I have both and Airspy and the SDRplay RSP. I like them both, but on balance I prefer the RSP. The pluses of the RSP over the Airspy for me are:
1. Sensitivity – At least with my Airspy, I find the sensitivity a bit disappointing. The RSP is on the other hand excellent. I read on another forum one user claiming that the difference between the two was as much as 3 dB. I can’t verify the number, but I would not be surprised if it were about right
2. HF support – Absolutely fantastic, no up-converter needed
3. ZIF or Low IF. In ZIF mode, with calibration, you can get image free reception
4. Programmable filters. You can change the selectivity from as low as 200 KHz to the full bandwidth of 8 MHz, This is a huge plus for DX-ing if you live in an area with very strong local stations
The plus for the Airspy is that there is does cover the gap between 380 MHz and 430 MHz, with the RSP doesn’t. For some people, this is a really big deal.
Both seem to have about the same dynamic range, which isn’t surprising as despite using different tuners, the ADCs seem to be virtually identical.
So in summary, I think both are pretty good products with pluses and minuses, but at this new price point, as long as you don’t need to use 380 – 430 MHz, there is really only one I would choose now.
Many thanks for your comparison, Wyn. As I stated before, my impression of the SDRplay RSP is quite good so far. I live in a very RF quiet area–I am curious if anyone has used the SDRplay in urban areas, near local broadcast stations and experienced any overloading or serious imaging.