Latest circuit analysis software

Discussion in 'Electronics Resources' started by evo21, Nov 17, 2007.

  1. evo21

    Thread Starter New Member

    Nov 17, 2007
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    Hey, im new around here, and the site is great!

    well i installed pspice 9.1 on my laptop, but it looks like a win98 program or something =/.
    Is this the latest in circuit analysis software? i want one that fits more nicely on windows vista or at least with a xp alike interface.

    btw i heard something about orcad 16, when will it be released?
     
  2. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
    6,960
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    Welcome to All About Circuits, we're glad you like the site.

    I'm surprised PSPICE 9.1 runs on Vista. That said, it is unlikely that 9.1 will follow the Vista UI rules and hence will be the reason it looks dated - don't worry even new applications release after Vista do this, e.g. Matlab R2007a looks like something from the 1980s!! Sadly, you will need to grin and bare it.

    If it bothers you so much, then either dual-boot Vista with XP or download MS Virtual PC install Windows XP on it and run PSPICE 9.1 from inside of there - it follows the XP UI design set.

    There is no news (AFAIK) on newer versions of Orcad's apps.

    Dave
     
  3. AKADriver

    New Member

    Nov 18, 2007
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    PSPICE 9.1 seems to be working flawlessly on my PC with Vista Business. Vista does a reasonably good job for me with letting older software run as XP or NT if needed.
     
  4. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
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    I too have not had any problems other than Matlab (fixed with an upgrade to R2007a). I think the OP was gesturing towards to the look fitting in with Vista - many older applications have not been designed with Aero in mind and hence Vista reverts back to the Vista Basic UI, or just have Windows 95 buttons and icons. I'm sure this will change in time as it did when XP was released.

    Dave
     
  5. thingmaker3

    Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
    5,072
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    I'm not a software guru, so please bear with my ignorance:

    Is it true that the appearance of software is vastly more important than utility of same software? Doesn't need to work, just needs to look good?:confused:
     
  6. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
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    Ask the users of Apple Macintoshes ;)

    Look at the major consumer OSes today: Vista, OSX and Ubuntu (Linux) all three trade on their aesthetics. Have you never heard the marketing claim how Aero, Aqua or Compiz will improve your workflow?

    Personally, I spend a lot of time at the terminal so the retro writing on a black background is a staple of my work!

    Dave
     
  7. nrclark

    New Member

    May 25, 2007
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    Last I heard, Orcad Layout was being discontinued and Capture was being merged into the PCB Editor line of products. As for what you call a 'modern' circuit simulator - I wouldn't get your hopes up. Any self-respecting electrical engineer should be more concerned with the functionality of his software than with making sure the title bar has a color gradient in it.

    I'll plug LTSPICE here, my personal favorite SPICE simulator. It's given away free by Linear Technologies. Although it only comes with SPICE models of a bunch of passives a most Linear products, it's very easy to expand and add new models to. It's also a very powerful, configurable simulator. It's also still in active development unlike PSPICE. New versions get released all the time.
     
  8. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
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    Thanks for the information on OrCAD, do you have a source for this or is it justa rumour you have heard?

    I agree with your sentiments regarding functionality and aesthetics.

    Yes, LTSpice is regularly plugged here and widely recommended. For those interested: http://www.linear.com/designtools/software/

    Dave
     
  9. FredM

    Senior Member

    Dec 27, 2005
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    I have just downloaded LTspice + played with it for a few hours.. This package is GOOD!

    I use Proteus as it is a complete EDA including simulation and PCB layout etc.. It is stable, and I thought it was fast.. but LTspice took a circuit I have had difficulty with in Proteus, and ran it at about 3 times as fast..

    I have been looking for a cheap EDA which I could use to provide data to clients.. This will do nicely! :)

    It could also be useful here.. it would be great if we posted schematics / simulations in a format which everyone could access.. And a free download of this software makes that possible.. We could also share our symbols / components / models etc.. (hey Dave - another project? LOL! :D)

    Thanks for posting that link!
     
  10. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
    6,960
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    One at a time! :D

    Additionally, we have added the extension .ASC to upload files associated with LTSpice. To quote RonH who requested this: "By importing the .ASC file into LTspice, members are able to duplicate a simulation without having to redraw the schematic."

    No problems.

    Dave
     
  11. scubasteve_911

    Senior Member

    Dec 27, 2007
    1,202
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    I recommend Multisim for its convergence assistant, it's actually quite impressive! It is true that most platforms use the same flavour of SPICE, but just fluff up the GUI. The convergence assistant helps resolve a lot of mistakes beginners make in circuits that stop the simulation from running, making it idiot proof.

    I'm not a really big fan of manufacturer-made software, since it always biases their products by only having them available in the library. Eventhough free is good!

    Steve
     
  12. FredM

    Senior Member

    Dec 27, 2005
    124
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    The problem I have found (and am sure I am not alone) is that none of the popular EDA's have a common interface.. I use Proteus and Spice-Age, and have clients who use Orcad, MultiSim,Tina,and many others.. The only common (with exception of PSpice) interface seems to be the SPICE netlist which can be imported into most EDA's, but does not carry symbol or schematic data.

    I need to be able to produce schematics (at least) for clients - and do documentation containing wavforms etc.. Most of my clients are electronics designers etc, who would much prefer the data in a form they can run as a simulation.. Rather than having to take a schematic and re-enter this into their EDA package..

    This is where a good free simulator like LTCSpice comes in .. I can prepare simulations and my clients can run these. Models would be a problem if the simulator was restricted to the vendors parts - but it is not a problem when one can download SPICE models for most parts, or create models from SPICE primitives.. Sure, there is some work involved in importing and assigning models to symbols, or creating symbols - but once done, it becomes part of your library.

    I like Proteus because it is a good complete package, and I can run extremely complex simulations including co-simulation of a wide range of microcontrollers and simple PLD's .. It is possible to design a complete system with MCU and peripheral components, and do all the hardware and software debugging, completely within the Proteus environment..

    I do not expect to get a similar EDA free - but for lesser jobs, free EDA is most often all that is needed.
     
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