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Discrete And Integrated Amplifiers

Electronic amplifiers using separate transistors, resistors, and capacitors wired into place one by one are called discrete amplifiers. Discrete amplifiers have been all but superseded by integrated circuits (ICs) for small-signal The power amplifier for the Antares fusion laser. Photograph by Ray Nelson. Phototake NYC. Reproduced by permission.

applications. Vast numbers of transistors and many supporting components are contained on an IC's single silicon crystal chip. Circuit boards now use just a few encapsulated chips in place of the hundreds of individual components once required. An engineer or technician normally does not need to be aware of an IC's internal circuitry, further simplifying their use.

See also Electronics.



Cannon, Don L. Understanding Solid-State Electronics. 5th ed. SAMS division of Prentice Hall Pub. Co., 1991.

Donald Beaty


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Electron tube

—Active device based on control of electrons with electric fields.


—Signal fed from output back to an am plifier's input.


—Measure of increase in voltage, power, or current.


—Device that converts electrical signals into sound.


—One-millionth of a watt.


—An electric circuit component that opposes the flow of current.

Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Ambiguity - Ambiguity to Anticolonialism in Middle East - Ottoman Empire And The Mandate SystemAmplifier - Amplifiers And Energy, Cascading Amplifiers, Discrete And Integrated Amplifiers - Efficiency