Meepo Shuffle S (Meepo V4S) Review – Best affordable Electric Skateboard? Maybe.

Meepo board is the OG in bringing us affordable options for electric skateboards and since 2017, it has been amongst the top choices for those who are looking for affordable electric skateboards. While their current best seller, Meepo V4 (Shuffle) was just released 10 months ago, Meepo decided to give us an update with the V4s (Shuffle S)… So, let’s see what the updates are, and if it gives Meepo further lead over other boards under $500.

Let’s get right through it!

Meepo Shuffle S (V4S) Build and Specs

  • Deck: 8-ply Canadian maple, 1-ply fiberglass; wide concave with a rocker profile
  • Electronic Speed Controller: LingYi ESC, push-to-start; 4 speed and braking modes
  • Motors: 540W hub motors
  • Marketed top speed: 29 mph (47 km/h)
  • Batteries: 4AH 144Wh or 288Wh 
  • Marketed range: 10 miles (16km) or 18 miles (29km)
  • Trucks: Meepo’s 45° Shredder trucks
  • Wheels: 105*65mm, 78A donut wheels

The deck of the Meepo Shuffle S is made of 8-ply Canadian maple and 1-ply fiberglass. We can expect a mild flex to it but it compensates with a pretty deep and aggressive concave design. This helps in securing leg placement for great balance during a ride.

The deck also has a slight rocker profile which we’re a fan of. This form made the Meepo V4S feel closer to the ground. 

Elegant Upgrade on Design

The upgrade of the board is focused on the design. From an orange toy-ish looking color scheme on the Meepo V4, The Meepo Shuffle S (V4S) took a more elegant approach, which we like better, especially on the graphics beneath the deck. 

As for the electronic speed controller, the V4S uses the latest Lingyi ESC with a push-to-start feature. It has 4 speed and braking modes which can be adjusted separately. It does provide a smooth acceleration to the board, but is it as smooth as a Hobbywing ESC? We’ll talk about that later on. 

Lower Rating of Motors and Bigger Wheels?

Another change Meepo did on the Shuffle S is using a lower rating for the motors. The Meepo Shuffle S uses dual 540W hub motors which might come as a surprise to Meepo V4 fans. The previous V4 uses dual 620W hub motors and Meepo claims that it’s a necessary sacrifice to allow using big 105mm donut wheels. I guess we will have to find out if going with a smaller wattage motor has any negative impact on torque and speed.

These are clones of the famous Cloudwheels which significantly reduce road vibrations. Will it have any effect on the power, though? We’ll find out later on.

The marketed top speed for the Meepo Shuffle S is 28.5mph or 46km/h. During our test, we managed to reach 28mph or 45km/h. This is a praiseworthy feat for a budget board.

What’s here to stay are the 45° Shredder Downhill Trucks. These trucks are known to be stable rather than carv-y. 

To check out our review on Meepo V4 for comparison, click here.

Two Options for Batteries

So, did Meepo change anything for the batteries? The Meepo V4S is keeping the same two options for batteries: a normal 4AH 144Wh battery with a marketed range of 10 miles or 16km and an extended range version of 288Wh battery with a marketed range of 18 miles or 29km. 

We received the basic version of the board, and our heavyweight 95kg rider managed to reach a maximum distance of 6 miles or 10km out of the 10 miles or 16km marketed range. It is nowhere near the marketed range but as usual, weight and speed play a huge factor in achieving the maximum possible range of a board. 

Meepo also admits that using 105 mm wheels will sacrifice the range by a bit and they insist that everyone should get the ER version for more range.

On the bright side, the battery is fast charging. You can reach a full charge in just 30 minutes by purchasing a separate 8A fast charger for the board.

Now that we know all about the specs of the Meepo V4S, let’s talk about everything in action!

Meepo Shuffle S (V4S) Riding Experience

From the get-go, the Meepo V4S is a budget board on steroids! Riding around the V4S is super strong. So I guess, it does live up to the well-known Meepo reputation of delivering a bit of punch when it comes to acceleration and braking. 

The controls are still smooth and are not entirely aggressive but beginners should be careful when riding the board for the first time. The board can catch you off guard with its punchy acceleration. With that said, this new Ling Yi ESC did a good job at delivering a smooth ride with the board but it still falls a bit behind the Wowgo 2S Max’s silky smooth 12S Hobbywing ESC. 

Interested in Wowgo 2S Max? Click here.

Overkill Acceleration Power

Once you get used to it, we are pretty sure that a lot of riders out there would appreciate the punchiness of this board. It turns out that the drop in motor wattage number doesn’t really affect the actual performance that much, since the V4 already has a pretty overkill acceleration power.

The deck is without a doubt the charming point of the V4S. It is nice to stand on with the lower ride height. The board’s concave is also very easy to feel while riding and secures your feet at all speed modes. The board is not flexible during rides, which highlights stability when riding at higher speeds. 

The 105 mm Donut Wheels definitely did their job at absorbing road vibrations, especially on rough roads. But as we all know, hub motors are still hub motors and when the roads get shittier, you would still feel the vibrations traveling through your spine.

To check out our review on Cloudwheel Donuts, click here.

Shredder Trucks Are Geared Towards Stability

As always, Meepo’s 45° Shredder trucks are biased towards stability, while 50° trucks, such as the Poseidon trucks on the Wowgo 2s Max, would be more carv-y than stable.

With that said, it’s a nice pair of trucks. While the Shredder trucks do not rise to the level of branded trucks such as the Caliber II or Paris, they are definitely just as good as the other proprietary trucks found among affordable eskates. The trucks are decent for carving, have a good return to the center, and are absolutely stable to ride at top speed.

Big 105mm Wheels to the Rescue!

