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Considering the PLL noise is much higher than the low phase noise amplifier, what is the typical application scenario for this category of amplifiers?

  • The most popular RF use case for a low phase noise amp in the LO chain is to boost up the input power to the LO port of the Mixer if the output power of the PLL+VCO circuit isn’t high enough for the minimum input power required on the LO port of the Mixer. For digital clocking applications, there is a use case for the gaining up the DAC output to improve the spectrum analyzers dynamic range.