Airtronics: end of an era

Airtronics: end of an era

Unfortunate news from a longtime U.S. Radio brand.
Here is the official release from Global Hobby: Sanwa is restructuring their business. It involves changes in product, sales, pricing, and other elements. Based on all of this, we have chosen to stop doing business with them as it doesn’t fit our business schedule. What this means is the unfortunate end to an era where the American branded ‘Airtronics’ will no longer exist.

While we were the U.S. service center for Airtronics branded items purchased in the U.S., we will continue to service those customers as long as we are able to. This is based on our inventory of replacement parts and what is considered to be worth economical repair. For some items, we are already unable to repair them. On other items, we could be able to repair them for a number of months still.

While Sanwa will continue to produce equipment, there will be many items that will still have the ‘Airtronics’ name on the label as it was co-branded Sanwa/Airtronics for all world markets including the U.S. We wish the new U.S. distributor of Sanwa the best of luck with his endeavors.

Updated: April 2, 2016 — 9:02 AM


  1. As a youngun learning rc with my dad. He could afford two brands of radio in the 80’s. One was ace and the other was airtronics. What a shame. I did all my learning on airtronics equipment. By by I suppose.

  2. Good riddance, Many years ago, I purchased a airtronics 8 channell radio and it was a piece of shit…

    1. You’s an idiot. I wish good riddance to you.

      1. I have been using Sanwa radios since I bought my first one in Iwakuni Japan in 1978 and still have that radio in perfect functioning order. It was an FM 6ch Helicopter “Black Custom”radio before anyone here in the US even knew FM existed in RC systems. In Japan Futaba was referred to as “Boroproportional” “Boro” meaning “junk” in Japanese” I have had at least 35 Airtronics radios over the years and not one bit of trouble with any one of them. Love them to this day and still buy them on eBay when I have a chance. Nowdays I convert many of them to 2.4 GHz FSSS modulation.

        1. Otto, Good shot!

          Any radio can turn into a POS. Its a matter of upkeep and good service. I’m with ya:)

        2. I have a airtronics radiant 6p / 6 h computer radio system that is complete with manual if you are interested in buying it

  3. Please keep us informed as to who might start to distribute “Airtronics”. Tom AMA # 676231

  4. Is this an April Fools joke?

  5. Sad to hear that Airtronics is shutting down its airplane controller product, I loved the product, probably one of its down side is its durability, and reliability.within the consumer market

  6. That’s all I have! What’s to do now?

  7. With all the new cheap radios out there others are going to feel the pressure, I stand solid behind brand name servos as the failure rate is extremely low but the prices are being challenged I remember when Hitec was considered a cheap radio system, and great radios (Kraft, Orbit) all gone once considered the best woops just showed my age.

  8. Been flying Airtronics over 20 years, very fine equipment. Sorry to hear of the separation
    of Global Hobby and Sanwa.

  9. Can’t say Airtronics was a great system but a good one. Still have mine!!

  10. I have been flying sanwa/airtronics since the early 70’s. I have owned every other brand of radio out there during that time. I will say that I NEVER had a glitch out of airtronics whereas I can’t say the same for all of the others. While the Airtronics transmitters are a bit flimsy, if taken care of they rate right up there with the best in my opinion. The demise of airtronics does not surprise me though because ever other brand has come out with very affordable receivers while airtronics has stuck with their high prices for receivers. Reliable clone receivers for other brands are readily available but not for airtronics. Too bad. My go-to radios are now my several futabas because i can buy very reliable clone receivers for them for about $20!

  11. Airtronics Airplane radios did the job, their bread and butter was the surface line, which consistantly performed ahead of the pack. Many races and Championships were won with Airtronics radios, receivers, and servos. Who can begin to tally the countless models saved by the innovative Spektrum modulation system that Airtronics rolled out with others, a system that did away with the inherrant danger of open AM/FM bands that routinely led to radio interference caused crashes. Thank you Airtronics.

  12. I did nt know that about Airtronics as I a MXS radio and still works even though it’s probably ten years old now, my Skektrum DX2E radio will not power the ESC in my Gary Finely hull w/ UL 1 Aquacraft gear, I put the the
    Atronics receiver in my boat it ran it just fine, My Spektrum was what was in the boat the last time I ran it, I even tried my brand new Spektrum radio Does nothing except run the rudder????

  13. Just stated back in the hobby. Can I get an Airtronics Quantum radio repaired/tuned??

  14. Flown Sanwa/Airtronics since early ’70s.

    Not outstanding on paper specs, but totally reliable and simple gear.

    I’ve gone to JR for my 72MHz stuff, and gulp! for 2.4GHz too.

    Goodbye old friend…..

    1. I am quite sure that Sanwa will be available here in the US again. The company is just too big to go away.

  15. Even today, some of the Airtronics radios are very sought after and fetch top dollar on eBay. The Vision SP transmitter is still at the top of the pyramid. I constantly have guys asking me to buy my Vision transmitters.

  16. I was just lucky enough to get my hands on two RD8000s and two RD6000 on eBay. They were all like new and got them for under $30 each. Two of them will be converted to 2.4GHz Corona FSSS. They work fantastic with that mod and are extremely economical.

  17. another AMERICAN company run out of business by cheap Chinese crap. who’s fault .. the people that step over dollars to pick up pennies .

    1. It was actually young Mr. Renaud who was inept and his father did not want to hand over control of the company to him. Sanwa is still at the top of the heap and will remain there elsewhere in the world.

  18. I have a Airtronics VG400 I want to convert(to start with) to the GHz system. Anyone out the have the definitive guide to doing that?

  19. I have been a long time user of Airtronics equipment for flying my F3B / F3F / F3J sailplanes . I currently still fly and have flown many of their radio systems such as the Vanguard, Attack am , Module , Quantum 8 , Vision , Infinity 1000 .. I sincerely hope that the Airtronics company can make a complete come back some day soon . They were a great asset to the rc community . I miss them .

  20. Back when I was still flying planes (late 80s-early 90s) Airtronics radios were the bomb! A lot of guys in the flying club liked Futaba radios, but I preferred Airtronics. It’s sad to see them go away…

  21. This company suffered the notorious curse of “Mismanagement of the second generation family owned business.” Sanwa is still up and running and very popular everywhere in the world but in the US.

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