Tadpole HD 3

By Flip_FPV on Jun 21, 2022

5  410  2

UPDATE 06/26/24:
I still love this quad and fly it a lot but the Xing2 1404 motors have let me down. I have about five or six of them that just started twitching after crashes. No broken wires that I can see so I have to assume the wires are breaking somewhere in the windings or something. IDK. I've been replacing the bad ones with the older 1404 camo motors, which have been nearly bulletproof for years with continued abuse.

The other thing is the bottom plate is not durable enough and should be 3mm instead of 2.5mm because the arms have been delaminating consistently. I've done one warranty replacement on the bottom plate and have another that's held together with CA glue and needs to be replaced. I reached out to the new owner of Armattan, Derrick, and he said he would look into getting some 3mm bottom plates, but that was a while ago and haven't seen any progress.

I've also switched over to ELRS and have updated the rear antenna mount 3D print to hold a Happymodel EP1 RX antenna. Files available here:

Since originally posting this build, I did a PID Toolbox blackbox tune on it, following the Rotor Riot video by Grus FPV, and that made a very noticeable difference in handling overall and propwash performance.

OH, and the 4S tattu R-line 550 mah battery is absolutely bonkers on this thing. Highly recommended!


This is my current go-to micro ripper. It flies great and is very quiet and also very durable. I was concerned that the bottom plate is only 2.5mm instead of 3mm but so far it's been holding up to a lot of abuse and crashing, even on pavement. It has enough room to fit everything comfortably so building is a lot easier than with some micros. I had to rotate the FC so the power leads come out the front because there wasn't enough room between the FC and Vista with it in standard orientation but that wasn't a problem.

The antenna mount that comes in the kit is pretty much useless, at least for the Vista antenna, so I designed a 3D printed holder that fits between the aluminum supports in the rear and it works great. Also made a holder for the capacitor and beeper that weighs basically nothing. I'll be posting. The 3D prints are linked below.

The weight is crucial on these micro builds if you want it to fly well and not be a nightmare to tune or fly like a brick. This one comes in at about 120g dry weight. The tattu 550mah 95c has been great for this build and is fairly light but packs a good punch.

I went with the newer Xing2 1404 4600kv motors on this and they're very good and very pretty too, like shiny jewelry or something haha, BUT they're flat on the top and wide so they won't fit one of my favorite props, the Emax Avan 3x2.4x3. I've already killed one of these motors and replaced it with a Xing camo 1404 4600kv, which is what I've used on several other micros and love those motors, and they fit the Avan props, so I'll probably just stick with those going forward. The HQ props are not bad and are way more durable, there's just something special about the Avans.

Here's a flight video



Sign in to comment

MaxteR   Sep 17, 2023  

Nice build! Was it difficult to PID tune it? I've noticed that JHEMCU GHF420AIO has ICM42688 gyro on it. I had tough time with this gyro before, but I would like to use same AIO on my Tadpole. Thanks!

Flip_FPV   Sep 17, 2023 

Mine has the mpu6000 gyro.. i bought it a while ago. not sure about the 42688.

Guides & Reviews

Jun 21, 2021

AirbladeUAV has done it again and this time they've brought long range to the 5" class! Based on the popular Transformer Mini, the new Transformer 5" Ultralight adopts a lot of the same design philosophies with larger props and more payload capacity. It can fly upwards of 20 minutes on a 4 cell Li-Ion battery pack and in ideal conditions it's got a range of over 4 to 5 miles. In this guide I'll walk..

Read more
Mar 04, 2021

With the release of the DJI FPV Drone cinematic FPV has become a lot more accessible, but you certainly don't want to crash a $750 drone! The QAV-CINE Freybott is a compact, lightweight cinematic FPV drone that can take a hit and keep going. It's a lot safer to fly indoors and around people. With a naked GoPro or the SMO 4k you can capture some great stabilized footage. In this guide I'll show you..

Read more