It has to be said that, Meepo’s 105mm semi-AT wheels are not Cloudwheels, and is not as good as the genuine Cloudwheels when it comes to ride smoothness.

However, at the end of the day, every millimeter helps when it comes to reducing road vibration. These 105mm wheels do make a huge difference, when compared to a 90mm (such as the one on original V4), when riding on bad roads.

Making 105mm a default wheel size is especially helpful for eskate beginners or commuters, who above all else, value “not flying off the board for failing to dodge a stick.” 

Meepo Shuffle S VERDICT – Punchy Acceleration and Braking!

So, here comes the verdict. For a board retailing at 500 USD and is now priced lower at 419 USD with Meepo’s current sale, the V4S is a good board with a pretty great design and polish. The addition of 105 mm Wheels would probably split the crowd. For some, it sacrifices range and reduces carving fun; for others, especially beginners, it makes the board much more usable, comfortable and safe.Well, at least you can always shell out more and go with the ER version if range is a concern.

At the end of the day, Meepo V4s is still one of the top choices for an affordable $419 and THE CHOICE for anyone looking for a sub $500 board with big wheels, or a budget board with strong torque.  

If you are interested in buying the Meepoboard, be sure to use our affiliate link here.
It will help us out and you’ll be tagged as an Electric Skateboard HQ customer and probably be treated better. Cheers!

Meepo Hurricane Review – Great board, where does it stands?

Meepo Board is traditionally known to make powerful boards at the best “price-performance” ratio. The brand is always your go-to choice for eskates in the sub-$500 segment. Although, they’re having less recognition for higher-priced boards. Meepo Board changes the game in 2021 with Meepo Hurricane. This $1699 board has been overwhelmingly popular in the eskate community. So, what sets this all-terrain carbon fiber board apart from its peers? How is it different from other 2-in-1 boards that use the Evolve formula? Let’s find out.

Build and specs of Meepo Hurricane

  • Deck: T700 carbon fiber, double-drop, wide concave, stiff deck, top-access electronic compartment
  • ESC: LingYi FOC ESC 70 Belt, 4-speed modes, push-to-start feature
  • Marketed Top Speed: 35mph or 56km/h
  • Motors: 3500 W * 2
  • Batteries: 12s4p Molicel P42A
  • Marketed Range: 31miles or 50km
  • Trucks: Double Kingpin Truck
  • Wheels: 155mm pneumatic wheels; 90mm street wheels
  • Board Weight: 34 lbs or 15.4 kg
  • Warranty: 1-year guarantee

Meepo Hurricane uses a T700 Carbon Fiber double-drop deck with a built-in, top-access electronic compartment. We didn’t really know what T700 carbon fiber is until we were researching for this review and apparently, it’s commonly used in drone cameras. This type of carbon fiber reduces the probability of cracks.

The deck is also wide and has a full concave. There’s no flex on the board. The carbon fiber is stiff and it’s designed with wave lines that look sleek yet adds a military theme.

Top-access electronic compartment

Inside the carbon fiber deck, you’ll find a giant battery with a 12s4p configuration using Molicel P42A. This is considered a great cell in the market. It adds up to 725.8 watt-hours, which is the third biggest battery pack you can find on any 2-in-1 board. In terms of specs, it’s behind by only a few watts than the Ownboard Zeus’s 13s4p 899wh and Eovan GTS Carbon’s 12s4p 852Wh pack. Okay maybe not ‘a few’, but you get the point.

Big bubble (high top speed) third highest on the chart

This 725.8wh battery pack gave Meepo a marketed range of 31miles or 50km on all-terrain wheels, and 44 miles or 70km range on street wheels.

Our 210lbs or 95kg test rider put the numbers to the test and got 18.5miles or 30km out of the AT set up. With street wheels, we got 31 miles or 50km. 

In our range test, we tried as much as possible to ride. You could probably get the higher advertised range with lighter weight or by riding conservatively.

Electronic Speed control – Hello again, LingYi ESC

For the electronic speed controller, Meepo uses their usual LingYi ESC and they got the latest and greatest version, as always. Hurricane is installed with LingYi FOC 70 Belt with a push-to-start feature. It has 4-speed modes and 4 brake modes that can be set independently of each other. 

Meepo Hurricane also uses Double Kingpin Trucks. In the riding experience, we’ll see if these trucks blend well with 155mm pneumatic wheels. Purchasing Meepo Hurricane also comes with 90mm street wheels if it matches your preferences better. You can also swap these wheels for other semi-AT wheels like Cloudwheels or Meepo’s 110mm Cyclone wheels.

To check out our Meepo NLS Belt Review, click here.

Dual Belt drive – 3500W belt motor

Powering these wheels is a set of 3500W belt motors. Motor wattage means little at this price range, but just for those who are interested, these numbers are the highest out of all belt-driven boards in our database.

With these motors, the Meepo Hurricane has a top speed of 35mph or 56km/h and we managed to only hit 31mph or 50km/h. Although the 35mph was not met, 31mph is still very fast.

The board weighs in at 34 lbs or 15.4 kg and comes with a 1-year warranty.

As you can see, Meepo does what they do best with the Meepo Hurricane – offering beefy specs for its asking price. What’s unexpected for me is how well built and well polished the board is. 

If Meepo Hurricane is the first Meepo, you might have no idea that the company has its roots as an affordable brand. While looks can be subjective, I think everyone will agree that this is the best-looking Meepo ever seen.

Riding experience of Meepo Hurricane

Now, let’s move off the specs on paper and onto the road.

The highlight of the Meepo Hurricane is its power. Meepo loves injecting loads of power into their boards and that’s definitely what happened here.

Out of all 2-in-1 boards in the market, the Meepo Hurricane ranks high on the list, beating any other board that isn’t a 4-wheel drive. 

