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Pots, pans, logs and linear digital pots create arbitrary voltage curves

Posted: 18 Mar 2009 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:potentiometer digital? voltage arbitrary? pots logs?

Logging, pots and pans are about as diverse as subjects get. Well, that is what most people might suspect because the common definition of logging is harvesting trees. Pots and pans are typically ignored as mundane. Nonetheless, an average cook needs great pots to help prevent overcooking and burning food. Engineers, however, have different ideas about logs and pots.

The most popular electronic potentiometers (pots) are linear. Due to their large sales volume, they tend to be among the less expensive pots. Nevertheless, other applications like audio require a logarithmic response to match the human ear's response.

Linear digital potentiometers can be used to make arbitrary voltage curves and waveforms. An alternative name for a digital pot is a "string" DAC. Logging pots is the art of making a linear pot produce a logarithmic response for applications such as audio.

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