If you haven't already, you will soon notice that FrSky has new logo and a new look. There are more than just cosmetic changes in the latest hardware landing with EU distributors though...
Yet another fundamental change has been released for the EU market - the EU LBT ('Listen Before Talk') firmware. Affected products include the X-Series receivers and Taranis X9D transmitters. Post-2015 EU firmwares and the newer 2016 EU LBT firmwares are not cross compatible; you will need to upgrade the firmware on your Taranis in order to bind to receivers with the newer EU LBT firmware.
So what do we need to know? Here is a quick run down of the pros and cons as a result of the changes:
- Both CPPM and SBUS output come as default with new X4R-SB receivers (selectable with jumper (now provided) during bind process)
- L12 support has returned meaning users will regain the ability to use the L9R receiver as a long range option (no need to upgrade your L9R's firmware)
- Stability and range have been improved over earlier EU firmwares released in 2015 (untested by HobbyRC although several community reports seem to support this)
- If you are running OpenTX, D8 support may be available to you (meaning compatiblity with the D4R-II receiver)
- Ensuring both your receivers and transmitter are running compatible firmware is another headache
- V-Series receivers are still not compatible with newer transmitter firmware
FrSky X4R-SB with the latest EU LBT firmware and updated branding
Identifying your transmitter's firmware
Understandably, you may be unsure which firmware your Taranis currently has installed. Simply head over to the model setup screen and scroll down to the internal RF mode setting - each firmware has different compatible protocols:
- D8, D16, LR12 - You have pre-2015/non-EU firmware compatible with D-Series, V-Series, X-Series and L-Series receivers. This firmware was the standard prior to 2015 and is still in use outside the EU.
- D16 - You have post-2015/EU firmware compatible with X-Series receivers. This firmware was released at the beginning of 2015 and was the first to conform to new EU regulations concerning RF transmission. You may also notice a small sticker on the reverse of your transmitter labelled 'EU 2015'.
- D16, LR12 - You have post-2016/EU LBT firmware compatible with X-Series and L-Series receivers. This is the latest firmware which is a progression of the post-2015/EU firmware but is not cross-compatible.
If you are still unsure which firmware you have, we are happy to help you find out.
FrSky Taranis X9D with the latest EU LBT firmware and information sticker on reverse
Of HobbyRC's FrSky product range, affected products include:
- X4R-SB Receivers
- X6R Receivers
- X8R Receivers
- Taranis X9D Transmitters
Optional Firmware Flashing Options:
If you don't fancy flashing your own receiver, HobbyRC offer a firmware flashing service at the point of sale. Available firmwares for the X4R-SB are:
- SBUS, CPPM + 2xPWM (EU LBT 2016) -- COMPATIBLE WITH NEW 2016 EU LBT TARANIS FIRMWARE (FLASHED AS STOCK/DEFAULT)
- SBUS, CPPM + 2xPWM (EU 2015)
- SBUS, CPPM + 2xPWM (NON-EU/GLOBAL)
Note that all the newer firmware available for the X4R-SB enable CPPM output (when pins 2+3 are jumpered at bind)
The new firmware can be downloaded from the FrSky website here: http://www.frsky-rc.com/download/view.php?sort=&down=217&file=EU%20LBT%20Firmware#