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Airbud-RTL Board

 

Introduction


 

Airbud-RTL is a custom designed radio card carrier board that can host up to x16 Realtek RTL8812AU based modules. What makes it unique is the ability to access all radios over a single USB 2.0 interface connection and eliminate all the cabling and physical arrangement, compared to just using commercial USB hub and a number of USB radio dongles.

Its design is created around readily available USB hub silicons and high quality RTL8812AU SMT modules. Why the choice of RTL8812AU modules? The answer is very simple – this chipset was thoroughly tested by Aircrack, Kali, Kismet and other communities and is a premium choice for thousands of testers and WiFi enthusiasts world-wide.

It features dual-band dual-chain 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac radio supported by Aircrack device driver developers. When you are at events such as DEFCON, chances are that you will see many people zooming around with Alpha Network Inc AWUS036AC dongles plugged to their laptops. There’s a very good reason for that – built with the same RTL8812AU chip, this dongle sports outstanding performance and is compatible with virtually any Open Source WiFi tool.

The high-quality 4-layer PCB construction features a purposely chosen Mini-ITX form factor that allows integrator(s) to directly mount the Airbud-RTL Radio Board to the top or the bottom of a legacy Mini-ITX motherboard. The DC-DC switching regulator on the board conveniently takes anything in the 7V - 18V range. Just attach the antennas, apply power, connect to your PC with your favorite Open Source tool and explore this WiFi playground around you!

Contact us for more information about Airbud-RTL including volume orders and custom build  options.

Where to Buy


Airbud-RTL Carrier Board Features



  • x8 or x16 RTL8812AU modules soldered on a board
  • x16 or x32 RP-SMA antenna connectors (or U.FL connectors on modules variant )
  • USB 2.0 host interface
  • x2 additional USB 2.0 interfaces on header (x8 model)
  • 7V - 18V DC
  • Mini-ITX form factor

Availability


Assembled and tested Airbud-RTL Carrier Boards are available for pre-orders HERE.

All our appliances and components are assembled and tested by local staff (Ottawa, Canada).

Contact us us for volume price and custom build options information.

Documentation & Support


Coming soon...

Airbud-RTL Carrier Board Story and Use Cases


What Makes Our Airbud-RTL Carrier Board Unique?

There are no other market offerings that will allow simultaneous access to x8 or x16 USB based radio components in such a compact and elegant design. Careful layout consideration and modules location allows for easy system integration and/or standalone use. 

Why Are We Doing This?

We are trying to develop the concept of large-scale WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac data monitoring based on readily available legacy radio components that are compatible with modern Open Source security and detection tools. Such an approach requires utilization of a large number of radios connected to a single compute platform.

While PCIe presents a solid opportunity to build a reliable and robust system, USB radio cards were not very stable until recently. Thanks to efforts from Kali Linux, Aircrack and Kismet development communities, certain USB chipset offerings became a really affordable and flexible choice for professionals and testers worldwide.

We initially prototyped this concept with off-the-shelf components such as USB hubs and Alpha radio dongles. After testing the whole setup at DEFCON 26 in Vegas, with 32 radios being capable of capturing gigabytes of data from thousands of devices nearby in a matter of minutes, we said to ourselves – “Yep, this is the way to go forward for inexpensive large-scale monitoring test”.

This is how the Airbud-RTL was born. As a result of our testing with different components, and upon reaching a solid connection with a modules vendor, we finalized the prototype architecture and design that would support the required number of radio modules (8 and 16) with the ability to create an extendable platform. It took us a long time and multiple design re-spins to figure out all the bugs and flaws, but we are finally ready for small production quantities!



Applications - What Are Airbud-RTL Use Cases?

  • Ideal platform to implement multi-radio USB based detection and monitoring systems
  • Any application that requires access to large number of USB radio resources
  • Evaluation and Research platform for Kali Linux, Aircrack, Kismet and others