High-Quality Amplifier PCBs with Competitive Pricing
What is An Amplifier PCB?
The amplifier is a device that can enlarge the voltage or power of the input signal. It consists of an electronic tube or transistor, a Power transformer, and other electrical components. It is usually used in various devices like communication, broadcasting, radar, television, automatic control, etc. It’s a very common piece of equipment.
As a device can increase signal amplitude and power, it is also a very important part of signal processing in automation technology tools. The amplifier has an amplification function, it realized the amplification function by controlling the energy with the input signal, and the amplification power dissipation is supplied by the energy. For the linear amplifier, the output is the recurrence and enhancement of the input signal. For the nonlinear amplifier, the output and input signal will form a certain functional relationship.
The physical quantity of signal processing of an amplifier can be divided into a lot of types, such as a mechanical amplifier, electro-mechanical amplifier, electronic amplifier, hydraulic amplifier, pneumatic amplifier, etc. In those amplifiers, the electronic amplifier is used most extensively. With the popularization of Jet technology, the applications of hydraulic or pneumatic amplifiers are also increasing.
Electronic amplifier also can divided into vacuum tube amplifier, The electronic amplifier also can be divided into vacuum tube amplifiers, transistor amplifiers, solid-state amplifiers, and magnetic amplifiers. Among them, transistor amplifiers are the most widely used. In the automatic instrument, transistor amplifiers usually use in electric voltage increasing and electric current increasing of the signal, the main forms will be Single ended amplification and push-pull amplification. In addition, transistor amplifiers are also used for impedance matching, quarantine, current-voltage switch ( for example Charge Amplifier ), and use Amplifier to realize the certain functional relationship between output and input ( Like Operational amplifier ).
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High-Frequency Power Amplifier PCB Design Principle
Instrument Amplifier PCB Design
Instrument amplifiers (or INAS for short) are mainly used in products that require amplification of differential voltages. For example, it is needed when we measure the voltage of a parallel resistor. It is even more necessary when high-side current sensing applications are involved. Those experienced in the instrument amplifier PCB design will quickly learn that the picture below shows the schematic of a typical single-supply, high-voltage side current-sensing circuit. This simple picture contains many important points.
Let’s take a look at picture 1. Although the layout of the schematic in Figure 1 seems simple, we should not take it lightly when designing. As the saying goes, you can never be too careful. Only by taking the design seriously can we reduce the errors of the PCB layout.
Picture 2 shows a PCB layout with three issues that often occur when INA layouts are reviewed.
Lies in accurately measuring the differential voltage across resistor Rshunt. Having unbalanced line traces at the input can lead to errors in the INA’s work of amplifying the differential voltage. There is no doubt that the input lines of the INA need to be balanced as well as the shorter the input lines the better.
Is closely related to the gain-setting resistor Rgain of the INA. If the alignment from the pins of U1 to the pads of Rgain is not longer than necessary, additional resistors and capacitors can be avoided. Additional resistors and capacitors can cause a series of problems. Therefore, the line connecting to the gain setting resistor should be as short as possible.
Is the improper placement of the pin buffer circuit. The reference pin buffer circuit should not be positioned too far from the reference pin. Otherwise, the resistance connected to the reference pin will increase, and there is also the risk of noise and other signals coupling to the leads. Therefore, the closer the reference pin buffer circuit is to the reference pin of the INA, the better.
After avoiding making the above 3 mistakes, the layout will be The above picture is an example of a good design. The design in the figure takes into account the shortest possible lead from the gain setting resistor to the INA pin and the arrangement of the reference buffer circuit as close to the reference pin as possible.
Taking into consideration the following guidelines will make your design for the INA of the PCB more effective and efficient.
1, Maintain a full balance of all traces at the input.
2, Reduce the length of the traces, at the same time, the resistance of the gain-setting pin to the lowest.
3, Put the position of the benchmark buffer circuit close to the reference pin of INA
4, Put the decoupling capacitor near the power supply pin as far as you can.
5, Pour into at least one solid ground plane.
6, Do not discard a good layout to label the components with screen marks.
