• Welcome to our site! Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

electronics simulation software

Status
Not open for further replies.

confounded

New Member
Hi, noob question
i've read a few threads on here about simulation software, ive never used it myself before.
You build your circuit on it, and then you can see any voltage, current, wave form etc at any point?
What software should i get? what do you guys use?
Sounds too good to be true!
 

Hero999

Banned
I use LTSPICE most of the time.


Be careful not to rely on simulators too much otherwise they can lead you to trouble.
 

Sceadwian

Banned
I agree with hero LTSpice is quiet powerful, but definitly don't trust it's simualtions 100% the real world is a lot more complicated. That being said it's an awesome tool for playing around with circuits if you don't have expensive test equipment so you can see what's going on. You can see what the voltage current or power is through any point in the circuit relative to ground or any other point in the circuit. It'll even do FFT analsys of your plot data.
It can be downloaded here.
Linear Technology - LTspice IV Downloads and Updates

Hobbyists and professional alike are very fortunate to have really high quality powerful tools like this available for free.
Keep in mind it does take a while to learn to use. But there are plenty of example circuits available both with the softare and on websites like LTspice : LTspice/SwitcherCAD III . It's primarily offered by Linear Tech to showcase their SMPS power supply IC's but it can be used to simulate any analog and most digital systems, though not something like a micro controller I don't think.
 
Last edited:

crutschow

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I never build a circuit without simulating it first. Simulation finds a lot of design errors that would normally show up in the circuit otherwise after you build it. And it's so easy to modify the design and try different things without the pain of buying the components and soldering them into the circuit.

It's true, simulations are not perfect, but for most non-RF analog design it will usually do a pretty good job of predicting the circuit operation. It's only infrequently that the simulation is significantly different from the actual circuit, and that's usually due to poor simulation part models. And if you blow up a component in the simulation because of a faulty design, there's no smoke or loud noises.
 

confounded

New Member
thx for replying guys.

I downloaded ltspice and have started to mess about with it, but it doesnt seem to have the component i want to play with, a MF10 universal monolithic dual switched capacitor filter.
I know that the LMF100 has improved performance but that isnt there either!
Am i just not looking in the right place or does this software not have every IC ever made?
Or is there a place i can download user created components?

http://www.national.com/ds/MF/MF10.pdf
 

Sceadwian

Banned
I have as yet to 'let the smoke out' of anything yet because simulators show you the stupid stuff before you do it =)
 

crutschow

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
thx for replying guys.

I downloaded ltspice and have started to mess about with it, but it doesnt seem to have the component i want to play with, a MF10 universal monolithic dual switched capacitor filter.
I know that the LMF100 has improved performance but that isnt there either!
Am i just not looking in the right place or does this software not have every IC ever made?
Or is there a place i can download user created components?

http://www.national.com/ds/MF/MF10.pdf
Most Spice type analog simulators only have only a limited number of analog models for basic devices such as resistor, caps, op amps, etc., not for complex ICs such as the MF10. You can search for a spice model for the MF10 or MF100 but there may not be any available.
 

audioguru

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I made an extremely low distortion analyser with the notch from an LMF100 and it works perfectly.
I didn't simulate anything, I just read the datasheet and applied it.
 

Sceadwian

Banned
For filters I wouldn't use a simulator too much, like Audio said if you just folllow the data sheets it'll work. Simulators don't take into account the parasitics in analog circuits so for a lot of stuff you REALLY have to know what you're doing with the simulator to get good results for complex analog stuff.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Latest threads

EE World Online Articles

Loading
Top