Update on schematic drawing tools

I have messed around with Eagle, Kicad, Fritzing and Upverter. I am always ending up being frustrated because components/parts are missing or the usability is simply too complex for infrequent use. I think it might be like firing up AutoCAD for a garden shed.

Do you know of any small and easy to use schematic drawing tools, where the parts creation is simple and the usability is straight forward. In case I need more sophisticated PCB and related stuff, I will probably turn to Eagle.

What what you recommend today for schematic drawing?

If you don’t mind your designs being online and for all to see, then Curcuit Maker from Altium would be a good choice. Parts creation is easy as it is in the full Altium Design suite and you get a nice 3D view too if you wish to add the STEP parts etc.

If you need for commercial use, Circuit Studio is similar but files are local and no restrictions on commercial use. Not cheap at around $1500 but way cheaper than the full blown Altium Designer.

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I think you’re approaching it from the wrong direction.

You should find projects that require you to spend more time in a PCB tool. Make more PCBs, and use the tool.


Personally I struggle with all the workflows I’ve seen. Eagle somewhat makes sense to me, Kicad doesn’t really… I’m also time poor so not going to learn the ins and outs of multiple tools, so I’m stuck with Eagle for now, although Kicad have finally started releasing official builds that include 2015 code (and 2014 code - they were woefully behind in making anything “official”) and I do have some summer holidays coming up where I want to re-train myself :slight_smile:

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Practice makes perfect!

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According to me AutoCAD is the perfect drawing tool. It is not that hard to use. Initially it may be hard to use but as you work more on it you will find that it is more useful and enough worthy.

Autocad is not for PCB design. It is a 2D CAD system with some 3D.

I also feel like Brett. Since I already know Eagle enough to do the things I need, I simply can’t be bothered learning yet another tool. And besides, the one thing I like about Eagle is that so many of the reference designs out there is in Eagle format anyway, so using it really helps. And it quick and easy to download and install… pretty much the same reasons I still like Arduino too.

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