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JJRC H8C Review: A Budget-Friendly Camera Drone

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If you’re looking for a fun quadcopter to fly, then check out the JJRC H8C. It’s at par with other popular models like the UDI U818A and Syma X5C. Although, its ultimate goal is to exceed what these popular models can offer.

With an average flight time of 7 minutes and an 80-meter range, you’ll have a blast with this beginner quadcopter.

With a sleek design, the overall look of the H8C drone is undoubtedly cool and pretty exciting. Its black version looks cooler and has a more “racy” appeal. However, the color doesn’t affect its speed and overall performance.

Despite being a mini-sized drone, it has a load carrying capacity. You can mount a GoPro and Gimbal (for the version without camera) without causing too much strain on your drone.

Thanks to its powerful rotor motors, it can maintain smooth flight despite the added weight. However, you can also find a version of the H8C drone that already comes with a camera.

In this JJRC H8C review, we’ll show you what else this cool quadcopter has to offer.

Specifications of the JJRC H8C quadcopter:

-Size: 240mm (diagonal)

-Body size: 200 x 200 x 50mm (without propellers)

-Weight: About 144g (with battery and camera/without prop guards)

-Color: White, Black

-Control distance: About 80m

-Charging time: About 90mins

-Flight time: 6 to 8mins

-Battery: 7.4V 500mAh

-Battery Dimension: 46 x 11 x 45mm

-Battery weight: 23.3g

What Comes in the Box?

Here’s what comes in the box when you buy the JJRC H8C:

-H8C RTF drone

-2-Megapixel 720p Camera

-4 Propeller Guards

-4 Spare Propellers

-1-pair Landing Gear

-2.4G Transmitter

-7.4V 500mAh LiPo battery

-English User Manual

-2GB Micro SD Card

-Card Reader

-Tool Set

-Charging Cable

h8c drone

This is an example of an RTF (ready-to-fly) drone, meaning it can be flown straight out of the box. You won’t need to buy any additional parts or assemble anything.

However, since the drone only gives you 5-7 minutes of flight time, you might want to consider buying spare batteries. It takes about 60-90 minutes to recharge its battery so a second charger could also come in handy.

While this quadcopter can be flown indoors, we highly recommend flying it outdoors. In my opinion, it’s not quite small enough to be flown indoors, especially if you are living in a small apartment.

You won’t be able to have as much fun when you’re trying too hard to avoid crashing on things. For something that can be flown inside, we recommend the CX-10 mini-drone.

Outdoors, the H8C drone can fly steadily even with winds that are as fast as 5km/h. If the wind is 10km/h or more quickly, the drone may struggle flying unless at 100% gyro sensitivity.

However, using 100% gyro sensitivity is not particularly advisable since it will significantly wear down your drone’s motors.

Pros

  • The first significant advantage to buying the JJRC H8C is that it is very affordable. So you’ll get great value for your dollar. More so, it comes with a sleek and exciting exterior design, so it doesn’t look very cheap. It also has a power switch so you can quickly turn it on or off.
  • With regards to flight capabilities, with four difficulty modes to choose from, even beginners will have no problem flying it. Flyers will also appreciate the drone’s flight time (about 7 minutes) and range (about 80 meters). It also has powerful motors that allow the drone to fly faster once the flyer gets the hang of it.
  • Even as a beginner, you can also have fun doing stunts with the H8C drone. It is possible because of its single-button flip on the transmitter
  • Even at its price, it already comes with a 2MP 720p camera that allows you to capture photos and videos.

Cons

  • One readily observable downside of the drone is that it’s not very good at hovering in the wind. If you’re flying at say, the beach, maintaining a steady hover will be near impossible. However, if you’re flying in regular conditions with no breeze, this drone will operate like a champ.
  • From other H8C reviews, one prevailing complaint is the premature motor failure. This will be explained in detail later on as well as the possible solutions to it.
  • Another issue is the generated heat caused by the friction of the spinning shaft. However, this can be quickly resolved by doing some simple steps mentioned below. So read on to know the full details of the JJRC J8C quadcopter.

Sleek Body and Design

The first thing you’ll notice about this 6-axis H8C drone is its smooth and exciting exterior design. Along the wings, it has red and silver patches which, combined with the drone’s black body, looks pretty cool!

Like most RC drones, the H8C has LED lights that allow you to orient yourself during night time flight sessions.

At the bottom part, you’ll notice a feature that you will not find in smaller quadcopters – the power switch. Smaller drone models, like the F180, need to be connected to the battery plug to turn it on.

For the H8C, on the contrary, you need to flick the power switch. You’ll no longer have to connect or disconnect its batteries to turn it on or off.

Powerful Motors and Battery

jjrc h8c reviews

If compared to X5C, H8C boasts of more powerful motors that enable it to fly more responsively and accurately. Mainly, these motors are more powerful since they run at 7.4V. On the other hand, the X5C and other similar models are only powered by 3.5V.

These powerful motors undeniably provide more thrust and reserve power. However, they also have a downside that will be explained in the latter section of this post.

The Transmitter

The H8C comes with a standard 4-channel, 2.4GHz transmitter. What we like about the transmitter is that it comes with an LCD screen that displays information like throttle position, the flight mode you’re in, and more.

To “activate” (a.k.a. pair) your drone with the transmitter, push the left throttle stick up and then back down. Once you do this, the drone’s LED lights will stop blinking rapidly and instead remain lit. Once the JJRC H8C begins running low on battery, its LED lights will start to flash quickly once again.

