A fundamental audio signal processing requirement is the control of gain; recent trends have been demonstrated toward control by electronic means. An inexpensive and viable means of gain control is the monolithic two-quadrant multiplier, which can be configured for wide dynamic ranges (>80 dB) of signal handling and control, is capable of low-distortion operation, fast response, and is flexible in its use. This paper deals with both the classic form of transconductance multiplier and a more recent innovation, the operational transconductance amplifier which can be used as a multiplier and/or an amplifer. Considerations for optimized use in various audio signal processing functions is discussed, and representative circuitry is given.
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