EDA Software Recommendations
Long time fan, first time poster. Let me take the opportunity to thank everyone for this awesome site, I've learned a lot from here.
I'm fresh out of school, where I was heavily bombarded with ADS usage. Unfortunately, my student license is about to run out and I'm looking for an alternative to use for work. I build power amplifiers @ approx 1 kW, filters, combiners, couplers etc. in the LF,HF, and VHF range. I do occasional transmission line design and need a good EM simulator to match.
I'm looking at Keysight's Genesys; anyone have any thoughts on it? It seems like more of a system level (as opposed to a circuit level) tool, but I'm not sure. Any other realistic alternatives? Really looking for an alternative to the 100k price tag attached to ADS, especially since I don't do any MMIC/RFIC design.
Thanks for your consideration!
Have you looked at Microwave Office with Axiem? I was forced to switch from ADS, nine years ago, now I don't want to go back. It may be cheaper; I don;t get involved with pricing.
Does anyone have an opinion on what the best shareware is for a retired microwave engineer? Asking for a friend...
Free you say? Ah, well now...
Although at work I'm spoiled by access to the like usual suspects, MWO, Axiem, Analyst, HFSS, Cadence Allegro etc there are a couple open-source GPL licensed tools that are worth a look:
Qucs - does Spice-like things, S-parameter stuff, harmonic balance and a touch of ADS about some aspects of the interface:
- if you're not wanting to call up Modelithics libraries or foundry PDKs it's not bad.
openEMS - EM solver based on FDTD, C++ solver back-end, Octave/Matlab front-end:
- has some nice examples to get you going.
If you're going completely 'off-grid' with your EDA tools, then there's at least one effort to make PCB footprints for the open-source PCB tool KiCad from openEMS simulation structures.
I've used openEMS as yet-another-simulator-method to check something I had in HFSS. There is a bit of a learning curve but retired engineers have plenty of free time, right?
I'd also recommend Microwave Office. I've been using it for 20 years for board level RF design (antennas, PA) and system level stuff using the VSS product. The base product is linear simulation and layout, then you'd probably want harmonic balance and Axiem for planar EM. I have been using Analyst a lot for antennas, though unless you are doing 3D structures, you can probably just use Axiem if everything is on a PCB.
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