Power: Meepo Hurricane VS Exway Atlas

Meepo Hurricane and Exway Atlas

Comparing its acceleration or power against Exway Atlas, Meepo Hurricane is way stronger than the 2-wheel drive version of Atlas and almost as strong as Atlas’ 4-wheel drive.

However, the Atlas 4-wheel drive has better torque than Hurricane and can start from a complete stop even on thick grass. Hurricane struggles with this acceleration feature. The 4-wheel drive Exway Atlas also has more grip in offroading and when going up very steep hills, more so when the roads are slippery.

LingYi catches up with Hobbywing ESC

With all that power on the board, it’s no surprise that the Meepo Hurricane also has good speed control. We can finally say that the control smoothness of the latest LingYi ESC is now indistinguishable from the gold-standard set by Hobbywing ESC. 

Meepo Hurricane has 4-speed modes, and all are smooth and intuitive. Mode 1 and 2 are tame, probably intended for casual riding, while mode 3 and mode 4 are thrillingly powerful. Having 4 different modes for braking also allows you to choose between gentler braking to having a very strong brake on the 4th brake mode. Those who love strong brakes would be really happy with the brakes here. 

To check out our Meepo V4 Review, click here.

Double Kingpin trucks geared towards stability

Meepo clearly wants Hurricane to be ridden fast, as even the double kingpin truck on Hurricane is geared towards stability rather than for fun carving. The trucks are not the most agile and the board remains comfortably stable at high speed. 

However, this also means that the Hurricane is not your best option for carving. Stiff deck, big wheels, and tight trucks are all minus points for fun carving, and we don’t feel much temptation to carve around when we are on the Hurricane. 

This is in contrast to the Exway Atlas, which is geared towards responsive trucks that are more fun to carve with, but less stable at high speed.

Built for speed and stability

Meepo Hurricane riding shots

Besides the trucks, the rest of Hurricane’s built speaks stability, too. The carbon fiber deck is wide and has a nice concave to it. It feels nice and stable underneath the feet. The double-drop deck also allows a low to ground ride feel, further adding to the stability. Stiff decks don’t bounce, which is yet another point for a stable high-speed ride. 

With all that said, designing a board this way has a few trade-offs. For starters, a low ride height also means low ground clearance, and your beautiful carbon fiber deck is just one tall bumper away from becoming less beautiful. 

The stiff deck and relatively smaller 155mm pneumatic wheels mean going off-road on gravel, and small rocks aren’t as comfortable as other 2-in-1 boards with bigger wheels and flexible decks.

Going with street wheels further exacerbates both of these problems, where the board bottoms out on each bumper and becomes unbearable when riding on poorly paved roads. 

Meepo Hurricane with 90mm wheels

To avoid feeling every small crack and bump, we would recommend skipping the 90mm street and going for semi-AT wheels like the 105mm cloud wheels, or anything bigger. The safest bet is to stick to the AT set-up.

THE VERDICT- Should you buy Meepo Hurricane?

You see, it has been more than half a year since the initial launch of the Meepo Hurricane and even as the hype cooled, the board remains wildly popular. We think all this love is well-deserved, as Meepo Hurricane not only hit it out of the park when it comes to delivering maximum value for the price, it also has an amazing look and amazing polish to go with it. 

Meepo Hurricane

While the similarly priced Exway Atlas 2-wheel-drive is a better carving board and has some fun features such as having a smartphone app, Meepo Hurricane has a much better range and better power. So, whether you are looking for an all-terrain board that speaks power and stability, or simply want a polished AT board that tops the competition with specs, Meepo Hurricane is the board for you. Do look elsewhere, if you want a board that has maximum carving fun, or looking to do hardcore off-roading.

RIDE SAFE, GUYS!

If you are interested in buying the Meepo, be sure to check out our affiliate link here.
You’ll be tagged as an Electric Skateboard HQ customer and probably be treated better. Cheers!

Meepo V4 (Shuffle) Review – A new direction? (Updated)

Finally, Meepo launched Meepo V4 on 20th August.

After the wildly successful launch in 2017, the original Meepoboard kick-started the era of affordable eskate and soon earned itself a notorious reputation for being the most frequently refreshed product in this niche. Within 6 months, we saw Meepo V1.5 which was immediately followed by Meepo V1.51 then V2, V2 Plus, and finally V3 in 2019. 

For a company that’s so addicted to rolling out marginal improvements in short succession, we were more than surprised when 2020 rolled past without a Meepo V4. Finally, in the fourth quarter of 2021, Meepo finally is putting up a new iteration for their best-selling line-up. 

It has been a while, so this better be good.

Unboxing Meepo V4

Meepo V4 Box

And, Oh god this box is not a great start. I didn’t realize Meepo is selling from Toy’R’us now.

Luckily for Meepo this should be easily changed once they realized we are buying eskate for ourselves and not for our kids. If you like the design of the box, please leave a comment below to make your support known, or otherwise, I bet it wouldn’t last beyond the first batch.

Thankfully, the design of Meepo V4 is nothing like the box. 

Meepo V4 Review – Specifications

Meepo V4 Chart

Let’s take a quick look at the spec now.

  • Board name: Meepo V4 (Shuffle)
  • Deck Length (inch and cm):36 inch (91.5cm)
  • Motors: 2 x 620W hub motors
  • ESC type (LingYi/ Customize/ VESC/ Others) :LingYi (LY-FOC 1.0)
  • Wheel: 90mm; 72A Durometer
  • Battery Type: 10S2P 2000mah , 144Wh
  • Marketed Top Speed in mph & kmh: 29mph /46KMH
  • Marketed Range in miles & km: 11 miles/18KM (Depend on riding style, weight, terrain, and weather. )
  • Charging time: 3.5-4H (30min with 8A fast charger)
  • Weight in lbs and kg: 17.2lbs /7.8KG
  • Warranty Duration: 6 months (180days)
  • Price: $469

Meepo V4 – Build

It has been quite a while before we reviewed our last Meepo, and it is a pleasant surprise to see the build quality and polish continues to improve as the year went by. Meepo V4 is a very polished board despite the $469 price tag.

