This circuit performs the function of dividing the input signal by a selected constant (1, 2, 4, 8, etc.). While T, Z, or L sections could be used in the input attenuator, this is not necessary since the amplifier loading is negligible and a constant input impedance is maintained. The circuit is thus much simpler and more accurate than the usual method of constructing a constant impedance ladder, and switching sections in and out with analog switches.
Programmable-attenuator - schematic

Two identical circuits can be used to attenuate a balanced line.

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