Bode Plots Overview

Bode plots are a very useful way to represent the gain and phase of a system as a function of frequency.  This is referred to as the frequency domain behavior of a system.  This web page attempts to demystify the process. The various parts are more-or-less stand alone, so if you want to skip one or more, that should not be a problem.  If you are only interested in a quick lesson on how to make Bode diagrams, go to part 4, "Making Plots."  A MatLab program to make piecewise linear Bode plots is described in part 6.

The documents are:

  1. What is the frequency domain response?  In other words, "What does a Bode Plot represent?"
  2. Why is the Bode representation used?  There are many ways to represent frequency response.  Why are magnitude and phase plots used?  This includes some animations.
  3. How are the piecewise linear asymptotic approximations derived?
  4. Rules for making Bode plots.  This is a quick "How to" lesson for drawing Bode plots.
  5. Some examples (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) - (combined into one file).
  6. BodePlotGui:  A software tool for generating asymptotic Bode plots.
  7. A MatLab program for making semi-logarithmic paper for drawing your own Bode plots.
  8. A table summarizing Bode rules
  9. The MATLAB files discussed in these documents.

    Also available is a compilation of items 1 through 8, for easy printing.


© Copyright 2005-2013 Erik Cheever    This page may be freely used for educational purposes.

Erik Cheever       Department of Engineering         Swarthmore College