TEST: DYS ELF 83mm

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INTRODUCTION

The DYS ELF 83mm is nothing else than a brushless slightly more larger Tiny Whoop FPV machine. Here bye-bye 0615 coreless brushed motors and hello to some 1102/10000KV strong brushless motors. The flight controller is a powerfull F3 board (a minimum nowdays) coupled with a MWOSD module. Associated with motors, we have a 4-in-1 10A BLheli_S/Dshot600 ESC board. The FPV system is based on a 800 CMOS TVL with 170 degrees of FOV and 5.8G 40CH 25mW/200mW VTX. All ingredients sound super promising ….. Let’s check how good (or not) in practice the bundle is.

BOX CONTENT

All elements are well jailed into a foam transportation structure

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+ 1 x DYS ELF 83mm
+ 1 x Transmitter (using 4xAA batteries not included)
+ 1 x 600mAh 2S LiPo 25C with JST XH (2.5mm) lead connector
+ 1 x Charger (for 2S & 3S LiPo)
+ 1 x Powerunit for the charger
+ 4 x Spare props (2 CW, 2 CCW)
+ 1 x Instruction manual (English)

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OVERVIEW

Let’s check first more precisely the technical elements. Promised flight time about 6min … be sure it’s always overrated.

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The main role of buttons and connectors installed bottom but we wil see that in details below.

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Bad news in practice the lower carbon frame is 1.25mm of thickness … so really fragile IMHO especially when a lot of stress is transmitted to the lower frame by the ducted system and the motor pods

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-FRONT VIEW

The design is cool … the top plastic canopy structure is highly profiled and protecting well both the FPV camera and the 2.4G receiver. The ducted system is not in carbon but made with a flexible plastic a little bit thin IMHO. For indoors flights, I am not sure the system will survice a long time if you crash the ELF on very hard floors.

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-SIDE VIEW
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Any presence of connector latterally … no visible antenneas as well.

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-REAR VIEW

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The microUSB port of the SPracing F3 board can be found in rear part of the tail

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-UPPER VIEW

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-BOTTOM VIEW

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Green light are installed in front motor’s pod and red ones in rear.

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The motor plastic pods are long and play the role of landing gear. They are build with a super solid transparent plastic.

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The drawback of this system in practice is the transmission of a shock impact/hard landing of the kinetic energy into the lower carbon frame structure. It’s advised to install some foam circles as landing pads. It will ammortize the shocks. A RCgroups user proposed to insteal some earfoam as depicted below

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The battery plastic tray is jailing perfectly the 600mAh battery

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but surpringly the 5.8G antenna is jailed between the FC and this plastic tray. More the feed antenna point is almost located in the middle. It means in practice, it’s super hard to install the 5.8G vertically down without sacrifying the plastic battery tray…. It’s a real drawback since most of the 200mW power will be absorbed or block by the frame carbon structure….

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To select the VTX power, you have two small pads installed nearby the VTX button. If they are soldered togather, 200mW is selected (default) if not it’s 25mW

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As you can see, the 200mW output power is preselected by default. The 5positions connector is another JST SH model with a pitch of 1mm. This connector represents a UART port and is usefull of you want to upgrade the MWOSD firmware.

The small button installed on front is the “boot” button to force the installation of firmware.

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As main power lead connector, a non classic JST XH 2.5mm connector far from the classic JST red one.

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At least you can insert a normal JST connector but be aware with the polarisation to not cook your machine

On the other side, we can find the VTX button to select the Vfreq (red light) and the Vband (blue light)

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40 channels are supported and in practice we have a 25mW/200mW VTX set by default on 200mW.

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To select the Vfreq, you need first to short press the button. The red light will flash from one to eight times corresponding the column index of the previous table. A short press will incremente the column index. If you need to change the Vband, you will need to long press (more than 3s) until the blue light is here. Short press one more time and the blue light will flash betwwen one up to five time correspondly to the current selected Vband. short press to incremente the Vband. After 10s of inactivity, the selection mode is turned off and the last setting automatically saved.

-WEIGHT

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A little bit less than 90g with the battery installed… so not super light. Imagine than the Jumper X68S is only 34g in the same situation!!!

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Motors and props

Some 1102 brushless motors announced to spin at 10 000 Kv. In practice, there are really powerfull…. even for a 2S system. It’s great positive point of the DYS ELF

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During my testing, after the first flight, one motor stopped to work. A short probably in the wiring

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but I managed to fix it 🙂

Pentablade props in practice robust and without introducing jello 🙂

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LiPo

A 690mAh 2S LiPo with a JST XH as main lead connector…. Really a non-typical choice and it’s hard to find LiPo with this choice. Luckely, you can insert a normal red JST connector. It works find but don’t be wrong with the polarity when you insert the JST connector !!!!

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Camera module

The 800TVL CMOS camera is well jailled into the profiled canopy module. We have a suepr wide angle lens installed, announced to be 170 degrees.

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For me it’s a lot for outdoors flights … but adquate for indoors training. No possibility to set the uptilt angle fixed to something around 10 degrees…

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Announced to support both NTSC and PAL systems, I didn’t see any microswitch for the selection. Maybe a small blob of solder to remove. By default the camera is a PAL model.

