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Spektrum DX18QQ: First look at a UNIQUE radio!

Spektrum DX18QQ: First look at a UNIQUE radio!

We got an exclusive first look at the new Spektrum DX18QQ “Quique Somenzini Special Edition” radio, and we have to say that this is definitely the next system you will want to own. A limited edition item, it takes over the top spot in the Spektrum lineup and it has a number of key features that every pilot will appreciate. Our senior West Coast editor John Reid has had the very enjoyable job of testing this radio out for the past few weeks; find out what he has to say about the new features of the DX18QQ radio in the video below.  Be sure to read his exclusive review in the February issue of Model Airplane News!



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Once you open up the case you will find a transmitter that conforms to your hands very well. It has nice non-slip rubber grips on the backside that prevent your fingers from slipping off the transmitter.

Another new function is the use of “origin mixing” that can be accessed when the aileron, elevator or rudder are selected as the master channel. Origin mixing will use the true stick position as the input for a mix.

On the original DX18 the part of the transmitter that is bright shiny chrome is more of a brushed steel look on this one.

All of the toggle switches are now covered in soft rubber to prevent your fingers from slipping off them.




No. of channels: 10 (18 with X-Plus function and module)

Model Memory: 50

Modulation: DSM2 & DSMX

Band: 2.4GHz

Resolution: 2048 (for the first 12 channels using a 12-channel receiver)

Frame Rate: 11ms (supports 22ms)

Price: $ 1299.00 (System with AR12120 receiver & 8-channel X-Plus Module) Servos not included.


Up to 4-programmable curves that can be assigned to switch, knob or stick position.

The included 2-cell LiPo battery allows a full weekend of flying without the need for recharging.

The Pitch Curve Function that allows a variable pitch propeller to be used. Of course this function offers the pilot excellent refinement with up to 4-programmable curves that can be assigned to switch, knob or stick position.

The main display is simple and only includes the model number and name in the top left corner, the timer has large letters and is next to a large avatar image that IDs your current model selected.

Another convenience is the ability to assign in-flight gyro gain adjustment to one of the side levers, or right knob, or one of the auxiliary trim switches at the top of the transmitter faceplate.


Another specialized feature is being able to turn the throttle trim into a 3-position switch for turbine engine start up ease. Once set-up, the throttle goes from low to middle to high trim with each click.





Updated: July 15, 2015 — 4:22 PM
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  1. Let me say I love horizon products and their support is the best ever, but this sucks. Not because it’s a bad product but because it is so far out of the realm of the average person enjoying it. RC is not a cheap hobby and you get what you pay for but with all the hype I was hoping as I bet many others to get something unique. Again great looking radio and Quique Somenzini has made some of the best planes I have ever flown from the little beast to the new Stryker. Come on horizon if you are gonna tease us give us a chance of enjoying the outcome.

  2. Looks like Christmas is coming early this year! Lucky for me I have an understanding wife and family that will be happy to cross me off their shopping list early. I just hope they don’t make me wait until Xmas to open the box!!!

  3. Booooooooooo. What a complete waste of time. I guess I am unique, in that I would not and could not afford a limited edition 18 channel transmitter. Why didnt you just call the ad “nanner nanner boo boo I have more than you do”? What a great way to isolate your bread and butter market segment.

  4. I have a few of Quiqee’s planes and I love them. This radio is out of my price range but it really looks nice. I hope Spektrum
    takes this concept to make a special DX8 … that would be more my speed!!!

  5. when will the us companies realize we don’t want a high-end TX that feels like it should have come as a free prize in a box of crackerjacks? the same can be said for futaba, I don’t want a TX that looks and feels like it came from the MTV generation.

  6. WOOO-HOOO!!!! I just ordered mine! I love the way it looks and the prgramming looks AWESOME!!!!!!!

  7. Coming soon…. Futaba 18MZ, Frank Noll Edition…. only $4,599.00

  8. It is a great looking TX, and I’m sure it has all the programming you could ever need, and Horizon support is top notch, but all of the new spektrum tx’s feel like they should have been free with a bottle of CA….good idea’s from spektrum, poor execution. For me the reason to spend a grand+ on a good TX is so I don’t have something that feels like cheep china crap.

    It would also be cool if Model Airplane News didn’t turn into Fox News and let people post real comments, not just positive feedback talking about how great things are. If companies only hear hot air about how great there products are they will never make them any better. Just my 2 cents.

  9. I have owned Spectrum products for years……..do yourself a favor and leave the hype of this overrated, overmarketed BS line….. go buy an Aurora 9 and see, feel and touch quality that is priced for the average human being having fun with RC. I switched to this radio a few months back and am more than impressed by superb quality of craftsmanship. The Spectrum products are like a chinese toy in comparison.