Guidelines for Operational Amplifier PCB Layout
The key to the successful circuit design of an Operational amplifier will be a high-level PCB layout. It is very important, especially for high-speed circuit design. So you will need a very good schematic diagram as the base of the good layout. In this condition, cooperating closely between the circuit design engineer and layout design engineer will be very important. In addition, the position of components and trace is our priority. To achieve this, will need to consider a lot of problems, like bypass power, reducing parasitic effects, adopting grounding plane, Operational amplifier package effect, and the methods of layout and shield, etc. The details as below:
Amplifier PCB is Closely Related to 5G PCB
Since 2019, 5G preliminary commercial, the upstream raw materials of core material products such as high-frequency copper board are similar to the traditional CCL, after downstream PCB manufacturers produce high-frequency PCB that applicable to high-frequency environment, then applied to the equipment components like antenna base station module, power Amplifier Modules, etc. and finally widely used in the field of high-frequency communication such as communication base station ( antenna, power amplifier, low noise amplifier, wave filter, etc. ), Automotive auxiliary system, space technology, Satellite communication, Satellite TV, Military radar, etc.
Main Types of High-Frequency High-Speed Material:
Material Selection for 5G Power Amplifier PCB
Rogers’ High-Frequency Material for Amplifier PCB
It is the base of PTFE printed circuit material in the ceramic filling, and the types are including material RO3003, material RO3006, material RO3010, and material RO3035 High-frequency laminate.
It is the PTFE print circuit material base in Ceramic filling, designed for high dielectric constant and microwave radio frequency circuit boards, types are RT6006 ( material dielectric constant is: 6.15 ), RT6010 ( material dielectric constant is: 10.2 ).
Based on conforming materials of Ceramic, hydrocarbon, and thermosetting polymer, types are material TMM3, material TMM4, material TMM6, material TMM10, material TMM10i, material TMM13i, etc.
Hydrocarbon resin plus Ceramic filler laminate and Prepreg (PP) can provide industry-leading high-frequency performance and low circuit processing cost, it is a material that can compatible with FR-4 processing technology ( including the multilayer PCB structure) and does not need to special hole pretreatment process similar to sodium etching.
RO4000 material has the characteristic that microwave RF circuit, matching network, and specific impedance transmission line design needed. RO4000 series material provides a 2.55 – 6.15 Dielectric constant and Low z-axis thermal expansion coefficient, possesses better heat treatment capacity than traditional PTFE material, can be compatible with lead-free solder process, also have the version that fit the UL 94 V-0 fire rating. So RO4000 series products are the ideal choice for an application like REID, LNB, etc.
Types are: RO4003C, RO4350B, RO4360G2, RO4500, RO4700, RO4835, RO4450F (PP).
RO4450F (PP) is the high-frequency Prepreg base on RO4000 series laminate material, can laminate with RO4003C, and RO4350B for multilayers, also can compatible with most standard FR4 producing processes. RO4459F Prepreg can be compatible lead-free solder process, also have can reach the UL 94 V-0 fire rating.
In the sample production of PCB, Rogers materials are Special circuit board materials, have a certain technical threshold, the operation difficulty is big, and the price is very high. So the small factory focusing on samples PCB manufacturing may not have skilled workers to produce Rogers PCB, and the big factory may think the quality is too less. But in Viasion, we are willing to accept small orders since we focus on small to medium volume PCB manufacturing.
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Frequently Asked Questions
As mentioned before, an amplifier PCB is the printed circuit board used in amplifiers.
The main objective of an amplifier PCB is to realize the function of increasing the amplitude and power of the signal.
The amplifier converts a low-level, high-source impedance signal to a high-level, low-source impedance signal for input to the converter.
Amplifier PCBs have not been classified into different types yet. But different kinds of material and different layers of PCBs are used.
The applications of amplifier PCB include communication, broadcasting, radar, television, automatic control, etc.
Magnification, input resistance, and output resistance should be considered before making a choice. All kinds of components are used in amplifier PCBs, such as:
- Crystal transistors
- Electron tube
- Power transformer
- IC chips
- Passive components such as capacitors, resistors, etc.
