# Analog ASIC design - what tools to use?

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#### jourval

##### Member level 4
analog asic tools

Is anybody work with analog ASICs ?
What is the best CAD tools dedicated
for this application, if any ?

#### xmizi

##### Member level 1
Agilent's ADS is the most famous CAD for analog and mix signal design.

#### rfsystem

Cadence is the best if you spent a lot of learning time to design real circuits. It supplies you with a complete solution if the designkit for the target technology is complete also. If you want to do analog circuit design only, w/o layout backannotation and further complex tools it is better to use DesignLab, Microcap, Orcad, Multisim or other integrated tools on PC.

#### riz_aj

Is Cadence s/w is only used on Unix based system? Is there any way around this? Does it work on Linux?

It makes it hard for regular ppl to learn/use except if you work for big corp.

#### electronlover

##### Junior Member level 2
i hear your pain. But let me rejoin with this:

1) in several months, Cadence is going to come out with a package (for the analog-mixed signal/layout side) that displays everything in Unix, but actually runs the core( spectre) on a linux machine of your choice.
2) The previous is a prelude to a complete switch-over to linux within(hopefully) a year.

#### cssheu

##### Junior Member level 3
Try Tanner , it is pc version.
I think it is easy , and useful for some design.

#### rfsystem

Interesting to hear that Cadence first port Spectre to Linux. The sparc engines are running out of steam and could not follow AMD/Intel. That could be the reason to port first Spectre. Spectre was a fresh tool at 1992 with e.g. good DC algorithms at that time. But now every other have these built in and complete new spice method are in production. Try Hsim, it is running everywhere and for analog 3-10x faster than spectre on the same platform.

##### Member level 3
of all sim tools spectre has best convergence

G

Try Nassda HSIM!

#### ptoo30

##### Member level 3
question what kind of analog design youare going to?
situation 1 up to 300MHz including linear amp I recomend MICROCAP reason is htey have alot of samples (I am using it several GHZ area but not so happy)
situation 2 GHz area design I recomend to use
ADS its fine but expensive.And when you design antennas you use momentum its very slow.
situation 3 A to D converters area HSPICE is defact standard but PSPICE or other spice is good including WINSPICE(free but based on BURKLEY engine)
situation 4 if you need seamless design from sckematic to layout youmay use CADENCE it require huge cost but easy to use.
rgd

#### okguy

##### Full Member level 6
I find eldo more accurate and faster than HSPICE. But only UNIX even not linux.

OkGuy?

#### AaronDu

##### Member level 2
You can use the HSPICE or Cadence tools , but these tools only help you decrease error , if you want to design a good analog ASIC , must to learn more experience

#### odyseus

I personally think ADS is the best tool -

(1) It is the 'industry' standard for RF/Analogue design.

(2) You can run time domain (eg Spice) and frequency domain simulations.

(3) As most ASIC design consists of bipolars or CMOS (or both) then these can easily be modelled using the non-linear active device models so that you can say build up an op-amp or gilbert-cell mixer etc.

(4) You can simulate oscillators to predict harmonics, output power and importantly phase noise.

(5) Small circuits can be linked together at a higher level and simulated.

(6) Probably the most important - you can do system's analysis - with complex digital modulation schemes etc - each circuit function can then be one of your 'building blocks'

(7) ADS runs on a PC and is easier to get hold of...