I would whole heartily agree with you.
There was a CAD system VeriBest that was based on Bentley's
MicroStation and therefor needed it to run, there was two editors
the PCB side and the drafting side, and yes one could say that
there was great power in that combination, however the PCB  side was never
quite the PCB package it should have been due to the limitations and
controls of MicroStation. It was very cumbersome to deal with the two
You were stuck using both no matter what to do certain functions to complete
a design.
It was another company and for Bentley to change MicroStation
just for VeriBest was not in the cards. Thus when they removed MicroStation
it ultimately became a very good PCB tool, on its own, now Mentor owns them.
Also there were just as many who wanted Microstation as those who didn't, so
you can't
please everyone.
That being said I would agree to leave the EDA tools to do what a
EDA tools should do, and provide proper export and import to the appropriate
to do mechanical drawing, checking etc. Translations are always fraught with
some problems
too but there are a few reasonably good standards out there to provide
interface to these other tools provided the EDA CAD vendor implements them
I guess the one downside is you need to purchase and learn other programs,
but if one really wants
or needs a good drafting package one should buy and learn one.
We should not forget though that an EDA package should however provide at
least a minimum capability to output minimum sufficient documentation to
fab, assemble and test a board.
May not be the way you want the documentation, but none the less any fab
house etc should be able to produce a board with it.
Or that really is like buying the car without tires.
I really don't expect my EDA package to be a full blown 2D/3D/Finite
Analysis package. It is nice to be able to simply view it though also.
I do wish though Protel had a little better dimensioning capabilty though.

Robert M. Wolfe, C.I.D.
----- Original Message -----
To: "Protel EDA Forum" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Sent: Thursday, February 07, 2002 12:49 PM
Subject: Re: [PEDA] Re[3]: View PCB 3D

> Brad,
> I understand the sentiment of the Protel viewer by others in the forum. I
> suppose the point that I am trying to make it that Protel is an EDA tool
> a 3D CAD package. I don't expect it to be. I use it for what it is
> not for what is not intended. Ergo, I use the 3D export utility and change
> programs to complete my intention. Similarily, I would not wear a
> to go SCUBA diving, nor vice versa.  Protel is an EDA package, don't
> it to do your mechanical work. It provides a near useless 3D viewer, yes,
> but if this propagates the usage of another program to which the
> is seamless, then perhaps it has had some use after all. I digress, Protel
> should not expand the 3D viewers functionality, it should embed the export
> utility to a plethora of 3D programs and/or generic transform genres.
> IGES etc..
> Regards,
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Brad Velander [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]]
> Sent: Thursday, February 07, 2002 9:48 AM
> To: 'Protel EDA Forum'
> Subject: Re: [PEDA] Re[3]: View PCB 3D
> Hi Lloyd,
> your comments are very true for the Desktop-EDA package. However I
> think some of the points expressed were misunderstood. The 'Protel'
> is a toy with virtually no useful purpose. Protel needs to align
> with the industry and develop a true 3D mechanical interface (sorry forget
> the acronym) rather then a "viewer". The Protel viewer is useless,
> absolutely useless. Would ACAD, Solidworks or any other get away with a
> pretty viewer in their products, no you need output suitably formatted for
> inclusion in the next level of development tools? Showing a pretty picture
> (even one with user defined models) serves no measurable useful purpose.
> This is what I think some of the other posters have been trying to say.
> Qual-ECAD or Desktop-EDA tools are a proper path for 3D development, not a
> simple Protel viewer.
> Sincerely,
> Brad Velander.
> Lead PCB Designer
> Norsat International Inc.
> Microwave Products
> Tel   (604) 292-9089 (direct line)
> Fax  (604) 292-9010
> http://www.norsat.com
> See us at Booth 323 at Satellite 2002 in Washington, DC March 6-8.
> >snip

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