USRP at NIWeek 2017

The widest bandwidth, highest channel density USRP SDR

The Ettus USRP X440 software defined radio introduces a very different architecture from the majority of SDRs. X440 utilizes a direct sampling with balun-coupled access to the ADCs and DACs on the onboard Xilinx Zynq UltraScale+ RFSoC. As a result, the device is well suited to use as an intermediate frequency transceiver, connecting to external front ends for applications including satellite communications (SATCOM) prototyping, SATCOM ground station deployment, and mmWave or sub-THz 6G research.

With the change in architecture, the upper frequency of X440 is lower than usually found in USRPs. The USRP X440 can directly sample up to 4 GHz. However, the balun-coupled access to the RFSoC means that it is ideally suited to having an external up and/or downconverter connected, stretching the frequency range well beyond the limits typically accessible with software defined radios. Since the RFSoC can sample at up to 2 GSps per channel, this translates to an instantaneous bandwidth of 1.6 GHz – again a huge leap in bandwidth for USRP devices. Furthermore, with no RF front end circuitry inside the device, the USRP X440 is able to utilize all eight transmit and receive channels of the RFSoC, contributing to the highest channel density achieved on the USRP platform.