The 99se high speed rules and length matching were an okay start when they were introduced many years ago, but I was expecting those features to be polished and additional capabilities to be added. That hasn't happened.
Here's an abbreviated list of what I need in the realm of high speed design:
* All nets and classes must have a skew length factor to compensate for the various in-chip lengths of different signals.
* Length matching must support series caps and resistors.
* Length matching parameters must include WIDTH (frequency?), not just gap and amplitude.
* The length matching amplitude parameter must be a maximum setting (not fixed) so that the length matching can reduce amplitude as needed to fit the zig-zagging within the available space around each net.
* Length matching must run in batch mode. Manually running each pass to add just one amplitude section at a time is ridiculous. Would any EDA vendor dream of making an autorouter that only partially routed each net before it had to be re-started (yeah, maybe Altium)? Ideally, the length matching would automatically regenerate (much like polygons) if a net were rerouted.
* Must have design rules specific to differential pairs.
* Must have Interactive routing of differential pairs (both nets are placed simultaneously with correct width and spacing per rules).
I could make this list much longer but these are the basics. These features could easily save me 20-30 hours per board!
There was an article recently pointed out by another forum member (sorry I don't remember who or when exactly) which seemed to indicate that Altium's CEO doesn't think high speed design features are very important (at least that was my interpretation). Given that, and the fact that DXP has added very little design capability to PCB layout, I am very rapidly loosing hope that DXP is a platform that I will be able to continue using much longer.
At 05:59 AM 9/9/2004, Mike Reagan wrote:
.....DXP is now moving toward it's 2nd birthday and I think most of us feel its not nearly as usable or productive as its predecessor. 99se was showing its age in it's lack of many high speed design features.
I would be interested in hearing one high speed feature that was implemented in DXP. I have yet to find any. I use both DXP and 99SE. If anything 99SE has a huge advantage over DXP with ease of use in the design rules menu. Try to set up maximum parallel rules between net classes in DXP sometime, it becomes an experiment in programming. Actually, I found a bug in DXP that it doesnt support more than three different levels of layer rules when exporting to a dsn file. This is hardlly a high speed advancement.
Mike Reagan EDSI Frederick MD
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