Author Topic: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw  (Read 2021 times)

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Online iainwhite

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Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« on: December 16, 2017, 12:58:57 am »
Did any one else get a survey email from Peter Barnard at Farnell/element14 asking you to participate in a survey about CS?

"element14 and Altium are committed to continually improving CircuitStudio including our technical support operation and ease of purchase. As a customer who has downloaded the software for evaluation in the past we would love to hear about your experience and receive your feedback! "

There is also a prize draw for a 3 year extension to your license (presumably the support & vault access??)


I took the survey and was pretty harsh to them.
 

Offline takahidehimself

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2017, 01:20:34 am »
Yup, got one as well. Though my experience with support, from James H and Peter W, and in-app purchase has been good so in those regards I'm a happy user.

That said, I still keep going back to using DesignWorks at home even though I have CS license--habits are hard to break I guess--and Altium Designer at work, so I might not have encountered the flaws some of you have using the software as the primary tool.
 

Online iainwhite

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2017, 01:43:30 am »
I like the product personally.  It has quirks and it is annoying how some of the features have been "kneecapped" in the transition from AD.
My main irritation is the support and update process, which is poor.  Having Element14 be the first line of support is a real problem, as can be seen by numerous other posts on this sub-forum.  (e.g. guys waiting 4 weeks to get a license they paid for...)
 

Offline jc101

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2017, 03:09:20 am »
Yes had one of those.  My dealing with Farnell support has been pretty mixed, either some kind of help within a day or weeks go by.  When Altium have picked up on the issue it gets solved very quickly.

I tried the in-app purchases to buy the licence and renew my sub, they both failed without an error, fed that back too.  Perhaps Dave should send them a T-Shirt as I hope they like negative feedback, product itself I like, but the support model is horrible.
 

Offline kaz911

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2017, 05:31:09 am »
Agree with the above - 

biggest issue : Can't Import Altium files > v6?'ish - so to import many example files from fx. TI - you need to download Eagle or other format - and then try to import to CS - where it would be so nice just being able to import a real Altium V9+ file (schematic/pcb)
 

Offline Joel_l

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #5 on: December 16, 2017, 07:08:07 am »
Three years of free what? If you use the vault, then fine but other wise, not much of a prize. My continuing view is still,

It's a usable program written on an ancient code base, needs an update like designer just got.
Some basic features are missing that are present in even free software ( some are there but a pain, so missing to me ).
Some of the videos are good, but basic documentation is poor.
Making CS something less that Designer seemed to be a shotgun approach.

I should have known when I bought it in 2017 and there was a banner saying a major revision ( 2.0 ) was due by the end of 2016.

As it is, unless something substantial happens before my subscription runs out, I'll pass on renewing. I don't need the vault or vendor features.

Still holding out hope.....
 

Offline JamesH-AltiumOfficial

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2017, 10:13:21 pm »
Hi All,

Thank you for your survey feedback so far, as well as your feedback here! I just want to let you know that we are indeed very interested in your feedback for the next CircuitStudio updates. For example, as mentioned here, the importing of the latest binary version of Altium files hasn't been mentioned much so wasn't on my priority list, but we'll now consider this.

The Maintenance Subscription prize will allow newer versions of CircuitStudio to be used with your license, to the extended date.

Best regards,

James Harriman
Altium
 

Offline H.O

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2017, 11:00:51 pm »
So a substantial update ARE actually coming?
 
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Offline jmarkwolf

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2017, 11:36:06 pm »
Happy CS user here also. Although the change to the ribbon menu structure is an annoyance, after using Protel/Altium every day for over 20 years..

I've been able to load all Protel/Altium design databases and libraries without difficulty, including PcbDocs, going back to mid 90's Protel to current Altium Designer v17.1.

Newer Altium  PcbDocs must be saved off in v5 binary in order to import into CS, which isn't a problem provided you have access to the newer Altium Designer.

Looking forward to version upgrade.

 
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Offline mars01

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2017, 05:09:43 am »
Hi,

Background: I use Altium Designer at work, active subscription. At home I used to use Eagle but now I have a CS license which I bought wanting to have a rather homogeneous setup.  Win10 x64, Core I7, 12GB RAM, SSD, Geforce GT330M.

Since I see that someone from Altium is looking I will add my 2 cents.

But before that, I want to say that right now there is a very big difference in performance between AD <=17 and AD18 (which I enjoy at work). It may be now the time to either upgrade CS to 64bit code base / multithreading therefore adding 64bit performance, or even better: add more features and leave the CS performance as it is.

