Does a good job
Looks like most of the issues with version 3.3 that were mentioned in the reviews have been fixed in version 3.4. I am very pleased with the application so far.
A Great Application, Improved
I've used an older version (version 2.0) for years, and I really liked it. Sure, for certain impedance values there were polygons instead of arcs, but that didn't stop it from being a VERY useful and educational tool for understanding both impedance matching and the Smith chart itself.Since my old version, Smith Chart for Mac has been improved quite a bit. For one thing, there's a "Schematic" window that shows exactly how to assemble the circuit you just designed. And in the current version (version 3.3) you have the added ability to edit ANY element, not just the last one added.This application is well worth the $14.95 price if you do any kind of radio work.
Smith Chart works as well as comparable commercial programs costing thousands of dollars. In any microwave/rf matching circuit of useful utility, it is common to use a resistive element, sometimes to broaden the Q and sometimes because of bias circuit requirements. I would have complained had a resistive element NOT been included since it is so basic to bias networks. I have run Smith on an iMac and MacBook Pro and have never experienced any rendering programs. The user interface is comparable to commercial programs one uses in industrial development. Overall, this program is a tremedous bargain for the price. Five stars...
this is a rare case where I wish the process to demand a refund was simple. the shortcomings of this program are numerous. generally it appears to be technically correct although with occasional (and survivable) rendering problems where arcs appear as PWL/polygons. i'm not sure of the need for resistive elements in matching networks but maybe that's just my particular work. however the authors are very presumptuous by (a) forcing you to use their preferred units (nH, pF) with no way to change them, and then (b) showing a limited number of digits in the display of units such that if you enter ".001" it shows up as zero.another set of shortcomings is the ignoring of Mac programming standards- for example, one should be able to edit matching elements by double-clicking on the element list (but no, you have to hit the "Edit elements" button). speaking of buttons, does the layout really follow any rules of logic? Inductor and resistor options are side-by-side but capacitor choices are vertical. plus the button labels are labelled in a way that makes using them tiresome because you have to read 3 words on each label to find the one you want. they could easily be laid out in rows of R, L and C, and then columns of series and shunt. color coding or grouping wouldn't hurt. another irritation is that is no user control for the smith chart appearance so you have to contend with bright green admittance lines on a white background- ugh. the lack of user-definable colors is simply lazy.i could go on but i think the point is made. a much better *free* option is linsmith via fink (although not 10.7 compatible yet, my main reason for trying SCFM). Until Seward Salvage can match half the features of linsmith, my reccommendation is to skip SCFM.