Deck

Testing the flex of Meepo V4

The Meepo V4 deck is a combination of 8 plies Canadian maple and 1 ply fiberglass. 

It has a pretty aggressive W concave, mild flexibility, and a slight rocker profile. I love decks with rocker profiles, I’ll explain later. The deck is also slightly shorter than most longboards, at 36” (typical e-longboard = 38”) which is supposed to help with storage. 

Deck of Meepo V4
Nice aggressive concave (but not too aggressive! unlike the one on Exway Flex)

Electronic Speed Controller (ESC)

For the electronic speed controller, Meepo V4 uses the latest-redesigned LingYi ESC (LY-FOC 1.0).

As always, it comes with a push to start feature. As always, LingYi ESC allows 4 acceleration modes and 4 braking mode to be set independently from each other. When it comes to smoothness, LingYi has been playing catch up with Hobbywing ESC since 2018. As the year goes by, they come close, and hopefully this time they manage to be as smooth as Hobbywing.

Battery

And when it comes to battery, Meepo V4 uses a 10S2P 4AH that’s rated at 144wh. 10s2p battery has been the standard for entry-level board eskate, but a slight disappointment when some of the latest budget eskate, like Meepo’s nemesis Wowgo’s 2s Pro is rocking 12s2p battery. 

Showing Meepo V4 battery rating

Anyhow, Meepo promised a modest 11miles or 18km range for the V4, and our range test yielded us 10 miles or 16 km.

On a related note, the battery allows fast charging which can reach a full charge in 30 minutes.

Trucks – Shredder trucks

For the trucks, Meepo re-do the mold for their proprietary Shredder truck. It’s a pair of 7 inches trucks that are 45°. The bushings are 90A. Meepo says they made a new, more precise mold, which they say should improve its performance. What I can say for sure is that it sure the hell looks better.

Meepo V4 truck

Hub and wheels

For the motors, Meepo V4 uses 640W dual hub motors. Typical Meepo, always trying to one-up everyone else when it comes to motor power. For reference, WowGo 2s Pro uses dual 500W motors; Backfire G2 Black uses dual 400W hubs, and the old Meepo V3 uses a pair of 540W hubs. 

However, higher wattage doesn’t always mean better torque, especially when paired to a modest 10s2p battery. Something our ride test later would test..

These hub motors are currently not compatible with Cloudwheels donuts, but there is always a chance that they develop one.

The durometer for the front wheels are 72A, pretty soft, and the PU sleeve is rated to have 82A durometer. 

Misc

It is worth mentioning that Meepo V4 does have IP6X certification which means dustproof and some water resistance.

Now that we know the build and specs, it’s time to ride!

Riding Experience on Meepo V4

Meepo V4 riding photo

The things Meepo V4 did well

After getting on the board for a while, it becomes apparent that V4 is designed with stability as the priority.

Let me explain:

The deck has an aggressive W shape concave and that helps to lock in our feet.
The rocker deck adds another level of comfort giving as the rocker curve gives our foot something to push against during speed changes.
Only having mild flex on the deck further adds to stability.
On top of that, the rocker deck also means lower ride height which further improves stability. Too bad the lower riding height is a double-edged sword as it also means a very low 44mm ground clearance, causing the enclosure to kiss the floor when we ride over speed bumps.

Meepo V4 enclosure scratched
Scratched

Meepo’s 45° Shredder truck was geared towards stability as compared to 50° trucks which was more carvy (eg: Wowgo 2s Pro’s Poseidon truck). All in all, the new Shredder truck is pretty good. While it does not rise to the level of branded trucks such as the Caliber II or Paris, it’s definitely as good as any other proprietary truck amongst affordable eskate. Decent for carving, good return to center, and absolutely stable to ride at top speed. 

So,
the deck is great for stability, and the trucks are geared towards stability, how’s the ESC? Will the LingYI ESC, which traditionally leans towards raw and powerful, screw up the stability theme for Meepo V4?

Surprisingly, no! I am happy to say that, after 3 years and countless iterations, we finally reach the point where this (LY-FOC 1.0) version of LingYi ESC is indistinguishable from Hobbywing ESC when it comes to control-smoothness. The speed control of Meepo V4 is now as smooth as it can be while still being as strong as it always was.

Finally.

Typical Meepo, this board is freaking strong

Initially, I even found the new LingYi ESC to be boringly safe, with no ‘punch’.

Yes, it’s now as smooth as a Hobbywing ESC, but this was actually a disappointment for a Meepo die-hard who loves Meepo for its obsession with power, torque, and thrill.

If you recall, Meepo V3 was and still is one of the if not the most powerful entry-level electric skateboard out there. Meepo was so obsessed with power that it was willing to sacrifice ride comfort for it when they reduced the hub wheels PU sleeve’s thickness in order to make space for a pair of giant 540W motors. Some Meepo diehard love them for it, and those diehard fans would probably feel disappointed here. 

And then, just after I posted my article review essentially calling the Meepo V4 a “PG 13 beginner-friendly toy”, I was informed by the Meepo team that I wasn’t sent the production ESC. The prototype ESC that all of us reviewers get had its power capped, and wouldn’t give us the full power that the real V4 in production would.

So, our team decided not to make assumptions and waited for the real ESC.

After switching over to the new ESC I found myself cursing the Meepo team, because I now had to rewrite half of my review, as my conclusion on its power did a 180.

