RCU Review: Futaba T7CA 2.4Ghz 7-Channel Radio

RCU Review: Futaba T7CA 2.4Ghz 7-Channel Radio
 RCU Review: Futaba T7CA 2.4Ghz 7-Channel Radio
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Review by: Ken Isaac (RCKen) | Email me
Introduction
Specifications
First Look
The Technology
Setup
Airplane Setup Menus
Helicopter Setup Menus
At The Field
Summary
Contact Info
Unless you've been living in a cave with no contact to the outside world it's a pretty
good chance that you've heard about the new technology of 2.4 Ghz Spread
Spectrum radios. With all of the capabilities of the Spread Spectrum radios it's
pretty easy to understand what all the excitement is about with this new
technology. Spread Spectrum radios have all but eliminated interference created
by other radios in use at the same time. This means that a Spread Spectrum radio
can be operated and will not be interfered with if someone else turns on a radio.
No more keeping track of frequency pins, no more walking the flight line trying to
find if anybody else is on your frequency, and no more worrying that somebody
flying a park flyer 2 blocks from your field will knock your plane out of the air.
Futaba
Distributed Exclusively in the
U.S.A., Canada and Mexico by:
Great Planes Model Distributors
P.O. Box 9021
Champaign, IL 61826-9021
http://2.4gigahertz.com
www.greatplanes.com
2.4 Spread Spectrum
eliminates the need for a
frequency pin
Now controls dual elevator
servos
Well laid out and designed
transmitter
Price is easily affordable to
a large segment of pilots
Easy to program and setup
Small receiver size is
perfect for smaller aircraft
such as Park Flyers
LCD screen seemed small
and crowded
Manual jumps around
Transmitter battery a bit
small
With any new technology many will be worried that there are going to be "bugs"
with it and will decide to wait before adopting the technology. Often, manufacturers
will release a radio and work out the bugs as they come up. But when it comes to
2.4 Ghz technology Futaba is different. All of Futaba's 2.4 Ghz FASST (Futaba
Advanced Spread Spectrum Technology) radios are fully tested, well-engineered,
totally reliable products. Futaba has hands-on experience with 2.4 Ghz technology
that stretches back 15 years, long before anyone considered its value in hobby
application. That's when Futaba's industrial R/C division - designers of
radio-control tools for construction, civil engineering, and similar uses - began
employing and perfecting their own 2.4 Ghz equipment. Now Futaba is bringing
that experience in 2.4 Ghz Spread Spectrum technology to the RC hobby market to
provide us with a fully test and completely reliable product.
To speed development in this technology many radio manufacturers are converting
their current radio systems to the 2.4 Ghz Spread Spectrum technology. This
speeds up the time it takes them to release radios as they are not reinventing the
wheel by developing totally new radio systems. Futaba's latest release is just that;
one of their most popular radios converted to Spread Spectrum. Futaba's latest
release is the 2.4 Ghz Spread Spectrum T7CA, a 7-channel system capable of
controlling both aircraft and helicopters. It's a system that offers much of Futaba's
9C set-up versatility matched to 4-channel ease of use. It's a great radio for those
flyers who want the technology of 2.4 Ghz but don't want to spend extra money for
a more expensive radio with more channels than they need. I think that the 7C will
be a perfect fit radio for a large majority of flyers that need a 2.4 Spread Spectrum radio.
So, let's dive in and take a look at what the T7CA has to offer....
