Here another interesting micro racer that i found locally, extremely cheap and made from plastic...for seasonal FPV quad racer the words "plastic" sounds like a major turn off doesn't it? Aaaaaa!!! Plastics!? We all get used to the trends having carbon fiber parts, top notch racing spec flight controller, popular FPV camera and vtx and everything much what pros mostly used to keep up with the latest fad in FPV racing world but Q100 isn't what people have much in mind unless something high tech and fancy like the carbon decorated QX95. Throughout my entire life as an R/C enthusiast i learned that "never judge something from its book cover"....this is true for KING KONG Q100. On 1st January 2017 i went to my friend local FPV drone shop wanted to buy some parts for my project and caught my eye on 2x small plain corrugated like boxes labeled KING KONG Q100. From what i see there's not much people buying these despite being plastic and cheap, for something below USD$47 with everything included to complete the drone racing assembly and also comes with spare battery and dozen of propellers i decided to purchase the whole boxes since its cheap enough not to make hole in my pocket...plus its just me being curious enough to tinker around during spare time at home. My expectation was to build it as a basher, its also my first 100mm size rotor to rotor micro racer since most of my collection is below or upper than 100mm size. At the time of purchase Q100 wasn't that much popular unlike its other competitors the EACHINE, JJPRO micro racer or Blade Inductrix (Tiny Whoop)..no one want to buy a plastic and unproven review but the table going to turn around soon.
Specification (as describe by vendor/manufacturer)
Brand: KING KONG
Model: Q100 micro FPV racing drone
Frame size: 100mm rotor to rotor.
Chassis build/base: Durable high impact plastic (85*85*25mm)
Model weight without battery: 41g (without battery and receiver)
Flight controller: Micro Brushed Flight Control Board Base NAZE32 6DOF (Cleanflight 1.13.0 ALIENFLIGHTF1 firmware)
Onboard receiver module: AC800 D8 receiver (Frsky) - Self supplied
Motors: 4x 8520 Coreless brushed motor
Prop size: 65mm
Run time: 5~6 minutes
Charging time: avg. 80 minutes via USB, avg | 75 minutes on computerized charger at 0.5A safe charge rate using TURNIGY ACCUCELL 6/IBMAX B6
Control distance: 100m ~ 500m on TURNIGY 9X (FRSKY DJT module + AC800 D8 mode receiver)
Battery details: 3.7V 550~600mah (1s li-po)
FPV video camera/transmitter unit: 600TVL CMOS 1/4 inch camera + 5.8Ghz 25mw 15 channel video transmitter module with Omni antenna
Package included (kit - assembly required):
1x Q100 frame
1x Naze32 flight controller
1x 3.7v 550mah 1s li-po battery pack
20x spare 65mm propellers
4x Coreless brush motors
1x FPV unit = 600TVL CMOS camera + 5.8Ghz 25mw 15 channel video transmitter module
1x Futaba or DSM2 else not included (Customer choice during purchase)
Most strongest and durable micro FPV racing quad in the market (at the time of writing). Great for bashing, training and tolerate extreme crashes.
Very fast flyer, cheap and comes with everything to get started into FPV racing! Out of box, bind it and fly! Comes with lots of spare propellers too.
Physically they look very good looking and well streamlined body designed for racing.
Very good FPV video transmission around park range distance despite having only 25mw power and on Omni antenna.
The supplied 65mm propeller are extremely durable and never had issues with flying/pop off form the motor shaft. It locked into the shaft snap-in locked nicely.
Build, flight performance and review.
The Q100 package isn't as fancy or techie as what you get on EACHINE and JJPRO, just simple art-less box, a bag of parts and other necessity needed to assemble it into FPV racing drone then "bind and fly" it. You'll required to assembled into complete micro FPV racer by hand, yes of course wire soldering are required and that's it. Other than soldering, the good news is much of the assembly is "boltless/screwless" which can be install by hand where the parts such as motors, flight controller, camera, video transmitter and other are snapped in nicely into the plastic frame without glue aided with some sticky double tape for some parts. The supplied flight controller need not much on PID setting but only required to assign proper receiver module stick assignment and flight mode (AUX1/AUX2) in CLEANFLIGHT software. There are lots of video on Q100 how to assembly/setup on Youtube channel if you're lost or required visual reference, the best YouTube setup i see is this one from Hobbymate aka KK Q100 video (Click here). Another advantages of Q100 plastic frame other being ultra durable is that its long rectangular layout design able to accommodate longer flight controller board or additional components such as micro minimOSD, special receiver size or longer size battery,
Even if you've completed your Q100 build there are few important tips and notes on how to make your Q100 runs more efficient and safe as FPV racer with few simple mods as listed below.
