350 QX Evolution



Well the evolution of the Blade 350 QX has been quite rapid. On this page I'll try to review the past changes and future enhancments Horizon Hobby makes to the model. Please help me enhance this page. If you read something that is incorrect or can add to the discussion please eMail me.


The Blade 350 QX3 is discontinued by Horizon Hobby (Blade). The QX line has reached the product "End-of-Life".




Fall of 2013:


QX [BLH7880]

In the fall of 2013 Blade Heli came out with their 350 Quad to compete with the DJI Phantom and the Walkera X350. This was the 350 QX and it looked like a winner. It had all the features of the others but was priced competitively and had the support from Horizon Hobby behind it. However the 350 QX got off to a bad start. Right away problems were being reported of crashes from propeller failures. The plastic props were brittle and cracked easily. Many were either tightening them to tight or using Loctite which degraded the plastic. It only took about a month for HH to issue what are known as the "B" props as a fix. By this time many had moved to the C.N.C. prop adapters and 3rd party props as a solution. A 2nd negative concern voiced by some was the fact that the motors, ESC'es, and other components were proprietary. To which Hobby King later released compatible motors LINK.

The 350 QX only had 3 flight modes at the start, Smart, Stability, and Agility. It soon gained a reputation for being easy to fly and as a great sports flyer for the experienced pilots. I quickly decided this was the upgrade quad I wanted (I had flown and learned on a small SYMA X1) but since it was winter I decided to wait and see what developed when flying season came back around.


Spring of 2014:


QX FWv2.0 [BLH7880A]

It became apparent that the camera mounted below the body was causing interference with flight control (mostly GPS). Since Blade had promoted the 350 QX as a GoPro ready system a fix was needed. The quick fix was to move the GPS antenna from a top the center inside the body to out above the ESC on the rear right arm. This lengthened the distance from the camera mount. In addition to this a sheet of copper tape was included with the QX that was shaped to cover the GoPro case.

Along with addressing the GPS issue a new flight mode was added. This was called Firmware v2.0 and added Aerial Photography mode or AP Mode. This 4th flight mode was between Smart and Stability and it gave smoother flight.

This is the model I purchased, the 350 QX with FW v2.0. I think because of the timing (Spring) this model seem to become very popular. However some issues still remained. The QX had some range issues and many were still reporting flyaway's. I have experienced flyaway issues. Jeremy James of USdronerepair.com noted that the soldering of the main FC board was poorly done and very likely causing these issues.


Summer of 2014:


QX2 AP [BLH7900]

To my surprise a new QX was releases in just a few months, this being the QX2. This also became known as the QX2 AP as it included a gimbal and the C-GO 1 camera. And if that weren't enough the RTF package included the new DX4 radio and much simpler TX.

Another change with this model was the dedicated receiver board. Not only was the receiver moved off the main FC board and on to its own but 2 new antenna wires were attached. One would lie inside the body but the longer one extended down the landing gear leg. I have to believe this greatly helped with the range at which you can fly the QX2 at. Range is important to FPV fliers.

Later the QX2 was released without the gimbal and camera which was called the QX2 "base" model.


Blade announcement 11/13/2014:

QX3 [BLH8180]

The new 350 QX3 is available. The new C-Go2 camera (1080p/60fps) and gimbal look great. A new GPS antenna mast moves the antenna from the rear arm to above and further back of the body. Also a new PC interface will make calibrations and settings easier. Note that the basic setup only mentions Smart and AP modes, however Stability and Agility are still available but require additional setup steps. This new version sounds to be a logical extension of the current model and a welcome upgrade.

Does it strike any of you how this was rushed out before a number of the obvious questions were answered. Can you say Christmas sales. I'm already wondering what will be available by the time spring flying season arrives. I don't fly in the winter months, way to much snow here. No where to land.

This video is on how to switch flight modes on the QX3 using the DX4. Does it bother you that you have to toggle the switch so much. I wonder what a new switch costs? I'm looking at what the V3.0 firmware changes in my QX requiring DX6 programming.

Thinking of points of failure, doesn't that new GPS antenna mast look like something we'll all be replacing at some point?

Here is an overview of the new software interface. It's interesting that it is backward compatible to the 1st gen. QX. I'm checking that the small extension cable that fits the FC board socket is included in the $15 USB package. And I wonder what Steve means by calibrating the acceleratometer with the GUI is not the same as in flight procedure.


