Electronic Circuit Design

2020-02-19 1812

   (Too be edited; tips and use of EDA software for Amateur Radio and other projects.)

Linux Circuit Design Software

2020-03-06 1427

   Most of these programs should be available in your distro's repository. The programs website should have packages for download otherwise. Circuit Design Software is like AutoCAD but instead of a physcial or mechanical design; it designs electrical connections as well as the physical layout on a printed circuit board.

   KiCAD - A QT/KDE-based program to design circuits and layouts for PCB's. The newer 5.0 version is supposed to have SPICE functionality builtin for circuit simulation and a library of parts from the Digi-key catalog (a major supplier of components). [At the moment recommended]

   gEDA - A Gnome-based program for designing cirucits. It has several smaller programs for pcb layout and BOM's (Bills of Material). Does not have builtin SPICE emulation but can make SPICE files for a separate program.

   PCB - standalone program for layout design of parts on a printed circuit board. Can import and export files from KiCAD or gEDA. Produces Gerber instructions for CNC machines.

   ORCAD - commercial software that I haven not seen but know is used by corporations. Like the others it includes other software for layouts and BOM's. Don't know if it includes SPICE functions.

   GnuCAP / gWave - Replacement for SPICE and an interface to see circuit performance. Combined these two programs will emulate the circuit and display the waveforms of what the circuit will produce.

   Arduino - Programming environment (IDE) and uploader for Arduino devices. These are small microcontrollers that can run binaries and control other hardware. Not quite what you would call a microprocessor (like the ARM chips) but still quite capable. They are used in a number of projects, like SDR (software defined radio).