What’s New in Altium Designer

Explore new features, enhancements, and important changes introduced in the latest version of
Altium Designer, or see what we’re working on now for upcoming releases.

Constraint Manager Improvements

Automatically Propagate Width Values in the Constraint Manager

You can now enter a width value into a single cell at the top grid area, and it will automatically propagate to all corresponding width or gap fields. Furthermore, when working from a schematic, there is an indication of the sync status between constraints defined in the Constraint Manager and those specified through design directives in the source schematics.

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

PCB Layout Enhancements

Remove Polygon Necks Less Than a Specified Width

With the new "obey rules" option in the properties panel, you now have the capability to remove necks less than a specified width for placed polygon pours. Furthermore, Altium Designer now observes user-defined geometries for the component selection bounding box when moving a component in Push Obstacles mode.

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

Data Management Improvements

See the Exact YTEOL Value for Your Components

The real value for years to end of life parameter is accurately displayed across all instances where SiliconExpert data is presented, ensuring clarity and precision in your design process. Additionally, we’ve added support for referencing SiliconExpert compliance datasheets, enhancing accessibility and usability. We’ve also included support for the newest Microsoft Access Database file format when synchronizing Database to Workspace components.

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

  • To see an overview about the Manufacturer Part Search, visit the feature page.

  • Visit the documentation page to learn about the searching and placing components.

  • Discover the latest features and capabilities of Altium Designer 24 with free training.

Altium Designer 24

约束管理器改进

使用约束管理器确保准确的电气间距

现在可通过Clearances视图中的矩阵,为网络和/或差分对之间的电气间距轻松指定Creepage规则。此外,还支持在所选行或列内对间距矩阵进行多重编辑,以简化工作流。

推荐内容

  • 要了解约束管理器的概述,请访问功能页面

  • 访问文档页面,了解约束管理器的相关信息。

Harness Design Improvements

Specify Details for Each Pin of Your Harness Component

You now have the ability to specify crimps, seals, plugs, or other cavity parts for each required pin directly within the Wiring Diagram. These elements are also seamlessly integrated into the wiring list and connection table in the Draftsman document, providing clarity and precision to your designs.

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

Simulation Improvements

Utilize S-Parameters to Characterize Your Networks

Altium Designer’s S-parameters tool, available within the Simulation Dashboard panel, offers a method to characterize networks by evaluating the ratio of incident and reflected microwaves, effectively addressing challenges in high-frequency circuits.

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

  • Witness the benefits of using the Simulation tool in this short video.
  • To see an overview about the Simulation tool, visit the feature page.
  • Visit the documentation page to learn about the Simulation tool.
  • Discover the latest features and capabilities of Altium Designer 24 with free training.

Constraint Manager Enhancements

Transfer Design Constraints Between your PCB and Schematic

When accessing the Constraint Manager from the PCB editor and defining constraints on the Physical and Electrical views, it is now possible to transfer those constraints to the Schematic through the Engineering Change Order (ECO) process. This enhancement ensures design consistency by reducing errors and saving time in the constraint definition process.

 

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

 

Harness Design Improvements

Set Multiple Colors to a Wire in your Harness Design

Altium Designer has added support for multi-colored wires, with the ability to define primary, secondary, tertiary, and border colors as part of a wire's parameters to help expand the functional identification capability of wires in your design.

 

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

PCB Layout Replication Improvements

Manually Map Components with PCB Layout Replication

You now have the ability to manually map components in target blocks where multiple components have been detected by the PCB Layout Replication Tool as having similar connections. This allows you to manually choose between available components that are able to replace each other, without violating circuit connectivity.

 

RECOMMENDED CONTENT

Constraint Manager Enhancements

Experience a Heightened Level of Control with the Constraint Manager

Altium Designer's Constraint Manager, with significant enhancements in design control, is now more flexible and intuitive. Efficiency in design organization is improved with the capability of adding nets to an existing class. Custom topologies are defined more insightfully with structured xSignals, and we’ve also added line numbers on tabs/grids to enhance clarity and navigation. Lastly, you can now choose between the Constraint Manager and the older Design Rules system when creating a new project to adapt to your preferred workflow.

