What is the Best RC helicopter for outdoors?

Not all hobbyists are here for the toy-grade helis that most of us have seen in the mall or when someone gets started.

Some people are here for the thrill and emotion of flying an RC helicopter outdoors. This is because they know, or at least suspect that if it is for outdoors, then it must be big and powerful.

If you are under this assumption, I’m here to say you are right!

RC helicopters come in many forms and sizes, but the truth is that the bigger the helicopter, the more powerful the motors have to be. This is not a general rule but in most cases that is how it works.

With all this power, comes great responsibility, and of course, you can no longer fly in your living room because things could become messy.

Yet, if you are looking for the best RC helicopters for outdoors, I have to say that there is more than just the size or the power of the motors to check.

Also, this post will cover only electric RC helis, if you are looking for gas powered RC helicopters this is the article you want to read.

In a nutshell, here is a list of the top 5 best RC helicopters for outdoors that I want to talk about in this post.

As I previously mentioned, there are a few factors you want to consider when selecting your helicopter, and while I don’t want to make this an RC helicopter buying guide, I do see the need to give you some advice when choosing these.

While there are a lot of factors and questions to consider, I think it is enough if you at least check the following things.

Budget

Many people think (I was one of them) this hobby is very expensive. While there is some truth in that, it is only to a certain extent.

These days, you can start with RC helicopters with less than $50 dollars. Of course you’ll get a toy-grade device, yet this is enough for having fun and deciding if you want to go deeper into the hobby. 

For outdoors RC helicopters, the budget may be a bit higher, but you still don’t need to break the bank for that.

I would recommend to consider the budget not just for the helicopter, but for spare parts and extra batteries at least. 

There are certainly other things you can get, but that is the most essential. 

Spare Parts

Here is the truth: crashes will occur. You may think this only happens to beginner pilots but that is not true. 

In fact, these being outdoors RC helicopters, capable of 3D flight, the chances of crashing are higher. 

Sometimes it is just a matter of making a silly movement or slight change in direction and the whole thing is out of control. 

For those moments, you definitely want to have spare parts available, or your helicopter will be doomed to sit for a while.

Like I previously said, I would recommend getting the spare parts right when you get your RC helicopter.

Not only you’ll have them ready if you need them, but you’ll be able to get into the repair stage fast and move forward with your learning curve.

Reviews

Information is power, and that is why reading reviews about the models you are interested in makes a lot of sense to me.

I always recommend to my readers to check a lot of reviews. You can learn a lot from other people’s experience.

When reading reviews and comments, look not only for the good things, but dare to learn the bad and the ugly as well.

You must know there is no such thing as the perfect RC helicopter, as every single one of them is failable, but certain brands and gadgets really perform better than others. 

Read through comments and look for patterns. Also, be aware of fake reviews. I can’t tell you how to spot them, but once you read many you start to develop an eye to spot these.

The Best RC Helicopters for Outdoors Reviews

Before going fully into the reviews, I want to disclose that some of these models do not come with a transmitter or receiver, and you’ll need to get those separately before being able to fly these RC helicopters.

The models I’m listing here are top notch and you can’t go wrong with any of them.

I’m including both Blade and Align models, because I think these are the highest quality helis for outdoors you can get.

In my opinion, the best brand is Align, but these tend to be more expensive, yet as soon as you see how they are built, you realize these are supreme quality flying gadgets.

Please know the gadgets listed here are not ranked in any order. They are simply listed to present the reader several options. 

Blade 230 S V2 RTF RC Helicopter

Blade 230S

This is a fully assembled and RTF (Ready to Fly) RC helicopter that will give you an amazing time. 

This is a collective pitch RC heli, which means that the movement of the helicopter is controlled by changing the angle of the main rotor blades.

Collective pitch RC helis are very addictive. You’ll need a learning curve to master this Blade heli, but you’ll enjoy each step of the way.

This heli is capable of performing some great aerobatics and inverted flights. 

Blade is the owner of a stabilization technology called SAFE, which essentially improves the maneuverability of the helicopter. This system simplifies the flight and helps the pilot to learn to fly in a safer way.

The panic recovery mode is kind of a life saver in case things go out of control. Just push a button and the helicopter will level its altitude in no time. Very handy if you ask me, especially with a collective pitch RC helicopter like this.

If you are interested, there is a tool you can use to level your swashplate. 

Blade Nano S2 Ultra Micro RC Helicopter

Blade Nano S2

Here is a perfect example of what I said before. A small RC helicopter that appears to be for indoors use. Yet the power of its motors make it a good candidate for outdoors use, or at least, to use at a very open indoors space (like a gym or a big salon).

Going into the details of the heli, this is another collective pitch gadget with amazing aerobatic capabilities. It is very impressive given its size (about the same than the Syma 107G), but hey, you should not judge a book by its cover.

