RF Amplifiers ICs
RF amplifier ICs, or radio frequency amplifiers are a type of amplifier. Amplifiers are electronic devices which increase the power of a signal. RF amplifiers are devices that increase a low-power signal into a high-frequency signal in radio frequency communications. RF power amplifiers usually drive the transmitter antenna. They are integrated circuits which are used in electronic circuits, alongside other components.
RF amplifiers can tune into a desired range of input frequencies. They can also provide gain, buffering and drive for fragile signals. There are several different types of RF amplifiers characterised by their frequency range, supply current, supply voltage, gain and output power. The frequency range, also known as bandwidth, is given in MHz, and refers to the capacity of the communication channel. The wider the frequency range, the better the amplifier is for general purpose applications. Frequency range is different to the operating frequency, which is often given in GHz. Power gain, given in dB, is the ratio of the output power to the input power.
Amplifiers are categorised by their class. This gives an overview of the Amplifier characteristics and performance. They are classed using letter symbols, such as Class-A, Class-B, Class-C, Class-D or Class-AB.
RF amplifier components come in standard semiconductor packages. These package types include LFCSP, SOT-89 and MSOP.
Types of RF Amplifier IC
- RF amplifier power gain - if signal is too low to be useful elsewhere in the circuit, it can be increased by this amplifier. The amplifier boosts the signal level with minimum noise or distortion and can even be used with extremely low-level signals, such as those from an antenna.
- RF power amplifier - this type of electronic power amplifier converts a low-power radio-frequency signal into a higher power signal.
Where are they used?
RF amplifiers have a variety of wireless applications, including communications testing and medical diagnostics as well as voice and data communications. Other applications include 4G and 5G stations, wireless repeaters and radios.