Buy RTL-SDR Dongles (RTL2832U)

Where to Buy RTLSDR RTL2832U DVB-T Tuner Dongles

The R820T2 RTL-SDR is currently the cheapest, most common and is the best in terms of general usability. The R820T2 has a frequency range of  24 – 1766 MHz (frequencies above 1.2 GHz may require cooling/heatsinking) and is fully 100% compatible with any software for the older R820T.

At RTL-SDR.com we sell significantly improved RTL-SDR dongles at low prices with free shipping. See our announcement post on our V3 units for a full overview of all the features, or scroll down for our store. Also see our V3 users guide for information on using special features of our dongle. The V3 feature datasheet is available here. Briefly, our dongles come with the following improvements:

  • <1 PPM temperature compensated oscillator (TCXO) – Accurate tuning and almost zero temperature drift (2 PPM max. initial offset, 0.5-1 PPM temperature drift)
  • SMA female antenna port – Most dongles use the less common MCX or PAL antenna ports. SMA is more common, so more adapters and antennas are available for it. It is also more durable and has lower RF insertion losses.
  • R820T2 tuner – More sensitive than the older R820T tuner. 100% compatible with software for the older R820T.
  • 4.5V USB powered bias tee - Can be enabled by running a simple program (see V3 users guide). This allows the RTL-SDR to power low noise amplifiers (like the LNA4ALL and HABAMP) and active antennas through the coax cable.
  • Experimental: HF Direct Sampling Mode - Listen to 500 kHz - 24 MHz with direct sampling. Simply connect an HF antenna to the SMA port, and choose the Q-branch to use. There is a built in 25 MHz low pass filter, but additional HF filters may be required for optimal performance (e.g. to knock out strong MW AM).
  • Aluminium case and passive cooling - These units come stock with an aluminium case and passive cooling via a silicon thermal pad.
  • Various additional improvements compared to other RTL-SDRs – Higher quality passive components, a choke on the USB line to reduce USB noise, a much improved PCB design for significantly less internal spurs and noise, various break-out pads, improved ESD protection, additional bypass capacitors and ferrite power line chokes, improved front end matching circuit and a better LDO.
US Shipping International Shipping
Purchase on Amazon and receive FREE domestic shipping for orders over $35 and free two day shipping for Prime subscribers! Or use our international cart for FREE shipping from China. FREE economy registered air mail from China! Paid express shipping also available. Please double check your address in PayPal before payment and enter it using English characters only.

International Shipping Options

Free Economy China Post Shipping: Takes anywhere from 1-8 weeks (usually 2-4 weeks, but near Christmas months or in some rare cases 6-8 weeks) to most countries. 

Swiss/ePacket/HK Post: Similar delivery time frames as China Post (1-8 weeks), but generally on average at the faster end of that scale. Generally more reliable. 

Fast Airmail: Recommended option. Typically goes via air cargo then to a local courier. These options are only available for some countries and are generally a few days to weeks faster (est. 1-5 weeks at most). More reliable. Some countries can choose untracked for a lower price at your risk.

Express Mail: Shipped with DHL/UPS/EMS/Aramex. Fast delivery times to most countries, typically 1-2 weeks.
Via Amazon: Amazon now offers international shipping for our products. Countries geographically close to the USA may experience faster shipping if ordering on Amazon.

 

Local Resellers

We now have resellers selling a selection of our products who are based locally in the [UK], [Germany], [India], [Italy], [Spain], [Brazil], [France], [Ukraine], [Poland] & [New Zealand] who can provide fast local tax free shipping. Please note that these are independent resellers who may only carry a selection of our stock, and can charge their own independent prices.

 

Current International Shipping Notes

Christmas/NY: As Christmas/NY is approaching air mail delivery times will begin to slow down significantly. We thank you for your patience in waiting for delivery. 

Sweden: Please be aware that the local customs/postal agency in Sweden appears to have huge delays at the moment.

Restrictions: Note that we cannot ship to countries with active restrictions like Iran and NK. These orders will be cancelled.

 

RTL-SDR Blog R820T2 RTL2832U 1PPM TCXO SMA Software Defined Radio with Dipole Antenna Kit
RTL-SDR Blog R820T2 RTL2832U 1PPM TCXO SMA Software Defined Radio with Dipole Antenna Kit

Includes 1x RTL-SDR Blog brand R820T2 RTL2832U 1PPM TCXO SMA V3 Dongle, 1x Dipole Antenna Base with 60cm RG174, 2x 23cm to 1m telescopic antenna, 2x 5cm to 13cm telescopic antenna, 1x 3 meter RG174 extension cable, 1x Flexible Tripod Mount, 1x Suction Cup Mount.

