# principles of frequency to voltage converter

#### blue6x

Joined Apr 6, 2005
38
good day to everyone again. i would like to ask if someone could explain the logic behind this frequency to voltage conversion, for tachometer application with analog output. my input is signal frequency and i need an output in voltage. The circuit is using the IC NJM4151 (attached file).
The input is fed in pin 7 and the ouput is at pin 1.
Just would like to ask what is the formula that would invert a frequency to a voltage using this IC or perhaps other IC that has similar application.......

#### David Bridgen

Joined Feb 10, 2005
278
Originally posted by blue6x@Apr 20 2005, 06:55 AM
good day to everyone again. i would like to ask if someone could explain the logic behind this frequency to voltage conversion, for tachometer application with analog output. my input is signal frequency and i need an output in voltage. The circuit is using the IC NJM4151 (attached file).
The input is fed in pin 7 and the ouput is at pin 1.
Just would like to ask what is the formula that would invert a frequency to a voltage using this IC or perhaps other IC that has similar application.......
[post=7105]Quoted post[/post]​
The data sheet in your attachment clearly explains the operation of the device in both modes. I can't impove on that.

Figure 5 shows the formula which relates input frequency to output voltage.

#### David Bridgen

Joined Feb 10, 2005
278
Originally posted by blue6x@Apr 20 2005, 06:55 AM
good day to everyone again. i would like to ask if someone could explain the logic behind this frequency to voltage conversion, for tachometer application with analog output. my input is signal frequency and i need an output in voltage. The circuit is using the IC NJM4151 (attached file).
The input is fed in pin 7 and the ouput is at pin 1.
Just would like to ask what is the formula that would invert a frequency to a voltage using this IC or perhaps other IC that has similar application.......
[post=7105]Quoted post[/post]​

#### hgmjr

Joined Jan 28, 2005
9,029
David has correctly directed you to the section of the datasheet where you will find the equation that allows you to compute the voltage output from the device for a given input frequency when the device is used as an F-to-V converter.

If that is all you needed, then you can ignore the explanation that follows.

I reviewed the datasheet that you supplied in your post and what follows is my understanding of the way the device operates when used as an F-to-V converter.

The device is made up of 3 basic sections

- a voltage comparator
- a one-shot
- a constant current source

The input frequency signal feeds the comparator whose output is used to trigger the one-shot. The pulse from the one-shot is used to enable the constant current source for a period of time governed by the width of the pulse generated by the one-shot. The constant current source is used to charge the capacitor/resistor combination that is connected to pin 1.

The voltage that is developed across the capacitor Cb is a function of four things.

- The width of the pulse from the oneshot
- The magnitude of the current being supplied by the constant current source
- The value of the resistor Rb
- The incoming Frequency signal

The maximum voltage across Cb can be computed by multiplying Rb times the magnitude of the current from the constant current source. In figure 5. we have 100000 ohms times 138.7 microamps which comes to 13.87 volts. A reasonable value since the device is being powered by 15 volts.

Basically the device works on the duty cycle principle. You should be able to take the ratio of the one-shot pulse width "T" as determined by 1.1 times Ro times Co and divide it by the period of the incoming frequency to get a ratio that you then multiply by 13.87 volts to arrive at the voltage that will result on the capacitor/resistor connected to pin 1.

Don't forget to observe the warning that the input signal must be in the form of a pulse that is shorter than the pulse width of the one-shot. It is for this reason that the series capacitor and the resistor to ground at the input to the comparator was included in the design of figure 5. It differentiates the incoming square wave signal to satisfy this input pulse requirement.

If you elect to use this device you will need to consider the use of a buffer amplifier between the output at pin 1 and the next stage of your circuit to prevent unwanted loading of the signal at pin 1. The impedance at pin 1 is quite high so it will not tolerate any significant loading without upsetting the accuracy of the F-to-V converter's output.

hgmjr

#### hgmjr

Joined Jan 28, 2005
9,029
blue6x,

Maybe an example would be helpful to clarify my explanation.

