Review: Frsky R-XSR Receiver – The new “Best” mini quad RX?

by Oscar
Published: Last Updated on

The Frsky R-XSR receiver is the smallest RX that can do 16 channel SBUS and SmartPort telemetry. It’s the go-to option now and replaces the XSR or X4R-SB for Frsky TX users who own a Frsky transmitters such as the X9D and QX7.

You can purchase the Frsky R-XSR radio receiver from

Why you want to buy the R-XSR?

When you ask an experienced mini quad pilot using Frsky TX, “What’s the best Frsky receiver?” The answer is probably going to be “XSR” or “X4R-SB”. But the new R-XSR might be the new answer to that question.

Nowadays, the following features have become the standard for Frsky mini quad receivers:

  • SBUS
  • SmartPort telemetry
  • Diversity Antennas (full range)
  • Small and light weight

And the R-XSR ticks all the boxes yet it’s tiny compared to the XSR and X4R. It’s basically just the XSR but in a much smaller form factor.

It comes with IPEX antenna connectors so you if damage the antenna you can easily buy a new one and replace it.

Here is a comparison table between these RX’s.

Product Page R-XSR XSR X4R-SB XM+
Price (Oct 2017) $25 $17 $29 $13
Size (mm) 16 x 11 x 5.4 26 x 19.2 x 5 40 x 22.5 x 6 21.5 x 12 x 3.5
Weight 1.5g 3.8g 5.8g 1.6g
Voltage 4V-10V 4V-10V 4V-10V 3.7V-10V
Current [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] [email protected]
SBUS ? Yes Yes Yes Yes
S.Port ? Yes Yes Yes No

It might even replace tiny receivers like the XM+ RX which were only released earlier this year.

Check out this post to find out aobut other Frsky RX for mini quads.

New Feature – Receiver Redundancy

When I read through the manual of the R-XSR RX, I found it has a new and interesting feature called “Receiver Redundancy”. If you look at the pin-out of the R-XSR, you might realize there are the SBUS_IN and SBUS_OUT ports.

What it does, is allowing you to connect a separate SBUS receiver to the “SBUS_IN” of the R-XSR. When the R-XSR fails and loses signal, the other receiver will try to take over.

But not both receivers are connected to the same Taranis internal TX module, you will also need a separate TX module such as the XJT module plugged in to the TX module bay on the back of your Taranis.

So there would be two separate connections. You can even use a separate Taranis TX rather than an XJT module if you want.

For example you could use the XM+ and connect it up to your R-XSR like this:

In my opinion this is quite a cool idea that could save your quad from hardware failure and bad signals, but I don’t see it being used by ordinary pilots and racers due to the complexity of the setup and the cost for additional equipment.

Why you might not want to buy the R-XSR, yet?

However, the new R-XSR is not perfect and you might not want it get it, just yet.

As we speak, LUA script is still not compatible yet (which allows you to change PID, rates, VTX settings etc from your Taranis). As far as we know this should be fixed soon with a firmware update. Update (Oct 9th, 2017): Frsky has just fixed the issue with LUA script, make sure you update your R-XSR with this latest firmware. Here is the instruction how to flash Frsky receiver firmware.

The second issue is finding the uninverted Smart Port signal. It is possible to get the uninverted S.Port signal on the board just like other receivers as shown in this tutorial, but the pin is so tiny it’s quite challenging to solder on.

Finally, the antennas are not optimal. I wish they just follow the XSR and solder the antennas directly to the receiver rather than using those fragile iPEX connectors which are only designed for a few mating cycles.

And just like the XSR, the R-XSR is using “1/5 wavelength” antennas, which means the antenna elements shorter than the original X4R-SB of 1/4 wavelength antennas. Many people including have reported range issues and complained about it to Frsky. We’ve been told the reason behind this design is to reduce the chance of a prop strike, which doesn’t make much sense to be honest. However if you are having range issue, you can simply strip the antenna shielding to extend the antenna element and experiment until you find your desirable length.

If none of these issues bother you, then you should definitely get it while they are still in stock. But because of the release of the new RX, the old XSR prices have dropped considerably to only about $17.


Update (Oct 2017)

Frsky finally listened and might release a version of the R-XSR RX in the near future that has a separate, uninverted SmartPort output. This is great news for those who are running an F4 board that doesn’t have an inverted UART for S.Port signal. We don’t know when this will be available yet.