Several improvements over generic brands including use of the R820T2 tuner, improved component tolerances, a 1 PPM temperature compensated oscillator (TCXO), SMA F connector, aluminium case with passive cooling, bias tee circuit and break out pads for easy direct sampling modification.

*NEW*: Comes with our new portable Dipole antenna kit. Great for beginners as it allows for terrestrial and satellite reception. Easy to mount outdoors and designed for portable and temporary outside usage. Please do not use outside during poor weather conditions.

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
RTL-SDR Blog R820T2 RTL2832U 1PPM TCXO SMA Software Defined Radio (Dongle Only)
RTL-SDR Blog V3 R820T2 RTL2832U 1PPM TCXO SMA Software Defined Radio (Dongle Only)

Includes 1x RTL-SDR Blog brand R820T2 RTL2832U 1PPM TCXO SMA V3 Dongle.

Several improvements over generic brands including use of the R820T2 tuner, improved component tolerances, a 1 PPM temperature compensated oscillator (TCXO), SMA F connector, aluminium case with passive cooling, bias tee circuit and break out pads for easy direct sampling modification.

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
RTL-SDR Blog Dipole Antenna Kit
RTL-SDR Blog Multipurpose Dipole Antenna Kit

Includes 1x Dipole Antenna Base with 60cm RG174, 2x 23cm to 1m telescopic antenna, 2x 5cm to 13cm telescopic antenna, 1x 3 meter RG174 extension cable, 1x Flexible Tripod Mount, 1x Suction Cup Mount.

Our new portable Dipole antenna set with mounting kit. Allows you to more easily get the antenna up high and outside where reception will improve significantly. Dipole base mounts onto a standard 1/4" camera screw, so can be mounted on to a variety of already available mounts. Included is a flexible tripod and suction cup mount.

Designed for portable and temporary outside usage. Please do not use outside during poor weather conditions.

Amazon USA local in stock (low qty).
Chinese worldwide warehouse out of stock. New stock in production.

 
FlightAware ProStick Plus (ADS-B Specialty RTL-SDR)
FlightAware ProStick Plus (ADS-B Specialty RTL-SDR)

Includes 1x FlightAware Brand Prostick Plus ADS-B Specialty RTL-SDR.

This is a modified RTL-SDR dongle made specifically for ADS-B reception (aircraft tracking - see our tutorial here). What makes it special is its built in 1090 MHz low noise figure LNA and SAW filter which significantly improves ADS-B reception. If you are mainly interested in ADS-B reception then this is one of the best dongles for the task. See our review of the unit here.

Produced by FlightAware.com for their aircraft tracking service and resold by us at RTL-SDR Blog with free shipping for international customers. USA customers can purchase it from directly from FlightAware on Amazon.

Amazon USA local in stock (Sold by FlightAware).
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
Stratux RTL-SDR (Low Power RTL-SDR)
Stratux RTL-SDR (Low Power RTL-SDR) - Limited Stock Only

Includes 1x Stratux Low Power RTL-SDR.

This is a modified RTL-SDR dongle designed for low power consumption. It uses a switch mode power regulator instead of a linear regulator which results in about 100 mA lower power usage. The trade off is additional RF noise in VHF, though these have been designed carefully so the noise is actually LESS than most other 'nano' sized dongles.

Stratux RTL-SDR dongles are designed for use in ADS-B reception on small aircraft, but they can also be used by anyone requiring lower power usage. For example on solar powered Raspberry Pi units. Note that these units have no enclosure, and do not have a TCXO. When installing in Zadig these show up as "Low Power V2".

Produced by stratux.me and resold by us at RTL-SDR Blog with free shipping for international customers. US customers can purchase from Amazon directly from Stratux.

Amazon USA local in stock (Sold by Stratux).
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
Dreamcatcher
Dreamcatcher (Computing Board + RTL-SDR)

Includes 1x Dreamcatcher PCB.

This is the Outernet Dreamcatcher board. It is an RTL-SDR and computing board all in one. There are two SMA ports on board. The first has an L-band LNA and filter on it, and the second is unfiltered for reception of any frequency.

The boards are very useful for setting up a remote monitoring station, for example for ADS-B or as an Outernet receiver.

Note that this is a commission sale for the link below will take you to the Outernet site for purchase. They will handle the sale & shipping.

 
Outernet L-Band Active Patch Antenna
Outernet L-Band Active Patch Antenna

Includes 1x Outernet L-Band Active Patch Antenna

This is an L-Band patch antenna for receiving satellite frequencies between 1525 MHz and 1559 MHz. It has an on board filter and low noise figure LNA to maximize reception.

