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Last Revised: 2016-04-26 16:39:06.0

Software Defined Radio

2x2 MIMO RF transceivers with independently tunable options from 50 MHz to 6 GHz

Integrated support for your .m file scripts, C libraries, and VHDL IP

40 MHz, 120 MHz, or 160 MHz per channel real-time bandwidth featuring up to 80 dB
of dynamic range

High-speed, low-latency PCI Express x4 (~800 MB/s) connection to the host

Optimized RF performance with corrections for DC offset, I/Q imbalance, and

amplitude accuracy when using the LabVIEW Communications System Design Suite
and LabVIEW FPGA Module

Included software: NI-USRP driver and NI-RIO for the LabVIEW Communications
System Design Suite

Windows 8.1/7/XP support

Compatible with the LabVIEW Communications System Design Suite

Large reconfigurable DSP-oriented Xilinx Kintex-7 (410T) FPGA

Unified LabVIEW design flow for host and FPGA

The USRP RIO software defined radio (SDR) platform provides an integrated hardware and software solution for rapidly prototyping high-performance wireless communication
systems. Each USRP RIO device has two RF transceivers and a large Xilinx Kintex-7 (410T) FPGA in a half-1U rack-mountable form factor. The Kintex-7 FPGA is a
reconfigurable LabVIEW FPGA target that incorporates DSP48 coprocessing for high-rate, low-latency applications. With the flexible hardware architecture and the LabVIEW
unified design flow, researchers can prototype faster and significantly shorten time to results. Researchers around the world are using this design flow to prototype a wide range of
advanced research applications that include multiple input, multiple output (MIMO); synchronization of heterogeneous networks; LTE relaying; RF compressive sampling;
spectrum sensing; cognitive radio; beamforming; and direction finding.
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Comparison Tables


Real-Time Bandwidth

Integrated GPS Receiver

Frequency Accuracy


50 MHz to 2.2 GHz

40 MHz or 120 MHz per Channel

2.5 ppm


400 MHz to 4.4 GHz

40 MHz or 120 MHz per Channel

2.5 ppm


1.2 GHz to 6 GHz

40 MHz or 120 MHz per Channel

2.5 ppm


10 MHz to 6 GHz

160 MHz per Channel

2.5 ppm


50 MHz to 2.2 GHz

40 MHz or 120 MHz per Channel


25 ppb (unlocked)


400 MHz to 2.2 GHz

40 MHz or 120 MHz per Channel


25 ppb (unlocked)


1.2 GHz to 6 GHz

40 MHz or 120 MHz per Channel


25 ppb (unlocked)


10 MHz to 6 GHz

160 MHz per Channel


25 ppb (unlocked)
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Application and Technology

Massive MIMO

Waveform prototyping


5G PHY/MAC research

Cell networks/wireless/NFC

Dynamic spectrum access

RADAR (prototypes/detection)

Cognitive radio

Spectrum monitoring

Figure 1. USRP RIO Block Diagram

Unified Software Design Flow With the LabVIEW Communications System Design Suite
LabVIEW Communications offers two programming driver API approaches for the USRP RIO. The host API provides seamless continuity with USRP-292x and USRP-293x
devices using the NI-USRP driver for PC-based applications. The host API incorporates the common open, configure, read/write, close architecture used for host-based drivers
across the LabVIEW platform.
The USRP RIO Instrument Design Library (IDL) provides a seamless programming experience from the host all the way down to low-level FPGA processing for enhanced
performance and configurability to meet more demanding speed, latency, and throughput requirements. The included project templates serve as a starting point for implementing
algorithms on the FPGA. LabVIEW Communications also offers a variety of tools like multirate diagram and float to fixed conversion to accelerate the process of developing
algorithms for the FPGA.

Figure 2. LabVIEW-Based Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing Transmitter With .m File Script Integration
Integrating IP in LabVIEW
You can access a wide variety of IP for RF and wireless communications through the functions and reference designs for host and FPGA-based implementations.

