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ADC and DAC Introduction

With the recent shift towards digital information processing, low power A/D conversion has evolved as a key requirement in many electronic systems.
Especially in portable applications, restrictions on the available power or energy tend to dictate a stringent upper bound for the maximum affordable energy per A/D conversion.

While feature size scaling has enabled the possibility of implementing extremely fast ADCs in standard CMOS technology , the resulting power dissipation at these technology limits is often prohibitively high. In modern applications, where the power budget is typically only a fraction of a Watt, power efficiency rather than technology speed upper bounds ADC throughput.

Over the past decade, tremendous progress has been made in reducing ADC power dissipation. Hence, one is tempted to ask: Are we approaching “fundamental” limits? How much more improvement can we hope for? These questions are difficult to answer with great precision, what is possible in today’s technology.

An ADC inputs an analog electrical signal such as voltage or current and outputs a binary number. In block diagram form, it can be represented as such:

ADC

A DAC, on the other hand, inputs a binary number and outputs an analog voltage or current signal. In block diagram form, it looks like this:

ADC

Together, they are often used in digital systems to provide complete interface with analog sensors and output devices for control systems such as those used in automotive engine controls:

ADC

It is much easier to convert a digital signal into an analog signal than it is to do the reverse. Therefore, we will begin with DAC circuitry and then move to ADC circuitry.

Basics of DAC and ADC more details

Books on A/D and D/A Converters and analog integrated circuit

CMOS Mixed Signal Circuit Design, R. Baker.
CMOS Circuit Design, Layout, and Simulation.
Continuous-Time Sigma Delta Modulation for A/D Conversion,
Oversampling A/D Converters
Continuous-Time Delta-Sigma Modulators
Design of Multi-bit Delta-Sigma A/D Converters,
Systematic Design for Optimization of Pipelined ADCs, Kluwer
CMOS Data Converters for Communications, Gustavsson, , Kluwer

Integrated Converters, Jespers, Oxford, with MATLAB toolbox.
Modular CMOS A/D Converters, Lin,
Top-Down Design of High-Performance Sigma-Delta Modulators, Medeiro, Kluwer
High-Speed A/D Converters, Moscovici, Kluwer
Delta-Sigma Data Converters, Norsworthy, Shrier, and Temes,
The Design of Low-Voltage Sigma-Delta Modulators by Rabii and
Wooley,
Principles of Data Conversion System Design by Behzad Razavi.
Data Converters for Wireless Standards, Shi, Kluwer
Integrated A/D and D/A Converters, Van de Plassche,
Circuit Techniques for A/D Converters, Waltari, Kluwer
Design of Analog-Digital VLSI Circuits, Prentice Hall,

Books on General Analog Design and Layout
Design Criteria for Low Distortion Op Amps, , Kluwer

Huijsing, Operational Amplifiers, Theory and Design, Kluwer
CMOS, BiCMOS, and Bipolar Operational Amplifiers, deLangen, Kluwer,
Eschauzier, Frequency Compensation of Operational Amplifiers, Kluwer
The Art of Analog Layout, by Alan Hastings.
CMOS Analog Circuit Design, Allen, Oxford,
Analog BiCMOS Design, Daly, CRCPress,
On-Chip ESD Protection for Integrated Circuits, Wang, Kluwer
Trade-offs in Analog Circuit Design,Toumazou et al,Kluwer.
Analog Circuit Design, Michelle Steyaert et al, Kluwer.
Analysis and Design of Analog Integrated Circuits, Gray & Meyer, Wiley
CMOS Mixed-Signal Circuit Design, Baker,
Basic ESD and I/O Design, Dabral, Wiley.
ESD in Silicon Integrated Circuits, Amerasekera, Wiley.