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Offline jtowich

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Circuit Studio reboot
« on: July 03, 2016, 01:15:58 AM »
I've been using Circuit Studio for over a year, not real happy with Altium's lack of support. But today I got an email, on July 6 CS price will drop to $995 with $150 yearly maintenance. Those who have paid the full price (up to $3k) will get a lifetime subscription to updates, no maintenance fees ever. Long awaited update v1.2 was released and a promise of v2 by the end of the year.

Glad to see it not dying. Those who paid the full price may be irked, but the lifetime subscription should ease the pain. Hope Altium/Newark does a better job this round.
 
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Offline ebclr

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2016, 01:22:02 AM »
I would expand my money on this, instead of the Kid toy expensive pcb software proteus. At least Altium is prĂ³
 

Offline alexmackuk

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2016, 10:16:29 PM »
I paid the full price and I am not irked :).

I've been using it extensively since it was released  (and moaning at Altium to get behind it). The lifetime support, maintenance and upgrades seem like a pretty fair reward for being an early adopter.

I'm glad to see the product moving forward again and at <$1000 it is an absolute steal.

I was offered an upgrade to Altium Designer and I've used AD professionally when I'm on contract but to be honest I prefer the UI of Circuit Studio, I do not need the higher-end features of AD (and I can work around most limitations :-DD) and even at the previous prices the initial cost of AD and the ongoing/maintenance costs were just far more than I was willing to pay for my own use.

Oh, BTW I've got Proteus Level 3 with Advanced Simulation too and I shall probably be keeping that current to support legacy projects. Of the two I would say that Circuit Studio is more capable but Proteus is by no means bad and, specifically, the options for simulation in Proteus are way better. The reporting and diagnostics of Circuit Studio are superior and when managing complex track widths, pad-stacks, different clearances for different power rails and such the 'rules' based approach of CS/Altium is much easier to manage and control. As usual though with great power comes great complexity and I would say it is easier to screw up in CS. Oh, push routing is very nice too... but that has been promised soon in Proteus... although obviously it's already present and functional in CS.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2016, 10:28:01 PM by alexmackuk »
 

Offline ebclr

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2016, 01:37:58 AM »

Take a look at this

My 1st impression is good

https://www.quadcept.com
 

Offline evb149

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2016, 06:08:45 AM »
Interesting news.  I have a couple of questions which perhaps someone might kindly be able to help answer?

(a) I gather from some of the 2015 time-frame reviews that stability and feature completeness (missing essential and non working features) were early problems.  How stable and well featured is CS presently?

(b) I'm used to using full Altium Designer at work, so I'm wondering what most significantly I'd be missing if I ever should look into CS for personal use (I'm familiar with alternatives like EAGLE et. al.)?  I understand that STEP export and some features like that have been promised.  I don't care about the TASKING embedded IDE / FPGA stuff in AD.  PSPICE circuit simulation / SI & IBIS analysis are not critical but "would be nice".  Gerber viewer "ought" to be present but I guess this was missing in CS early on and maybe still is?  FLEX design capability as in AC is not essential but "would be nice".  AD menus vs. CS ribbon I can live with if there are good shortcut options now.  So what would I be most missing vs. AD in the present and known near future CS?

(c) Is CS an offline program or does it need the cloud for essential functions?  Free online component library/altium content vault?   Online altium live licensing or can you work offline for extended times after activating and checking out your license or something? 

(d) What happens if you do not pay the yearly maintenance fee?  Can you use whatever version of the program you last acquired while on maintenance forevermore without support / upgrades from ongoing maintenance?  Do you lose access to the use of the program version you had already obtained access to if your maintenance expires?  What could you do to get back on maintenance after some months or years of having not renewed the maintenance, is there a particular process / cost implication?

(e) What is the possibility to "lock in" a particular maintenance cost beyond the present paid year?  Can you pre-pay for 2, 3, 5 years of maintenance and be guaranteed of the rate/term, or is there simply no telling if next year the maintenance cost could rise to $1000/year or whatever?

