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How To Select An Inductor?

When it comes to selecting the ideal inductor, people often presume that every inductor is more or less similar. However, that is not always the case because different variants of inductors are available in the market, including surface mount inductors, ferrite core inductors, and more surface mount indicator.

In addition, each of these inductors is specifically designed to serve different purposes; hence considering that every inductor is similar is a blunder made by many. There are many things that one needs to consider when selecting an ideal inductor that would fit the requirements of the users. Therefore, let’s take a look at some of these common parameters

Self Resonant Frequency (SRF):

This is a frequency at which the inductor stops functioning like an inductor. In the case of resonant frequency circuits, one must opt for a self-resonant frequency that does not exceed the circuit’s operating frequency within the inductors. The inductance of your inductor will always remain at zero when in the self-resonant frequency, which in turn means the Q factor of the inductor is also at zero.           

Q Factor:

The next imperative parameter to consider here is the Q factor, also known as the Quality factor. This is a ratio that indicates the reactance of the inductor to the effective resistance. The said value of the frequency-dependent and test frequency is generally specified in the datasheets. Further, the Q factor of an inductor can have impacted the sharpness of the center frequency in the LC circuit. In general, it is always preferable to have a higher value of the Q factor in most scenarios. 

Saturation Current:

This is the DC that causes the induction of the inductor to drop by a pre-specified value. The drop of inductance is that the core has the potential to store only a certain amount of flux in the magnetic density. Furthermore, the saturation current is generally related to the inductor’s magnetic properties, but the rated current is related to the physical properties of the inductor.


This often results in an unwanted and unintended shift in the frequency selection of any RF filter. Tolerance is an imperative factor to consider even when one might be looking for a surface mount indicator.  

DC Resistance (DCR):

The DC resistance or DCR is inherent resistance in an inductor’s metal conductor that can also be molded to be used as a resistor in series with the inductor. This is a very important parameter in DC-DC converters design as the tool of resistance can result in the loss of I²R, which further contributes to reducing the efficiency of the inductor.

Bottom Line

These are some of the most important parameters that one needs to consider when attempting to choose an ideal inductor that would fit all their requirements and specifications. Therefore, make sure to consider these parameters no matter the type of inductor you are looking to use. Also, check out these surface mount inductors and see if they fit your requirements. 

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