We all know QRP Labs, purveyors of QRP kits, headed by QRP Hall of Fame member Hans Summers. They’re known primarily for the QCX and its variant, the QCX+ and QCX Mini. But today, Hans released a new product that’s sure to shake up the QRP Digital world: The QDX, a four band QRP digital transceiver that offers higher performance and greater features than competitor’s single band rigs, and at a lower price. But that is only part of the story.
The QDX is a performance power house, as it’s a full SDR transmitter and receiver with built in… everything. Everything is solid state (no relays) and all communication with a PC is done via USB- no digital interface needed. A high performance USB audio adapter is built into the QDX so there are no audio cables required either. As with the QCX, the QDX has its own test equipment built in, but not on a 16×2 display. The test routines, configuration, and debugging is all done via a serial console. No drivers are needed! This will be perfect for those wanting to integrate the QDX into a Raspberry Pi based portable build.
The QDX outputs 5 Watts at only 9 Volts, but can also be built to work fine on 12-14 V. What’s interesting is that this is a pure SDR, and does not contain an SSB exciter found in other digital-only phasing rigs. The QDX modulates the tones directly by measuring, and then adding the tone being sent to its built in sound card with the transmit frequency. There’s no modulation per se, it just outputs the tone directly from the si5351a. Very neat stuff!
The QDX will work on 80, 40, 30, and 20 meter bands. For now it’s not possible to put it on different bands, but QRP Labs’ iterative approach to design indicates that this may be a future possibility. Time will tell. But lets be honest: If this were a single band rig, we’d buy it and be just as happy 😉
Check out the QDX on QRP-Labs.com/qdx and the video below which explains far more than what I’ve posted here. It goes on sale on 10/11/21 for $60, plus $20 for an optional aluminum (aluminium?) case. You can also read the official announcement on the QRP Labs Groups.io page.