Update (13 Oct 2017)

Frsky has just released a new revision of the R-XSR, that has added the “uninverted SBUS” and “uninverted Smart Port” solder pads. As far as I know, they won’t release a version with just the uninverted signals, so this is it. But still it’s much easier to solder to.

Here is an image provided by Frsky – the “B” pad is uninverted SBUS, “P” pad is uninverted Smart Port.

Antenna Replacement

The R-XSR uses smaller IPEX connector for the antennas than the original X4R-SB receiver, they are called “IPEX 4th Generation”. Be careful when shopping around for antenna replacement.

I found this on Amazon (US), only $12 for 20!

For international buyers, this is the only source I can find so far:

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Geordie Schellhorn 28th March 2020 - 3:58 am

What are the other pads for on this receiver?
I’ve noticed there is a V and a G pad.
Wouldn’t be able to get Voltage tele by any chance?

Ruben van Eupen 16th June 2019 - 2:14 pm

This has been my experience with the r-xsr rx, did some modest testing, got 350 meters at most. Never again. Info about the testing:

CRONZ 10th November 2018 - 1:30 am

This receiver has been a nightmare. My friend and I have been having a weird issue with this Rx. You power on quad and look through goggles, perfect video. You turn on Transmitter then video feed goes crazy.

My friend has a completely different setup as me except we have the up to date/flashed RXSR and are having the same issue. He wired up an XM+ and problem went away. What gives?

Gary 1st August 2018 - 6:28 am

HI Oscar, Do you know if R-XSR receiver has RSSI pad?Could you please confirm it?Thanks

fernando 9th July 2018 - 7:29 am

hi oscar. i have proble with this and jumper t8sg. i put in “frsky” and “frskyX” with 8 channel bur dont bind. what happen? maybe power? thanks

Adriano Pangelinan 16th January 2018 - 7:53 pm

Oscar with all the new OSD functions in BF, is there any need to have smartport telepathy? I’m considering the XM+ because I currently think RSSI is all I need since I have an excellent F4 FC and I’ll rely on BF OSD for PIDs, telemetry etc. My perspective is someone who has only used the Turnigy Evolution but recently decided to get the FRSKY QX7 (for better range and more options), so I don’t understand all the features I haven’t used yet. :)

Oscar 29th January 2018 - 11:56 am

For me there are 2 reasons why use Telemetry
– OSD is useful, but it relies on video, telemetry is independent of video signal
– You can change PID/Rate/BF settings using LUA script and SmartPort

Shaun 9th March 2018 - 9:51 pm

– Telemetry works better for flying line of sight as you don’t have the video feed in that situation

Frank S McNew 16th January 2018 - 4:41 pm

How can I find the date of the article I am reading?
I must be blind but if you would tell me where to look it would help me to know how recent the information is?
Thank you,

Oscar 16th January 2018 - 5:34 pm

just below “related posts” and above the comments. For update and changes I keep a log of history at the end of the post too :)

level RC 27th November 2017 - 8:54 pm

Hi Oscar! Rssi solder pad? Thanks

Oscar 28th November 2017 - 2:37 pm

no need to use a hardware connection, just send RSSI via one of the spare SBus channels:

Raul Moreno 11th December 2017 - 3:59 pm

works too in btf osd?

Oscar 12th December 2017 - 2:09 pm


SadLeprechaun 7th February 2018 - 4:07 pm

Yes but what if you have no Taranis? I use a XJT module with a TBS Tango radio. I want to get this but no RSSI pad, I am uncertain how it would work. I use SBus and BF 3.2.4

Erik 15th November 2017 - 10:04 am

I got serious video-noise issues with this receiver. When I turn the radio off, it disapairs…
What is this?

Sander 12th November 2017 - 7:12 pm

I have problems with my r-xsr frsky receiver range, I’ve already downloaded the latest software but nothing helps. I can go about 200 meters far and then I have no more reach. what can I do? I can use the antenna of an x4r sbus receiver instead of the original r-xsr antenna

Oscar 18th November 2017 - 7:24 pm

It could be an issue with the antenna, as pointed out in the review.
Strip the shielding back and let the exposed part be 31mm and see if you get any improvement.

Billy 21st November 2017 - 12:05 am

Isn’t the R-XSR suppose to be “full range” (>1.5Km)? Sander’s 200m is 7.5X less than that…

Oscar 28th November 2017 - 1:57 pm

it is full range, i have been flying up to 800m without any problem (I haven’t tried flying further yet, my park is not big enough :) )

Jeffry 10th February 2018 - 6:21 pm

i feel like the range shorter than XM+… what if i turn off the telemetry?