Useful for monitoring Inmarsat and Alphasat L-band satellites. For example the Outernet or STD-C data signals.

Note that this is a commission sale for the link below will take you to the Outernet site for purchase. They will handle the sale & shipping.

 
ThumbNet N3
Nongles N3 (Shipped by Nongles)

This is the Nongles N3 RTL-SDR with full metal enclosure and shielded PCB. Invented for the ThumbNet educational and low cost orbital launch program. Main defining features include a separate 5V input which allows you to power it with a linear power supply for ultra low noise operation, double shielding and F-Type connector.

READ! IMPORTANT SHIPPING NOTE: Please order this item separately from others and select free shipping in the cart. The shipping cost for the USA ($4.5) and Worldwide ($10) is automatically added. Do not add extra shipping please.

This item will be processed and shipped once a week from the Nongles team in the USA.

 
RTL-SDR Blog Broadcast FM Band-Stop Filter
RTL-SDR Blog Broadcast FM Band-Stop Filter

Includes 1x RTL-SDR Blog Broadcast FM Band-Stop Filter and 1x SMA male to SMA male adapter.

Blocks the broadcast FM band between 88 - 108 MHz with over 50dB of attenuation. Insertion loss is less than 0.5 dB between 0 - 1 GHz, and mostly less than 1.5 dB between 1 - 3 GHz. A broadcast FM block filter can help if you have very strong broadcasts in your area that are overloading the SDR dongle. Also known as "FM Trap". Note, for RX use only.

See the product release page, for more information and tests.

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
RTL-SDR Blog Broadcast AM High Pass Filter
RTL-SDR Blog Broadcast AM High Pass Filter

Includes 1x RTL-SDR Blog Broadcast AM High Pass Filter and 1x SMA male to SMA male adapter.

Designed to block the broadcast AM band between 500 kHz - 1.7 MHz with over 50 dB of attenuation. The 3 dB roll-off point is between 2.5 - 2.6 MHz. Works great with the direct sampling mode on our V3 dongles. This is a high pass filter and not a notch, so VLF will not work. Note, for RX use only.

See the product release page, for more information and tests.

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
SDRplay RSP1 Aluminum Enclosure Upgrade
SDRplay RSP1 Aluminum Enclosure Upgrade

Includes 1x Black aluminum metal enclosure with two labelled side panels, 1x Broadcast FM band-stop filter plus SMA Male to SMA Male barrel adapter, 1x Black semi-hardshell carry case, 1x Thermal pad to keep the RSP-1 cool and mechanically stable inside the enclosure and 1x Accessory set including enclosure screws, GND lug bolt set and 3M anti-slip rubber feet.

Can be used to upgrade the SDRplay RSP-1 to a metal enclosure. Helps block RF interference entering the RSP-1 PCB directly.

Note that owners of the very first RSP-1's with F-Type connectors may require an additional F-Type to SMA pigtail adapter, or a MMCX to SMA pigtail to be able to fit the SMA hole. [Installation Instructions]

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
RTL-SDR Blog SMA Pigtail Antenna Adapter Set
RTL-SDR Blog SMA Pigtail Antenna Adapter Set

Includes 1x SMA Pigtail adapter set (6 adapters)

Set of six SMA pigtail adapters with 20cm of RG316 cabling. Contains five SMA to female (Type N, UHF, BNC, PAL, Type F) adapters and one bonus SMA male to SMA male adapter which is often used to connect to devices like upconverters.

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
RTL-SDR Blog SMA Straight Antenna Adapter Set
RTL-SDR Blog SMA Straight Antenna Adapter Set

Includes 1x SMA straight adapter set (6 adapters)

Set of six straight adapters with. Contains five SMA to female (Type N, UHF, BNC, PAL, Type F) adapters and one bonus SMA male to SMA male adapter which is often used to connect to devices like upconverters. Less loss than the pigtail adapters.

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
RTL-SDR Blog MCX Pigtail Antenna Adapter Set
RTL-SDR Blog MCX Pigtail Antenna Adapter Set

Includes 1x MCX Pigtail adapter set (7 adapters)

Great for if you have the older or other brand dongles that used the MCX antenna connector. Contains 6 MCX to female (Type N, UHF, BNC, PAL, Type F, SMA) adapters and one bonus MCX to SMA male adapter which is often used to connect to devices like upconverters. These do not fit onto our new SMA RTL-SDRs, these are for the older MCX style dongles.

Amazon USA local in stock.
Chinese worldwide warehouse in stock.

