Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs) are composed of a sandwich of alternating layers of insulating substrate and conducting copper layers. The copper layers are etched to form connecting tracks between components as well as earth/ground or power planes. The simplest PCB has one substrate layer and one ...

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Assigning mechanical layers in Altium

I've just recently started designing my first PCB using Altium but am confused with the mechanical layers. I have a 4-layer board, and am placing components on both the top and bottom side (Through ...
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62 views

Understanding PCB layer stack-up shorthand notation [2:(1(2+345*67)*16):7]

I was given a PCB layer stackup specification like this: [2:(1(2+345*67)*16):7] For an 8 layer blind via setup. Could someone provide a reference to decode this ...
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41 views

Altium Connections

In Altium, does a multilayer Pad with the same net as a plane (internal ground plane in this case) automatically connect to that plane, or is a separate via required?
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66 views

How does this USB capacitive touch light circuit work? You can touch anywhere and it turns on, not just the electrode

Here are some pics of the circuit board. Now I'm not asking how the circuit works, I understand that. There is a capacitive touch sensor IC where the shiny electrode you see on top connects to the ...
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56 views

Connecting to a split plane in Altium

I am using Altium 14.0.9. I have a split plane on my inner layer of a 4 layer PCB. This split plane is connected to the net C6_2. It is basically 2 polygons on my ...
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473 views

Return path on a PCB

I've spent the weekend absorbing video lectures from Eric Bogatin and reading his book "Signal and Power Integrity - Simplified" He states that the the return path for the PCB may be any DC plane ...
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4answers
109 views

PCB Ground Plane

I am designed a PCB in Eagle and I am new to doing this. I have created a ground plane on the bottom layer that covers the whole board but I still have a few traces running through the bottom layer ...
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98 views

Single or dual ground plane for SMPS DC-DC converter?

I'm working on DC-DC converter prototype using dual layer PCB. Layout it finished using bottom layer as ground plane. Question is does make any sense to put on top layer also ground. How that can ...
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47 views

VCC powerplane layout

On a 4 layer stackup with signals routed on top/bottom; 2nd layer VCC powerplane; 3rd layer GND powerplane. How should the VCC powerplane be layed out? Should it be surrounded with a few mm of GND ...
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145 views

Mixed Signal PCB, 2 or 4 Layer?

I'm currently designing a mixed-signal PCB for a client and I've been reading a lot about signal integrity and most of the books recommend a 4 layer board (or more) because of the noise resistance ...
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1answer
46 views

Eagle tStop pad colliding with other pads

As you can see from the image, the tStop layer is colliding/wildly close with other tStop pad layer. Is that a cause of concern? IC is Linear Technology battery management IC - LTC4155. Package is ...
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423 views

PCB Tinning to increase current

How can I design a PCB in order for it to have this kind of PCB Tinning finish? I do know this decreases the resistance of the tracks and increases the amount of current it can handle however Do I ...
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2answers
713 views

Enabling extra routing layers in Eagle (paid version) PCB design

I started a PCB design in the freeware version of Eagle, now I have the full version, but it won't let me route tracks to the extra route layers (i.e: only top and bottom). Starting a new design in ...
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3answers
397 views

Can differential USB traces be routed relative to Power (not Ground) planes?

I would like to route my USB 2.0 (12MHz) signal on the bottom layer of a 4-layer PCB. However, the edge-coupled microstrips would then be referenced to the power plane, not the ground plane. The ...
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2answers
561 views

Gerber - is my understanding of solder mask layer (GTS / GBS) correct?

I've just had a PCB manufactured for me, but it seems like the solder mask is only applied to where the copper is. I'm trying to figure out if it's my fault or not. According to my understanding ...
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1answer
60 views

EAGLE: Delete internal layers

I'm doing a Layout and I have some problems deleting an internal layer. As you can see in the pictures below I have 4 layers (1, 2, 15, 16). But somehow I also have a layer called Route 3 (3). I get ...
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2answers
342 views

PCB's and designing power connections

I've designed a few PCB's now, but never put much thought into good practices. They were small boards and most of the emphasis was put into just making sure everything that needed to be connected was ...
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498 views

Hide particular airwires/nets in eagle

Is it possible to hide particular airwires in eagle, without hiding all of them? So if there's a net I am not currently interested in, but it has a lot of connections, confusing where other airwires ...
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109 views

8-Layer Stackup question

Alright. I was given the task to design an analog design board which contains lots of opamps, some CMOS switches and some ADCs/DACs. It also contains 4 separate power supplies (each supplying +5V and ...
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4answers
765 views

PCB, pads with holes but with different nets on top and bottom sides

I need pads with holes in by PCB, but the top and bottom side of the pads need to have different nets i.e. the top and bottom sides must be isolated. Here is the picture Is this possible to fabricate ...
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2answers
133 views

When is it theoretically possible to fit PCB circuit on x Layers (emphasis: x =1)

When is it theoretically possible to fit a given circuit on a certain number of layers? (Presumably PCB layers.) What is/are the name of the mathematics/algorithms that might determine this, or ...
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3answers
602 views

50MHz SPI PCB routing, use vias or resistors?