VTX antenna: Always keep the FPV video transmitter Omni antenna upright rather than lay down horizontally with the chassis because the antenna might caught up with the propeller spinning path and may get sliced/cut by the blade causing it to loose video frequency.
VTX antenna: Since its Omni type antenna the video radio RF dispersion need to be well cleared of from obstacles in its horizontal axis around its cylindrical cooper antenna body, so it needs to stand upright away from the chassis and also nearby electronics else the video frequency might get deflected (bounced) by nearby object and else you'll received too much interference in your video screen or inside your FPV video goggle. To keep the antenna upright best to make a small groove/notch (holder/clamp) on the most upper edge of the body cover/lid so that the antenna trunk can be seated upright exactly away from all 4 rotor/propeller rotation and secure it using a small dab of hot glue or any type of glue that can be easily remove by finger if the antenna need to be removed next time. Do not use acidic based glue or epoxy which causes permanent attachment.
Lid/cover: The Q100 comes with two main plastic parts; the main chassis (Black) and the top cover/lid (colored: Red/Yellow/White..). Its wise that after setting up everything on Q100 make sure to secure the cover/lid to the chassis using long and thin zip ties over the lid/cover and around the chassis because its more likely to pop off from the chassis after a crash if not tightly secure causing some electronics under the lid such as FPV camera/vtx and flight controller board to spill out from its chassis. Once its fully secured using zip tie you'll100% guarantee to have extremely durable Q100 that can withstands crashes and bashes.
Rubber base: Q100 kit comes with 4x little rubber landing base which to be attached below the motor mounting hole. Its purpose to make the landing more comfy, not to scratch the lower part of the chassis and not to scratch anything on the ground especially when you try landing on top of your car roof. In my opinion its best not install it but as optional if you really think you need it. But in my setup i don't need it at all as it give too much trouble and added extra weight which deter overall performance of Q100. You'll likely to loose it after few landing and even lost a few after crashes, you'll spent to much time looking around for missing rubber parts than flying around. Actually its doesn't do much but making your Q100 bounced more on any landing surface due to rubbery rebound. Loose it before you'll lose your mind.
Flying the Q100 handles much the same like any coreless brushed motor type FPV quad racer category, slightly stiff in control due to stock factory firmware setting when trying to stick control the movement during the flight. The performance differences between Q100 and my previously reviewed micro FPV racer is that Q100 give out more fast and powerful lifting torque especially outdoor but lack of braking power unlike SP RACING controller. It's definitely a fast flyer and wanted fly higher up as i struggle to lower the quad to lower altitude by lowering the throttle. Way to much speed for a small size racer not sure why but probably its bigger size 65mm propellers helps boosted the power. As for me i like it very much and definitely its a great racer to be racing in big open field rather around the park with tight narrow trees. Stock factory PID on the flight controller wobble a lot in very windy area so best to reduce the "P" value for roll and pitch to -2 value (from 40 to 38) and increase the yaw rate for better turning control. The flight time remains standard like any other quad racer with total runtime between 5~6 minutes. The coreless motor quite hot after 5~6 minutes flight and needed few minutes to cool down before continue with another session of flight with new cycle of battery, which is why i have another twin Q100 to keep me going and let the hot ones to cool down.
