Well, I've got 2 (euro)cents to spare:

I'd settle for footprint definitions in DXF, preferably also showing the paste mask and component outline.

That would already make a huge difference in work when defining a library component, with virtually no extra effort on the manufacturer side. I mean, they probably designed the mechanics of the component too, so they must have that information in some sort of CAD system (and what CAD system doesn't export DXF? virtually none..)

After spending considerable time de- and refining a DIN41612C96 footprint by manually entering the data from the manufacturers' datasheet (and ending up with a less-than-perfect footprint) I stumbled upon their DXF drawings.
I imported them in a scratch PCB file, stripped all unnecessary information, added the pads on the positions indicated and then copy-pasted the whole thing to the PCB library (P99SE you know). The whole process took no longer than the manual definition even though it was the first time I tried this procedure; the result not only looks great but is stunningly accurate...


Calculating SMT footprints can be quite laborious as the datasheet-supplied measurements often need serious work: calculating that needed-but-not-supplied dimension, (re-)calculating tolerances and offsets etc.
The online SMT footprint calculator from IPC asks for numbers that are often not in the datasheets but are required to complete the calculation of the footprint....
Calculating the footprint yourself also requires knowledge of the PCB stuffing and soldering techniques that will be used later on.... And even then, some footprints cannot be calculated (but that might be my misunderstanding of the mathematics involved ;).




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