LabVIEW-Based Graphical Programming

Integrated analysis functions for a variety of signal processing and communications techniquesfrom filters to fast Fourier transforms and channel modelscover a wide range of
applications that you can implement on the host, in real time, or on the FPGA.

Text Integration Nodes

LabVIEW Communications offers improved text-based support with text integration nodes. You can input your .m code and C code into the text integration node to quickly
prototype your existing algorithms on USRP hardware. Text nodes include features such as syntax highlighting, function completion, function documentation, and debugging. For
.m, it is also possible to create or import user-defined functions.

The IP Integration Node offers a way to add existing VHDL code to LabVIEW. This node also automatically creates a simulation model for the IP, so you can simulate the FPGA
diagram on the development computer. Once configured, you can use the IP Integration Node like any other LabVIEW node with inputs and outputs.

Xilinx CORE Generator IP


You can move Xilinx CORE Generator IP blocks directly from the LabVIEW FPGA palette to the block diagram. This streamlines integrating existing communications, math, and
even image or video processing IP using the same IP Integration Node introduced in the LabVIEW 2010 FPGA Module.

Complete SDR System Configurations

A typical USRP RIO SDR system includes the following:
A host computer that can be a desktop, laptop, or PXI Express controller
MXI-Express x4 interface card and a cable to connect to the USRP RIO device
LabVIEW Communications System Design Suite

Figure 3. USRP RIO System Components

USRP RIO System Components

Part #
Connectivity Kits

USRP-2940R, 50 MHz to 2.2 GHz Software Radio Kit, 40 MHz BW
USRP-2940R, 50 MHz to 2.2 GHz Software Radio Kit, 120 MHz BW
USRP-2942R, 400 MHz to 4.4 GHz Software Radio Kit, 40 MHz BW
USRP-2942R, 400 MHz to 4.4 GHz Software Radio Kit, 120 MHz BW
USRP-2943R, 1.2 GHz to 6 GHz Software Radio Kit, 40 MHz BW
USRP-2943R, 1.2 GHz to 6 GHz Software Radio Kit, 120 MHz BW
USRP-2944R, 10 MHz to 6 GHz Software Radio Kit, 160 MHz BW
USRP-2950R, 50 MHz to 2.2 GHz + GPS Clock Software Radio Kit, 40 MHz BW
USRP-2950R, 50 MHz to 2.2 GHz + GPS Clock Software Radio Kit, 120 MHz BW
USRP-2952R, 400 MHz to 4.4 GHz + GPS Clock Software Radio Kit, 40 MHz BW
USRP-2952R, 400 MHz to 4.4 GHz + GPS Clock Software Radio Kit, 120 MHz BW
USRP-2953R, 1.2 GHz to 6 GHz + GPS Software Radio Kit, 40 MHz BW
USRP-2953R, 1.2 GHz to 6 GHz + GPS Software Radio Kit, 120 MHz BW
USRP-2954R, 10 MHz to 6 GHz + GPS Software Radio Kit, 160 MHz BW
PCI ExpressDesktop Interface Kit for USRP RIO


PXI ExpressPXI Express Chassis Interface Kit for USRP RIO


ExpressCard SlotLaptop Interface Kit for USRP RIO


GPIO Connection Kit for USRP RIO

USRP RIO 1U Rack Mount (2 USRP RIO Devices)

NI SDR Prototyping Platforms

NI offers a range of SDR prototyping solutions from affordable to high performance. The following table provides key characteristics of each platform to help
you choose the best solution for your application.
Form Factor and Model











200 MHz to 4.4


PXI Option

Phase Aligned

100 or 200 MHz

PXI Express


Options From



40, 120, or 160


Cabled PCI

579x + NI FlexRIO


10 MHz to 6 GHz

Options From

1 Gb








20 MHz




20 MHz


50 MHz to 6 GHz



Options From
50 MHz to 6 GHz

1 Gb


This device is intended for use in an engineering teaching or research laboratory environment for communications system design. It is the responsibility of the operator to use this
device in a way that complies with all local laws and regulations. Users are responsible for operating the device only at frequencies and transmit powers they are authorized to
This device complies with FCC Part 15 Emissions; Class A.