Being a Blade device, this little gadget comes with the SAFE and stabilization system that separates Blade from the rest of the brands.

This means you have more control and the learning curve of this gadget is smoother for the pilot. 

It features an altitude hold, which is provided by the SAFE technology as well. This is perfect to keep the heli hovering. 

This is an RTF heli, which means it comes with everything you need to make it fly out of the box. 

Once you start getting into more advanced helis, like this, it is rare to see RTF options available, but this is one, and it includes the transmitter.

The transmitter is a Spektrum DSMX 6-channel with a DSMX receiver. I have to say this transmitter may work with other helis you decide to get in the future, so this is also a long time investment as well. 

Align T-Rex 300X DOMINATOR RTF

Align 300X

This is an RTF RC helicopter and it is on the small size side of the Align helis. Probably the most interesting thing about it is the transmitter and receiver combo it comes with. An Align A10 TX and MiniA.BUS receiver.

The reason this is important is because the price tag of the whole package is not super high, and you get almost everything you need to fly right out of the box.

I say almost because there are two tools you still need to make sure your helicopter is in optimal shape before making it fly. 

A digital pitch gauge: to ensure you main rotor blades have the same pitch (angle of attack) and avoid vibration.

A swashplate leveler: which will ensure the swashplate is properly leveled and you’ll get zero pitch at ground level.

Failing to check these things will cause wear and potential damage to your RC helicopter. As I said, align helis are advanced gadgets that require real maintenance and attention. In my opinion, that is also part of the fun.

Other brands may not need this because the operation of their helis is not that precise, but align is at a whole different level when speaking about RC helicopters.

The helicopter is built with all the quality and standards align uses in their manufacturing process. Most parts are metallic and the main frame is made of carbon fiber.

Another interesting, important, and very useful asset you get with the package is a balance charger. This is essential for properly charging your battery.

Perhaps you know these Li-Po batteries are composed by several cells, in this case, the battery is a 3-cell package. Each cell needs to get equal charge or you risk to damage the battery, and that is where a balance charger comes handy.

These can be purchased separately but in this case you get one inside the box.

ALIGN T-REX 450LP RC Helicopter RTF

Align 450LP

This is another Ready To Fly RC helicopter from Align. Agan, the construction of this gadget is superb and the materials used to build it are strong and resistant but lightweight as well.

The T-Rex 450LP helicopter comes with a 10 channel transmitter, the receiver, the balance charger, and the battery included.

You still need to make sure your pitch and swashplate are balanced and leveled, but this is probably one of the most complete combos I was able to find.

r Trex T-rex 450 500 Helicopter

Needless to say that being an Align heli, you are getting pure quality.

ALIGN T-REX 500X Dominator BNF

Align 500X

We are now talking about one of the most popular and tested RC helicopters that even professional pilots use to compete.

The align T-Rex 500X models has been around since I can remember, and it is by far an amazing piece of engineering that will amaze anyone just by looking at it.

There is a lot to say about it, starting with the fact that most of its components are metallic. Its main frame is made of carbon fiber, making it super resistant but lightweight as well.

Continuing with the parts, you’ll find a lot of details in how this was made, and that is a good thing, especially for those serious about this hobby.

The motor used to power the T-Rex 500X is very powerful, so don’t confuse this gadget with a toy because it is far from that.

In this case, this particular model does not come with a transmitter, so it is a BNF (Bind N’ Fly) version of the gadget.

BNFs are popular when speaking about advanced gadgets since most transmitters are compatible with them, so it makes sense for a lower cost to not sell the transmitter in the package.

Having said this, you’ll need a compatible transmitter and receiver combo before being able to fly this version of the T-Rex 500X.

Besides this, there are additional things you’ll need to ensure your heli flies properly.

A Li-Po battery to power up your heli (6S Li-Po 2600 ~ 3300mAh is suggested by the manufacturer.).

A digital pitch gauge: to ensure you main rotor blades have the same pitch (angle of attack) and avoid vibration.

A swashplate leveler: which will ensure the swashplate is properly leveled and you’ll get zero pitch at ground level.

r Trex T-rex 450 500 Helicopter

Align is a brand established since a long time ago and they are at the very top of the brands that build these gadgets, so you won’t go wrong if you decide to move forward with an Align device. 

Final words about these RC helicopters for outdoors

First of all, I have to remind you that these are not toys, and you’ll be making a serious and potentially dangerous mistake if you decide to treat these helis as such.

Safety should be your primary concern when using these helis, and that is why I strongly recommend to use these gadgets only outdoors, where is easy to keep a distance between you and your helicopter.

Having said that, these helicopters are fun, lots of fun. I enjoy not only flying them but also storing them, assembling and disassembling them, repairing them, and even storing them.

I’ve said before this is a hobby within a hobby, and with good reason. I invite you now to choose the one that fits you best and start having fun with these amazing RC helicopters.

Leave a Comment