16-Bit, 250Msps, High-Dynamic-Performance, Dual DAC with LVDS Inputs

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The MAX5878 is an advanced 16-bit, 250Msps, dual digital-to-analog converter (DAC). This DAC meets the demanding performance requirements of signal synthesis applications found in wireless base stations and other communications applications. Operating from +3.3V and +1.8V supplies, this dual DAC offers exceptional dynamic performance such as 76dBc spurious-free dynamic range (SFDR) at fOUT = 16MHz and supports update rates of 250Msps, with a power dissipation of only 296mW.

The MAX5878 utilizes a current-steering architecture that supports a 2mA to 20mA full-scale output current range, and allows a 0.1VP-P to 1VP-P differential output voltage swing. The device features an integrated +1.2V bandgap reference and control amplifier to ensure high-accuracy and low-noise performance. A separate reference input (REFIO) allows for the use of an external reference source for optimum flexibility and improved gain accuracy.

The clock inputs of the MAX5878 accept both LVDS and LVPECL-compatible voltage levels. The device features an interleaved data input that allows a single LVDS bus to support both DACs. The MAX5878 is available in a 68-pin QFN package with an exposed paddle (EP) and is specified for the extended temperature range (-40°C to +85°C).

Refer to the MAX5876 and MAX5877 data sheets for pin-compatible 12-bit and 14-bit versions of the MAX5878, respectively. Refer to the MAX5875 datasheet for a CMOS-compatible version of the MAX5878.

See a parametric table of the complete family of pin-compatible 12-/14-/16-bit high-speed DACs.
MAX5878: Pin Configuration MAX5878: Pin Configuration Enlarge+

Key Features

  • 250Msps Output Update Rate
  • Noise Spectral Density = -164dBFS/Hz at fOUT = 16MHz
  • Excellent SFDR and IMD Performance
    • SFDR = 76dBc at fOUT = 16MHz (to Nyquist)
    • SFDR = 71dBc at fOUT = 80MHz (to Nyquist)
    • IMD = -90dBc at fOUT = 10MHz
    • IMD = -72dBc at fOUT = 80MHz
  • ACLR = 75dB at fOUT = 61MHz
  • 2mA to 20mA Full-Scale Output Current
  • LVDS-Compatible Digital and Clock Inputs
  • On-Chip +1.20V Bandgap Reference
  • Low 296mW Power Dissipation
  • Compact 68 QFN-EP Package (10mm x 10mm)
  • Evaluation Kit Available (MAX5878EVKIT)


  • Automated Test Equipment (ATE)
  • Base Stations: Single-/Multicarrier UMTS, CDMA, GSM
  • Cable Modem Termination Systems (CMTS)
  • Communications: Fixed Broadband Wireless Access, Point-to-Point Microwave
  • Direct Digital Synthesis (DDS)
  • Instrumentation
Part NumberResolution
@ fOUTSee Notes
MAX5878 16250276 @ 16MHz23294Parallel, LVDS
$20.45 @1k
See All High-Speed DACs (48)
Pricing Notes:
This pricing is BUDGETARY, for comparing similar parts. Prices are in U.S. dollars and subject to change. Quantity pricing may vary substantially and international prices may differ due to local duties, taxes, fees, and exchange rates. For volume-specific and version-specific prices and delivery, please see the price and availability page or contact an authorized distributor.

MAX5876EVKIT: Evaluation Kit for the MAX5876, MAX5877, and MAX5878
MAX5877EVKIT: Evaluation Kit for the MAX5876, MAX5877, and MAX5878
MAX5878EVKIT: Evaluation Kit for the MAX5876, MAX5877, and MAX5878

Technical Documents

Tutorial 4993 Reduce the Chances of Human Error: Part 2, Super Amps and Filters for Analog Interface
App Note 3853 Equalizing Techniques Flatten DAC Frequency Response
App Note 3716 Folded-Frequency Calculator

Quality and Environmental Data

Request Reliability Report for: MAX5878 
Lead-Free Package Tin (Sn) Whisker Reports

Additional Resources

New Product Press Release 2005-08-18

Tools & Models

  • MAX5878 IBIS Model
  • Device   Fab Process   Technology   Sample size   Rejects   FIT at 25°C   FIT at 55°C  

    Note : The failure rates are summarized by technology and mapped to the associated material part numbers. The failure rates are highly dependent on the number of units tested.

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