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Old 03-27-2016, 09:32 AM   #1
enorbet
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Please Recommend Schematic Drawing Software


Greetings
Back in v13.37 days I recall attempting to get software to assist in the drawing of electronics schematics and I happened on FreeCAD. I seem to recall it being a bit of a pain to get working correctly, it was substantially behind new releases and had more than I need or want for schematics and lacked some features I would have preferred to have.

So I'm asking for any assistance by means of recommendation for something a bit more focused and possibly easier to compile. I am not against spending money on it so there is no need to limit responses to Free Only.

Also I realize I would get more responses in say Linux-General but for starters I'd prefer not separating out those requiring dependency resolving managers and/or systemd so at first anyway. I'd like this thread confined to Slackware responses.
 
Old 03-27-2016, 09:53 AM   #2
Gerard Lally
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Do you mean something like Dia, which has a Slackbuild?

Last edited by Gerard Lally; 03-27-2016 at 09:57 AM.
 
Old 03-27-2016, 10:07 AM   #3
enine
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kicad is a new popular one.

https://slackbuilds.org/repository/1...lopment/kicad/

Last edited by enine; 03-28-2016 at 11:33 AM.
 
Old 03-27-2016, 02:18 PM   #4
mralk3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gezley View Post
I use Dia for all my network diagrams. I also use Dia for my Minecraft schematics.
 
Old 03-27-2016, 04:01 PM   #5
pamu1
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Take a look at this :-)

Last edited by pamu1; 03-27-2016 at 04:03 PM.
 
Old 03-27-2016, 05:54 PM   #6
Richard Cranium
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BLUF (Bottom Line Up Front): I haven't used either of these. These are the result of a quick google search.

http://pcb.geda-project.org/

That also references a http://www.geda-project.org/ link, which may have all that you need. (Or *will* have all that you need.)
 
Old 03-28-2016, 10:45 AM   #7
vonbiber
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metapost

If you have tetex or texlive installed, you could try
metapost (http://tug.org/metapost.html) or pstricks.
They are both part of the distribution
 
Old 03-28-2016, 12:02 PM   #8
genss
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what was wrong with gEDA gschem when slackware leet was new ?

do you also need SPICE, or just drawing ?
 
Old 03-28-2016, 12:16 PM   #9
pchristy
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The last time I did any schematic / PCB work, I used Eagle: http://www.cadsoftusa.com/eagle-pcb-design-software/

Its available for Linux, Windows and Mac, and there's a free version! As I recall, it was relatively straight-forward to use, and because the PCB layout was part of the same package, it was fairly easy to move stuff from the schematic editor to the layout editor.

--
Pete
 
Old 03-28-2016, 02:08 PM   #10
checholalo
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For quick 2D drawings I use Qcad, easy to learn, easier to compile than Freecad, and it has a slackbuild.
 
Old 03-28-2016, 02:20 PM   #11
enorbet
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Sorry to be so slow to feedback but thanks to the varied response I'm checking all of these out thoroughly. One necessity for me is an app that has Vacuum Tube/Valve objects since any common cvhematic app will have OpAmps and discrete SS components, so I'm looking for a rather Old School approach. I will keep coming back here to report and will mark it "Solved" once I have found what I need. Thanks, everyone, for your much appreciated input. FWIW I have Googled many times over the years but personal recommendations count for more than search engine hit mechanics with specifics. Also, as I make point-to-point boards, I have no pressing need for PCB work.

Egit: Thanks vonbiber. I'm singling you out because I was very surprised that texlive was capable of all that, which now that I think of it is odd I was unaware since most of the scientific forums I visit employ LaTex. I'm hoping however for a simple drag 'n drop schematic template to make printable finished products fast and easy and have no need for any 3D components.

Last edited by enorbet; 03-28-2016 at 02:33 PM.
 
Old 03-28-2016, 02:36 PM   #12
astrogeek
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First, for extra credit, "Vacuum Tubes/Valves! Hey! I know what those are! I still have some!".

I seriously doubt that you will find anything with current component library support for those other than a few special devices.

You do not say if you need only schematic drawing ability, or if you need to generate PCB layouts from the schematics.

If you only need schematics then you could fairly easily use most any 2D CAD system to define your own device library or reusable objects of some sort, then populate your schematic with them as needed.

But if you need to go to PCB layout from the schematic, or use spice as someone mentioned, then you will likely need a genuine Schematic/Layout program with user defined device support - both Eagle and GEDA allow that without too much difficulty. You may even find some device libraries online for some vacuum devices that would save you having to define your own.

Over the years I have seen a few decent looking free-of-cost Schematic/PCB programs offered by some of the PCB fab houses, but they were all M$ only and tightly coupled to their suppliers as I recall - but may still be worth looking into.
 
Old 03-28-2016, 02:43 PM   #13
enorbet
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Thanks for your input astrogeek but I suppose you missed my post relating that I have no need for PCB work. Although there are many boutique amplifier companies these days I figured I'd likely have to create objects as templates for valves since I've lost touch with anyone "in the biz" who might share complete tube-work schematic software. It may take me months to finally decide as I intend a thorough workout for each since this aspect has become of prime importance to me lately as I am no longer tied down to client hardware and free to brainstorm a bit..
 
Old 03-28-2016, 02:55 PM   #14
moesasji
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Quote:
Originally Posted by astrogeek View Post
Over the years I have seen a few decent looking free-of-cost Schematic/PCB programs offered by some of the PCB fab houses, but they were all M$ only and tightly coupled to their suppliers as I recall - but may still be worth looking into.
The one I have used in the past to make PCBs is one of those, i.e. Designspark. It belongs to rs-components, but it is free to use and has no silly limitations on the size of the PCB in contrast to the earlier mentioned Eagle (for the free version). Unfortunately I don't recall whether or not I ran it under Wine or in a Virtual Machine. It did the jobs for me, although I'm tempted to look at KiCad next time around.
 
Old 03-28-2016, 03:06 PM   #15
astrogeek
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet View Post
Thanks for your input astrogeek but I suppose you missed my post relating that I have no need for PCB work.
That didn't jump out at me.

From some hard won experience I would say that whether you adapt a 2D CAD/Drawing program, or use a free or non-free special purpose schematic/layout program, you will find that some substantial learning curve and personalization will be required. As such, it is worth some effort deciding on a "best" software method or program for your actual uses, and sticking with it to make it work. Changing to something else later on is not likely to produce a suddenly simpler way of doing it, it will only cause you to lose ground gained and force you to start another learning curve. (Kind of like looking for the perfect Linux out-of-the-box... it doesn't exist - you have to pick one and refine it to your use.)

For non-specialized drawing programs you will need to define and maintain your own component libraries as drawing objects, and figure out how to best use them. The effort reuqired will depend mostly on the depth of the properties you desire for your use case(s).

For specialized schematic/layout programs you will need to find suitable device libraries, or learn how to define your own within the specific program context. This can take substantial effort itself, but you end up with a more durable result in the sense that you can easily extend those devices to new uses and newer software versions, (spice, unforeseen future layout requirements, etc.), and so retain the value of your labor much better.

Last edited by astrogeek; 03-28-2016 at 03:15 PM.
 
  


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