EMAX Nanohawk + GNB27 | Hands-On Review
It’S really great and in other ways, it’s really frustrating so today i want to give you my honest review of the emax nanohawk also, i just think it’s interesting to take a look at the design of a drone and how that affects things, because the design of This one is actually pretty unique. It looks like a whoop at first glance, it’s the same size as a whoop. It’S got 31 millimeter whoop props. But if you look underneath, you can see that it’s, actually a carbon fiber drone, the guards that protect the props are not even structural. I think you could even cut those off and then it would be a little bit more like a tiny, tiny little toothpick drum, but does it fly like a toothpick with prop guards, or does it fly more like a whoop or maybe somewhere in between to help Answer those questions i’m, going to show you some flight footage. I did some outdoor acro in my backyard and also some indoor racing footage right here in my basement and so i’m going to show you both of those we’re going to start with the indoor footage. I set up a track and i had a lot of fun with it. I’Ll keep talking while this footage plays, and just so you know this 60 hertz footage was recorded using my immersion rc power play dvr um, not the dvr in my goggles and the audio that you’re hearing of the motor sounds that was recorded from a stationary microphone.
I don’t know if you noticed, but this flight started out at around 4.2 volts. So i guess i did not hp charge this particular battery, but it quickly dropped to 3.9 and after that it was quite steady even going through the hard turns and everything uh it linearly decreased throughout the flight and that’s good. That is what you want to see, and i attribute that to good quality batteries and also the gmb 27 connector that’s on the batteries more on that in just a minute. Now there are crashes in this video. I wanted to be sure to include that, because this drone doesn’t always survive crashes very well, but it can survive sometimes, and you can see that successfully recover uh multiple times in this particular video clip as you can see, it’s pretty fast i’m, not even using full Throttle you can see the throttle percentage right here in the lower right hand corner, so it could go even faster than this, and it also handles quite well in the turns. So performance is definitely one of the strengths of this drone. I don’t think it would be my first choice for competitive racing, but i think you could use it for that in the hands of a skilled pilot. I think this drone could definitely win some races. I also want to say i just really love these cube gates from tiny whoop. They fold up into a round package, and then they just spring out.
You can set them up and tear them down in literally seconds and there’s. So many different ways that you can set them up and different paths that you can take through them. You can even unzip them and create side by side gates like i’ve done here or vertical ladder, they’re just really flexible. I should have bought these a long time ago here. It is up close again and it really is a nice looking drone, but unfortunately, the problem with flying it that fast inside the house is that these guards are actually quite soft. They are much more flexible than would be typical on a loop frame, and so they deform and as they deform they take the impact and they transfer it to the prop. And so it depends on the orientation of the prop. Sometimes you’ll get away with it and sometimes it’ll end up bending the prop and then you’ll try to take off you’ll, hear it buzzing and you’ll get a lot of vibration in your fpv and then you’re gon na have to go fix it and replace that prop. On the first day, when i flew this drone, i flew four different batteries and i broke four different props. I was so frustrated. I just couldn’t believe it i didn’t even want to fly it anymore. I put it down and started flying one of my other loops. You see to me uh, the durability of a whoop is really an important part of it.
To me, the thing that makes whoops so great is that you can fly them pretty much. However, you want and it’s carefree you ought to be able to fly throughout the house. You ought to be able to push yourself and go fast and not really worry about it. You have to be able to make mistakes and crash and just keep on flying and bring it back to your seat at the end of the battery and to me, that is just a really important part of what it means to fly. A loop inside of the house and so breaking that many props was really quite frustrating. Unfortunately, i don’t have the dvr footage from that first day of flying, or i would show it to you. It really seems pretty random whether it will break a prop or not. It just depends on how it hits and the orientation of the props at the time, and it doesn’t have to be a big crash. I remember one i was coming up to one of these beta fpv gates. I hit this soft part of the gate right here. Tumbled across the ground and i went to go pick it up and it had a bend problem, and i just couldn’t believe it to put that in perspective. I fly loops in the house pretty often uh in the evenings whenever i can it’s just a fun way to relax, and i honestly cannot remember the last time i broke a prop.