I'm still gathering info. on what the new Firmware V3.0 is all about. I'm concerned that upgrading my QX will then require changes to the programming on my DX6. If you can contribute a detailed "how to" for programming the DX6 for FW v3.0 please email me eMail. As much as I would like the PC GUI I'm not downgrading my DX6 to the level of the DX 4 and have to do the switch toggle 4 times to change modes.

HERE is a very good write up for installing V3.0 on your quad and the PC GUI. And a You
video LINK

Here are some related links, use with caution.
Updater utility with v2.0 Firmware. LINK
V3.0 Firmware download: LINK
Manual for the updater Cable. LINK

Here is the new GUI (PC interface): LINK

I've posted on the main page at the bottom of the Stagility section programming for the DX9 that supports firmware V3.0.

350 QX3 - DX6 programming for FW V3.0. More on programming on the main page in the Stagility section.

And here is how to bind the QX3 with the DX6.




Spring 2015 has come and it's time to fly again. OK, HH it's time to announce a new QX. Or at least newer firmware, maybe v3.1. Rumors, eMail me. I was kind of expecting something to be announced at the Toledo RC show. I guess that the Mach 25 FPV Racer was the Quad news from Blade LINK .

We are all waiting to hear what will be next for the 350 QX. If you follow the posts on my “Quad News” page you know that a lot of exciting technology is being put into quads and many aren’t as expensive as the QX. I think the 1st issue that needs to be addressed is the flyaway. This might be resolved by adding a second GPS and antenna or just a different/larger antenna. The 2nd issue is the frail plastic body. I would love to see a carbon fiber one. Since I don’t use my QX as a camera platform much you can see I’m not looking for a better gimbal or camera. I’m not sure why so much is being made of the 4K cameras. Few devices can show 4K video. But the forums are full of people having troubles with gimbals so attention needs to be put there.

So that's my wish list, I don't have 'follow me', 'waypoints', or some of the other things I'm seeing on other models. I believe that these features would get boring fast. But hey, Yuneec and 3D Robotics think they are important. I do like the ground sensors on the new DJI Phantom 3.

I follow the Yuneec site makers of the Q500 as they developed the 350 QX for Blade and anything new is likely to show up there first. The Q500+ was just announced and the Q500 Black w/4K camera will be out very soon. LINK

Well the Chroma has been announced so the big question now is what's the future of the 350 QX size line?

JohnCC on Helifreaks asked HH if the new Chroma was replacing the 350 QX and got this reply. "Thank you for contacting Horizon Hobby Sales. Eventually, the 350QX line will be phased out. We do not have a date on when that is. Typically parts support last a year after discontinuation of an item. This one may last longer as it was/is still very popular and so many out there that we have a good supply of parts right now. Tech support will remain as long as we are open for business. We still offer tech support on 20 year old radios for programming. Tech does not mean just warranty support as the warranty is just out of the box defects at date of purchase. That is all case by case basis as well. "

So reading this I'm trying to understand the message. Is the QX3 the last of the model line?



Blade Chroma (5/28/15)

Blade Chroma BnF Programming LINK

"It's as if the QX3 and the Q500 got together and had a child. More accurately I'd say that it's a Q500 pretending to look like a QX3 but with some bumped up specs (flight time and watch me modes) " rewen on RCgroups.com.

"Let's be honest. The reason why (the Chroma is not being well received) is because Chroma really doesn't bring anything "new" to the market, and it's expensive. It's like they did not even try to have a competitive edge against DJI or 3DR and merely cloned the Yuneec in a 350QX body. Overall: it's boring, and maybe not worth it."
JohnCC on HeliFreaks.com

"With the latest release (Chroma) from Horizon. I think it's still too pricey for a flimsy plastic frame. "
Cr@sh on RCgroups

FlyChroma.com     You
Video     KnowChroma.com

OK, 1st takes. It doesn't come out and say it but I'm assuming it's still a 350 size quad. You can get the Q500+ with lots of extras on eBay for less $$$ and as a larger quad it would be a more stable camera platform. I don't like the PROPRIETARY battery but do like the 30 minute flight time. So I have a great charger and Paraboard all setup for EC3 plugs not good. ( see charger update below ) The four pricing options LINK are interesting. Is 4K a good thing? How many devices do you have that can display 4K? The $999.99 option comes with the low value DX4. The base BNF would work with my DX6 but I wouldn't have the cool on screen telemetry of the ST10+. The motors are new and the props look a lot like the DJI self tightening type. It still has the funky GPS mast. Some comments already posted on the conventional 5.8GHz WiFi Video Link and that the DJI 3 and 3DR's Solo are using better systems. But then you would need something other than a phone or tablet to receive live video.

