Where to start learning more EE on my own?

  • Thread starter Tyrion101
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In summary, MATLAB can be helpful for visualizing equations in sub-areas of EE, and SPICE is best for simulating analog circuits.f
  • #1
I'm currently in college for EE, and have only started with prerequisite classes like English and what not, I kind of want to get a jump start, into something basic, that hopefully doesn't require much math, any suggestions? I'm thinking of books or videos on the web where I can kind of get an idea of what I'll be doing once the real stuff starts.
  • #3
Matlab is helpful for sure, but we've only used it in a couple classes.
In my EE program we've taken 2 programming courses (more if you're in computer engineering) so learning a C type language would give you a boost in that respect.

Could check out youtube or (engineeringvideos.com I think) they have lots of videos covering topics you'll get into
I did that for a couple classes (DE for example) and while I can't say I learned the material from the videos, it helped provide extra context for the lectures which made it easier to follow along :)
  • #4
How does MATLAB compare to other simulations such as SPICE? I am considering purchasing a copy to work with during my 18 days off between semesters.
  • #5
Depends on what you want to do with it. If you just want to play around with circuits and what not. I might suggest http://www.falstad.com/circuit/ as a SPICE. Its nice and its free.
But I've never personally used MATLAB for SPICE functionality so I don't really know all what it can do.
  • #6
MATLAB is totally different from SPICE. They are good for very different things. MATLAB is great for visualizing equations in all sub-areas of EE, and particularly strong in more math-centric things like device physics, signal processing, and control systems.

SPICE, of course, is at its best simulating analog circuits, although it can do a bit of digital and can do general differential equation work if you're creative in building your models. If you want to investigate systems based on differential equations, MATLAB is a better tool.

An open-source version of MATLAB is called Octave. I've never used it, but I've heard it is good and mostly compatible.

If you want to do SPICE but don't want to deal with an applet, LTSpice from Linear Technology is also free and quite amazing.

Good luck!
  • #7
"EE" is pretty broad - and SPICE on its own can be ( is) pretty abstract. Can you think of a project to build that would interest you? Even a basic KIT - build it and then seek to fully understand it - probably more powerful than approaching anything theoretically.

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