Free simulator


I would like to test my implementation of a DSP block (CORDIC-based quadrature mixer + several filters and decimators + two NCOs etc.). It has been written in pure VHDL and should work on a Cyclone device. I have a copy of Quartus 2 Web Edition and will not buy a full version of it, since it is a non-profit enterprise. The problem is that I don't want to check whether a finite automaton is correct, but to perform a full-scale simulation (spectral analysis, SNR, SFDR estimations etc.) and compare the results with my reference design in Octave (Matlab). So I need a VHDL simulator which can read and write data (24-bit integers) from/to a text file. The simulator shipped with Quartus doesn't support this feature and, unfortunately, there is no free version of ModelSim at Altera's website. So, could you please recommend me a suitable tool (it doesn't have to provide a GUI, a batch simulator would be even better)?

Best regards Piotr Wyderski

Reply to
Piotr Wyderski
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The Quartus VWF files are readable text files, and the format is pretty simple to understand. It is not hard at all to write programs to generate them from 24 bit integers, and to generate

24 bit integers from them. I have not yet found a limit to the length of the files that can be processed.

-- glen

Reply to
glen herrmannsfeldt

I have used Savant for this purpose for a long time ago. It was not very robust against syntax errors/bugs back then, but for good code it works. Maybe it's gotten better.

Somewhat praised free simulator is GHDL. You might want to check it out. Included in Debian Linux, by the way. I haven't tried it myself.

Third completely free sim is FreeHDL, but when I last time checked it was quite unfinished.

Of proprietary (but free) simulators, I've been quite satisfied with Symphony EDA. Works well, but is a bit slower than ModelSim/QuickHDL.

Use Google to find the programs.

Reply to
Tuukka Toivonen

I was having a quick look a week or so ago and noticed that version

3.0 (from memory) is out soon with big performance improvements promised.

This, with a top of the range new PC might be as fast as Modelsim running on a PC that's 18 months old and would be about 0.25 of the cost (in the UK).


Reply to
Nial Stewart

Thank you all for your advices, I'll try to find a suitable tool.

Best regards Piotr Wyderski

Reply to
Piotr Wyderski

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