Take the F-to-V circuit in figure 5 of the datasheet you posted and apply a 1KHz squarewave to the input.

In this circuit, T=1.1*Ro*Co so the pulsewidth of the one-shot is 75 microseconds. The period of the 1KHz squarewave is 1 millisecond. If my explanation holds true then the output voltage should be:

Vo = (0.000075*13.87)/(0.001). Solving for Vo, the output voltage at pin 1 should then be 1.04 volt.

If the input frequency is 10KHz:

Vo = (0.000075*13.87)/(0.0001). Solving for Vo, the outpupt voltage at pin 1 should be 10.4 volts.

You can see from the second example that as frequency increases the voltage at pin 1 will increase. Keep in mind that if the frequency at the input continues to increase there will come a point at which the output will reach the maximum voltage of 13.87 volts at which point the output will no longer change with increases in the input frequency. This maximum frequency can be determined by taking the inverse of the one-shot pulsewidth. In the case of the circuit in figure 5, Fmax = 1/(0.000075) or 13.3 KHz. In the circuit of figure 5, input frequencies within the operating range of the device that are greater than 13.3 KHz will produce a constant output of 13.87 volts at pin 1.

Let me know if anything that I have described is unclear.

hgmjr

#### blue6x

Joined Apr 6, 2005
38
thanks, you have clearly explained what i am looking for. I actually used that formula, but i cannot relate the exact output voltage. but you have made it explained very clear. i now know what happens inside, and what opeartion takes place inside. Thanks guys. Also david, thanks.

#### hgmjr

Joined Jan 28, 2005
9,029
I am glad we were able to de-mystify the F-to-V converter for you. My understanding of the device was also enhanced by the exercise.

By the way, you can begin with the formula presented in figure 5. of the datasheet and derive the duty-cycle version that I described. All that is needed is a couple of substitutions and the duty-cycle expression falls right out.

Good Luck.

hgmjr

#### enur

Joined Sep 13, 2008
13
hi to all (especially mr. david, blue6x, and hgmjr),

I have to face "that". I mean, I have to use "frequency to voltage" (circuit or IC, I don't know where is the best) for my final project. the problem is that the frequency input is high frequency (min 5 MHz). for beginner student, I am still confuse what should I do. would you all guys give some advice to me?
thanks before

#### muni

Joined Jul 29, 2008
45
The circuit is using the IC NJM4151 (attached file).

sir i'm a new member to this forum. i've been asking many of the members aboutt how to attach a file into the threads. sadly i could get any reply. please i request you to guide me in this regard. my email is psmuni@gmail.com

thanking you sir

#### hgmjr

Joined Jan 28, 2005
9,029
sir i'm a new member to this forum. i've been asking many of the members aboutt how to attach a file into the threads. sadly i could get any reply. please i request you to guide me in this regard. my email is psmuni@gmail.com

thanking you sir
Greeting muni,

You can go to the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) link in the menu line at the top of the forum page and then read the section on posting in the forum.

hgmjr

#### enur

Joined Sep 13, 2008
13
thank's for you Mr. Muni.
But forgive me, I am still confuse.

I have saw the datasheet of NJM4151. Based on my read, the frequency operation of IC is 1.0Hz - 100kHz.
so, would you like to give me some advice again how to increase the frequency operation up to 5MHz (for example).
I just need the FVC mode.

my hand is also widely open to all member who will give some advice to me.

thank you.

#### thingmaker3

Joined May 16, 2005
5,084
Based on my read, the frequency operation of IC is 1.0Hz - 100kHz.
so, would you like to give me some advice again how to increase the frequency operation up to 5MHz (for example).
First run the i/p through a divide-by-n counter or divide-by-n pre-scalar where n is somewhere between 20 and 5,000,000. Run the counter/pre-scalar o/p to the FVC.

