Free PCB Design Software

Discussion in 'Electronics Resources' started by CVMichael, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. CVMichael

    Thread Starter Senior Member

    Aug 3, 2007
    416
    17
    A few days ago I saw a post with a link to a free PCB design software, but of course I did not bookmark it...

    I tried to search for it, for like an hour, and I could not find it... (not the one I saw a few days ago)

    Anyways...

    What are good and free PCB design (and schematic design also if possible) software ?
     
  2. bertus

    Administrator

    Apr 5, 2008
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  3. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
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  4. CVMichael

    Thread Starter Senior Member

    Aug 3, 2007
    416
    17
    Thank You both

    FreePCB is what I was looking for, but the other links are good too...
     
  5. John Luciani

    Active Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    477
    0
    Be careful of "free" PCB design software that lock you into a particular
    vendor. I would look for a package that can output gerber files that could be
    sent to any vendor.

    Check out gEDA/PCB. My gEDA/PCB and parts library are at

    http://www.luciani.org/geda/geda-index.html

    (* jcl *)
     
  6. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
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    I'm not aware of FreePCB being recommended here on AAC - a quick forum search shows that cumesoftware recommended it once.

    I'll have a look at it and if need be add it to the list, which I will make public.

    Dave
     
  7. bestfpc

    New Member

    Apr 16, 2009
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    Normally, we use CAM350 to design and make manufacturing files for FPC, here in China, mainland.
     
  8. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
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    By the looks of it CAM350 isn't free.

    Dave
     
  9. electronictech

    Active Member

    Apr 1, 2009
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    I have always used Traxmaker3, which can easily be found via bit-torrent(it is a small download, and will easily run on older machines). It can use libraries from Protel and a couple of other PCB-CAD programs, so you can have a wide selection of footprints... besides, the component editor is easy to use so you can make your own footprints quickly. Layer wise, I think it will support up to 8. It also allows you to create GERBER files of your work, so you can send your design to any board house of your choice.

    The only other PCB-CAD program that I've come across that was as intuitive as Traxmaker was expressPCB, which is vendor specific. The only thing I don't like about expressPCB, is when you zoom into a footprint the pads are not numerically labeled (or I haven't figured out how to enable that feature, if it exists).

    Anyways, have fun!
     
  10. bertus

    Administrator

    Apr 5, 2008
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    Hello,

    It seems that the maket of Traxmaker (microcode) does not exist any more.
    The website is "dead".

    Greetings,
    Bertus

    PS much software found in bit-torrents is illegal.
     
  11. lqyromeo

    New Member

    Oct 28, 2008
    8
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    Oh, dear, i also need free one, but still looking for it
     
  12. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    I did not see EAGLE mentioned in the foregoing thread. A free version can be downloaded at www.cadsoft.de.

    John
     
  13. AlexR

    Well-Known Member

    Jan 16, 2008
    735
    54
    FreePCB works for me. Its open-source completely free and not crippled in any way.
    It does however need to be teamed up with a circuit drawing package. TinyCad works well, exports circuits in a format that FreePCB can read and is also free, open-source, and uncrippled.
     
  14. yasir9909

    New Member

    May 22, 2008
    3
    0
    I think you should try CADsoft Eagle.It is a freeware with some limited features.
    It is a good and easy to learn PCB designing software.Full version that is not free may have much more features than freeware.Still,freeware is good for hobbyists and beginners.
    Freeware has following limitations:

    1. PCB size is limited to approximately 3X4 square inch.
    2. schematic is limited to only one sheet
    3. only two layer PCB may be designed

    You may downlaod the freeware from the following link:

    http://www.cadsoftusa.com/

    regards
    m.yasir
     
  15. yasir9909

    New Member

    May 22, 2008
    3
    0
    Personally i like Protel Dxp (Altium designer).I think, it is much more powerful than CADsoft Eagle,it is a complete package including Ciruit simulation,schematic and PCB design.
    But,i think,this is not a freeware.However,it's cracked versions may be searched on the internet.
     
  16. bobbyrae

    Active Member

    May 14, 2009
    42
    1
    I was at Futurlec and downloaded some software called PCB Artist. It will automatically turn the schematic into a PCB layout. Sometimes it needs some help! I've been using it a little and it works OK once you get used to it. My current complaint is that it shows resistors as rectangles rather than the usual set of diagonal lines.
     
  17. bobbyrae

    Active Member

    May 14, 2009
    42
    1
    Actually I was at Advanced Cicuits (www.4pcb.com) to get the software. The PCB mfg prices are much better at Futurlec. So I thought I would use the software from one site and buy from the other.
     
  18. nigelwright7557

    Senior Member

    May 10, 2008
    487
    71
    I have yet to find a good free PCB design package.

    It costs huge amounts of money to write pcb design software properly.

    Also, there is never any support for free pcb design packages.
     
  19. Khalid-H

    New Member

    Mar 10, 2009
    1
    0
    What do you guys think about PCB123? It is free, I have never tried it before but I am planning to download it and learn how to use it for a project I am doing. Any comments regarding the software?
     
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