Sep 20 – 24, 2021
In-Person & Virtual
US/Eastern timezone
In-Person Attendees Please See Updated COVID Information

Embedded Computer Solutions for SDRs running GNU Radio

Sep 22, 2021, 1:55 PM
Coliseum Ballroom (In-Person & Virtual)

Coliseum Ballroom

In-Person & Virtual

Talk SDR Hardware Main Track


Jeffrey Moore (


Most often we use laptops or desktop computer systems to interface to SDRs and run GNU Radio software. With few challenges these approaches work well until it is time to create a product with an embedded computer, embedded SDRs and of course GNU Radio. Creating an embedded computer / SDR system is a challenging project with engineering tradeoffs in many areas. It is important to design these embedded systems with these tradeoffs in mind from the outset. Otherwise, it will be very difficult to create a reliable system that performs well.

In an embedded system, these are often the most critical design criteria: x86/x64 vs ARM, Linux vs Windows, Intel vs AMD, CPU performance, Data latency to/from an SDR, Data storage, physical size, heat dissipation, battery life, EMI noise generated, EMI noise susceptibility, LNA strategy, PA strategy, grounding strategy, environmental susceptibility, overall reliability, field updates, crash recovery, certifications, product schedule, parts availability, Made in the USA, among others. We will discuss each of these in some detail, how they interact and counteract each other, and with strategies to overcome them. A couple of real- world examples will also be shown. These design challenges must be addressed from the beginning of a project and not simply solved at the tail end.

Very small, high performance embedded computer systems with SDRs and GNU Radio can be developed and manufactured. Exciting and highly reliable products can be created. Embedding small powerful computers, SDRs and GNU Radio in systems can enable many new possibilities for this technology. Let’s get off our big clumsy desktop & laptop systems and into the field.

Secondary Topic Internet of Things (IoT)

Primary authors

Jeffrey Moore ( Eric Marthinsen (Embedded Now, Inc.)

Presentation materials