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The Phantom Toothpick from GEPRC is an ultralight micro quad featuring a full carbon fibre frame, 16x16mm stack, 1103 motors and Caddx EOS2 camera.

We only just reviewed the Sailfly and Fullspeed Toothpick, which are also great options.

Banggood: http://bit.ly/phantom-toothpick

You can either get it without receiver, or with Frsky XM+. It’s a shame there is no other receiver options.

It comes with the following accessories:

  • 2 sets of props
  • RX antenna tubes
  • 2 battery straps
  • Sticky battery pad (for top plate)
  • Foam tape (landing gear?)
  • Allen key (works with all the bolts on this model)

  • F4 FC
  • 12A BLHeli_S 4in1 ESC
  • GEPRC GEP-GR1103 8000KV
  • Frame size 125mm
  • Propellers: 65mm or 2.5inch
  • 200mW VTX
  • Caddx EOS2 FPV camera
  • Weight: 51g 55g (without battery)

GEPRC claimed the weight is only 51g without battery on their product page, but my measurement turned out to be over 55g. Maybe they didn’t take into account the props and RX antenna tubes.

It is one of the heaviest toothpick I’ve flown. But taking into account all the features: 1103 motors, buzzer, diversity receiver (XM+), current sensor, full carbon fibre frame… it’s not hard to understand why it’s so heavy.

The frame supports 65mm and 2.5inch propellers on GR1103 8000kv motors. The build can either run on a 2S 450mah or 3S 300mah LiPo.

Get some 3S 300mAh LiPo here: https://amzn.to/2G15dDE

Inside the 16x16mm stack there are the 200mW VTX, F4 FC and 12A 4in1 ESC. Interestingly, this stack looks much like the iFlight SucceX (http://bit.ly/32cmmnr). Maybe it’s just a rebrand?

I am glad it has a dedicated FPV camera, the Caddx EOS2. Although it’s not my favourite, but still better than those AIO cameras. It’s in PAL mode with 4:3 aspect ratio.

It comes with a 3D printed TPU holder and plastic tubes for mounting the RX antennas. That’s a very neat solution, but you could probably shave a couple of grams off using zipties and heatshrink to mount the RX antenna.

By default, the Phantom Toothpick runs “Props In” config (normal propeller rotation).

One thing that makes the GEPRC Phantom stand out for me is the battery placement. It’s one of the very few toothpicks that you put the battery on top. I like having the battery on top as it makes the control feel tighter and more responsive by moving the centre of gravity closer to the props.

The arms are  2mm thick and it’s a unibody design. If you break one arm you will have to replace the whole bottom plate. Due to the slightly heavy weight, impact is going to be larger when you crash, so I am not too confident about the skinny arms.

Here is the stack which consists of 3 boards: VTX, FC and 4in1 ESC. Between the boards there are rubber standoffs for soft mounting.

There is a 330uF 25V capacitor soldered directly to the XT30 pads for noise reduction.

As you can see, it’s a really clean stack. You don’t see any wires because the three boards are inter-connected with tiny header pins. At first I didn’t think it’s a good idea because it defeats the purpose of having rubber standoffs for soft-mounting. But I didn’t see much oscillations in flight so it must not be that big of a problem.

The specs of the VTX:

  • Optional Power level: PIT/25/100/200mW
  • Antenna Connector: IPEX (U.FL)
  • VTX Control: Tramp
  • Size: 17x27mm
  • Mounting holes: 16x16mm
  • Integrated LC Filter
  • Weight: 1.6g

The specs of the FC

  • MCU: STM32F411
  • IMU: MPU6000
  • BetaFlight OSD
  • BEC Output: [email protected]
  • Size: 21x21mm
  • Mounting holes: 16x16mm
  • Integrated LC Filter
  • Input voltage 2S – 4S LIPO
  • Firmware target: MATEKF411
  • Weight: 2.5g

Specs of the 4in1 ESC

  • MCU: BB21F16G
  • Continuous current: 12A (per motor)
  • Input voltage : 2S – 4S LIPO
  • ESC protocol: PWM, Oneshot125, Multishot, Dshot150, DShot300, DShot600
  • Size: 23x21mm
  • Mounting hole 16x16mm
  • Firmware target: Blheli_S G_H_30
  • Current Meter: 210
  • Weight: 2.7g

Here is a side by side comparison to another popular, more affordable option, the Sailfly.

The width (left to right) is similar but the length (front to back) is longer for the Phantom.

Note that USB cable does not power up the RX, nor the FPV setup. To test the FPV setup and binding RX you will have to plug in the battery.

Firstly you need to bind the receiver. With the Frsky XM+, you should select D16 on the Taranis (connect LiPo to power up RX).

The flight controller comes with Betaflight firmware 3.5.7 pre-flashed. You can update it, but I didn’t and it worked just fine. (FC target is MATEKF411)

Ports are already setup with Tramp Telemetry on UART1 (so you can change VTX settings using Betaflight OSD), and Serial_RX on UART 2.

Next setup modes (switches) for arming, angle mode and beeper. That’s pretty much all the settings in Betaflight.

It’s connected to the VTX with the fragile U.FL connector, it’s going to pop off in a crash and in the long run it’s going to damage the connector. As a work around, just use a couple of zipties like I did here to secure the VTX dipole antenna, it also helps to keep the antenna at an optimal angle.

I didn’t need to change PID or filter settings and it flew very well out of the box. I only needed to change rates and expo.

Overall, I recommend it

I think the GepRC Phantom is an excellent option as your first toothpick. The Happymodel Sailfly is still the best in terms of value in my opinion, but if you have the budget, I’d get the Phantom instead because the better hardware and features. Range is nearly doubled as well.

Setting up was super easy, no soldering or tweaking, just bind it and setup a few things in Betaflight, and you are good to go!

Any Downsides?

However if you are looking for raw power and speed, there are better options, mostly due to weight. The Phantom Toothpick is nearly 18 grams heavier than the Sailfly, which is consider significant in this class. You can definitely feel that extra weight during flight. With that said, the performance is still decent and fun to fly, you just have to use smaller battery to keep the total weight down.

I really like the hardware, especially the 16x16mm stack, top notch design and quality, and it’s been reliable for me. Another thing I don’t quite like is the frame. Although I do like how it looks (the similar design to a 5″ frame), and it’s really easy to work with, it’s a bit too heavy. And I think it needs stronger arm design as well (note that I haven’t broken it yet, it’s just a feeling).

What Battery to Use?

I mentioned in my last review that the Sailfly flies pretty well even with 2S (because it is only 35 grams), for the Phantom I really do think 3S is a must despite having the same KV motors. I recommend 3S 300mAh LiPo battery, so that the AUW comes to about 80g.

Get some 3S 300mAh LiPo here: https://amzn.to/2G15dDE

There is another version with 5500KV motors that takes 4S batteries (though I couldn’t find out where you can buy this). I wouldn’t run 4S on the 8000KV version, as the motors can already get warm on 2S.

Buy the GEPRC Phantom here: http://bit.ly/phantom-toothpick




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