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Supply of SMD crystal oscillators on the rise

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High power oscillator

Chengdu Xtaltq's BT0507 Series TCXO crystal oscillator in SMD configuration has 0.3ppm initial frequency Tolerance. It measures 5x7x1.8mm.

Makers focus on matching the trend for miniaturization in popular mobile devices smartphones and tablet PCs.

Portable electronics continue to fuel the shift to SMD types in China’s crystal oscillator industry. Suppliers are leveraging technology comparable to that of their Japan counterparts to boost penetration in key application markets smartphones and tablet PCs. SMD units have about 40 percent share of output, while DIP versions remain dominant. In coming years, the configuration will surpass the latter, spurred by spreading adoption in terminal devices.

Manufacturers such as Shenzhen Crystal Technology Industrial Co. Ltd have allocated as much as 60 percent of production for SMD variants. The category accounts for about half of yield at Utech Electronics Technology Co. Ltd, and between 30 and 40 percent at Hebei Far-East Communication System Engineering Co. Ltd.

The current local selection includes 2.5x2mm, 3.2x2.5mm, 5x3.2mm and 7x5mm units, with a few suppliers offering 2x1.6mm models. Makers such as Shenzhen Crystal have releases in 1.6x1.2mm.

In addition to miniaturization, China industry players stress high frequency, stability and precision, and low phase noise. They turn out units with frequency tolerance of ±5 to ±50ppm. VCXO variants support frequency stability over operating temperature of ±25 to ±100ppm, TCXO ±0.1 to ±3ppm and OCXO ±0.06 to ±200ppb.

To achieve enhanced product performance, companies use key equipment such as vacuum silver coating, gluing and fine-tuning machines from Japan, South Korea and the US.

Crystal oscillators are widely employed in the consumer electronics, telecom, networking, research and measurement, industrial, automotive, medical, aerospace and military sectors. The first three applications will account for about 65 percent of the line’s global sales by end-2013.

All these markets, specifically smartphones and tablet PCs, are expected to ensure stable growth for the line in coming years. The deployment of 3G and 3G networks, and the climbing requirement in the automotive and medical fields are also demand drivers.

Domestic suppliers are counting on the category’s rising worldwide market value despite the challenge from emerging silicon MEMS types. They are confident crystal kinds will continue to stay mainstream in the long term. The projection is $2 billion by year-end, hitting $2.7 billion in 2018 and posting a 6 percent CAGR. In shipment volume, the estimates are 1.5 billion and 2.3 billion units in 2013 and 2018, with 8 percent CAGR, according to MarketsandMarkets. Silicon MEMS rivals are predicted to realize a 60percent CAGR and $467 million in 2018, according to Yole Developpement. SiTime currently dominates the market with an 80 percent share. Epson Toyocom has realized mass production of MEMS-based units.

Mainland China currently churns out about 40 percent of global yield of crystal oscillators, a share to increase further as production capacity transfer to China continues.

There are more than 500 manufacturers in the mainland, two-thirds of which have investment from Taiwan, Hong Kong, South Korea and Japan. The latter group includes Epson Toyocom, NDK, KDS, TXC and Vectron. Tangshan Jingyuan Yufeng, Zhejiang East Crystal and Hubei Dongguang Electronics are among their local counterparts.

The key production bases are in the provinces of Guangdong, Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Hebei. The first area gathers 40 percent of the maker pool.

Mainstream crystal oscillators

Lead, DIP and SMD types constitute the selection in China, with the last two forming the mainstream supply.

Based on the general circuit, the range includes SPXO, TCXO, VCXO, FCXO and OCXO versions. As the first has no temperature compensation or control feature, it is mostly used as reference oscillators in communication equipment, measuring instruments and controllers. In computers, office automation equipment and information terminal devices, SPXO units function as clock oscillators.

TCXO kinds work as reference oscillators as well in mobile phones, GPS devices, land mobile radio systems, and microwave and satellite communication systems. They are also adopted in measuring instruments such as frequency counters and synthesizers.

VCXO finds application mainly in PLL-based synchronization and demodulation in transmitters and switchboards. FCXO suits frequency conversion in transmission devices and frequency synchronization. OCXO is utilized as reference oscillator for communication equipment, including mobile base stations, and electronic measuring instruments such as frequency counters and spectrum analyzers.

By output, there are sine wave, clipped sine wave, transistor-transistor logic, CMOS, positive emitter coupled and low-voltage differential signaling oscillators.

Products come in 1.8, 2.5, 2.8, 3.3, 5 and 12V models. These have output frequency ranging from 0.5 to 200MHz.

The key materials include quartz blank, substrate, housing, ceramic and silver. Makers usually source them locally.

Although input costs remain flat, expenditure for labor and the yuan value continue to climb. Suppliers, however, are keeping prices steady in the months ahead to stay competitive.

Related report:
Quartz crystals: Production expansion under way in Hubei

High power oscillator

Product gallery

High power oscillator

Chengdu Xtaltq Technologies Co. Ltd
(mainland China)

Model: BT0507 Series
Description: TCXO; SMD; 10, 12.8, 13, 15.36, 16.32, 18.432, 19.2, 19.44, 20, 20.48, 25,
26, 30.72, 32.768, 38.4 or 40MHz nominal frequency; 0.3ppm initial frequency tolerance; 0.05, 0.1, 0.28,0.5ppm frequency stability at -20 to 70 C; 3.3/5V, 6mA; 5x7x1.8mm

High power oscillator

Chequers Electronic (China) Ltd
(Hong Kong)

Model: 3225 (3.2x2.5mm) Package
Description: SMD; 24MHz; ±10ppm at 25 C, -40 to 85 C; 7pF; ceramic packaging; 3.2x2.5mm; TS 16949

High power oscillator

Hebei Far-East Communication System Engineering Co. Ltd
(mainland China)

Model: OC3SC09-19.2000MHz
Description: 19.2MHz typical frequency; ±150ppb temperature stability at -20 to 70 C AT-cut, ±20ppb SC-cut; HCOMS, LVCOMS, TTL output waveform; 500ppb yearly aging AT-cut, 200ppb SC-cut; 3.3 or 5V; 14.6x9.7x7.5mm

High power oscillator

Shenzhen Crystal Technology Industrial Co. Ltd
(mainland China)

Model: 2520 SMD OSC
Description: SMD; 4 to 54MHz frequency; low noise, current, power consumption; built-in CMOS IC with tristate function; 1.8, 2.5 or 3.3V; 2.5x2mm; RoHS

High power oscillator

Utech Electronics Technology Co. Ltd
(mainland China)

Model: SMD3225
Description: SMD; 1.544 to 125MHz frequency; 10ppm frequency stability; 3.3 or 5V; RoHS

Note: All price quotes in this report are in US dollars unless otherwise specified. FOB prices were provided by the companies interviewed only as reference prices at the time of interview and may have changed.

Disclaimer: All product images are provided by the companies interviewed and are for reference purposes only. Those product images featuring products with trademarks, brand names or logos are not intended for sale. We, our affiliates, and our affiliates' respective directors, officers, employees, representatives, agents or contractors, do not accept and will not have any responsibility or liability for product images (or any part thereof) which infringe on any intellectual property or other rights of a third party.

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