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Do you use auto-route for PCB layout packages?

Do you use an auto-router?

  • All the time!

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Sometimes

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Rarely

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Never!

    Votes: 0 0.0%

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Junior Member level 1
Jan 22, 2006
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How many of you use the auto-routing functions in your PCB layout packages?

I'm torn between using it or doing everything by hand.

I typically work with *very* low volume boards (3-4 max).

On on hand, I save a day of labor by going the auto-route route. On the other hand, manual labor looks so much nicer!

I'd like to hear what other people think.

- Nobody

Do you auto-route?

When i was working on a pcb, i do the autoroute, and try to edit the autorouted paths, but some experts route manually...

Do you auto-route?

I'm no expert but I never autoroute. You really have to work hard to get an autorouter to do the right thing. You have to segregate power from analog from digital from clock circuits. It does stupid things (like way too many vias and doesn't understand noise and interference). Off grid pads make a complete mess with autorouters. and so on.

Friends don't let friends autoroute


Re: Do you auto-route?

Autorouting is a selling point to upper management.

It has no value in the real world (specifically high speed electronics , Analog , and RF designs).

I've been doing layouts for 30 years (started out using tape at 4:1 scale),
Ive never used an autorouter. Itried it on numerous occasions with the 7 different
CAD packages I've used, and every one of them were JUNK.

Do you auto-route?

Junk is precisely what the autorouter will chuck out, especially if your not too used to it nor put in the ground work required to make it work properly.

Perhaps you need to try and use it some more, then make your own decision about using it.

I'll do 99.9% manually and if I get some awkward signals I need to put down in a hurry "then" I may try it, but usually only to show me the way and then I'll go over the trackign myself to ensure it's just right.

Re: Do you auto-route?

I use manual route for Critical Path or auto route otherwise

Re: Do you auto-route?

I dont find auto-route to be of much help ...
The software just doesn't understand the way my brain wants how the pcb to be routed ... i'm fed-up with it.
Sometimes it took me ages to wait for the software to complete routing all the connections.
As a conclusion ... auto-route is not a choice for me even during difficult time.

Do you auto-route?

i manually route the power rails, and some critical paths..but for signals i just let the autorouter do its work..but yeah, it there's definitely touch ups to do..but hey, if u set ur design rules properly..u could get some nice routes..

Re: Do you auto-route?

Hi All,

Firstly the critical signals need to be routed like say clock,address and data buses etc and other signals can be autorouted.



Re: Do you auto-route?

high speed, analog, power-ground, coupled lines, ... manual
rest of pcb just let the autorouter try it.

Re: Do you auto-route?

I use autorouter with low rules, to check good components placement


Do you auto-route?

I do single sided boards and the Autorouter isn't too good at understanding this fact in protel.

Its not that the boards are simple - its just cheaper to get single sided boards and use a few jumpers than using double sided boards.

Like others I sometimes use the autorouter to check component placement. But at the end of the day i've routed all my boards myself.


Re: Do you auto-route?

hmm.. I just use auto-route for some lines long and complicated, mostly at the end of design when I only got limited place, auto-route will look for the way. After auto-routed, I will delete it, and route it again by myself.
So in the end, mean the whole design whole have a single trace were auto-routed.
Auto-route just a guide, you cant depend on it to give you a good design.


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