Software for pcb design

Discussion in 'Embedded Systems and Microcontrollers' started by urb-nurd, Apr 5, 2015.

  1. urb-nurd

    Thread Starter Member

    Jul 9, 2014
    269
    3
    For a school project i am trying to use ORCAD capture lite 16.6 but i am failing to get the parts that i need through the online parts databse.

    Are there any alternatives to this software?

    I have seen proteus, however this is not free.

    Thanks
     
  2. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
    10,515
    2,369
    I have gone over to using free Kicad, they have a very good parts selection and other schematic components and footprints are easy to design, either from scratch or modify the existing.
    There is also FreePCB that looks quite good.
    Kicad has quite a few tutorials also.
    Max.
     
  3. urb-nurd

    Thread Starter Member

    Jul 9, 2014
    269
    3
    Thanks for the info Max.

    I only need this to compose the schematic of an embedded system for a piece of university coursework.

    So i basically need to be able to compose a schematic with component footprints in a rapid a fashion as possible.

    I assume Kicad is ok for this?
     
  4. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
    10,515
    2,369
    Yes, it is is divided into three, Schematic capture, Assign Netlist, and PCB layout.
    So you would just need to use the first.
    Max.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2015
  5. urb-nurd

    Thread Starter Member

    Jul 9, 2014
    269
    3
    sounds ideal, ill get on it.

    Thanks!
     
  6. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
    10,515
    2,369
    Footprints and Modules usually refer to PCB physical shapes.
    Schematics usually refer to 'Component' pin out drawings.
    Max.
     
  7. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    7,386
    1,605
    From someone who has worked with both ORCAD and Kicad I would have to say it is essentially a very similar process in steps and time to "compose a schematic with component footprints in a rapid a fashion as possible."

    Orcad does have an extra tool to create pad shapes that Kicad integrates into the footprint portion, but the same steps are needed in either.

    So if you are already somewhat familiar with Orcad then just read the manual to learn how to create symbols and footprints. If you jump to Kicad you are tossing whatever you have already learned about Orcad.
     
  8. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
    2,428
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    I never cared much for Kicad, but that was just a personal preference. I've tried a wide variety of schematic/PCB capture programs (both free and not). My favorite free one is Eagle, which I used for all of my projects until I got Altium. Altium is FAR more powerful, yet it also costs quite a bit.

    You should try a bunch yourself and see which you prefer. Here's a list of a few of them:

    ExpressPCB/ExpressSCH
    FreePCB
    KiCAD
    Eagle
    DIPTrace
    PCB123
    DesignSpark
     
  9. figimigi

    New Member

    Apr 15, 2013
    2
    0
    Maybe RIMU will be OK for you.
     
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