The most distinct feature about Q100 is that more likely to survive high speed crashes into trees and concrete. After a month flying rigorously the Q100 since its a fast racer i always have incident crashing hard head-on into trees, concrete wall, building pillars, steel lamp post and other unavoidable obstacles every session of the flight, after hard crash none of the parts were broke even the electronics still running well without issues. After crashes its either stay up right and fly again or missing propellers but there nothing that causes me to pack my bag and go home...the Q100 keep on going until the pilot itself retired from the session before the battery cycle ends (brought 8x pack of lipos). The KING KONG Q100 is pretty much like the TRAXXAS R/C car in drone racing world, strong and durable. If you've own brand like TRAXXAS R/C truck you'll know what i meant. The stock 5.8ghz 25mw video transmitter that comes with Omni type antenna seems to perform extremely well behind trees and obstacles around the despite not being equipped with clover leaf antenna or the latest 4 lobes antenna as seen much with EACHINE type vtx and works well with my old classic 8ch BOSCAM GS920 FPV video goggle. The stock lightweight Omni antenna serve its purpose very well as a basher and crash resistant antenna so there no need to upgrade the antenna at all to get more performance flying around narrow park. Most of my Q100 FPV action recorded on EACHINE PRO DVR mini recorder as shown published on my Youtube channel.
Caution: If you're getting your first Q100 or first timer into micro FPV racing that uses coreless brushed motor like this one its wise not to pull throttle at any rate if the quad fall off on the ground upside down or where the propellers caught stuck among the shrubs of grasses or tangled in the branches because coreless motor is sensitive to overheating and get burned if the pilot were to keep on the throttle when the rotor still stuck. The following are symptoms that your coreless brushed motor is giving up its efficiency or should i say having a bad motor that needed immediate replacement.
One of the motor get overheated faster than other motor after 1 minutes of simple flight/hovering.
Barely able to fly/lift off from the ground even after using a fresh fully charged battery. One or two motor may have been worn-out, overheating or being bad as discussion in note (1) above causing the other remaining healthy motor to compensate the failing lift. Immediately replace the bad coreless brushed motors.
One of the motor unable to spin even after replacing a new spare motor. More likely its the onboard FET chip that control the 'brushed' motor speed controller have been damaged/burned, the whole flight controller board need to be replaced if replacing the FET chip is not possible.
For the Q100 i have to admit not only it has all the best worry free characteristic, fast, powerful and being a basher its also a great looking micro racer in the market; very aerodynamic looking chassis and body shell, flashy, great contrast in color and great size to be noticeable by public as it fly around the park. It looks like more of a Ferrari or Lamborghini version of drone racing rather than branchy yet fuzzy looking flying carbon fiber design zoom passes you like an ugly bug.
Here are sample of video of i posted on my Youtube channel contain test review on King Kong Q100 micro FPV racing drone.
Here are list of reputable vendor/seller which i bought from and also verified by community forum discussion groups. Also i've experienced buying from these places that have good support and services:
Seller Banggood.com: Kingkong Q100 100mm Micro FPV Racing Quadcopter Base On NZ32 Flight Controller DSM2/Futaba Receiver
Places where you can find help and resources related to this product:
Topic: Hobbymate (aka King Kong) Q100 Micro - Help/Discussion
Clean flight software for tuning Q100: http://cleanflight.com
Its been more than 3 weeks i've been actively flying my Q100 almost daily, i always bring a pair (2x) Q100 so i could swap fast easily after every session of flight so i could enjoy uninterrupted fun flying around the park, behind the office or anywhere i go. As you all know by now i own a lot of micro FPV racing drone including the best grade racer but the Q100 steal my heart as the best choice for my daily bashing. Its a risk free, low maintenance and crash resistant micro racer without having my mind clouded how much money to spent on the pre crash parts or hobby bills in my pocket. This little racer keeps on going and going until the pilot decided to take five for the day. Q100 is quite addictive for those really into micro FPV racing and if you do getting one of this best if you buy both (2x) in pair so that you'll have more airtime in the park and not overheating the quad after each cycle of restless flight.
Is it for beginners? If you've flown a quad copter before and able to fly basic flight maneuver then it is a 'YES' the Q100 is a great model for beginners to start micro FPV racing ambition as its more durable to crash and tolerant to pilot flight error as they progressing to learn how to race around the obstacles, just remember to buy at least 2x Q100 as mentioned before to keep you entertained and uninterrupted time to practice at the field. You don't have to worry much about the cost since they are dirt cheap little racer to start with. Just make sure to get proper micro/nano size receiver matching your existing radio protocol.
If i wanted to rate the Q100 i would give 10/10 for daily fun basher. For competitive racing i would give 8/10 for its stock flight controller but you can always easily upgrade to SP RACING F3 EVO easily to turn this into race worthy competitors, then it'll score 10/10 rate in my book for being great value for money racer and also based on fun factor.