The stability of an amplifier PCB refers to the stability of the circuits.
When laying out the amplifier PCB, you need to ensure that the following principles are followed.
Ensure that all circuits on the input side are fully balanced.
Reduce the length of the circuit and minimize the capacitance on the gain-setting pins.
Arrange the reference buffer circuit as close as possible to the INA reference pins.
Arrange the decoupling capacitors as close to the power supply pins as possible.
Overlay at least one solid grounding layer.
Do not sacrifice a good layout to use silkscreen for the components.
Increase a weak electrical signal to a sufficient amplitude through a circuit
Reduce wiring and assembly errors, increasing automation and production labor rates
High-frequency materials produced by Rogers are best for amplifier PCBs.
To improve the performance of the amplifier PCB, we should keep the following points in mind.
In the amplifier circuit, the feedback loop should not include any circuit that affects the phase of the signal.
The routing of the amplifier PCB should be as short as possible, while digital signals, crystal oscillators, and other sources of interference should be avoided as much as possible.
An amplifier PCB can be single-sided, double-sided, or multi-layer.
Unlike simple PCBs, amplifier PCBs amplify the input weak signals (referred to as signals, meaning changing voltages, currents, etc.) to the desired amplitude value and with the same variation pattern as the original input signal, i.e., they are amplified without distortion.
Stray capacitance or parasitic capacitance generally occurs between parallel conductive strips on a printed circuit board or between conductive strips or conductive planes on opposite sides of a printed circuit board.
Whenever two or more elements or materials near each other are at different potentials, stray capacitance will exist between them.
The presence and effect of stray capacitance, at very high frequencies, are often overlooked in circuit design, so in the manufacture and installation of the system circuit board, serious performance problems will occur. For example, noise becomes larger, frequency response is reduced, or even the system becomes unstable.
The heat sink serves to create a larger surface area on the heat-generating device, thus transferring heat more efficiently and distributing it to the surrounding environment.
The process of fabricating an amplifier PCB is the process of materializing the amplifier PCB diagram designed from the circuit schematic. It includes the whole process from PCB fabrication and assembly.
The heat dissipation of PCBs is related to the selection of the substrates and components as well as the component layout. The layout plays an important role in PCB heat dissipation and is the key link to the design of PCB heat dissipation. When making a layout, engineers need to consider the following aspects.
(1) The components with high heating and large radiation are centrally designed and installed on another PCB board, to carry out separate centralized ventilation and cooling to avoid mutual interference with the motherboard.
(2) Make the path of the heat transfer path as short as possible.
(3) Make the cross-section of the heat transfer as large as possible.
(4) The layout of components should take into account the influence on the thermal radiation of surrounding parts. Heat-sensitive parts and components (including semiconductor devices) should be kept away from heat sources or isolated.
(5) Components with large heat or current should not be placed at the corners and edges of the PCB. The heat sink should be installed as far as possible and kept away from other devices, and the heat dissipation channel should be unobstructed.
Open and Short Circuit Testing
There are lots of information about PCB manufacturers online. It’s convenient to browse the official websites of these manufacturers and get quotes from them. Then you can choose the most suitable one and place your order for an amplifier PCB. As an experienced PCB manufacturer, Viason is looking forward to serving you. Here is our official website: https://www.viasion.com/. You are welcome to get a quote for amplifier PCBs.
The following factors should be considered before choosing the right amplifier PCB for your project.
5. Digital Gain
6. Input and output impedance matching
7. Over voltage protection, over current protection, overheat protection, short circuit protection
(1) Install the amplifier PCB on the rack first, and let the circuit board be in place and smooth. Plug in the lead plugs and small organs.
(2) Evenly tighten the fixed screws, that is, do not install a screw to tighten one, but first install the screws, and then evenly tighten diagonally. If the board surface is not smooth and the screw holes of the board are not in place, do not forcibly tighten the screws.
After the production of the amplifier PCB is completed, the manufacturer will test the product and give you feedback on the operation of the amplifier PCB to you.