After changing to the actual ESC, the Meepo V4 showed its true colors, unleashing the absolute beast that we always expect Meepo to be.

Going for the highest speed mode, the board is freaking strong, with powerful acceleration that would knock you off if you are not prepared for it. The braking is very strong too, smooth, but very strong. Thankfully, for those who prefer relaxing rides, the third acceleration mode and 2nd brake mode have kept their gentle profile.

In the end, the Meepo V4’s modest 10s2p did not end up bottlenecking the dual 640W motors, as the hubs still delivered some of the most powerful acceleration you can find amongst hub-driven boards, and this is now the most powerful hub board we know of at the sub-$500 price point.

To put the torque in context, the Meepo V4’s acceleration is about 30% stronger than its fiercest rival, the Wowgo 2s Pro. Being hub-driven, the Meepo V4 might not have the torque that a typical dual belt drive eskate has, however, the Meepo V4 does have a steeper acceleration curve, giving it a more thrilling start than an average belt-driven board when drag racing on a flat surface.

Writing undertneath Meepo V4
You don’t say

Some other stuffs:

When designing the V4, Kieran (Meepo founder) says he notices his team members favor shorter boards when picking their ride. A longer board although should provide more comfort, his team member ends up always picking shorter boards as they are more practical to use: easier to bring around, fit more car trunks, and allowing tighter turns in urban commute. Hence, when he designed Meepo V4, it was aimed to have all the practicality of a shortboard, and compromised on that by adding 6 more inches for more comfortable rides.

Meepo V4 on poor road
Imagine riding through this with an electric shortboard

And the V4 is indeed more comfortable than a shortboard especially when riding on rough pavements. On poor road, it is ‘merely uncomfortable’ due to the dual hub and stiffer deck, as opposed to agonizing when riding through the same road with hub-shortboards.

Verdict – Who should get Meepo V4?

So, to summarize. The Meepo V4 might not have the biggest battery for its price, but when everything is said and done, it’s more well-rounded, more versatile than ever, while still being as thrilling as we always wanted it to be.

While its nemesis, the Wowgo 2s Pro (another top pick for an entry-level board), has a slight edge in battery size and carving fun; the Meepo V4 excels on both sides of the extremes.

On the one hand, new riders will value the gentle ride and stability the Meepo V4 provides, with its stable trucks, lower ride height, and relaxing control in the lower speed modes. At the other extreme, the V4 became a thrilling beast once you turn the speed and brake modes to the max. Thrilling acceleration, strong brakes, everything that gets your adrenaline pumping.

The Meepo V4 might also be well suited for another often-forgotten group, the eskate commuters. This is due to its 30-minute quick-charge option; as well as it’s shorter length, allowing for tighter turns on sidewalks, easier handling, and a better fit in a car trunk..

All in all, for under $500, the Meepo V4 is among the top 2, if not the top choice in the market right now.

If you are interested in buying the Meepo, please do support us by using our affiliate link here.
It will help us out too and you’ll be tagged as an Electric Skateboard HQ customer and probably be treated better. Cheers!

Meepo NLS Belt Review – So much Boosted in it, yet …

“Meepo should release a belt-driven board.” We hear that quite a lot in the forum. And ta-dah! Here it is.

Much unlike Meepo typical habit of getting product out of the door fast, the Belt Meepo was in the labor room for quite a while. In fact, 8 months ago I had already been shown the photo of the prototype belt Meepo.

Belt Meepo Prototype
The prototype for Belt Meepo.
Pretty different from what we have now.

A lot of things can happen in 8 months, especially when we are in the year 2020. Among the tragedies of 2020 was that Boosted went down.

Well, It’s the ultimate altruistic act to be an organ donor. The idea is, don’t let the most valuable parts of you die with you. So, when Boosted went down, Meepo became the recipient for the organ transplant. Basically, Meepo reached into Boosted’s grave and came out with the drive train system, the trucks, and the 85mm wheels. They transplanted them into a board of their own and creatively named it, the NLS Belt.

Meepo fans should be glad that these proven parts are now part of the new Meepo board, but many were troubled when the specs of the new board were announced.

Meepo NLS Belt Review

See, priced at $699, The NLS Pro Belt was right in what we call the mid-tier price segment and a direct competitor to the Exway Flex and also the Backfire Zealot. This is not a great place to be for Team Meepo. In terms of customer service and delivery, these 2 competing brands are performing better than the Meepo, at least recently.

We thought the specs of the NLS Belt are worse than the competitors as well, but after a closer look, they actually weren’t. In reality, it’s only the top speed that’s lower.

  • Deck Size: 38-inch x 9-inch (96.5cm x 22.8cm)
  • Top Speed: 22.5mph (36km)
  • Range: 18miles (30km)
  • Battery Pack: 288Wh (Samsung 40T in a 10s2p, 8Ah)
  • Weight: 18lbs/ 8.2kg
  • Motor: 2 x 900W belt motors.
  • Wheels: 85mm 78A
  • Price: 699 USD

Let’s take a look at the electronic components:

Motors – Why so slow?

You see, the NLS Belt uses the same motors from the Boosted Stealth, rated at 900W each, but it only gives a top speed of 22.5mph (35kmh). This came as a surprise to many, including myself, as Meepo has traditionally been obsessed with speed, sometimes to a fault. But this time, apparently, what bottlenecked the top speed is the LingYi ESC, and also their choice of a larger gear ratio. We will talk more about the speed a bit later.

Battery – Good range with Samsung 40T

In the range department, the NLS Belt uses the same great ER battery, made of Samsung 40T in a 10s2p setting, that’s 288wh and has a marketed range of 18miles (30kmh), which we managed to hit in our range test.

ESC and Remote – Cosmetic upgrade.

