UpAir One v3 Review

After owning a few toy grade quads I have now got my hands on something different.
I got it via Banggood, prices vary almost daily, but normally prices are between €300,- and €360,-

The UpAir One v3!

After opening the box I was amazed by the size and weight of the quad.
The latest addition was the Hubsan H502E and this one is a lot bigger, and weighs 1 kilo more!
The build quality is not bad at all, and it doesn’t feel cheap at all.
The props are unbranded 9450 DJI props that also go on a Phantom 1,2 and 3

But the package is simple and complete.

  • The Upair
  • 1 charger for the quad battery
  • 1 charger for the controller battery
  • 1 3s 5400 Mah 10c Lipo for the quad
  • 1 3s 2200 Mah 8c lipo for the controller
  • 1 controller
  • 1 set propellers
  • 1 manual in Chinese and English

After charging the batteries I have assembled everything and powered it on.

First power on the controller,

There’s a 3 setting switch at the back.
First is off, the middle one is only controller on, and the last is controller and screen on.
The last one is of course the best one, but the middle one is actually very handy if you run short on power in the controller, you are still able to land it normally, only without FPV

Then power on the drone.

Powering on is not a straight forward push on the button.
You need to press the button for 1 second first, release it and then press it again to power on the system.
This looks to me as a sort of pre-flight check to make sure there’s enough juice in the battery.

the LED’s show the current amount of power in the battery.
every LED is 25%

After a few tri tone beeps you’ll here a longer single beep telling that the drone has stabilised itself and it is ready to go.
The gimbal has been activated as well, and is level.

What you can see straight away when you power up the controller is that the 7″ screen is not HD, in fact I think it’s only VGA.
the view is good, and it’s more than big enough to see everything you are doing.
There is also telemetry on screen.
It will show you things like battery voltage, connected satellites, travelled distance, highest altitude, current altitude, heading

The camera is a non detachable camera which is powered from the main battery. it’s mounted on a 2d gimbal which is also powered by the main battery.

The camera has a micro SD slot and a USB port.
The best card you can use is a class 10 card or better.

The USB port can be used to download pictures from the card to your PC/Laptop without removing the card.

The gimbal assembly is attached to the drone with 4 rubber dampers.
these dampers are there to reduce vibrations and gives a better picture without any jello at all.

The controller is a nice one.
it fits perfectly in your hand, and the controls are easily accessible.

The controller has 2 sticks to control the drone, and that’s the same for every drone, only the UpAir has no option to switch between mode 1 and 2, but that is fine with me.

There is also a wheel on the right hand top.
with this wheel you can adjust the angle of camera.

on the same side there is also a switch with 3 settings.

  1. Altitude Hold
  2. Position Hold
  3. Headless Mode

Altitude hold is exactly what it says, it keeps the drone at the same altitude using the barometer that is inside.
Although you will have a connection with satellites, it will not use them. so it will not stay in the same position if the wind plays with the drone.

Position Hold is basically GPS mode, that means that the drone will try to maintain it’s position when you release the sticks. it will swerve around a bit, but not more than 1 meter max.

Headless mode is a mode I have used once on my Syma, and I think it is useless. It basically makes the drone fly in the same way you put your sticks, regardless where the front of the drone is.

On the left you’ll have a video button, a photo button and another switch.

The switch has 2 settings.

  1. Normal mode
  2. Return to launch mode

In normal mode you can normally operate the drone, and use all functions.
when you activate RTL mode the drone will rise to 10 meters (if it is lower than that, otherwise it will maintain altitude) and it will fly back to the location the drone took off.
Beware of this when you decide to fly the drone and walk with it, RTL will make the drone fly back to the point you took it in the air, not where you are at the moment!
This function will also engage if your battery runs low!

The 2 buttons operate the photo and video functions.

pressing the photo button once will make 1 picture
pressing the video button will start video recording, and will be stopped when the button is pressed again.

The photo button can also be used to change the video settings on the drone.
Please see this video to see how this is done.

On the rear of the controller is also a hidden button.
If you experience problems with your live feed use the button to change channels. press and hold it for 5 seconds to activate channel search

Before you start to fly with the drone make sure you have a lock on GPS with at least 6 satellites. less than that could cause problems, and the drone might not even arm.

Calibration is not needed as the manufacturer says, if it is needed simply make a 360 degree left and right turn in altitude hold mode and it should be calibrated.

I was amazed by the little effort that is needed to fly the drone.
It handles very good, and is easy to see everything on the 7″display
All information is visible without disturbing the actual live feed.

The highest I went up was 130 meters, and the drone was still visible, and you still have a good live feed from the FPV. the wheel to adjust the camera is a great addition, you can move the camera up and down, you can even make a picture of everything below you.

The quality of the footage in general is stunning, especially knowing this drone is half the cost of a DJI

To sum it up, I think this is a great drone for the money.
You can buy many drones for this kind of money, but I think that it won’t get any better than this.
The handling is great, video/photo quality is great and range is great.

The only downside to me is that the battery only lasts a minute or 10-12 which is not long. and the quality of the screen could be better, although it is not bad at all for the money.

This great drone is available at Bangood

I also have the user manual on this site

And if you want to see more footage, look on this site, or click here