PCB CoDesign Improvements

Highlight Specific Modified Categories with PCB CoDesign

Altium Designer's latest PCB CoDesign enhancements offer a more efficient and streamlined collaboration process. You can now precisely compare and apply changes to unions for targeted modifications. Also, the ‘Show on PCB’ option simplifies highlighting changes in specific categories for better visualization. These improvements aim to boost efficiency and provide a more organized and seamless collaborative design experience.

Multi-Board Improvements

Create a Clear Visual Representation of your Multi-Board Project

Altium Designer's Multi-board Draftsman tool integrates manufacturing drawings into Multi-board design projects. The multi-board view displays combined graphics of PCB outlines and 3D models with various viewing options. Enjoy standard Draftsman features like annotation, dimensioning, and BOM, and say goodbye to managing different documentation sets or relying solely on MCAD software. Draftsman for Multi-board offers a clear visual representation of board connections in larger systems, ensuring design integrity and consistency.

Simulation Improvements

Make Informed Component Decisions with Stress Analysis

Altium Designer introduces the Simulation Stress Analysis tool, which enhances the design process by incorporating stress analysis within transient analysis. This tool calculates and checks component operating conditions against defined limits, simplifies stress model creation, and allows for reliability derating. With a comprehensive stress chart in the simulation viewer, it provides precision and control for informed decisions on component reliability and performance.

Simplify Complex Design Rules with the Constraint Manager

Altium Designer's Constraint Manager, available for pro and enterprise subscriptions, simplifies meeting complex standards and PCB design requirements. This tool allows easy browsing, creation, modification, and reuse of verified constraint sets through a tabular, object-based user interface. Enhancing clarity and comprehension, it seamlessly integrates rules between schematics and PCB layout, streamlining the design process with a consistent format for rule addition in both areas.

Work Together and Design Faster with PCB CoDesign

Altium Designer's PCB CoDesign simplifies collaboration, ensuring design integrity for engineering teams. With pro and enterprise subscriptions, this tool streamlines cooperation within your workspace, eliminating manual change tracking. Visualize alterations, compare layouts, and merge updates effortlessly in a unified environment. Say goodbye to cumbersome revision histories and embrace a more efficient PCB design approach with PCB CoDesign.

Elevate Your Projects with the 3D Mechatronic Integrated Device Tool

Altium Designer introduces the groundbreaking 3D Mechatronic Integrated Device design tool, simplifying the integration of non-planar electronic designs. It seamlessly aligns with existing components, synchronizes with schematic documents, and eliminates the need for time-consuming M-CAD hacks. This tool meets electrical specifications while enabling aesthetically pleasing designs. With pro or enterprise subscriptions, it facilitates easy adoption in your product development workflow.

Assign Currents to Multiple Nets with the Power Analyzer by Keysight

Altium Designer's enhanced Power Analyzer by Keysight Tool addresses power network analysis challenges efficiently. With new support for assigning currents to multiple nets on the same component across different series elements. This enhancement ensures a seamless and efficient power analysis experience, allowing you to maximize benefits from your design in Altium Designer.

Altium Designer 23

Tackle Any Design Complexity With the Constraint Manager

For enterprise and pro subscriptions, the new Constraint Manager offers a table-based interface, accessible from both Schematic and PCB, allowing you to define constraints more collaboratively. Engineers and stakeholders can collectively set design constraints with ease.

Speed Up Your Workflow With the Power of PCB Layout Replication

The new PCB Layout Replication tool gives you the ability to quickly replicate the layout for repetitive blocks of circuitry in a flat PCB design. This avoids the need for manual routines, snippets, reuse blocks, or converting into a multi-channel design.

Minimize Manual Effort With Automatic Length Tuning

Automatic Length Tuning introduces automatic length and delay tuning functionality in 2D mode, accessed conveniently from the main Route menu. This feature reduces the manual effort typically associated with length and delay tuning, expediting your design process.