Futaba T7CA 2.4Ghz 7-Channel Radio System
Price: $319.98* (Tower Hobbies Part # LXSEJ8)
Features
Futaba's FASST (Futaba Advanced Spread Spectrum Technology) shifts every two milliseconds virtually
eliminating signal conficts and interruptions unlike other 2.4GHz systems that only stay on one or two frequencies
Dual antenna diversity enables FASST system to automatically and seamlessly select the best reception between
the two antennas built into the receiver ensuring that the aircraft stays under constant control of transmitter
regardless of altitude
Newly designed Dial-N-Key jog dial allows cursor movement in four directions for very user friendly navigating
through menus and programming
Includes
Futaba 7C 2.4GHz Transmitter R617FS FAST 7-Ch Receiver
NR-4J 600mAh 4.8V NiCd Receiver Battery
FBC-19B(4) 120V Battery Charger
Four S3004 Standard Ball Bearing Servos
NT8S600B 600mAh 9.6V NiCd Transmitter Battery
Heavy Duty Switch Harness w/Charge Cord
Black Transmitter Neck Strap
Servo mounting hardware and instruction manual
Specifications
Available with 4 S3152 digital high-torque servos
(FUTK7000/7001); 4 S3004 ball bearing servos (FUTK7002); or
4 S3001 ball bearing servos (FUTK7003)
Dial 'n Key programming
Airplane/heli software
Assignable switches/functions
Up/down timer
Mode 1-4 selectable (modes 3 and 4 available via transmitter software)
Large 72 x 32 LCD screen with adjustable contrast
10-model memory
6-character model naming
Digital trims, trim memory, EPA, subtrims and servo reversing (all channels)
Dual/Triple rates - aileron/elevator/rudder. (Note: Available when used with 3-position switch)
Exponential (aileron/elevator/rudder)
Adjustable throttle cut
Fail-safe
NT8S600B 600mAh Tx NiCd w/dual-output charger
Trainer system (cord required)
Flap switch
Retract switch
Variable rate knob (channel 6)
Airplane advanced menu
3 programmable (P-Mix) mixes Flaperon Flap trim Air brake Elevator-to-flap mixing Flap-to-elevator mixing V-tail mixing Elevon mixing Aileron-to-rudder mixing Snap roll Dual elevator servo mixing
Helicopter advanced menu
Governor select makes it possible to match rpm/blade speed to maneuvers
Swash to throttle mixing helps heli pilots
keep their rpm steady 3 programmable mixes Throttle curve (5-point normal, idle up 1 &
2) Pitch curve (5-point normal, idle up 1 & 2) Revo mixing Gyro mixing Hovering throttle Hovering pitch Throttle hold Trim offset 6 swash plate set-ups (5 CCPM options)
* Note: This price is for the package listed above. Also available are two packages with the radio and receiver only, no
servos are included
Futaba 7C 7-Channel 2.4 Ghz (Air) with no servos, $279, FUTK7004
Futaba 7C 7-Channel 2.4 Ghz (Heli) with no servos, $279, FUTK7005
Futaba R617FS 2.4 Ghz FASST 7 Channel Reciever
Note: For this review I did not receive the entire radio setup. I received the radio and receiver only, and did not receive
the rest of what would normally be included when this system is purchased. Not shown here are all accessories such as
the receiver battery, battery charger, servos, servo mounting hardware, power switch, and neck strap. In addition, I did
not receive a production copy of the users manual, but rather a printed copy of the final draft of the manual.
Anybody familiar with previous Futaba radios will immediately recognize the T7C since the exterior of the radio is
identical to Futaba's older 7C radios. The radio gimbals and sticks are of high quality and are laid out so they are
comfortable and easy to use. Each of the four axis has an associated digital trim tab for fine-tuning of the plane in flight.
The biggest difference between the T7C and older radios is the antenna. The antenna is made of a hard rubber and is
about 4" long. The antenna needs to be placed in a position perpendicular to the radio while in operation.
Located on the upper left of the radio are 4 of the radio's switches. Directly above the left control stick are two
2-position switches. As with all of the switches on the T7C radio these switches are user programmable and can be set
to almost any functions that the radio is capable of performing. The inner of the two switches is longer than the outer
switch to make it easier to find while flying the plane. Located on the top left of the radio are two more switches. One
switch is a two position switch and the other is spring loaded, which would normally be used for a trainer function or a
throttle kill. Directly above the right stick are one 2-position switch and a variable rate knob that can be used for such
functions as controlling the throw of flaps. On the top right side of the radio is one 3-position switch.
Located on the back of the radio are the battery compartment, a trainer cord connection, and a radio status indicator.
While it is kind of difficult to see in the pictures, the indicator is located in a recessed hole below the antenna. Contained
here is a red and green LED, which indicates the proper operation of the radio signal when binding the receiver.
Programming and setting up the T7C radio is facilitated by a LCD display, 4 navigation buttons, and Futaba's "Dial 'n
Key". The buttons and the Dial 'n Key allow for moving through the radio's programming screens and for changing the
information in each screen. I found it very easy to move through the screens with the controls provided and setting up
the radio was accomplished with very few problems. One of my only problems with the radio was the LCD screen. I felt
that it was a bit small and that the screens it displayed all seemed a bit "crowded". But this did not take away from the
functionality of the programming setup.
The radio comes with a 600 Mah Nickel-Cadmium battery to power the transmitter.
