Archive for category: Radio Control

An Early Holiday Gift for Last Minute Shoppers: Our Favorite Things of 2013

favorite-thingsWe received such a great response to this when we posted it last week, we decided to post it again as we head to the final stretch of holiday shopping. Need some last minute gift ideas? Take a listen to YourTechReport Radio’s Favorite Things episode–and hopefully find that special gift for that special someone before all of the stores close.

…and Happy Holidays!

The first category is Toys, Games and Computers–and in this category we talk all about the XBOX One, NVIDIA Shield, Swann Bubblebomber, the Wii U and Traxxas QR-1. On the computer side of things we touch upon the Alienware x51, MacBook Pro lineup and Mac Mini to name a few. Take a listen.

Of course we can’t omit Tablets and Mobile Phones–and we have plenty to share, including the Lenovo Yoga tablet, iPad Mini with Retina Display, iPad Air, Samsung Galaxy Note, HTC One and One Mini, the iPhone 5C and 5S, and more. Take a listen.

Finally in our Accessories and Gadgets category, we can’t let Mitchell escape without talking about Booq bags, chargers from Jackery, WeMo Home Automation solutions from Belkin, Bowers & Wilkins P7 Headphones, and Sennheiser Momentum headphones. Take a listen.

We hope you enjoying hearing about our favorite tech, and we’ll continue to bring you new reviews every Saturday at 1pm Eastern, on YourTechReport Radio, SiriusXM channel 167.

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(Video) Sphero 2.0 Review – Apps, Driving, and Swimming with Orbotix Spherical Robot

orbotix sphero 2.0 robot toy review hands on yourtechreportI like robots. I like robots a lot. Reading Asimov as a little kid, I thought being a robopsychologist was a real job. It wasn’t, but Orbotix might just have the next best thing. Rolling out their updated Sphero 2.0 robot, I was really excited to get my hands on one. Let’s open it up and take Sphero for a spin!

I only managed to get two “ball” puns into this description. I hope to see more puns in the comments on this video!

For more info on Sphero: http://www.gosphero.com/

orbotix sphero 2.0 robot toy review hands on ramps accessories yourtechreport

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Review: Swann’s iFly Micro Lightning RC Helicopter

I suck at RC.

I had a little race car when I was a kid. Just trying to get it to run around an oval track was a frustrating experience–especially when friends of mine were going to track events on a regular basis.

Lately I’ve been getting my hands on some incredible RC flying toys. From $20-ish mall kiosk jobs, to the Force RC fighting copters, to the gorgeous AR Drone.

Swann dropped the iFly Micro Lighting in my hands, and after some of these premier devices I was a touch skeptical. Thankfully, the iFML has a few tricks up its rotors…

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Versatility Without Compromise: The Ken Block Gymkhana Fiesta from Traxxas

In the world of motor sports, the skills necessary for gymkhana are almost contradictory: Cars need to have precision handling for the technical demands of the timed course, while at the same time be loose enough to drift and spin when required. When Traxxas was tasked with creating a licensed version of the Ken Block Gymkhana Fiesta, they had to craft a vehicle that was versatile enough to handle all of the demands of a gymkhana road course; unfortunately, when we think of something being “versatile,” we usually think “Jack of all trades, master of none.”

This is NOT the case with the Traxxas.

Read on, and find out how this 1/16 scale beast will satisfy both the road racer AND the drifter in the family…without making any compromises.

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Swann’s Air Attack RC Helicopter: Our Review

I think our own Editor-in-Chief, Mitchell Whitfield, put it best when saying that there is nothing wrong with “embracing your inner man-child.” So when I was asked to review the Air Attack RC Helicopter from Swann, my inner man child and I both jumped for joy. After all, there’s nothing like getting a new toy when it isn’t Christmas or your birthday–but this toy was special to me, since Ive loved anything and everything RC ever since I was little. Cars, boats, airplanes, the whole sha-bang. But most recently, because most of them are so affordable and easy to fly, helicopters have been at the top of my list–and the Air Attack from Swann has definitely been one of my favorite copters to fly.

Alright, lets fly into the hardware, shall we? Ah, word play. Anyway, if you read Mitchell’s review of the Micro Hornet, you know that Swann has quite a large fleet of RC copters available–and the Air Attack is definitely the flagship flyer of its arsenal. With a length of fifteen inches, it’s quite sizable for an indoor RC copter. Since it is so big, and it is an indoor heli, you’re going to have to either be a professional flyer or, and this is my choice, find a room with a high ceiling; wind and an outdoor environment are the enemy when flying this chopper, since it is already a bit touchy. But we’ll talk about that later.

