[volt-nuts] PC board layout software [WAS: HP-419...]

NeonJohn jgd at neon-john.com
Wed Dec 3 18:45:51 EST 2014

On 12/03/2014 05:46 PM, Charles Steinmetz wrote:
> Mark wrote:

> Why did they settle on 16x10 cm for the less expensive versions??  That
> seems pretty arbitrary, given that the "Professional" version supports
> boards 400x400 cm.  I gather 16x10 cm is a common Eurocard size, but I
> don't see why that would guide the limit.

Somewhere they say that it's half an Eurocard.

> I'd be interested to hear from users, whether partisan or neutral, who
> have recent experience with *both* packages (Eagle 6 or 7 *and* KiCAD
> 2013.07.07).

We have the Professional licenses.  As you say, the learning curve is
steep but once learned, I find myself surprisingly productive.  But the
autorouter is junk.  We bought one license but I never could get it
configured to do anything useful.

We have a LOT of IP tied up in Eagle's proprietary version 5 format.  We
upgraded to 6 and 7 but the conversion to the new XML splattered every
layout we threw at it so we demanded a refund and are still using V5.

The real catalyst for our move to KiCad was that after they'd collected
a bunch of upgrade fees, they announced that the new version would come
with copy protection.  The user base revolted and they backed down in a
little less than 6 weeks.  But lesson learned.

I'll keep a current unlicensed version installed so I can view what
others are doing but our involvement with Eagle is over.

I'm starting a new induction heater design next week using KiCAD.  I'll
occasionally report on how it's going.


John DeArmond
Tellico Plains, Occupied TN
http://www.fluxeon.com      <-- THE source for induction heaters
http://www.neon-john.com    <-- email from here
http://www.johndearmond.com <-- Best damned Blog on the net
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