Okay, at the onset, I'd like to clear something up. This quadcopter is a great little quad. But, not for beginners. I will go into this much deeper, as an experienced flyer of both quadcopters and drones, I feel like I should offer some tips on flying this quad, as it is completely manual, with NONE of the control features you would expect of a true drone. (Which is perfectly okay. This quad is a TOY. A very good one, lots of fun, but still a toy. You should not expect it to do the kind of things a $2,000 drone does.) This quad is great for someone wanting to get their grit, on flying a 'by the stick' quadcopter. It's small, durable, inexpensive, comes with spare props, extra batteries and a simple instruction manual. The camera, legs and prop guards are easy to install. First thing that I noticed about the quadcopter is that this little guy is exactly like a pint sized Syma X8C, with the vertical hold, it operates just like a Syma X8HG. It came with three batteries. So, even though the batteries are only 3.7V, you still get pretty close to thirty minutes actual air time. Including time to change batteries and relaunch, you could have about an hour of fun time. Then, seeing that these batteries are fairly common, you can get spares and a multi-charger pretty cheap. This would make your flying time just as long as you want. Now, the quad's camera does NOT have a place for a memory card, so the only record of the flight will be on your phone, using the app. The app is quite good, offering a lot of features. I only used the video portion, using the transmitter for all directional controls. Now come the REAL flying instructions. Now, about flying this quadcopter. It is NOT for the beginner. An unexperienced flyer will lose it or crash it, guaranteed. First, before you put this bird in the air, I STRONGLY recommend that you print your phone number on some paper (in small but legible font) cut it out, put it face down on some tape (your making a label) and tape it to your quad. This quad is light enough that it does NOT need FAA registration. But, if you ever lose it, maybe someone will find it and call you. I've lost some quads before, and was able to get them back (sometimes) this way. If you are NOT familiar with quadcopters or flying them, INSTALL THE PROP GUARDS! You will need them to protect your quadcopter's propellers, motors and even the quad itself from damage. You will be hitting walls, the ground, trees, cars, people, and so on. HOT TIP!: Learn how to power on and power off the propellers BEFORE attempting to fly it. And, repeat turning it on and off several times before taking off. If the quad starts to get away, you will want to know how to shut the motors off and just let it fall to the ground. It's either that or just watch it sail away with the wind. Next, practice forcing the quad to the ground (preferably out in the yard where there's soft grass to land in). This is important because if you find your quad rocketing towards a dangerous encounter, you want it to go to ground instead. But, before you start flying, you have to do two very important things. 1) Set your trims. This can only be done in an area big enough to allow the quad to hover freely, like in an empty garage. Hovering at a fixed height is no problem for this quad, because of the very sensitive barometric pressure sensor. Whatever height you bring it to, it will remain there. However, all of the other movements are manually controlled and NOT managed by electronics. So, there are buttons on the controller that allow you to adjust the trims of the vertical, forward/backward, side to side and rotation of the quadcopter, while it is supposed to be motionless. In the garage (or other appropriate place with NO air movement) bring the aircraft to a hover, about three feet off the floor. If you see the craft drifting in any direction (in it's six axis controls) use the trim buttons to correct it, until it remains perfectly still. This is VERY important. Because, the ability to properly control the aircraft in flight, depends on how well it hovers on it's own. Next, after you have the quad well trimmed, you really need to learn how to keep it in a stationary hover, with your hands on the sticks at all times. Start out in the garage, with no air movement and keep your aircraft within an imaginary box of about 6 ft square. After you have mastered this, you can take it outside on a calm day and do the same exercise. Even on a calm day, there will be some air movement, so it will be a little more challenging. This exercise is important. It gives you more automatic and comfortable responses to manage the direction and heading of the aircraft. Finally, now that you've become very familiar with the quad and it's controller, you've practiced hovering and adjusted the trims, it's time to start flying. If you don't have any experience flying a quadcopter that does NOT have GPS stabilization, you need to practice first, in a wide open area, away from buildings or trees. Keep the quad low, no more than 10 or 15 feet above the ground. When flying, out in the open keep the quad close to you, no more than 40 or 50 feet away. An open field with soft grass for landing (crashing) in is best. And, whatever you do, DO NOT let it get more than 15 feet up or 50 feet away. The higher it goes, and the further away, the harder it's going to be to correct any piloting errors and prevent a fly away. The altitude hold helps. But, without GPS stabilization, the quad can drift away before you know it. And, ALWAYS keep the drone facing away from you or in the direction of travel. This orientation is extremely important. If it's facing you, then left becomes right and away from you becomes toward you. It can be VERY confusing. The other controls, like auto take off and auto landing, headless mode, flips etc. should only be performed AFTER you have mastered the primary flying functions. This will help in navigation, as the quad will remain (somewhat) stationary when you want it to just hover. But, remember without GPS, it has NO HORIZONTAL PLANE STABILIZATION and will drift away if you let it. That's even on a windless day. Headless mode may help, if you have it set up correctly and it is functioning normally. Headless mode will always orient forward or backward to either away from you or towards you, no matter which way the nose is pointing. But, do NOT get to comfortable with this. The quadcopter does NOT know where you are or where the controller is. So, this function cannot be relied on too heavily. After flying for just a little while, headless mode may not function properly. Where to fly.... Well, obviously, in the house is not a good idea. Nor is in an alley, a small back yard, in the middle of the city, etc. You need a wide open area. Preferably, at least the size of a double tennis court or half a football field. Indoors, something the size of a basketball court is good. Outdoors, remember that this quad has a limited control range and even more limited video transmission range. It's also kind of a small craft and can be kind of hard to see at distances. So, in the open is great. But, DON'T let it get too far away. You should ALWAYS be able to see it clearly enough to know which way it's going. If this craft is anything like the Syma, it's control range is further than you can see it. But, don't test that theory. I have a collection of aircraft like this, that I have enjoyed flying for years. The one thing that I miss in this one is the onboard memory (micro-USB card) for a record of the flight that you don't have to watch the monitor for. However, the record function in the app will give you pretty good 720p video and good pics, right on your phone. The fun thing about this quad is that it's not really an aerial photography platform OR a racing quad. It's a toy, designed to be played with. It's not the fastest. But, it will still do some pretty cool maneuvers like pirouettes, corkscrews, banking turns, strafing runs, altitude peaks, etc. and you can catch it all on video. Plus, if you crash, you're probably not going to break anything, as long as you do all of this in the right venue. Note: After you have become comfortable with this craft, remove the propeller guards. They add weight, using more power and draining the battery. They also reduce the maneuverability of the craft, making flying more difficult and crashing more likely. The guards are important to the inexperienced flyer. But, for those that can fly without fear of crashing, they are unnecessary and a burden. This review has been more of a tutorial on how to fly a basic quadcopter than anything else. But, you will appreciate it with this aircraft. Finally, I can tell you that this quadcopter is as good as they get. As I said, it's a 'Mini'Me' of the Syma X8C quad that has the altitude hold of the X8HG. It's durable, flies well, has good FPV and app, and is just plain fun. Pay close attention to how far it is from you and DON'T let it get more than maybe 300 feet away. Just remember that one thing, and you will enjoy this quad very much. There are a lot of versions of this quad out there. But, I know that the Benyi performs well, and is very much worth the investment. Good purchase. Five stars.
Reviewed in the United States on November 29, 2020 by Mikel Berry