QSX – Kit Build an All Band All-Mode 10-watt Radio

For those of you that are interested in building your own radio from a kit, this kit is for you. The good folks at QRP-Labs are creating an all band, all mode 10-watt radio that will cost about $150. The following information is from the QRP-Labs web page.

QSX (QRP Labs SSB Xcvr) is a 40m SSB transceiver. It will have an optional 10-band (160m-10m) filter module and an optional extruded aluminum enclosure. This will make an all-band HF all-mode 10W high-performance transceiver.

The kit inherits all the functionality of the famous QCX single-band CW transceiver kit but adds SSB, AM, FM, PSK31, and RTTY. This will be the lowest cost all-HF radio available but also high performance and packed with features. These are the planned features of QSX:

  • Software Defined Radio (SDR) technology with standalone Digital Signal Processing (DSP), no PC required
  • Very high-performance 24-bit Analog to Digital Converter (ADC) and 24-bit Digital to Analog Converter (DAC)
  • 40m (single band); or with the optional extra board, 160-10m (10-band, including 60m)
  • Modes: SSB, CW, AM, FM, PSK31, RTTY, WSPR beacon
  • Power output: 10W from 13.8V supply (power output is adjustable by the firmware)
  • Single power supply needed, 12V to 14V
  • USB host interface and connector, for a USB keyboard to allow PC-less operation on PSK31 and RTTY
  • USB device interface and connector, for PC CAT Control
  • QSX can appear to a PC as a high-performance 24-bit USB sound card and radio – for digital modes from a PC e.g. FT8, either demodulated or as I-Q for PC SDR programs
  • Built-in CW IAMBIC keyer (or straight keying also possible) with raised-cosine key-envelope shaping
  • DSP features (selectable sharp filters, AGC, Speech Compression, Noise Reduction, etc.)
  • Dual microphone inputs (mobile phone headset with VOX, or RJ45 connector for Kenwood/Yaesu mics)
  • Dual VFO (A/B/Split), frequency and message memories
  • Through-hole assembly only
  • Built-in test equipment features for alignment, debugging, and general-purpose use
  • Detailed assembly manual
  • Macro facility for user-defined sequences of operations, or redefinition of controls
  • Front panel: 16 x 2 LCD (yellow/green backlight), 2 rotary encoders, 4 buttons, mic/earphones socket
  • Soft-power on/off switch, the radio saves its state automatically on switch off, so that it starts up in the same state next time
  • Free firmware updates for life, very simple firmware update procedure via a USB memory stick

QSX is still in development! The above list is subject to change. The following is a FAQ with information about QSX. 

These kits are NOT yet available, but should be coming out “Real Soon Now”. There is no waiting list. There is no pre-order list.

QSX Specifications

The QRP-Labs QSX specifications page can be accessed by clicking here.

QSX Design Theory

The good people at SWLing.com have a great article on the upcoming QSX radio. On this site, they have the proceedings paper that Hans Summers G0UPL produced. In addition, the slides from Hans’ talk are available, along with an audio version of his presentation on the design theory of the QSX.

Amplifier

For those of you that think 10-watts may not be enough power, there are some third party amplifier kits available. These will take the 10-watt output and produce over 100 watts from a 12-volt DC power supply. These amplifiers typically require a separate low pass filter on the output of the amplifier. More information on these amplifiers when testing has been performed.