22 July 2015

REVIEW: Flying Gadgets X-Voice Quadcopter

Say what?

Following hot on the heels of a quadcopter which also had an X in its name that was pretty remarkable, today we're reviewing another flying gadget with its own unique brand of awesomeness. If you've ever wished that you could just tell your RC helicopter to fly and do tricks, you're in luck. We warmed up our thumbs (and our vocal chords) to test the Flying Gadgets X-Voice Quadcopter.

In a nutshell, this is a microcopter-sized remote control helicopter, similar to others that we have recently reviewed. Included is a controller, a removable battery, and a USB charging wire to juice up said battery, and on a full charge you'll get between five and seven minutes of flight out of the thing. So pretty average and nothing too remarkable. Yet.

Because also included in that box from Flying Gadgets is a small ear-piece and microphone that clips over your ear and allows you to TALK TO YOUR CHOPPER! Yes, this helicopter can take, and understand, voice commands. You plug in the microphone to the controller, read the instructions which detail what the chopper will understand, and you're away with one clear mention of "Take off". Other commands include; go down, go up etc, rotate left, rotate right, flip backwards, flip forwards, and also initiate a 'show', which is a preset series of movements like spinning and spiralling.

We can't tell you how weird this is. We're seasoned pros now when it comes to small quadcopters, but being able to speak commands to it to make it fly made us feel like nervous newbies. When you first utter that take off command, a voice repeats it in your ear (or says that the command is not understood), and immediately the chopper whooshes into life. Fortunately the controller features all the standard controls allowing you override the spoken command whenever you need to - something we found very handy.

The Flying Gadgets X-Voice Quadcopter itself is plastic-fantastic. Even the supporting struts that hold the four motors are plastic, making the thing very light and flexible. Because of this we found it could easily be swayed by a light breeze, but also that it responded to touch-controls quickly and smoothly. In fact, when not messing around with the voice commands and headset, this is excellent little chopper; nimble, stable, and with a comfortable and logical controller.

And its only £50. That should be a big deal, because if this was being sold by a certain German supplier of microcopters (who, say, would 'revel' in earning your custom - tee hee) you might expect to pay a lot more than that. Yes, the quad itself is plastic and cheap, but the voice-control system is actually pretty sophisticated and performs strikingly well.

We'll be honest though, after a few goes with the voice system we put the microphone back in the box and haven't used it since. The true beauty of this is flying it normally, just like the microcopter it is, without gimmicks. Even without the fancy voice thing, it is still worth the £50 you'll pay, and the caged rotors make it ideal for safely perfecting your flying skills. This is a novelty that you'll actually want to keep for good long while.


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