The Beautiful Radiomaster T16S

In FPV, the year 2019 was ruled by the Jumper T16.

The T16 finally represented a viable alternative to Frsky, a goliath RC company which had dominated the hobby grade radio market for years. The Jumper was a full-sized radio, running OpenTx, that could bind to almost anything. It even looked good, and the price was more than fair. In the same year, Frsky had announced and started to roll out a new protocol, ACCESS, much to the dismay of many in FPV.

All of this added up to many pilots putting down their Frsky radios and never picking them back up again. Frsky finally had some competition, in a market that had otherwise become stagnant after years of their dominance.

The Jumper T16 radio was not infallible however.

There were questions over build quality at first, which then manifested into entire batches being shipped with incorrectly installed ribbon cables. We also saw issues with the Jumper TX firmware and some early adopters were plagued by a poor quality plastic scroll wheel.

A ribbon cable is only a small thing to get wrong, but it pointed to quality control issues and perhaps a product that was rushed to market. There was no doubt that the Jumper T16 was good, but there was always a feeling that it could be better. 

At some point in 2019, the people behind Jumper decided to part ways. The intellectual property of the T16 was shared and Radiomaster was born.

Flash forward to 2020 and the T16 is still widely sold and used in FPV. Frsky is drowning in their decision to develop a proprietary receiver protocol and the market has been blown wide open for new suppliers. 

It is now May, 2020. The T16S is being shipped and it seems Radiomaster have taken the original idea for the T16 delivered a radio that comes as close to perfection as possible.

Gone are the cursed ribbon cables, gone is the dodgy plastic roller, replaced instead with good old fashioned soldered wires and a beautiful metal roller. Such small changes represent how much thought and care went into Radiomasters development of the T16s.

When we directly compare the T16s to the Jumper T16 it is easy to see that they stripped everything down to redesign it from the ground up.  There is a larger battery bay, Type C charging, proper quality gimbals, larger hand grips and it even looks better, with a sleek black finish.

The Radiomaster T16s is available at three different price points. You can buy the standard version for around $99usd and the upgraded version, which features a touch screen and hall sensor gimbals, for around $129usd. The third version comes with a Crossfire micro module, for long range flying, and can be found for around $200usd. 

If you are looking to upgrade, or are just getting into FPV, you could do a lot worse than the T16s. 

The Full spec Masterfire combo comes with the TBS Micro Crossfire module

For those of you interested in what the internals of Radiomaster look like, check out the link below:

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