simulate this circuit – Schematic created using CircuitLab

I'm routing an aquisition system based on 3 high speed ADCs.

To trigger the conversion at the same time I planned use a clock buffer to split the master clock triggering to the 3 ADCs, so the Ds says routing clock lines with 50 ohm matched impedance. Ok well, my manufacturer (Eurocircuits) gives me track width acording prepeg height,Er and dissipation factor, also Altium gives me a similar width (0.2 mm TOP/BOT = 51 Ohms).

I used Altium SI to simulate these tracks.

With 51R series resistor termination:

51R series resistor term

Without series resistor: Without series resistor

With series term, looks very good in terms of overshooting/overvoltage. The clock buffer is LMK00105, the datasheet indicates: Rs = Zo - Ro, but I'm confused because transmission line Zo = 50R and output impedance Ro=50R gives me 0R, so why does the signal "look better" when I put in the 51R resistor?

all signals

  • \$\begingroup\$ how closely matched must the timing be? At 1,000 picoseconds/foot in vacuum, can you afford 1pS or 10pS sampling errors? differences in ESD structures, between difference datecodes, may matter. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 21, 2019 at 11:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm not quite clear where these waves are taken from and what the schematic is you are talking about. Could you perhaps add a simple schematic to clarify? \$\endgroup\$
    – Joren Vaes
    Oct 21, 2019 at 11:23
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ How exactly are you modeling the LMK00105 output? Are you using the IBIS model that TI supplies? \$\endgroup\$
    – Dave Tweed
    Oct 21, 2019 at 12:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hi Dave, i'm using IBIS model in both parts (typ conditions). Added more info, the part U12 it's the LMK and Q3 it's one of the ADC's. \$\endgroup\$
    – A.martinez
    Oct 21, 2019 at 14:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ Where do you measure? Pre- or post 50E resistor? \$\endgroup\$ Oct 22, 2019 at 16:52

1 Answer 1


You are confusing the output impedance requirements of the LMK00105 output with the input impedance requirements of the ADCs.

Let's start from the beginning: The LMK00105 has an output impedance Ro=50 Ohms. In order to match this to the TX line of 50 ohms, no series resistor needs to be used. (For the case of matching the output to a 75 ohms TX line, you would need Rs=Z0-Ro=25 Ohms series resistors).

At the end of the TX-line, there is an additional input impedance requirement of the ADCs to be satisfied. For no reflection to happen, the input impedance (Zi) of the ADCs must be matched to 50 ohms. Let's consider the case that this input impedance Zi is 0 Ohms. Then you have a signal short at the end of the TX-line, that will lead to a signal edge overshoot like shown in your pictures. If you add a serial resistor Rs=50 Ohms at the end of the TX-line, this removes the overshoots and matches the ADCs to the TX line. This could explain what you are simulating.

So in short: You need to match the input and the output of your TX-line in order to get rid of signal reflections and overshoot.

Edit1: If Zi is 30k, you can place a 50 Ohms resistor in parallel with Zi. This would terminate the TX line with 50 Ohms total. But Zi is not only 30kOhms. There is a capacitive component of 3.5pF (see datasheet). Matching this Zi is not easy, because you would need a matching for all frequencies that are contained in the unit step voltage.

  • \$\begingroup\$ @stefanWays Hi, thanks for your answer. The ADC its LTC2170-14 de Analog, so Zi it's 30k, how I proceed? Thanks! \$\endgroup\$
    – A.martinez
    Oct 25, 2019 at 14:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ I edited my answer for Zi=30k \$\endgroup\$ Oct 25, 2019 at 17:00

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