PCB Improvements

Easily Edit Paste and Solder Mask Shapes

The custom paste and solder mask feature is now automatically enabled by default, allowing you to personalize pad shapes directly without the need for workarounds. This simplification improves manufacturing efficiency, project clarity, and provides a more user-friendly interface.

PCB Improvements

Retrace Single-Ended Traces at any Angle

We've added a new "Retrace Parameters" feature to the Gloss and Retrace panel, offering enhanced flexibility for retracing single-ended traces at any angle using the Rounded hugging style. You can also set rule-based width modes or input custom values to ensure compliance with design rules. Furthermore, you have the option to "Preserve Route Path," allowing you to maintain precise trace geometry during retracing, providing greater control and design accuracy.

Component Management Improvements

Track Components in Reuse Blocks with the “Where Used” Panel

Altium Designer's "Where Used" component panel streamlines component management in your PCB designs. It offers a comprehensive list of where each component is used, making conflict resolution and maintaining design accuracy a breeze. The latest enhancement features a redesigned panel and integration of Reuse Blocks from the connected Workspace's library, with tabs displayed only when relevant to reduce clutter.

Collaborative Improvements

Efficient Concurrent Design with PCB CoDesign

For Pro and Enterprise subscriptions, PCB CoDesign in Altium Designer revolutionizes collaborative design by enabling multiple team members to work simultaneously on a project, ensuring streamlined development, efficient testing, and faster iteration to meet project deadlines. This feature includes Git-like version control, allowing collaborators to access the same project concurrently, commit changes to a master branch, and use Commenting and Tasks features to allocate work on the board. Notifications alert team members of commits, and the Compare and Merge panel displays differences in design, offering color-coded feedback. When conflicts arise, such as overlapping changes by multiple designers, you can confidently decide to keep local changes or accept remote changes from the latest commit, ensuring a smooth collaborative design process.

Importer Enhancements

Seamlessly Import OrCAD and Allegro Design Files

There are key improvements and fixes in relation to the import of OrCAD and Allegro design files into Altium Designer. This includes support for customized port connectors, accurate title block parameter handling, component fill coloring preservation, and precise design file imports, ensuring your design process is seamless.

SVN-to-Git Migration

Migrate Projects from SVN to Git in Your Enterprise Server Workspace

For enterprise, when connected to an Enterprise Server Workspace and a design project is stored in a SVN repository managed through the Workspace's Version Control Service, you can now migrate this project from the SVN repository to the Workspace's built-in Git repository.

License Management Improvements

Optimize License Management with Enhanced Navigation and Labels

When it comes to license management, the search field and related sorting control will now appear only when more than seven licenses are in the listing to avoid redundancy. Also, license type labels have been added to help quickly distinguish differences between licenses in the listing.

Harness Design Improvements

Unlock More Efficient Harness Design Features and Easily Validate Projects

For Harness Design, the zoom level now sets the size of the model view's green box automatically. No need for manual adjustments. We've also added quick keyboard shortcuts for adding wires and placing bundles to streamline your workflow. Plus, you can easily validate your active harness project with the new validate button.

PCB Design Improvements

Simply Copy Room Format with Rotation

There is a new functionality of the ‘Copy Room Formats’ feature with the addition of an option to control whether or not the rotation of the chosen source room is copied to the desired destination room, avoiding the need for manual rotation corrections.

PCB Design Improvements

Add New Special Strings for Fabrication and Assembly Notes

You can now include a wider range of manufacturing and assembly parameters, such as layer counts, board dimensions, and object quantities directly into your fabrication and assembly notes. These additions are conveniently auto-calculated directly from the PCB, ensuring that your notes align with any design updates.

PCB Design Improvements

Freely Customize Paste Mask and Solder Mask

Altium has completed the custom pad stack feature, which includes the ability to freely customize pad, thermal relief, and most recently, paste and solder mask shapes. You now have the ability to independently control paste and solder mask shapes and can adapt to non-standard component footprints.