The design of this 15 inch helicopter is breathtaking. Let’s put it this way: if you were four inches tall and saw this bad boy flying at you, you wouldn’t think twice that this thing had REAL heat seeking missiles and machine guns attached to it, along with sweet, super bright LED lights and some awesome military and shark decals. If you were thinking of getting a helicopter for it’s looks, then look no further. But that’s not what you’re looking for. You want an RC copter that can fly…

And the Air Attack doesn’t disappoint…for the most part. It runs off of a 4 channel RF radio, has dual rotors plus a tail rotor, and has a gyro for flight stabilization–which makes it much easier for beginner flyers. The remote has a free movement joystick, meaning you can get the copter to a certain elevation and let go of the remote, and it will still stay in place; a small touch, but really helpful when flying. But, while the gyro did help a lot for stabilization, I sometimes felt that either the remote or the copter was unresponsive when I was trying to do certain maneuvers. I also tried to fly the copter outside (though it isn’t recommended) and had a lot of trouble; I wouldn’t even have attempted this if it weren’t for the size of this copter. I tried it indoors, but it was a bit difficult because either my roof was too low or I had too many obstacles around the house. So, I figured I would fly it with a bit more open space–and even the slightest breeze when flying outside would throw this copter off course. Which just shows that you should always follow the instructions; and it also shows that you should think about how much space you have in your house to fly before purchasing a large helicopter such as the Air Attack.

So, the real question is, is it worth your hard earned cash? And, for just under ninety dollars, yes, for the majority of people who want to buy an RC heli. Many people who are willing to make a ninety dollar investment (which is quite reasonable for a copter this size) either have flown or owned another heli in the past. These people would have no problem flying this bad boy. But for the people who are just starting out, I would recommend a smaller, more indoor-friendly copter, like the Micro Hornet; with it’s 40 dollar price and diminutive size, it’s an excellent first heli. But for the more experienced flyers, I would definitely recommend you go pick up a Swann Air Attack RC helicopter; just make sure you have the space to do this helicopter justice.

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For Under $40, Swann’s Micro Hornet Has it All

I learned years ago that there’s nothing wrong with embracing your inner man-child; because of this, my love of toys, video games and RC has never dissipated. One particular segment that’s captured my heart in the last year is RC helicopters. Unlike radio control planes, helicopters can be flown indoors and are pretty easy to fly–and the prices are much more reasonable. So after getting a bunch of emails from you, our loyal readers, we realized that you were getting a bit confused and overwhelmed by the number of helicopters you’ve found at your local malls and hobby shops, and needed a little push in the right direction to help you find a great little heli for less than $50. Well guess what? Help has arrived–and our recommendation may surprise you…

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The Traxxas 1/16 Summit VXL: Scaled Down Design, Full Size Thrills

I just got back from my photo shoot with the Traxxas 1/16 Summit VXL, as well as a quick test run…and I wish you could see the smile on my face; because more than any specs, photos, or information I could give you, this smile will tell you everything you need to know about this fantastic RC truck.

After we posted our article on the Traxxas Slash back in December of last year, we received some great emails asking us for more RC car coverage; and us much as you all seemed to love the Slash (as do we), many of you were interested in finding a slightly smaller vehicle to add to your collection, that would still be a blast to drive. Thanks to our great relationship with Traxxas, we’re able to deliver just that. When our friend John Collins (marketing product manager for Traxxas) told us that he had “…something I was going to love,” he wasn’t kidding; but don’t just take my word for it–read on, and see why the 1/16 Summit VXL is the monster truck your whole family will love.

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Skitterbot From Desk Pets:

Need a brain break?  Looking for a new way to scare the cat?  Mesmerize the kids?  Well, the people over at Desk Pets must have been thinking that lots of people were feeling the same way – so they came up with the Skitterbot.  While we’re game (some might say ‘suckers’) for virtually any kind of remote control toys, I have to say we’ve all been impressed by these fast moving little bugs.  Here’s our take on the Skitterbot from Desk Pets.

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The Traxxas Slash 1/10th Scale 4×4: The RC Short-Course Racer You’ll Love Getting Dirty

As you know, we love making our readers happy–and part of making you happy is reading your emails and giving you the type of coverage that you ask for. Thankfully, we’ve received many emails over the past few months requesting coverage of a category that’s very close to my heart: Radio Control vehicles. I started building and running kits over 25 years ago, and I’ve been a fan of RC ever since. I know there are many of you out there that are less familiar with the RC hobby; some folks may think RC vehicles are too complicated, while others may feel that price is a barrier. For those of you that have been on the fence about jumping into this great hobby, I have some good news: It’s far less complicated than you think, and the prices of RC vehicles today are very reasonable. Since this article is the first of many relating to RC, I thought we’d start with one of the most popular vehicles out there: The Traxxas Slash 4×4 Short-Course Racing Truck.

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Parrot’s AR.Drone: Our Full Review

Have you ever had to keep a relationship a secret? Let me tell you…it’s not easy. You’re dying to share this new important part of your life with your friends and family, but are forced to keep quiet about it because of the trouble talking about it could potentially cause. Well I’m tired of living a lie; tired of pretending that I’ve been spending my nights alone, just to make “other people” more comfortable. It’s time that I finally come clean and let the chips fall where they may: For the past 2 weeks, I have been living with an AR.Drone…AND I DON”T CARE WHO KNOWS ABOUT IT!!

Wow…that felt better than I thought it would. In case you’re not familiar with the Drone, (you can start by reading our initial impressions at E3) it’s the world’s first RC quadricopter that you control with your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. Created by Parrot, an industry leader in Bluetooth technology, the AR.Drone is much more than just another RC Copter; it’s a ground-breaking device that redefines the consumer electronics segment. Read on and find out what makes the Drone an early contender for Gadget of the Year.

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