The board comes with a LingYi ESC, and hence we get the push to start feature. What’s not typical of the LingYi ESC is the new and much better-looking remote. It’s slightly different than the updated Hobbywing remote but obviously takes some inspiration from the Boosted remote. It goes well with the whole Boosted theme.

Enclosure – Same as always.

The electronics are housed in Meepo’s usual plastic enclosure, which has a digital meter to show the battery percentage; a godsend when trying to know the battery % when charging the board.

Now let’s look at the skate parts of the NLS Belt, or you may say, of Boosted.

Deck – the same deck that was the best feature of NLS.

NLS Belt, of course, uses the same 38” flexy deck as the original NLS and it’s made out of 7 layers of bamboo and 2 layers of fiberglass. It has a mild concave, some camber, and a lot of flex.

Remember back when the original Meepo NLS was released, everybody was amazed by how good it is? Other brands have since caught up but personally, I still think it is one of the best if not THE BEST flexy deck from any Chinese brand.

Yeap, I like it more than Exway Flex’s deck, bite me.

It’s deliciously flexible and the mild concave will help to let you know where your feet are.

Remember the original NLS use to have the electrical cable visible below the grip tape, and the NLS Pro just remedied it by adding a foam layer below the grip tape it? The latest NLS doesn’t have that anymore, everything is smooth now. However, I’m really not a fan of the latest grip-tape design.

Old Original NLS and the cable bump underneath the griptape

Truck- Boosted

The C&C’ed trucks and bushings are also from Boosted, instead of Meepo’s Shredder trucks.

It’s funny how every Chinese Brand seems to use two sets of trucks now: Branded trucks for their premium model and proprietary trucks for the budget model.

  • Wowgo: Paris Trucks & Paris clone
  • Backfire: Caliber II & Caliber clone
  • Exway: Seismic & Exway Triss
  • now, Meepo: Boosted & Meepo Shredder (Bear Kodiak clone)

I like Shredder Trucks, a lot, but Boosted’s are better.

Wheels – Boosted

The Wheels are 85mm 78a, the same as Boosted 3rd gens.

Boosted 85mm wheels are good & comfortable; especially when going head to head with generic wheels from typical Chinese brands; but everybody knows that Caguama is better.

Riding Experience

So, those are the specs, and after going through that a seasoned eskater would probably have been able to predict how the NLS Belt would ride.

Top speed – Might be too slow for you

Let’s start on the weakest point, the top speed. There is no way around it, if you want a board that rides above 22.5mph (35kmh), then this will be a deal-breaker.

As mentioned, the limits on the top speed come from the LingYi ESC, but not from the motors. The choice of going with a larger gear ratio of 17 to 56, or 1:3.3 also means that Meepo prioritized torque over top speed. The NLS Belt will not accelerate past 22.5mph (35kmh), but it sure as hell will get you there fast.

Torque – this is the fun part

Meepo designed the board prioritizing torque over top speed, and this actually makes the NLS Belt very fun to ride.

I love how the board rockets off the starting line and left other riders in the dust (until they caught up eventually due to the higher top-speed). NLS belt would probably be the champion in many drag races. (How I wish @Skatemetric is still around to visualize the drag race.)

Let me put it this way, if you like the thrill of going fast without actually needing to be fast, NLS Belt will be purrrfect.

Speed Control – How’s LingYi ESC now?

Acceleration – good but can be better.

Another nitpick that I have with the NLS Belt would be the speed control on the LingYi ESC. First things first, for those who are uninitiated, LingYi ESC’s have 4 acceleration modes and 4 brake modes, independent of each other.

Everyone by now should know that a LingYi ESC on a Meepo board is meant to be ridden on the 3rd acceleration mode, the perfect balance of smooth and strong. Going over to the highest 4th pro mode means the board is too strong and too raw for comfort; it’s almost only for certain situations and for drag races – where you uncage the beast and don’t mind it being untamed.

However, even ignoring the intentionally harsh 4th-speed mode, the Meepo NLS Belt and the current LingYi ESC are still slightly less refined than the Hobbywing ESC. and it is more pronounced during uphill or when turning on rough surfaces. Many riders probably wouldn’t notice the difference, I didn’t, but my friends who also rode the board did notice it.

Brakes – Brakes are perfect.

The brakes are strong and smooth though, even the 1st braking mode is plenty strong, and the strongest 4th braking mode is still plenty smooth. I always set it on the strongest brake mode for myself, and the lightest mode when I let others ride it. Everybody is happy.

Ride feels – Boosted imbued

Now, let’s talk about how well the board controls, and this is where the Boosted parts come in. Carving and, maneuvering on the NLS Belt is as nice as it was on a Boosted board. Of course it is! It’s the same trucks and bushings after all. Read or watch one of the hundreds of Boosted Stealth reviews, and that’s exactly what you get with NLS Belt. In short, it’s very stable, very comfortable, and very smooth for carving.

The wheels are the same. The 78a 85mm wheels are the same set from the Boosted Stealth – and they are known to be soft, comfortable and durable. However, as mentioned, the fact is that the Orangatang Caguama is still better, and many Boosted riders did make the swap, so that’s what we did too on the NLS Belt. It’s an easy swap and makes the ride silky smooth.

For those who hate road vibration. NLS Belt has no trouble on rough pavement. With a Flexy deck and 4 soft wheels, the NLS Belt is one of the most comfortable boards when riding on a poorly paved road.

For those speed zealot – consider Cloudwheels

For diehard Meepo fans who can’t live without a higher top speed, the easy fix is to swap to bigger wheels. (The harder fix is swap the ESC)

This is what you get for switching to Cloudwheels:

  • Top speed increased to 27mph (43kmh)
  • Slightly reduced range: around 15miles (25km) of range [preliminary test]
  • Increase comfort in rough terrain and increase safety from pebbles
  • Less fun when carving.