It must have been months ago sure, when i was first getting into it, um the frames weren’t as strong back then i broke parts a lot, but recently i just have not been breaking props. This is a drone that i’ve been flying around a lot. It’S 18.6 grams it’s got the meteor 65 frame and a tpu canopy. I showed this in a recent video. You could check that out. If you haven’t seen it already i’ll put a link down below, but this thing is almost indestructible: i’ve crashed this thing so hard. So many times – and i have never broken it and i’ve never broken uh one of these props. If anything is going to break on this it’s going to be one of these little spokes, but you can keep flying with a broken spoke and then glue it later and it’s. Not that big of a deal. Compare that to this thing, four flights and four broken crops. That was super frustrating. I saved some of the props, so i could show you these red props are the emax props that come with the drone? You can see this one. This blade got bent back a little bit this one. It looks like a blade got bent forward a little bit this one. I honestly cannot see anything wrong with this, but after a crash i was getting a lot of vibration. In my camera, i swapped out the props one at a time, and this turned out to be the bad one.
After replacing this prop, everything was fine again so again, even the smallest change on these props can mess things up. One point i switched also to this different prop: this is the jim fan, three blade props and i wanted to see if these would do any better and this broke on the very first flight that was pretty disappointing. I should also mention that the nanohawk came with a betta flight tune. I tried it out. It was fine. I didn’t have a problem with that tune, but i have a tune that i like for emu flight using dual axis: steering it’s based on project mockingbird, and it just feels really good flying through the house and so that’s. What i used in the footage that you saw if you want to know how to make your whoop fly and steer like this one then again check out the video for this drone. I went to all the details about dual access, steering in that video and again i’ll put a link down in the video description. All right now, let’s switch gears and talk about outdoor flight whoops, sometimes struggle at higher speed in that outdoor flight and there’s. A couple of reasons for that one is that the frames tend to flex under high load and that flex interferes with the flight dynamics. You get kind of delayed oscillations happening and betaflight really doesn’t like that, so that’s one of the problems. The other problem is that these guards end up creating quite a bit of drag and they really have kind of a detrimental effect on the aerodynamics of the air that’s, trying to spin off the edges of the wingtips.
And so this one actually has a much stiffer core because of the carbon fiber, and these ducts are actually they’re, not ducts at all they’re, just kind of guards and they’re just kind of scooped a little bit they’re thin they’re angled. They come down lower over here. So there’s a possibility that this could actually have significantly better performance at that higher speed, and i was definitely curious to find out – and so i took this in the backyard i pushed it pretty hard. I took some chances with this and that’s what i want to show you now and stick around after the flight footage, because i want to tell you a few more things about this drone and about the batteries and connector before we wrap up all right. I am in the backyard it’s starting to rain, just a little bit uh, but it rains a lot here. I just got ta fly so we’re gon na see how well this thing can do in the relatively confined spaces of my Music backyard: Music, Music, so Music, Music, me, Music, Music, Music, all right, let’s check it out back on the bench. Let’S talk about the batteries and connectors for just a minute. The drone comes with these flat 300 milli power, 1s batteries, they’re hv rated, and they seem like pretty good batteries and they also come with this connector it’s, a black connector. It looks like this on the two different ends, and this is the new gnb 27 connector.
This was developed by gnb to replace the ph2, which has been kind of the standard connector for a long time. Beta fpv also developed the bt 2.0 connector to do the same thing, and so now we’ve got three different competing standards and whether or not having the gmb connector on the drone is good for you is going to depend on what you want and whether or not You’Ve already got a bunch of batteries for some people, it’s going to be an upgrade for some people, it’s going to be kind of an annoyance to not be able to use the batteries that you already have. It only comes with one battery, but it does come with two of these adapters, and this is important for charging. It lets. You charge the battery in any kind of charger that uses ph2, which is pretty much any loop charger on the market and they even include a cheapo little usb charger to get you started. If you buy more of these batteries, i do suggest you get more of these adapters, though, because you’re going to want to be able to charge more than two batteries at once. The drone weighs uh 20.7 20.8 grams battery is about 8.9 grams. Put it all together and you’re, looking at a flying weight, just under 30 grams using one of these batteries, i’ve been getting three to three and a half minutes of indoor racing, like the footage that you saw and for outdoor freestyle, i would say three minutes is The absolute max i’ve been getting more like two to three minutes: pushing it harder outside with one of these batteries.