(f) What are the system requirements?  Is XP or Windows 7 suporrted or is there any indication they're likely to push toward windows 8 / windows 10 only (which I do not prefer) soon?

(g) Are there to be any "levels" of CS features / versions or is it all based around a single initial price and single annual maintenance price for a single feature set / version?

(h) What about the library, is there a large "built" in offline library?  Access to "altium content vault" like full AD?  Is there now an IPC compatible footprint maker wizard like full AD (I heard CS did not at the start have this?)?

Thanks!
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 06:11:27 AM by evb149 »
 

Offline PCB.Wiz

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2016, 06:49:50 AM »
Interesting news.  I have a couple of questions which perhaps someone might kindly be able to help answer?

(a) I gather from some of the 2015 time-frame reviews that stability and feature completeness (missing essential and non working features) were early problems.  How stable and well featured is CS presently?

Keep in mind that missing essential and non working features may  well be deliberate product positioning decisions.
Altium do not want CS to eat AD's lunch. (but they do want to avoid users choosing something else, like Eagle, KiCad etc )

IIRC there was a comparison PDF at Element14*, and one removal that made me chuckle was circular holes only in CS, no slots.
Usually things like Scripts and Import/Export are also crippled, again it's all about turf protection.

Whenever you know a EDA vendor has a higher-end offering, you can be sure they carefully control the features missing in the low end offering.
A Classic case of  the old sales trick of " The BIG print giveth and the fine print taketh away"

Found it here
https://www.element14.com/community/docs/DOC-76216/l/circuitstudio-by-altium-vs-altium-designer-feature-and-specification-comparison
 

Online blueskull

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2016, 10:26:46 AM »
I hope it is true. Once at a time AD was dropped to $3k, and now it is back to $6k (both without mandatory 1 year subscription). And, their subscription marketing guys are awfully annoying. They totally called me at least 10 times asking me to buy further subscription which costs me $1k (original price $1.75k) per year while I do not really need the features. Eventually I was angry and I told them never call me again.
SIGSEGV is inevitable if you try to talk more than you know. If I say gibberish, keep in mind that my license plate is SIGSEGV.
 

Online Monkeh

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2016, 10:41:10 AM »
Interesting news.  I have a couple of questions which perhaps someone might kindly be able to help answer?

(a) I gather from some of the 2015 time-frame reviews that stability and feature completeness (missing essential and non working features) were early problems.  How stable and well featured is CS presently?

Keep in mind that missing essential and non working features may  well be deliberate product positioning decisions.
Altium do not want CS to eat AD's lunch. (but they do want to avoid users choosing something else, like Eagle, KiCad etc )

IIRC there was a comparison PDF at Element14*, and one removal that made me chuckle was circular holes only in CS, no slots.
Usually things like Scripts and Import/Export are also crippled, again it's all about turf protection.

Whenever you know a EDA vendor has a higher-end offering, you can be sure they carefully control the features missing in the low end offering.
A Classic case of  the old sales trick of " The BIG print giveth and the fine print taketh away"

Found it here
https://www.element14.com/community/docs/DOC-76216/l/circuitstudio-by-altium-vs-altium-designer-feature-and-specification-comparison

So if you pay for Circuit Studio you get less than Circuit Maker offers.

Hilarious.
 

Online blueskull

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2016, 10:51:18 AM »
The most thing I hate (from the PDF above) is multichannel design without room layout copying. Then what's the purpose?
SIGSEGV is inevitable if you try to talk more than you know. If I say gibberish, keep in mind that my license plate is SIGSEGV.
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2016, 10:53:41 AM »
Interesting news.  I have a couple of questions which perhaps someone might kindly be able to help answer?

(a) I gather from some of the 2015 time-frame reviews that stability and feature completeness (missing essential and non working features) were early problems.  How stable and well featured is CS presently?

