Seems Like More Digital In That RF

Glancing at some web statistics the other day, there seems to be a preponderance of interest in the conversion of RF and microwave signals into digital signals by readers who were nominally working with high-frequency analog signals for a living. Of course, most communications systems these days use some form of digital modulation, such as QAM, to pack as much data as possible onto narrow communications channels. Bandwidth is limited, so we must use whatever tricks are available to squeeze information onto the few MHz we have.

In the past, it seemed like an RF engineer would hand off a receiver design once it got to the analog-to-digital converter (ADC), then let the digital experts take it from there. But with more "RF" companiesHittite Microwave, for instanceadding digital components like ADCs to their product lineups, the feeling is that more and more RF and microwave engineers are adapting to an increasingly digital world by learning to design more of the circuit board beyond the ADC, and the digital-to-analog converter (DAC) coming from the other (transmitter) direction. If this is the case, and Microwaves & RF can be of more service with more articles on ADCs, DACs, and even field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs), let us hear from you. Otherwise, we'll stick to the analog stuff we all know and love.

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