Transmitter Functions: All You Need To Know

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Also known as a Radio Transmitter, a transmitter is an electronic device that, with the help of antenna, produces radio waves for the transmission of data. The device itself creates a radio frequency alternating current. This alternating current creates an excitement in the antenna that radiates radio waves.

How does a transmitter work?

Before you understand how a transmitter works, you should know what it does. The primary function of a transmitter is to allow the communication of information over a certain distance.

The transmitter receives information in the form of an electronic signal. The form of the signal depends on the device it is generated from. For example, a microphone creates audio, a video camera produces video, while a wireless networking device generates digital signals.

Upon receiving the electronic signal, the transmitter combines it with the radio frequency signal, which generates the radio waves. This process of combination is called modulation, and its byproduct is known as the modulation signal.

After modulation, the transmitter sends out the carrier signals to the antenna. The antenna then radiates these signals into the atmosphere like radio waves.

How many types of transmitters are there?

There are three types of transmitters that are most commonly used for radio transmission:

Amplitude Modulation or AM Transmitters

AM Transmitters conduct modulation by changing the amplitude or strength of carrier waves, while the frequency remains the same. These transmitters are used in electronic communication.

Frequency Modulation or PM Transmitters

PM Transmitters conduct modulation by adding slight variations in the frequency of the carrier waves. These transmitters are used in signal processing, telecommunications, etc.

Frequency-Shift Keying or FSK Transmitters

In the FSK Transmitters, the carrier signal is shifted between two frequencies, which are denoted by the binaries 0 and 1. These transmitters are used for transmitting digital data.

What are the components of a transmitter?

A transmitter consists of five different components that work together to generate radio waves for the transmission of data.

Power Supply

The power supply is the source of energy that produces electrical power required by the transmitter to operate and broadcast.


The oscillator is responsible for creating alternating current and setting the frequency at which the transmitter transmits carrier signals. The currents generated in the oscillator is a since wave known as the carrier wave.


Once the oscillator generates carrier waves, the job of the modulator is to add information in these waves by variation.


The amplifier increases the strength of the modulated carrier to produce a more powerful broadcast. It includes strengthening the signal and improving the range of the radio waves.

Antenna tuner

The antenna tuner is responsible for the efficient transfer of power to the antenna. It matches the impedance of the transmitter to that of the antenna for successful transmission.

Summing Up

The transmitter is an indispensable equipment of radio broadcasting. If you are a fan of radio, buying a transmitter will transform your radio experience forever. For home or car audio systems, we recommend you to buy an FM transmitter.