Diono Radian 3QXT Plus Diono Radian 3QX
The various Diono Radian series of car seats have been around for many years now and they have always been some of the most popular premium convertible car seats amongst both parents and car seat safety technicians.
Although they are considered to be convertible car seats that are suitable for use from birth, they can also be used as harness-to-booster seats, and then finally as traditional high-backed booster seats. So, one of these seats could be the only seat that you need to buy in order to take your child all the way from birth to the time when they no longer need to use a child car seat at all.
The Diono Radian 3QXT Plus is the top-of-the-range model in their latest range of convertible car seats, while the 3QX is the entry-level model.
Many parents choose to buy an infant seat, and then a convertible seat, and then a booster seat. The Diono Radian 3QXT Plus and Radian 3QX seats can help you to avoid the cost of buying 3 separate seats without compromising on the safety of your child.
The Radian 3QXT Plus and Radian 3QX seats are very similar to each other, but there are a couple of differences between the seats for you to consider before deciding which one to buy for your child.
So, what are the similarities and differences between the Diono Radian 3QXT Plus and Diono Radian 3QX car seats?
Is the Radian 3QXT Plus version worth the extra money?
Here is my comparison review of the Diono Radian 3QXT Plus and Radian 3QX convertible car seats.
Radian 3QXT Plus vs Radian 3QX – The Similarities
1. Child Height & Weight Limits
The Diono Radian 3QXT Plus and Radian 3QX seats both have very generous child height and weight limits.
The overall weight limits for using both seats is between 4 and 120 pounds, but you need to be aware that each specific mode of use comes with different safe usage limits.
Those weight limits are:
- Rear-facing: 4 – 50 lbs
- Forwards-facing in harness: 22 to 65 lbs
- Forwards-facing using seatbelt: 40 to 120 lbs
The overall maximum height limit for both seats is 57 inches, but you should check the user manual for more specific height limit instructions in relation to each mode of use.
Also, don’t forget to keep your child in the rear-facing position for as long as they remain within the safe use height and weight limits. Just because they just about qualify to switch over to forwards-facing or use of the vehicle seatbelt, that does not mean it is best to do so straight away.
Rear-facing is generally safer than forwards-facing and using the 5-point harness is generally better than using the vehicle seatbelt, provided that the limits have not yet been exceeded.
2. Seat Width
One of the most distinctive features of the Diono Radian series of child car seats is that they measure just 17 inches across at their widest point. This makes them the narrowest convertible / booster seats on the US market and means that they are capable of fitting inside most standard sized family vehicles 3 in a row!
This is one of Diono’s main marketing boasts about the Radian car seats and it is well justified. The Diono Radian 3QXT Plus and 3QX seats both measure just 17 inches across.
So, if you have (or intend to have) a large family, the narrow width of these seats can make a massive difference and possibly help you to avoid the need to buy a larger vehicle with 3 rows of seating just so that you can fit all of the child seats inside.
3. Infant Head & Body Support Cushions
The Radian 3QXT Plus and the Radian 3QX both come with full head and body infant support cushions to help you to ensure a nice snug fit whilst your baby is very small. Unlike the previous R series of Diono Seats, the infant inserts are also made of memory foam for an even more comfortable fit.
If you keep reading this review, you will see that the infant support cushioning system on the Diono Radian 3QXT Plus is slightly different to that on the Radian 3QX.
4. Steel Frame and Aluminium Reinforced Sides
You can’t actually see this feature because it is hidden away inside the frame of the seat itself.
Not all child car seats come with a steel frame and metal reinforced sides and so this is a nice extra premium safety feature.
The steel frame brings added strength and stability to the seats in the event of a collision.
5. EPS Foam & Side Impact Protection
In addition to the metal sub-structure, both seats have the same energy-absorbing EPS foam and side impact protection features that exceed the relevant Federal safety standards.
The Diono Radian 3QXT Plus seat comes with extra side impact protection features that are explained below.
6. Headrest Adjustment
Both seats come with an adjustable headrest with 12 different positions to make it easier to achieve the best possible fit for your growing child.
This means that these seats come with 22% more headrest adjustment options than the older R Series range of seats.
The headrest adjustment mechanism is quick and simple to use and only requires one hand to operate it.
7. Other Shared Features
The Diono Radian 3QXT Plus and Radian 3QX seats also share the following features:
- SuperLATCH Installation
- Safe+ Newborn Baby Travel High Wedge
- NCAP crash tested
- Sits low on vehicle seat to make loading easier and improve safety performance
- Cup Holder
- Machine washable seat cover
- FAA approved for aircraft use
- Folds flat for easy carriage and storage
- 10 year product life
Radian 3QXT Plus vs Radian 3QX – The Differences
1. Side Impact Protection Layers
The first important difference between the Radian 3QXT Plus and Radian 3QX car seats is that the Diono Radian 3QXT Plus seat comes with more layers of side impact protection than the 3QX model.
The Radian 3QXT Plus seat comes with 8 layers as opposed to the Radian 3QX, which comes with 6 layers.
If you look carefully at the image of the Radian 3QXT Plus seat below, you ought to be able to see the extra Side Impact Management Pods on the outside of the seat itself.
In addition to the extra Side Impact Management Pods that come with the Radian 3QXT Plus model, it also benefits from an upgraded infant insert cushion. Again, if you look carefully at the images of these 2 seats and watch the comparison video review below, you will see that the infant insert cushion supplied with the 3QXT Plus seat has extra side impact protection built into it.
The slightly less expensive Diono Radian 3QXT seat also comes with these enhanced side impact protection features, but not the anti-rebound panel described below.
2. Anti-Rebound Bar / Panel
Unlike most of the older seats in the Diono R Series of seats, the 3QXT Plus and 3QX seats both come with anti-rebound features.
The anti-rebound features on each seat are very different though.
The Radian 3QX seat comes with a traditional looking anti-rebound bar. The anti-rebound bar is made of steel and is designed to increase stability of the seat in the event of a collision. The bar is said to reduce rebound rotation in certain crash situations by up to 50% over seats without an anti-rebound bar fitted.
The Radian 3QXT Plus seat comes with a 2-in-1 anti-rebound panel rather than just a standard anti-rebound bar. While your child is using the seat in the rear-facing mode, this anti-rebound panel works just like the regular anti-rebound bar that comes with the Radian 3QX and Radian 3QXT seats.
However, once your child outgrows the rear-facing mode, the anti-rebound panel on the Radian 3QXT Plus seat converts into a forwards-facing adjustable calf support for your growing child (see seat image above). This calf support is covered with a comfort liner to ease the transition to forwards-facing without your child having to deal with the potential discomfort of simply having their legs hanging unsupported over the edge of the seat.
CHECK OUT THE 3QXT Plus & 3QX COLOR OPTIONS HERE
Radian 3QXT Plus vs Radian 3QX – Video Reviews
So, here are some video reviews of the Diono Radian 3QXT Plus and 3QX car seats …
Radian 3QXT Plus vs Radian 3QX – My Verdict
Both of these seats are excellent options for any parent looking for a high-quality premium convertible car seat from a respected manufacturer.
They are the perfect choice for anyone looking to fit 3 car seats in a single row, since they are the slimmest convertible car seats or harness to booster car seats available.
The only real decision to make is whether or not you want to pay a little extra for the Radian 3QXT Plus in order to enjoy the benefits of its additional side impact protection features and the 2-in-1 anti-rebound panel.
Check Best Price of the Radian 3QXT Plus
Read User Reviews of the Radian 3QXT Plus
Check Best Price of the Radian 3QX
Read User Reviews of the Radian 3QX
Find Diono Radian Seats in Canada
Find the Latest Canadian Prices and User Reviews.
After purchasing any child car seat, you should always read the User Manual thoroughly before using it. It is also advisable to visit your local Fire Department or NHTSA Child Car Seat Inspection Centre to ensure that the seat is definitely suitable for your child’s specific requirements and that you have installed it correctly. These services are usually provided free of charge.
You can find your nearest NHTSA Centre here.
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