Radiomaster Zorro is a new compact FPV radio that checks all the boxes – including a reasonable price and may be the best gamepad-style radio for FPV.
When a company listens to customers, amazing things can happen. Case in point is the new Radiomaster Zorro, a new compact gamepad-style radio that appears to have almost all the features FPV pilots have been asking for.
Zorro is a compact gamepad-style radio. It looks a bit similar to a TBS Tango 2 with its roller wheel on the right side but features a large, backlit screen.
Zorro features more buttons and switches than any other gamepad-style radio I’ve seen.
|Supported frequencies||2.4 - 2.48 ghz|
|Supported protocols||Version 1: CC2500 module with Frsky D8, Flysky and other protocols|
Version 2: 4-in-1 module
Version 3: ExpressLRS 2.4
|Power output||CC2500 or 4-in-1: 20dbm|
ExpressLRS: unknown, TBD
|Module bay||Nano size|
|Gimbals||two full-size hall gimbals|
|LCD screen||backlit 128 x 64 monochrome|
|3-position switches||two (B, C)|
|2-position switches||two (E, F)|
|Momentary switches||two? (H, G)|
|Potentiometer dials||two (S1, S2)|
|Other switches||A and D - may be momentary switches|
|USB port||USB Type C|
|Charger||Built-in charger via USB Type C|
|Battery||two 18350 batteries; optional 2S power input|
|Dimensions||170 x 159 x 108mm|
Price and availability
- CC2500 ($79): a multiprotocol module that supports FrSky D8, FlySky and other protocols.
- 4-in-1 ($99): has a 4-in-1 multiprotocol module that supports all the protocols supported by CC2500 as well as some protocols used by toy-grade RC.
- ExpressLRS ($99): Built in ExpressLRS 2.4. The maximum output is not yet known.
- ExpressLRS Starter Kit ($139): same as ExpressLRS but includes two EP1 receivers (with antennas) and one EP2 receiver with ceramic antenna. This doesn’t really save anything compared to purchasing the EP1 or EP2 separately.
- CC2500 with TBS Crossfire Nano ($149): same as CC2500 but includes a TBS Crossfire Nano TX module.
Which one should you buy? (updated: January 11, 2022)
The best protocols right now for most people are ExpressLRS or Crossfire. Which Zorro should you get?
Option 1: Have It All. If you want maximum options for compatibility, the Zorro version I recommend getting is the CC2500 or 4-in-1. That’s because ExpressLRS develops extremely rapidly, adding significant features every few months. There’s a good chance that a year from now, there will probably be a receiver module for ExpressLRS that will have amazing features that you might not be able to use on the internal ExpressLRS receiver on this controller. The downside of this strategy is that you’ll have to buy an ExpressLRS module such as the Happymodel Slim ($37) or Slim Pro ($55).
Option 2: Save Now. If you would prefer to save money, then you can get the Zorro with built-in ExpressLRS. This saves you about $18 compared to a Zorro CC2500 with Happymodel Slim. In the future, if they create a new module that has features that aren’t available on the internal ExpressLRS receiver, then you’ll just have to buy that new module. The downsides of this strategy are that you won’t have compatibility with FrSky*, which is still the most common protocol as of Q1 2022, and you may end up with a redundant internal ExpressLRS receiver. *You can buy a TBS Multiprotocol Module for $60, but if you’re going to do that, you may as well get the CC2500 and buy an ExpressLRS module for much less.
Impressions (based on specs only)
The Radiomaster Zorro is not out yet, but on paper, it appears to have almost all features that FPV pilots could want, including the option for built-in support for ExpressLRS. There are still a few questions, such as the maximum power output of its ExpressLRS version, and its reliability. However, on paper, the Zorro looks like the best gamepad-style radio transmitter available at a surprisingly reasonable price. It’s probably the one I would get if I needed a radio and could wait until January 2022.