Wednesday, 22 March 2017

BuWizz Review

This presentation is for those who still haven't decided whether they want it or not, it is no in-depth technical analysis, but rather a common builder's view on a new way to control LEGO models.
BuWizz is high performance remote control system and battery box for LEGO® Power Functions
  • Easy to setup and use
  • Smooth controls
  • 3 speed modes
  • Able to control up to 2 XL motors per channel, in fast mode.
  • More powerful and more range than regular LEGO rechargeable battery box + IR receiver
  • Compact size, it has footprint of just two IR Receivers
  • Lots of ways to connect it to your model, I build in ModelTeam style a lot, so brick-shape is really great for me.
  • Battery and receiver in one package
  • Generally very stable app, despite the very first 1.0 Android app version. It never crashed, only lost connection once in a 8 hours testing, and numerous on/off.
  • 1.0 Android app has 3 predefined profiles: Car, Loader and Crane, with fixed joystick and sliders position and orientation. Hope we will get a customizable layout very soon.
  • Lost connection once (not really a major issue with early app, but fair to mention)
  • Studless builders (who form a major part of AFOLs) would probably like more attachment points on sides of the case.
  • If your model needs more than 4 channels, you need additional BuWizz
Since I do not own any other non-LEGO controller, I can't compare it to them. But I can compare it with LEGO IR, even though it is not fair to compare new BT controlled product with old IR system. But as always, this can additionally motivate LEGO to bring us its own new controlling system.
So, BuWizz really did well. It performs great, controls are smooth and responsive, and power delivered to the motors is noticeably greater than LEGO rechargeable box. Not sure how greater, but enough for motors to sound differently and for a model to perform more agile and with more power. Not to mention that it can be controlled via smartphone at long range, with gradually accelerating/decelerating motions. And for me, all of this is a big step forward. I can truly recommend it.