Pre-purchase support - New user(UK)

For general questions regarding the software and for all questions that do not fit in any of the threads above.
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Joined: 07 Jan 2021, 08:25

Pre-purchase support - New user(UK)

#1 Post by ticelec » 10 Jan 2021, 19:54


We're being dragged (kicking and screaming!) into the c21st - by being asked to drop OrCAD/386. OrCAD/386 has done us well, and we'd happily keep using it. It runs well under DoxBOX in all versions of Windows on PC. We were early users of Orcad, I started using it as a boy in 1987/8.

So, we're considering DipTrace, and like it so far (laying with the 200 pin freebie)

I've contacted "sales" and "support" regarding a Gerber import anomaly (File imports to "ViewPlot" and our PCB fab without issue - no biggy, just curious to see what they'd say; and how quickly) - No ack/response so far.

So my question is .... what's DipTrace support like? .... and .... are there users on here that use DipTrace in anger - i.e. within their commercial businesses?


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Re: Pre-purchase support - New user(UK)

#2 Post by Alex » 11 Jan 2021, 10:17

We investigated your gerber file and did some changes in source codes in order to import the file correctly. The next update will include the fix. If you want, we can import whole set of gerber files for you.

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Re: Pre-purchase support - New user(UK)

#3 Post by Tomg » 11 Jan 2021, 11:18

I am not a professional PCB designer by any stretch of the imagination so take that into consideration while reading the following...

DipTrace is not an "enterprise" level package that offers the kind of professional documentation and revision tracking found in more expensive programs. As of v4.0.0.5 DipTrace does not have enhanced manual routing (push/shove/hug), flex-PCB capabilities, embedded components, region-based rules, cross-probing/cross-placing, an external database interface, automated updating between modules (changing a pattern will force you to manually update related components, schematics, PCBs), pin-swapping, etc. The title block editor is minimalistic, offers no automatic page numbering and only has two global variables. I am unaware of any high-priced EDA programs that feature DipTrace translators, but I could be wrong. Yes, DipTrace can export files in other EDA formats, but the amount of rework necessary to achieve the desired results in the receiving program is unknown to me. Of course, DipTrace doesn't have a $6000+ price tag, either.

If these features are critical and you have the budget I would think about going with the professional level of OrCad PCB Designer with the CIS option. Since you are already familiar with OrCAD, the learning curve should be pretty flat. If you want to learn a different "enterprise" level program, there are other ridiculously expensive choices out there such as Pulsonix, Altium Designer and Mentor.

If these features aren't critical to you, then DipTrace is a viable option. It is user friendly, easier to learn and the developers are dedicated to adding new features and solving any bugs that may arise.

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