I’Ve been putting the batteries in oriented like this, so the two plugs can just come together on the side, that’s, actually the front of the drone. But what i find is it doesn’t lie flat on those. Unless you really kind of force the wires down a little bit and then you can get it to lie flat to take it out. You can see there are these little bumps on the ends of the controller and you could pull it apart this way, but it’s actually really hard to do and it’s going to dig into your finger. It does not feel good, so what i suggest is, i suggest you take the battery out. First, like this grab the flat ends of the connectors, and then you can kind of wiggle it apart. This way, those connectors are really really tight and normally i would consider that a good thing. I don’t think these connectors are ever going to come. Undone in a flight, even if it was dangling by the connector, i don’t think the battery would come undone. I think it might actually be too tight, it’s kind of awkward to get those unplugged. Now again, the point of this connector is to deliver more current with less voltage sag, and i think it is successful in that and yes, beta fpv also has a connector, the bt 2.0 connector. It accomplishes exactly the same purpose, so the connectors are pretty similar in that respect. Uh people complain about the bt 2.
0, sometimes because it is actually possible to stick it in the wrong way. If you really kind of force it and that could fry your board, whereas the gmb connector you can’t, really do that there’s a tab inside the connector, so that’s good, but otherwise they’re pretty similar. Unfortunately, it just means that now there’s even more standards competing with each other, which fragments the battery market and so that’s, not really great in and of itself it’ll, be interesting to see who wins out in the long run. Now gmb is a big manufacturer of batteries. If they can get a bunch of other companies siding with them with this connector, then they might be able to push it through. It might become more standard in the future, but only time will tell while we’re on the topic of the connector. There is also one problem that i unfortunately have to report. I have five of these batteries total and on one of them the connector is bad. I have verified that the battery is okay, the wiring is okay, the wiring all the way up to the connector is fine, but somewhere inside the connector. There is a bad connection, and i can’t see why. But if i plug it into this balance board for 1s batteries here there’s a little light here that comes on when it has connection. You see that if i put pressure on it, the light will come on. If i pressure goes off, the light will go off.
I first found out about this because i plugged it in it was okay. I took off, i flew across the room and then my video went to pure static and the drone fell out of the sky and i went investigated and the problem is definitely this connector. So hopefully this is a fluke. I don’t see anything wrong with the connector, but there’s definitely nothing wrong with the battery. So hopefully this is not a common problem with the gmb27 connector, okay, two more quick things before we wrap up. I want to mention the video transmitter and the camera the video transmitter you can see right in here. That is not part of the flight controller it’s. A separate board connected with header pins, and the thing you need to know about this vtx, is that you can control it with smart audio. It starts out at f4, that’s, 5800 megahertz, and the first thing i did when i was setting up this drone is, i tried to switch it to raceband one that’s. What a lot of my drones are set to right now, uh and i changed it to raceband and instantly my video went to pure static. Not only was it not on wristband one, it wasn’t on any channel the video transmitter just turned off. I literally had no video and since i had changed it using the on screen osd, it meant that i couldn’t even change it back. I was just completely stuck with no video until i connected it by usb to the computer in betaflight, using the vtx tab or in the cli.
