FLEX-1500 2016-10-14T13:45:08+00:00

The Entry Level QRP Software Defined Radio and Ideal IF Deck for VHF-Microwave Operation

The FLEX-1500™ is a low-cost, low-wattage SDR that is positioned to allow ham radio operators the ability to experience the incredible capabilities and just plain fun of operating a software defined radio without breaking the budget.  The FLEX-1500 is packed with features that make it ideally positioned to be the ultimate low cost, high performance IF deck for VHF-microwave transverter operation.  With a price point set below $700 USD and the ongoing improvements and upgrades provided by PowerSDR, the FLEX-1500 is by far the best value of any entry level amateur radio available today.

FLEX-1500 Feature Highlights

  • 5W nominal QRP power amp, 160-6m
  • All band and all mode transceiver with general coverage receive
  • Internal high performance 16-bit A/D and D/A converters (no sound card required)
  • Designed specifically as an IF for transverter use
  • Separate receive antenna port
  • 4th order band pass filters for out of band signal rejection
  • ± 2.5 ppm TCXO for stable frequency operation
  • 10 MHz input for an external high stability clock source
  • High gain RF pre-amplifiers for increased sensitivity
  • Light weight and small footprint designed for portability (4” x 7” x 2.4”)
  • Connects to the PC using a USB v1.1 interface
  • MARS/CAP capable (requires license)
  • RoHS compliant manufacturing

Receiver Specifications:

  • Architecture: Direct conversion, quadrature down-sampling to baseband
  • ADC Sampling Rate: 48 ksps
  • ADC Resolution: 16-bit@48 ksps, 20 kHz bandwidth
  • ADC Dynamic Range: 92dBA
  • Rx Frequency Range: 490 kHz - 54 MHz (operating below 490 kHz requires external, customer provided filters to eliminate images); 160 - 6m (specified performance in amateur bands only)
  • MDS: MDS (typ)@ 500Hz BW; Preamp OFF@14MHz is -116 dBm; Preamp +20dB@14MHz is -127 dBm; Preamp +30dB@50MHz is -138 dBM
  • IMD DR3 (dynamic range): 86 dB@14 MHz with 2 kHz or less tone spacing
  • IP3: +21 dBm@14 MHz with preamp off at 2 kHz or less tone spacing (S5 IM3 method)
  • IP2: +71dBm with preamp off at 2kHz at 2 kHz spacing
  • Selectivity (-6 /-60 dB): CW 500 Hz: 500/640; SSB 2.4 kHz: 2.39/2.54; AM 6.6 kHz: 6.60/6.74; (at 48 ksps/2048 Buffer Length)
  • Image Rejection: >100 dB with Wide Band Image Rejection Active

Transmitter Specifications:

  • Transmitter Frequency Range: 160 - 6m (amateur bands only)
  • Power Output: 5 watts nominal PEP CW and SSB at 13.8vDC input voltage; 5 Watts nominal PEP AM = 3.3 Watts nominal AM
  • Transverter IF Output Power: +0dBm Typical, +5 dBm max.
  • Emission Modes Types: A1A (CWU, CWL), J3E (USB, LSB), A3E (AM), F3E (FM), DIGITAL (DIGU, DIGL)
  • Harmonic Radiation: Better than -48 dB (160 - 10m amateur bands); Better than -60 dB (6m amateur band)
  • SSB Carrier Suppression: At least 55 dB below peak output
  • Undesired Sideband Suppression: At least 55 dB below peak output
  • Audio Response (SSB): Flat Response 20 Hz to 20 kHz, 3-band or 10-band Software Equalizer
  • 3rd-Order IMD: Better than -33 dB below PEP @ 14.2 MHz 5 Watts PEP
  • Microphone Impedance: 600 Ohms (unbalanced)
  • FlexWire Audio Line-In and Line-Out Impedance: 1000 Ohms

General Specifications:

  • Frequency Stability: +/- 2.5 ppm TCXO std. 32F to 122F (0C to +50C); Optional input for external 10 MHz standard reference
  • DDS Clock Frequency: 384 MHz
  • Emission Modes: A1A (CW), A3E (AM), J3E (LSB, USB), F3E (FM), F1B** (RTTY), F1D1 (PACKET), F2D1 (PACKET)
  • Frequency Steps: 1Hz minimum
  • Number of Memory Channels: Unlimited
  • Antenna Connectors: BNCx1, XVRx1, XVTRx1
  • Antenna Impedance: 50 Ohms, unbalanced; Rx Optimal
  • Maximum Interconnect Cable Length: Complies with USB 1.1 (not to exceed 5 meters)
  • CE Compliance Cable Requirements: 1 snap on ferrite bead on USB cable (supplied); Bead to be located adjacent to radio connection


