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ISO free PCB design software

ISO free PCB design software

(OP)
Any recommendations?

RE: ISO free PCB design software

For professional use?

I use Diptrace
http://diptrace.com
They have "free" (non-profit use only) and paid versions (well worth the small cost)

Kicad is another commonly recommended (open source/free)
http://kicad-pcb.org/

RE: ISO free PCB design software

(OP)
Thanks mcgyvr. This is mainly just for a few little school projects but I might also want to use it when I go back to work, if it works with files I made in altium. I'm guessing that's unlikely so I'll probably just buy altium at that point.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

I haven't used Kicad yet but many like it..
I found Diptrace really easy to learn/get up and going and I bought it and use it at work.. (Altium,etc.. are just too costly/feature rich for my needs) but so far Diptrace has done everything I need of it and more.
But most if not all PCB programs don't transfer from one to the other easily if at all..

RE: ISO free PCB design software

The two mcgyvr suggest are the only two likely worth your time.
There is also Eagle which is free for miniscule size boards.

Keith Cress
kcress - http://www.flaminsystems.com

RE: ISO free PCB design software

What do you mean by "ISO".
I may have missed something here, I'm still stuck with PADS-PCB netlists and Gerber output.

Benta.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

(OP)
Thanks for the suggestions. I'm going to try Kicad since it's freeer.

Benta, I guess this meaning of ISO doesn't really fit in this forum but in this case it meant 'in search of'.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

OK, ISO is "in search of", not some standard from the ISO organization. Avoiding acronyms improves communication.

Apart from that, I've been using FreePCB for the last 8 years.
It's free, open source and works very well and is quite easy to use. Nothing much has happened since 2011, but it's stable and I haven't run into any bugs yet.
It needs a PADS netlist as input. Component editor is also included, but the supplied library is quite large.
http://www.freepcb.com/

Cheers,

Benta.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

(OP)
I saw an ad for freePCB on facebook. Looks like they give pretty good student deals for small batches of PCB builds. I'll probably get some PCBs built by them.

Tried out Kicad this weekend. Fairly easy to pick up and nice little bonus is that it has template PCBs for Arduino etc.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

In the Linux world there is a free design suite, I don't recall then name right off hand. Includes schematic editor, PCB software etc.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

Quote (djs)

In the Linux world there is a free design suite, I don't recall then name right off hand. Includes schematic editor, PCB software etc.
Thats kicad.. possibly gEDA

RE: ISO free PCB design software

gEDA. I used the chain to design and build a pool chemical controller.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

@mudandsnow, have you looked at Geppetto from Gumstix? It is a different take on PCB design: Free-to-use, intuitive, web-based UI, no routing and boards arrive in 15 business days. Geppetto has been awarded Best of 2015 by Electronic Design.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

I got interested in DipTrace and it feels extremely competent at that price. But I don't feel competent at all - can't enter greek letters (like omega, for ohms). The character set is TrueType, so Unicode doesn't work. Must be simple, this. But not to me...

Gunnar Englund
www.gke.org
--------------------------------------
Half full - Half empty? I don't mind. It's what in it that counts.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

Not sure about that - waiting for some more input. There must be a standard way of defining resistor values, but it escaped me.
In the meanwhle, I like DipTrace more and more. Had to create an old metric DIN 41617 board connector and fit metric dimensions to the .1" grid of the PCB. Everything worked like a dream.

Gunnar Englund
www.gke.org
--------------------------------------
Half full - Half empty? I don't mind. It's what in it that counts.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

Copied this from page 25 of www.diptrace.com/books/tutorial.pdf

Now we will add resistance values "10kΩ " for all resistors on this schematic. Since "Ω " is a Unicode
character, it doesn't work in vector fonts, which are set by default in DipTrace. We need to activate
TrueType font for part marking in order to use Unicode characters. Go to "View \ Part Marking \
Font \ TrueType". Since TrueType characters look a bit different from Vector on the design area,
you might need to change font size. We made it a little bit bigger.

Now select all resistors then right click on one of them and select "Properties" from the submenu.
Select "Main" tab and type "47 kΩ" into "Value" field. Click on "Markings" Tab and specify "Main
Marking \ Show \ Value", then go to "Additional Marking \ Show \ RefDes" and click "OK".

RE: ISO free PCB design software

Yes, that is also on page 25 in my manual. Just below the picture with the schematics. That is actually what I tried to - and don't understand how to do. Have you been able to do that? How? Please.

Gunnar Englund
www.gke.org
--------------------------------------
Half full - Half empty? I don't mind. It's what in it that counts.

RE: ISO free PCB design software

I am using Ubuntu 14.04 English (US) setting and Wine (XP mode) and just followed the directions. Following the instructions worked for me. Some fonts will not display the Ω symbol properly, Courier doesn't work, but Courier New, Arial, and Arial Unicode MS do work. When switching to TrueType, Arial is the default (Go to "View \ Part Marking \
Font \<font at bottom of list>) . I don't know how your OS or language selection may affect your results.

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