TI Precision Labs - ADCs

TI Precision Labs is the electronics industry’s most comprehensive online classroom for analog engineers. The on-demand courses and tutorials include introductory ideas about device architecture in addition to advanced, application-specific problem-solving, using both theory and practical knowledge. Use these hands-on courses to predict circuit performance and move seamlessly from abstract concepts to specific formulae in an easy-to-follow format. Industry experts present each topic in order to help reduce design time and move quickly from proof-of-concept to productization.

The ADC (analog-to-digital converter or A/D converter) curriculum is segmented into major topic learning categories, each of which contains short training videos, multiple choice quizzes, and short answer exercises.

For a list of additional training topics, see the TI Precision Labs - Overview page.

1. Introduction to Analog-to-Digital Converters (ADCs)

These videos describe the key specifications listed in an analog-to-digital converter data sheet.

# Title Duration
1.1 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: DC Specifications – Input Capacitance, Leakage Current, Input Impedance, Reference Voltage Range, INL, and DNL
This video highlights the key DC specifications of analog-to-digital converters (ADCs).
1.2 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: AC & DC Specifications – Offset Error, Gain Error, CMRR, PSRR, SNR, and THD
This video describes offset error, gain error, CMRR, PSRR, SNR, and THD.
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2. Analog-to-Digital Converter (ADC) Drive Topologies

These videos describe the different types front-end topologies that can be used to drive the input signal of an ADC.

# Title Duration
2.1 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: SAR ADC Input Types
This video highlights the different input types for ADCs.  
2.2 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Determining a SAR ADC’s Linear Range when using Operational Amplifiers
This video shows how to design the front-end op-amp drive circuit for linear operation.
2.3 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Hands-on Experiment – Crossover Distortion
This hands-on experiment shows how the front-end driver impacts SAR ADC performance.
2.4 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Determining a SAR ADC’s Linear Range when using Instrumentation Amplifiers
This video shows how to design a front-end instrumentation amplifier drive circuit for linear operation.
2.5 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Driving a SAR ADC with a Fully Differential Amplifier
This video explains how to design ADC drive circuits using fully differential amplifiers, or FDAs.  
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3. Error and Noise

These videos describe how to calculate error and noise of analog-to-digital converters (ADCs).

# Title Duration
3.1 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Statistics Behind Error Analysis
This video covers the statistical implication of the typical and maximum data sheet specification values.
3.2 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Understanding and Calibrating the Offset and Gain for ADC Systems
This video discusses how gain and offset errors can be calculated and eliminated through calibration.
3.3 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Using SPICE Monte Carlo Tool for Statistical Error Analysis
This video shows how the TINA-SPICE Monte Carlo analysis can be used for statistical error analysis.
3.4 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Calculating the Total Noise for ADC Systems
This video walks through how to predict the overall system noise for an ADC, amplifier, and reference.
3.5 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Hands-on Experiment – ADC Noise
This hands-on experiment shows how the front-end driver is impacted by resistor thermal noise.
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4. AC Specifications

These videos describe how to analyze analog-to-digital converter (ADC) performance specifications that are measured using ac input signals, such as SNR, THD, SINAD, and SFDR.

# Title Duration
4.1 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Introduction to Frequency Domain
This video introduces the concept of the frequency domain.
4.2 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Fast Fourier Transforms (FFTs) and Windowing
This video introduces the FFT as well as the concept of windowing to minimize error sources.
4.3 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Coherent Sampling and Filtering to Improve SNR and THD
This video introduces the concept of coherent sampling and filtering for accurate characterization.
4.4 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Aliasing and Anti-aliasing Filters
This video introduces the concept of frequency domain aliasing and why anti-aliasing filters are needed.
4.5 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Hands-on Experiment – Aliasing and Anti-Aliasing Filters
This hands-on experiment demonstrates aliasing and the effect of anti-aliasing filters.
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5. SAR ADC Input Driver Design

These videos describe how to design the input driver circuitry for a successive approximation register analog-to-digital converter (SAR ADC).