 
The Hobbyist's Guide to the RTL-SDR: Really Cheap Software Defined Radio (Book)
The Hobbyist's Guide to the RTL-SDR: Really Cheap Software Defined Radio (Book)

A comprehensive guide to the RTL2832U RTL-SDR software defined radio by the authors of the RTL-SDR Blog. This book is about tips and tutorials that show you how to get the most out of your RTL-SDR dongle.

The paperback includes the eBook via the Kindle matchbook program. Amazon Prime customers can borrow the book for FREE. Also available for purchase from Amazon sites in UKDE, FR, IT, ES, JP, IN, CA, BR and MX.

 

If for some reason you feel like you don't trust us then please see our Amazon reviews from our previous RTL-SDR model product sales and our Amazon store seller feedback.

Shipping Information / Policy (Click to Expand)

If you suspect a lost postal item please contact your local postal agency first and inquire there. Usually they have more information than we have. If they confirm it as lost or not received after a long time then please let us know at [email protected] and we can open an investigation on this side as well. Usually we must wait at least 6 weeks from the date posted before we can open a lost parcel investigation.

USA

For US customers we highly recommend purchasing our products from Amazon. Amazon will provide you with fast local shipping and shipping is free for orders over $35. If you are a Prime subscriber you also get free 2 day shipping.

US customers may also purchase from our international checkout and choose free shipping from China and we will send via priority air mail (ePacket EMS).

International (All countries outside the USA except sanctioned countries like Iran and NK)

Please enter your address using English characters only!

Please note that we have an approximate 1-2 day working day processing time before international parcels get shipped (even express orders).

Note that we cannot ship to internationally sanctioned countries such as Iran and NK. These orders will be cancelled.

International orders bought on our cart will be shipped from our warehouse in China. Shipping is free). Shipping can take anywhere from 1 - 8 weeks, but typically it is between 2 - 4 weeks. It will normally reach the higher end of the scale during the peak season which is the months surrounding December. Please note that delivery time is also highly dependent on the efficiency of the postal and customs agencies within your country, and please understand that this processing time is totally out of our hands. Countries such as South Africa, Italy, Canada, Brazil, and middle eastern countries are known to sometimes have extremely slow postal and customs agencies. If you need faster shipping please select an express option.

International buyers are reminded that as with any international parcel you are fully responsible for any duties or customs clearance fees required by your country, and that you take full responsibility for the legality of importing. If you have questions about the declared value and customs fees please feel free to contact us at rtlsdrblog_AT_gmail.com.

Please watch the tracking information and contact your postal agency if there are any significant delays. If your parcel does not arrive within 4 weeks (6 weeks during December/Christmas period and for known slow countries) and the tracking looks stuck, then please contact us at rtlsdrblog_AT_gmail.com and we will open a postal investigation and resend or refund your item. 

Express air courier shipping is also available but this costs much more and we only recommend this for larger shipments, or for countries that don't support priority air mail. With this option we will use either DHL, UPS, EMS or Aramex air couriers. Depending on your country your package should arrive within 2-8 business days with express shipping (plus a 1-3 working day processing time). If you wish to use this option then please select your country from the shipping options in the cart. Note that most express couriers will not deliver to a PO box and they may charge additional fees for duty/customs processing. Also please note that there is often a slightly longer initial processing time with express couriers, as they are often slow to provide us with the tracking information. You can expect the tracking info to be provided 1-3 working days after the "in processing" status is sent.

Note that depending on the weight, cost and destination country of your order we may upgrade your shipment to a faster shipping method for free. We will normally only do this for larger orders.

Shipping status meanings:

All shipping status updates will come through an email from PayPal. Please double check your spam folder if you're not receiving these emails.

'In process' means that your order and address information has been checked and sent to the warehouse and the parcel is being packed. A tracking number will follow usually by the next 1-2 business days.

'Shipped' means that the order has been shipped and can be tracked with the provided tracking number.

How do I track my shipment?

Please note that tracking updates may initially take a few days to start working after receiving the shipped status.

If sent via registered air, then mail will usually be sent either by postal services: China Post, China Post EMS Air Mail, Deutsche Post, Hong Kong Post, PostNL or Swiss Post. You can initially track the parcel on their respective websites, or on a universal tracking website like 17track.net. However, once the parcel enters your own country tracking on these sites may stop when the parcel is handed over to the local post office, who will usually attach their own tracking sticker. You can then track your parcel on your local post office website. In some countries you may need to call your post office to get an updated tracking number.

Product Support (Click to Expand)

If you have a general question about RTL-SDRs or SDRs we ask you to please ask in our forums.

