Is an AD converter a type of encoder/decoder?

  • #1
Femme_physics
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According to wiki:

An encoder is a device, circuit, transducer, software program, algorithm or person that converts information from one format or code to another, for the purposes of standardization, speed, secrecy, security, or saving space by shrinking size.

So can we call an AD converter an encoder?
 

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  • #2
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Not very common, but you can categorize as encoder.....From analog to digital encoder.
 
  • #3
Bobbywhy
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I agree, an A/D converter is exactly an encoder. So is a D/A converter. Both fit the definition you posted.
 
  • #4
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Hmm. After all A/D converter gives you a code. So its an encoder. But I think the D/A converter will be decoder.
 
  • #5
Bobbywhy
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the wiki definition posted in the OP is quite general:

"An encoder is a device, circuit, transducer, software program, algorithm or person that converts information from one format or code to another, for the purposes of standardization, speed, secrecy, security, or saving space by shrinking size."

IMO, it includes The D/A converter as well.
 
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  • #6
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Well, I did not fully read the portion about "one format or code". In that case, both A/D and D/A converter will be encoder as well as decoder.
 
  • #7
Bobbywhy
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Well, I did not fully read the portion about "one format or code". In that case, both A/D and D/A converter will be encoder as well as decoder.

Koldshare: No Problemo. I often don't see obvious stuff the older I get...some call it "a senior moment". Ha Ha.

Bobbywhy
 
  • #8
Femme_physics
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I'm glad there is an agreement on this :) I wish wiki defined an A/D converter as such.
 
  • #9
sophiecentaur
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I don't think it really matters as the term is not strictly defined and mainly a matter of fashion.
No, if you want me to get picky about the terms that people use for really important issues . . . . . .:smile:
 
  • #10
Femme_physics
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I don't think it really matters as the term is not strictly defined and mainly a matter of fashion.
No, if you want me to get picky about the terms that people use for really important issues . . . . . .:smile:


Fair enough, I'm just trying to put things in categories... you know, maintaining some order in my notes :) Thanks for the replies!
 
  • #11
sophiecentaur
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Fair enough, I'm just trying to put things in categories... you know, maintaining some order in my notes :) Thanks for the replies!

Just remember, Physics is not botany. It's relationships not classification that drive Physics.

Apologies to any eminent passing botanists but I remember reading that Niuclear Physics (this was in the Early 20the Century) was getting to be a bit like Botany as they were just finding more and more species of Nuclear Stuff and had nowhere to put them. At least they're beginning to pull it all together these days.
 
  • #12
phinds
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Personally, I think that calling an A/D converter an "encoder" is being pretty liberal with the term. I always think of an encoder as a device that takes some form of information (an output of a transducer, say) and encodes it in some form of electrical code (such as PCM). That MAY be an overly strict interpretation, but I think it avoids confusion.
 
  • #13
sophiecentaur
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So where would a 'position encoder' fit? You can buy them.

Classification is supposed to be our servant and not our master.
 
  • #14
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I think the definition you're using could be applied to an A/D, but no one ever calls an A/D by itself an encoder and it will just confuse people. Also, I think an A/D has a very specific purpose and definition, and it should not be lumped in with other components called encoders. Likewise, encoders have very specific purposes in electronics, and rarely would the word encoder pop into someone's head when they are thinking of converting an analog voltage to a digital value, at least in that immediate step.

"for the purposes of standardization, speed, secrecy, security, or saving space by shrinking size". I think in this last part, you could cross out speed, secrecy, security, and saving space (unless you consider a complete analog design as taking more space than digital). The only purpose that might fit an ADC is standardization since the rest of a system could use digital values as a standard.

For example, is a television an encoder by that definition? It converts complicated analog electrical signals to audio and light signals which are the standard format humans use to view that information. I can't wait to get home and watch the simpsons on my voltage to photon encoder tonight.
 
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  • #15
sophiecentaur
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If a TV system were used for OCR, reading handwritten symbols and converting them to ASCII then it would, undoubtedly be an ENCODER. It is were used to watch a football match then, perhaps not. If it were used to keep a door open then it could be called a DOOR STOP. Why does this matter so much?
We're talking Editorial Style here, not Physics or Engineering.
 
  • #16
Femme_physics
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Just remember, Physics is not botany. It's relationships not classification that drive Physics.

QUOTE OF THE YEAR!!!

:approve:
 
  • #17
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Why does this matter so much?

Well, that's sort of the point, calling an ADC an encoder doesn't mean much. It may be beneficial to think of an ADC as an encoder for conceptual or learning reasons, and it may give rise to new ideas on how to use an ADC. But, I think it is being conservative to reject calling an ADC an encoder when an ADC has a very specific function and purpose.
 
  • #19
sophiecentaur
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Well, that's sort of the point, calling an ADC an encoder doesn't mean much. It may be beneficial to think of an ADC as an encoder for conceptual or learning reasons, and it may give rise to new ideas on how to use an ADC. But, I think it is being conservative to reject calling an ADC an encoder when an ADC has a very specific function and purpose.

You are just too late to start getting this straightened out, I'm afraid. If you can buy something on EBAY called an optical encoder (which is an ADC by any standard) then Encoder is a word that has an established (although, possibly offensive) use when applied to some forms of ADC.

A the kids say: "Get over it"
 
  • #20
jim hardy
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Some folks call this a handle
some call it a torque amplifier

http://cdn4.stanleysupplyservices.com/images/p/127-920.01_s310_p1._Vdfedaa6d_.jpg [Broken]

when in Rome...
 
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  • #21
the wiki definition posted in the OP is quite general:

"An encoder is a device, circuit, transducer, software program, algorithm or person that converts information from one format or code to another, for the purposes of standardization, speed, secrecy, security, or saving space by shrinking size."

IMO, it includes The D/A converter as well.

IMO, by itself no, due to the 'purposes' spec. A DAC or ADC doesn't serve to standardize, speed up, make secret, secure, or shrink anything. It merely converts one signal type to another. I also wouldn't call a rectifier an encoder nor an inverter a decoder.

sophiecentaur, your example of an optical encoder, IMO, is different. The optical encoder has the specific purpose of translating signal pulses into a position.
 
  • #22
sophiecentaur
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Other way round?
The position of the shaft isn't a secret. haha
 
  • #23
NascentOxygen
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Well, I did not fully read the portion about "one format or code". In that case, both A/D and D/A converter will be encoder as well as decoder.
IMO, the ADC would be a digital encoder; and the DAC would be an analog decoder. :smile:
 
  • #24
OldEngr63
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Well, just to be disagreeable, I will suggest that it does not meet the definition of the encoder as given. The last part of the definition had the words, ".... by shrinking size." What is the size of the analog signal? Until we can clearly define the size of the analog signal, I see no way to verify that the size is reduced.

Not that I can see that any of this is too important.
 
  • #25
sophiecentaur
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Well, just to be disagreeable, I will suggest that it does not meet the definition of the encoder as given. The last part of the definition had the words, ".... by shrinking size." What is the size of the analog signal? Until we can clearly define the size of the analog signal, I see no way to verify that the size is reduced.

Not that I can see that any of this is too important.

You always reduce the amount of information in an analogue signal when you digitally 'encode' it, however high the sample rate or the number of levels used.
 

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