You can change the channel directly and i had to do that to change it back to f4, and then it worked perfectly so i don’t know if mine is flawed. As far as i know, none of them support raceband, and that is something to be aware of the fact that you can select race band and then you can’t go back. That is pretty annoying there’s a button on here. You think that might be able to change the channel, but as far as i could tell it does not you push the button and it simply lights up some lights. To tell you what the current banded channel is and then this is the camera it’s, the runcam nano 3. You can see how it’s mounted in the canopy it’s a fixed angle. You cannot adjust the angle, but the mounting seems to be pretty solid. This camera is okay, but it’s not great. The run. Cam 3 was a great camera. When it first came out, it had a different lens with a much wider field of view. Then i guess they had supply problems with that they switched to this lens and it has a more narrow field of view in its current state. I think it’s a decent camera for something like a toothpick flying around outside you don’t need it to be as wide but for flying inside the house, especially through those gates. Having a really wide field of view is just super helpful for seeing a perspective of what’s around you, and it just makes you feel fast, which is awesome, here’s a comparison between this runcam nano 3 and the tiny whoop pinch which i have on this other drone.
It has a much wider field of view, and you can see how much of a difference it makes all right. In conclusion, i just want to say i really do appreciate what emacs has done with this drone they’ve obviously put a lot of thought into this and they’re trying to innovate in a crowded market segment, and so i really do appreciate that, and i hope they keep It up so kudos to emacs for doing that, but is this going to be the right drone for you well that’s, actually kind of a tricky question and it depends on what you want if you are a beginner if you’re looking at this as your first time, Drone then i have to say i don’t think this is going to be the best fit. I think you would be better served by something more durable that you can bash around, especially inside the house, without breaking the props and just keep on flying something like a meteor, 65 or a mobilistic. Something like that, i think, would serve you better, even though on the package it says, beginner indoor, nano racing drive so they’re marketing this as a beginner drone, but i really don’t think it is. I think this is a high performance drone, but it is not very durable. So what about competitive racing? Unfortunately, i don’t think this would be my top choice either. I personally like to use smaller 250 size batteries, and i don’t have any batteries like that with the new connector and also i prefer to have a wider camera angle and more up tilt and durability matters in racing, too sure, if you crash, maybe you’re not going To win anyway, but maybe you are even in the highest level competitions people get nervous, people make mistakes, people push themselves really hard, and so mistakes do happen and the ability to recover and get across that finish line can absolutely change the outcome of a race, even In really high level races, and so i really don’t think it’s the ideal drone for that either.
Although, like i said at the beginning, i do think it could win if you don’t crash it. So what does that leave? I think it leaves the outdoor more kind of freestyle flying and it is really good at that. It was super fun in my backyard. Does it fly as well as something like a three inch 1s baby tooth? No, it does not. The props are just so small, but the drone is tiny, and so, if you were looking for something really small really inconspicuous uh nobody’s gon na see this and think that it looks dangerous it just. It looks like a little bug if anything, and so if that is appealing to you flying around in your backyard or something like that, i think you could have a lot of fun with this drone as well. Just you know be prepared with extra props, because you are going to break those props. In fact, you might even consider cutting off these guards. You could cut them off completely and just use the carbon fiber part and have it be more like a toothpick and that would even fly better. In fact, it looks to me, like you, could actually remove the entire canopy and find a different way to mount this camera. And if you did that you could actually put 40 millimeter props on this drone and it would be the same basic size. But with bigger props – and i have not done that myself, but i think that would actually be really interesting – i might do that in the future i’m curious to know if any of you have done that alright that’s it for the emacs nanohawk.
I hope this has been interesting for you. I think it’s interesting, just looking at the different drones and different features and how they affect durability and performance and all those things. Hopefully, you do too, hopefully i’ve, given you some good information. If you’re looking for this drone or any of the other things that i’ve shown in this video i’ll try to put some links down in the video description text, but they are not affiliate links or anything i’m, not trying to sell you anything i’m, not trying to Make any money on this! For me, this is just my hobby it’s, something that i do because i enjoy it and because i enjoy being able to bring good information to you guys in the community, and so, if that’s, something you appreciate, uh, you could. Let me know by hitting that, like button down below uh, that would be nice and, of course, you can subscribe and hit the bell. If you want to see more stuff, i do have more content coming in the near future, so you can look forward to that.