Fast ADCs cut power for 12- and 14-bit data capture

September 25, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
A family of ADCs from Texas Instruments provides flexibility and scalability with 12- and 14-bit, 2- and 4-channel, and JESD204B and LVDS options; they are, TI asserts, the lowest-power 25- to 160-Msps analogue-to-digital converters available for industrial designs.

The ADC3k family includes 12- and 14-bit options in speed grades of up to 160 Msamples/sec with 2 or 4 channels and with LVDS or JESD204B interfaces. The devices support the industrial ambient temperature range of -40C to 85C for use in industrial applications, such as motor control, medical imaging, and portable test and measurement, as well as defence and communications applications, such as software defined radio and MIMO communications.

TI presents the devices as leading in power consumption and power-to-performance ratio: At the fastest sampling rate of 160 Msample/sec, the devices use only 200 mW/ch, 80 mW/ch less than similar devices, and provide a 30% better power-to-performance ratio. Power scales to 44 mW/ch at 25 Msample/sec. An extensive pin-compatible family scales to meet multi-platform system needs for various sampling rates and channel counts. These 4-channel, 160-MSPS devices are half the size of existing devices.

Simpler board routing comes with JESD204B variants that are compliant with subclass 0, 1, and 2 at up to 3.2 Gbps. They support one lane per ADC output up to 160 Msample/sec, and one lane per two ADCs for up to 80 Msample/sec. Optional dither and chopper functions can improve spurious free dynamic range (SFDR) and remove 1/f noise, which allows designers to optimise device performance to meet system needs.

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