Importing a Design into CircuitMaker

Created: March 29, 2022 | Updated: April 6, 2022

The Import command is used to import a design project or document into a CircuitMaker project.

The command can be accessed from any editor by choosing File » Import from the main menus.

The Open dialog opens in which you can browse to then select the desired document. Use the drop-down in the dialog (highlighted in the image below) to select a specific type of file. Choose All files (*.*) to see all files.

After selecting the desired file then clicking Open, the selected file will open in the design space and will be added to the Projects panel.

Supported Design Types

The Import command allows you to open files from other design types. Use the respective System Preferences to configure the files.


Supported EAGLE files are *.SCH, *.BRD, and *.EPF. Refer to System Preferences Importers - EAGLE.


Supported PADS files are *.ASC and *.TXT. Refer to System Preferences Importers - PADS.


Supported OrCAD files are *.DSN and *.MAX. Refer to System Preferences Importers - OrCAD.

Protel 99SE 

Supported Protel 99SE files are *DDB. Refer to System Preferences Importers - Protel 99SE.


Supported AutoCAD files are *.DXF and *.DWG. Refer to System Preferences Importers - AutoCAD.

After opening the AutoCAD file, the Import from AutoCAD dialog opens in which you can configure the files.

Import from AutoCAD Dialog

Key options in the dialog are described below.

  • Import as components – enable to parse AutoCAD Blocks (grouped collections of primitive objects) as compound objects and place them on the document as PCB components.
  • Import as primitives – enable to parse all AutoCAD object data, including objects within Blocks, as primitive/base objects (lines/tracks, arcs, etc.).

The AutoCAD DXF/DWG format allows for the inclusion of two drawing environments – the Model space and Paper space. In AutoCAD, the drawing source is in the limitless 3D Model space, and can also be resized into the 2D Paper space in preparation for page printing. The saved DXF/DWG file can include the Model space data or data from both the Model and Paper spaces.

  • Model – the dimensional data is at true scaling (1:1). This is the recommended setting for a reliable import process.
  • Paper – in the source file, the Paper space dimensional information is scaled to suit a specified page size and layout. Note that Paper space data might not be included in the DXF/DWG file, which will result in no drawing data being imported when this option is selected.
  • Scale - source DXF/DWG files that have been created with the units set to mm are more likely to scale at a 1:1 ratio when imported.

Layer Mappings and Donut To Pad Conversion Table

Use this region to specify how named layers in the AutoCAD file are mapped to CircuitStudio layers, and if donut shapes (arc circles) are converted to Pads.

Additional Controls

  • Load Settings – click to load import mapping and donut conversion settings from an existing *.ini file.
  • Save Settings – click to save the current import mapping and donut conversion settings to a plain text *.ini file.


Supported KiCAD files are *.pro*.kicad_pro*.sch, *.kicad_sch, and *.kicad_pcb. Refer to System Preferences Importers - KiCAD.


Supported P-CAD files are *.SCH and *.PCB. Refer to System Preferences Importers - P-CAD.

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