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I have almost finished my PCB design and preparing to make Gerber files. I have some doubts related to Gerber Setup Options of Altium Designer 16.1.My first quesiton about Files->Fabrication Ouputs->Gerber Files->Drill Drawings menu. I have selected both "Plot all used drill pairs" options. Is it an important selection? The second question is in Advanced menu. I have selected both "Keep leading and trailing zeros" and "Reference to absolute origin" selections. I have read the Altium's online document related to these topics however i could not understand completely. I am sharing the images what i mentioned. My board has two layers, both smd and thorugh hole components, and 60mm x 100mm sizes. For the other Gerber Setup options, i have clicked"mm","4:3", "Embedded Apertures (RS274X)" also. Thank you so much.

enter image description here

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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think I ever made a Drill Drawing - the board shop doesn't need it. They do, however require an NC Drill File. That file is, if I recall correctly, produced by a different menu item from the Gerber photoplot files. \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Bennett Aug 10 '17 at 17:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ @PeterBennett ... I didn't used to do this, but at some point board houses started asking me for a fabrication drawing which is basically a Drill Drawing, dimensions and notes on routes and cutouts etc., and other information on how the board should be made. It's worth googling "pcb fabrication drawing". I alway include one these days. \$\endgroup\$ – Tut Aug 10 '17 at 17:40
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I always check the Plot all used drill pairs for both the drill drawing and drill guide because you never know when you might need it. Regarding the advanced screen I always reference to the relative origin. The relative origin is the one you can move by going to Edit --> Origin --> Set (shortcut E-O-S). I place this origin at a large mounting hole which supposedly makes it easier for the board house to reference the other holes to it. The absolute origin, if memory serves, is the bottom left-hand corner of the PCB editor window. I don't like to use this origin because it places the actual board away from it. As for the leading and trailing zeros most board houses will not care one little bit.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ So, do you chose keep or suppress them? \$\endgroup\$ – layout789 Aug 10 '17 at 17:33
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    \$\begingroup\$ By default I have leading zeroes suppressed and trailing zeroes not suppressed, but like I said it really doesn't matter in most cases. Mine is only set that way because that was what Altium defaulted to when I installed it. \$\endgroup\$ – DerStrom8 Aug 10 '17 at 17:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ I think you need zeros on one side or the other (not necessarily both sides), so the photoplotter can reliably determine where the decimal point is in the coordinates. If you omit both leading and trailing zeros, the plotter can't determine if a given coordinate is 45, 4.5, 0.45, or 0.0045 units. \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Bennett Aug 10 '17 at 19:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PeterBennett They wouldn't have options to suppress the zeros if they weren't able to reconstruct the actual drill data when the zeros are suppressed.. I don't currently know how it works and would need to do some reading to gain an understanding. If I think of it I might look that up tomorrow and report back here. \$\endgroup\$ – DerStrom8 Aug 11 '17 at 1:35

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