well now. There are a ton of switches, pots sliders and the gimbals are smooth. However they could be a little better and fortunately there is an upgrade or you can just buy an old radio with nice gimbals and install them. There are instructions and videos for doing this online.
Don't forget that all of this interfaces seamlessly with the OpenTX software. SOftware that is available for both PC, MAC and I believe Linux. As a Mac user I must say it is refreshing to be dealing with a business that recognizes that as of a few years ago there are more Macs being used in private residences than PC's now. Among households with at least one college graduate it is overwhelmingly so. I am waiting for the cans of nuts at CleanFLight etc to catch up and release their software for the platform most of their customers have. The number of friends I have who have to pull out old laptops just to manage their flight software is sad. Not a problem with Taranis and OpenTX.
Of course not everything is perfect. Here are somethings I wish would be fixed or added.
1. More mobile App suport.
2. OpenTX still does not have all of the X9E sliders available to choose on the simulator or setup.
3. I wish there was a center strap mount you could put on the TX.
4. I would rather be able to just plug modules in rather than install them internally after taking my TX apart.
5. I would rather have a different antenna set you could change to over the current version.
6. I wish there were a back bracket to make mounting displays and other devices using the all the kits available.
7. I do not see why the lower display could not have been full color.
That is pretty much it. The X9E has been one of the most gratifying purchases I have ever made. Thank You FrSky for making such a powerful TX available to the majority of users. This is Open Source Crowd Sourcing at its very best
Haven't flow with this yet but first impression upon unboxing is that this is a ridiculously high quality radio. Straightforward and extremely feature rich interface, much more intuitive to navigate than say... a hitec. All pots, switches, sliders and gimbals are very high quality with buttery smooth and positive action. VERY bright, sharp, top display, should be no problem to see in direct sunlight. Fit and finish of the case is extraordinary. Comes with a very nice shoulder harness. All around, very high quality product obviously designed an manufactured by people who know what they're doing. Exceeded expectations by a long way.
I'm a beginner, but I begin to like this radio over my 9XR very much . Its quite big but i will be used to :)
Do it! I have suffered from pain in my thumbs when flying for years and I even had to stop completely for a time (12 years) but with the X9E I can fly pain free for the first time since I was a child.
I cannot recommend this TX highly enough. The switches are nice and the gimbals are better than anything else in the price range. At the risk of inciting an attack from the Troll, this TX can do pretty much anything the Jeti systems can (with the exception of their wireless programming type-stuff, and let's face it, with OpenTX it is probably just a matter of time) and for a fraction of the price.
I flew at a contest a couple of weeks ago and other than a few jokes along the lines of "will you use that tray to carry the beers later?" it seemed to be well received. Most importantly, I love it. If you wanted to take it off me you would have to pry it out of my cold, dead hands.
As a pinch flyer, I have been flying using radios installed in trays for years. I have seen tray radios before but not up close and they were out of my price range in any case. This radio looks wonderful and flys wonderful. I bought a Taranis Plus in November. It is a great radio as well but it is optimized for flyers who grip the radio such as thumb flyers. The X9E with it's smooth face, long gimbal sticks and greater return is optimized for people like me pinch flyers. There are a very few issues that I will work out getting the radio to hang exactly like I want.
I bought my first FrSky transmitter Nov 2014. I bought it for affordable access to telemetry and software that would allow me to make real use of it. Then I discovered the full value of Opentx. I can not say enough after using Futaba for years. Frsky hardware has been near flawless. Aloft and Frsky will take care of you.