PADS Desktop PCB Design

Discussions on the present, future capabilities and value of the PADS PCB flow.

8 April, 2015

This FREE BeagleBone Black data provides the hobbyist/maker community and beyond with PADS reference design data to work with, take from and build up to make your own designs!

DOWNLOAD NOW!

PADS0025_ALLPADS0025_SCH2

The reference design includes 19 files including:

  • Schematic design in xDX Designer format (.prj)
  • Layout design in PADS 9.5 format (.pcb)
  • Bill of Materials for the design ( Bill of Materials.html)
  • PDF of the schematic design ( (Schematic).pdf)
  • PDF of the layout design ( (Layout).pdf)
  • Property definitions file (netlist.prp)
  • PCB Configuration file (pads95.cfg)
  • Schematic symbols,  land patterns, and more!

DK_BLOG

Explore  all 24 Reference Designs HERE:  Designs can be used with our new inexpensive (PADS based) Designer Schematic and Designer Layout tools now available for the hobbyist/maker community HERE from Digikey as well as our desktop PADS products.

Thanks for reading,

John

19 March, 2015

In the 4th of this 4 part whitepaper series dedicated to CAD library quality, we’ll describe each aspect to consider when creating QFN (Quad Flat No-Lead) component library parts. It also describes the impact each feature has in the PCB process.blog image 1

The QFN component family includes the QFN and PQFNs with pullback leads. This paper discusses everything from the land sizes for both lead types to the placement courtyard and routing schemes to consider for different technology and density levels.

blog image 2Click here to access this QFN Whitepaper now.

Download Part 1 of this white paper series dedicated to the creation of Molded Body components by Clicking here

Click here to download Part 2 that covers the  Small Outline Transistor (SOT)  components.

Click here to download Part 3 covering BGAs.

To learn more about the xDM Land Pattern Creator Click here. And to learn more about Library Management, Click here!

Thanks for reading!

John

11 March, 2015

In part 3 of this a 4 part whitepaper series dedicated to CAD library quality, we’ll describe each aspect to consider when creating BGA (Ball Grid Array) component library parts. It also describes the impact each feature has in the PCB process.

BGA

The BGA component family includes both collapsing and non-collapsing balls. This paper discusses everything from the land sizes for both ball types to the placement courtyard to consider for different technology and density levels.

WP pageClick here to access the BGA Whitepaper now.

You can download Part 1 of this white paper series dedicated to the creation of Molded Body components by Clicking here and Part 2 that covers the  Small Outline Transistor (SOT)  components.

To learn more about the xDM Land Pattern Creator Click here

And to learn more about Library Management, Click here!

Thanks for reading,  and be on the lookout for Part #4: QFP Components soon!

John

4 March, 2015

In part 2 of this 4 part  CAD library white paper series we cover  Small Outline Transistor (SOT)  components.

As mentioned in Part 1 of this series that focused on Molded Body components, there are dozens of different things to consider when creating a CAD library including the precision of the part placement, via fanout, trace routing, post processing, fabrication and assembly processes.

SOT 1thru4

This CAD library whitepaper is the second in this series and is dedicated to each aspect that should be considered when creating Small Outline Transistor (SOT) library parts. It also describes the impact each feature has in the PCB process.

The SOT component family includes several package types: the flat lead SOTFL, the SOT23’s in 3, 5, 6 and 8 gull wing lead packages, the SOT143 and 343 packages and the SOT 223. This paper discusses everything from the package types to the silkscreen, and from the placement courtyard to via fanout examples.

WP page sampleClick here to access the SOT Whitepaper now.

You can download Part 1 of this white paper series dedicated to the creation of Molded Body components by Clicking here.

Click here to learn more about the xDM Land Pattern Creator

And to learn more about Library Management, Click here!

Thanks for reading,  and be on the lookout for Part #3: BGA Components soon!

John

24 February, 2015

The CAD Library White Paper Series: Part 1 – Molded Body PartsxDX Molded

The CAD library is the starting point that affects every process from PCB layout through PCB manufacturing and assembly. There are dozens of things to consider when creating a CAD library. Each can directly affect the quality of the part placement, via fanout, trace routing, post processing, fabrication and assembly processes. Yet, they are often overlooked.

This CAD library whitepaper, the first in a series dedicated to CAD library quality, describes each aspect you should consider when creating Molded Body Component library parts. It also describes the impact each feature has in the PCB process.

WP Front pageFrom polarized and non-polarized capacitors to fuses, diodes, inductors and resistors, this paper covers the in’s and outs of one of the most-popular component families on a PCB design layout. This paper discusses everything from the package types to the silkscreen, and from the placement courtyard to via fanout examples.

Click here to access the Whitepaper now.

Click here to learn more about the xDM Land Pattern Creator

And to learn more about Library Management, Click here!

Thanks for reading,  and be on the lookout for Part #2: SOT Components soon!

John

23 January, 2015

New Designer premium editions with unlimited connections are now available on DigiKey.com! Thats right!, our EDN 2014 “Hot 100″ award winning Designer professional design tools, based on xDX Designer and PADS Layout for engineers are now offered in both 1500 and unlimited connection editions.Top100_Designer Designer products seamlessly integrate with PartQuest, a new component research engine tied directly to Digi-Key’s website of over 4 million parts. PartQuest allows engineers to parametrically search for parts to use in their designs. Over 350K Digi-Key parts have EDA data with them – the schematic symbol and PCB footprint, which will be downloaded directly into the Designer Schematic and Designer Layout libraries for immediate use to speed up design starts. PartQuest will also provide access to reference designs for download and use.

