What Every Good PCB Design Software Should Offer
Designing a PCB with precision is paramount to a product’s success because once the manufacturing process starts, the opportunity to correct any error or mistake is gone out of the window and recalling it will likely cost a fortune. This is why it is recommended that you use software such as Altium 18 for handling the designing aspect as it has all the good features one should expect from a competent PCB design software.
Now the question is what are those features that you should be looking for in the first place?
Big and Growing Content Library
Altium 18 is a designer software that’s famous for having a rich and huge content library that is still expanding, and it is something that is expected of every decent PCB designer worth using. As manufacturers keep adding and updating their components to the library, you will stay updated with all the necessary information regarding the components from the library itself.
Complete Control Over Editing
Not only is it important that your software offers you the features necessary for having complete control over editing the design, it is also important that the user interface of the tools you are using is intuitive. Take a note of the editing features mentioned below to know what you should expect.
- Centralized component management
- The autorouter engine should most certainly be there, although depending too heavily on them is not recommended.
- You should be able to initiate rule-driven routing from the interface
- A history cache to trace back steps and detect errors
- 3D simulation to detect and comb out errors
Quality Customer Support
It doesn’t matter how intuitive the software is, if you have not used it before, chances are that you will need some help to find an option or two quicker. In fact, a quick chat with a company representative who is familiar with how the software works might even be able to help you find new ways to solve your current problems or maybe even find a better way to route. So, make sure that the software in question guarantees you professional support whenever you need it.
It might be called a demo or a free trial, but whatever they are calling it, it is a sign that the company is confident in its product. Also, it gives you the chance to test out and see if the designing software is appropriate for the type of products you are planning to design. Even a 15-day trial is usually more than enough to know if it’s something that you can work with, so insist on that while choosing a PCB designer.
Altium 18 is one of those rare gems in the PCB designing software industry that has all the necessary features ticked, but it also has a huge number of other more enhanced features for those that can make the best of them. Examples include Real-time BOM Management and Seamless PCB Documentation Process among others. Whatever you choose, do make sure that what you are getting has the tools you really need.