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PCB design system software upgrade

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ALTIUM has announced a new version of its P-CAD PCB design system for layout specialists - P-CAD 2002 - offering more than sixty new and enhanced features.

Many interface elements have been redesigned in P-CAD 2002 to give PCB layout specialists enhanced ease of use and a more productive design environment.

A major new addition is the Design Manager feature that allows users to view and manage design data more easily. It presents spreadsheet-like component and net views that are integrated into the PCB layout environment, allowing control over key elements of the design.

Another new feature is the Visual Placement Area (VPA) interactive rules-based placement tool that, when a component is being placed, analyses design constraints and displays overlays representing the legal regions of the board in which a component may be placed.

This feature makes the critical component placement phase of PCB design faster and gives more control to the designer.

P-CAD 2002 introduces the ability to display an individual net's traces, connections and objects in their own unique colors. This useful visualisation feature enables designers to easily see individual nets in the context of the board.

Other notable features of P-CAD 2002 include support for Valor's ODB++ file format, support for True Type fonts in Gerber and ODB++, component clearance rule checking, and a number of usability-targeted GUI refinements.

A 30-day fully-functional trial version of P-CAD 2002 will be available for download from www.pcad.com.

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