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X9503 2.4GHz 9-channel transmitter from JR

By Greg Covey
Published: March 12, 2010
X9503 9-channel 2.4GHz DSM2 radio system from JR
Product: The new X9503 combines Spektrum’s industry-leading 2.4GHz DSM technology with proven JR X9303 transmitter programming. Additional features such as 50-model memory, ModelMatch, and backward compatibility with all Spektrum receivers make this model a great value. The customer-requested throttle timer start-up feature has also been added, along with a backlit screen (with timeout) to increase visibility and readability on the display.

The bold red JR box really stands out stands out from other products and the 3-year limited warranty is highlighted in front of the JR logo. The X9503 radio system comes with a 9-channel R921 receiver, 1500mAh JR transmitter battery, AC Wall charger, On/Off receiver switch, and a binding plug. With an MSRP of only $849.99, the X9503 offers unprecedented value in a quality JR radio. Last, but not least, the X9503 comes with a real 75-page hardcopy manual. Apparently, JR listened to the customer dismay over the lack of paper manuals from the X9303 owners. If you are like me, you'll find the right moments to sit quietly reading the manual and slowly absorb the numerous features that the product can offer.

Performance: I have been waiting for the right model to upgrade my Spektrum DX7 transmitter and the original JR X9303 did not provide the significant benefits I needed for such a jump in cost. When the lower priced X9503 was released with features that topped the existing X9303, yet still had the proven X9303 transmitter programming, I knew it was time for an upgrade. In addition to having two more channels than my DX7 for my larger aircraft, I really needed the increased 50-model memory and bright backlit display that can be seen outside in the sunlight. Even when the original X9303 transmitter was re-fitted with a backlit display option, it did not timeout like the new X9503, which wasted battery time when not needed.

One of the many great features inherited from the X9303 is the ability to program servo speed control. This allows you to slow down a regular servo for a scale effect when used on retracts.

Another great feature of both the new X9503 and older X9303 transmitters is the ability to edit and store transmitter settings on any PC using JR’s PC Data Transfer USB interface (JRPA310). Further, you can transfer model setups directly between the two transmitters!

The gimbals provide smooth control and the switches seem easy to move. The radio is a little heavier than my DX7, but feels solid and secure in my hands. The backlit screen is a big improvement when you are at the field and want to reprogram settings in the pits. I was happy to see the new throttle timer start feature, which provides a reliable way to control the timer for all types of powered aircraft.

Note that Horizon has released a Service Bulletin for some of the early X9503 models. If your X9503 has the TH912J or TH912CM Product ID (PID) inside the battery compartment (behind the battery) then contact the Horizon Hobby Service Department at 877-504-0233.

Marketing: I would recommend the JR X9503 to anyone who wants to move up to the next level of proven DSM2 technology without worrying about outgrowing it too soon. The one new feature that will catch the customer’s attention is the highly visible backlit display so consider having one available for the customer to test.

With an MSRP of about $850, the X9503 is a great value which is best suited for intermediate to advanced flyers. The product will get plenty of attention from anyone wanting to protect their expensive aircraft model from interference or accidental jamming without a frequency pin. The 9-channel capability is sufficient for most giant scale and turbine jet pilots. When using the included R921 receiver, the control resolution is enhanced to 2,048 bits for super-fine steps. The built-in failsafe and servo sequencing features provide less latency than any other PCM radio on the market, and the DSM2 technology not only protects flyers from other flyers by eliminating jamming or unwanted interference, it protects us from ourselves by not allowing an incorrect model to be flown before selecting the correct one on the transmitter. The patent-pending Model Match model recognition protocol is an invaluable model-saving feature!

Product: X9503 9-channel 2.4GHz radio system
Maker: JR
Stock No.: JRP2930
MSRP/Street: $849.99/$549.99
Availability: Horizon Hobby

  • More model memory (50 models!)
  • More affordable that the X9303
  • More visible backlit display with timeout
  • Backward compatible with all Spektrum receivers
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