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Program for designing simple circuits

  1. Apr 3, 2005 #1
    Does anyone know of any software (preferably free) that can design relatively simple cicuits?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 3, 2005 #2


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    Electronic Workbench can design and test circuits, but it is not free.
  4. Apr 3, 2005 #3
    try this page, it has plenty of CAD proggies to do just that. Go down to Electrical CAD systems to find the stuff specialized for electronics. Of course, you can still use other CAD proggies to do the diagrams as well. Most of these are free.

  5. Apr 3, 2005 #4
    circuitmaker2000 has a student edition. Do a search for "SPICE circuit" on google and comb through the results. OrCAD has a trial version of PSpice also I think.

    Are you looking for simulation software or software to generate circuits for you? Are you looking for analog or digital or mixed signal circuits?
  6. Apr 3, 2005 #5
    The one I use is called Tina - really nice in that it generates various graphs, noise analysis, etc for ya, and has a full-featured (omit print) demo. See http://www.tina.com/ for more info.
  7. Apr 3, 2005 #6
    Go for SPICE if you are EE or ECE major. SPICE is used extensivly in industry and will help you get a internship.
  8. Apr 5, 2005 #7
    I was just looking for something simple right now that can be used to test simple electronics labs like to find the resistance of a voltmeter. but once i'm into EE i will get SPICE
  9. Apr 5, 2005 #8
    For pspice you would have somthing like this for a voltage divider:
    Code (Text):

    *voltage source from ground to node 1
    V1 1 0 10V
    *Resitor from node 1 to node 2
    R1 1 2 1KOhm
    *Resitor from node 2 to ground
    R2 2 0 2kOhm

    *show all node voltages in output file
    Not hard even for simple circuits.

    Here is a site with downloads and walk throughs if you want to take a closer look.
  10. Apr 5, 2005 #9


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    Download a student/eval copy of OrCAD. It has a graphical schematic capture tool, and can do more than most practicing EEs need to be able to do. It has a steep learning curve, however. We're here to help you, should you need it. Davorak has made a reasonable suggestion, since OrCAD's GUI is typically the part that's hard to learn, and using a text-file based simulation would make sense for a circuit with fewer than say 10 components.

    - Warren
  11. Apr 7, 2005 #10
    electronic software

    hi ya?
    i want to just give you the best suggestion to use a software called TINA PRO 6 which is used in electronics. i don't know about the price or is it free but it is the best software i used to design electrical circuit.
  12. Apr 7, 2005 #11
    No question

    On this topic Chroot is dead on -- Pspice is the only way to go -- His comment on the learning curve is I believe correct it does take a little time and effort to learn -- but as opposed to what was said here it has a windows
    interface you do NOT have to encode components by lines of code you can make a schematic very simply and then analyze it in the frequency or time domain . For someone into electronics it is invaluable because so many
    components are available as included libraries . For instance many of Philips transistors to over 50 Ghz FT are available as complete non-linear models .
    The student version is available free and I believe without time limit but it does restrict you on the compexity of the circiuts -- for many this is no
    problem .
    Pspice has been around for many years it is well proven in a type of software where there are many traps ---
    If you learn this -- and maybe there are more modern versions ( it will
    almost never let you down -- provided only you understand a little it's limits -- like any other software ) .
  13. Apr 7, 2005 #12
    That is really bad advice

    Pspice today is in windows format -- you can do schematic capture in very simple ways -- it takes seconds to set up a circuit and then analyze it
    It is the only software I know which can accurately analyze a simple one transistor oscillator -- and tell you if there is some spurious oscillation at
    a couple of Ghz . You do not have to write one single line of code .
    But as Chroot said there is a learning curve you cannot expect to learn some complex tool in one second -- but this IS a good tool in my view
    one of the best .

  14. Apr 8, 2005 #13

    I am in ECE. I am eager to learn PSPICE to make myself marketable when I go to work as an electrical engineer. I would problably learn it after my semester exam is over.
    But can anyone suggest how should I go about starting to learn this software? First of all, I do not even have the software in my PC, so besides the Circuitmaker student edition being DL free, what other PSPICE software (free) can I use to learn? Actually, I agree with Chroot that for more complex circuits with like 20 components, it is a torture to write codes for simulation purposes, so it is better if there is Schematic drawing with simulation.
  15. Apr 8, 2005 #14
    PSPICE has actually been discontinued. OrCAD (Cadence) absorbed it into another app. The language you want to learn is SPICE which was developed at Berkely. Do a google search for SPICE and you'll find about 987598375372597459027398745 different versions floating around. If you install Linux then you'll have a lot of F/OSS options available--many distros offer a spice option on install as well. OrCad still has a Psice download available; however, I don't know how much functionality it has.

    To learn SPICE(or PSice) get ahould of one of the millions of online tutorials, think of a project(I usually recommend an H-Bridge designed from scratch because its a real good semiconductor learning tool), and keep playing with the software until you get everything working. That's basically how I (and many people I work with) learned to use this or any other software. Sit down and play with it for a little while. Start simple--an RLC ckt. Move on from there.

    Well, good luck.
  16. Apr 23, 2005 #15
    I got the OrCAD 9.2 group of software, I must say it has to be industry standard because there is everything in it even PCB design. Wow.
  17. Apr 23, 2005 #16


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    OrCAD 10.0 has been out for a while. OrCAD is one of a few different design packages you'll see used everywhere in industry. Protel and Pads are the most common competitors, and I honestly prefer Protel over OrCAD.

    - Warren
  18. Apr 23, 2005 #17
    Yea, i think OrCAD 10 even has Tina Pro and others.

    One thing though, I am trying to recreate a simple experiment I had to do a few weeks ago, which involved finding the resistance of a voltmeter. So there was a powersupply, resistor and voltmeter all connected in series. The resistance was changed and you had to record the voltage shown on the voltmeter. I have designed that circuit in OrCAD capture and when i ran a simulation the results were not what i expected. When the resistance is increased there should be a voltage drop causing the voltage on the voltmeter (which is in series) to drop. No matter what value i give for the resistor I get the same 5V (which i used for the DC power supply).

    Does anyone know why this is happening?
  19. Apr 23, 2005 #18


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    You'd have to give us a screenshot showing the circuit and the test points you applied.

    - Warren
  20. Apr 23, 2005 #19
    Below is the link to the circuit that i have

    http://www.themodule.net/img/schem.gif [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  21. Apr 24, 2005 #20


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    Your picture does not show the test points you applied, and is therefore incomplete.

    - Warren
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