I am trying to route the SPI between MCU and ADC. However, the pin orders between MCU and ADC are not matched, there are crossings. A four-layer board is used.(signal - ground - power - signal) I ...
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389 views

Calculating differential PCB traces - Edge-Coupled Microstrip

I finally have the microstrip characteristic impedance thing figured out. But now, of course, I need to learn about differential signalling on PCB traces. I've spent some time researching. Here is ...
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694 views

Which layer of PCB is used to identify cut-out of individual boards within a panel?

Let's say I'm using a software like EagleCAD to create a panel with a few copies of a design (or even different designs). There is a "Dimension" layer (mapped to an Outline layer, e.g., GKO), but ...
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2answers
381 views

Power origin and power planes placement on PCB

Although there are many similar questions to this one, I wish to get your attention to this specific board layout. The main power on the board will be 5V, and one of the layers is dedicated for ...
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1k views

4 layer PCBs with Fritzing

Can you use Fritzing to create a 4 layer pcb? Also, in real life, what is the maximum limit of layers we can use to create pcbs? is it 4 layers?
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173 views

Layout of 4 layer PCB - pour?

I'm working on a 4 layer PCB with internal 2 layers being power and GND... 2 outside layers are signal. Is it better to have a pour on the outside layers or just leave them empty except for the ...
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2answers
351 views

Tips on routing multiple powers(+5/-5/+15/-15/3.3 and etc. ) for a four-layer PCB

The most tedious thing for me while routing PCBs are the powers. I have made several PCBs of these kind and it seems that I have not learned much from the process. The power connections are always a ...
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123 views

Correcting printed PCB (add a via)

This board is a prototype for the project and is for testing. It is missing the soldermask and silkscreen layers, so correcting mistakes is very possible. The board was printed correctly, but somehow ...
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1k views

Connecting copper pours in Cadence (OrCAD) PCB Designer

I'm trying to climb the Cadence learning curve, coming from an Eagle background. My board is four-layer, with a ground plane underneath the top layer. I have a surface mount IC that has an exposed ...
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4answers
705 views

Import PCB outline made from connected lines from Inkscape

I have designed an outline for a PCB in Inkscape and wish to import it into Eagle, but the guides I have found leave me with lots of little lines in Eagle, not a continuous line, what's more is there ...
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1answer
1k views

Altium, it is possible to mirror the silk screen?

I am trying to build a simple PCB at home. It is a single layer PCB, and I would like to transfer the silk screen on the back side, mirrored. But for that, I need to mirror text, etc. To design the ...
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476 views

Benefits of top and bottom ground pour in multilayer boards with proper ground plane layers and stackup

I'm trying to get some analytical feeling for the use of ground pours on bottom and top layer in multilayer boards with proper stackups such as (for example). Top Gnd Sig1 Power Power Sig2 Gnd ...
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2k views

PROTEUS ARES PCB double side Layout - Force bottom side lyout for selected devices

I want to make a double side PCB design in ARES ( I have the desing in ISIS and I know how to do it), but for some specifics devices (Integrtate Circuit Socekts DIL16 and DIL28) I don't how to force ...
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45 views

dual layer films from two single layers

Around here we have some supply problems, aka a 2-sided PCB could cost easily a hundred dollars. I was wondering if anyonw have succesfuly integrated (sticked) two 1 layer copper films into a dual ...
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4k views

PCB Ground and Power Planes

I am desigining a 4-layer PCB with the following stack-up: Signal Top, Ground Plane, Power Plane, Signal Bottom. This is the first PCB I make like this, which includes a noisy SMPS with a switching ...
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311 views

Eagle TI CC2540 Ground Pad?

I have been working on a PCB layout. It's my first time working with Eagle, and my first time prototyping a board. I am using a CC2540. I understand that this uses a RHA package which has a ground ...
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1answer
705 views

6-Layer Stackup for PCI express design

I'm pondering over a stackup for a 6-layer board using a couple of PCIe connected ICs. My first idea was to use the following Stackup: Signal GND Power (Multiple power supplies, so it's a split ...
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3answers
6k views

How to complete 3D Export PCB in Altium

I know how to export a STEP file in Altium, but is there a way to export the whole PCB, just as it is displayed in Altium's screen? I mean with the traces, vias, components, etc.
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3k views

The best stack-up possible with a four-layer PCB?

I'm designing a 4 layer PCB and I know that the standard stack-up is Signals GND VCC Singals (GND and VCC can be switched depending on the layer with more signals) The problem is, I don't ...
6
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2answers
351 views

Do you think this board can be done in 2-layer or should I go to 4-layer?

Here are 3 photos of the board I am trying to build. The photos are the top, the bottom and the bottom with the analog portion (Buffer+ADC) inside a red box. It is an ohmmeter. Most SMD parts are on ...
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4answers
3k views

How do I disable clearance check for a layer or for only some certain elements?

I'm designing a PCB in Altium Designer. There is a very large heat sink in my project. When I put it on the PCB, there will be plenty of empty space under it where I can put other small components. ...