Exploring Alternatives to HSPICE for Circuit Simulation

In summary: I tried to, but it's just too big a project to do in a single sitting.In summary, Warren does not like hspice because it is not intuitive and it has convergence problems. He also likes LTSPICE and Electronics Workbench.
  • #1
Swapnil
459
6
I am using hspice right now and I have to say that it is not the most intuitive thing in the world. What other softwares like spice are out there? Which ones do you guys use for simulating a circuit that you made?
 
Engineering news on Phys.org
  • #2
With power comes complexity.

If you're using Windows, I like Linear Technologies' LTSPICE (SwitcherCAD III). It's free, and is about the most intuitive simulator around, assuming you understand Spice syntax and analysis directives.

- Warren
 
  • #3
Take the time to know HSPICE. It's very useful. With AvanWaves, it's a very nice program.
 
  • #4
Swapnil said:
I am using hspice right now and I have to say that it is not the most intuitive thing in the world. What other softwares like spice are out there? Which ones do you guys use for simulating a circuit that you made?

What specifically do you not like about hspice?
 
  • #5
LeBrad said:
What specifically do you not like about hspice?
The fact that you can't drag and drop the circuit elements in some sort of a virtual breadboard. Also, the that you have to use hspice in combination with AWaves or Csope. It is just too much of a hassel. Why can't they just integrate everything into one?
 
  • #6
guys, what do you think about PSpice?
 
  • #7
PSpice is not really used by anyone in industry, but it's a good for students. It's a little hard to use, though.

- Warren
 
  • #8
Warren, thank you, I am using it in school and you are right it's not easy to use it.
 
  • #9
I concur. :)
 
  • #10
There's also Electronics Workbench if you'd like an alternative, albeit not as advanced (windows only I believe).
 
Last edited:
  • #11
hspice error messages are not too intuitive. Also, in some (entirely valid) analog circuits with feedback, it can have convergence problems, and even if the equations do converge, you can get weird things like signals rising _before_ its trigger comes along. :eek:

(this is about cadence hspice - the recommendation by cadence is to use spectre, which isn't really helpful :/ )
 
  • #12
jbusc said:
Also, in some (entirely valid) analog circuits with feedback, it can have convergence problems, and even if the equations do converge, you can get weird things like signals rising _before_ its trigger comes along. :eek:

Wow! What entirely valid analog circuit failed to converge for every timestep?

I am really curious to know.

It must not have been a linear circuit. I have been thinking and the only thing I can come up with is that the simulation started with an invalid initial condition (a la bias point problems), or some feedback loop that is so fast, or some component value that is so extreme, the precision of the native floating point type of the machine matters.

I do occasionally have problems with letting the computer figure out dc bias points because things like leakeage into a cap confuse it, but just using an .ic statement fixes that.

If the problem was some esoteric math issue with the model you were using couldn't you just map out that part to a thevinin or norton equivalent via a dependant source statement? Or to state the same thing another way, just substitute in the equations that you mentioned that do converge, and presumably give the desired accuracy, via a dependant source statement. Kinda cheating, sure, but it does fix the problem.

Did you mock up the circuit on a bench? Are you sure there wasn't a positive feedback loop or resonance hiding in there?
 
Last edited:

1. What is HSPICE and why are people looking for alternatives?

HSPICE is a circuit simulation software that is commonly used by engineers and scientists to model and analyze electronic circuits. However, as technology advances and circuit designs become more complex, HSPICE may not always provide the most accurate or efficient results. Therefore, people are looking for alternatives that can better meet their simulation needs.

2. What are some potential alternatives to HSPICE?

Some popular alternatives to HSPICE include LTSpice, PSpice, SIMetrix, and ngspice. These software programs offer similar features and capabilities as HSPICE, but with different user interfaces and pricing options.

3. Are these alternatives as accurate as HSPICE?

The accuracy of these alternatives may vary depending on the specific circuit being simulated and the user's proficiency with the software. However, many of these alternatives have been extensively tested and validated against HSPICE and have been found to provide comparable results.

4. Are there any advantages to using alternatives to HSPICE?

Yes, there are several advantages to using alternatives to HSPICE. These may include lower costs, better user interfaces, and additional features such as mixed-signal simulation and thermal analysis. Additionally, some alternatives may also offer faster simulation speeds and better compatibility with other software programs.

5. Is it difficult to switch from HSPICE to an alternative?

Switching from HSPICE to a different simulation software may require some learning and adjustment, but it is not necessarily difficult. Many of these alternatives offer user-friendly interfaces and provide resources such as tutorials and forums to help users get started. It may also be helpful to consult with colleagues or experts who have experience with the specific alternative being considered.

Similar threads

Replies
9
Views
4K
  • Electrical Engineering
Replies
26
Views
2K
Replies
4
Views
823
  • Electrical Engineering
Replies
4
Views
2K
  • Electrical Engineering
Replies
4
Views
1K
  • Electrical Engineering
Replies
2
Views
410
Replies
5
Views
790
Replies
4
Views
643
Replies
1
Views
947
  • Electrical Engineering
Replies
5
Views
2K
Back
Top