Keep in mind that missing essential and non working features may  well be deliberate product positioning decisions.
Altium do not want CS to eat AD's lunch. (but they do want to avoid users choosing something else, like Eagle, KiCad etc )

IIRC there was a comparison PDF at Element14*, and one removal that made me chuckle was circular holes only in CS, no slots.
Usually things like Scripts and Import/Export are also crippled, again it's all about turf protection.

Whenever you know a EDA vendor has a higher-end offering, you can be sure they carefully control the features missing in the low end offering.
A Classic case of  the old sales trick of " The BIG print giveth and the fine print taketh away"

Found it here
https://www.element14.com/community/docs/DOC-76216/l/circuitstudio-by-altium-vs-altium-designer-feature-and-specification-comparison

So if you pay for Circuit Studio you get less than Circuit Maker offers.

Hilarious.

Don't believe everything you read. Slots are no problem in CS. It's miles better than anything I saw in CM.

Most of those "missing" features are gingerbread.
 

Online Monkeh

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2016, 10:54:29 AM »
Don't believe everything you read. Slots are no problem in CS. It's miles better than anything I saw in CM.

So they just can't make their mind up? I suppose that's not news.
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2016, 11:02:40 AM »
Don't believe everything you read. Slots are no problem in CS. It's miles better than anything I saw in CM.

So they just can't make their mind up? I suppose that's not news.

If Altium sticks with $1k for CS, they will kill the competition. What is there is meat and potatoes PCB design. This gets CS out of the pricing  valley of death. Before everyone bashes CS into the ground, I'd recommend a trying it. Between the vault, the ease of manual routing, autorouting, And documentation generation tools, there's a lot to like. Will you design cell phones on it? Of course not.
 

Offline PCB.Wiz

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2016, 11:42:45 AM »
Don't believe everything you read. Slots are no problem in CS. It's miles better than anything I saw in CM.

Most of those "missing" features are gingerbread.

Hmm, so do not believe the PDF's ?

What about important (non gingerbread) things like Shove on Trace move, and Scripting, and Import/Export ?

The more I field test KiCad's Shove router, the more I like it. (eg It has a rather smarter polygon-drag engine, than Mentor's shove router.)
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2016, 02:42:03 PM »
Don't believe everything you read. Slots are no problem in CS. It's miles better than anything I saw in CM.

Most of those "missing" features are gingerbread.

Hmm, so do not believe the PDF's ?

What about important (non gingerbread) things like Shove on Trace move, and Scripting, and Import/Export ?

The more I field test KiCad's Shove router, the more I like it. (eg It has a rather smarter polygon-drag engine, than Mentor's shove router.)

If you're talking slotted holes, I just made those today. Works fine. As for slotted pads, I'll check later.

The features to value proposition works for me at $1k. If it doesn't for you, fine. 

And behold: slotted pads.  And I managed to do it without instructions after 1 day on the job...

« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 03:41:24 PM by LabSpokane »
 

Offline PCB.Wiz

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2016, 03:39:56 PM »
If you're talking slotted holes, I just made those today. Works fine. As for slotted pads, I'll check later.

The features to value proposition works for me at $1k. If it doesn't for you, fine.
Given the inaccuracy of the PDFs, I was attempting to better define what that 'features to value proposition' actually is, on the real product.
Are these confirmed as missing (DOCs say they are not there, or limited)

Does CS have Shove Router ?
Does CS have scripting ?
What formats can CS import/Export ?
 

Offline LabSpokane

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #15 on: July 05, 2016, 04:07:06 PM »
If you're talking slotted holes, I just made those today. Works fine. As for slotted pads, I'll check later.

The features to value proposition works for me at $1k. If it doesn't for you, fine.
Given the inaccuracy of the PDFs, I was attempting to better define what that 'features to value proposition' actually is, on the real product.
Are these confirmed as missing (DOCs say they are not there, or limited)

Does CS have Shove Router ?
Does CS have scripting ?
What formats can CS import/Export ?

