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Review Summary of Single Stage Ampliers

AMiglani2014@gmail.com
Last Updated: June 24, 2014
Contents
1 Introduction to Single Stage Ampliers 2
1.1 Basic Concepts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
1.2 Common-Source Stage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
1.2.1 Common-Source Stage with Resistive Load . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
1.2.2 CS Stage with Diode-Connected Load . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
1.2.3 CS Stage with Current-Source Load . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
1.2.4 CS Stage with Triode Load . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
1.2.5 CS Stage with Source Degeneration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
1
Chapter 1
Introduction to Single Stage
Ampliers
1.1 Basic Concepts
1. Most of the signals are too small to driver a load and requires amplication. Amplication is one
of basic building block of feedback systems.
An important part of a designers job is to use proper approximations so as to create a simple
mental picture of a complicated circuit. The intuition thus gained makes it possible to formulate
the behavior of most circuits by inspection rather than by lengthy calculations.
from: Design of Analog CMOS Integrated Circuits by Behzad Razavi
2. There are four basic types of single-stage ampliers
(a) Common-Source
(b) Common-Gate
(c) Source Followers (Common-Drain)
(d) Cascode Congurations
3. The following aspects of the performance of ampliers are important
(a) Gain
(b) Speed
(c) Power Dissipation
(d) Supply Voltage
(e) Linearity
(f) Noise
(g) Maximum Voltage Swing
(h) Input Impedance
(i) Output Impedance
In practice most of these parameters trade with each other and makes the design a multi-dimensional
optimization problem. Therefore, intuition and experience play important roles to arrive at an ac-
ceptable compromise.
2
Figure 1.1: Multi-dimensional Tradeos Analog Design
Figure 1.2: Common-Source Stage with Resistive Load
1.2 Common-Source Stage
1.2.1 Common-Source Stage with Resistive Load
1. By virtue of transconductance of a CS stage, a MOSFET converts variations in its gate-source
voltage to a small-signal drain current, which can pass through a resistor to generate a small-signal
output voltage.
2. Input impedance of this circuit is very high at low frequencies.
3. If input voltage increases from zero, M
1
is o and V
out
= V
DD
. As V
in
approaches V
TH
, M
1
begins
to turn on, drawing current from R
D
and lowering V
out
. If V
DD
is not excessively low, M
1
turns
on in saturation. The current voltage relationship is given by
V
out
= V
DD
I
D
R
D
= V
DD
R
D
1
2

n
C
ox
W
L
(V
in
V
t
)
2
where channel length modulation is neglected. Here V
in
, V
out
and V
t
are small-signal quantities.
4. As V
in
is further increased, M
1
enters into trode region.
V
out
= V
DD
R
D
1
2

n
C
ox
W
L

2(V
in
V
t
)V
out
V
2
out

5. As V
in
is further increased, M
1
enters into the deep triode region, V
out
2(V
in
V
t
).
V
out
= V
DD
R
ds
R
ds
+R
D
= V
DD
1
1 +
n
C
ox
W
L
R
D
(V
in
V
t
)
Since the transconductance drops in the triode region, we usually ensure that V
out
> (V
in
V
t
).
It means that M
1
should operate in saturation region for keeping constant transconductance and
linear amplication.
3
6. Small-signal low frequency gain
A
v
=
V
out
V
in
=

V
in

V
DD
R
D
1
2

n
C
ox
W
L
(V
in
V
TH
)
2

A
v
= R
D

n
C
ox
W
L
(V
in
V
TH
) = g
m
R
D
7. If signal swing is large the transconductance varies and this leads to a nonlinear operation of this
stage and the circuit operates in the large signal mode.
8. How do we maximize the voltage gain of a common-source stage?
A
v
= R
D
g
m
=
V
RD
I
D
g
m
=
V
RD
I
D

2
n
C
ox
I
D
(W/L) =
V
RD

I
D

2
n
C
ox
(W/L)
Therefore, the small-signal voltage gain is increased by increasing W/L or increasing V
RD
or de-
creasing I
D
if other parameters are constant. It is important to understand the trade-os resulting
from this equation.
(a) A larger MOS device size leads to larger device capacitances.
(b) A higher V
RD
limits the maximum voltage swings. If (V
DD
V
RD
) = (V )in V
t
), M
1
is at
the edge of the triode region, allowing only very small swing at the output and the input.
(c) If V
RD
remains constant and I
D
is reduced, then R
D
must increase, thereby leading to a
greater time constant at the output node.
It means there is a trade-os between gain, bandwidth and voltage swing. Lower
supply voltages further tighten these trade-os
9. For larger values of R
D
, the eect of channel modulation in M
1
becomes signicant.
V
out
= V
DD
R
D
1
2

