What’s the first thing you think of when selecting electronic components? Chances are it’s the processor or something else central to the system. The timing component may be the last thing on your mind, even though the clock provides the heartbeat that all signals in the system depend on.
Selecting these essential timing components may appear to be a straightforward process, but one must consider a number of factors that affect system performance. So, what are the most important specifications and considerations? Here’s a short rundown of the top oscillator parameters and why they’re important. Of course, there are more details to consider, so we’ve created an in-depth glossary that covers a broader range of oscillator characteristics (Fig. 1).