Download a free trial to find out which Altium software best suits your needs
Buy any Altium Products with few clicks or send us your quote to contact our sales
Download the latest in PCB design and EDA software
Complete Environment for Schematic + Layout
Entry Level, Professional PCB Design Tool
Community Based PCB Design Tool
Agile PCB Design For Teams
Connecting PCB Design to the Manufacturing Floor
Complete Solution for Library Management
Extensive, Easy-to-Use Component Database
Natural and Effortless Power Distribution Network Analysis
World-Renowned Technology for Embedded Systems Development
Learn best practices with instructional training available worldwide
Gain comprehensive knowledge without leaving your home or office
View & Share electronic designs in your browser
Annual PCB Design Summit
Where Altium users and enthusiasts can interact with each other
Our blog about things that interest us and hopefully you too
Submit ideas and vote for new features you want in Altium tools
Help make the software better by submitting bugs and voting on what's important
A stream of events on AltiumLive you follow by participating in or subscribing to
Information about participating in our Beta program and getting early access to Altium tools
Explore the latest content from blog posts to social media and technical white papers gathered together for your convenience
Buy any Altium Products with few clicks or send us your quote to contact our sales
Take a look at what download options are available to best suit your needs
The documentation area is where you can find extensive, versioned information about our software online, for free.
View the schedule and register for training events all around the world and online
Browse our vast library of free design content including components, templates and reference designs
Attend a live webinar online or get instant access to our on demand series of webinars
Get your questions answered with our variety of direct support and self-service options
Stay up to date with the latest technology and industry trends with our complete collection of technical white papers.
Quick and to-the-point video tutorials to get you started with Altium Designer
Altium is led by a team of highly passionate industry experts
Announcements to the ASX market from the preceding 3 years
Our customers can be found changing every industry; see how
Getting your circuit board to manufacturing requires following certain manufacturability guidelines. Once you gain an understanding of DFM standards, you will be in a much better position to design your circuit boards to meet DFM expectations. As a PCB designer laying out a circuit board, you’ll find yourself having to manage these guidelines and standards to get your board through the manufacturing and assembly process. Altium Designer makes this process easy thanks to its integrated design rules engine. Here’s how this works and how it helps you create high-quality products.
TOPICS IN THIS SOLUTION
PCB design software to help you prepare your circuit board for manufacturing and assembly processes.
DFM, or Design for Manufacturability, is a term that gets thrown around quite a lot these days in the world of printed circuit board design. The question is; what is DFM really? For some it is making sure that the PCB can be fabricated correctly while for others it’s making sure that the PCB can be assembled correctly. Other people would say that it is making sure that the correct components are available when needed while yet others would say that it refers to in-circuit testing. The answer of course is that it is all of the above, and much more as well.
You might engineer your boards to a certain set of constraints, but your manufacturers may need something different to ensure your board will pass a design review. When you fully understand the DFM rules from your list of PCB manufacturers, you can get through a design review and fabrication with high yield and without delays. With the DFM tools in Altium Designer, you can ensure your PCB prototype or full-scale manufacturing run will be completed successfully.
ECAD software can allow designers to create any board layer stacks, and copper printed circuit layout without enforcing DFM rules. Before you start your printed circuit layout, you need to make sure your circuit board design tools will obey important DFM rules. These rules apply to everything from material thickness to solder masks and spacing between vias, holes, parts, and much more.
If you have a list of PCB manufacturers you want to use, then you need to make sure your design is aligned with their PCB design and manufacturing guidelines. The first thing that you should do is to work with your PCB manufacturer to understand what they need in your PCB layout. Take time to learn about the fabrication process and the documentation your fabricator needs for a successful production run.
Once you’ve obtained these requirements from your fabricator, you need to encode these requirements as design rules in your printed circuit design software. Whether you’re designing a PCB prototype or planning a full-scale manufacturing run, obeying DFM rules helps you build high-quality products with high yield.
Altium Designer includes DFM tools in your design rules to help prevent errors on pad and vias before manufacturing and assembly.
If you ever want your circuit board to be more than just a printed circuit layout on a computer screen, you’ll need to create documentation for PCB fabrication and assembly. You’ll need to take information in your schematic and layout and generate a complete set of PCB fabrication deliverables. Planning for manufacturing and the assembly process requires multiple files in standard formats, such as Gerber files, bills of materials, assembly instructions and much more.
Your printed circuit design software should make it easy to construct a bill of materials by importing component information directly from your libraries. Your DFM tools also need to take your PCB footprint information to ensure your board will not violate your DFM rules. Only the best modern circuit board design tools will include DFM tools to inspect all aspects of your layout.
Altium Designer includes tools you need for component selection so that you can control costs and lead times. Altium Designer’s layout editor will give you precise control over manufacturing details related to your through-hole technology and SMT components, such as solder paste and annular rings for holes and vias on components. You can also instantly create high-quality assembly drawings from your PCB layout. This gives you everything your fabricator needs to source and assemble your new circuit board.
Sourcing parts for your circuit board manufacturing run with Altium Designer
Once you’ve determined your DFM requirements, you need to finish your design with as few mistakes as possible. When you use Altium Designer, your DFM requirements are encoded as design rules into your PCB design and layout features. This helps you prevent simple errors that can derail a PCB prototype or full-scale manufacturing run. Altium Designer makes it easy to generate standardized deliverables for any manufacturer. You can rest assured that your circuit board will be produced correctly and that these manufacturers are familiar with Altium Designer’s output format. Because the design engine is integrated throughout your circuit board design tools, you can rest assured your circuit board layout will obey DFM rules.
Altium Designer is the tool of choice for helping you through all aspects of PCB design when working with DFM requirements. All the design features in Altium Designer are governed by a full set of design rules and constraints under your control so that you can make sure to design to the specific DFM guidelines that you need.
Altium Designer’s native 3D environment lets you view your panelized boards when preparing for PCB fabrication.
Working in a rules-driven design environment is the easiest way to make sure you follow all the right PCB design and manufacturing guidelines. Whether you’re designing a single PCB prototype or a complex multi-board system, Altium Designer has the tools you need to get through PCB fabrication and assembly.
Altium Designer on Altium 365 delivers an unprecedented amount of integration to the electronics industry until now relegated to the world of software development, allowing designers to work from home and reach unprecedented levels of efficiency.
We have only scratched the surface of what is possible to do with Altium Designer on Altium 365. You can check the product page for a more in-depth feature description or one of the On-Demand Webinars.