The Manual
I've included a few shots of the manual that I received with this radio but I really can't make any comments based on this
as the manual that I received was a copy of the working draft from Futaba. From the draft I could tell that the manual
was very informative and did a good job of explaining the operation of the Futaba T7C 2.4 Ghz radio. It covered all the
functions of the radio and gave a short step-by-step explanation of how to program each step in the radio. It also did a
good job of covering the installation of the FASST receiver as well as binding the receiver to the transmitter.
The Receiver One of the first things that will strike most people when they see this system is the
receiver. Immediately most will notice the size of the receiver. The receiver is
approximately one and a half inches by 1 inch, and only about a third of an inch thick
making this receiver small enough to fit into even the smaller park flyer systems that
are becoming more popular every day. As you can see, when shown next to other
Futaba receivers, the R617FS receiver is quite a bit smaller. But don't let the size fool
you; this receiver is more than capable of handling the needs of large planes with
huge servos. This receiver should be more than enough for just about every pilot out there.
The next thing that most will notice is the antenna, or more accurately, antennas.
Most people who are used to older radios will notice that the 3' long piece of wire used
as an antenna is gone. In its place are two wires that are used as the antennas. To
be more specific the antennas are only the last 1-1/4" of the wire (the clear wire
portion) on each side. The other 4" of the antenna structures is simple coaxial wire
that allows for placement of the antennas inside of the plane for best reception.
Futaba has chosen to use the two antennas to achieve what they call Dual Antenna
Diversity. The signal for the 2.4 Ghz is a much shorter wavelength than older radios,
and because of this it's entirely possible that the antenna could become shielded by
items inside of the fuselage which could include the engine, muffler, or carbon fiber
parts. With the dual antennas used for reception one antenna should still be able to
receive a signal if the other antenna becomes shielded.
In order for the Dual Antenna Diversity to operate properly the antennas need to be
properly installed in the airplane. The two antennas need to be installed so that they
are mounted 90 degrees from each other. When I installed them in my plane it was a
simple matter to position the antennas. Two small pieces of tubing glued in place in
the fuselage keeps the antennas in place. As with other radios, care must be taken
when positioning the antennas so that they are not near RF noise producing items
such as engine ignition units and electronic speed controls (ESC).
NOTE: This information is provided by Futaba's 2.4 Ghz website
Other 2.4GHz systems hold firm to one or two frequencies, increasing the potential for interference.
The frequency of Futaba 2.4GHz FASST shifts every 2 milliseconds, so there are no signal conflicts or
interruptions - and no need for a frequency pin!
Patent # 6,141,392
2.4GHz FASST scans incoming data and applies sophisticated error correction techniques ? resulting
in a system that gives you a solid, impenetrable connection with your model.
Futaba 2.4GHz FASST systems seamlessly select the best reception between two receiver antennas,
so there's no loss of signal.
Futaba 2.4GHz FASST system transmitters leave the factory with a unique and permanent ID code.
Once linked to the receiver, the code ensures that the receiver will recognize and respond ONLY to
that transmitter. The linking process is simple...just push a button on the receiver.
Setting up the T7C
Note: The radio that I received for this review was the package that contains only the radio and receiver only. I didn't
receive any servos for use with this radio during the review, and because of this I had to use my own servos. Some may
notice that the wires for the servos in my review plane are "the other guy's" equipment. They are the servos that I already
had installed in my plane and I used them simply because they were already in place. This is actually good because it
does show that this radio will work with any brand servo the end user may have with no issues. My servos had the
standard "Z" connectors on them and they were able to plug directly into the FASST receiver without needing any further
modifications.
To try out the Futaba T7C radio I decided to use my tried and trusted Kaos 60. This plane has been with me for quite a
while now and has turned into quite a little test bed for items that I try out or review. Installing the radio in this plane was
a very simple matter. I placed the receiver in foam and then positioned the dual antennas so they could be positioned on
the top of the fuselage. To place the antennas I used a tip provided by RCU reviewer
Minnflyer when he reviewed the Futaba 6EX radio
Futaba 6EX radio. He glued small pieces of tubing in place and used those to keep the dual antennas properly
positioned in the plane. This made a quick, easy, and neat installation of the receiver. With the antennas properly
positioned it was an easy task to connect the servos to the receiver and finish packing foam around the receiver.