  • Power Requirements: +13.8V DC nominal ±15% (Transmitter output specified at 13.8VDC)
  • Power Consumption: Rx 400mA (typ.); Tx (5W) 1.8A (max)


  • Height: 2.4" (6.1cm)
  • Width: 4.0" (10.2cm)
  • Depth: 7.0" (17.8cm)
  • Weight: Approximately 1.5 lbs (0.68kg)
  • Operating Temperature: 14 to 122 degrees F (-10 degrees Celsius to +50 degrees Celsius)

Specifications are subject to change without notice.
1Requires 3rd party software.

The following product datasheets are available for download.

FLEX-1500 Datasheet (786.9 KiB)

FLEX-1500 Block Diagram107.0 KiB1755
FLEX-1500 Datasheet786.9 KiB4674
FLEX-1500 European Union Declaration of Conformity37.9 KiB218
FLEX-1500 Owner's Manual3.0 MiB9306
FLEX-1500 Owner's Manual (German)5.0 MiB724
FLEX-1500 Owner's Manual (Russian)10.7 MiB347
FLEX-1500 Quick Start Guide1.0 MiB2987
FLEX-1500 Service Manual2.0 MiB3243

PowerSDR Keyboard Mapping File26.4 KiB1883
PowerSDR V2.7.2 Release Notes575.8 KiB4394
PowerSDR v2.7.2 Integrated Installer22.5 MiB41243

A comprehensive listing of files can be found on the Downloads page.

FLEX-1500 1-Year Limited Hardware Warranty

This Limited Hardware Warranty is effective as of the date of first purchase by the consumer. Original equipment hardware warranties and manufacturer support for FlexRadio Systems' products applies only to the original purchaser and are not transferable unless a Warranty Transfer agreement is purchased from FlexRadio Systems. Before sending in your product for service, it is recommended that you query the FlexRadio Community to make sure your issue is not easily resolved. If you still have an issue, submit a request for support via the FlexRadio HelpDesk. Once you are assigned a incident or ticket number, one of our Technical Support Engineers will determine if the issue your product is experiencing requires service or repair and will either issue you an RMA (Return Material Authorization) number for service in Austin, TX or refer you to another authorized Service Center. Any product returned for service that is out of warranty or has had its warranty voided is subject to a one (1) hour diagnostic bench charge. This charge will be applied to any work performed.

What is Covered:

During the first thirty (30) days after the date of shipment, FlexRadio Systems will fully repair or replace defective product at their discretion. For the remaining one (1) year after the date of shipment, FlexRadio Systems will replace defective parts free of charge (post-paid) for transceiver components only. Any replacement hardware parts will be warranted for the remainder of the original warranty period or ninety (90) calendar days from the date of installation or repair, whichever is longer. FlexRadio Systems will also correct any failure caused by defective parts and materials. You must send the unit at your expense to FlexRadio Systems. FlexRadio Systems will pay return shipping to the country of purchase.

What is Not Covered:

This Limited Hardware Warranty as it pertains to the transceiver or radio components does not cover repair or damage caused by (1) misuse, negligence or user modifications; (2) any performance malfunctions involving non-FlexRadio Systems accessory equipment; (3) connection to improper or unstable voltage supply; (4) improper execution of hardware calibration or test routines; (5) the incorrect installation of any and all cables connected to the radio by the user; (6) the use of third-party software applications or hardware that directly or indirectly controls radio functions and/or operating state by utilizing a communication or control protocol, such as, but not limited to CAT or I2C commands; or (7) random acts of nature such as flood, fire, water, weather related storm, lightning / electrostatic discharge damage.

Limitation of Incidental or Consequential Damages:

This Limited Hardware Warranty does not extend to non-FlexRadio Systems equipment or components used in conjunction with our products. Any such repair or replacement is the responsibility of the customer. FlexRadio Systems shall not be liable or responsible for reimbursement for any special, indirect, incidental or consequential damages, including but not limited to any loss of business or profits, loss of property, loss of revenue, loss of use, loss of data, inconvenience or cost of unauthorized service.

Purchase the FLEX-1500 Software Defined radio and accessories directly from our Online store or from one of our authorized FlexRadio Distributors for our EU customers.

Purchase a FLEX-1500 via the Online Store Today!

For more information contact FlexRadio Systems Amateur Sales.