By "shove router" if you mean it automatically reroutes a trace while dragging it with the mouse, yes and it is brilliant.

No clue on the others.

If you really want to know all the details, just download it and request a 30 day demo license. I'm hoping the $995 is real. Compared to Eagle, that's just too good to be true.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2016, 04:11:08 PM by LabSpokane »
 

Offline PCB.Wiz

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #16 on: July 05, 2016, 04:17:23 PM »
By "shove router" if you mean it automatically reroutes a trace while dragging it with the mouse, yes and it is brilliant.

Shove routers push/shove other traces and vias out of the way, to make a path.
A routing tool that keeps clearance, but does not shove, is more sketch/guided routing.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #17 on: July 05, 2016, 05:31:32 PM »
I've been using Circuit Studio for over a year, not real happy with Altium's lack of support. But today I got an email, on July 6 CS price will drop to $995 with $150 yearly maintenance.

I don't like saying "I told them so" (no one would buy it at the price), but , I told them so  ;D
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #18 on: July 05, 2016, 05:41:42 PM »
Can Circuit Studio save and load Altium Designer files, and vice-versa?
If so I think I'm sold at $1k, it is the killer price point I told them over and over again would work.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #19 on: July 05, 2016, 05:42:17 PM »
Woah, no basic manufacturing DRC in CS?
Quote
Basic manufacturing rules Annular ring, acute angle, hole size, layer pairs, hole to
hole clearance, minimum solder mask sliver, silk to solder
mask, silk to silk, net antennae, silk to board region

 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #20 on: July 05, 2016, 05:48:48 PM »
I hope it is true. Once at a time AD was dropped to $3k, and now it is back to $6k (both without mandatory 1 year subscription).

I remember that day vividly!
Nick Martin called everyone into the canteen at the old Altium building at Frenches Forest as a said (close enough direct quote) "We are burning our bridges, we can't go back to high priced tools"
(They slashed prices by 75%)
Within 12 months the price was creeping back up to normal  ;D
http://www.eetimes.com/document.asp?doc_id=1311978

 

Offline janoc

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #21 on: July 05, 2016, 05:50:55 PM »

Take a look at this

My 1st impression is good

https://www.quadcept.com

Cheesy website that crashes browsers with all those stupid "slides" and videos, talks about "makers" and the top-most feature listed is - cloud (and subscription based licensing).

Sorry, first impression is - "don't wanna ..."

 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #22 on: July 05, 2016, 05:52:14 PM »
If you really want to know all the details, just download it and request a 30 day demo license. I'm hoping the $995 is real. Compared to Eagle, that's just too good to be true.

Even with the limitations compared to AD, yes, it blows Eagle out of the water.
Coincidental timing with Autodesk buying Eagle?
 

Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #23 on: July 05, 2016, 06:08:12 PM »
I wonder how scared PCB software manufacturers are that Kicad will become a viable alternative?
(I've not used it so no idea how close it's getting, but have seen plenty of decent PCBs done with it)
Youtube channel:Taking wierd stuff apart. Very apart.
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Offline PCB.Wiz

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Re: Circuit Studio reboot
« Reply #24 on: July 05, 2016, 06:13:44 PM »
Can Circuit Studio save and load Altium Designer files, and vice-versa?
Only with Caveats ( of course!)

Another forum has this (oct 2015)
"2. CS does not support the importation of AD14 file formats. Currently, we support anything AD10 and older to include PCAD (Along with just about all mainstream competitive formats). However, you will want to make sure that you load all of the importers from the Extensions and Updates panel in CS..."

Can you save back to AD10 from a AD14+ system ? (or save to the expected P-CAD format ?)
P-CAD (ACCEL_NETLIST looks a nice standard that can open in Eagle and kiCad).
Can CS export P-CAD ?
 


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