As with most Spread Spectrum radios in order for the receiver to work properly with the transmitter it must be "bound" to
that transmitter. Normally the user will not have to bind the receiver to the transmitter as this step should have already
been done at the factory when the radio was packaged. The transmitter and receiver will be ready to go when the user
opens the box. But if for some reason they two are not bound together it is a very simple procedure for the user to
perform. To bind the receiver to the transmitter first turn on the transmitter and then turn on the receiver. Located
between the two antenna wires is a small button recessed in the receiver case. Press and hold this button to bind it.
While binding, the LED's in the transmitter will flash and finally change to a solid green when the receiver is bound. The
button can then be released. Next up was getting my plane set up on the new transmitter.
Programming the radio for the setup needed on my plane turned out to be a very easy task. It took me about 10 minutes
to have my plane completely set up on the new radio. It was very simple process to set the throw direction and end
points for all of the control surfaces, including the throttle.
While not "technically" a set up step, I want to discuss range checking the radio here.
With older radios range checking was done by walking 30-50 paces away from the
radio and lowering the antenna while working the controls to see if the radio still works
properly. Of course that's hard to do with a 2.4 Ghz radio because you can't lower the
antenna. Futaba has taken care of this by providing a means of "powering down" the
radio so that it transmits with less power than normal. This will allow the pilot to check
the radio for proper operation before flying. To put the radio into "Power Down Mode"
(P.DN) the user needs to turn on the radio while holding down the Dial-N-Key button.
The radio will power up with the symbol "P.DN" in the lower portion of the LCD display,
and will emit a beep every 3 seconds while in power down mode. The radio will stay in
this mode for 90 seconds before returning to normal operation. The user can return the
radio to normal mode by pressing and holding the Dial 'n Key button for about two seconds, or the user can simply turn
the radio off and then back on again.
Programming the T7C
While I have heard some say that it's difficult to program the more advanced Futaba radios, I was pleasantly surprised to
find that wasn't the case with the T7C. Once I was into the programming modes I found that it was very easy to move
around to the different functions of the radio. I was able to figure out a good bit of the functions of the radio without
referring to the manual, and the points that I didn't understand were easy to find in the manual and get figured out.
While I don't want to try and replace or rewrite the Futaba manual here, I do want to spend a little bit of time and go
through the programming and screenshots so that you can get an idea of what this radio is capable of.
As we get started let's take a quick look at the controls used for programming the T7C
radio. The LCD display is centered on the radio and measures 7/8" x 2-1/8". Located
on the left side of the display are two push buttons labeled Mode/Page and End. On
the right side of the display are two buttons that control the selection or the cursor, one
button for up and left and the other button for down and right. To the far right of the
display is the Dial 'N Key for further programming choices. This control is turned to
navigate through choices on the screen and then pressed to select the item. One great
example of using the Dial 'N Key is when naming the model in the radio. For each
letter in the name the Dial 'N Key is turned to scroll through the alphabet and number,
and then when the proper selection is found pressing the Dial 'N Key will make the
selection.
To get started with the programming the radio needs to be turned on and then hold down the Mode/Page button
for one second to get into the programming mode on the radio.
Once into the programming screens of the T7C pressing the Mode/Page button will switch back and forth between
the Basic and Advanced menus. With the either the basic or advanced menu displayed you can navigate through
the menu by using the Dial 'N Key.
Basic Airplane Menu Screen
Model Sub-menu
Dual rate/Exponential sub-menu
End Point sub-menu
Sub-trim sub-menu
Servo reversing sub-menu
Trim sub-menu
Throttle cut sub-menu
Fail safe sub-menu
Parameter sub-menu
Timer sub-menu
Trainer sub-menu
Advanced Airplane Menu Screen
P-mixes sub-menu
Flaperon sub-menu
Flap trim sub-menu
Airbrake sub-menu
Elevator to flap mix sub-menu
Flap to elevator mix sub-menu
V-tail sub-menu
Elevon sub-menu
Ailevator sub-menu
Aileron to rudder mix sub-menu
Snap sub-menu
Basic Airplane Menu Functions
Model Sub-menu
Dual rate / Exponential Sub-menu
Model submenu: includes three functions that manage Dual/triple rates and exponential (D/R,EXP): assigns
model memory: Model Select, Model Copy, and Model adjusted rates and exponential.
Name.
Model Select: This function selects which of the
10 model memories in the transmitter to set up
or fly.
Model Copy: copies the current model data into
another model memory in the transmitter.