The switch is super easy, as Cloudwheels’ has the Boosted pulley sets that work seamlessly (obviously) here. It will only take you 10min and … money [$129 (wheels) + $39.9 (Boosted pulleys)].

I’m pretty surprise why Meepo doesn’t just tear a page out of Backfire’s playbook and advertise the NLS Belt with Cloudwheels.

Disclaimer: We are obviously the affiliate partner of Cloudwheels (& almost every other Eskate stuff).

So, if you are interested in buying Cloudwheels, be sure to check out our affiliate discount link here and uses code: “ESKATEHQ” during check out.
It will help you get a $10 discount and helps us out too.

On top of that, you’ll be tagged as an Electric Skateboard HQ customer and probably be treated better. Cheers!

Boosted successor?

So, is the NLS Belt a good replacement for those who would’ve bought a Boosted?

Nope. People love Boosted not only for the riding experience but also for the brand and everything that comes with it; Meepo and the NLS Belt don’t have all of that yet. When it comes to style, product polish, or customer experience, Meepo isn’t on the same level as what Boosted was. What the NLS Belt is at the end of the day, is a board that’s most physically close to the Boosted, but is not, in any way, the successor of the Boosted experience.

Verdict:

Taking it outside of the Boosted comparison, the NLS Belt is in itself a board that’s great in everything but the top speed. Meepo could’ve reduced the gear ratio, sacrificed some torque, and allowed the board to hit the standard 25mph (40kmh) top speed, but they didn’t.

Trading off thrilling acceleration for a mere 2 mph increase in top speed is certainly a deal that many won’t knowingly make, but unfortunately, most people don’t think past the marketed stats. Or Meepo could, you know, upgrade the ESC, even if it means increasing the selling price.

But it is what it is. The NLS Belt today is not a board for those who can’t look past the lower top speed; but for everyone else, the thrilling acceleration, good range, and the great riding experience made possible by the use of Boosted parts, is indeed thoroughly enjoyable.

Check out NLS Belt product page by clicking here!

Meepo V3 Review – Still the Budget Champ in 2020?

Foreword/Introduction

It seems like Meepo releases a new budget board every half year. We have the Original Meepoboard, Meepo 1.5, Meepo V2 &V2P and finally, in 2019, Meepo V3. Seeing that Meepo refreshes their product lines very frequently, we were pretty surprised that the V3 is still here to stay as of March 2020! Meepo, however, makes the Meepo V3 an even more appetizing deal now that there is a sea-shipping option that slashes the price down to $379 (as long as you are willing to wait a month for it to arrive.)

Meepo V3

  • Top Speed: 28mph/ 45kmh
  • Range: 11mil/ 18km
  • Weight: 16lbs/ 7.2kg
  • Charge Time: 3hrs
  • Price: 429USD with shipping included.
  • Features: 2 hub motors, regenerative braking, handles up to 30% slope, MR remote (with telemetry), swappable PU.

Unboxing

This time around, we are happy to say that Meepo has continued to improve in terms of packaging and design compared to their previous packaging styles. The Meepo V3 was nicely packaged in a smooth black ‘shoe-box’ with professional graphic design details. It’s good to see that they’re constantly improving, especially in the little things that we pay attention to.

As for what’s inside the box, the Meepo V3 comes with a handheld remote control with a screen (MR remote), 2 different sets of bushings – softer 83A (white) and harder 96A (blue) – that you can swap easily for your pleasure which is a great move (the one installed are 90A in yellow), T-tools, a board charger, and a bunch of cool stickers for the deck. 

Riding Experience

Acceleration and Braking

In the realm of budget electric skateboards, LingYi ESC has always been lagging behind Hobbywing ESC when it comes to perfect control smoothness. Hence, we were very sceptical when Meepo announced that they would be sticking to LingYi ESC on the Meepo V3, especially when some of their lineups have moved on to Hobbywing ESC and they were well received too. 

Although they promised that this latest iteration of LingYi ESC would be as smooth as Hobbywing’s, we weren’t that convinced initially. Some of the other boards we tested that still uses the LingYi ESC were pretty subpar so our expectations were low.

Surprise, surprise. Turns out, this latest iteration of LingYi ESC that the Meepo V3 uses is as good as promised and it’s the most pleasant surprise we’ve received from the V3 yet.

The acceleration is almost as smooth as the Hobbywing ESC in the first 3 speed modes, while the pro mode offers a much punchier acceleration, intended for those with more ‘extreme’ tastes. Not something that I use much but still appreciated. Side by side comparison with Hobbywing ESC will have the LingYi ESC felt a little bit ‘less refine’ than the Hobbwing ESC.

Update: Kieran (Meepo’s creator) later point out that the lack of ‘refinement in smoothness’ is mainly due to how LingYi ESC performs when the board re-accelerate from cruising – it usually accelerated more abruptly. A yet newer LingYi iteration released in July 2019 addressed the issue via a firmware update name “Flux”. So, I expect the Meepo V3 after July 2019 to have acceleration as refined as those of Hobbywing ESC.

The braking, which traditionally was the Achilles heel of LingYi ESC, is now more than perfect too. It’s gradual and strong, stronger than any Hobbywing variation but still perfectly smooth and under control which is great for riders. 

The Meepo V3 is designed to be the first one that takes off from the line and in pro mode, the acceleration is indeed very punchy and thrilling. The board boasts a 0 to 30km in 4.5 seconds, which almost halves the time of what it took for the V2. We didn’t actually objectively test this out, but the acceleration indeed felt very powerful.

To test out the difference between the latest iteration of Hobbywing ESC vs this latest iteration of LingYi ESC, we tested V3 (LingYi ESC) side by side with the NLS Pro in 90mm wheels (Hobbywing ESC) and the result is pretty surprising.

