DIY: The Ultimate QRP Radio


UPDATE: I built this little radio and it’s awesome! I will post about it soon!

What is QRP anyways?

In amateur radio, QRP is transmitting at reduced power while at the same time, trying to maximize range. I wont get into details abour QRP because I am not an expert. But an example of this is having a HF radio running at 5 watts and being able to speak to someone over a 1,000 miles away. 

A couple different options….

The Yaesu FT-817ND is a perfect example running at only 5 watts. I have seen Hams make contacts with this from New Jersey all the way to Spain! The Elekraft KX1 is another radio that runs at only 4 watts and is able to transmit very long distances. And if you do a Google Search for QRP Radios, I am sure that you can find huge list on more QRP Radios.

So what is the Best QRP radio……?

The question is subjective and so, I will answer it. The best QRP radio for me would have to be portable, battery operated, and it would look something like this.

QRP Radio

This is the an inexpensive QRP Radio. It has one jack for headphones or speakers, another for a Morse code key, a dc power jack, and a BNC antenna connector. It is tuned for the 40M band which is restricted to CW. I found it on ebay and I decided to buy a couple of these little radios to mess with. They ship from China but if you click here, or go to my Store tab on top, you can buy it from the US, and get it within a couple of days. This is what it looks like out of the package.




This will be a small project for me and it will force me to learn Morse. Is this QRP radio a Yaesu or MFJ? No. But for the price, its definitely worth picking up. You can easily make this an Altoids project, throw it in your hiking backpack, and your good to go. As soon as its built, I will post a review on it.



  1. Small correction. Only the low-frequency tip of the 40M band is for CW. The rest of the band is divided by informal agreement into sub-bands for SSB, data modes, etc. That’s true of most other ham bands. This radio, however, only covers the CW area of 40 meters. You can get the radio for others bands, too. Pretty good starter radio, and modifications are possible within limits. You wouldn’t want to run it through an amplifier for more power, because it puts out a lot of interference that could make you run afoul of other hams and even the FCC.


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