TEST: Hubsan H122D X4 STORM

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INTRODUCTION

The Hubsan H122D X4 Storm is a new racer style from Hubsan. It’s a brushed model… . Yes strange choice when nowdays 90% of FPV racers are brushless. In order to increase the powerlift of the H122D, this new model uses 2S 10mm strong brushed motors. More, the camera is not only a FPV model but also inboard record in 720p format. Two versions are proposed: a standard RTF edition and a FPV edition including a 4.3″ FPV monitor and a goggle mask. Let’s have a look to this new Hubsan product.

BOX CONTENT

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+ 1 x Hubsan H122D
+ 1 x 710mAh 2S LiHV battery (with balancer plug only)
+ 1 x Transmitter (using 4xAAA batteries not included)
+ 1 x 4.3″ FPV monitor
+ 1 x FPV mask
+ 1 x 5.8G linear antenna
+ 1 x Sunshade
+ 1 x USB charging cable
+ 1 x USB to microUSB cable
+ 4 x Spare props (2 CW, 2 CCW)
+ 1 x Screwdriver
+ 1 x Instruction manual (English)

Notice the sunshade module can be installed also for H501S radios.

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OVERVIEW

The Hubsan H122D is a 130mm quadcopter inspired for the syle with last Walkera rodeo racers.

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The machine is mostly build on a 3K carbon base. For example the main lower/arms plate is a 2mm piece.

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Latteral plates are 0.8mm. Battery is installed on top. All electronic elements are perfectly jailed into the structure. Generally the machine looks solid and durable… except the props directly exposed.

-FRONT VIEW
To make LOS flights more easy, a strong white light is installed and controllable via the radiotransmitter.

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A central font plastic conapy protect the FPV camera. Motors pods also are in plastic. Except these two elements, the rest in carbon. The machine looks solid…

-SIDE VIEW
On the right side, a microSD card slot can be found. No click during the insertion of the card… In practice, the card can be lost after a hard crash.

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Good news for motor maintenance, they are connected via a small JST model.

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The left side welcomes a microUSB port… probably for future firmware updates… We can dream one day a spefici software to tune PIDs and to turn on advanced flight mode such as Acro.

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The VTX module is located rear. A metallic shield is here to minimize interference. No indication about the output power but since there is a CE logo on the box, we can expect a maximum of 25mW. There is uFL connector so it won’t be hard to change the antenna.

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No Vfreq/Vband selection since the Hubsan Protocol can control the Vfreq via the radio.

-REAR VIEW
As walkera models, two red lights are located in the rear part. The left one indicates the power status while the right the binding status. The right stays solid when it’s bound.

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The 5.8G linear antenna can be oriented/folded for transportation.

-UPPER VIEW
The H122D is connected to the battery via the balancer plug…

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-BOTTOM VIEW
A Buzzer is here. As soon as the transmission link is lost, the buzzer will start to emit.

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Unfortunatly, no possibility to trigger the buzzer from a radio button. The main flight controller board is not protected from any water contact from the bottom…

-WEIGHT
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Close to 118g with the battery !!!! It’s heavy for a direct brushed machine.

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Motors and props

Motors are well protected into a high quality plastic pods

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Inside strong 2S compatible 10mm coreless brushed motors. Probably the biggest model we can find in the market. Will they give enough power versus a brushless edition ? That’s the main question. But for sure…. they will be under big stress under load…. and they durability will be reduced. Stock in advance at least one clockwise and one counter clockwise model.

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Props are secured with a tiny screws…. 65mm model.

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Since the machine is relatively heavy, I regret that only four spare ones are given in the bundle.

LiPo

A 710mAh 2S model is provided… It’s not a LiPo since the nominal voltage is 7.6V… more probably a LIHV. Notice the absence of a main lead connector… It means it will be hard to recharge via another charger. The actual one charge the battery in 1.5h… It’s long.

