function generator

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by samjesse, Feb 21, 2010.

  1. samjesse

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Sep 14, 2008
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    Hi

    Does a variac do anything a good function generator does not?
    i.e. vary AC from 0 to 260v...etc
    thx
     
  2. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    How much current can your "good" function generator supply? Variacs can supply in excess of 10 A.

    John
     
  3. bertus

    Administrator

    Apr 5, 2008
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    Hello,

    A variac is just an adjustable transformer.
    It will only work on the frequency that is supplied at the input.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autotransformer

    A function generator can produce a lot of wave forms and frequencies at low voltage ( upto 20 Vpp most times ).

    Greetings,
    Bertus
     
  4. samjesse

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Sep 14, 2008
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    A function generator controlling a power transistor can take care of the 10A.
    what about the AC signal. would a variac give a cleaner AC wave ones.
     
  5. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    You are mixing apples and oranges. A variac is a power device, meant to connect to house current. A function generator is a universal signal generator, not meant to provide power.

    A variac output is as clean as the input.
     
  6. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    The original question seems to be evolving. In other words, given enough additional parts, there is nothing that a Variac can do that a 5 HP gasoline engine cannot do.

    A Variac is not a signal generator, but a signal generator with enough additional parts can provide the same functions as a Variac. Why do that though?

    John
     
  7. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    Never did like the taste of orange pie.
     
  8. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
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    You want a sine-wave generator, then a transformer to boost the signal.
    The cleanliness of the signal has a lot to do with the quality of the components and the architecture of the project. Proper decoupling, isolation..
     
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