Cheerson CX-10WD-TX WiFi (In-Depth Review)
The Cheerson CX-10WD-TX is currently the flagship CX-10 and has all the bells and whistles that Cheerson has to offer for its highly popular nano quadcopter series. This includes altitude hold, WiFi FPV and a transmitter that doubles as a carrying case.
Without doubt the CX-10WD is the most refined CX-10 to date and is one of the world’s smallest WiFi FPV drones. The addition of altitude hold is probably the most significant update this nano drone has had since it was released some two years ago.
Early versions of nano quadcopters such as the CX-10 were notorious for being difficult to fly. This is because nano drones are extremely light and have very low inertia which means they gain or lose altitude very quickly, sometimes, too quick for beginner pilots to handle. Altitude hold in nano drones simply solves this problem by making them a lot easier to handle.
The CX-10WD is available for just $39 at GeekBuying which provided the sample for this review. Besides silver, it is also available in gold and maroon.
- Dimensions: 62 x 62 x 28mm / 155 x 103 x 55mm (transmitter — without phone holder)
- Platform: Quadcopter
- Diagonal motor distance: 45mm
- Flight features:
- Altitude hold
- One-key return
- Headless mode
- 3D flips
- Auto take-off/land
- 3 flight speeds (30%, 60% and 100%)
- Gravity sensor control (via app)
- Propulsion: 6mm coreless (motors) / 30mm propellers
- Weight: 18g
- Camera resolution: 0.3MP stills and video (720 x 576)
- File format: JPEG/AVI
- Battery: 3.7V 150mAh Li Po
- Charging time: 30 minutes
- Flight time: about 5 minutes
- Control distance: about 20 to 50 meters
- Transmitter power: 2 AAA batteries (not included)
Although it does feel a bit plasticky, the CX-10WD transmitter has very good ergonomics and fits nicely in your hands with all buttons (except the power switch) within reach of your fingers. The distance between control sticks can also be adjusted from 103mm to 158mm, giving you a customized fit.
The only issue I have with it is the lack of rubberized grips and a power switch that’s located within the drone storage compartment. Accessing the power switch requires you to open the transparent cover first.
The transmitter is powered by two AAA batteries and a removable smartphone holder is also provided. The holder can fit smartphones of up to 5.5 inches. Both control sticks are self-centering and they have a nice feel and range which helps a lot in precision flying.
Overall, the transmitter is very compact, light and portable. You can store the CX-10WD in it and just throw it into your bag and bring it along with you without worrying about your drone getting damaged or going missing. Just remember to remove the smartphone holder to prevent it from getting damaged or broken.
As mentioned earlier, the CX-10WD features altitude hold which helps a lot in making it easier to pilot. With altitude hold, a pilot doesn’t have to pay constant attention to throttle control and can focus on other aspects of flying.
Early nano drones were difficult to hover and required at least intermediate skills in piloting. Beginners, who lacked a good sense of throttle control, often found these nano drones very difficult to fly. Thanks to altitude hold, this is no longer an issue.
Besides altitude hold, the CX-10WD also has a host of other nifty features such as headless mode, one-key return, 3D flips and auto take-off and landing — a feature which was once only available on larger and more expensive drones.
One feature that is worth mentioning here is the CX-10WD’s automatic motor shut-off which is usually not mentioned in product description pages. The feature is triggered when the drone is about one or two inches above a solid surface.
When flying the CX-10WD, it is easy to forget that you’re actually flying a nano quadcopter thanks to its smoothness and stability in the air. This is largely due to the drone’s altitude hold feature. 3 speed modes are available — 30%, 60% and 100% to suit different flying styles.
Besides the conventional transmitter, the CX-10WD can also be controlled using the CX-10W app which allows the drone to be controlled via WiFi. The app has a transmitter emulator and buttons to invoke various functions such as speed mode, flips and headless mode. It is also used to control the camera and store photos and videos on your smartphone.
Piloting the CX-10WD using the app’s emulator can be a bit tricky since there is no tactile feedback from actual control sticks. For this reason, piloting the drone using your phone’s accelerometer is the better way. This feature allows you to pilot the CX-10WD by tilting your phone and is a more intuitive way of flying.
One thing odd about the CX-10WD’s transmitter is that there are no trim buttons available. Trimming can only be done via the app which is somewhat disappointing.
For a nano drone, the CX-10WD comes with a camera that is surprisingly quite good. It is capable of taking 0.3 stills (720 x 576) and videos with reasonable clarity. Although not as good as what you’d get in a proper camera, the CX-10WD’s lens has acceptable quality for a toy drone that costs less than $50. In fact, it has slightly better image quality than some toy drones I’ve tested.
Above is an image gallery of photo samples taken with the CX-10WD. Since the transmitter does not have any button that controls the camera’s functions, the only way to take photos and videos is via the app.
The Cheerson CX-10WD is a very neat package for a nano drone which explains why it has quickly become a very popular model, taking over from the original CX-10 which was released some two years ago.
For just $39, you get a nano drone that is a lot of fun to fly indoors and a very well-designed transmitter that also functions as a carrying case. There are some quirks and flaws, of course, but the CX-10WD is a very solid package for something that costs less than $50. In short, it makes a great toy for children and adults alike.
Features and Performance9/10
- Comfortable transmitter and carrying case
- Very stable flight
- Reasonably good camera for a toy drone
- Auto take-off and land
- Short flight time
- Non-removable battery
- No trim buttons on transmitter
- No camera control buttons on transmitter