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Camera module

A compact FPV camera with a field of view about 120 degrees is installed. Good news, the orientation is ajustable …. but no information about the number of TVL and light sensitivity… For the light sentivity, in practice it’s not fantastic …. it’s darker than classic 1lux CMOS camera. For example, sun looks as black hole…. not a good sign for a good light sensitivity.

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FPV monitor & Mask

For the FPV bundle, we got a 4.3″ FPV monitor. The screen display is brillant so offering a lot of reflexion.

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Good news, there is a microSD slot on the right side when you can save photo or videos of the received FPV link. Files are recorded in VGA format (640×480) @ 30fps.

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Four bottom are located on the left side. The first “mode” selects between photo and camera functions. The second trigger photo shooting or video recording. The third enters into a menu where you can ajust the brightness, the saturation, the color and the Vfreq of the FPV rig. The last “CE” clear all OSD information from the screen if short pressed but enter into a binding mode when pressed more than 3s. some beeps are emitted in such mode. You will see in the video the exact procedure to full bind the H122D with both the radio and the FPV monitor… but you need first to run the binding from the FPV monitor before the binding of the transmitter.

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A builtin 2300mAh 1S LiPo is installed and offers more than 1h30 of usage. The LiPo is recharged via the microUSB port located on the right side.

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Despite the brillant screen, the video rendition is pretty good, sharp and precise. More, even without the sunshade protector, the screen is relatively well seen with daylights.

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There are lot of OSD informations displayed… At the top central position you have the photo/camera icons for the builtin quadcopter DVR recorder.More on the right the icons are for the builtin DVR of the monitor. You can monitor the Vbat on the top left and the current Pitch & Roll of the machine as well as the stick current values.

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The FPV mask is large, larger than any Eachine model for example and by consequence more heavy as well. Stand alone without the FPV monitor and antenna, it’s more than 450g… so expect a total weight superior to 600g.

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It’s easy to install the FPV monitor but you will need to turn on it first as well to turn on DVR recording before to close the box. No possibility to access to the four left button when the mask is closed.

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No latteral lens distance ajustement is possible …. but the mask’lengh is long enough to handle basic myopia/hypermetropia

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The mask opening is also large…. Correction glasses can used with

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the noze section is also large enough for occidental morphologies

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There are a lot of reflexions unfortunatly …..

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but the video feedback is clear, crips and precise

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Transmitter

The transmitter uses a gamepad style chassis with four shoulder buttons. The left one controls the photo and video recording. The right one ajust left and right trimming directions. Notice than the photo button when press and hold at power up stats the binding procedure.

On the front panel, the power button need to be pressed more than 3-4s to turn on/off the radio. A large circle button on left turn on/off the front light and the other one on the right turn on/off OSD information on the screen. If you click on the right stick you can select one of the two speed modes. If you click on the left stick, a 360 flips can be done. I deeply regret the absence of a flight mode selection…. No acro mode possible … the machine offers only 6-axis stabilized mode.

4xAAA batteries are required to feed the transmitter. Notice, there is a microUSB port centrally… Probably also to flash a future firmware update.

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UNBOXING, ANALYSIS AND DEMO FLIGHT

For sure with a proprieatery system, the H122D works flawless out of the box.. Charge the battery, install the 4xAAA batteries in the transmitter… Turn on everything and you can fly. One good news the FPV monitor rendition is pretty good and you can fly with it installed on the FPV mount associated with the transmitter. Best renditions are obtained when the monitor is inserted into the Mask. The depth rendition is pretty good, the image look much bigger and despite the absence of any lens ajustement, the image looks well focused even for old eyes. That’s definitively a good point…. I really appreciate the presence of a Builtin DVR as well.

When armed, the machine emits a little treeble sound in general associated with 2S brushed solution. Despite being a 118g machine, the motors manage to push relatively well the machine … That’s a good point…. Default PIDs settings are well tune and the machine can be fast. No specific woobles after a fast hard turns and no altitude lost.

