An RF amplifier can be a useful tool when it comes to transmitting clear signals between an antenna and a receiver. The RF amplifier will help to enhance the quality of the signal moving through it, but this improvement can only be achieved if you invest in the right RF amplifier for your unique needs.
Two of the most important factors you must consider when purchasing an RF amplifier are signal modulation and peak power levels. Modulation will tell you which type of amplifier is best suited to meet your needs, while peak power can help you ensure that your RF amplifier is strong enough to accommodate your signal.
The wrong amplifier can create serious problems that might compromise the quality and consistency of your signal transmissions over time.
1. Amplifier Damage
Pairing the wrong RF amplifier with your transmission system could cause irreparable damage to the amplifier itself. All amplifiers are designed to run at a specified safe power output level. When the power output level of your amplifier is lower than the peak power of your signal, damage can occur.
The excess power that the amplifier cannot translate into an output waveform has the potential to appear on the transistors of the amplifier as heat. Exposure to excess heat on a regular basis can cause the transistors to fail, leaving you without a functional amplifier.
It's important that you take the time to calculate your peak power needs so that you can invest in an RF amplifier with plenty of headroom. This will ensure that your amplifier isn't damaged by an excessive workload.
2. Compromised Signals
The primary purpose of an amplifier is to enhance the quality of the signals being distributed through the amplifier. When you invest in the wrong amplifier for your transmission system, your signal can actually become compromised as a result of the amplifier's power inefficiencies.
The peaks in your signal cannot be reproduced by an amplifier with a power output rating that is lower than the peak power itself. You will lose a lot of information at the peak power level, which may require that you adjust your input levels to reduce power output.
If you want to be able to transmit a clear and complete signal at peak power, you need to ensure that your RF amplifier is capable of handling the designated amount of power. Otherwise, you will experience compromised signals that can lessen the quality of your transmission system over time.
3. Creation of Interference and Harmonics
Interference occurs when the excess power that isn't processed through the amplifier contaminates a signal outside your desired frequency. This could manifest as secondary voices within your audio or a buzzing sound that contaminates the purity of your RF signal.
Harmonics is a term used to describe carbon copies of the signal your amplifier is receiving. An amplifier will not generate a signal if it is stable. Using an amplifier that isn't powerful enough for your transmissions could cause the creation of a second or third RF signal that mimics the original signal received.
Harmonics clog up the electromagnetic spectrum and can prevent the clear transmission of RF signals outside your own. Ensuring that your RF amplifier is powerful enough to accommodate your signal's peak power is the best way to avoid problems with interference and harmonics.
Improper amplifiers can cause many problems that will compromise your RF signal transmissions. Carefully calculate your signal modulation and peak power needs to avoid the problems caused by an improper RF amplifier in the future.
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