n
C
ox
W
L
(V
in
V
t
)
2
(1 +V
out
)
V
out
V
in
= R
D

n
C
ox
W
L
(V
in
V
t
)(1 +V
out
) R
D
1
2

n
C
ox
W
L
(V
in
V
t
)
2

V
out
V
in
A
v
= R
D
g
m
R
D
I
D
A
v
A
v
=
g
m
R
D
1 +R
D
I
D
=
g
m
R
D
1 +
R
D
r
o
= g
m
(r
o
//R
D
)
r
o
is eect of channel length modulation. If R
D
r
o
, then eect of r
o
dominates over R
D
.
1.2.2 CS Stage with Diode-Connected Load
1. In many CMOS technologies, it is dicult to fabricate resistors with tightly-controlled values or
a reasonable physical size. Consequently, it is desirable to replace R
D
with a MOS transistor. A
MOSFET can operate as a small-signal resistor if its gate and drain are shorted. This is called
diode-connected transistor. It exhibits a small-signal behavior similar to a two-terminal resistor.
Note that this transistor is always in saturation because drain and gate have same potential (V
GD
<
V
t
for NMOS and V
GD
> V
T
for PMOS transistors).
2. The voltage across dependent current source g
m
v
gs
is v
gs
. Consequently, the equivalent resistance
is (r
o
||
1
g
m
)
1
g
m
.
3. If body eect exists, the V
SB
is equal to the voltage between source and ground. The body terminal
is connected to V
SS
for NMOS and to V
DD
for PMOS. In this case, V
SS
is at ground potential.
So, the drain terminal is connected to small-signal ground; V
SB
= V
SD
= V
DS
= V
r
o
. Therefore,
equivalent resistance of two teminal device becomes

1
g
m
+g
mb
4
Figure 1.3: Common-Source Stage with Diode Connected Load
4. The impedance seen at the source of M
2
as per gure 1.3 is lower when body eect is included.
The load impedance for M
1
is
1
g
m
+g
mb
. Therefore, the small-signal voltage gain becomes
A
v
= g
m1
1
g
m
+g
mb
=
g
m1
g
m2
1
1 +
=

(W/L)
1
(W/L)
2
1
1 +
since I
D1
= I
D2
.
5. It means that if the variation of with respect to output voltage is neglected, the gain is independent
of bias current and voltage so long as M
1
stays in saturation. In other words, as input and output
signals vary, the gain remains relatively constant, indicating that input-output characteristic is
relatively linear. This linear characteristic is shown with small-signal analysis.
6. This linear behavior is also proved by large signal analysis. Neglecting channel-length modulation
for simplicity, we have
I
D1
= I
D2

n
C
ox
2

W
L 1

(V
in
V
t1
)
2
=

n
C
ox
2

W
L

2
(V
in
V
t2
)
2
If the variation of V
t
with V
out
is small, the circuit exhibits a linear input-output characteristic.
7. When I
D
decrease to very low values V
GS2
V
t2
and V
out
V
DD
V
t2
. In reality, the subthreshold
conduction in M
2
eventually brings V
out
to V
DD
if I
D
approaches zero, but at very low current
levels, the nite capacitance at the output node slows down the change from V
DD
V
t
.
8. If V
in
< V
t
, the output voltage remains at V
DD
V
t
. For V
in
> V
t
, V
out
follows approximately a
straight line. As V
in
exceeds V
out
+V
t1
, M
1
enters the triode region, and the characteristic becomes
nonlinear.
9. The body eect in diode connected CS conguration is eliminated by using PMOS
diode-connected transistor.
A
v
=

n
(W/L)
1

p
(W/L)
2
10. To achieve a high gain the dimension of M
1
should be higher than dimension of M
2
. In a sense, a
high gain requires a strong input device and weak load device. In addition to disproportionately wide
or long transistors, a high gain translates to another important limitation: reduction in allowable
voltage swings. Specically, since, I
D1
= |I
D2
|,

W
L

1
(V
GS1
V
t1
)
2
=
n

W
L

2
(V
GS2
V
t2
)
2
5
revealing that
A
v

|V
GS2
V
t2
|
V
GS1
V
t1
therefore, overdrive voltage of M
2
must be much higher than M
1
. For example, V
GS1
V
t1
=
200mV , and |V
t2
| = 0.7V , we have |V
GS2
| = 2.7V , severely limiting the output swing. This is
another example of the trade-os. Note that, with diode connected loads, the swing is constrained
by both the required overdrive voltage and the threshold voltage.
A
2
v
=

n
(W/L)
1

p
(W/L)
2
A
v
|V
GS2
V
t2
|
V
GS1
V
t1
=

n
(W/L)
1

p
(W/L)
2
A
v
=

n
(W/L)
1
(V
GS1
V
t1
)

p
(W/L)
2
|V
GS2
V
t2
|
=

n
C
ox
(W/L)
1
(V
GS1
V
t1
)

p
C
ox
(W/L)
2
|V
GS2
V
t2
|
A
v
=
g
m1
g
m2
11. In modern CMOS technology, channel-length modulation is quite signicant and, more importantly,
the behavior of transistors notably departs from square law. Thus, the gain of a diode-connected
CS stage becomes
A
v
= g
m1