If you need technical support please first ensure that you have been through our Quickstart guide and troubleshooting section further down on it, as well as our V3 users guide. Common questions like how to use the HF mode are explained on the V3 users guide. 

If you have a question about shipping of an item please first read the shipping policy (above) and see if it answers your question. If it is a request for tracking details please first check your old/deleted/spam mails for the tracking email which is provided by PayPal. You should have two mails from PayPal. The first showing ‘in process’, and the second 1-2 working days after showing the tracking details.

If you suspect a lost postal item please contact your local postal agency first and inquire there. Usually they have more information than we have. If they confirm it as lost or not received after a long time then please let us know and we can open an investigation on this side as well. Usually we must wait at least 6 weeks from the date posted before we can open a lost parcel investigation.

For everything else such as lost postal items, warranty claims and support inquiries that aren’t covered by the quickstart or troubleshooting guide then please contact us at [email protected]. We aim to always reply within 1-2 business days.

Warranty Information (Click to Expand)

We will provide 6 months warranty on manufacturing defects. Please note that if you do any modifications to the PCB (e.g. soldering on it) then any warranty will be voided, so please ensure your dongle is working before trying these.

If you suspect a manufacturing fault please first ensure that you have been through our Quickstart guide and troubleshooting section further down on it, as well as our V3 users guide. Common questions like how to use the HF mode are explained on the V3 users guide. 

If you've been through the troubleshooting guide and still suspect a fault please contact us through Amazon if you bought there, or email us at [email protected] if you bought from our cart. Be sure to include your order number and name. Please include details of the fault and a picture of the fault if it is physical damage. If the unit is faulty we will issue either a full refund or send a new unit out depending on your preference.

Wholesale Information (Click to Expand)

If you want to buy 10+ units please contact us directly at [email protected] for a wholesale quote.

Alternative Payment (Click to Expand)

If you don't want to use a credit card or PayPal we will accept payment through Bitcoin for orders of three or more items only. Please email us at rtlsdrblog_AT_gmail.com to arrange payment.

 

Recommended accessories from other sellers

Antennas

Probably the most important part of a radio system is the antenna. There is no one size fits all antenna, every different design will have a trade off. For instance, wide band antennas can receive more frequencies, but will have less gain at any one particular frequency. If you want to receive everything then get a wide band antenna. If you want to receive one frequency with optimal reception, find a tuned narrow band antenna.

Discone Antenna
Discone Antenna

Discones are wideband antennas. This makes them ideal for the RTL-SDR as using a Discone will allow you to receive at almost any frequency with decent performance.

 
FlightAware ADS-B Antenna
FlightAware ADS-B Antenna

A 1090 MHz ADS-B antenna from FlightAware. Is weather proofed and has 5 dB of gain. Uses an N-type antenna connector. See our review post for more information.

 
Outernet L-Band Patch Antenna
Outernet L-Band Patch Antenna

If you're wanting to get into receiving and decoding L-Band satellites such as Inmarsat, Iridium and Outernet then this is the easiest way to get started. Combine it with the Outernet LNA for best results in the Iridium and Outernet bands. See our review post for more information.

Upconverters

The lowest frequency an RTL-SDR can comfortably tune to is about 24 MHz. An upconverter allows you to use your RTL-SDR on HF frequencies which are between 0 - 30 MHz. They work by shifting frequencies between 0 - 30 MHz "up" by a fixed amount into a frequency range that is receivable by the RTL-SDR.

Spyverter
SpyVerter Upconverter

Currently we recommend the SpyVerter as the upconverter of choice. Although it was designed to be used with the Airspy, it works perfectly with the RTL-SDR. It uses a 120 MHz oscillator, has excellent filtering and can be powered via USB cable or via the bias-tee on our RTL-SDR Blog dongles. The SpyVerter uses an innovative new architecture that reduces overloading, has better SNR than other options and can operate all the way down to DC.

With the above performance and features, the included metal case and adapters and at a similar or even lower price compared to other upconverters we think this one is the best value. See our review post for more information.

 
SV1AFN Upconverter
SV1AFN Upconverter

An alternative to the SpyVerter is the upconverter designed by SV1AFN.

It based on the ADE-1 mixer chip, uses a 200 MHz oscillator, has good filtering and works almost down to DC.

 
Ham-It-Up Upconverter
Ham-It-Up Upconverter

Another recommended option is the Ham-It-Up Upconverter.

This one like the SV1AFN is also based on the ADE-1 mixer, but uses 125 MHz oscillator and is based on an open source design. There is also a metal case available on Amazon and eBay. However, currently we would recommend the SpyVerter or SV1AFN over this option.

