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Distortion in capacitors
Distortion in capacitors
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Old 11th February 2019, 08:43 PM   #1
nauta is offline nauta  Canada
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Default Distortion in capacitors

Hi

Most hobbyists and techs know about the great article written by Richard Marsh and Walt Jung from back in the 1980s or so, and the update made by Cyril Batement a decade ago, but has anyone tested all the new caps?

We know polypropylene is essentially zero THD, and so is polystyrene. PP is easy to get but PS seems to be rare and only in tiny values.

Polyester aka mylar adds odd-order THD.

Polycarbonate seems to have nearly disappeared and is maybe in between polyester and polypropylene.

Mica is okay.

Ceramic can be okay below quite low pFs and only if N0P or C0G.

What about polyethylene-napthlate or -terapthlate?
polymer caps?
polyphenylene sulfide / sulphide?
silicon dioxide / nitride?
aluminium organic polymer? (probably as bad as standard electrolytics?)

It seems there are a lot more dielectrics to choose from - or not to choose from
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Old 12th February 2019, 12:19 AM   #2
alexberg is offline alexberg
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There is/was a paper by NSC Bob Pease discussing absorption and other particularities in different dielectrics.
Basically Teflon, PP and NP0 ceramic are the good ones. It all depends on voltage across the capacitors.
In simpler terms you may check dielectric properties.
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Old 12th February 2019, 12:22 AM   #3
alexberg is offline alexberg
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Bob Pease on Audio Capacitors
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Old 12th February 2019, 12:23 AM   #4
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Passives Aren’t Really So Passive (Part 1): Capacitors - Application Note - Maxim
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Old 12th February 2019, 12:24 AM   #5
alexberg is offline alexberg
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https://www.eetimes.com/document.asp?doc_id=1278898.
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Old 12th February 2019, 12:42 AM   #6
jackinnj is offline jackinnj  United States
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Distortion in capacitors
Linear Audio, I think it was Volume 12, had a great article using a quadrature rig to measure THD%. Even more precise than Cyril's articles of decades ago.
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Old 13th February 2019, 03:36 AM   #7
nauta is offline nauta  Canada
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I was actually hoping for new THD tests of these other dielectrics. I guess there are none?
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Old 13th February 2019, 05:30 AM   #8
MarcelvdG is offline MarcelvdG  Netherlands
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nauta View Post
Polyester aka mylar adds odd-order THD.

(...)

What about polyethylene-napthlate or -terapthlate?
Polyethyleneterephtalate = polyester

Quote:
Originally Posted by nauta View Post
polyphenylene sulfide / sulphide?
Covered in Cyril Bateman's original series: better than polyester, but not quite as good as polystyrene.

Silicon dioxide and silicon nitride are used for the highest performance capacitors on integrated circuits, so maybe you can find something about them in the Journal of Solid-State Circuits. By the way, the dielectric of a Leyden jar also consists mainly of silicon dioxide.

Last edited by MarcelvdG; 13th February 2019 at 05:40 AM.
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Old 13th February 2019, 05:53 AM   #9
jazbo8 is offline jazbo8
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Distortion in capacitors
Thread moved to Parts.
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Old 14th February 2019, 01:07 AM   #10
nauta is offline nauta  Canada
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Hi Marcelvdg: That is good info, thanks!

Hi jazbo8: I didn't see a component forum so put it in SS since that is where cap distortion will reveal itself best - or worst?
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