Product Type: Syma toys
Newest Review: ... increase in velocity than going up and down - especially down, of course. It's all good fun! The Syma s107 has a 3-channel frequen... more
The Ceiling's The Limit!
Syma S107 Helicopter
Member Name: bilbobaginz
Syma S107 Helicopter
Date: 26/02/13, updated on 27/02/13 (108 review reads)
Advantages: Good quality materials, intricately placed, realistic shape, flies well.
Disadvantages: Cogs disconnect and it's hard to get the hang of!
Packaging & Build Quality:
The helicopter comes in a partially transparent cardboard box, allowing you to inspect the design features and general build of the device before purchasing. All components are visible, and on first sight, the helicopter seems impressive. The metal frame at the centre is crisply cut and formed, and the motorized plastic cogs within that frame are fitted well, seamlessly coinciding with other moving parts and the coloured plastic outer-shell. You can tell they've really thought about the design; how the helicopter can be made to look sleek, stylish and (most importantly to some) realistic, whilst maintaining complete functionality - after all, this is a very functional toy that you hope will be reliable and long-lasting. The build quality of the helicopter certainly screams longevity, but the fiddly nature of its parts and their complexity places the toy in ornament territory... will the device be long-lasting if flown regularly, and crash landed just as frequently? I think the quality of materials used and their positioning certainly gives the device a good fighting chance of survival. The tail for instance, is mounted rigidly to the metal body (frame) by a central metal beam (supporting the tail blades and fin), with two supporting beams helping to disperse shock-waves to more of the structure, on impact. The helicopter is finished off with some basic logo stickers on the plastic shell, blades and tail-wing. The overall build quality is excellent, and well demonstrated by the packaging.
Design & Performance:
The controllers design is simple, but effective. Constructed of a moderate quality plastic, the controller has an on/off switch, a left lever for upward and downward motion (throttle control), a right joystick (of similar size) for swaying left/right and moving forward/back, and a mini-USB charge cable plumbed into the controllers batteries (so that the device can be charged from the controller). It runs on AA batteries.
Charging the aircraft can be done in two ways. I've already mentioned the cable connected to the controller, which is hidden from behind a trap door in the rear of the hand-held remote. This method of charge takes no longer than 1 hour, but there is also another way, a USB cable with an end for your helicopter and an end for your PC/laptop. Charging this way takes a lot less time! Once fully charged, the plane will fly for between 3 and 7 minutes, depending on the ruggedness of your flight - a steady hover could give you the full 7 minute flight time, whilst applying full throttle for the majority of the flight and/or moving from one area to another will shorten the time by a half.
The helicopter has two sets of thin plastic blade which rotate in an opposite direction from one another, maintaining aerodynamic balance. The blades are free-supporting, and are mounted on flexible joints. This acts to reduce damage taken when the inevitable crashes occur. But the stability of the craft also relies on a third element: a double-weighted rotating arm above the blades, which acts to dissipate the lateral loads presented by low winds and any turning motion. In order to make the helicopter go forward and back, a tiny (fragile) blade, vertically mounted to the tail, can be powered up or down by pushing up or down on the left control trigger of the controller.
When you finally fire up the electric motor (by thumbing a switch both on the helicopter and controller), after charging, you have to reach a certain throttle level (about 1/4 of the way up) before the helicopter generates enough lift to set off. At the point where the lift surpasses the mass the craft raises gingerly, then all additional power supplied after that (levering up further) raises the craft much more sharply. The low-weight components come into their own, allowing the helicopter to move nimbly through the air - and the same is said of turning. Moving forward and backward however, is a slower process, a more gradual increase in velocity than going up and down - especially down, of course. It's all good fun!
The Syma s107 has a 3-channel frequency, meaning up to three craft can be flown at any one time (by separate controllers). This is where the fun begins! Air to air duels, races and time-trials can ensue, adding countless hours of addictive competition.
There is an LED flashing or strobing (red/blue) light on the nose of the aircraft. This doesn't produce enough luminance to help you see where you're going in total darkness, but in semi-darkness and even daylight the light is acts as an aesthetically pleasing addition to the design. I'm not sure what percentage of battery consumption it uses, but I doubt it's much.
I have had little issue with the Syma S107 whilst using it around the house - I have yet to test it outside though, and I doubt it will be able to stand up to the challenge of varying weather conditions (even small winds will throw the craft off balance). The only major source of negativity came when the helicopter was hit (occasionally) against something hard or at high velocity - The vibrations from the crash would pulse through the chassis to the helicopters internal plastic cogs, disconnecting them from one another. Although this issue could be resolved each time in under 30 seconds (by simply reconnecting the cogs by pushing with the tip of a screw-driver), the problems continual occurrence could get very irritating.
I found the helicopter flew very well for such a small, intricate piece of kit, and the general robustness and accuracy of its parts meant landing on (and taking off from) rugged surfaces or uneven slopes was very easy. However, sometimes if the toy took off from an uneven surface it would continue on that wonky trajectory, until either my brother would panic and shut off power (causing the craft to drop as a dead weight to the ground), or the helicopter would strike something and the cogs would come loose.
It is certainly a difficult toy to get the hang of. It took me a good 3 or 4 tries before I finally came to terms with the controls and how much throttle / turn I had to apply to achieve a smooth flight. But this is all part of the fun. Once you've mastered the bird, you can start the real fun, racing with your friends, or attempting to pick up objects with the ski-shaped legs. All in all this is a thoroughly recommendable product!
RECOMMENDED: ages 8 - 50
Summary: Golly, what a lot of fun!
- Ugglys Electronic Pet
- Thinkway Despicable Me 2 Laughing Figure Minion Stuart
- VTech Storio Carry Case
- Disney Monsters University Grow & Play Teaching Tablet
- Wesco Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver LED Torch
- Bandai Catcha Beast - Blue
- My Life Portable Console - Virtual Life Simulator
- Paladone Shocking - Shock Ball
- Mattel Harry Potter 20Q
- Character Options Rastamouse Singalong Mic