RFD900, RFD900+ - New long range radio modem

Hi All,

I would like to introduce you to a new radio modem that we developed for very long range datalinks!


Some of the key features of the RFD900 are as follows:

  • Multi point and point to point link capability.
  • Long range >40km depending on antennas and GCS setup.
  • 2 x RP-SMA RF connectors, diversity switched.
  • 1 Watt (+30dBm) transmit power.
  • Transmit low pass filter.
  • > 20dB Low noise amplifier.
  • RX SAW filter.
  • Passive front end band pass filter.
  • Open source firmware / tools, field upgradeable, easy to configure.
  • Small (30 x 57 x 13 mm), light weight (14.5g).
  • Compatible with 3DR / Hope-RF radio modules.
  • License free use in Australia, Canada, USA, NZ.


These modems are designed to support long range applications, while being easy to use and affordable.  

These modems have been flying in various platforms and have demonstrated excellent performance in real applications. 

RFD900 modems are now available at: http://store.rfdesign.com.au

Support within APM planner and the radio configurator from Michael Oborne is already available.

It works seamlessly with APM planner, all radio Mavlink parameters are available.

Update, December 2014:  The RFD900+ with improved specifications is available now at:


Seppo Saario



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There is a really awesome highly directive yagi antenna for 900MHZ you can build at home with simple tools for about 5 bucks included in this group of antenna designs.  You can mark the elements and wood boom so you can take them in and out for travel:


Wow great info / links thanks! 

I just now bought a RDF900+. when I write the mission and then read the mission the last command vanishes from the mission planner. this does not happens when I use other modems. I would like to use a previous version of firmware. can someone pls suggest which previous version I can use for RDF900+.

That is the only modem we use. 900 MHz range as 433 is used, here, by many heavy machinery such as cranes forklifts etc..

The rfdesign one has never failed us. We do have now a number of them! It is really flexible and you can tune many parameters including launched power. Up to 1 watt output is really great. Their software is "tiptop"! 

We use the RFD900a on all our flying platforms. Worked a treat with APM but works equally well with Pixhawk.

The true diversity antennas let us place each one on different areas of our various platforms (Quad hex X8 planes).

In short try it you will love it..  Documentation is real good too. Highly recommended.

For those who have not seen it yet. jDrones RFD900 set is even better now.

No more FTDI cable, new RFD900Plus set have all interior re-make. Mini-USB connector on Ground modem and DF13 on Air modem. Set includes cables for both APM and Pixhawk autopilots.

Air modem have 2dbi monopole antennas and Ground modem 3dbi dipole that can be bent. For Air you can get 90 degree SMA connector to make antenna to point different direction.

Store link: jD-RFD900Plus set

Here is always so energic Trent's from MyGeekShow and his Episode 148, test and comparison for 3DR Telemetry vs. jD-RFD900 set:


Jani / jDrones

Hi Jani,

Are these new features oem, or are they jdrones modifications?


I wrote to jDrones and asked them if these are legal to use in Europe and got a positive reply. So I am also interested in the difference between these and the rfd900+ from rfdesign?


wow, i just installed mine RFD900 set on my 650 quad and these things are amazing...well over 2km with lot of tree obstructions on the way...am very pleased..

I have RFD900 both on the hexa and the ground control. TX power from the default setup is 20dbm. I have tried to change the tx power to 30 dbm with success but unfortunately it can't connect on mission planner if the tx power is 30 dbm.
I have tried to use 30 dbm only on the ground while the air unit 20dbm but still can't connect. It can only connect on mission planner if both has 20dbm tx power.
Is there anything that i missed?

you could try putting some Ferrite beads on the communication leads as close as possible to the ends.  It could be that RF that strong is coupling into the com lines and causing the problem.  If you can shield the boards it might also help if this is the cause of the problem.

Somehow i'm not really that will help, but will try that this weekend.
I have try to use 3 different computer and came out the same result.
I have 2 hexa and both of them bahave the same as well.

all sudden my RFD900 range has been drastrically reduced to a few hundred meters and I cant figure out why? I tried resetting all parameters to default, reflashing the firmware, checking all connection and no luck....what would be some reasons for this?

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