To learn more about Designer products visit the product page on Digi-Key.com.

Thanks for reading!

John

14 January, 2015

Cool Earth Solar designs and develops solar products to reduce the world’s dependence on fossil fuels. The company has created a scalable, low-cost solution to develop industrial power plants using concentrated photovoltaic technology. “We strive to reduce the most expensive part of the solar collector — the solar cell itself,” says Scott French, Senior Electrical Engineer, “by increasing the power output from the cell.”

cool_earth_solar

French uses PADS to develop monitoring and communications hardware used for a solar tracker — an electromechanical system used to track the sun, monitor output, and process and transmit data. Scott appreciates how productive a designer can be in PADS. “When I want to do something, it’s easy to do. It’s not always easy in other tools.”

Click below to read the full story on how Scott French at Cool Earth Solar relies on the ease of use, tool advancements and the power of PADS to meet design requirements and save time!

To try PADS for yourself, click here.

downloadThanks for reading !

John

5 January, 2015

6keysLong gone are the days of manually backing up and archiving PCB design data or running scripts or routines that bundle-up a targeted set of design files in a time-stamped zip file. Proper archives are essential, not only to back up design data but to manage, share and leverage the design data as well. The latest design archiving tools provide a powerful design-driven storage methodology that not only promotes effective data backups, but also increases productivity by efficiently creating, indexing and restoring design archives within the vault.

In my recent article in Printed Circuit Design & Fab. entitled Beyond the Vault: The Evolution of PCB Design Archiving I discuss these 6 key areas of functionality for modern design archiving:

1. 1keyNeed to easily store all design data.

2. key2Ability to perform what-if? scenario testing.

3. key3Bidirectional cross-probing capabilities.

4. key4Need to accommodate collaborative design reviews.

5. key5Support for design cloning to create design templates for new PCBs or the next generation of the legacy design.

6. key6Full design reporting capabilities.

You can learn more about archive management with PADS Design Archive in this white paper entitled: Design Control, Data and Comparison with PADS Archive Management. Additionally, you can watch this on-demand web seminar entitled Beyond the Vault: Introducing PADS Archive Management to learn more about the power of design-driven storage and how it addresses the entire PCB creation process.

Thanks for reading !    John

29 December, 2014

2014 glasses

2014 was a very busy and exciting year for PADS. Here is a look back at the top 3 PADS blog topics of 2014!

NEW – In 2014 the PADS.com website was launched. Now it is easier for everyone–from existing PADS users to interested explorers–to gain access to everything PADS!

www.PADS.com

PADS_com

NEW – PADS VX Release ! The PADS VX release brings the industry a complete approach to desktop PCB design, offering smarter productivity, higher quality, and greater speed and accuracy to individuals and small teams than ever before.

Including features like: New libraries and library tools for faster design starts. Easier schematic design with xDX Designer. Spreadsheet-based constraint management for increased productivity. Real-time notification of design changes. Automatic assignment of differential pairs. Color highlighting of design rule violations. Design archive with graphical and data comparisons and MUCH more!

PADS VX Release

PADS-VX-2014

NEW – Designer Schematic and Designer Layout design tools! The affordable professional design tools, based on xDX Designer and PADS Layout for engineers who need the quality of high-end PCB schematic capture and layout, but at a very affordable price. The Designer products seamlessly integrate with PartQuest, a new component research engine.

Designer Schematic, Designer Layout

Top100_Designer

Thanks for an incredible 2014 & there’s a LOT more to look forward to in 2015!

Wishing you all a very Happy and prosperous New Year !

John

18 December, 2014

The old saying is, “What you don’t know can’t hurt you.” Well, consider this story. I was teaching a schematic capture class and in that class were a number of people who had used the tool in question for six or more years. As I showed one really good feature, one of those people responded with, “If I had known that two weeks ago, I would have saved myself two days’ worth of work.” He had taught himself how to use the tool, and he could get the job done, but not knowing one little feature really did hurt his productivity.training_class

Mentor Graphics offers a wide range of PADS training to help you come up to speed, not just on the functionality of the tools, but also on the how and why of special features.   If you are simply the person doing schematic capture, if you are responsible for PCB layout, or if you have responsibilities in both areas, consider that training can help you be more aware of the how and the why of the use of your tool.

In the schematic capture world, there is a class on PADS Logic, the native schematic capture tool for use with PADS Layout. We also have a class on DxDesigner, targeted specifically for users who are taking designs into PADS Layout for PCB Layout. When registering for DxDesigner make sure you mention that you are using PADS Layout, so you can be directed to that class. There is also a specific DxDesigner class for customers using the recently released PADS VX Integrated flow into PADS Layout.

In the world of PADS layout, we offer the basic PADS layout class, for those who are just getting started or those who need to be more familiar with the basic usage of the tool.   There is also a one day PADS Layout Advanced class that deals with managing attributes, design reuse, split planes and more.

Probably the most neglected tool in the PADS Layout suite is the PADS Router. Many people think of it only as an autorouting environment and don’t understand the full functionality of that tool. We offer a two day class to help you be proficient not only in how to use the tool, but also how it can be a powerful benefit in your design tasks.

Check our PADS training offerings out at http://www.PADS.com/training. And if the current scheduled classes don’t meet your needs, contact us at http://www.PADS.com/training/request_new and let us help get you a few steps better in your PADS Layout skills.

Because, in the modern design world, what you don’t know really can hurt you.

Thanks for Reading!

Larry

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