Dual/Triple Rates: reduce/increase the servo
travel by flipping a switch, dual rates affect
the control listed, such as aileron,
Exponential: changes the response curve of
the servos relative to the stick position to
make flying more pleasant.
Model Name: assigns a name to the current
model memory.
Endpoint Sub-menu
Sub-Trim Sub-menu
End Point of servo travel adjustment: the most
flexible version of travel adjustment available. It
independently adjusts each end of each individual
servo's travel, rather than one setting for the servo
that affects both directions.
Servo Reversing Sub-menu
Sub-trim: makes small changes or corrections to the
neutral position of each servo. Range is -120 to +120,
with 0 setting, the default, being no Sub-trim.
Trim Sub-menu
Servo reversing: changes the direction an individual
servo responds to a control stick motion.
Throttle Cut Sub-menu
Throttle cut: provides an easy way to stop the engine
by flipping a switch (with Throttle Stick at idle).
Trim: resets and adjusts effectiveness of digital trims.
Fail Safe Sub-menu
Fail Safe (loss of clean signal and low receiver
battery) submenu: sets responses in case of loss of
signal or low receiver battery.
Parameter Sub-menu
Parameter submenu: sets those parameters you
would likely set once, and then not disturb again.
Model Reset: completely resets all data in the
individual model you have currently selected.
Timer Sub-menu
Up/Down Timer functions: controls an electronic
clock used to keep track of time remaining in a
competition time allowed, flying time on a tank of
fuel, amount of time on a battery, etc..
Model Type: sets the type of programming
used for this model, either airplane (acro) or
helicopter (heli)
Trainer Sub-menu
Trainer: for training novice pilots with optional trainer
cord connecting 2 transmitters. The instructor has
several levels of controllability.
Advanced Airplane Menu Functions
P-Mixes Sub-menu
Flaperon Sub-menu
The 7C contains three separate linear programmable
mixes.
There are a variety of reasons you might want to use
these mixes. A few are listed here.
Flaperon mixing function uses one servo on each of
the two ailerons, and uses them for both aileron and
flap function. For flap effect, the ailerons raise/lower
simultaneously. Of course, aileron function (moving in
opposite directions) is also performed.
To correct bad tendencies of the aircraft (such
as rolling in response to rudder input).
To automatically correct for a particular action
(such as lowering elevator when flaps are
lowered).
To operate a second channel in response to
movement in a first channel (such as
increasing the amount of smoke oil
in response to more throttle application, but
only when the smoke switch is active).
To turn off response of a primary control in
certain circumstances (such as simulating one
engine flaming-out on a twin, or
throttle-assisted rudder turns, also with a
twin).
Flap Trim Sub-menu
Airbrake Sub-menu
Flap-trim allows the flap action to be set in a way
Airbrake is one function that is really made up of a
that it can be adjusted with the VR dial. series of pre-programmed mixes all done for you
within the radio. Airbrake simultaneously moves the
flap and elevator, and is usually used to make steep
descents or to limit increases in airspeed in dives.
Elevator to Flap Mix Sub-menu
Elevator to Flap Mix: This mix makes the flaps drop
or rise whenever the Elevator stick is moved. It is
most commonly used to make tighter pylon turns or
squarer corners in maneuvers. In most cases, the
flaps droop (are lowered) when up elevator is
commanded.
Flap to Elevator Mix Sub-menu
Flap To Elevator Mix: This mix makes the elevator
move whenever the flaps are moved. This mix is
used to compensate for any pitching created by the
flap.
V-Tail Sub-menu
Elevon Sub-menu
V-Tail mixing is used with v-tail aircraft so that both
elevator and rudder functions are combined for the
two tail surfaces. The elevator and rudder travel can
be adjusted independently.
Ailevator Sub-menu
Elevon: used with delta wings, flying wings, and
other tailless aircraft that combine aileron and
elevator functions, using two servos, one on each
elevon.
Aileron to Rudder Mix Sub-menu
Ailevator: Many models use two elevator servos,
plugged in to separate receiver channels. Benefits
Ability to adjust each servo's center and end
points for perfectly matched travel.
Aileron to Rudder mixing is a pre-programmed linear
mix. This mix is used to mix rudder operation with
aileron operation automatically, to make realistic
coordinated turns. It is especially effective when
turning and banking scale models or large models
that resemble full-sized aircraft.
Ease of assembly, not requiring torque rods for
a single servo to drive 2 servos.
