FPV has ruled the skies onboard drones for quite some time, but we haven’t seen it used much in ground vehicles… until now! Here we are taking a look at the ECX Barrage 4WD FPV Crawler, the only FPV Featured model in our our ‘budget friendly’ range. So let’s take a detail look as to whether it is a good use of technology or just a gimmick.
The Barrage 4WD FPV Crawler At A glance:
- A simplistic but fun design, available in green or grey
- Arrives Ready-To-Run
- Great build quality thanks to its Aluminium chassis
- A tiny but powerful motor
- Measures just 12cm x 23cm x 11cm
- Includes a built-in FPV camera with a receiver monitor
- Comes with a 220mAh NiMH Rechargeable Battery pack and a USB Charger
Unboxing – What’s Included?
When you receive this little RC Crawler it will come in a neatly packaged box covered with graphics and information. There is a clear acetate window in which you can view the car in all its pride and glory. As illustrated on the outside of the box, this car does come ready-to-run with everything you need. Even the AA Batteries required for the transmitter are included which is a warm welcome. Please note that it doesn’t include a micro SD Card, thus you will need to provide your own should you wish to record your journeys for review.
Included with the 4X4 Crawler is the transmitter, 4 x AA Batteries, 220mAh NiMH Rechargeable battery, USB Charger, Monitor and Micro USB Charging cable for the monitor.
Don’t be mistaken by the product photos on the website. They can be deceiving when it comes to the scale of the crawler. It is rather small compared to most other Crawlers on the market so be sure to check out the photos below to get an idea of the scale and also the dimensions mentioned at the start.
The Instruction Booklet
This isn’t an exciting feature but nevertheless an important one. Due to it being a bit of a different product with a new feature, you will be glad to know that the instruction booklet is really easy to understand and follow with clear diagrams.
The ECX 4X4 Crawler comes with two white LED headlights attached to the front of the shell. Whilst not designed to light your way through he night, they do bring the vehicle to life.
Transmitter and Receiver
The set comes with a ECX 2.4GHz 2-channel transmitter which has a rather small form factor but still serves its purpose. The build is all plastic which isn’t the most tactile, but it only has a running time of 10 minutes anyway so it’s not like you’re going to be racing for hours. The 4 AA batteries required are included which is a nice feature. There are the usual control dials on the top of the controller to adjust steering trim and throttle, etc. This communicates with a ECX Receiver mounted to the model, where the On/Off power switch is located.
Battery and Charging
So, the ECX 4X4 Barrage comes fully equipped with a 220mAh NiMH Rechargeable battery pack to power this little Crawler. I know what you are all thinking, 220 mAh is nothing! Especially when it has LED lights at the front and a power hungry FPV Camera to feed. That little battery pack provides approximately 10 minutes of run time on a full charge. When it is on the buggy, it is secured by two rubber bands which makes it super simple to get in and out, but it does make me question its durability.
To charge this battery use the included USB charging cable which you can plug into all of your standard USB phone chargers to give it some juice. To achieve a full charge will take approximately 2 hours from flat. The included charger has a red and green LED which is very handy for monitoring the charging process.
What is the Build quality like?
This ECX Barrage Crawler has a stamped aluminium chassis to which plastic parts are attached. This is a great feature for such a small model and a crucial design decision that boosts the durability of the smaller plastic parts. This paired with the high ground clearance and bouncy suspension means that you can roll this around corners and notice little damage apart from a few scuffs to the outer shell.
How good is the FPV Camera feature?
I’m sure if your reading this, it is because you want to know more about this FPV feature so here we go. It comes equipped with a 25mW micro FPV camera in the front grill of the shell. This transmits a wireless video feed to the included 4.3inch Receiver screen made by Spektrum.
When you get it, the display’s battery should have charge in it but if not, you can easily charge it using the included USB to Micro USB cable. Then just screw the antenna on top and turn it on. If your crawler is also turned on then you should receive a video feed straight away. Should you not, then refer to the instruction booklet and it will help guide you through the simple process of scanning to find the channel. We found the signal to be pretty good, even when driving in a different room with walls in the way it held up pretty well.
Don’t expect a super clean feed as the FPV camera is only small. The system doesn’t produce the highest video quality, but it is clear enough to see what’s going on. As expected, the further away you get from the receiver/monitor, the more interference there is likely to be, reducing the clarity of the picture. The receiver does have a DVR function to which you can record your video onto a micro SD card (not included) which is a cool little feature. Although due to the quality, we think it is more appropriate for live viewing on the monitor.
What We Like:
- Good build quality
- Comes Ready-To-Run
- Cool & simplistic Design in two different colours
- FPV feature with the receiver screen (a nice addition that definitely has room to grow)
What We Don’t Like:
- Tiny battery – with no option to upgrade really
Conclusion/Should you buy it?
In conclusion I would recommend this product as both a first RC Car or a bit of fun for the younger hobbyists. It doesn’t offer a fantastic driving experience as it is mainly deigned with the FPV purpose in mind so if you are used to better RC Models then you may be disappointed. But if you are looking for a gift then this would be perfect for someone who might like spying in other rooms or observing the garden from the sofa.
Where can you buy the Barrage 4X4 FPV Crawler?
You can purchase the ECX Barrage 4X4 FPV Crawler in green as seen in this blog or in grey on our website. Both of which come with Free UK delivery! Be sure to check out our other reviews and product information on the blog and as usual, if you have any questions then please comment below and we will get back to you as soon as we can.