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Unlock the Power of 32.768kHz: Choosing Crystals in Electronic Design

Posted: 13th November 2023

Unlock the Power of 32.768kHz: Choosing Crystals in Electronic Design 

Electronic devices, from wristwatches to microcontrollers and even communication networks, rely on the heartbeat of a crystal. And 32.768kHz is the frequency that stands out as a cornerstone in the field of electronics.

Why 32.768kHz Matters

At the heart of many electronic devices, there is a 32.768kHz crystal. This specific frequency is not arbitrary but rather a carefully chosen standard due to its incredible significance in timekeeping and synchronization. Here's why it's so important:

  1. Divisibility: 32.768kHz is a power of 2, which makes it highly divisible. This makes it ideal for generating time intervals in the form of seconds, minutes, and hours with precision. In essence, it forms the basis for real-time clocks.
  2. Low Power Consumption: Crystals operating at 32.768kHz typically require very low power, making them perfect for battery-operated devices. This is why you find them in countless consumer electronics like digital watches and wearable tech.
  3. Low Cost: Crystals remain a popular choice in designs owing to their long-standing affordability and…
    Availability: When design engineers face strict deadlines, a reliance on components that are either challenging to source or limited to a single trusted provider can impede manufacturing processes, leading to delays and frustration. The wide availability of 32.768 kHz crystals makes them an easy choice when they are reliably available.
  4. No wonder, engineers and manufacturers place their confidence in 32.768 kHz crystals. With a diverse range of package options and specifications, 32.768 kHz crystals are poised to play an enduring substantial role in new designs.
    To find out more about choosing the Right Crystal for Your Electronic Design – see our previous article: 6 Key Parameters of Crystal Specification

In summary, the 32.768kHz frequency and the selection of the right crystal are vital components of electronic design. Whether it's ensuring your smartwatch keeps time accurately or synchronizing network devices, the choice of quartz crystal or oscillator plays a pivotal role in the performance and functionality of your electronic devices. Careful consideration of frequency, stability, operating temperature range, and power requirements will lead to a well-rounded, reliable design that meets the specific needs of your application.

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