Elevators acting also as ailerons for extreme
stunt flying or more realistic jet flying.
Redundancy, for example in case of a servo
failure or mid-air collision.
Snap Sub-Menu
This function allows you to execute snap rolls by
flipping a switch, providing the same input every
time. It also removes the need to change dual rates
on the 3 channels prior to performing a snap, as
Snap-Roll always takes the servos to the same
position, regardless of dual rates, inputs held during
the snap, etc.
Basic Helicopter Menu Screen
Model Sub-menu
Dual rate/Exponential sub-menu
End Point sub-menu
Sub-trim sub-menu
Servo reversing sub-menu
Trim sub-menu
Throttle cut sub-menu
Fail safe sub-menu
Parameter sub-menu
Throttle Curve (Normal)
Pitch Curve (Normal)
Revo
Timer sub-menu
Trainer sub-menu
Advanced Helicopter Menu Screen
Throttle curve (advanced) Sub-menu
Pitch curve (advanced) Sub-menu
Revo Mix Sub-menu
Gyro sub-menu
Hover Throttle sub-menu
Hover Pitch sub-menu
Throttle Hold sub-menu
Offset sub-menu
Governor sub-menu
Swashplate to Throttle mix sub-menu
P-Mixes sub-menu
Basic Helicopter Menu Functions
Model Sub-menu
Model submenu: includes three functions that
manage model memory: Model Select, Model
Copy, and Model Name.
Model Select: This function selects which
of the 10 model memories in the
transmitter to set up or fly.
Model Copy: copies the current model
data into another model memory in the
transmitter.
Dual rate / Exponential Sub-menu
Dual/triple rates and exponential (D/R,EXP): assigns
adjusted rates and exponential.
Dual/Triple Rates: reduce/increase the servo travel
by flipping a switch, dual rates affect the control
listed, such as aileron,
Exponential: changes the response curve of the
servos relative to the stick position to make flying
more pleasant.
Model Name: assigns a name to the
current model memory.
Endpoint Sub-menu
End Point of servo travel adjustment: the most
Sub-Trim Sub-menu
Sub-trim: makes small changes or corrections to the
flexible version of travel adjustment available. It neutral position of each servo. Range is -120 to +120, with
independently adjusts each end of each
0 setting, the default, being no Sub-trim
individual servo's travel, rather than one setting
for the servo that affects both directions.
Servo Reversing Sub-menu
Trim Sub-menu
Servo reversing: changes the direction an
individual servo responds to a control stick
motion.
Trim: resets and adjusts effectiveness of digital trims.
Throttle Cut Sub-menu
Fail Safe Sub-menu
Throttle cut: provides an easy way to stop the
engine by flipping a switch (with Throttle Stick
at idle).
Fail Safe (loss of clean signal and low receiver battery)
submenu: sets responses in case of loss of signal or low
receiver battery.
Parameter Su-menu
Throttle Curve (Normal)
Parameter submenu: sets those parameters you
would likely set once, and then not disturb
again.
Throttle Curve (Normal}: Inputs the normal (NORM) throttle
curve, which is usually not a linear response to the throttle
stickmotion. The Throttle Curve has 5 separate points of
adjustment to allow for finer control of helicopter.
Model Reset: completely resets all data in .
the individual model you have currently
selected.
Type: The 7C radios support 6 basic
swashplate setups, including "single
servo" (H- 1 - most helicopters use this
type) and 5 types of CCPM (cyclic and
collective pitch mixing). A "single servo"
swashplate uses one servo for each axis:
aileron, elevator (cyclic pitch), and
collective pitch. CCPM helicopters utilize
a combination of servos working together
to achieve the 3 axes of motion.
Pitch Curve (Normal)
Revo Sub-menu
Pitch Curve (Normal): inputs the normal (NORM)
collective pitch curve, the collective pitch curve
for flight near hover. The Pitch Curve has 5
separate points of adjustment to allow for finer
control of helicopter.
Timer Sub-menu
REVO.: mixes collective pitch commands to the rudder (a
PITCH-RUDDER mix) to suppress the torque generated by
changes in the main rotor's collective pitch angle, keeping
the model from yawing when throttle is applied.
Trainer Sub-menu
Up/Down Timer functions: controls an electronic
clock used to keep track of time remaining in a
competition time allowed, flying time on a tank
Trainer: for training novice pilots with optional trainer cord
connecting 2 transmitters. The instructor has several levels
of controllability.
of fuel, amount of time on a battery, etc.
