RE: [Homebrew_PCBs] Re: Software Recommendations
> decide. I really like the idea of printing the traces with my printer,PCBExpress can't do this directly, they add a grey background and dots
> making a negative, and exposing and etching my own boards.
to the printout to prevent it. You can futz with the image and remove
this but it's a pain, especially as you don't have the elements that
make more complex boards more simple. Like transferring netlists, (most
useful) the DRC (pretty useful for double checking your work) and
autorouting (quite useful to get you quickly to 90% done)
I switched from PCBExpress to Eagle and never looked back (except to
transcribe some older projects) yes the user interface is a bit klunky
but it's livable with
Anthony Toft <toftat@...>
- --- In Homebrew_PCBs@yahoogroups.com, Anthony Toft <toftat@c...>
> > decide. I really like the idea of printing the traces with myprinter,
> > making a negative, and exposing and etching my own boards.dots
> PCBExpress can't do this directly, they add a grey background and
> to the printout to prevent it. You can futz with the image andremove
> this but it's a pain, especially as you don't have the elements that(most
> make more complex boards more simple. Like transferring netlists,
> useful) the DRC (pretty useful for double checking your work) andklunky
> autorouting (quite useful to get you quickly to 90% done)
> I switched from PCBExpress to Eagle and never looked back (except to
> transcribe some older projects) yes the user interface is a bit
> but it's livable withAnthony is correct.
> Anthony Toft <toftat@c...>
Express only offers a simple output and even if you bring it into
PAINT and remove all the dots and get a picture that looks like a
board, it will not have the exact pin hole layout.
If you plan on going the Toner Transfer route, you would be well
served to use one of the free versons of the softwar or just do it in
your cad program.
- re. negative images - If you can output gerbers, you can get almost
any manipulation of the impage you want via the various gerber
utils. I wouldn't bother with a layout package that cant do that.
I am an Eagle user, Its powerful, I like it and have gotten used to
the interface but it is *very* non-intuitive, especially if you are
used to using Windows Software. Every command is a little different
(some do right click, some dont, for example) and some operations are
a lot more complex than they need to be (move multiple objects
and "clip board" operations, for examples). But the free package is
quite capable and worth spending the time to learn.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Michael Johnston" <mike_johnston@...>
Sent: Wednesday, April 28, 2004 6:39 AM
Subject: [Homebrew_PCBs] Software Recommendations
> Sorry about the previous post. I got to clicking a bit too fast in
> I've been evaluating different schematic capture and pcb layout programs
> Windows for the last two months. Of what I've seen, there seem to be
> basic classes of software. (1) Garbage that is not worth the time to
> download, (2) limited usability and (3) ridiculously expensive (>$1500).
> Several programs fall into the first category (I won't list them for fear
> offending someone's favorite program). There is no need to go into the
> third. That leaves the middle category.
> Programs like EasyPC are a pleasure to use but are significantly lacking
> functionality. The well thought out user interface allows you to sit down
> and actually be productive in a matter of minutes. But limited
> functionality keeps you from going too far. At the other end of the scale
> is Eagle. Excellent functionality but totally lacking in a functional
> interface. Now before anyone says "You're crazy, Eagle's great you just
> need to give it a chance" let me say that I will fully agree with you that
> Eagle will do just about everything a home hobbyist and many pro's will
> need. BUT, any program that is going to take three weeks of my time just
> figure out how to create new libraries, get them entered into a schematic
> and create a board layout is NOT how I define "functional". It may be
> once you know it, but I would rather spend the learning time actually
> something productive with another program. With EasyPC I was able to
> all of these things out (as far as the cripleware version would allow) in
> under a couple of hours.
> So, is there anything out there with the usability of EasyPC and the
> functionality of Eagle that doesn't fall into category three that I just
> haven't come across yet? What is the closest I can get to both worlds?
> What do the people in this group use?
Pulsonix is excellent:
It is produced by the same company as EasyPC, but intended for professional
Leon Heller, G1HSM
> On a more serious note, though, does OrCAD offer a student discount?The student version is free... however its limited to the number of parts,
and I don't think you get the autorouter. At least it used to be that way.