Technical Support and 1-Year Extendable Warranty

Local Sales and Technical Support
NI staff members are available in offices worldwide to give you access to engineers in more than 40 countries. Additionally, NI delivers industry-leading technical support through
online knowledge bases, applications engineers, and access to 14,000 measurement and automation professionals within NI Developer Exchange forums. Find immediate
answers to your questions at
NI also offers service programs that provide automatic upgrades to your application development environment and higher levels of technical support. Visit

Repair and Extended Warranty

NI offers complete repair services for its products. Express repair and advance replacement services are also available. NI provides extended warranties to help you meet project
life-cycle requirements. Visit
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Support and Services

System Assurance Programs
NI system assurance programs are designed to make it even easier for you to own an NI system. These programs include configuration and deployment services for your NI PXI,
CompactRIO, or Compact FieldPoint system. The NI Basic System Assurance Program provides a simple integration test and ensures that your system is delivered completely
assembled in one box. When you configure your system with the NI Standard System Assurance Program, you can select from available NI system driver sets and application
development environments to create customized, reorderable software configurations. Your system arrives fully assembled and tested in one box with your software preinstalled.
When you order your system with the standard program, you also receive system-specific documentation including a bill of materials, an integration test report, a recommended
maintenance plan, and frequently asked question documents. Finally, the standard program reduces the total cost of owning an NI system by providing three years of warranty
coverage and calibration service. Use the online product advisors at to find a system assurance program to meet your needs.

NI measurement hardware is calibrated to ensure measurement accuracy and verify that the device meets its published specifications. To ensure the ongoing accuracy of your
measurement hardware, NI offers basic or detailed recalibration service that provides ongoing ISO 9001 audit compliance and confidence in your measurements. To learn more
about NI calibration services or to locate a qualified service center near you, contact your local sales office or visit

Technical Support
Get answers to your technical questions using the following National Instruments resources.
Support - Visit to access the NI KnowledgeBase, example programs, and tutorials or to contact our applications engineers who are located in NI sales
offices around the world and speak the local language.
Discussion Forums - Visit for a diverse set of discussion boards on topics you care about.
Online Community - Visit to find, contribute, or collaborate on customer-contributed technical content with users like you.

While you may never need your hardware repaired, NI understands that unexpected events may lead to necessary repairs. NI offers repair services performed by highly trained
technicians who quickly return your device with the guarantee that it will perform to factory specifications. For more information, visit

Training and Certifications

The NI training and certification program delivers the fastest, most certain route to increased proficiency and productivity using NI software and hardware. Training builds the skills
to more efficiently develop robust, maintainable applications, while certification validates your knowledge and ability.
Classroom training in cities worldwide - the most comprehensive hands-on training taught by engineers.
On-site training at your facility - an excellent option to train multiple employees at the same time.
Online instructor-led training - lower-cost, remote training if classroom or on-site courses are not possible.
Course kits - lowest-cost, self-paced training that you can use as reference guides.
Training memberships and training credits - to buy now and schedule training later.
Visit for more information.

Extended Warranty
NI offers options for extending the standard product warranty to meet the life-cycle requirements of your project. In addition, because NI understands that your requirements may
change, the extended warranty is flexible in length and easily renewed. For more information, visit


NI offers design-in consulting and product integration assistance if you need NI products for OEM applications. For information about special pricing and services for OEM
customers, visit

Our Professional Services Team is comprised of NI applications engineers, NI Consulting Services, and a worldwide National Instruments Alliance Partner program of more than
700 independent consultants and integrators. Services range from start-up assistance to turnkey system integration. Visit
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