The JJRC X12 is one among many powered toys made by JJRC, which is in China. If you check on their website, you will see that they bring a wide range of products in different categories. These include stint cars, RC helicopters, vehicle/drone/boat all rolled into a nice 3-in-1 remote controlled toy, RC intelligent robots and many more. Their line of drones is truly captivating for many adults. They include X7, X3P, H78GH78G, X9 and others.
Released in the last quarter of 2019, the JJRC X12 is a good buy for people that want to experience using a GPS camera drone. In many X12 reviews, they say that this drone is a Mavic Air lookalike. However, is its flight performance as good as that of the Air?
While no two drones can look and perform exactly the same way, consumer drones continue to mimic each other in features and flight functions. Of course, as this review progresses, we will see all these and more. Among some of the things that you should look forward to include a folding design, brushless motors, long battery time and many more. Keep reading!
JJRC X12 Features & Technical Details
If you read our JJRC X11 drone review, you will see that this drone manufacturer truly packs their drone with many features and flight functions. The JJRC X12 has good features although it has some downsides.
Design and build quality
The quadcopter looks quite like the Mavic Air. It looks sleek and well built. It is available in either black or white color. The white one is not entirely white. Rather, the top part is white while the bottom part is black. The propeller arms are black and white while the landing gear is white.
Being a foldable drone, it is backpack-friendly. You can pack it easily when traveling or when taking it to storage. When it is unfolded, it measures 7.5 by 6.9 by 2.8 inches. When you fold it, it measures 6.9 by 3.6 by 2.2 inches.
You can see that it is not a big drone and that makes it easy to travel with. It is slightly on the heavy side though because it weighs 437g. That means you have to register it with the FAA if you are in the USA since it is over 250g.
The material used in the construction of the hull is ABS plastic. Now, it may feel a bit thin to the touch, but this resilient type of plastic will last a long time. It will protect the delicate electronic parts in the interior.
Lastly on the design and build quality, remember that she comes with brushless motors. They offer a better flight performance and experience, and they make minimal noise.
This is a 4K camera drone. Today, the need to own an aerial camera has become one of the biggest reasons for getting a drone. However, you might have noted that the small quadcopters can have a 4K camera but they might not be able to capture 4K videos. They capture 4K images. Therefore, you should look forward to 1080P Videos from this drone.
Not only is the drone equipped with a HD camera, but it also comes with a 3-axis gimbal. The work of the gimbal is to stabilize the camera when the drone is in flight to keep the videos and images as distortion-free as possible. You can rely on the drone to take high quality footage all the time.
The X12 is FPV enabled. When you download the ENJOY FLY app, you can see what the drone can see as it flies. Today, FPV is an obvious feature for drones with camera.
Battery and flight time
The X12 comes with an 11.4V 2400mAh battery. This one can give you a flight time of 25 minutes. However, as we said, this drone does miss on some things and the battery time is one of them. It hardly goes beyond 20 minutes and if it does, it cannot exceed 22 minutes. Makes you really wonder why the manufacturer says 25 minutes.
The battery also takes a bit long to charge at 5 hours. That is too long if you will only get 25 minutes after waiting for 5 hours. However, there is an option to buy this drone with two or even three batteries for longer flight time.
Good range – 1200m remote control distance. Worth mentioning here is that the remote controller comes with a built-in rechargeable battery, with a capacity of 2600mAh. This beats having to buy AA or AAA batteries all the time as is common with other remote controllers. Apart from that, the remote controller is light in weight and it has a phone holder too, for your FPV experience.
JJRC X12 comes with all the important flight functions that we have come to expect from drones within this price range.
Here are some of them:
Dual GPS Module (GPS & GLONASS)
The GPS module is very important. The drone connects with the GPS in your smartphone thereby enhancing communication between the two. If it loses signal, or it fails to connect to GPS when you are flying it indoors, the optical flow sensor will make the flight possible. In addition to GPS, the drone also has two ultrasonic sensors on its belly. They enable the drone to hover steadily and hold its altitude when flying.
Automatic return home
When you need the drone to come back home, just press the return home key. If it has lost signal or the battery has run low, the return to home function engages automatically and the drone comes back home. This way, it is hard to lose your drone.
The drone locks onto you and it then follows you wherever you go. This hands-free function leaves your hands free to do other things while the drone follows you, capturing footage all the time.
In circle mode, this drone is going to fly around your point of interest, capturing video and photo footage all the time. You have to set the radius and height from which you want the drone to circle your point of interest.
To help beginners learn how to fly the JJRC X12 without too many risks, the quadcopter comes with a GeoFence. It is a 200-meter radius for horizontal flight and 120 meters for the vertical flight. After you have gained some experience flying it, you can unlock it and let her fly as far as she will go.
Also referred to as waypoint flight, you can have the drone fly along the route of your choosing and come back home to you on its own. Just open the map on the app and draw the route that you want the drone to follow. It will literally fly itself leaving you free to take the best videos and photos.
Short Summary of Feedback From Existing owners
Having the X12 as my first drone has been quite the learning experience for me. I am happy that I was able to figure out the one key takeoff and landing thing, and soon I had it in the air flying. Jason W.
As a drone reviewer, I like to get my hands on the actual product before I can say a word about it. I am happy with the JJRC X12 and I can assure you it gives good value for money. Pam L.
This drone shows nice FPV videos and images too. If you fly it on a calm day, you can capture very good footage. George T.
My heart jumped into my mouth once when I flew this drone out of sight. However, I recovered my wit fast enough to press the return home button and back she came. Samuel M.
The longest flight time I have been able to coax from this drone is 21 minutes. In any case, I never believe what marketers say, so I always take the said flight time with a pinch of salt. Allan Y.
JJRC X12 Pros
- Comes with default GeoFence to limit flight range and height for beginners
- Easy to learn how to fly from the manual
- No assemblage needed
- Folds intact so you don’t have to remove anything
- Remote controller has a rechargeable battery
- Accurate when hovering and stable in flight
- Automatic return home function is always so reassuring – to 2 meters
JJRC X12 Cons
- Quadcopter does not exactly give you 25 minutes of flight time
- It is too small, can’t do well in the slightest wind
Who Should Buy the JJRC X12
The question should be who shouldn’t buy this drone. It is a good quad for beginners and they can learn how it works fast. However, it is also not too boring for advanced users and this makes it a good catch for just about everyone. The color scheme is good, the material used is good and it comes with tens of flight functions. If you are the outdoorsy type, you will be totally sold to the auto tracking function. It leaves your hands free to do your thing on the beach, hiking trail or on the mountain as the drone flies itself.
Conclusion and Recommendation
Buying a drone costing more than $100 requires you to be keen enough so that you can get good value for money. Therefore, you need to know all the features that it comes with before you order it. You have seen everything about the JJRC X12 here. Now, there are a few tips to get you and your quadcopter started just right. To learn how it handles, fly it in the default mode, within the geofence. Later, you can unlock it and fly it farther, but be careful to choose a calm day without wind.