Function Generator with ICL8038

Published by MKDas on

In this article, we will learn to make a function generator using ICL8038 IC. A function generator is a very useful device for anyone who works with electronics. Sine wave, Triangular wave, Square wave are the basic wave shapes we all need in electronics work.

Disclaimer: Electricity is always dangerous. Skill required to work with electricity. Do work at your own risk. The author will not be responsible for any misuse or harmful act. This website contents are also copyright protected. Anything copied and directly posted on your website and claiming it as yours is prohibited and nonsensical. The author published all the articles as open source to help you to make your project and learning purpose only. Learn and make one for yourself. If need any help feel free to ask the author. The author will be helpful to you. Thanks.

What is function generator:

A function generator is usually a piece of electronic test equipment or software used to generate different types of electrical waveforms over a wide range of frequencies. Some of the most common waveforms produced by the function generator are the sine wave, square wave, triangular wave, and sawtooth shapes. These waveforms can be either repetitive or single-shot (which requires an internal or external trigger source). Integrated circuits used to generate waveforms may also be described as function generator ICs.

A Function generator

About ICL8038:

ICL8038 is a waveform generator. Here is the functional block diagram of this IC.

Functional diagram of ICL8038

Other similar IC:

Yes, there are similar ICs that can be used as a function generator. You can use XR2206 IC too to generate the different waveforms.

Circuit diagram:

Here we’ll see the circuit diagram that you can make for your homemade function generator with IC ICL8038. This circuit is not frequency tune-able. But if you want to tune the frequency you can do that too.

Fixed frequency diagram:

Circuit diagram for ICL8038 function generator

Here you need to use a dual power supply. I used +12V & -12V in simulation. It worked fine. You can download the proteus file from here.

Variable frequency diagram:

For variable frequency, you need to change the diagram a little bit like this one:

And if you want to keep both, you can do that too by using multiple variable resistors.


While simulating, I got a good result from this IC. I can change the swift tuning RV1. For frequency tune, you need to do a little modification of this circuit diagram.

Function generator with ICL8038


I’ve made the PCB for this too. You can check this if you wish you can make one too. As I use Sprint Layout 6.0 for most of the project, so I’ll share the design file with you.

PCB of ICL8038 Function Generator

Hope you enjoyed the project and it helped you make your own function generator/waveform generator whatever you call it. If you need any help feel free to contact me. Thank you.


I'm Mithun K. Das; B.Sc. in EEE from KUET, Bangladesh. Blog: "First, electronics was my passion, then it was my education, and finally, electronics is now my profession." I run my own electronics lab, M's Lab ( Where I work with the creation of new products from ideas to something in real life. Besides this is my personal blog where I write for hobbyists and newcomers in the electronics arena. I also have a YouTube channel where I publish other helpful videos, you can find the link inside the articles. I always try to keep it simple so that it becomes easy to understand. I hope these will help them to learn electronics and apply the knowledge in their real life.


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