RF Filters

RF filters connect between your antenna and RTL-SDR dongle. They help to significantly reduce out of band interference and noise which is very helpful when trying to improve signal strength.

118 - 138 MHz Air Band Bandpass Filter
118 - 138 MHz Air Band Bandpass Filter

If you are monitoring ACARS or air traffic signals then you may want an air band bandpass filter if you find that you have lots of interference from nearby stations such as FM broadcasts and Pagers.

 
FlightAware ADS-B Filter
FlightAware ADS-B Filter

FlightAware sell a very affordable ADS-B band pass filter. Many users have reported significantly improved reception when they started using this filter. This is probably the best filter to get if you are interested in ADS-B. See our review post for more information.

 
ADS-B HABamp LNA + Filter Combo
ADS-B HABamp LNA + Filter Combo

We also highly recommend the ADS-B HABAmp for receiving ADS-B signals. This is a filter + LNA combination that works very well and will significantly improve ADS-B performance.

We've tested these ourselves with the activatable bias tee in our units and found them to definitely work very well.

 
Adam's ADS-B/H-Line/FLARM Filters
Adam's ADS-B/H-Line/FLARM Filters

Adam (9A4QV) also sells some good low cost filters for ADSB, Hydrogen Line Radio Astronomy or FLARM.

The Hydrogen line is a physics phenomona that can be observed with an RTL-SDR dongle and FLARM is a protocol similar to ADS-B but used more often with gliders and helicopters.

 
Multi HF Bandpass Filter
Multi HF Bandpass Filter

This product is great for if you are using an upconverter together with your RTL-SDR, or other SDR. Contains seven band pass filters that range from 1.6 - 2.5 MHz, 2.5 - 4.7 MHz, 4.7 - 7.5 MHz, 7.5 - 14.5 MHz, 14.5 - 21.5 MHz, 21.5 - 33 MHz and 33 - 56 MHz.

Low Noise Amplifiers

If you have long runs of coax cable then a low noise amplifier (LNA) can help to significantly improve your reception. Coax cable is lossy and the longer it is the more your received signal is attenuated. By adding an LNA near the antenna this loss can be reduced.

LNA4ALL
LNA4ALL

The LNA4ALL is a very affordable wide band low noise amplifier that is very commonly used with the RTL-SDR. Has the ability to be powered externally from any voltage between 6V - 9V, or with a simple modification with 3V - 5V in bias tee mode.

We have tested the LNA4ALL in bias tee mode with the activatable bias tee in our units and found it to work well.

 
Other LNA's
Other LNA's

There are also several low noise amplifier circuits that can be found very cheaply for sale on eBay and most will do a good job. Unfortunately most don't provide a bias tee option like the LNA4ALL or HABamp does.

 
ADS-B HABamp LNA + Filter Combo
ADS-B HABamp LNA + Filter Combo

We also highly recommend the ADS-B HABAmp for receiving ADS-B signals. This is a filter + LNA combination that works very well and will significantly improve ADS-B performance.

We've tested these ourselves with the activatable bias tee in our units and found them to definitely work very well.

 
Outernet L-Band LNA
Outernet L-Band LNA

If you're wanting to receive Iridium or Outernet L-band signals then this is the best LNA for the job. It works between 1525 - 1559 MHz, with a gain of 34 dB. It has an on-board filter as well to remove out of band interference.

Must be powered via a bias tee, and works fine with the bias tee on our V1, V2 or V3 dongles. See our review post here for more information.

Other Accessories

Active USB Extension Cable
Active USB Extension Cable

Ideally you want to get the RTL-SDR dongle as close to the antenna as possible. Normal USB cables have a length limit of about 5m before they stop working, but with an active USB cable this can be extended up to 10 to 15 meters.

We recommend these Monoprice cables as they have been reported to work successfully with the RTL-SDR dongle.

 
Active USB Extension Cable
RG6 Coaxial Cable

We recommend using RG6 coaxial cable for most links between your antenna and RTL-SDR. RG6 is low loss cable and it is also very cheap because it is used commercially with satellite TV installations.

RG6 is 75 Ohm cable. Note that the mismatch between 50 and 75 Ohm impedances is completely negligible for RX applications.

 
Clip on USB Ferrite Core
Clip on USB Ferrite Core

Noise and interference can sometimes be induced in the USB cable itself which can show up in the RF spectrum. To stop this noise use clip on ferrite cores on the USB cable. These cores help to suppress unwanted currents in the USB shield.

 
Raspberry Pi 3
Raspberry Pi 3

A Raspberry Pi is a credit card sized computer that runs Linux, or even Windows. With it you can connect an RTL-SDR, run a server, and then remotely send a signal or processed data such as ADS-B aircraft locations back via WiFi or Ethernet cable.

