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Topic: Newbie question on designing your own 'board' instead of using wires (Read 5 times) previous topic - next topic

danb35

Another option is DIPTrace.  Like Eagle, there's a limited free version available.  Unlike Eagle, though, the limitation is based on number of pins (300 or 500 pins in the free version), not board size.  Versions are available for Windows and Mac, though the Mac version is just running in WINE.  It works, but it's not very Mac-like.  There's also a detailed PDF tutorial you can download/print.  http://www.diptrace.com/ for more info.

CrossRoads

"The solder mask should take care of this, shouldn't it?"
You would think. I just like to give myself more margin when hand soldering based on what experience has shown of my capabilities.
I know the standard Atmega2560 couldn't be masked by itead, had to make the pads a little narrower so solder mask would go in between.
Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years. Check out the ATMega1284P based Bobuino and other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  www.crossroadsfencing.com/BobuinoRev17.
Arduino for Teens available at Amazon.com.

FireSlash

The solder mask should take care of this, shouldn't it?

Eagle has a default 4mm spacing on the solder masks of all pads. you can reduce or remove this in the DRC rules. Then if a trace runs between narrow SMD pads it should be fully masked so there shouldn't be any issues.

CrossRoads

I use Eagle for all my PCB design, for 2 years now, currently with 6.2.
I find that with attention to parts placement, I can let it autoroute and it does a pretty good job with 2 layers, even with complex designs, usually just needing some vias named GND to connect the top & bottom ground polygons together, and sometimes tweaking trace routing by hand to let the ground polygon fill in places it couldn't reach otherwise.
The iteadstudio DRC & CAM files work well for making sure boards can be made, down to 8mil trace width with 8mil clearance if desired. I usually go with 10mil for traces, 12 mil for vias and 24 (or wider) for power.
One thing that is a gotcha sometimes is having the trace width too wide and then it cannot connect to an SMD pad, usually for power.
I also put restricted area between narrower SMD pads (like FT232 and ATMega2560) to help prevent solder bridging.
Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years. Check out the ATMega1284P based Bobuino and other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  www.crossroadsfencing.com/BobuinoRev17.
Arduino for Teens available at Amazon.com.

vasquo

Quote
The Only thing that Eagle has going is the price..  A Full Seat  (all the Bells and Whistles) is less than $2K/Yr where an Atium Full seat is $6K/Yr @ $325/Mo.... Min 12 mo.


Eagle has a one-time purchase price. I have the pro commercial version, $1K for the schem and pcb module (no need for autorouter) - purchased about 5 years ago. I do NOT have to pay $1K every year.

While the other software, as you say, is $2K, $6K PER YEAR.... OrCad is $10K (not sure though if this is subscription or one-time).

In the end, everything ends up being a gerber file.

If the project works, that's the most important thing. 

There are some "stupid" and "quirky" things I hate about Eagle... my experience being coming from AutoCAD (though I didn't use AutoCAD for PCB design).

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