What is Function generator: Definition and 35 Discussions

A function generator is usually a piece of electronic test equipment or software used to generate different types of electrical waveforms over a wide range of frequencies. Some of the most common waveforms produced by the function generator are the sine wave , square wave, triangular wave and sawtooth shapes. These waveforms can be either repetitive or single-shot (which requires an internal or external trigger source). Integrated circuits used to generate waveforms may also be described as function generator ICs.
In addition to producing sine waves, function generators may typically produce other repetitive waveforms including sawtooth and triangular waveforms, square waves, and pulses. Another feature included on many function generators is the ability to add a DC offset.
Although function generators cover both audio and RF frequencies, they are usually not suitable for applications that need low distortion or stable frequency signals. When those traits are required, other signal generators would be more appropriate.
Some function generators can be phase-locked to an external signal source (which may be a frequency reference) or another function generator.Function generators are used in the development, test and repair of electronic equipment. For example, they may be used as a signal source to test amplifiers or to introduce an error signal into a control loop. Function generators are primarily used for working with analog circuits, related pulse generators are primarily used for working with digital circuits.

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  1. R

    Burst period on function generator

    Hi, I am having to refresh my oscilloscope knowledge and am confused about one last function generator setting... Burst period. If I have 1 cycle at say 700 kHz it is 1.43us. If I set number of cycles to 10 then that is 10 * 1.43us = 14.3us time. This is my ON burst. So what is the burst...
  2. matthieu1973

    Designing a ripple low PS for DDS function generator

    Hello to all. I am trying to design a ripple free (read as ripple free as possible) power supply (PS) for my DIY DDS function generator. I am (was) in the possession of the hyland 5v to 12v PS which wrecked due to a stupid action on my side, my bad. so i was going to repair it, but i found that...
  3. A

    Why does a coil squash my function generator signal?

    Greetings, In the first picture below, I create a 5 volts sine amplitude signal with a frequency of about 100 Hertz. The 3 Ohm, 400 turn coil (that will eventually be part of a transformer) is not initially connected. The output waveform from my function generator completely matches my input...
  4. G

    Testing a Microcontroller with a Function Generator

    Hello, I have more of a mechanical background so I was looking to get some help from someone with an electrical background with this. I am trying to use a BK Precision Function Generator (datasheet: https://bkpmedia.s3.amazonaws.com/downloads/manuals/en-us/4017A_manual.pdf) to send a signal to...
  5. L

    Generate sine wave with signal generator on scope

    I'm new to electronics, and using my new equiptment I would like to generate a sine signal on my function generator and display it on my oscilloscope. Equipment: * The scope is Rigol DS1054Z * Function generator is a $60 digital chinese. My problem is: When I plug connect the function...
  6. G

    Op-amp circuits and noise at high frequency/low amplitude

    Hi everyone. I am tasked with amplifying an input voltage of around 1nA at anywhere between 10,000kHz to 1MHz to a sufficient amount. We've been using op-amps in multiple stages in series to amplify the signal. At our disposal we have a function generator, oscilloscope, breadboard and...
  7. G

    Op-amps, noise and high frequency/low current input signal

    Hello everyone, In my lab class we've been given task of using op-amps to amplify a current of 1nA and frequency of order of madnitude 1MHz to a discernable level. We've been given breadboards, a selection of different op amps, resistors, an oscilloscope etc to achieve this task. We've made...
  8. muzcategui

    Hello, i with lab equipment for electrochemical harvesting of microalgae

    Hello, I'm an Aquaculture Engineering student at lima. I'm trying to do an experiment of electrochemical harvesting of microalgae. But it seems my weakness at physics its getting in the way plus i don't know to well how to operate the equipment which none knows either since its new to the lab. I...
  9. D

    A Understanding Function Generator Noise for Calibrating Noise Measurements

    I want to calibrate my measurement setup for noise measurements. I have taken some measurements but I need to confirm that my measurement correlates with the Johnson noise theory. To do this, I have tried measuring resistors but I seem not to get the right results. My supervisor then...
  10. Sveral

    Connecting an External Audio Source to a DDS-100 Function Generator

    Hello, I wanted to know, if it`s possible and how it to go about connecting an external audio source, for example, an mp3 player to the circuit of a DDS-100 Function generator, so that it outputs the audio from the mp3 in the selected wave form...
  11. L

    Engineering Characterization of an Op-amp Function Generator Circuit

    Homework Statement I need to characterize the circuit below in order to compare measured data to theory. Can you determine any the theoretical relationships for the frequency, amplitude, gain of the two voltage outputs? I measured the output voltage of each op-amp while varying both of the...
  12. D

    How to make a delta function signal in a circuit?

    Basically I want to test my analog circuit using a forcing function that has a form of a delta function. The function generator I use outputs sine wave, triangular wave and square wave (+ve and -ve output in one period). Are there any ways to produce a square wave that has an output for like 5%...
  13. J

    How to generate a pulsed signal on a function generator?

    See attached file. I want to generate a waveform that looks like this using a function generator, where it repeats every f=1/T and the duty cycle is (t_d/t)x100.
  14. C

    Determining a specific frequency to make the ball bounce

    So, here's the set-up: A small stereo speaker is connected to a function generator. A concave lens, bearing a ball is place over the speaker. Now, the frequency is slowly increased in the function generator. My question is, Will the ball really bounce at a certain frequency? Because I am not...
  15. J

    A function generator that cannot kill you? Very low currents.

