We report on the properties of nanocrystalline Si:H solar cells. The solar cells were of the p+nn+ type, with the n+ layer deposited first on a stainless steel substrates. The solar cells were prepared under high hydrogen dilution conditions using either ECR plasma deposition, or VHF diode plasma deposition processes. The deposition pressures were kept low, 5 mTorr in the ECR reactor and 50 mTorr in the VHF reactor. All the solar cells reported showed a high Raman ratio of crystalline to amorphous peaks. Properties such as dark current, deep level defects and shallow doping densities, and hole diffusion lengths were measured in these cells. It was found that the base layer was always n type, but that its doping could be changed by adding ppm levels of B during growth. A sufficient B doping even type converted the base layer to p type. It was found that there was a good one-to-one correlation between the shallow doping and deep level defects, suggesting that the same element, probably oxygen, is responsible for generating both shallow dopants and deep levels. The diffusion length of holes was measured in these cells using quantum efficiency vs. voltage techniques, and it was found that the diffusion length data could be explained very well by invoking trap-controlled recombination statistics. The dark I(V) curves could be represented by a standard diode model for highly crystalline materials, but as the degree of crystallinity was reduced, the diode factor increased. Voltage could be improved by reducing the crystallinity of the layer, but doing so resulted in a decrease in quantum efficiency in the infrared regions of the solar spectrum.