PortableSDR: The Holy Grail of portable SDR transceivers?

PortableSDRMany thanks to my buddy, Bennett Kobb (AK4AV), who shares information about the PortableSDR, one of five finalists in The Hackaday Prize.

PortableSDR creator, Michael R Colton, describes his project on Hackaday:

“The PSDR is a completely stand-alone (no computer needed), compact, Portable Software Defined Transceiver (hence the name, sorta). Originally designed for backpacking use by Ham Radio operators. It includes complete coverage up to about 30Mhz (plus 144Mhz), it has a 168Mhz ARM processor, color display, and an innovative interface.

Vector Network Analysis (which includes antenna analysis) and GPS functions are included.

The entire design is Open Source. The electronics are designed and laid out to be easy to understand and tinker with. In addition to source code, schematics, board layout and parts lists, articles and videos describing the theory of the design are being created.”

He includes this video of his working prototype:

I will certainly follow this project with interest. I love the fact that PortableSDR has such a small form factor, yet still manages to include room for a battery, display and CW paddles.

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4 thoughts on “PortableSDR: The Holy Grail of portable SDR transceivers?

  1. Fritz Anderson

    Is there any news of the project’s progress? The latest written news is from February, in a hackaday.io story, “PortableSDR Needs a Cinderella Story to Finish its Kickstarter.” The latest commit to the GitHub software archive was a month ago (3/8/2015) apologizing for not having written from October to just before then.

    Maybe I’m not reading closely, or I’ve missed something. Is there a purchasable product, was there intended to be, and how close is it to completion. If he didn’t make his funding goal, I can understand how that would turn the project into a spare-time hobby.

  2. EA4998URE - David

    Nice project. It actually reminds me of a similar idea I found in the web a while ago…

    Its name is piRadio and it is basically a battery-powered, stand-alone RTL-SDR receiver that uses a Raspberry Pi microcomputer for signal processing. It also uses a Ham-It-Up upconverter and a LNA. Some links:





    Some videos can also be found here:


    73! David – EA4998URE from Barcelona.


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