I have to redo a schematic for a PCB. I have a paper version of the schematic, the Gerber file of the PCB and the PCB in a CADSTAR project but not the schematic. I'm using Altium and wanted to know if there was an easy way to redo the schematic or do I have to do it all by hand?

Ps. the PCB has ~720 component and thats why I'm asking


I found a diagram of the PCB made in Zuken's E3.schematic, if it can help me not to do it by hand, let me know.


1 Answer 1


AD in fact DOES have a CADSTAR importer, yet the quality of such imports is always pretty questionable - I wouldn't just import it an then work on that data.

Yet, there are some options to make sure your work matches the original work. We regularly do such work and some proven tasks which may aid you during the way are:

  • Try to get or create a netlist from the original design (which nets are connected to which pins). When you have finished your design, compare both netlists automatically (you'll need a tool for that). This will make sure that each pin is connected where it should be. The original netlist can probably be generated from within CADSTAR or from Altium's import.

  • Try to import the PCB and place your parts on the original positions of the design. This will make sure that the design matches the original design. If it's impossible to import the PCB, import the Gerber data and use PnP data to place your parts.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you, I was able to import the file and generate a netlist. I was wondering if it was possible to use the created netlist to help create the schema \$\endgroup\$
    – jack
    Commented Oct 31, 2018 at 9:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ Not really. You can use it to compare them in the end but the netlist is just a collection of pins and signals; Altium cannot derive wires from it automatically. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tom L.
    Commented Oct 31, 2018 at 9:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ You can try automating placement of components using x,y co-ordinates & Orientation. Then u can try connections b/w 2 IC's. go in step by step and verify that step before proceeding to next step. \$\endgroup\$
    – user19579
    Commented Oct 31, 2018 at 10:56

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