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New to PCB - Help?

  1. Jul 26, 2010 #1
    Hey All,

    I am glad to be a part of this Forum. I am brand new to PCB design and I am working on a project related to PCB designing and manufacturing. At present we have free software's available which helps in PCB designing. Can anyone suggest me which is the best software available for designing PCBs. Information on this would be appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 26, 2010 #2

    berkeman

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    Staff: Mentor

    Eagle is a popular introductory package. What software are you using for the schematic capture? It's best if the PCB layout software is coupled with the [STRIKE]PCB layout[/STRIKE] schematic capture software. Is the circuit digital, analog, or mixed-signal?
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2010
  4. Jul 26, 2010 #3
    My preference:
    Pads PCB & Power Logic where cost is not a major consideration.
    DipTrace where cost is a major consideration. (DipTrace is also easier to use than Pads for simpler PCB's)
     
  5. Jul 26, 2010 #4
    Eagle's GUI nearly drove me to suicide. However it is the only free, full-service program that I could find. Even though it costs a bit more to produce and has other limitations, for small boards and proto-type quantities I skurried back to http://www.expresspcb.com/ with my tail between my legs. Their free software is blindingly simple (in comparison to Eagle), but it has no auto-routing (which I found useless in Eagle anyway, but didn't really try to use) and ties you into using their production facility and prices.
     
  6. Jul 26, 2010 #5

    berkeman

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    Staff: Mentor

    Yeah, I guess I should have qualified my post by saying that I only used Eagle to view a schematic that I was working with (from another designer outside my company). I haven't used their tools, but could believe that they are hard to work with.
     
  7. Jul 26, 2010 #6
    I've found Eagle to produce suicidal tendencies as well. I'm currently using Ultiboard in conjunction with Multisim and have a good amount of success. Its very intuitive to use but lacks in the library department. Fortunately parts are very easy to make and use spice models for simulation. There's lots of good programs out there though. Proteus is popular along with OrCad and Altium Designer. I would recommend just downloading the evaluation versions and seeing which one feels best and is in your price range.


    :confused:
    Uhhh......?
     
  8. Jul 26, 2010 #7

    berkeman

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    Staff: Mentor

    Oopsies -- fixing that now. Thanks Topher.
     
  9. Jul 26, 2010 #8
    For layout, I use http://freepcb.com/" [Broken].

    Otto
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  10. Jul 28, 2010 #9
    DFM Methodology

    Thank you so much for your replies. It was really helpful. Recently I came across few articles on web regarding DFM (Design for Manufacturability) methodology which helps designers incorporate manufacturing knowledge during the initial design process, preventing design errors early in the design process and reducing the need for costly corrections later. Also one of my friends suggested me that we have free DFM software’s offered by few PCB manufacturers which is of great help to PCB designers. Ever heard of DFM methodology? Thanks much!
     
  11. Jul 28, 2010 #10

    berkeman

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    Staff: Mentor

    Re: DFM Methodology

    Yes, it is very common in the industry. Most companies will have DFM guidelines that are managed by the Manufacturing Engineering group. And Contract Manufacturers will have their own DFM binders that you can use in your design that they will be building for you.
     
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