# Title Duration
5.1 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Introduction to SAR ADC Front-End Component Selection
This video describes how to select the best external components to achieve optimal ADC performance.
5.2 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Selecting and Verifying the Driver Amplifier
This video walks through the process of selecting the driver amplifier and verifying its SPICE model.
5.3 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Building the SAR ADC Model
This video walks through the process of creating a TINA Spice Model for a SAR ADC.
5.4 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Refine the Rfilt and Cfilt Values
This video walks through the process for optimizing the selection of the external R and C values.
5.5 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Final SAR ADC Drive Simulations
This video shows the simulation results using the external R and C components from the previous videos.
5.6 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Hands-on Experiment – Amplifier Settling and Charge Bucket Filter Design
This hands-on experiment shows how to simulate ADC settling time and then measure the impact different amplifiers and charge buckets have on THD and S...
5.7 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Math Behind the R-C Component Selection
This video walks through the mathematical algorithm used in the ADC SAR Drive Calculator.
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6. Driving the Reference Input on a SAR ADC

The goal of this section is to cover reference specifications, gain a deeper understanding of the SAR voltage reference behavior, and develop methods for driving the reference input that minimize error.

# Title Duration
6.1 TI Precision Labs - ADCs: Voltage Reference Overview
This section covers reference specifications, to gain a deeper understanding of how the voltage reference impacts the performance of the ADC system.
6.2 TI Precision Labs - ADCs: Overview of Reference Drive Topologies
This video introduces the reference buffer and other reference drive topologies, and how they impact ADC performance.
6.3 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: SAR Reference Input – The CDAC
The video provides insight into the origin of transient current pulses on the reference input of the SAR ADC.
6.4 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Understanding the SAR Reference Input Model
In this section we gain a basic understanding of a custom SAR ADC reference input SPICE model based on datasheet parameters.
6.5 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Developing the SAR Reference Input Model
This section shows how to configure all the different components in the model to verify the ADC reference input settling performance.
6.6 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Hands-on Experiment – Reference Drive
This hands-on experiment looks at the impact of reference bandwidth on ADC AC and DC performance.
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7. Low-power SAR ADC System Design

These videos describe how to design a low-power data acquisition system using a successive approximation register analog-to-digital converter (SAR ADC).

# Title Duration
7.1 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: SAR ADC Power Scaling
This video highlights the considerations for low-power system design.  
7.2 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: Hands-on Experiment – System Power Scaling
This hands-on experiment shows the impact that ADC sampling rate has on the system power consumption.
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8. Electrical Overstress on Data Converters

The goal of this series is to cover methods for protecting a system with an ADC with external components.  Furthermore, this series will look at understanding the impact that the protection components have on performance and minimizing this impact.
# Title Duration
8.1 EOS and ESD on ADC
This video starts with an introduction of electrical overstress, abbreviated EOS, and Electrostatic Discharge.
8.2 TI Precision Labs – ADCs: External EOS Protection Devices
This presentation covers a short review of external devices that can be used to protect data converters from electrical overstress.
8.3 TI Precision Labs – Import Diode's PSpice Model into TINA
In this presentation we will cover a method for importing a SPICE netlist into TINA.
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9. High-Speed Analog-to-Digital Converter (ADC) Fundamentals

These videos cover the fundamentals of high-speed data converters, including an overview of the architectures of both ADCs and digital-to-analog converters (DACs) and other details unique to high-speed devices.
# Title Duration
9.1 Understanding and Comparisons of High-Speed Analog-to-Digital (ADC) and Digital-to-Analog (DAC) Converter Architectures
Overview of high-speed data converter architectures: pipeline, interleaved, Successive Approximation Register (SAR), DAC current source and current si...
9.2 The Impact of Jitter on Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) for High-Speed Analog-to-Digital Converters (ADCs)
Considerations of Clock jitter, the impact on SNR, how to calculate it and minimize noise degradation for High-Speed Analog-to-Digital Converters.
9.3 Understanding Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) and Noise Spectral Density (NSD) in High Speed Data Converters
Concepts of Signal to Noise Ratio and Noise Spectral Density; an example on how NSD is used to estimate the DAC output as it pertains to noise floor.
9.4 Bandwidth vs. Frequency - Subsampling Concepts
Learn more about subsampling concepts pertaining to bandwidth vs. frequency, including: Nyquist frequency, aliasing, under-sampling, and input bandwid...
9.5 Sampling Rate vs Data Rate, Decimation (DDC) and Interpolation (DUC) Concepts in High Speed Data Converters
Explore the differences between sample rate and data rate and use decimation or interpolation to decrease or increase the data rate.
9.6 Frequency and Sample Rate Planning: Understanding Sampling, Nyquist zones, Harmonics and Spurious Performance in High-Speed ADCs
The concepts and benefits of frequency planning for high speed ADC systems are covered, including sampling rate vs. Nyquist, harmonics and spurs.
9.7 High Speed Data Converter Signal Processing: Real and Complex Modulation
This video covers phase and amplitude modulation, introduces the concepts of real and complex modulation and provides an example modulation use case.
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