“Many of our customers are building significantly more complex designs resulting in the need for fast and efficient PCB design tools, ” said Bob Williams, marketing director for Pulsonix. “Version 11.0 makes a gigantic leap in speed, dramatically reducing the time it takes to perform many PCB design operations, such as Design Rule Checking (DRC), Copper Pouring, and Gerber generation.”
Significant speed improvements have been made by completely rewriting the underlying graphics engine to utilise the standard DirectX graphics and high-performance graphics cards such as those used in the gaming industry.
In addition, multi-threading capabilities have been extended and added to many functions, meaning that speed is significantly increased on features that are processor intensive and that can utilise parallel processing.
Some of the other key enhancements to version 11.0 include:
- Same Net Via to SMD Check - This feature helps avoid technological problems during soldering of SMD components by ensuring a sufficient solder mask bridge between SMD pads and vias.
- Back Drilling for High-Speed Designs - Using an easily created rule set, back drilling can be defined for critical nets that require the removal of unwanted via or component pin stubs on through-holes. This can significantly reduce signal integrity issues and signal distortion.
- Differential Pair Rules - The ability to create differential pairs from rules automates a typically manual and time-consuming process, especially when working on designs with hundreds of differential pairs.
- Creepage Rules - These were introduced to calculate creepage paths for critical nets. This is needed to validate safety rules for specific designs, e.g., in medical devices.
- Extended Character Set (Unicode) - Extended character and internationalisation support using the Unicode standard has been added.