gmseed
Posts: 35
Joined: Sat Aug 29, 2015 7:16 pm

PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Wed Sep 30, 2015 5:00 pm

Hi

So, I've got my RPi2, got my breadboard circuit working, written my Java program using Pi4J.

Now, I want to make a professional PCB. I've looked at both Eagle and DesignSpark, which both look a bit involved and a long learning curve. With DesignSpark I couldn't even find a 40 pin connector as yet, but I'll keep looking!

I'm curious what other people use for small circuit layouts.

Thanks
Graham

Massi
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Joined: Fri May 02, 2014 1:52 pm
Location: Italy

Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Wed Sep 30, 2015 5:21 pm

have you checked this?
http://fritzing.org/home/

hampi
Posts: 223
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Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Wed Sep 30, 2015 7:28 pm


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jbeale
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Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Wed Sep 30, 2015 7:45 pm

I just submitted a board for fab that I designed using KiCad 4.0 and it is a very powerful program, it can do almost anything but there is definitely a learning curve to it! (Specifically setup of schematic symbol libraries and PCB footprint or "module" libraries; I found the rest pretty intuitive.) Fortunately there is a responsive user forum at https://forum.kicad.info/

I had a small 2-sided board, 1.2 x 1.0 inches in size, and the total price from OSH Park for 3 pieces was only $6.05 including shipping! I was amazed that I can get a real PCB made for the price of a sandwich. Cost goes up with area of the board, of course. At my last day job our PCB vendor had a minimum price of $500 regardless of board size. You can find the cheapest options at http://pcbshopper.com/ and quality varies a bit, but from all I've read, for basic stuff all the vendors are "good enough".

doppler
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon May 25, 2015 5:53 pm

Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:12 pm

Full blown PCB software suite. All free to use. Only a small catch.
Any PCB made is open source and you must join the forum. All designs using the software is made available to
everybody in the forum. AKA: Not to be used for work.

www.circuitmaker.com

DavidMS
Posts: 139
Joined: Fri May 25, 2012 8:48 pm
Contact: Website

Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:42 pm

I would certainly give Eagle a try - as the part libraries on the web are very extensive.

Worth looking at https://github.com/adafruit/Adafruit-Eagle-Library

and specifically you should find the following part in there - PINHD-2x20

When it comes to getting your PCB made have a look at Ragworm http://www.ragworm.eu/ they have a very easy to use service for 'few off PCBs' which is great for people new to PCBs, I have used them a few times and not been disappointed.
http://meanderingpi.wordpress.com/
11 Raspberry Pi's and counting....

ame
Posts: 3172
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2012 1:21 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Wed Sep 30, 2015 10:07 pm

Kicad.

All the others are restricted or encumbered in some way.

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TonyD
Posts: 450
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Location: Newcastle, UK
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Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Thu Oct 01, 2015 12:12 pm

I found DesignSparkto be one of the easier packages to use. It doesn't have any size or layer restrictions and can be used for commercial use unlike the free version of EagleCad, which is why I swapped from Eagle to it.

I've used it to create a lot of add-on boards for the Pi and other things as well. You can check out some of my Pi board designs here and here. If you need some library parts to get you started drop me a PM.
Tony

ame
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Location: New Zealand

Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Thu Oct 01, 2015 12:32 pm

TonyD wrote:I found DesignSparkto be one of the easier packages to use. It doesn't have any size or layer restrictions and can be used for commercial use unlike the free version of EagleCad, which is why I swapped from Eagle to it.

I've used it to create a lot of add-on boards for the Pi and other things as well. You can check out some of my Pi board designs here and here. If you need some library parts to get you started drop me a PM.
It's not cross-platform, but it does seem that it will run under Wine. Kicad is cross platform (and will run natively on the Pi. Maybe a bit slowly).

gmseed
Posts: 35
Joined: Sat Aug 29, 2015 7:16 pm

Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Thu Oct 01, 2015 2:08 pm

Thanks for all your advice and suggestions.

I think I'm going to go for KICAD. Installed the latest nightly build and just worked my way through the Getting Started tutorial, which is pretty good and as jbeale noted the forum appears active.

I found it really easy to generate new components that aren't listed in the stock library.

Thanks
Graham

texy
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Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Thu Oct 01, 2015 2:37 pm

Eagle for me. When I first started using it, around 12 years ago, it was the electronic hackers choice - plenty of tutorials and examples. So I just continued with it, no point in fixing something that isn't broke.
However it may not be the best choice if you need to start from scratch, but everyone will tell you the one they use is 'the best' :lol:

Texy
Various male/female 40- and 26-way GPIO header for sale here ( IDEAL FOR YOUR PiZero ):
https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=93&t=147682#p971555

James1208
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2018 2:20 am

Re: PCB Board Layout/Design Software

Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:46 am

I had a small 2-sided board, 1.2 x 1.0 inches in size, and the total price from OSH Park for 3 pieces was only $6.05 including shipping! I was amazed that I can get a real PCB made for the price of a sandwich. Cost goes up with area of the board, of course. At my last day job our PCB vendor had a minimum price of $500 regardless of board size and quality varies a bit, but from all I've read, for basic stuff all the vendors are "good enough".

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