All,

For those that might be trying the multichannel feature of DXP:  I just
learned the hard way (hours of fiddling) about a few confusing things with
the method.  The little bit of documentation in the "manual", Introducing
Protel DXP, creates a couple of misunderstandings that I could only resolve
by taking the 8-channel Mixer example apart.  So here are some lasting
impressions from the experience, in the order of points presented in the
manual.

First, when you place a Sheet Symbol and add the Repeat(CIN,1,8) style
Designator, DXP DOES NOT create a Sheet Symbol that looks like the one in
the Mixer example with multiple overlapping sheets.  These appear to be just
"artwork" added to the mixer schematic as rectangles for dramatic effect and
the example would better without them.  I know it is a minor point, but when
other things don't work as they probably will not, it left me thinking that
I hadn't declared something correctly to invoke the full power of the
repeat.  True, it is shown correctly in the manual diagram on page 6-2 but I
was hard to convince (for about an hour or so, much later, when trying to
get all to work by generating a netlist without error).

Second, the "technique" of representing the bus coming out of a Sheet Entry
symbol that has a Repeat as a single wire which then connects directly to a
bus, (so that individual signals can be picked out), is so crucial but not
obvious looking at the example diagram on page 6-2.  There is only a small
stub of bus wire connected to the Headphone wire in the picture and I
overlooked that for quite a while.

Third, it is possible to have the designators in the sheets incremented
sequentially as _1, _2, ..._n, by simply leaving out the first parameter of
the Designator Repeat() statement.  I think this will mean that the
technique of repeating channels on the circuit layout (assuming you route by
hand) by simply copying the first one multiple times should still produce
the same orderly incrementation of the designator in each channel.  But I
haven't verified this yet.

.end - of - rant.

regards,

Tim Hutcheson
Research Associate
Institute for Human and Machine Cognition
University of West Florida
40 S. Alcaniz St.
Pensacola, FL 32501
USA
805-202-4461


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