    Hi, I am looking for a function generator that if you hooked up to yourself, wouldn't kill you. I need something that can output very low currents through the skin without harm. Honestly a 9V battery causes too high of a current for my purpose, but I do need to very finely tune the current. Can...
  16. V

    How to build a function generator

    I have to deliver a project for my analog electronics course and I wanted to build a synthesizer (the simplest version possible since I am a total beginner at this). It would basically be a function generator with a knob used to control the frequency (with maybe banana plugs for sound output)...
  17. E

    Need to Make DC supply & Function Generator

    I wanted advice I saw that DC supply, function generators, and Digital Oscilloscopes were really expensive and I wanted to know is there some way you can use software to turn your PC into a variable DC supply and/or a Function Generator thanks
  18. K

    How can I create a high frequency signal generator?

    Creating a signal generator Hi all, i want to create a high frequency signal generator. However i have no clue how to create a wave. I am looking in crystal oscillator which have pretty precise frequency and having a good stability. I also look in pierce circuit oscillators but i still...
  19. Y

    How to increase the output power of function generator?

    Hi, I am currently working on science project. But I have a problem. I am conducting Chladni pattern experiment and so I got a function generator (signal generator). But for Chladni pattern experiment, a Function generator has to have an output of 10W. The maximum output of the function...
  20. K

    Function Generator for Sequences of Reals

    This paper is still subject to being edited and I am an amatuer mathematician, so there may be some mistakes, typos, and "amatuer" notation. I really cannot believe the result here, so I assume something may obviously be wrong yet, and I just cannot figure it out. I am a CPA, and fairly good...
  21. P

    Calculating the output impedance of a function generator

    Hi everyone. I'm doing an experiment where I measure the capacitance of a capacitor. However I want to make sure that the output impedance of the function generator is low (to get accurate results). My circuit is attached. How do I calculate the impedance from the information provided? Help is...
  22. S

    Can't have high voltage function generator. What about low voltage Tesla coil?

    According to many knowledgeable people on the internet, an affordable "high" voltage function generator does not exist. I would have liked to have had electrodes operating at >50v with frequencies up to 15 Mhz but it seems such a function generator is out of my reach. So I want to know if a...
  23. D

    Any suggestions? - Function generator

    Does anyone have a lab bench function generator that they really like? I'm going to be buying one, and was curious if anyone had any opinions on which one is nice or if they bought one and thought it was a piece of junk. I don't really care about specs, more just which ones you prefer to use.
  24. S

    Function Generator: Up to 1kHz & 10Amps

    Hi guys, I need a signal generator that can provide frequencies up to 1kHz and also can deliver up to 10Amps. Any suggestions or recommendations? cheers
  25. S

    Calculating Current from a Function Generator

    I wasn't sure where to post this, but I am a physics student working on a thesis and the experiment I ran involved using a function generator to generate a magnetic field (wire was bent into a loop). I am trying to figure out how to convert the frequency (15 MHz) and Vpp (10V) to current so I...
  26. L

    Can a MOSFET be used to vary frequency in a function generator?

    I am trying to build a function generator and I am unsure of how to build a circuit to vary frequency. Would I use a MOSFET? Can someone help me?
  27. B

    Function generator for wireless energy experiment

    My problem is that I am trying to, in this case, send a 50 KHz signal through an LC circuit to a receiving coil (very short distance by the way) so that the secondary coil can power an ipod. It's more so a first attempt and an experiment because the 50 KHz isn't a very powerful signal but I am...
  28. G

    How to connect function generator software on laptop to breadboard?

    I'm using a software to generatre sine waves for my op amp circuit. I know you have to use the headphone jack to output the signal, but I don't know how I would go about connecting my headphones to my circuit. The problem is I don't know how I have to cut my headphone wire for ground and etc...
  29. J

    Question about rigol DG1022 function generator

    I just bought a new rigol DG1022 function generator and I noticed that when I turn the voltage higher than 2V peak to peak, the FG emits a faint high pitched sound. It's barely audible; maybe around 15 kHz. Is that normal for a digital function generator, or does that mean that something is...
  30. S

    What is function generator?

    hi all I have seen in my dc lab that there are some devices which are called function generator I want to know what is function generator? for which purpose this is used and how to operate it?
  31. C

    Cheap function generator options.

    I'm playing around with a toroidal coil and eventually want to use it for some wireless power transfer experiments. My problem is that i need a function generator that can output around 1-5 mhz, and they are kinda pricey. I'm not going to need to know the precise frequency I'm producing, just to...
  32. K

    Issues testing a tachometer with a function generator

    I am on an assignment to test the domain of input values of a tachometer, and what output (deflection) different values correspond to. In other words, what's the minimum and maximum signals and what does the curve look like? The trouble is I can't get ANY useful information. The tach has...
  33. J

    Purchasing a Function Generator

    I recently acquired a Texronix 454 and would now like to purchase a function generator. What would be a good cheap f.g. to accompany the 454.
  34. J

    AC Current Source from a function generator

    First of all, i do not know if this is the ideal forum. If not, mods, please move it. Second of all, I know the title is redudant but whatever. Anyway, I am doing some experimental work that requires us to be able to controll the current, but we want to have it be a sine wave. We had been...
  35. D

    Function generator amplification

    Hello, How can I increase voltage and current from a function generator and still keep an accurate waveform? I want to provide AC power to an electromagnet but my function generator does not have the power to drive it. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks