Like almost every other drone company in the industry, Yuneec has lived in the shadow of DJI for the past few years. The company has over 15 years of experience building RC airplanes, however, and currently offers some of the most advanced multi-rotor drones on the market.
The Q500 Typhoon 4K drone is one of the first 4K drones designed for hobbyist pilots. Sold at less than 800 euros, this Q500 4K is an advanced drone that embeds a multitude of advanced functions designed to simplify aerial video capture.To get a clear idea of the performance of these “smart” functions and the 4K camera, we tested Yuneec’s Typhoon Q500 4K during several test flights. Here are our conclusions.
Yuneec’s Q500 4K made us feel like kids on Christmas morning when we unboxed it, Measuring 40 centimeters long by 20 centimeters high, the Q500 weighs just under 1,800 grams with the battery and payload. Out of the box, the drone comes with two sets of propellers, all necessary plug-ins and adapters, a preloaded 16GB SD card with tutorials, the ST10 + Personal Ground Station controller and an integrated 4K camera.
Easy to use yet sophisticated, the Yuneec Q500 4K allows even amateur photographers to produce professional quality images and videos. The fully controllable 3-axis gimbal camera can shoot straight ahead to capture the horizon, or rotate up to 90 degrees downward to capture aerial images. Although many new drones are starting to add this feature, it is still relatively uncommon, giving the Q500 a leg up on its competition.In addition, the drone offers two unique autonomous modes to give a helping hand to novice pilots. The “Follow Me” mode attaches the drone to the pilot (the one holding the controller), allowing it to fly on its own. The “Watch Me” mode allows the camera to be centered directly on the pilot, keeping the operator in line of view and in focus at all times, no matter how the drone is flying. In other words, Yuneec makes your life easier with these standalone modes. The ST10 + Personal Ground Station controller, included with all versions of the Q500, contains all the joysticks, buttons and settings you need to do it all: launch and land the drone, activate its functions and capture photos or videos. Featuring a crystal-clear 5.5-inch color touchscreen, the ST10 + gives you a front-row seat to observe exactly what the drone sees when it is flying.
While a large portion of the screen is devoted to a live video feed, pilots also receive constant notifications about battery life, altitude and distance from the controller, speed and positioning. GPS.
One of the first things we noticed after taking the drone out of its gigantic housing is its high-end design and sturdy frame. Equipped with a solid body and sturdy arms, even the drone’s legs prove to be incredibly stable, which is not always the case with this kind of drone. After having accumulated several hours of flight time and made landings on various terrains, the Yuneec Q500 still looks like new. Over time, the four foam pads attached to the ends of the legs will surely degrade, but even after our 30 or so flights, these have remained perfectly intact.
BATTERY LIFE AND CHARGING TIME
A 5,400mAh lithium-polymer battery in theory provides around 25 minutes of flight time, which we were able to confirm by keeping the drone in flight hovering.
By moving it more nervously and filming the video, the flight time decreases slightly to around 20 to 21 minutes. In addition, when you regularly fly in “Follow Me” or “Watch Me” mode, the battery lasts a little less than 20 minutes.
Fortunately, the piloting remote indicates the battery voltage, the remaining capacity, and gives several alerts when it starts to below.
While these warnings are great for anticipating the craft’s landing once the low battery alert appears, you don’t have to panic before it has plunged below 10.7V.
To recharge the batteries, be prepared to wait about two hours before getting a full charge. Waiting two hours to enjoy a 20-minute flight isn’t very exciting, so it’s a good idea to buy a spare or two.
A car charger is also delivered with the drone.
The ST10 + controller is also included and requires a little more patience when its juice hits zero. It took us almost five and a half hours of charging before the controller displayed full capacity! You can use the AC adapter or a standard USB power source with the included micro USB cable to charge it.
Of all the things the Q500 4K does very well, flight performance is arguably where it shines the most. Not only does its smart modes make for one of the easiest flights we’ve experienced, but we’ve also found that the controller’s easy-to-use dual joysticks make Angle mode incredibly natural, especially for novices.
For this reason, very little prior experience is required to fly the Q500 in the air within minutes of unboxing.
Just press the left button to start. After a few seconds, the Q500 4K takes off and goes up into the air as long as you press the button.
When you release the controls completely, the drone’s GPS system allows it to hover effortlessly in a fixed (geostationary) position.
Steering the drone is also very simple, as the right joystick moves the Q500 forward (up) or backward (down), and left (left) or right (right).
After just a few minutes, piloting the craft begins to feel like second nature.
More responsive than any drone we’ve flown, every action on the controller runs almost instantly on the drone itself, moving it in the desired direction based on the pressure applied.
The two smart modes are perfect for amateur pilots to learn the ropes of piloting.
Our tests have shown us that the “Follow Me” mode is perfectly suited to follow the controller while remaining about 20 to 25 feet from the ST10 +.