PCB Design Improvements

Conveniently Manage Part Choices for Each Component in Your Design

Altium has added the ability to manage part choices that are associated with each component in your design. The excluded part choice will still be in the project, however it will not appear in the generated BOM, nor will it be used in price calculations or as part of BOM checks

Circuit Simulation Improvements

Precisely Measure your Results with the New Simulation Data Viewer

The new Mixed-Simulation Data Viewer introduces higher waveform accuracy and measurement precision. This extended precision significantly reduces the likelihood of round-off errors, ensuring more accurate results when viewing simulation waveforms to improve the overall reliability of the simulation process.

Harness Design Improvements

Easily Keep Track of your Harness Wiring Diagrams

Altium has expanded support for additional multi-board features, which allows you to navigate to your wiring diagrams seamlessly from your multi-board schematic. You are now able to cross-probe directly from the corresponding harness object on the multi-board schematic to the Wiring Diagram of that harness design, minimizing the risk of mismatch and giving you more control over your multi-board design.

PCB Design Improvements

Precisely Position Silkscreen for Footprint Creation and PCB Manufacturing Preparation

The latest release simplifies the management of the silkscreen preparation process, offering the ability to effortlessly move or clip silkscreen objects at specific distances from exposed copper or solder mask openings. This eliminates the need for manual silkscreen work while creating footprints and PCB manufacturing preparation.

Circuit Simulation Improvements

Utilize the FSTIM Stimulus Model During Simulation

Altium's latest release adds simulation capabilities by providing expanded support for additional components. You are now able to add your digital file stimulus device (FSTIM) model primitives from PSpice for simulation in Altium to achieve high accuracy and efficiency in generating transient signals. This addition aligns with Altium's ongoing commitment to have a best-in-class SPICE simulator fully integrated within the Altium Designer environment.

Harness Design Improvements

Create Your Harness Cable Assembly Drawing Even More Precisely

This release introduces new tools for precise harness cable design, helping to reduce errors during assembly. You can now define the size of the harness covering relative to the enclosed bundle and choose between solid-style and patterned fills. Additionally, isometric views in the Layout Drawing give assemblers an additional viewpoint to enhance the presentation of harness components, enabling comprehensive communication of design intent and minimizing assembly errors.

Discover the hidden parts of your board with the pcb section view

The PCB section view provides precise insight into the layout and structure of your designs, like never before. when working with dense and complex PCBs the section view reveals the details within a PCB that are typically not visible. With full control over plane placement and color you can easily see all components, even smaller SMD components hiding under larger components or mechanical parts.

Custom Thermal Reliefs for Pads

As a continuation of our custom pad shape capabilities, it is now possible to add, remove, and edit, thermal relief spikes to anywhere on a pad, regardless of shape. This helps with soldering and avoids possible manufacturing problems like tombstoning.

Test Your Circuits With Real-Time Simulation Probes

The interactive probes feature is like using an oscilloscope right within Altium Designer. When this feature is enabled, any changes to probe placement, color, or other settings, are immediately reflected in the simulation results document.

Circuit Simulation support for Output Values in AC Analysis for Controlled Sources and Variable Passives

We’ve now added support for voltage and current controlled sources, functional sources and variable passive components for voltage, power and current output variables in the AC analysis. Great for audio projects, communication designs, and other design types. Plus we’ve added support for multi-bit ADC and ROM PSPICE digital model primitives as well as their timing models.

Live Traces & Fixed Aspect Ratios for Harness Wiring Diagram Objects

Live traces actively follow your cursor, showing you the way to your final wire destination. Allowing you to move more efficiently in the wiring diagram. Wiring diagram objects are now synced with the documents snap grid, bringing a new level of uniformity to the diagram.

New in Harness Design: 3D wireframe View And Ability to Add Models to Connection Points

In the Layout Drawing, it is now possible to show the Physical (3D) model for a connector as a wireframe view and also, for a connection point, display the Physical (3D) model of one of its associated parts.

Support For Workspace Defined Parameters & Bulk Edits For Components

For this release we have added support for workspace defined project parameters, bulk creation and edits of components, and enhanced side-by-side component revision comparison.

