When using the THS3201 in wideband, non-inverting configuration, is there any issue with using ceramic decoupling caps instead of tantalum? The example schematic in the datasheet shows tantalum caps and I want to verify that we won't run into issues if ceramic caps were used instead.
This should be ok. In the past Tantalum capacitors were chosen because they are cheap and they are rated for higher voltage and capacitance values. But capacitor technology has come a long way. As a general rule of thumb it's better to use ceramics vs tantalum if possible. The main reason being that ceramic capacitors typically have lower ESR.
UltraCAD wrote a good article diving into power supply decoupling and why ESR is important: http://www.ultracad.com/articles/esrbcap.pdf
Another reason is that ceramics can be soldered at higher temperature. The plastic casing of tantalums limits the max available temp and with a push towards lead free solder, this could be a concern. There are also inherent differences in the way both capacitors are constructed which favor the ceramic architechure.
There is a lot of material on the web that discusses the differences. Kemet wrote a good article (slightly skewed towards tantalum) highlighting the advantages and disadvantages: http://www.kemet.com/kemet/web/homepage/kfbk3.nsf/vaFeedbackFAQ/0F05C4C1F74A2D2485256F170052CD15/$file/2008-11%20Update%20-%20Ceramic%20versus%20Tantalum.pdf
Hope this helps!
Let us know if you have any other questions.
Regards,Luke LapointeHigh Speed Amplifiers
In reply to Luke LaPointe:
All content and materials on this site are provided "as is". TI and its respective suppliers and providers of content make no representations about the suitability of these materials for any purpose and disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to these materials, including but not limited to all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement of any third party intellectual property right. TI and its respective suppliers and providers of content make no representations about the suitability of these materials for any purpose and disclaim all warranties and conditions with respect to these materials. No license, either express or implied, by estoppel or otherwise, is granted by TI. Use of the information on this site may require a license from a third party, or a license from TI.
TI is a global semiconductor design and manufacturing company. Innovate with 100,000+ analog ICs andembedded processors, along with software, tools and the industry’s largest sales/support staff.