 
USB OTG Cable
USB OTG Cable

A USB on-the-go (OTG) cable is required to use the RTL-SDR on Android phones with software like SDR Touch and Wavesink. We recommend trying to find cables that come with power plugs so that you can use it with a power pack. Using an RTL-SDR can increase CPU usage which can quickly drain a mobiles battery.

 
9:1 Balun
9:1 Balun

If you are using a long wire or random wire antenna with a HF modded RTL-SDR or an upconverter you should use a 9:1 impedance transformer to get good SWR.

There are also several other alternatives available on eBay that use a larger iron core.

 
Wideband Noise Source
Wideband Noise Source

A wideband noise source can be used together with an RTL-SDR dongle to perform measurements on filters and to measure the SWR of an antenna.

See our tutorial here for more information.

 

Recommended alternative SDRs

Airspy
Airspy

We think the Airspy is the SDR with the best RX capabilities in the mid priced SDR market right now. It really shines when used in tough RF environments, such as those found in city and suburban areas. The Airspy is an excellent upgrade from an RTL-SDR dongle. Requires the SpyVerter upconverter add on to receive HF signals.

See our review post for a comprehensive comparison between the Airspy, SDRplay RSP and HackRF.

 
SDRplay RSP
SDRplay RSP

Another good mid range SDR is the SDRplay RSP. This SDR is great value for the price and can receive HF frequencies without an upconverter, but it not as good as the Airspy when running in tough RF environments with many strong signals.

See our review post for a comprehensive comparison between the Airspy, SDRplay RSP and HackRF.

 
Nooelec Nano 2+ RTL-SDR
Nooelec Nano 2+

This is an alternative RTL-SDR to the version we sell. This RTL-SDR is very small and is great for using with portable equipment such as mobile phones and tablets. Costs more than ours, is much noisier and doesn't have as many features but it also comes with a TCXO.

 
E4000 RTL-SDR Dongle
E4000 RTL-SDR Dongle

The E4000 is more expensive as it has become rare since it has gone out of production. It has a frequency range of 52 – 2200 MHz with a gap from 1100 MHz to 1250 MHz.

The E4000 RTL-SDR dongle can still be bought from Nooelec on Amazon as well. Due to its rareness, the cost of the E4000 is slowly rising. These dongles used to sell for $20, but are now going for around $50-$100! Best to get them now if you need them before they sell out completely. Though note that for most cases an R820T2 unit is usually better.

 
HackRF One
HackRF One

The HackRF One is a relatively low cost TX/RX capable SDR. It is designed for radio experimenters and it has a very wide band frequency range from 1 MHz to 6 GHz, and a wide bandwidth of up to 20 MHz and an 8-Bit ADC. It is probably the most versatile SDR that exists at the moment, but in a compromise it does not have the best quality RX or TX performance. Thus it is perfect for experiments like reverse engineering and testing RF devices, but it is not intended to be used as a commercial radio or ham radio.

247 comments

  1. Jason Doss

    Order Number:RG651396012CN
    Tracking shows it getting to the U.S. around the 8th. but I haven’t received it yet.

  2. Dave

    Could you provide an update on when the RTL-SDR V3 kit will be available thru Amazon? Its been 2 weeks since the last estimate.

  3. J.Thomas

    Hello. I recently purchased the RTL-SDR v3 dongle and have been having a great time exploring it’s functions and capabilities. I have been trying to reverse engineer an old GM key-less entry FOB for a truck I no longer have just for educational purposes, not to preform a re-play attack, but to decode the signal and read the sequence of numbers/characters being sent, but I am having some difficulty when it comes to recognizing the type of modulation used from the waveform pattern. I have identified it’s operating frequency and successfully captured several good samples of the signal it produces, but it does not appear to match any examples I have found on the internet and there is virtually no technical data on the FOB itself available. Can you recommend a reference source (book or website) that might provide me with low level information on how the various digital modulation schemes work?

  4. Tito Castillo

    It’s October 11th and it looks like the trl-sdr is not yet available through amazon (it says available in october). Can you tell us when it will be available?

    • admin

      It was supposed to be in stock at the start of October, but it’s currently delayed by US customs hold ups. They’ve selected the shipping container with our and other’s goods for a randomly selected intensive exam…We’re expecting them to release them in a few days though, then they should be on Amazon within 1-2 weeks from then.

    • admin

      It was supposed to be in stock at the start of October, but it’s currently delayed by US customs hold ups. We’re expecting them to release them in a few days though, then they should be on Amazon within 1-2 weeks from then.