1
g
m2
r
o2
r
o1

1.2.3 CS Stage with Current-Source Load


1. The voltage gain relationship A
v
= g
m
R
D
suggests that we increase the load impedance of the CS
stage can be increased by increasing the load impedance R
D
. With a resistor or diode-connected
load, however, increasing the load resistance limits the ouput swing.
2. A more practical approach is to replace the load with a current source. Both transistors, M
1
, a
NMOS and M
2
, a PMOS, operate in saturation. Since, the load impedance seen at the output
node is equal to r
o1
r
o2
, the gain is
A
v
= g
m1
(r
o1
r
o2
)
3. Note that, the output impedance and the minimum required |V
DS2
| of M
2
are less
strongly coupled than the value and voltage drop of a resistor. The voltage |V
DS2(min)
| =
|V
GS2
V
t2
| can be reduced to a few hundred millivolts by simply increasing the width
of M
2
. If r
o2
is not suciently high, the length and width of M
2
can be increased to achieve
a smaller while maintaining the same overdrive voltage. The penalty is the large capacitance
introuced by M
2
at the output node.
4. The output impedance of MOSFETs at a given drain current can be scaled by changing the length,
i.e., to the rst order, 1/L and hence r
o
L/I
D
because =
1
I
D
. We may surmise that
longer the transistors yield a higher voltage gain.
5. If L
1
is scaled by a factor (> 1), then W
1
may need to be scaled proportionally as
well. This is because, for a given drain current, V
GS1
V
t1
1/

(W/L)
1
, i.e., if W
1
is not scaled, the overdrive voltage increases, limiting the output swing. Also, since
g
m1
1/

(W/L)
1
, scaling up only L
1
lowers g
m1
. The intrinsic gain of the transistor is given
by the following expression
g
m1
r
o1
=

W
L

n
C
ox
I
D

1
I
D
indicating that the gain increases with L because depends more strongly on L than g
m
does.
Also, note that g
m
r
o
decreases as I
D
increases. Increasing L
2
while keeping W
2
constant
increases r
o2
and hence the voltage gain, but at the cost of higher |V
DS2
| required to
maintain M
2
in saturation.
6
1.2.4 CS Stage with Triode Load
1. A MOS device operating in deep triode region behaves as a resistor and can therefore serve as the
load in a CS stage. The gate of M
2
is biased at a suciently low level voltage, ensuring the load
is in deep triode region for all output voltage swings.
R
on2
=
1

p
C
ox
(W/L)
2
(V
DD
V
b
|V
t2
|)
2. The principal drawback of this circuit stems from the dependence of R
on2
upon
p
C
ox
, V
b
and
V
t2
. Since
p
C
ox
and V
t2
vary with process and temperature and since generating a precise value
of V
b
requires additional complexity, this circuit is dicult to use, this circuit is dicult to use.
Triode loads, however, consume less voltage headroom then do diode-connected devices because
V
out(max)
= V
DD
for triode load and V
out(max)
= V
DD
V
t2
for diode connected load.
1.2.5 CS Stage with Source Degeneration
1. In some applications, the square-law dependence of the drain current upon the overdrive voltage
introduces excessive nonlinearity, making it desirable to soften the device characteristic. The near
linear behavior is achieved using diode-connected load. Alternatively, this can be accomplished by
placing a degeneration resistor in series with the source terminal. As V
in
increases, so do I
D
and
the voltage drop across R
S
. That is, a fraction of V
in
appears across the resistor rather than as
the gate-source overdrive, thus leading to a smoother variation of I
D
.
2. The equivalent transconductance
G
m
=
g
m
1 +g
m
R
S
The small-signal voltage gain is thus equal to
A
v
=
g
m
R
D
1 +g
m
R
D
3. It means that as R
S
increases, G
m
becomes a weaker function of g
m
and hence the drain current.
If R
S
is very large, most of the signal appears across R
S
and gain becomes a linearized function.
The linearization is achieved at the cost of lower gain (and higher noise).
4. G
m
in the presence of body eect is derived as
G
m
=
g
m
r
o
R
S
+r
o
[1 + (g
m
+g
mb
)r
o
]
7