Added Support for Variable Passives & Global Nodes

This release of Altium Designer we’ve added support for more programmable logic array PSPICE digital primitives as well as support for digital models that use global nodes ($D_HI, $D_LO, $D_X), and variable passives.

Harness Design Improvements

The wiring diagram and layout drawing for harness projects has been given several new features to boost usability. We’ve added additional crimping capabilities, scaling options for documentation, visual connection lines for components and more.

PCB IMPROVEMENTS

Gerber Setup Layer Class Support

The Gerber Setup dialog now includes a Layer Classes section in its Layers to plot list. Using the checkbox for layer classes, you can quickly enable plotting for all the layers that belong to a specific layer class.

Circuit Simulation Improvements

Added Support for PSpice Digital models

This release of Altium Designer supports even more PSPICE digital model primitives. We’ve added support for the PINDLY, and CONSTRAINT Pspice digital behavioral model primitives as well as support for the DIGRRGEFAULT option.

Harness Design Improvements

Harness Design Improvements

In this release of Altium Designer we’ve added several new features to boost the usability of the harness wiring diagram and layout drawing. Including additional features for crimping, splices, and efficiency

DATA MANAGEMENT IMPROVEMENTS

Update to Collaboration and Reporting

To better convey a message to other project stakeholders, you now have the capability to copy and paste pictures into your comments. Also, exporting a project history report can now be easily done through the Reports menu.

HARNESS DESIGN IMPROVEMENTS

Additional Harness Design Capabilities

This release has added several improvements for both the harness wiring diagram and the Harness layout drawing. Some new capabilities include: parameters for twist and shield objects, crimping, additional 3D views, multiple connections from a single point and more…

PCB IMPROVEMENTS

New PCB Capabilities for Gerber and View Configuration

New PCB features allow you to load a stored view configuration file from the View Configuration Panel. Also, it is now possible to change the name for the Gerber Board Profile layer when using the new, unified Gerber/Gerber X2 dialog.

SIMULATION IMPROVEMENTS

New Extension For Power Integrity Analysis

Quickly assess the integrity of your power distribution network without the need for any specialized training with Power Analyzer by Keysight.

PRODUCT DESIGN IMPROVEMENTS

Multi-board support In MCAD CoDesigner

You are now able to transfer and sync your muli-board designs with your mechanical team using the MCAD CoDesigner.

PRODUCT DESIGN IMPROVEMENTS

New Harness Design Capabilities

Harness Design functionality allows you to create a full wiring harness design, from the individual pin-to-pin connections right through to manufacturing documentation.

Altium Designer 22

PCB Improvements

Custom Pad Shapes with Rounded/Chamfered Corners

Shape your pads the way you need in a matter of clicks. Extending the versatility of pad shapes, you can now customize the rounding of selected corners of pads that use either the Rounded Rectangle shape or the new Chamfered Rectangle shape.

PCB Improvements

Enhanced Gerber Setup Interface

Efficiency, simplicity and convenience are all delivered with the new UI for Gerber setup. Everything you need to prepare for Gerber generation is now at your fingertips in an intuitive setting.

SPICE SIMULATION IMPROVEMENTS

Additional Digital Models & Variant Support

Expanding the functionality available to you in the simulation arena, this release adds further support for PSPICE digital gates, timing and I/O models. Support for variants is also now available.

Data Management Improvements

Improved Manufacturer Part Search UI

The Manufacturer Part Search panel has long been a source of components for many users. Improvements have been made in this release that make it easier to use components in their libraries. This allows you to spend more time on development than on the process!

PCB Improvements

Additional Net Information for Tuning Objects

Detailed net information about tuning objects has been added in this release. Information about the maximum current and active resistance of accordion, sawtooth, and trombone objects is now available. More detail means it is less likely mistake will be made!

Schematic Capture Improvements

Quickly View Multi-function Pin Names

A large number of microcircuits have multi-functional pins. Working with them in Altium Designer has become even easier. This release introduces the ability to display the alternative pin names with just one click.

