TEST: SKYSTARS Ghostrider X95

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INTRODUCTION

The SKYSTARS Ghostrider X95 (GR-X95) is a 95mm FPV racer with a full transparent plastic body diffusing cool light’s effects. The GR-X95 frame is a full monoblock pastic model with a builtin prop guard. For the electronic, we have a F4+betaflightOSD flight controller, some 20A/Dshot600 ready 4-in-1 ESC 4S compatible and for the motors some 1104/7500Kv. The FPV rig is composed of a 700TVL CMOS micro camera and a 48CH/200mW max 5.8G VTX. The control of the VTX can be done via the OSD thanks to the IRC tramp communication. The GR-X95 can be found in PNP or in BNF with either a FrSky D16 or a Flysky AFHDS-2A solution. There are already planty of such FPV racers in the market… Is this one bring something new/better ? Let’s have a look.

BOX CONTENT

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+ 1 x Skystars Ghostrider X95
+ 4 x Spare props (2 CW, 2 CCW)
+ 1 x SBUS/Serial receiver cable
+ 1 x Bracelet
+ 1 x Set of stickers

No instruction manual….

OVERVIEW

The frame is pure X-design of 95mm

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The main central inner square is a boon of 3mm of thickness while each individual bar of the prop guard system is only 1.5mm. The material is a flexible transparent pastic. Flexible enough to be deformed and absorbe energy of most type of crashes.

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-FRONT VIEW
The design is pretty cool full white transparent with a tall central dome jailing all the electronic tower and the FPV camera. Mine came in PNP version

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With a FrSky XM+ attached, I decided to drill two small holes on the top of canopy to install vertically both antennas.

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It reminds me the famous cartoon caractar Maestro from “once upon the human”

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Out of the box, the machine comes with the classic “prop in” configuration. I decided to use more the prop out system to have the lens “grass-free”.

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-SIDE VIEW
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The left side is the unique way to access to the microUSB port and the boot button of the F4 ominibus flight controller. You will need to use a USB cable with a very thin USB connector.

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Unfortunatly, via this hole, you can’t access to the unique VTX button located just above. You will need to disassemble the top cover if you want the access. It’s not a big deal since the VTX can be completly controled via the OSD.

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-REAR VIEW

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With the FrSky XM+ installed rear.

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-UPPER VIEW
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-BOTTOM VIEW
A battery strap is preinstalled long enough even for a compact 4S battery. On the bottom, rubber anti-slicing band is installed to secure the battery installation

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Two of the four M2 hexscrews holding the tall dome. The associated screw’s threads are in plastic so be aware versus multiple opening or crash…. These threads will have some loose….. and you will need probably a new spare dome.

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-WEIGHT

Almost 88g standalone …. clearly it’s not light….

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and above 110g with a basic 3S 350mAh LiPo. Expect to be above 125g in 4S.

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Motors and props

1104/7500Kv….. they can handle without problem 4S….. but as you will see….you can already forget 4S applications.

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It’s strongly advised to secure each motor’s screws with a thread locker….. As you will see vibrations are really important and if you don’t want to loose mid-flight a motor…. gluing the four M2 hexscrews is really recommanded.

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Triblades 2040 chrystal clear prop are installed and four given as spare in the bundle.

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Camera module

Assumed to be a 700TVL CMOS 1/3″ model with a sensitivity of 0.1Lux. Annonced to be a NTSC/PAL also but in practice it’s turned in PAL by default. The fied of view is about 115 degrees.

The lens can be oriented from 0 degrees up to 60 degrees without canopy/prop occlusion.

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I didn’t find a switch to turn the camera into NTSC.

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Disassembling

The top layer is a buzzer/led lights floor. Lights are completly configurable via Betaflight.

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A free UART6 3p port is available. Use the cable to connect your favorite receiver.

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A close up on the microUSB port and the boot button to update Betaflight.

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When the serial receiver is attached

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UNBOXING, ANALYSIS, CONFIGURATION AND DEMO FLIGHT

Out of the box, the machine is well tuned in betaflight at least in term of receiver, flight modes, OSD and light controls. The F4 omnibus board is flashed with Betaflight 3.5.3 so a modern version. All PIDs and filter settings have been also optimized probably more for 2S setup. In term of flight modes, anti-gravity and air mode are enable by default for all flight modes. Even “flip over crashed” is enable via the AUX3. So just a little fine-tuning is required to match your own choices. A good start at least. The machine is strangely adveritized to be flew more in 2S while ESC & motors can support 4S… strange…..
And effectively as soon as you start to plug a 3S LiPo, you understand: below 50% of throttle input this machine is noisy but fly ok. It’s not a monster of power at least for this rate. But when you push the throttle stick further, you can hear massive vibrations in the structure and of course it’s directly translated into huge vibrations in the FPV signal video. More the light sensitivity of the CMOS camera is pretty poor with for example the “black sun” effect. This camera is not sharp too… Really a disapointing model need to swapped for a better camera.

These vibrations are really really annoying….. execpt if you plan to cruize slowly with, it’s killing the interest to this machine. I tried different PID & filter optimisations…. no real better results obtained. Clearly a disapointing situation. Flight time with a 350mah are also short, about 3min30s maximum….. At least in term of durability of the structure, I was positively impressed. I crashed the machine many times into soft groud, trees & branches…. No damage at all. I can’t promise same results over hard concrete.

CONCLUSIONS

The SKYSTARS Ghostrider X95 is finally a disapointing machine linked with the poor FPV camera and the huge vibrations as soon as we start to fly the machine a little bit in a sporty way…… If we can replace easily the camera for a better model, it’s another story for the vibrations. Probably a new frame is required…. Finally…. the interest of the GR-X95 is limited versus flawless competitors except if the light effects is a must to have for you.

PROS

+ Cool light effect
+ Monoblock pastic durable frame
+ F4 board
+ IRC tramp compatible VTX

CONS

– Tons of vibation from 50% of throttle input
– Poor FPV camera with poor light sensitivity
– Need to open the machine to bind the receiver
– Heavy

Dump_BF_3_5_3

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 132USD at https://www.banggood.com/SKYSTARS-2019-Ghostrider-X95-95mm-FPV-Racing-RC-Drone-DIY-PNP-BNF-F4-OSD-200mW-20A-BLHeli_S-700TVL-p-1399455.html?p=YL2512105842201212FR

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