#### muni

Joined Jul 29, 2008
45
Greeting muni,

You can go to the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) link in the menu line at the top of the forum page and then read the section on posting in the forum.

hgmjr
sir i've been following the instructions given by some of the senior members. i'm able to attach a pdf file but not ms word document(2007 version). evry tim i'm receiving a comment as invalid file.
sir i can send n pdf form but i don't have all my files in pdf form
finally i don't even have the software to convert text into pdf.
any further help u can provide, i'll definitely welcome you sir. sorry for the misleading of the threads.

#### enur

Joined Sep 13, 2008
13
First run the i/p through a divide-by-n counter or divide-by-n pre-scalar where n is somewhere between 20 and 5,000,000. Run the counter/pre-scalar o/p to the FVC.
thank's for you Mr. thingmaker3. I get your explanation (even just little). but I am still not sure what exactly to do "that". would you like to do more explanation for me, divide-by-n counter or divide-by-n pre-scaler (with equation of n for example)? honestly, this will be my first experience to use divide-by-n counter or divide-by-n pre-scaler. I am really helpfull by this forum.

#### beenthere

Joined Apr 20, 2004
15,819
To Muni - save your files as plain text (.txt extension). They post up with no problem.

To enur - if your pulse frequency is too high for the F to V converter, then you can use logic IC's to divide the frequency down by some amount. Dividing by factors of 2 and 10 is pretty easy. If you have a 1 MHz pulsetrain, dividing it by 10 makes it 100KHz, for instance.

Sigh, I should be placing things into separate threads....

#### enur

Joined Sep 13, 2008
13
To enur - if your pulse frequency is too high for the F to V converter, then you can use logic IC's to divide the frequency down by some amount. Dividing by factors of 2 and 10 is pretty easy. If you have a 1 MHz pulsetrain, dividing it by 10 makes it 100KHz, for instance.
thank's for you beenthere.
This is interesting. The following question is how about the "data" if the frequency is divided? Is there some missing? how to repair this "missing"? n may I know what IC used to divide frequency by factors of 10?

this forum really helpfull to me. #### thingmaker3

Joined May 16, 2005
5,084
twould you like to do more explanation for me, divide-by-n counter or divide-by-n pre-scaler
Beenthere has accurately described the counter. A pre-scalar is simply a counter with a much larger division.

The following question is how about the "data" if the frequency is divided? Is there some missing? how to repair this "missing"?
What kind of "data" are we talking about? FM reception? Manchester encoding? Some kinds of "data" will not be affected. Others will be impossible with the scheme we are discussing. This topic is about FVC, not "data." What is your application?

#### enur

Joined Sep 13, 2008
13
my application is to process HF so that it can be used by some tools for its process. for example, we have to process HF signal to be used for soft tissue detection. for that reason, I think I may convert the frequency to voltage first so that it can be processed easily.

Based on this forum, "the way" to process HF to voltage is the frequency divided by n factors. so, I am worrying about the missing "data" which is necessary. am I false?

I am sorry for this inconvenience. if the topic is not in this forum, how to make new tittle forum for this explanation?

thank's before.

#### enur

Joined Sep 13, 2008
13
why are there no response?

The digital Oscilloscope may be an example. How to "read" the input signal up to MHz and it can be displayed?

I am analogying my application. FVC will be used as Rx so that we can process the voltage. For example it can be used for Oscilloscope.

#### hgmjr

Joined Jan 28, 2005
9,029
why are there no response?

The digital Oscilloscope may be an example. How to "read" the input signal up to MHz and it can be displayed?

I am analogying my application. FVC will be used as Rx so that we can process the voltage. For example it can be used for Oscilloscope.
enur,

I would suggest that you abandon this thread and start a new one. I think the reason that you have not gotten the level of responses that you seek is because you posted your thread at the end of an existing one. A dormant one at that.

hgmjr