Oscar 12th February 2018 - 2:13 pm

I doubt that will improve range.
In theory the XM+ should have similar range to the R-XSR. Make sure your antennas are placed 90degree apart and not blocked by the frame.

Kevin 11th May 2018 - 11:47 am

I can confirm that this is a problem with two copters i own that both use the R-XSR constant tripping the RSSI alarms. Thus far I have swapped out the antennas for new with no noticeable improvement. However previously the XM+ had a significantly longer range and rarely tripped the RSSI alarm.

VT 12th November 2017 - 1:52 pm

Hi Oscar, was appreciate if you can give answer as is this R-XSR receiver was able to power direct from fully charged 2s lipo(8.4Volt) ?

Oscar 12th November 2017 - 4:41 pm

It’s rated for 10V so that should be fine.

VT 14th November 2017 - 12:51 am

thanks alot, going to put this receiver into mcro 2s built and direct power it from main 2s lipo.

Rookie 2nd November 2017 - 5:43 pm

new batch useless for me, because i cant solder anything to those “uninverted pads”. no idea whats up there, but no solder sticks on that tiny pad (and no, i am not a soldering beginner).

Oscar 6th November 2017 - 6:30 pm

there could be a thin layer of coating, you can scrap it off gently with a cutting knife. and please use flux to help solder sticking to the pad.

Kev8 2nd October 2018 - 12:53 am

well obviously you are a beginner, there is no issue soldering to these little pads. Use your brain just alittle people make sure there is no coating on it which there is then hit it with a small tap of flux and touch it for I dont know what 1 millionth of a second and its soldered. I mean come on guys what are all these questions beginner people asking these or what. Like can you power with 2s lipo 8.4v I dont know what do you think it rated for 4-10v I mean you tell me what does that mean to you dude to the guy asking the question. That would be a yes RIGHTTTTTTTTTTTT well then yes. I mean hell can I power this using 5v can I power using 10v hey OSCAR can I mount this in a drone. IDK hey oscar I cant solder, hey oscar why did you make this product hey oscar its your fault hey oscar I think this other product is better hey oscar did you know telementrty works better for LOS no no im sure you didnt know that did you, I mean I guess that guy totally did not get what you meant, when he said that, as in yes you have video data in the OSD but its video, Use sport telm is great back up and good way to double check if your OSD is correct because its different systems. I mean whats up with these people in the comment section man. I can see you biting your tounge on these answeres and questions, where your just like really. keep up the good work there oscar now why did you make this receiver again or atleast thats what some of thesepeopel act like.

Snarl 2nd October 2018 - 4:36 pm

Enter the angry drunk troll who writes like a 3rd grader.
I guess Kevin was Never a Beginner. He must’ve been born with All the Knowledge of the Universe baked into that angry pea brain of his
I wish I was Kevin, then I would know EVERYTHING!!!!!! Except I wouldn’t be able to write very well

Jonathan Dahood 21st October 2017 - 1:54 pm

I have the r-xsr , and almost chopped a antenna last night.
So what antenna should I buy? Im looking on alofthobbies , and don’t see ones this size.
Thank you!

Oscar 24th October 2017 - 2:38 pm

search for “IPEX connector antenna for Frsky”.
They actually use the same antenna as the XM and XM+, so it should be pretty easy to find.

Mark8 19th October 2017 - 5:08 pm

Just recived a R-XSR v2.3.1
0Ohm betwen the Pad of the inverter who you can find on the web and the P pad.
Orderd on Bangood

Bernd 12th October 2017 - 4:20 am

Found a uninverted telemetry mod for the old R-XSR versions

Macflyer9 11th October 2017 - 11:30 pm

Oscar, thanks for the update on the R-XSR. Can you post up a picture of the R XSR with the applicable item circled for soldering? I picked up several R XSR’s and suspect it will be a while before FrSky will release the un-inverted one. Cheers, and thank you.

Oscar 19th October 2017 - 3:19 pm

I bought the R-XSR two weeks ago and they turned out to be the latest batch with uninverted pads on them. So yours might be the latest ones too.

Justin Mitchell 25th October 2017 - 8:00 pm

Oscar, where’d you pick them up? I’m going to order one, and want to make sure I get the latest batch..

Oscar 30th October 2017 - 5:33 pm

got mine from Banggood and they were new batches