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Schematic Drawing Programs

5/26/1999 10:38 PM
Pete Schematic Drawing Programs
I'm looking for a decent schematic drawing program that doesn't cost the earth. Any suggestions of what you use to draw them up?  
Generally I'd like to see a program that  
- easy to use (wouldn't we all?)  
- can paste circuits into a graphics editor to convert into a gif  
- decent set of parts libraries and that you can also make your own parts  
- perhaps it could integrate with a pcb drawing program as well?  
Any help you guys could give would be great  
5/27/1999 7:11 AM
Tobias Karlsson

Take a look at;  
I think it includes the options you mentioned.  
Tobias Karlsson in Sweden
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5/27/1999 9:10 PM
Steve A.

    For a reasonably priced CAD program I recommend TurboCAD. I'd been trying to use draw and flowcharting programs (CorelDraw and CorelFlow) to draw up simple schematics for many years and those programs would keep crashing on me...  
    One of the features that sold me on TurboCAD was the symbol libraries (which are simply CAD files in their own folder). You can use the symbols that come on the CD or draw up your own. With a symbol library open you just click on the item you want and then click where you want it pasted into the drawing. You can then scale it to the appropriate size by typing in x/y multipliers on the edit bar, or dragging a corner of the object. The user interface is very intuitive and another feature I use extensively is the "group" and "ungroup" commands. Like if you have already drawn up one tone stack you can group it together and then copy it to another location in the schematic. (By grouping it together, you don't have to worry about losing the slope resistor or whatever. You do need to ungroup it if you want to edit many of the properties.)  
    As for interfacing with a pcb drawing program, I doubt if they added that feature to the newer versions (I'm still tooling away with version 3.05). The newer versions support more export formats (like GIF and JPG, I believe) which was one drawback of the older versions.  
    Mayura Draw is a nice little shareware program, but my two gripes are lack of MDI support (you can only have one file open at a time) and the zoom function is not as intuitive as I'd like; "keypad [+] to zoom in, keypad [—] to zoom out" has been the unofficial standard for many years, and with the zoom tool selected left click should zoom in on the spot you select while right click should zoom out. Programs that follow that standard are very easy to navigate around in. (To be fair, even the new version of Adobe Acrobat does not support my idea of "intelligent zoom"...) Oh, my third gripe? Mayura Draw does not use the standard clipboard to cut and paste, nor can you cut and paste objects from one instance of MDraw to another (which would be one way to get around the lack of MDI support- you open up two instances (windows) of Mayura Draw and move objects from one to the other). Hopefully if enough people mail in the $15 to register, maybe they will add in some of these features in an upgrade...  
Steve Ahola
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