Advanced Helicopter Menu Functions
Throttle Curve (Advanced) Sub-menu
Pitch Curve (Advanced) Sub-menu
This 5-point curve is utilized to best match the blade
collective pitch to the engine RPM for consistent load
on the the engine. Curves are separately adjustable
for normal, idle-up 1, and idle-up 2.
Revo Mix (Advanced) Sub-menu
This 5-point curve is utilized to best match the
blade collective pitch to the engine RPM for
consistent load on the the engine. Curves are
separately adjustable for normal, idle-up 1, and
idle-up 2. In addition, a separate collective
pitch curve is available for throttle hold.
Gyro Sub-menu
This linear curve mix adds opposite rudder input to
counteract the changes in torque when the speed and
collective pitch of the blades is changed.
Gyro: simplifies adjusting/selecting the gyro sensitivity,
and can provide more than 2 gyro gain settings. (The
higher the gain, the more correction the gyro provides
and the "softer" or less responsive the helicopter
feels.) This function makes the best possible use of
the inflight adjustable gain of most gyros.
Hover Throttle Sub-menu
Hover Pitch Sub-menu
Hovering Adjustments - Hover Throttle: Hovering
throttle is a fine-tuning adjustments for the throttle,
affecting performance only around the center point.
They allow in-flight tweaking of the curves for ideal
setup.
Throttle Hold Sub-menu
Hovering Adjustments - Hover Pitch: Hovering pitch is
a fine-tuning adjustments for the collective pitch
curves individually, affecting performance only
around the center point. They allow in-flight tweaking
of the curves for ideal setup.
Offset Sub-menu
Throttle Hold: This function holds the engine in the idling
position and disengages it from the THROTTLE STICK when
SWITCH E is moved. It is commonly used to practice
auto-rotation.
Governor Sub-menu
Offset: Optional separate trims in addition to those for the
normal condition. This function is used to automatically
change the trim of a helicopter, for example, when
transitioned from hover to flying at high speed.
Swashplate to Throttle Sub-Menu
Governor: The Governor mixing function is use to
adjust the GV-1 (Governor) speed settings from the
transmitter.
Swashplate to Throttle: The swashplate to throttle
mixing corrects slow of the engine speed caused by
swashplate operation at aileron or elevator operation.
Engine speed can be increased independently at
aileron or elevator operation in each flight condition.
P-Mixes Sub-menu
The 7C contains three separate linear programmable
mixes.
There are a variety of reasons you might want to use
these mixes. A few are listed here.
Flying the plane turned out to be an adventure. Looking at the forecast I found that we were staring down the barrel of a
huge oncoming ice storm, so I tried to sneak out before it hit and fly the plane. It was a less than perfect day to fly
because it was dark, overcast, misty rain, and a temperature hovering around 45 degrees. Normally I wouldn't fly in
conditions like this, but I needed to get this review turned in. After a good range check I got the plane in the air as
quickly as I could. I didn't get too fancy on my flying because of the conditions and I didn't want to get into trouble. I did
fly the plane out as far as I could see to check the range and had no problems with it. The control and feel of the plane
was very good and I was quite pleased with the way the radio felt as I was flying. After about 10 minutes I couldn't take
the conditions any longer so I brought the plane in, loaded up, went home, and warmed up with a cup of hot chocolate!
After the "real" flight of the plane I decided I needed to get some more stick time to get a better feel for the radio so I
connected it up to RealFlight 3.5 and spent the evening flying different planes with it. This gave me the chance to get a
good feel for all of the switches and controls of the radio. The more that I used the radio the more I liked the feel for it in
my hands. Everything felt like it was exactly where it should have been. I was able to find all of the switches and controls
without fumbling or looking down at the radio. I was quickly becoming a big fan of this radio.
I only have a few items that I felt could have been done better. The first would be the LCD display. The display I thought
the display could have been bigger. While the screen was clear and easy to understand I felt that it seemed a bit
crowded and could have been a bit bigger. But by no means did it take away from the great functionality of the 7C's
programming. The second item would be the transmitter battery. I felt that it was a bit small in today's age of computer
radios that control multiple planes. The last item would be setting up dual elevator servos. When setting up dual
elevator servos there is no way to individually trim each servo with the radio itself. A mechanical adjustment must be
used to trim an individual servo in a dual elevator setup. This isn't a huge deal because each servo can still be adjusted manually.
