MAX2820, MAX2820A

2.4GHz 802.11b Zero-IF Transceivers

Please check latest availability status for a specific part variant.


The MAX2820/MAX2820A and MAX2821/MAX2821A single-chip zero-IF transceivers are designed for the 802.11b (11Mbps) applications operating in the 2.4GHz to 2.5GHz ISM band. The transceivers are nearly identical, except the MAX2821 and MAX2821A also provide a low-power shutdown mode and an analog voltage reference output. The MAX2820A/MAX2821A are cost-reduced versions, virtually identical in pinout and performance to the MAX2820/MAX2821. The transceivers include all the circuitry required to implement an 802.11b RF-to-baseband transceiver solution, providing a fully integrated receive path, transmit path, VCO, frequency synthesis, and baseband/control interface. Only a PA, RF switch, RF BPF, and a small number of passive components are needed to form the complete radio front-end solution.

The ICs eliminate the need for external IF and baseband filters by utilizing a direct-conversion radio architecture and monolithic baseband filters for both receiver and transmitter. They are specifically optimized for 802.11b (11Mbps CCK) applications. The baseband filtering and Rx and Tx signal paths support the CCK modulation scheme for BER = 10-5 at the required sensitivity levels.

The devices are suitable for the full range of 802.11b data rates (1Mbps, 2Mbps, 5.5Mbps, and 11Mbps) and also the higher-rate 22Mbps PBCC™ standard. The MAX2820 and MAX2821 are available in a 7mm x 7mm 48-lead QFN package. The MAX2820, MAX2821, MAX2820A, and MAX2821A are available in a 48-lead thin QFN package.
MAX2820, MAX2820A, MAX2821, MAX2821A: Typical Application Circuit MAX2820, MAX2820A, MAX2821, MAX2821A: Typical Application Circuit Enlarge+

Key Features

  • 2.4GHz to 2.5GHz ISM Band Operation
  • 802.11b (11Mbps CCK and 22Mbps PBCC) PHY Compatible
  • Complete RF-to-Baseband Transceiver
    • Direct-Conversion Upconverters and Downconverters
    • Monolithic Low-Phase-Noise VCO
    • Integrated Baseband Lowpass Filters
    • Integrated PLL with 3-Wire Serial Interface
    • Digital Bias Control for External PA
    • Transmit Power Control (Range > 25dB)
    • Receive Baseband AGC (Range > 65dB)
    • Complete Baseband Interface
    • Digital Tx/Rx Mode Control
    • Analog Receive Level Detection
  • -97dBm Rx Sensitivity at 1Mbps
  • -87dBm Rx Sensitivity at 11Mbps
  • +2dBm Transmit Power (11Mbps CCK)
  • Single +2.7V to +3.6V Supply
  • Low-Current Shutdown Mode (MAX2821 only)
  • Very Small 48-Pin QFN Package(s)


  • 2.4GHz ISM-Band Radios
  • 802.11a + b Dual-Band WLAN
  • 802.11b 11Mbps WLAN
  • 802.11b+ 22Mbps PBCC High-Data-Rate WLAN
Product Reliability Reports: MAX2820.pdf 
Request Reliability Report for: MAX2820A 
Device   Fab Process   Technology   Sample size   Rejects   FIT at 25°C   FIT at 55°C   Material Composition  

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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