Schematic Capture Improvements

Improved Variant Management

Variant management is taken to the next level with this release. Time spent creating and editing variants is greatly reduced. Now you can design with large numbers of variants with streamlined ease and efficiency.

Data management improvements

BOM Commenting

Support for commenting has arrived in the BOM arena with this release. All stakeholders can actively discuss the BOM with ease and convenience, as enjoyed already with schematic and PCB documents.

Data Management Improvements

Alternative PCB Layouts in a Reuse Block

Reuse Blocks are enhanced further in this release. You can now define multiple, alternate PCB layouts for use with a single block. When placing a block, quickly switch layouts to suit your physical and performance needs.

Data Management Improvements

Design Reuse Functionality

Take the enhanced functionality of Reuse Blocks for a spin in this release, with the ability to place a block (or schematic snippet) as a sheet symbol. Your proven circuitry is placed on an auto-generated child sheet.

Schematic Capture Improvements

Mark Multiple Components as Fitted/Not Fitted

With this release it becomes even easier to work with multi-variant design projects. Now you can select multiple components for the active variant and mark them as Fitted/Not Fitted in a single action.

PCB Improvements

Custom Pad Shapes

Modern components often contain pads that are complex in shape. This release of Altium Designer gives you the ability to create custom pad shapes quickly and easily, with management similar to that of standard pads.

PCB Improvments

Ability to Change Tuning Object Layer Properties

Design of high-speed PCBs becomes easier with this latest release. Now, when you need to quickly move tuning elements to a different layer, you can do so from the Properties panel with a single click.

SPICE Simulation Improvements

Auto-assign Simulation Models for Components without Models

This latest version of Altium Designer makes schematic simulation even easier. System intelligence automatically recognizes SPICE models and assigns them to components from available sources.

Output Improvements

Control of Paste Mask Output for Variants

Output data needs to be as accurate as possible. For multi-variant designs you can now ensure that the paste mask is only displayed where it is really needed.

PCB Improvements

Quick Browsing of Parameters for a Board

Parametric information for your board is now conveniently available from the Properties panel. A single, convenient location with which to browse system, calculated and user-defined parameters, and place as needed in the form of special strings.

Schematic Capture Improvements

Active Links in Text

You can now specify active links to components and nets within a text frame object on a schematic. This handy navigation aid makes it much easier not only to read the document, but also to work with it.

Schematic Capture Improvements

Multifunctional pins

You will often see that modern ICs consist of multi-functional pins. In this latest version of Altium Designer it has become far easier and much more convenient to work with such components.

Schematic Capture Improvements

Custom Diff Pair Suffixes

Even more possibilities for creating differential pairs. Now you can use any postfixes to designate positive and negative net of a differential pair.

PCB Improvements

PCB Health Check Monitor

The condition of the PCB is under your control. A new intelligent feature that gives you confidence that your PCB is okay and complies with design rules.

Schematic Capture Improvements

Display of Alternate Component Parameters

Many schematic solutions are created as multivariant. With the new release, the schematic of multivariant project have become even more detailed and informative.

MultiBoard Improvements

Components from Altium 365

Working with multiboards has become easier and more convenient. Now you have more component sources at your disposal.

Data Мanagement Improvements

New Design Reuse Functionality

A reuse bloks help reduce development time and avoid errors. The new Design Reuse Panel and new functionality expands the possibilities for reuse blocks and snippets.

Further Enhancements to Sheet Cross-referencing

Schematic Capture Improvement

Adding cross-references to the project allows you to easily follow the connective flow of nets between the schematic sheets in a project. 

High-Speed Design Improvements

Relative Length Tuning

Designing high-speed PCB just got easier. The Length Tuning tools is now even more functionality. Complex tasks can now be solved even faster.

PCB Design Improvements

Enhanced UI for Via Stack Editing

The via editing mode is now even more convenient. Information about the via, editing its parameters and connections to polygons are now all in a new and simple, but familiar form.

Data Мanagement Improvements

Generic Components

The way from idea to real devices has become shorter. The new feature will reduce the time it takes to design a schematic.