Written on: 08/03/2013 by Nec_V20 (9 reviews written)
I love computers (been a computer techie for 30 years), reading, shooting, chess but am always open to something new. In this case it was a radio controlled tank.
I have always liked RC vehicles but unless one was willing to spend a hell of a lot of money, they might do stuff, but they look incredibly scruffy and cheap and don't handle very well.
I was looking around the Internet and one article led to another until I stumbled upon an article about RC tanks. They did a lot of things and had a lot of moving parts (tracks, turret, gun) made sounds and had lights. However the first ones I looked at were either really gorgeous, and cost a fortune, or they were just two boxes stacked on top of each other which were able to more around independently.
There are a couple of shops locally that sell RC models and I saw a couple of tanks, but they were 1/16 scale and a bit too big and also the detail on them was pretty bad for my tastes. I saw other models in 1/32 but they were on the small side. There were a couple of non tanks in the 1/24 range and I considered them to be the right size for my taste.
Armed with this knowledge I refined my search to "1/24 RC Tank" and I got the result "VSTank Pro" among others. I looked at a few and researched what there was on the likes of YouTube about them and the more I looked the more impressed I was with them.
There are two basic versions. The Airsoft and the Infra-Red version. The Airsoft version (which I decided on) has a working Airsoft gun on it which shoots 6mm BBs. I have to say now that one should not use the BBs that come with the tank as they are 0,12g and not suited to the power of the gun.
One should instead get the heavier 0.2g BBs and if you don't want your gun to break then spend a bit more money getting quality ammo. The gun lobs the BBs to strike the wall at the back of my garden which is just over 25 yards. Indoors I have been struck by a few ricochets and they HURT (so wear glasses).
The gun itself has an on/off switch and on the controller one has to press two buttons to make the gun shoot even when the gun is turned on. This makes it safe indoors to drive it around if you have pets. This is a feature which is missing on other RC tanks equipped with an Airsoft gun (they may have an on/off switch but it will fire if one button is pressed accidentally and a BB can easily blind) and just highlights the attention to detail the company VSTank invests in their product.
The IR version has more sounds and can be used in conjunction with other IR tanks to have a battle. The sensor registers a strike when the IR beam of another tank hits it.
I decided to get the Leopard 2 because that was what my cousin commanded in the German Bundeswehr. I also really love the look of the tank.
The tank reacts very well to the controls and it has three forward speeds and one reverse. You can spin it on the spot (which is too fast to be realistic) or make it turn more naturally. The turret traverses around 330 degrees, and when shooting the gun there is a firing sound and also a recoil effect. It also has an engine noise. It has a good suspension and climbing over a thick phone directory is no problem.
In comparison to other RC tanks one major advantage of the VSTank Pro is that it uses ordinary AA batteries (eight in the tank and six in the remote control). I have loads of rechargeable batteries, so when the tank runs out of juice all I need to do is change them out and I am good to go again and can set the others to recharge (I use Sanyo Eneloop batteries which are IMHO the best there are out there). Other kinds use a battery pack which you have to then recharge before you can continue.
This might sound negative, but bear with me, I almost regret having to actually use this RC tank. The reason is that it is too nice looking to ding - the paintwork and detail on it is just amazing. Pictures just don't do it justice. You will just not see equivalent quality for the same price anywhere - either in looks OR functionality. And it just feels solid.
So if you are looking for an RC model tank that is not too big and not too small which has a lot of features and looks amazing and costs around $150 you just can't go wrong with the VSTank Pro series.
I really would like to say something to nit-pick this RC tank, but nothing occurs to me. When it arrived it was even better than I had imagined in both looks and functionality. If it cost three or four times as much then I would say that the movement or turning of the tank or the sound was unrealistic compared to a real tank, but that would really be unfair nit-picking at this price (about $150).
A friend of mine has an RC car and he said he could not understand why I had bought the tank. I had not told him the gun actually works and I fired a few of BBs at it before he realised what was going on and then I rolled my tank on top of his car and asked him to show me exactly how much faster his car was than my tank :)
A word of warning, there is a second series of the IR VSTank called the "VSTank Zero Edition". This tank is flimsy (OK it costs a bit over half the price of the Pro edition) and the paintwork and detail are totally inferior also you cannot raise or lower the cannon. You also cannot change out the crystal to put it onto a different band if you are wanting to have a tank battle with someone else. So make sure if you see a "bargain" out there it is not someone trying to sell you a Zero Edition version instead of the real thing.
I am in no way affiliated with either the company VSTank or any shop that sells RC models of any kind, I am merely a very happy customer.
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