  10. I own the DX18, and the release of the DX18QQ version is awesome and all, but I think keeping the programming exclusive is a bit much. Why not at least allow us to upgrade our software, even for a small fee? I am quite happy with my DX18 at the $799.99 price tag, but I am not feeling the $1199.99 price tag of this limited edition. I am a big Horizon supporter, but come on, really? your going to do this to us that had your top of the line transmitter, by way of releasing a limited edition, now making us previous DX18 owners a notch down from the top?? Not a good move, just start reading forums, and you will see a lot of DX18 owners upset over this, with no indication of a software upgrade for us.

  11. I think the world of QQ but what would really turn me on about this QQ version radio would be that after the 2000 special units run out, offer this radio as a “signature series” with MY name engraved on the front and MY signature on the display…… I think I’d feel like paying the extra money over the cost of a regular DX18 to own a special version. Spektrum would then have a double market to adress themselves to. Just a thought Horizon…. Make it happen!

    1. I totally agree, instead of the lettering on the top front that it has, put MY name there for a fee, then you would really have something. But still, its not the radio, but the pilot that has the skills. So for $400 more, it truly is just an “option” package.. and I look forward to seeing if Horizon offers the rest of its flagship owners the option to get at the very least a software upgrade, or maybe dream a lil bigger and offer an upgrade package to get the newer gimbals, rubber tipped switches, and software. Come on Horizon, make it happen!!

  12. Software is easy to change. I assume if the QQ software options are popular they will eventually be available for the DX18. It would be bad business to have an upgradeable radio like the DX18 and NOT allow those upgrades.

    As far as the $1200 vs $$800 price difference : this is soley a matter for folks who are fans of Quique to decide. They’ll be in that “unique” group who paid more for their radios, and they will look different. To me this is just a styling option package, like one might get for a sports car. Some options help performance, others just make the car look different.

    1. its not the radio, but the pilot that has the skills. So for $400 more, it truly is just an “option” package.. and I look forward to seeing if Horizon offers the rest of its flagship owners the option to get at the very least a software upgrade, or maybe dream a lil bigger and offer an upgrade package to get the newer gimbals, rubber tipped switches, and software. Come on Horizon, make it happen!!

  13. Agreed, a somewhat cool looking Transmitter, but I don’t think anyone with any brains is going to think you’re cooler for owning one. Use your brain, focus on being a better pilot. It’s not the Transmitter 😉

    Also, I would agree, the Spektrum radios have a very cheap feel and look, but the technology is there.

  14. So here is a suggestion for Horizon, for XX amount of dollars, offer the current flagship owners an upgrade package for the upgraded gimbals, rubber tipped switches, software, and the option to have the name plate changed over to one with my name on it. I’d pay for all that, and it would foster a deeper loyalty to the brand, by way of offering customization in this way.

  15. Sure hoping from all the negativity this release brought on, that they can sift through it all and see, the DX18 owners only want an update to their software, many features that have been asked for in the past, but are now being held as exclusive to the DX18QQ. Had they named it the DXQQ with 18 channels, guess we wouldnt be seeing such negativity, but as it is, they re-released the same product, with no offer of incentive to the current owners of the same product.

  16. I am soo tired of the media blitz on this radio. I understand that HH paid for the coverage but one more darn Facebook post on this thing and I will be removing MAN from my liked pages.

  17. I have owned Spektrum radios in the past and to this date I still own one. However I have to agree with the fact that it looks great but not for the price. Like others I also switched to Airtronics and to this date I am happy with my 10ch SD-10g.

  18. Well guys. I couldn’t believe it. I walked into my LHS and there it was sitting on the counter. Wasn’t looking for a transmitter, don’t need a transmitter, almost positive it’s not worth what they are asking for it……….but I just couldn’t help myself. The thing is just cool. I never even held a DX18 before and the package was sealed on this one so I couldn’t even look at it. But reading and watching videos on it….I pulled the trigger. Just do it

  19. First of all, let me address your poorly written article. This is not the radio to take the “top spot” in the line up. How can you say that when it is a limited edition? Its a brother to the DX18. They both share the same level in the line up. I have to say, when I read your recent article in the magazine I just got, I was not impressed with how it was written to say “if you want the best, then this is the radio you want” Showing you TOTALLY missed the point of the tribute it was paying to Quique. The QQ edition has some pre-canned mixes, that the DX18 can do if you mix them, otherwise they are the same radio. Its a $1199.99 value package, not a $1199.99 radio.

  20. Arent all these sold yet? I am tired of hearing about it.

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