I use Protel & PADS, and also Orcad to a smaller extent. Specctra too.

The thing you cannot ignore is the fact that you have people who are used to using a particular CAD. Are they willing to change? If not, it does not matter if you choose the perfect CAD, if they do not learn it and use it, all will be wasted. I have experienced this problem and seen it happen at other companies.

Do not ignore support. I like the fact that Altium experts answer your questions online. Their Knowledge base gets better every week. And you sure can't complain about the price of support. PADS is good too, although I'm wondering if it will continue to be under Mentor. Both Cadence & Mentor want an arm and a leg for support, and you get very little in return IMO. Learning Protel is much more difficult than PADS IMO, if you have many people who will be new or use infrequently, PADS may be a better choice. If your people are familiar with Protel and the staff is stable you might want to stick with Protel. It's normally not a good idea to change tools.


From: "Symanski, Jerry SPAWAR" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Reply-To: "Protel EDA Forum" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Subject: [PEDA] Recommendations please! -- DXP2004 - PADS - Expedition
Date: Sun, 27 Jun 2004 13:07:52 -0700

Gentlemen, I am currently involved in the all too familiar task of
choosing an EDA tool for our group.

Our group consists of about 20 engineers. We do small, low power high
density systems consisting of analog and digital components.  We cover
the full spectrum from algorithms through design, fabrication,
packaging, programming, testing, documentation and user interfaces.

The group has used Protel for many years but now finds ourselves in need
of a complete, full spectrum EDA suite.

I am interested in comments, comparisons, recommendations, etc., from
anyone who has experience in using at least two of the latest versions
of Expedition, PADS and Protel suites.

TIA for your valuable time!


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