Author Topic: Mentor HyperLynx Alternatives?  (Read 3313 times)

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Offline TheAdmiralty

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Mentor HyperLynx Alternatives?
« on: January 01, 2019, 05:52:48 pm »
Afternoon!  Looking for opinions.  I do PCB design work for a defense contractor where we use Mentor Graphics' software packages... Xpedition/xPCB, HyperLynx VX, and the works.

Primary question, is there any open-source/inexpensive (ie not $10K+) software that an individual could get their hands on for board-level signal and power integrity analysis to the order of HyperLynx?  I know most CAD suites can give you netlist that can be simulated with IBIS/Spice models, but I'm referring to things like crosstalk sims of the routed board, or impedance calculation of a decoupling network, or DC drop simulation.  Things like that.

Second, I've worked with Altium Designer 17 and am kicking myself for not taking it when they offered me a perpetual license for $1,200 after a student license expired a while back, and so now I'm 'stuck' with DipTrace.  I love DipTrace, have paid for the full unlocked version over the years, and think it's easily the best of the entry-level PWB CAD programs - but it just isn't suited for high-speed where signal/power integrity become an issue.  I'm tempted to call up Altium's rep again and see if I can talk them back into that offer, but does Altium Designer 18 have anything that would even help me out here?

Thoughts welcome!

Offline asmi

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Re: Mentor HyperLynx Alternatives?
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2019, 04:45:00 pm »
Cadence recently added impedance and coupling analysis into Orcad PCB Editor Professional edition - I've described some of the changes here. I was able to purchase a license for Capture + PCB Editor Professional bundle for only $1800 (this is the price of their 1 year maintenance subscription, the actual license was free, so 5K$ discount) by telling to a sales rep that I'm just an "advanced hobbyist" and so would never afford the full price. So you might want to try the same thing, just make it very clear that you need it for a hobby use. Even though the actual license I got doesn't have any restrictions for a commercial use.
So far all my hi-speed routing worked on a first try, so these sims (there is also SigXplorer to simulate a single trace - both pre-route and post-route) are definitely useful and worth the money. Infact I recently extended my maintenance subscription for another year, as updates I received over the first year were totally worth the price. And it was super-reliable for me as well - I never had any crashes, data corruptions or any other technical issues over time I'm using the software.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2019, 04:47:23 pm by asmi »

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