Coldcard Q Preview#
The COLDCARD® Q is the higher-end COLDCARD you've always dreamed about. It has a full QWERTY keyboard, a larger LCD screen that's easy to read, a real QR scanner and much more! The Q uses exactly the same security model as the Mk4 COLDCARD, with dual multi-vendor secure elements.
Get ready to meet the next level of self-custody, cold-storage solution. Reserve Your COLDCARD Q Now!
Don't worry, we are going to keep making the Mk4 (and subsequent versions) and many other signing devices! We don't want to force anyone to waste sats on features they don't need, but the Q is for those who will immediately understand and value its convenience features.
Unique Q Highlights#
- QWERTY Keyboard: ideal for long BIP-39 passphrases.
- 320x240 pixel LCD screen, 3.2" diagonal size. Four times Mk4 size.
- Battery powered by 3x AAA cells (or USB). Airgapped and/or wireless!
- Dual MicroSD slots (push-pull type, not spring loaded).
- QR Code scanner done right™, with LED illumination and advanced scanning algorithms and serial interface.
- NFC communication, like Mk4
- Includes internal storage for spare MicroSD cards.
- USB data & NFC data can be irreversibly blocked, by cutting a PCB trace: it permanently disable USB data and/or NFC data.
Same as the Mk4#
- NFC-V compatible: tap to transmit all data types, including PSBTs, addresses, and XPUBs.
- Two Secure Elements for security:
- Many extensive duress PIN options (Trick PINs)
- Two Secure Elements from two manufacturers; minimizes unknown vulnerability risks.
- USB Virtual Disk Mode: emulates a 4MB disk when connected to macOS, Windows, iPhone, etc.
- USB-C connector
- Same fast processor and high memory capacity.
Mk4 vs. Q Fact Sheet#
A side-by-side comparison of some of the improvements you can look forward to:
|QWERTY Keyboard: 50 keys vs. 12||✅||❌|
|Larger LCD Screen||✅||❌|
|# of MicroSD Slots||2||1|
|Battery Powered (optional)||✅||❌|
|QR Scanner module||✅||❌|
|# of Secure Elements||2||2|
|CPU Speed||120 MHz||120 MHz|
|Memory, Flash, Setting Memory||same||same|
|Activity LEDs - USB, SD Card||✅||✅|
|Activity LED - NFC||✅||❌|
|USB Virtual Disk Mode||✅||✅|
|Bitcoin Transaction Size Limit||2 MB||2 MB|
|SD Card Storage (flush)||2||1|
|Minimalist packaging and cruft||✅||✅|
New Features for COLDCARD Q#
Maybe a Bitcoin signing device doesn't need a keyboard, but it sure makes BIP-39 passphrases easier to enter! Using a BIP-39 passphrase to add another layer between your seed words and actual wallet is a huge security improvement—and the Q makes it easy to use every day.
Dedicated keys for menu selection, NFC, QR and other features make the Q easier to operate as well. We've even included a flashlight button which triggers the very bright LED's on the QR scanner module.
Coldcard has always been air-gapped, but now the power wire can be removed too. The COLDPOWER is not longer needed, and you can keep the AAA batteries (3) in the Q when not in use: they will not drain. Uses the most common alkaline cells available anywhere in the world (feel free to use rechargeable AAA alternatives as well).
No proprietary lithium packs here with limited life expectancy. No batteries handy? Just use the USB as with the Mk4.
What's Bitcoin without QR codes? On the Q, you can scan in data using an specialized QR scanner module at the top of the unit. It connects to the Coldcard internally using a simple 2-wire serial port, so there is less danger of scanned data doing more than it seems. Your bitcoin deposit address or other data is decoded by this dedicated module that is very good at reading QR codes in every lighting condition, and also includes super bright LED to light-up your mountain-top cave! Think highly-optimized grocery store scanner, not cellphone camera struggling to read a QR.
Huge New Screen#
With more than nine times as many pixels as the Mk4, plus colour, we're making all the text larger and easier to read on the Q. The screen is the key ingredient that makes the Q cost a little more, but also work better and easier. The new screen makes QR codes easier to scan on cellphones and other devices.
Upgraded MicroSD Slots#
We're COLDCARD users too—and we love that you can store a card in the Coldcard—but the spring-loaded slot of the Mk4 can be an nuisance. The dual slots on the Q are push-pull and the card hangs out enough to make it very easy to grab... even if you have no fingernails left after the bear market.
Dual slots means you can keep unsigned and signed transactions on different cards. Copying files and keeping dual backups is easier now.
For card storage, there are two spots to hold your spare SD cards, behind the battery door (accessible without removing the batteries).
Same Powerful Mk4 Features#
All the features of the Mk4 work the same on the Q, except many are easier to access due to dedicated keys. For example, the dedicated "QR" key lets you view many values as a QR code ready to be imported into your phone. Same for the dedicated "NFC" key which triggers NFC export/import based on context.
All features, designs and specs are subject to change. Batteries not included.