This paper discusses recent trends in the area of low-power, high-performance A/D conversion. We examine survey data collected over the past twelve years to show that the conversion energy of ADCs has halved every two years, while the speed-resolution product has doubled approximately only every four years. A closer inspection on the impact of technology scaling, and developments in ADC design are then presented to explain the observed trends. Finally, we review opportunities in digitally assisted design for the most popular converter architectures.
2010 The Institute of Electronics, Information and Communication Engineers