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The natural coupling between parallel transmission lines is inherently directional. Very simple and cheap directional couplers can be made which utilize this effect. By introducing appropriate variation of coupling with distance a wide variety of transmission characteristics may be realized, including high-pass (ideally, infinite bandwidth) characteristics. The coupled lines may be of equal or different impedance. Thus, a simple configuration of four wires (or two wires and ground) can serve simultaneously as a directional coupler, filter, and transformer.