To toggle between the difficulty modes, there is a button on the upper left of the transmitter. With regards to the control pads, the one on the right is the aileron or elevator. On the other hand, the left control pad is the throttle or rudder.

You may also use the left control pad to control the drone’s camera. Pressing down will turn the video recording on or off. The up button, meanwhile, may be used to take photos.

Keep in mind that, like most transmitters, it’s made from a cheap plastic that can easily break if you drop it.

Decent Recording Capabilities

Next, we’re going to talk about the drone’s recording capabilities. This quadcopter comes with a 720p HD 2-megapixel camera. It can take pictures as well as record, and all data gets stored to a 2GB micro SD card.

With that said, don’t expect HD quality footage. Given its price point, you wouldn’t also expect it to provide professional looking photos and videos.

The camera might say “HD” in its name, but it doesn’t offer nearly the quality as something like the DJI Phantom. To give you an idea of what to expect, here’s some sample footage:

If you are opting for the version with no camera, then you can easily strap on your action cam such as GoPro or SJCam. With these, you will be able to capture better quality photos and videos.

Warning – No Gimbal

jjrc h8c

A “gimbal” is something that sits underneath a drone that allows you to control the direction of the camera. This quadcopter does not come with a gimbal.

This means that the camera angle will remain fixed throughout your flight. If you want to adjust it, you’ll need to land the drone and do it manually.

Typically, only expensive models like the DJI Inspire come with gimbals. On the same token, this drone doesn’t offer FPV (first person flying) recording.

FPV is when you’re able to see what your drone’s camera sees in real time. The H8C doesn’t offer this either. The Hubsan X4 H107D is a cheap FPV recorder that’s worth checking out if you want this feature.

Easy Single-Button Flips

One of my favorite parts about the H8C is that it can perform flips at the push of a button.

Beginners think that they have to practice for years before they can do a flip. However, this isn’t true. With the help of a button on the H8C transmitter, you can easily make your drone flip.

On the transmitter, this is called the “stunt” button. Once pressed, the drone will beep when it’s ready to perform a flip. It will then perform the flip in the direction of your choice based on how you move the right stick. It’s that easy.

If you want to do a back flip, then press the stunt button and then backwards on the right joystick. Likewise, if you’re going to do a front flip, and then press the stunt button followed by pressing forwards on the right joystick.

Stunt buttons aren’t anything new. They can be found on competing models like the X5C quadcopter or the UDI U818A. Still, it’s a nice feature to keep in mind when shopping for a quadcopter.

Controls and Maneuverability

In this part of the JJRC H8C review, we’re going to talk about the drone’s maneuverability and controls. The H8C allows you to choose among 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%. Each percentage represents the sensitivity of the controls.

The higher the sensitivity, the more difficult it is to control (but the faster you’ll fly). Likewise, a lower sensitivity makes the drone easier to control, but it won’t fly as fast.

If you’re new to flying, set the sensitivity to the lowest possible setting. Then as you get more experienced, you can move up to 50%, 75%, and eventually, 100% sensitivity. So beginners can enjoy it just as much as an experienced flyer.

The controls are responsive (or in other words, they do not have lag time). In short, it has the potential to fly both conservatively or aggressively.

As soon as you press the right joystick to the left, the drone will move to the left. With this kind of responsiveness, you can control your quadcopter with confidence in any environment.

Potential Drawbacks

Premature motor failure

h8c drone

Despite all of its good qualities, the JJRC H8C isn’t perfect. One complaint that we see a lot in the Amazon comments is premature motor failures.

Although the motor of the H8C drone is sure powerful, it is still not enough to handle the 7.4V battery. There’s just too much current from the battery that causes the motor to fail. However, it does not mean that the H8C is an overall failure.

You may also still own and fly a JJRC H8C without wearing down its motor prematurely. You must remember that premature motor failure is primarily caused by aggressive flying. So to prevent it, avoid flying your drone at more than 50% gyro sensitivity.

If one or more of your motors wear out after sometime, you may still opt to replace just the engines. They are available and can be ordered in Amazon at an affordable price.

We’ve never experienced any such thing. However, this isn’t to say that other people haven’t.

Since this model is built outside of the United States, this isn’t surprising. If you’re worried about the durability and integrity of your drone, then get a higher quality model like the Parrot Bebop. You’ll end up spending more, but you’ll also get way more value in return.

Heat and friction on propeller shafts

Next issue, but of less importance, is the generated heat caused by the conflict when the shafts are spinning. Based on some H8C reviews, some owners resolved this by replacing the stock bushing rings with ball bearings.

The ball bearings are found to be a great alternative to reduce the generated heat. Also, some owners even apply lubricant on the propeller shafts and gearing to reduce friction and heat further.

In Summary

The JJRC H8C is an excellent beginner quadcopter. If you’ve never flown before, it might be a good idea to practice on something cheap first. Then, as you progress in skill, you can buy a more expensive model.

The H8C won’t break the bank, so even if you permanently crash it, you won’t be out much money.

As you have read, despite its cheap price, the H8C drone offers many great features. It is comparable, and even exceeded, other quadcopters of its price range and size.

If you are worried about the premature motor failure, we have also provided possible solutions. You may stick at flying only at 25% or 50% gyro sensitivity. Alternatively, you purchase replacement motors once your old ones wear out.

Regardless, the JJRC H8C is still a good choice for a budget-friendly drone for beginners. If you’ve had a good (or bad) experience with this quadcopter, share it in the comments section below. Good luck and fly safely.

About the Author David

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