Dual Bi-Directional I2C-Bus and SMBus Voltage Level-Translator - PCA9306


Dual Bi-Directional I2C-Bus and SMBus Voltage Level-Translator


This dual bidirectional I2C and SMBus voltage-level translator, with an enable (EN) input, is operational from 1.2-V to 3.3-V VREF1 and 1.8-V to 5.5-V VREF2.

The PCA9306 allows bidirectional voltage translations between 1.2 V and 5 V, without the use of a direction pin. The low ON-state resistance (ron) of the switch allows connections to be made with minimal propagation delay. When EN is high, the translator switch is ON, and the SCL1 and SDA1 I/O are connected to the SCL2 and SDA2 I/O, respectively, allowing bidirectional data flow between ports. When EN is low, the translator switch is off, and a high-impedance state exists between ports.

In I2C applications, the bus capacitance limit of 400 pF restricts the number of devices and bus length. Using the PCA9306 enables the system designer to isolate two halves of a bus; thus, more I2C devices or longer trace length can be accommodated.

The PCA9306 also can be used to run two buses, one at 400-kHz operating frequency and the other at 100-kHz operating frequency. If the two buses are operating at different frequencies, the 100-kHz bus must be isolated when the 400-kHz operation of the other bus is required. If the master is running at 400 kHz, the maximum system operating frequency may be less than 400 kHz because of the delays added by the repeater.

As with the standard I2C system, pullup resistors are required to provide the logic high levels on the translator's bus. The PCA9306 has a standard open-collector configuration of the I2C bus. The size of these pullup resistors depends on the system, but each side of the repeater must have a pullup resistor. The device is designed to work with standard-mode and fast-mode I2C devices, in addition to SMBus devices. Standard-mode I2C devices only specify 3 mA in a generic I2C system where standard-mode devices and multiple masters are possible. Under certain conditions, high termination currents can be used.

When the SDA1 or SDA2 port is low, the clamp is in the ON state, and a low resistance connection exists between the SDA1 and SDA2 ports. Assuming the higher voltage is on the SDA2 port when the SDA2 port is high, the voltage on the SDA1 port is limited to the voltage set by VREF1. When the SDA1 port is high, the SDA2 port is pulled to the drain pullup supply voltage (VDPU) by the pullup resistors. This functionality allows a seamless translation between higher and lower voltages selected by the user, without the need for directional control. The SCL1/SCL2 channel also functions as the SDA1/SDA2 channel.

All channels have the same electrical characteristics, and there is minimal deviation from one output to another in voltage or propagation delay. This is a benefit over discrete transistor voltage translation solutions, since the fabrication of the switch is symmetrical. The translator provides excellent ESD protection to lower-voltage devices and at the same time protects less ESD-resistant devices.t


  • 2-Bit Bidirectional Translator for SDA and SCL Lines
    in Mixed-Mode I2C Applications
  • I2C and SMBus Compatible
  • Less Than 1.5-ns Maximum Propagation Delay to Accommodate
    Standard-Mode and Fast-Mode I2C Devices and Multiple Masters
  • Allows Voltage-Level Translator Between
    • 1.2-V VREF1 and 1.8-V, 2.5-V, 3.3-V,
      or 5-V VREF2
    • 1.8-V VREF1 and 2.5-V, 3.3-V, or 5-V VREF2
    • 2.5-V VREF1 and 3.3-V or 5-V VREF2
    • 3.3-V VREF1 and 5-V VREF2
  • Provides Bidirectional Voltage Translation With No Direction Pin
  • Low 3.5- ON-State Connection Between Input and Output Ports
    Provides Less Signal Distortion
  • Open-Drain I2C I/O Ports (SCL1, SDA1, SCL2, and SDA2)
  • 5-V Tolerant I2C I/O Ports to Support Mixed-Mode Signal Operation
  • High-Impedance SCL1, SDA1, SCL2, and SDA2 Pins for EN = Low
  • Lock-Up-Free Operation for Isolation When EN = Low
  • Flow-Through Pinout for Ease of Printed Circuit Board Trace Routing
  • Latch-Up Performance Exceeds 100 mA Per JESD 78, Class II
  • ESD Protection Exceeds JESD 22
    • 2000-V Human-Body Model (A114-A)
    • 200-V Machine Model (A115-A)
    • 1000-V Charged-Device Model (C101)

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Parametrics Compare all products in I2C Special Function

No. of Outputs
Operating Temperature Range (C)
Max Frequency (kHz)
I2C Address
Approx. Price (US$)
Special Features
PCA9306 TCA9406
2     2    
-40 to 85     -40 to 85    
Catalog     Catalog    
400     1000    
Voltage Translator     I2C Voltage Level Translator    
N/A     N/A    
0.26 | 1ku     0.38 | 1ku    
Enable Pin
Open-Drain I/O Type
5V Tolerant I/O    
Enable Pin
Open-Drain I/O Type
5V Tolerant I/O
Push-Pull I/O Type    

Other qualified versions of PCA9306

Version Part Number Definition
Automotive PCA9306-Q1 Q100 devices qualified for high-reliability automotive applications targeting zero defects

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