The transmitter battery is one other area that I felt was a bit weak. With the technology of today's radios I wish that
batteries with larger capacities would be provided. As computer radios have ever-increasing capacity to control more
planes it's becoming more common to see someone show up at the flying field with several planes to fly, all being
controlled by one radio. Smaller capacity batteries may not have the capacity to provide a full flying day for multiple
planes. I would like to have seen a bigger battery provided with the radio.
Installing the radio into my plane was a very simple matter. I really liked the Dual antenna wires for the Spread Spectrum
as I felt they were easier to install than other 2.4 Ghz radio systems that I have seen. Placing the 2 wires in the fuselage
was very easy to do and posed no problems at all. Once installed and in the air I really liked the feel of the radio. The
radio felt good in my hands and all the controls were easily accessible for my fingers. The resolution of the control sticks
was good and I liked the response of the plane to my control inputs. I've had many radios in my Kaos, but I think that I
have found the radio that is going to stay in it! The 7C has found a new home!
Anybody that has programmed a Futaba radio will have no problems with the T7C. The programming is unchanged
from earlier 7C radios. I found the manual easy to understand and it did a good job of explaining the different functions
of the radio. Many of the most popular mixes are predefined in the programming of the radio, but there are enough user
defined mixes to allow the user to customize his setup. As with most advanced Futaba radios all of the switches on the
radio can be changed and defined by the end-user, so the radio can be customized by the pilot for what fits best.
Futaba has another winner with their T7C 2.4 Ghz radio system. They have combined their popular 7C radio system
with the proven benefits of 2.4 Ghz Spread Spectrum technology to produce a radio system that will appeal to a wide
variety of pilots. Many pilots these days want the advanced mixing and programming capabilities but don't want to pay
for a 9 or 12 channel radio and they will find that the T7C is the perfect fit for them. The added security that Spread
Spectrum gives the pilot while flying makes this radio an all around winner.
Futaba T7CA 2.4Ghz 7-Channel Radio System
Futaba
Distributed Exclusively in the U.S.A., Canada and Mexico by:
Great Planes Model Distributors
P.O. Box 9021
Champaign, IL 61826-9021
http://2.4gigahertz.com
www.greatplanes.com
Comments on RCU Review: Futaba T7CA 2.4Ghz 7-Channel Radio System
Posted by: Red Baron Dave on 01/07/2008
Profile I wonder when the 9C will also be 2.4Ghz, as the 6 and now the 7 have made the conversion. I agree the standard
screen is much tooo small!
Posted by: hlhamner on 01/31/2008
Profile Posted by: AJsToyz on 02/12/2008
Profile I am really happy with my 72mhz 7C but my 2.4 version is in the mail. I have no complaints at all about this system!
Posted by: uduman on 02/18/2008
Profile You said "When setting up dual elevator servos there is no way to individually trim each servo with the radio itself." Are
you sure? I witnessed a club member use the AILEVATOR mix with AIL3 & AIL4 rates set to 0. The two elev servos
worked opposite to each other and the trim worked on both servos.
Posted by: RCKen on 02/18/2008
Profile Yes, you can trim BOTH of the elevator servos with the trim tab for the elevator channel. But what I was referring to is
that there is no way to trim each individual servo once they are bound together in to the Ailevator mix. If adjustments
need to be made to an individual servo then they must be done mechanically, as there is no way to do it within the
radio. Ken
Posted by: uduman on 02/19/2008
Profile Ahh, right, sorry. I read that as only one servo would respond to the trim adjustment. I see what you are saying.
Posted by: rcmaster12 on 03/05/2008
Have you tried to switch the throttle stick to the heli style? Does the manual explanin this well?
Profile Posted by: perfectplanes on 04/21/2008
Profile I understand you can set up the transmitter for different modes. I fly mode 4 and was wondering how difficult it is to
set that up.
Posted by: uduman on 04/30/2008
Profile I just received mine yesterday and need to setup dual elevator servos. I assume channel 2 is for the right elevator half
but what channel does the left half go into in order to use the AILVATOR function? Thanks Uduman
Posted by: harphunt on 05/02/2008
It is my understanding that the other elevator goes into ch 5. PEACE
Profile Page: 1 2 > The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply
generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in
products like the one featured in the review. EMAIL THIS ARTICLE OR CHECK OUT THESE OTHER GREAT REVIEWS!
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