Analog Signal vs. Digital Signal

Analog Signals and Digital Signals are used to Transmit data, usually through electrical signals. In these two technologies, the data, such as an audio or video, is changed into electrical signals. The difference between the digital signal and the analog signal is that in analog signals, data is translated into electrical pulses of varying amplitude. In digital signals, translation of data is right into binary format (one or zero ) where each piece is representative of two different amplitudes.

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analog signal vs digital signal

Analog and Digital are different forms of signals. Signals are used to transmit information from one device to another. Analog signal is a continuous wave which keeps on shifting over a period of time. Digital signal is different in nature. The fundamental difference between digital and analog signal is that the analog signals are represented by the sine waves whereas, the digital signals are represented by square waves. Lets us learn some more differences between the digital and analog signal with the support of the comparison graph shown below.

Comparison Chart

BASIS Analog Signal Digital Signals
Basis Analog signals are the continuous wave that changes over a time frame. Digital signals are a discrete wave which carries data in binary form.
Representation Analog signals are represented by a sine wave. Digital signals are represented by square waves.
Description Analog signals are described by the amplitude, frequency or period, and phase. Digital signals are described by bit-rate and bit intervals.
Range Analog signals have no fixed selection. Digital signals have a finite range i.e. between 1 and 0.
Distortion An analog signal is more vulnerable to distortion. A digital signal is not as prone to distortion.
Transmit An analog signal transmit information in the shape of a wave. Digital signal carries data in the binary format i.e. 0 and 1.
Instance The human voice is an example of an analog signal. Digital Signal is used for transmission in a computer would be the electronic signal.
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What is an Analog Signal?

Analog signal is a sort of constant waveform that changes over time. An analog signal is categorized into simple and composite signals. Simple Analog Signals is a sine wave that can’t be decomposed further. While a composite analog signal can be further decomposed into multiple sine waves. An analog signal is described with amplitude, frequency or period and phase. Amplitude marks the highest height of the sign. Frequency marks the speed at which the signal is changing. Stage marks the position of the wave with respect to time.

An analog signal isn’t immune to noise. Consequently, it faces distortion and lessens the quality of transmission. The assortment of value in an analog signal isn’t fixed.

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Analog Signal

What is Digital Signal?

Digital signal also carries information like analog signals but are somewhat differs from analog signals. Digital signal is non-continuous, discrete-time signal. Digital signal carries data or information in the binary form i.e. a digital signal representing information in the form of bits. Digital signals can be further decomposed into simple sine waves which are called harmonics. Each easy wave has distinct amplitude, frequency and phase. Digital signal is explained with bit rate and bit period. Bit interval describes the time demand for sending a single bit. On the other hand, the bit rate refers to the frequency of little interval.

A digital signal is much more resistant to the sound; hence, it barely faces any distortion. Digital signals are easier to transmit and therefore are more reliable when compared to analog signals. Digital signal has a finite array of values. The assortment of a digital signal lies between 0 to 1.

Digital Signal

Key Differences

  1. An analog signal represents a constant wave which keeps changing over a period of time. While a digital signal represents a noncontinuous wave which conveys data in a binary format also contains discrete values.
  2. Analog signals are represented by the constant sine wave whereas, an electronic signal is represented by square waves.
  3. While speaking of the analog signal, we describe the behavior of the tide in regards to amplitude, frequency or period, and period of the tide. On the other hand, while speaking of distinct signals, we describe the behavior of the tide with regard to the bit rate and bit period.
  4. The assortment of an analog signal isn’t fixed whereas the assortment of the digital signal is restricted and ranges between 0 to 1.
  5. An analog signal is much more vulnerable to distortion in response to sound, but an electronic signal has immunity in response to sound hence it faces any distortion.
  6. An analog signal transmits data in the kind of wave whereas, an electronic signal transmits the information in the binary form i.e. in the kind of bits.
  7. The example of analog signals is that a human voice and the example of the digital signal is the transmission of information in a computer.
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Properties of Digital vs Analog signal

Synchronization: digital communication utilizes specific synchronization sequences for determining synchronization.

 Language: digital communications require a language that ought to be owned by both sender and recipient and should specify the significance of symbol sequences.

 Errors: disturbances in analog communication cause mistakes in real intended communication but disturbances in electronic communication don’t lead to errors enabling error-free communication. Errors need to be able to substitute, insert or delete symbols to be expressed.

 Copying: analog communicating copies are quality-wise not like their originals while because of error-free electronic communication, copies can be made indefinitely.

Granularity: to get a continuously variable analog value to be represented in electronic form there happen quantization error that’s the difference in real analog value and electronic representation and this land of electronic communication are referred to as granularity.

Differences in Utilization in Gear

Many devices come with integrated translation centers from analog to digital. Microphones and speaker are ideal examples of analog devices. Analog technology is cheaper as compared to digital, but there’s a limit of the size of data that can be transmitted at a certain time.

Digital signals have revolutionized how the majority of the equipment operator. Data is converted into the binary mode and then reassembled back into an original format the reception stage. Since these can be readily manipulated, it gives a wider selection of options. Digital equipment is more expensive as compared to analog equipment.

Comparison of Analog vs. Digital Quality

Digital devices interpret and reassemble data and in the process are more vulnerable to loss of quality in comparison with analog devices. Computer advancement has enabled the use of error detection and error correction methods to eliminate disturbances artificially from electronic signals and enhance quality.

Differences in Applications

Digital technology has been most efficient in the mobile phone market. Analog telephones have become redundant although sound quality and clarity was good.

Analog technology comprises of pure signs like human speech. With digital technologies, this individual language can be saved and stored in a computer. Thus digital technologies open up the horizon for unlimited potential applications.


Digital signal is replacing the analog signal, but the analog signal remains best for sound transmission.

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