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 Forum index » DIY Hardware and Software
PCB Manufacturing From PDF
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OW



Joined: Nov 03, 2009
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Location: London

PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 9:36 am    Post subject: PCB Manufacturing From PDF Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hi,

Could anyone recommend me a cheap company that can manufacture PCBs, preferably from PDF files?

Thanks!
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Psyingo



Joined: Jun 11, 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

usually for pcbs you will have to provide them with a gerber file. there are a lot of different layers and data needed for pcbs and im not sure a pdf would cut it... it certainly isn't standard and im not aware of any that can do it.
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diablojoy



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

A reasonably good PCB layout program that outputs files in a gerber format is your best bet.
I recommend FreePCB as it is fairly easy to learn and has very few limitations.
once you have your gerber files , PCB manufacture cost can be very cheap
Itead studio for example will do 10 off 100 x 50 mm boards for under $30 plus shipping.

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elmegil



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

diablojoy wrote:
A reasonably good PCB layout program that outputs files in a gerber format is your best bet.
I recommend FreePCB as it is fairly easy to learn and has very few limitations.
once you have your gerber files , PCB manufacture cost can be very cheap
Itead studio for example will do 10 off 100 x 50 mm boards for under $30 plus shipping.


I just did my first order from iTead for 10x Turing Machine PCBs a couple weeks ago and it was $27 WITH shipping. Anxiously awaiting the results....
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marvkaye



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PostPosted: Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Another cool source for prototypes is oshpark. They do 3 copies of prototype boards amazingly cheaply. I just had two different batches done, the boards were around 2" square, the smaller ones came to $8.90, the larger ones $11.25. Takes awhile because they panelize your design with other customers submissions before sending out for fab, but generally the delay isn't much more than a week or 10 days. The results are very nice, with silkscreens, plated through holes, double sided with solder mask. Highly recommended. As for the OP's original question, no, they don't work from PDFs, only gerbers.
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OW



Joined: Nov 03, 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thanks for all the replies!

I'm using a mac, so won't be able to used FreePCB, can anyone recommend something else?

Thanks again!
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gdavis



Joined: Feb 27, 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 11:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Eagle is popular if you can work with the limitations (1 schematic sheet, about 4x3" 2 layer board max).

Kicad is pretty nice also. Not the same standard as Eagle but isn't as limited, you can have multiple sheets, hierarchy and large multi-layered boards.

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diablojoy



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 3:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Kicad is good
for MAC there is also OSMOND and gEDA but i have no experiance with either of those.
I cant recommend Eagle at all though many swear by it , far too many limitations in the free version for my use and its not intuitive at all. feels like it was written by a commitee and i do mean that in a bad way.
if you do go with Eagle do not trust any of the libraries - make your own
also autoroute is evil Twisted Evil never use it.

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vtl5c3



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Perhaps this:

http://www.cenon.info/

(Thanks to Brian Schweinsburg for making me aware of this app.)
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diablojoy



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Quote:
Perhaps this:

http://www.cenon.info/


yes I only just found out about this one at the start of the week
just a pity it wont run under windows , looks good for getting gerbers from DXF files as well as PDF which means you could get around expresspcb's major downfall.
good deal for mac user's though.

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Usedtobe



Joined: Sep 10, 2009
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

check out diptrace!

www.diptrace.com

very user friendly, it's the most intuitive I've used (albeit a taaaad buggy, but it works on a mac, and isn't eagle)
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amdagan



Joined: Jun 21, 2013
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Location: Iron mountain

PostPosted: Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

From this thread: http://electro-music.com/forum/topic-54700.html

http://platinenbelichter.de/
It says that they accept PDF's.
First time I've ever seen a PCB fabber say this on their site.
Haven't used them myself - may be worth asking in the other thread re. experiences specifically with PDF source files?
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