best electronics schematic program for noobe

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VernonLS

Joined Oct 9, 2019
42
What is the best/easiest to learn/low cost/free electronics cad program for beginners to use. I have been using Visio just because I own it, but it often gets lost simply trying to connect wires and it has no component library. I have tried Eagle, but it is way, way more than I need and the guy who does the tutorial should be shot because he talks so slow that I fall asleep. I have also tried EasyEDA and it has some really nice features, but it can't handle changing the drawing size or printing it larger or smaller mostly because it all about physical components, not electronics. I also tried ProfiCAD, but found it severely limiting. So far the best and easiest to learn one I have found is CircuitLab, but the trial period ends quickly and I just can't justify spending $16 - $30 a month for my hobby. I don't care about PCB layout as I am only building hobby boards, not manufacturing a product. I would like to have a library of common IC parts, relays, common symbols, etc. Simulation is nice, but a must-have.

Easy to learn is high on my list of desires, able to handle complex designs is low. Hope others will share their favorites.
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
9,331
I tried a couple of programs before I settled on Eagle. I don't know why people claim Eagle is difficult to learn. I didn't find that to be the case.

That being said, I don't like the new versions of Eagle that require an account. I use a very old version and don't care for most of the "improvements" they've made. There's one that I'd like (more flexible overbar in annotations), but I can live without the rest.

KiCad shows up often in these "best" queries. I thought about checking it out, but something (I think the download size) discouraged me.
 

ebeowulf17

Joined Aug 12, 2014
2,960
I'm a huge fan of DipTrace. I think it's roughly the same capabilities as Eagle, it's free, and it does everything I've ever needed it to. I'm one of the people who thought Eagle was difficult and horribly counter intuitive. Learning DipTrace was really very easy by comparison. Of course, we all have different learning styles and workflow preferences, but that was my experience.
 

djsfantasi

Joined Apr 11, 2010
5,838
There is a program named ExpressSch which is free and easy to use. However, if you’re going to make a PCB, it only works with their service, ExpressPCB.

I’m migrating to DipTrace now
 
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