Attenuators are passive electrical components that reduce the strength of an RF signal while retaining the signal’s integrity. RF attenuators diminish the amplitude of signals achieving gain levels below 1 dB, known as loss. These RF signal reducers are incorporated into an electrical system to compensate for components generating over-powered emissions. They lower voltage, dissipate power and improve impedance matching in the electronic circuitry. There are three basic types of attenuators: fixed, switched and variable. Fixed RF attenuators operate at a set emission reduction value. Switched attenuators, or step attenuators, offer flexibility in the test by incorporating switches which allow the operator to adjust the degree to which the attenuator will reduce a signal. Variable RF attenuators constantly varies the power of a signal, ideal for applications not requiring accuracy.