If you are in the PCB design world then you will know exactly how difficult it is to deliver exactly what the customer is looking for due to constraints in software. A lot of work has been put into this over the past decade and you will see massive improvements in how developers have tried to simplify this putting the designer’s needs at the heart of these changes. Below, we are going to discuss how PCB design software has been simplified.
Simplicity Through Training
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It wasn’t that long ago when you required to download multiple discs on to a computer in order to get these software types active. This also included the inconvenience of potentially transferring a lot of data from one computer to another due to the constraints of the software. This is all in the past as modern cadence PCB design software now has the capability for them to be downloaded from the internet with just one click – some options such as the Altium Designer can even be downloaded for free. This will also include updates to software or versions. It is common for this type of software to be updated regularly, therefore, the updates from the software website are available (and usually for free).
In addition to this, the recent software developments may seem pretty complex (even for professional designers). As such there is usually pretty good training packages included in the purchases of the software – specifically, if you purchase from the source. This can include virtual training courses that are either low cost or even free (included in the purchase price). Internet forums are also a good source of information and a place to get help. In these forums, you will come across others just like you who are looking to get simple guidance and help (or tips). It is not uncommon for the experts in the industry to be active in these forums offering help and guidance.
Simplicity Through Advanced Tools
There are advanced tools being updated frequently on PCB design software, therefore, be sure to check these out. This can include layer calculations on your behalf or even the way the component is viewed. You will normally find that designers will initiate their design in 2D mode and then move on to 3D when they want to see the overall design, usually in assembly mode. This is an advanced tool that is not available on all software so be sure to check this out in advance.
Simplicity Through Simulations
One of the most important improvements recent PCB design software has is the fact that you can run simulations. In order to help prevent any flaws in the design these simulations when run can help identify if the component will operate effectively. You can run this simulation on a single piece or on an assembled component. Although the simulations are not 100% effective and there are things they may not pick up they are a good indication of the effectiveness of your design and will assist making sure enough pro-active work has been completed to prevent a poorly designed component go to manufacture.