Hi Dennis,

Pads is the generic name for several of their incarnations. It started as Pads-PCB, and then there was Pads-Work and a higher level options package called Pads-Perform. They got bought by Innoveda about the same time PowerPCB came out. Recently Pads got bought by Mentor Graphics as a new version has come out called BlazeRoute. PowerPCB still exists for more manual type of routing features and Blaze for more autorouting type of features..

Protel is a little easier in making SMD footprints. Pads does have attribute fields to have part information.

Copper pour works very well in Pads compared to Protel. Yes planes do have conductive lines.

DRC does work well in Pads and I think is much faster than Protel.

Pads does have a 30 day evaluatrion package if you want to try it out. There is also a good Pads listserver.

Mark

At 08:13 AM 7/11/2003, you wrote:
thanks John and others for your thoughtful comments

how easy is the creation of footprints in PADs ?
(the proper name for the current version is PowerPCB ?  5.0?)

when making SMD footprints can you do it from a data sheet without
having a calculator in hand?

can you make useful descriptions or comments in some footprint field?

how is their copper pour?

can you draw conductive lines on genuine planes?

and lastly :) what about their DRC ? does it work?

thanks again

Dennis Saputelli


John Ross wrote:
>
> Dennis
>
> I use Pads V5 here and the extra features indicated to you do exist in Pads
> (although I think the Pads features are over emphasised a bit by your
> manager to make his point).
>
> Mostly when people mention Pads they forget that PowerPCB (aka Pads) is
> typically only a back end.
>
> Options for capture are PowerLogic or (other Mentor offerings) you CAN use
> Protel (and your retained skills/investment on the tools)
>
> Pads is most definitely not, the solution to all things to all people. But
> Pads, like everything else has its own set of bugs, hidden nasties and
> caveats which you do not want to be landed with on Friday afternoon at
> 4.00pm! PowerLogic is a lump of junk and its database is not compatible with
> any other tools (except their own).
>
> Most things will take the same time in Pads that it will in Protel. So no
> productivity gains, in fact a penalty in having to learn Pads again.
>
> But if you need to have a dense board auto routed or need to do some rip
> up/relay on a dense board then you will save time by using Pads/blaze,
> including training time, over the time spend to struggle with Protel auto
> router or cleanup afterwards as the 99SE/DXP offerings are no where near as
> efficient as Blaze.
>
> You can always save the pads file back to V3.5 and open in Protel later if
> you wish.
>
> Protels capture front end is one of the easiest to use I have ever come
> across (exception is Ulticap now owned by EWB), and has came miles in
> development with the introduction of DXP. The layout tools in Protel are
> good.
>
> As I mentioned in the DXP lists, I use 2 sets of back end tools, Protel and
> Pads depending on board complexity and real estate. But I use the same
> front-end, Protel, as a lot of clients supply me designs in Orcad which I
> can open in Protel but not in PowerLogic. The decision at netlist time over
> which tool I should use to be productive is back under my control (most of
> the time :-) )
>
> My hope for an 'all doing' front end for both sets of back-end tools lies
> with nVisage (DXP) but the nVisage=>PowerPCB netlist formatter still has a
> bit to go yet....
>
> Hope some of these hastily gathered comments is of some help.
>
> Best Regards
>
> John A. Ross
>
> RSD Communications Ltd
> 8 BorrowMeadow Road
> Springkerse Industrial Estate
> Stirling, Scotland FK7 7UW
>
> Tel +44 [0]1786 450572 Ext 225 (Office)
> Tel +44 [0]1786 450572 Ext 248 (Lab)
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>
> Email [EMAIL PROTECTED]
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> ==========================================
>
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: Dennis Saputelli [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >Sent: Thursday, July 10, 2003 4:52 PM
> >To: Protel EDA Forum
> >Subject: Re: [PEDA] PADS ?
> >
> >we are about to embark on a large project for an outside
> >customer (second spin, one year in rev, 16 layers, yada yada)
> >
> >we will be using 99SE and probably spectra
> >
> >in talking with the manager (a very smart fellow BTW)
> >at our customer's place he said: 'I HATE Protel!' quite vigorously
> >i said "Oh?" (pretty diplomatic i thought)
> >
> >he said he watches his people tediously draw track segments and
> >then when they have to move something, rip it up and re-draw everything
> >segment by segment 'very primitive' as he put it
> >
> >he then went on to say that he used to do this stuff and he used PADs
> >
> >he said with PADS he could pick up a fully routed and fanned
> >out QFP and plop it somewhere else all the traces would remain attached and
> >reroute themselves around obstacles very fast and easy he claimed, like a
> >mini-manual-autorouter
> >
> >anybody know about this or have experience with newer
> >versions of PADS ? my last look at it was probably in the 70's :)
> >
> >As DXP does not seem to offer any productivity gains which i
> >can see we may be looking for another package
> >
> >
> >Dennis Saputelli
> >
> > ========= send only plain text please! - no HTML ==========
>
> _________________________________________________________________
> Get Hotmail on your mobile phone http://www.msn.co.uk/msnmobile


--
Dennis Saputelli

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Mark Iams-McGuire Master CAD Designs 13222 Hidden Valley Road Grass Valley, CA 95949 phone: 530-271-7078 fax: 530-271-7088



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