I’ve owned the Spektrum iX12 now for well over a year. After tens of hours of ownership and the radio being bound to several models, there are many features and advantages of this radio that stands out. Just for the record, I bought this radio with my own money, and the thoughts shared here are of my own opinion.
#1 – First Air Radio from Spektrum to Include a Tablet
I’ve been waiting for this for quite some time. Many manufactures of a variety of products are beginning to utilize the Android operating system. Not that I want to go on the internet or play mobile games on my transmitter. There’s more than enough devices that allow for that. What I was looking for is primarily an option to be able to do more with my radio. Options that were important to me at the time of purchase were programmable voice read outs and alerts, customization, more 3 position switches than I previously had, reliability and a decent amount of channels. This is exactly part of what the IX12 has to offer.
#2 – Highly Customizable Menus and Options
As mentioned above, one prime reason that I wanted to purchase the iX12 was due to the menu’s that are built in to the app installed on the tablet in the radio. All toggle switches, buttons and sliders built in to the iX12 are completely programmable. Any voice read outs that you need to be tied in with functionality on the radio such as RX voltage or model GPS speed can be pulled using macros. This allows you to customize the voice read outs / alerts to suit your requirements.
You can have a pre-flight check list that the radio will force you to go through based on your own setup. The check list functionality is fully customizable. You may also setup the flight check list to be certain switches are in the correct position.
#3 – Spektrum IX12 has the same great feel as the DX18
Although the DX18 and the iX12 appear as different radios, they contain many of the same lines. The iX12 feels very comfortable in your hands. Even with the included Lithium battery pack and tablet, the radio does not feel heavy. Button and switch positioning on the iX12 feels natural, and buttons have great response. I have not owned a DX18 but I do know when you have both radios in your hand, they both feel great.
#4 – Spektrum IX12 is built on a Reliable Platform
The very first question I had before purchasing the radio was, what happens if the tablet quits while flying? This would be a very common question coming from anyone who has used this technology before. Tablets are running quite a bit of software in order to function as they do. If you’ve owned a tablet, you know that they do crash from time to time. The tablet crashing should not allow your model to crash.
Obviously Spektrum has thought of this, and makes certain that you can operate your model without needing the tablet. You may lose your custom voice message when a switch is activating but you won’t lose your model aircraft.
Interference with the Spektrum iX12
Nope, none here. I am easily over 200 flights just on one airplane alone. Not once have I experienced a glitch or interference where I could not correctly control the model. This is true for the 10 years or so that I have owned Spektrum radios and not just on the iX12.
I do have one crash on this radio. I was fighting the aircraft for about a minute until my thought process ran out of CPU power and the plane went in. After walking up to the model, it was apparent that a control surface was stuck. After further investigation it has been determined that a Y servo extention was not providing a reliable connection between the rx and the 2 elevator surfaces. Not iX12 related.
#5 – Easy intuitive menus on the Tablet and App
This one is easy to explain. You have to keep in mind that there are so many more features on this radio when compared with any other Spektrum radio for air models. Even with all the additional stuff crammed in to the iX12, the menus feel very intuitive. What probably helps me is I’ve owned an Android based operating system on my cell phone for many years prior to owning the iX12. If you can work your way around a tablet or cell phone, working the iX12 will be a breeze.
Coming from the typical Spektrum radios of the past with a roller button and no android experience, will be a change of pace for sure. Once you are inside the AirWare software app installed on the device, learning where to access all the key information and model data will be learnt fairly quickly.
You no longer have to use a scroll wheel to scroll through a bunch of options you don’t need just to get to the option that you are looking for. Simply open up a menu and select the option that you are looking for. Navigating through the menu options is accomplished by touch screen functionality only.