  5. AlexP

    Win DLL by osmocom (RelWithDebInfo) seems not export any I2c control function…
    there are alternatives maybe ? also no function to control the general purpose bus
    it could be useful if supported in software…

  6. Sauro

    Hello.

    I’m a blind bcl listener, I plugged the RTLSDR Blog 3 dongle on Adroid with SDR Touch app, because the Windows and Mac programs are not accessible with the screen reader software.
    I would like to receive some BCL signal in am, and ham radio in ssb, but unfortunately I do not get any useful signal.
    I set preference / direct sampling to the “branch q direct sampling” function useful for short waves,
    I use a wire antenna of 10 meters, and with my Sony icf 7600 I received many signals in same frequences.

    Tanks.

  7. Oscar Corona

    Hello, I have a house on the beach 10 miles from the city, I have an antenna of 11 meters for citizen band (27 MHz) to communicate to the city, a VHF antenna for Marine Band (156 MHz) and a UHF antenna 462 MHz) for recreational use, I am interested in buying the RTL-SDR kit with the 2 antennas, but I have some doubts,
    Do I need something extra to listen to these frequencies ?
    Can I listen those frequencies with the 2 antennas included in the kit ?
    Can I use my own antennas, which adapters i need ?

    Thanks

    • admin

      If you already have those nice antennas set up then you can use them. The RTL-SDR uses an SMA female port, so you’d just need to get an adapter for whatever connector your current antennas are using. The included whips can cover multiple frequencies if you change the lengths to the resonant for the frequency you are listening too, but ideally you want to get them outside where I assume your other antenna setups already are.

  8. Jon

    I ordered the RTL-SDR and antenna kit with economy shipping from China, and it arrived in the UK 5 days after dispatch, which is great.
    I am completely new to amateur radios, but setting up SDR# and the dongle was very simple, and I am surprised how good a reception I am getting on airband – even with the antenna indoors.
    I have made a minor alteration to the set-up which has enabled me to hear weaker signals much better. Between my laptop and the RTL-SDR dongle, I added a 2 meter USB extension lead and moved the dongle away from my laptop. I then added ferrite chokes to each end of the USB cable.

  9. mesodef

    Is there any updated ETA on when the RTL-SDR Blog v3 w/ antenna will be back in stock on amazon? I would like to order one and I’m debating ordering from china vs waiting for amazon stock (preferably choosing the faster option).

    • admin

      It’s hard to say because we just don’t know how long the import will take (sometimes it’s fast, sometimes not). Best case within a week, worst case probably about 2 weeks.

  10. Hans J. Albertsson

    You say repeatedly that we should buy these items from “worldwide chinese warehouse”, but there is no link, so HOW?

  11. PuJo

    Just checked Amazon 6/21/17 and the LTR-SDR BLOG is out of stock. When will these units be available again?
    Thanks,
    PuJo

  12. kss

    It would be nice if I can purchase the SMA telescopic antennas that are bundled with the rtl-sdr.com SDR sticks (separately). Do you have any plan on doing this?

    • admin

      Sorry no plans for now. Later in the year we’ll have a simple telescopic dipole kit which will be better than the stock antennas that we have now, and we plan to sell that separately.

    • admin

      Hello, thanks for your order.

      You can track the parcel at 17track.net, the sending post official website, or the website of the recipient postal service in your country. The tracking number would have been sent in a Shipping Confirmation email from PayPal. If you lost it, please email us with your order details to have it sent out again.

  13. David Bradley

    Need adapters – mcx female to mcx female for projects. can anyone point to adapters with ‘reasonable’ prices.

  14. John Leonardelli

    i bought the silver metal case upgrade and never received it. impossible now to track or recover my money. DO NOT BUY FROM THEM AND GET IT OFF EBAY AS THEY WILL SCAM YOU. WHAT A JOKE. they run the 90 day scheme to screw you over so u cannot complain

    • admin

      90-day scheme? You should have up to six months to open a claim on PayPal. We sell on eBay too, and the same protections provided by PayPal apply there and here as well. And we’re more than happy to issue a refund at our expense if a parcel gets lost in the mail, but we haven’t had any contact from you apart from here.

      Secondly, I just checked your tracking details (looked up your order from your name), and it shows that it was successfully delivered at your address on 3 April 2017 after 14 days in transit. If it’s missing from your mailbox you should contact us and also contact your countries postal agency to open an investigation ASAP.

    • happy customer

      I bought the AM BC filter, which was delivered to the east coast USA, from the Chinese warehouse in less than 2 weeks. It works perfectly and is very well made. No scams here!

Leave a Reply to James Cancel reply

You may use the following HTML:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>