I got lucky and borrowed a review model of this nice machine, the new Eye One Extreme V2! I haven’t flown much yet as I have found that reading the manual and becoming familiar is VERY important. Also, I carefully study the construction of the machine – I like to think “As above, so below”…..that is, if the machine looks well engineered it may fly nicely!
Of course, “real flyers” don’t care much what the box looks like. What they want to do is fly with the least amount of initial hassle…and they don’t want to be replacing parts the first time the drone hits the ground from 6 feet up.
I can’t speak to any of that now – but here is what I can say. Price? For what you get, the basic kit (brushless 180 mm Quadcopter) and batteries for the FPV R/C controller with built-in color screen. Pricing and other information is at https://www.droneart.com/
Anyone who remembers the first Extreme can picture the amazing array of electronic circuit boards that they fit into that mid-sized model. This model is CLEAN with a tiny and lightweight board that must weigh 1/4 that of the older model. The battery does not use the old connectors – but uses a spade system that seems especially robust. Custom batteries, circuits, charger and connectors – this ain’t your daddy’s first walkera put together from a bucket of parts!
Drone Art (RC Logger New Branding) has always had great written documentation and the Xtreme V2 is no exception. The manual is in full color and clearly explains what the model does – and what it should be used for. This is a “fun” machine – for learning and flying FPV. I can imagine camps, schools, Boys and Girls Clubs and other such institutions standardizing on something like this……IF it works.
Let’s face it – the first model of the Xtreme turned out to be a “hackers only” machine due to various problems. I loved flying mine but didn’t feel like throwing more money into it so I sold it before I had to upgrade the frame and everything else.
This machine looks different! For example, look at the bottom of one of the legs in the picture below. Now – your average consumer would say “OK, nice leg – let’s fly”…..but our eagle eye detects some VAST improvements in construction. The landing pads are very soft rubber and definitely have a LOT of play to make up for the shock of landing on a hard surface. White nylon replaceable braces seem to provide the actual strength of the arms – and they look as though they can take some abuse.
Prop guards are included – which might help with the protecting the camera when you hit a tree or a wall. I’ll have to give it a try
Here is our first introduction video:
Who is this Quadcopter for?
After a few minutes of flying (and crashing) the EOE a number of times I quickly came to the conclusion that I have been spoiled by GPS based camera drones and that I would have to relearn the “art of piloting. RC Logger mentions this in their documentation – spend some time becoming familiar with the basics before you “see what it can do”. I can, however, state that this is not a machine for beginners. Only intermediate and advanced pilots should consider this (or most racing machines) as the flight manners are quite aggressive. The machine is designed for outdoor use only – and, even then, in calm conditions or very light winds (<10MPH).
The included camera shoots HD (720) video and stills – so a still picture is relatively small….fine for web use, but not for commercial or industrial applications. Of course, this does not have a stabilizing gimbal so the video is likely to be shaky.
In summary, this is not a “camera drone” like a DJI or even a Parrot BeBop. It is a mid-level racing and FPV drone which can help those who desire to be REAL Pilots learn the ropes.
Here is our wrap-up initial test video with some FPV goggles trials and flying around the yard and cul-de-sac
The Eye One Extreme V2 which I received was pre-production. That is – the units are/were not available yet for purchase to the general public. I suspect there are some final QC issues mostly related to the strength of the leg assembly and other tuning (material and mold thickness). In my case, I found the machine a bit too fragile – again, could be due to pre-production.
The usual advice applies. Wait until a couple dozen other well known pilots (especially those who know FPV well) test these and base your decision(s) on how they hold up in crashes, etc. for the general public. I am also looking forward to the availability of parts so I can see how easy it is to replace some of the braces, legs and other parts which are subject to wear.
Whether or not plastic and nylon can outperform carbon fiber and/or aluminum and other materials used for FPV models (single piece mono-shells, etc.) remains to be seen. But, in the end, the machines which spend more time in the air and less on the ground will be the winners in the marketplace.