The “Watch Me” mode is an even better illustration of the autonomy of the Yuneec Q500 4K, because no matter which direction we pointed the drone, the camera remained firmly focused on us the entire time.
According to Yuneec, the Q500 4K reaches around 28 km / h in “Angle” mode and 36 km / h in “Follow Me” or “Watch Me” mode. Our actual speed tests met these theoretical specifications.
CAMERA AND ACCESSORIES
Mounted directly under the machine, the CGO3 offers a field of view of 115 degrees, a Full HD resolution of 1080p and an ultra high definition 4K at 30 frames per second.
The ST10 + controller allows advanced adjustment of the camera’s video parameters, but novice pilots can rely on automatic adjustments.
In our testing, the automatic settings were found to be more than capable of capturing clean aerial video.
Not only does the camera lens capture a horizon without distortion, but the level of detail it captures while recording is astounding.
Plus, a simple adjustment of the camera’s pitch angle on the ST10 + controller allowed us to go straight from shooting to descent in seconds.
If 4K video is not quite your go-to speed, the Q500 also allows users to capture 1080p / 120fps slow-motion video, giving videographers more flexibility.
Shifting to idle on the ST10 + controller requires minimal navigation and allows mode switching when needed.
In terms of accessories or available upgrades, the Q500 4K already comes with everything you need right out of the box.
Other than aftermarket propellers, extra landing gear, or a set of decals, there’s just no reason to want anything other than the base version of this quadcopter.
This is yet another highlight of this drone, there is no need to shell out any extra cost after purchasing the Yuneec Q500 4K.
After spending around three weeks pushing the Q500 4K to its limits, our bottom line is simple: this drone has just about everything you want in a drone.
With smart controls designed to make it easier for beginners to learn, an intuitive control system, and one of the best built-in cameras we’ve ever seen on a similar drone, the Q500 is above its competition.
If it weren’t for the 20 minute limit on its batteries, we would have had a hard time getting it to land!
If you’re looking to capture professional-looking aerial footage without the price of a professional drone, the Q500 4K is a great choice. The built-in 4K camera easily rivals some professional devices, and the simple controls let you focus more on filming and less on piloting the drone.
All in all, this is one of the best quadcopters you can get for a budget of $ 800.
Battery for Yuneec Q500
This battery extends the flight time with a capacity of 6300mah. You’ll be glad to have a spare battery when you need those extra minutes.
Stable: after more than 20 cycles, the voltage difference is 30mV +, lower than all current brands on the market.
• Battery Type: Lithium Polymer (Lipo Battery)
• Current Rating : 10C • Voltage: 11.1V
• Capacity: 6300mAh
• Cell Meter: 3S
• Cell Configuration: 3S1P
• Continuous Discharge: 10C (64A)
• Max discharge rate: 20C (128A)
• Max voltage per cell: 4.2V
• Max voltage: 12.6V
• Min voltage: 9V
• Charge rate: 1C (6.4A)
• Dimensions: 172 x 52.5 x 33 mm
• Watt-hours: 66.6
• Weight: 418 g
• Energy density: 158.6 WH / KG
Battery charger for Yuneec Q500
Fast Charging: This charger is customized to charge Typhoon Q500 drone battery which takes less than 70 minutes to be fully charged.
Dual groove (1 port 6A 100W) can charge two batteries at the same time. Super smart loading step avoids all complex user operations.
TFT display Indicates the state of charge by clearly displaying the battery capacity.
It is possible to recharge two batteries simultaneously and optimize the charging mode to recharge faster.
While charging, the voltage and capacity of the battery are visual.
Yuneec Q500 4K Camera Filter
High-end multi-coated optical glass for premium HD quality images
Lightweight for zero-effect on the gimbal
nd1000 included for long exposure
Manufactured for use with h520, Typhoon H, Blade Chroma , Typhoon Q500 4K – 4K, Typhoon cgo3 and Typhoon cgo3 + camera lens
ST10P4KEU Remote Control for Yuneec Q500 4K
All-inclusive, transmitter and receiver with 5.5-inch screen.
Real-time telemetry data on-screen while in flight.
Video transmission frequency: 5.8 GHz.
Ability to manually check all camera settings.
Remote control for Typhoon Q500 4K.
Carrying backpack for Yuneec Typhoon Q500
The carrying case is very robust and optimal for transporting and keeping the Yuneec Typhoon Q500 drone
The inlay is made of rigid pre-perforated foam, which wraps completely around the drone and ensures maximum security during transport and storage
IMPORTANT: the propeller must be unscrewed for transport and the Gimbal can be installed
Side compartments for small items, such as smartphones, computers, etc., in the cover
Dimensions Outside: 56 x 50 x 30 cm, Weight (net): 1.7 kg
Yuneec – Backpack for Q Serie
Official Yuneec carry bag
Material: Synthetic fiber
Dimensions (WxDxH): 180 X 400 X 30mm
Weight: 0.06 Kg