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Disassembling

Remove the five screws installed on the bottom side to access to the upper side

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Two 3 positions JST connector. The front is for the FPV camera while the rear is for the receiver with SBUS connection

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A buzzer is here and installed on front nearby the FPV camera plug.

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The camera is installed on front without the possibility to set the tilt orientation angle. Rear to him a FrSky D8 receiver with SBUS connection. Notice the 2.4G antenna is installed horrizontally not a good solution to extend the control range. The antenna mod is advised to do, i.e. drill a hole in the top canopy in order to install the antenna vertically

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Transmitter

For few dollars more from the BNF version, the RTF version offer a relatively good FrSky D8 compatible radio with a small LCD display and 4 switches: two 2-way and two 3-way. From left to right, the switches control: the arming, the flight mode, the OSD display and the buzzing.

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No miracle with a such cheap product… No possibility to save several config file, no possibility to update the firmware. Generally the stick precizion associated is far to reach the performance of a real deluxe radio but far to be catastrophic don’t be wrong. At least you can configure the Dual Rate, the expo, the inversion of channels and the mixing. The last item can be important if you plan to use a Taranis radio. For the taranis, the channel order sequence is different from the one implemented with this basic RTF radio. One way to solve thos problem is to re-assign correspondly the channel…. No problem is you are using a DeviationTX compatible radios 🙂

Four AA batteries are required to feed the transmitter. Good news, rechargeable Ni-Mh models are working with.

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UNBOXING, ANALYSIS, BINDING, CONFIGURATION AND DEMO FLIGHT

The actual FrSky receiver is running the binding procedure after 6s. So if you already bound the radio with the receiver, as soon as your turn on the quadcopter first, you will have to hurry to turn on the transmitter. If not, you will be able to see on top of the canopy a red light blinking fast synonym of binding procedure. If so, you will have to go in the “setup” section of the radio and run the “bind”. On the original radio, the RSSI is indicated via a 5 proressive bars in the top left corner. If you are using a Taranis or Devo controller, the RSSI and the Vbat is sent by telemetry :). What a the pity that the RSSI is not also send to an extra channel in order to feed the OSD with this information. The ELF comes with betaflight 3.1.5 pre-installed (Dump_DYS_Elf_BF_3_1_5), almost the last available currently.

I simply decreased a bit default Betaflight 3.1.5 PID settings and increased rates according to

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To change some FC and OSD settings, you can use your transmitter by : i) being desarmed, ii) move throttle in the middle and yaw to right and iii) push the pitch up. If it’s possible to change all settings of the OSD via sticks, I found it’s much more confortable to connect to the MWOSD GUI via a UARD connexion via a simple FDTI of CP2423 serial converter according to the following pinout.

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For a working a connexion you will have to connect TX-ELF to RX-converter and RX-ELF to TX-converter. Of course GND-ELF to GND-converter and +5V-ELF to +5V-converter. Be aware, you will need to user MWOSD r1.6:

I removed all horizon and vertical HUD lines useless for racer according the following MWOSD settings.

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First take-off and whaoohhh for a 2S setup with 1102 motors, it’s powerfull !!!! Punchout are really not bad at all !!! so definitively it will be a good candidate for acro figures. It’s noisy 🙁 in another hand. With the RTF radio, with default settings, the controls are nervous ….Definitively a fifth swutch would have been great to handle D/R. In fact, I think the gimbal don’t offer a great precizion 256 values probably far from 1024 or 2048 with higher professional radios. The controls with the same settings becomes much more smoother with a Devo 7E for example… In flight, the machine flies smoothly outdoors 🙂 it’s super fun …. even in stabilized angle mode, no bounce backs… It’s really enjoyable. The flight duration are in average about 5min, really not bad for a compact microFPV flyer. I really liked also the FPV camera with a better light sensitivity than average.

CONCLUSIONS

The DYS ELF 83mm is clearly a good machine: powerfull agile with a good FPV rig and OSD. IMHO, it’s more an outdoors flyer but can handle well narrow indoors spaces. I am not sure the ducted system brings something special or mainly playing the role of a prop guard but anyway results are here in term of stability. My main concerns are about the durability and robustness of the lower carbon frame and the plastic prop guard….Clearly won’t resist to any major crash on hard surfaces.

PROS

+ Great Flyer
+ Powerfull Machine even in 2S
+ Good FPV cam
+ Well tuned out of the box
+ Real RTF
+ MWOSD
+ Good FrSky D8 transmitter included in the RTF packaging
+ ~5min of flight time

CONS

– Fragile carbon lower frame
– Fragile Prop guard
– 5.8G antenna location
– No RSSI feedback in OSD
– No standart battery lead connector

This quadcopter have been courtesy provided by Banggood in order to make a fair and not biased review. I would like to thank them for this attitude.
You can find it actually for 165USD at https://www.banggood.com/DYS-83mm-Micro-Brushless-FPV-Racing-Drone-F3-BLheli_S-Dshot-5_8G-25MW-48CH-VTX-BNF-RTF-p-1132509.html

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