Output Impedance

The output impedance, source impedance, or internal impedance of an electronic device is the opposition exhibited by its output terminals to an alternating current (AC) of a particular frequency as a result of resistance, inductance and capacitance. It is the Thévenin equivalent impedance looking back into the output terminals.

In the case of a nonlinear device, such as a transistor, the term "output impedance" usually refers to the effect upon a small-amplitude signal, and will vary with the bias point of the transistor, that is, with the direct current (DC) and voltage applied to the device.

The small-signal impedance at DC (frequency of 0) is the same as the resistive component of the impedance and is termed output resistance.

No real device (battery, generator, amplifier) is a perfect source; each has an internal impedance, though this may have little practical effect, depending on the circuit and the load.

Depending on perspective, this impedance can be modeled as being in series with an ideal voltage source, or in parallel with an ideal current source (see: Thevenin's theorem, Norton's theorem, Series and parallel circuits). Both models are equivalent, and one may choose whichever model is most convenient for analysis.

For example, having a preamplifier with a 100-ohm output impedance means the output voltage signal appears to be in series with a 100-ohm resistor.

Read more about Output Impedance:  Measurement, Audio Amplifiers, Batteries

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... resistor values is    in ohms, and      is the output resistance due to the Early effect when VCB = 0 V (device parameter VA is the Early voltage). 6 shows that a value of output resistance much larger than rO of the output transistor results only for designs with IC1 >> IC2 ... Figure 3 shows that the circuit output resistance RO is not determined so much by feedback as by the current dependence of the resistance rO of the output ...

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