Blade Chroma Quadcopter – Review LINK

Yuneec Q500 and Chroma Basic Antenna Kit LINK get extended distance on both flight control and video feed from the ST10+ TX.

The Chroma is available in four different versions. 4K, 1080P, 3-axis gimbal GoPro and Fixed GoPro. LINK

Follow Me Mode
Your Built-In Copilot. The drone follows you at a distance and altitude you set so you can focus on lining up the perfect shot using the rudder and camera tilt controls.

  • Frees you to focus on lining up the perfect shot
  • Pan and tilt the camera while the drone follows
  • Drone follows at an altitude and distance you set

    Tracking Mode
    Be the Star of the Show. The drone will follow and keep the camera pointed at whoever is holding the ST-10+ controller. This is a great way to capture yourself in action when no one else is around to fly for you.

  • Drone follows and keeps the camera pointed at whoever holds the ST-10+ controller
  • Drone follows at an altitude and distance you set
  • Resume full control at any time

    30 Minutes of Flight Time!
    Yep, you heard us right! 30 minutes of flight time per charge with the include 11.1V 3S 5400mAh Lithium-Polymer flight pack. This will allow you to stay in the air longer to get the shots you are looking for. Fly further, fly longer, fly Chroma!


    Here you can see the size of the new Chroma. Notice that it is smaller than the 350 QX3.

    Horizon Hobby's Steve Petrotto explains how the Chroma Flight Pack ($119.99) can be charged on a standard Li-Po Charger and not just the included charger. For faster charge times or utilizing the Li-Po charger you already own is simple. All you need is the Flight Pack High-Current Charge Adapter (BLH8624) for the Chroma and you are set. So yes, it is a proprietary battery but it CAN be charged with a standard Li-Po Charger. LINK

    Q500, Blade Chroma, and Blade 350 at 9:19 side by side conparison.

    Chroma - ST10+ Overview

    Chroma Camera Drone - Unboxing & Phantom 3 SHOWDOWN!

    TOP 10 Features - Phantom 3 VS Chroma - PART 1

    TOP 10 Features - Phantom 3 VS Chroma - Part 2

    Chroma Drone - Compass Calibration, Complete Tutorial

    Chroma - SAFE+ The Best Aerial Filming Experience


    Blade Chroma BnF Programming

    Blade Chroma BnF Programming For Spektrum DX6g2 by Freechip

    Radio Programming - Chroma DX6

    Chroma Transmitter Setup (BNF) LINK

    Spektrum DX9 Programming For Blade Chroma BnF Paylist LINK by Freechip

    DX9 Programming For Blade Chroma BnF SPM file LINK by Freechip



    Yuneec Q500

    The Blade 350 QX was developed by the Yuneec company. It's always interesting to see what's going on at Yuneec. Currently they have their Q500 shown on their web site. LINK It is about $300 more than the QX3 and is being sold by HH. LINK And here is a good overview/review LINK. The new Q500+ is HERE . And the new Q500 4K HERE

    Just incase you need it here is a Yuneec contact.

    Tim Terrones
    Online Social Services - Yuneec USA, Inc.
    5555 Ontario Mills Parkway
    Ontario, CA 91764

    Yuneec Office numbers: 909-259-5113 or 855-284-8888
    Tech support crew:
    Ryan Kephart EXT 105 rkephart@yuneecusa.com
    Dylan Cerven Ext 145 dcerven@yuneecusa.com
    Chad Sackman Ext 144 csackman@yuneecusa.com
    US customer service email: cs@yuneecusa.com
    Yuneecs service centers Facebook


    Yuneec Typhoon Q500 4K Promo Video UHD

    Yuneec CEO Reveals Secret Weapon for Typhoon 4K Quadcopter



    Pre-flight checks

    Start, Flight & Landing

       Sylt Island (Ger) - Flight


    The series continues:
    Flight-Modes: Smart, Angle & Home - Tutorial    Video Link 

    Basic-Knowledge LiPo-Battery - Tutorial    Video Link 

    Handgrip for Gimbal and Cameral - Review    Video Link 

    Q500 and Radio pictures - by Ralfs (Ralph in English)    LINK 

    Yuneec Q500+ – Review