Let’s start with the bad things …. Clearly the really annoying point is the latency introduced by the camera system (probably in order to record 720p files)… The latency is at minimum of 130ms !!!! It’s too much for a FPV racer machine… Once would say… since there is no acro flight mode who cares to have 130 ms ? …. I care… More, the frame rate displayed of the FPV monitor look poor …. even slower than a for a PAL transmission…. and in practice it’s just bit better than a WiFi transmission… You can imagine ? … Damned Hubsan managed to transform analog 5.8G NTSC transmission almost as laggy as a WiFi solution…. Don’t worry it’s not so catastrophic … but bye-bye attempts to fly this machine in tiny spaces. This machine requires more open large spaces.

The FPV range is about 100mm and the RX sensitivity of the monitor not so bad…. Another good point. In term of flight duration, you can fly this machine 5min with recording turned on… no so bad. Despite having a relatively poor light sensitivity, the 720p recordings are really not bad.. relatively precise and crisp… What’s a pity that the associated CMOS sensor is not a bit more sensitive.

CONCLUSIONS

The Hubsan H122D is not a FPV racer but a beginner mid-flyer FPV cruizer dedicaced to large open spaces. If the flight performances are pretty good, as well as the battery duration and 720p recordings…. the limitations introduced by the laggy FPV system and absence of an acro mode don’t allow the H122D to be considered as a real FPV racer.

PROS

+ Full complete FPV solution
+ Solid frame
+ Use H501 protocol
+ Good 720p recording
+ Orientable lens
+ Good goggles mask
+ Offer relatively good powerlifts
+ Builtin DVR for the 4.3″ FPV monitor

CONS

– Latency > 130ms
– Low frame rate for both the FPV & 720p recordings (23-24fps)
– Below average light sensitivity
– No acro mode
– Not a FPV racer
– No lead connector for the battery
– A bit heavy (118g)

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 119USD at https://www.banggood.com/Hubsan-H122D-X4-STORM-5_8G-FPV-Micro-Racing-Drone-Quadcopter-With-720P-Camera-HV002-Googles-p-1209363.html

12 Comments

  • roger cligg says:

    Excellent review.I might try one and hope motors do not freak out like the 501

    • SeByDocKy says:

      Thanks… Be aware it’s a brushed machine with big coreless motors… I am little bit bit afraid about their durability…. 20-30 flights ?
      That’s an open question;…

  • Nick Palmantouras says:

    Hello from Greece!very nice review…!could u please make a video how u can bind it and if all the functions works with jumper t8sg?

    • SeByDocKy says:

      If you check the associated video I showed the binding procedure…. For the Jumper T8SG… the binding is a bit random due to the poor clock precision of the A7105 inside the 4-in-1 multimodule… I managed 3-4 times to bind with but after multiple tries

  • Joe says:

    Is the plug on the battery a jst xh? Wondering if these batteries are compatible as there don’t seem to be any hubsan spares available anywhere:

    https://hobbyking.com/en_us/turnigy-bolt-500mah-2s-7-6v-65-130c-high-voltage-lipoly-pack-lihv.html

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello, can we replace the hubsan propellers by generic propellers? if yes, what brand will you advise me to replace it

    • SeByDocKy says:

      I am afraid the hub diameter section is larger for these props than the classic 1mm associated with generic props…. Whatever, now official props spare are available …. Probably the best replacement choice in this case

  • FireAngel says:

    Hello SeByDocky, Do you have a model for the Devo10 that you could post on deviationtx.com or rcgroups? If you cant use Betaflight how do you setup the aux channels.

    Thankyou

    • SeByDocKy says:

      Sorry, I don’t have any particular config file for this bird 🙁 … Channel mapping is

      CHANNEL1 = 0, // Aileron
      CHANNEL2, // Elevator
      CHANNEL3, // Throttle
      CHANNEL4, // Rudder
      CHANNEL5, // Leds
      CHANNEL6, // Flip (or Altitude Hold on H501S, Stabilized mode on/off on H301)
      CHANNEL7, // Still camera
      CHANNEL8, // Video camera
      CHANNEL9, // Headless
      CHANNEL10, // RTH
      CHANNEL11, // GPS HOLD

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