Drones for newbies and amateurs shouldn’t always come at a premium. As such, drone manufacturers try their best to incorporate the most vital of user-friendly features to cater to this teeming market of opportunities.
Among the most competitive brands in this performance bracket is Hubsan, who has been in the business for years now due to their continual production of viable offerings, despite having a lower market share.
For the entry-level side of things, the Hubsan X4 H107L represents the brand with its mix of features, a balanced build, and decent specs.
But does the drone really deliver anything worthwhile at its rock bottom price, or is it a cheap gimmick? Find out with our honest Hubsan X4 H107L review.
|Weight||Unloaded: 120 grams|
|Size||Length: 2.3 in|
Width: 2.3 in
Height: 1 in
|Signal||Range: ~40 meters|
Operational Frequency: 2.4 GHz
|Battery||Flight time: ~8 mins|
Capacity: 240 mAh
Hubsan X4 H107L Features
Since the Hubsan X4 H107L doesn’t come with GPS assistance to ensure its balance and stability in the air, the drone makes use of an impressive 6-axis gyroscopic system. While most cheap drones ship out with the basic 3-axis gyroscope, allowing the pilot to control pitch, yaw, and roll with its sensors, the added functionality offered by a 6-axis gyroscope allows the drone to accurately position itself midair.
Positioning a drone for stable flight can be tricky when done manually, so the 6-axis gyroscope system kicks in to add that countering effect from wind, vibrations, and other external factors that might affect flight performance.
Still, zero GPS functionality does put this very much in the kids toy drone category.
Just like most other toy drones, the Hubsan X4 H107L has a Flip function available. While we get it that newbies want to show off their piloting chutzpah by doing aerial acrobatics (though in reality the drone comes pre-programmed with an automatic flip feature), we really don’t see the point of forgoing more vital functions like Return to Home and One Key Takeoff and Landing.
We’ve also got raised eyebrows concerning the anti-flip feature that the Hubsan X4 H107L activates when you enter “Expert Mode”. They say it’s to keep the drone safe while maneuvering at high-speeds, and while it is true that the sensitivity settings are extra loose in this performance mode, isn’t it inherently more sensible to ensure the Flip function keeps the drone safe at any speed.
Either way, we’re not too sold on this implementation — or at least with the fact it’s been implemented over other more important features.
The Hubsan X4 H107L has a 240 mAh battery that provides somewhere from 6 to 8 minutes of flight time. For those who have read some of our mid-range to high-end reviews, 8 minutes tops isn’t the best of flight times, but considering the price range of the drone and the availability of battery packs online (where we positively recommend you to get extra ones), it isn’t too bad, all things considered.
The battery charges back to full at about 40 minutes, which also isn’t the worst out there (we’ve reviewed units that had the same amount of flight juice but took 3 to 4 times longer to charge up). It also comes with a handy USB cord with a built-in adapter to directly charge your battery packs via a power bank, laptop, or any standard 5V USB port.
In the topic of extra battery packs, there is a compatible module that has a higher capacity: the MicroMall 500 mAh battery.
Unfortunately, the Hubsan X4 H107L doesn’t ship with a camera. You wouldn’t be able to do photography or shoots with its measly flight time and range anyways, but the fact there’s also no FPV functionality is also disappointing.
Ease Of Use
The Hubsan X4 H107L comes with a gamer-inspired controller that has slight modifications to fit the control schematics of the drone.
It features the standard dual-joystick layout and is populated by sensitivity adjustment, trimming, and a power button. Furthermore, it has a minimalist LCD screen smack dab in the middle for rudimentary telemetry readouts such as battery level and speed.
Ergonomics isn’t a problem with the Hubsan X4 H107L’s controller, as the optimized console-style design gives it smooth curves and contours that fit the hand naturally, minimizing soreness from extended periods of use.
Design and Build Quality
Taking on a quadcopter design, the Hubsan X4 H107L doesn’t occupy much space (with its size comparable to a smartphone), taking the bite-sized route with its dimensions and weight. The craft is also built from a decent plastic-based material, given its tolerance to crashes and collisions.
While the Hubsan X4 H107L is an able craft in terms of durability, crashing the drone isn’t always infallible. This takes us to another point: Hubsan sells a crash pack that has the basic protective gear for the drone, plus replacement parts in case you damage them.
One of the best inclusions in the crash pack is the protection ring, which is a flexible one-piece ring that guards the propellers and hull of the Hubsan X4 H107L all at once. You also get 2 replacement motors, an extra battery pack, a replacement hull, propellers, and some landing feet as well, making it a worthwhile investment for the absolute newbie.
It came as a bit of a shock to us that the H107L is actually pretty fast.
Despite its brushed motors, the drone takes to the skies effortlessly — well, the indoor skies at least — responding to your controller inputs with great ease and efficiency.
The Hubsan X4 H107L is a great drone to fly indoors, since connectivity and range won’t be an issue, considering the limited space you have to work with.
For open-air flight, though, its lightweight profile might prove to work against it, becoming a victim of stray winds, so ensure that the surroundings are calm and devoid of any wind activity to maximize flight safety.
The Hubsan X4 H107L comes in at an affordable price point, making it an enticing offer for beginners seeking their way into the drone community.
While the Hubsan X4 H107L is no slouch considering its flight performance, stability, and flight time (in relation to its competitors), user-friendliness (or the apparent lack thereof) has us itching to bin the model altogether.
We’re not saying the H107L is a terrible drone. We’re just saying that — despite its low price — we wish it did a little more.
Despite its lack of features, we do still think this could be a potential option for beginners. The reason for this is that its lack of features could actually be beneficial to some people — it is good at the limited number of things that it does. Without the basic features you’d typically expect for beginners, it can help teach you to pilot drones without relying on one-key buttons.
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