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Comparison of Several Main PCB softwares

writer: G May 31, 2019

1. Protel, now push Altium Designer.

The mainstream of low-end design. Easy to learn, suitable for beginners, easy to get started; takes up more system resources and requires higher computer configuration.

Altium Designer Winter 09 offers the only unified application solution that combines all the necessary technologies and functions required for integrated electronics development. Altium Designer Winter 09 integrates board and FPGA system design, FPGA and discrete processor-based embedded software development, and PCB layout design, editing, and manufacturing in a single design environment. And integrated with modern design data management capabilities, Altium Designer Winter 09 is a complete solution for electronic product development - a solution that meets both current and future development needs.


The PADS software is also quite a lot of people, easy to use, easy to use. Suitable for low-end and mid-end designs. The most widely used EDA software on the market today is suitable for most small and medium-sized businesses. It does not have its own simulation. When doing high-speed boards, it must be combined with other special simulation tools, such as Hyperlynx.

PADS software is the schematic and PCB design tool software from Mentor Graphics. It is the most commonly used tool software for high-end users of PCB design. Mentor Graphics' PADS Layout/Router environment is the industry's leading PCB design platform, with its powerful interactive place and route functions and easy to learn and use, in the most active industrial fields such as communications, semiconductors, consumer electronics, medical electronics, etc. Has been widely used. PADS Layout/Router supports a complete PCB design flow, including import from schematic netlist, rule-driven interactive place and route, DRC/DFT/DFM verification and analysis, to the final production file (Gerber), assembly files And a full range of functional requirements, such as bill of materials (BOM) output, to ensure that PCB engineers can efficiently complete design tasks.

3. Cadence allegro

The actual industry standard in high speed board design. The PCB Layout tool is absolutely superb. After a little familiarity, you no longer want to use other tools, and the wiring is super cool. The simulation aspect is also very powerful, with its own simulation tools, signal integrity simulation, and power integrity simulation.

Cadence's Electronic Design Automation products cover the entire process of electronic design, including system level design, functional verification, IC synthesis and place and route, analog, mixed-signal and RF IC design, full custom IC design, IC Physical verification, PCB design and hardware simulation modeling.

The Cadence Allegro System Interconnect Platform enables high-performance interconnects to be designed across ICs, packages and PCBs. The application platform's collaborative design approach allows engineers to quickly optimize system interconnects between I/O buffers and across integrated circuits, packages, and PCBs. This approach avoids hardware rework and reduces hardware costs and design cycles. The constraint-driven Allegro process includes advanced features for design capture, signal integrity, and physical implementation. With its support from Cadence Encounter and the Virtuoso platform, Allegro's collaborative design approach makes efficient design chain collaboration a reality.

4. Mentor WG

Slightly inferior to CADENCE, but also a top-level tool for high-end circuit design, as well as its own simulation tools. However, its supporters in China are still relatively small, not as much as Cadence. It should be changed to the Mentor EE2009 version now.

Mentor WG is a PCB design tool for Mentor Graphics' work on the Windows NT/2000 platform. It covers the design process from design creation, layout layout to product processing, while enabling designers to perform schematic simulation, high-speed circuit analysis, board-level thermal analysis, library development and management.

Others are not mentioned, and there are very few people. If you rarely do high-speed boards, it is recommended to use PADS, after all, it is relatively easy to learn. If you are doing high-speed boards often, it is recommended to choose Cadence.

Board level circuit design system

Including schematic input, generation, analog digital / hybrid circuit simulation, FPGA design, PCB editing and automatic placement and routing MCM circuit design, high-speed PCB layout design simulation and so on.


* Concept HDL schematic design input tool for products for NT and for Unix.

* Check Plus HDL schematic design rule checking tool. (NT & Unix)

* SPECTRA Quest Engineer PCB layout planning tool (NT & Unix)

* Allegro Expert Expert PCB Layout Editing Tool (NT & Unix)

* SPECTRA Expert AutoRouter expert pcb automatic routing tool

* SigNoise signal to noise analysis tool

* EMControl electromagnetic compatibility check tool

* Synplify FPGA / CPLD synthesis tool

* HDL Analyst HDL Analyzer

* Advanced Package Designer advanced MCM package design tool

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