We expect V3 to outperform NLS Pro in a drag race, as LingYi ESC felt punchier, however, that didn’t happen. Though V3 felt punchier, it actually only accelerated just as fast as an NLS Pro in 90mm hub. Our conclusion is, on acceleration, the slight sacrifice of smoothness of V3 doesn’t translate to better acceleration. Sad.

Honestly, part of me actually prefers this LingYi ESC over Hobbywing ESC as I like strong brakes and LingYi ESC still has the smart turn-on features that Hobbywing ESC doesn’t. And the difference between smoothness is almost negligible now. I think many would share the same preference so finally and for once, Hobbywing ESC doesn’t reign supreme anymore.

Stability and Maneuverability

All in all, the shredder trucks and double tall barrel bushing that Meepo always uses are pretty nice. You can change the bushings according to your preference and your weight to have a setup that suits you the best, I suggest most people try out the 96A blue as for a 150lbs (68kg) me the yellow felt too soft.

Carving on the Meepo V3 is fun thanks to the flexible deck and it’s pretty stable for me. For instance, I can keep near the top speed quite comfortably once I switch to a harder bushing. We are also able to hit the top speed of 28mph(45kmh). (our sports tracker record 28.3mph/ 45.7kmh as the top speed!].

Vibration

Unfortunately, vibration is where the V3 is weak.

The V3’s priority is torque and power, and this leads to choosing the biggest hub. But a bigger hub motor also means there’s only a very thin layer of urethane between the motor and the ground so the vibration dampening ability is pretty poor. 

Despite using a fairly flexible deck, the Meepo V3 is not the most comfortable board when riding in less than perfect roads, which is quite unfortunate given that its siblings from Classic to NLS Pro all did quite well in this aspect.

Thankfully, there’s the option of buying and switching to 100mm hubs sleeve and wheels which would really improve this feature but in terms of the on-stock version 90mm, the Meepo V3 gets a B-/C+ from me when it comes to vibration handling.

Range

The Meepo V3 uses a 10S2P Battery Pack with a 20R cell which gets me 18.9km, about the range the base model Meepos aim to achieve. It’s not too bad as it’s sufficient for most people and more than most belt-driven electric skateboards as hub motors are much more energy efficient.

A closer look at the parts

Deck

The Meepo V3 uses 7 layers of true Canadian maple which are pretty flexible, but not as flexible as the deck on the NLS. Although with a deck this flexible, you can actually smash the enclosure to the ground if you jump on the deck.

With that though, it’s still a Vanguard clone as it has the same design as the previous gen. There’s a very subtle concave to help your feet feel comfortable on it, and the handle cut out might turn some people off but those who have used it before would know how practical it is.

Component Enclosures and ESC

As expected, this is the same plastic enclosure found on the other Meepos. They’re really strong and lighter than aluminium, but only time will tell if they’ll crack on the screw holes but so far I haven’t heard any incidents of that happening. Fingers crossed! The battery indicator is outside too, which is a good touch because I’d love to know how much the battery has charged up when charging.

Wheels

The Meepo V3 uses 90mm wheels with 78A durometer wheels. The PU sleeve on the hub motor wheels is swappable, and can be swapped to 100mm sets which as mentioned before, should make navigating on poor road more comfortable.

look how thin the PU sleeves are.

The bearings that the Meepo board uses, although not branded, are surprisingly good. They spin forever when put on freerolls, so that’s a win for us.

Trucks

I’m echoing my review of the Meepo Mini 2 ER’s trucks for this one too, but adding on that the stock bushing for the Meepo V3 (yellow 90A) might be too soft for most people. My suggestion would be to switch over to 96A if you weigh anywhere more than 150lbs(70kg).

As a personal preference though, I’d rather Meepo ship the 90A, 96A, and 100A than the 83A, 90A, and 96A that they’re currently shipping now. 

Remote

The V3 uses the MR remote, a remote with a screen. It’s the new face of LingYi ESC now but Meepo’s version is using soft-touch plastic as a finish so it feels nice to hold and it’s quite comfortable (read: ergonomic) to grip. 

The remote allows the separate adjustments of acceleration and braking modes without disconnection. Although the ‘reverse’ label is mislabeled which can be confusing to some, it’s actually the speed mode. You move into reverse instead by double-tapping the power button.

Verdict

From the original to V1.5 to V2, Meepo’s ‘version’ lineups have always been the de facto face of budget electric skateboards. Judging from what we’ve reviewed and experienced though, we can see that the V3 is likely to carry that torch from the V2 and continue to be the most popular budget board in the community.

With the improvement of the current LingYi ESC, together, it elevates the V3 to another level. The first 3 speed modes are almost perfectly smooth, along with its aggressive, punchy acceleration for thrillseekers. 

As per Meepo’s typical fashion of pushing the envelope just a little bit further, the V3 tried to maximize the power and torque by using a stronger and bigger hub. Although it was achieved with impressive acceleration and hill climb ability, unfortunately, it resulted in its bigger weakness – a stiff hub with a thin urethane sleeve that led to a really rough ride on poor roads. 

Thankfully, there’s always the option to switch to 100mm wheels to save the day. You can see the V3 as a watered-down NLS Pro as it falls a bit short of the refinement that we experience from the NLS Pro in both ride feel and specs, but a watered-down NLS Pro is still a very good deal for $429 if you ask me. And for those who have the patience for sea-shipping, the V3 at $379 is without any doubt, the best deal for a budget board that anyone can dream of.

Overall, the Meepo V3 has every reason to retain the throne as one of the most popular budget electric skateboards as its polish, feel for ride, and sheer performance are still second to none in the realm of $400 entry-level boards.

Check out Meepo V3 by click here.