Those are the things that I'm missing or they nag me on CS:
- lack of "Find similar objects" feature - this is very useful when, for example, one wants to change the designator dimension's at once;
- make the Mechanical layers name changes persistent on the application level. I want to rename the mech layers to my own customized names and I don't want to be forced to rename them for each project; those names has to be reflected in the Gerber outputs;

- solve the bug that the application sometime is not remembering the way I setup the side panels (set to autohide); sometime when restoring to window from the maximized state, the panel that is docked on the side become by itself floating or the order of the panels is messed;
- remove the animation on the opening or closing of side panels set to auto-hide; make it appear and disappear instantaneous (hidden after a timeout or a mouse click elsewhere).

- in the library manager, if I reorder the columns they don't stay as I am setting them; it annoys me a lot to see that the first column is set to "Description" (and get restored every CS launch) and I want to be the Component Name column first. If I set something there, I want to always stay like set on the application level.
- in the component Properties (schematic side) I need a reference note with the library from where the part was placed in case I want to change something to it. I don't want to start searching everywhere when that info could be more easily accessible;
- there is a need for a IPC Footprint wizard. Ok, fine, the AD has it and CS can't. But in that case at least give us the possibility to import the components from other applications (like Ultra librarian or PCB library expert) without having to resort to hacks (like using Eagle as intermediary); Therefore bring scripting into CS.
- interactive routing should push and shove vias too, not only traces.

- in Eagle I used to set shortcuts for certain operations. It will be nice to be able to customize shortcut keys. I know about the accelerator keys but those I don't use even in Altium Designer (instead I am using my own shortcuts, or sequence of keys). Bring this into CS.

- allow CS to import the latest PcbDoc from AD. Or even better, there should be a single file format set (project, schematic, pcb, libraries) across Altium family of products.

- add a tool to place a adjustable (angle) protractor on the PCB (especially when we are in PCB library building footprints). It helps to build footprints that are a circular collection of pads. EasyEDA has it.

- solve the issue with the missing setting for the polygon pours. Everytime there is a change on PCB it keeps asking if you want to repour or make the polygons unpoured. Make it a setting in Preferences (like it is in AD). Actually on the same window popup there is a reference to "Jump to PCB preferences" in order to disable that popup window, but it doesn't work because there is no such a setting in the PCB Preferenes.


A very good thing will be to expand the printing support:
- have the ability to print layers in black and white and in negative to serve as exposure film when working with negative photosensitive dry film. The outline (and/or keepout layer or even better, one of the mech layers from a drop-down) should serve as a limit for negative conversion. You want to print only the negative of the artwork (on a 1:1 scale) not to invert the entire sheet.
- have the ability to scale the above print on X and Y axis (each one separate) in order to compensate the laser printer non-linearity in printing
- allow the artwork to be placed in a certain position on the page to be printed
- allow the signal layers to be printed in black with white holes in pads where the drill hole should be - that should be optional;
- add 3D PDF export


Conclusion: I understand that Altium has to maintain a gap between the high end product (AD) and entry level product (CS) but now the gap is big (in performance and in capabilities) and Altium could follow the direction set by others (eg Cadence) not only on price but on features, too. Keep the high speed stuff on AD and let CS be complete by adding common-sense things.

CS is a nice piece of software (on it's level), please make it nicer :)
« Last Edit: December 17, 2017, 05:41:42 am by mars01 »
 
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Offline arteitle

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2017, 03:45:51 am »
- there is a need for a IPC Footprint wizard. Ok, fine, the AD has it and CS can't. But in that case at least give us the possibility to import the components from other applications (like Ultra librarian or PCB library expert) without having to resort to hacks (like using Eagle as intermediary); Therefore bring scripting into CS.
One quick note, it's not too hard to use Library Expert Lite's IPC footprint generator with CS, see here for instructions: https://www.element14.com/community/thread/60761/l/ipc-compliant-footprint-wizard?displayFullThread=true

Aaron T.
 
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Offline mars01

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #11 on: December 19, 2017, 04:29:34 am »
One other thing, that it may be simple to implement, is that when I minimize the ribbon menu, I want to stay like this when I start again CircuitStudio.
At this moment, regardless of the state of the ribbon menu when I shutdown CS, at the next start it will be again expanded.

- a nice thing will be to be able to disable the net highlighting; it's very useful but in certain scenarios can be annoying.

« Last Edit: December 19, 2017, 04:31:57 am by mars01 »
 
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Offline voltsandjolts

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #12 on: December 21, 2017, 08:54:07 am »
Personally, I enjoy using CS and I think it is good value.
Of course users will always want more features but Altium needs to keep a feature gap between CS and AD so they can keep a price gap between them too.
I'm fine with that but we do need to see continual improvements over time to encourage users like myself to pay the maintenance fees.

I would very much like to see Altium commit to a CS release cycle.
For example, two releases per year, bigger changes in a summer release and smaller fixes in a winter release. Or something like that.
At the moment, I feel like I could pay for a year of maintenance and not see any updates (I know, your busy with AD18!)

CS is good, I'd like to see it improve in some areas and I'm happy to pay for that. Just give me some hope that your working on it!
 
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Offline JamesH-AltiumOfficial

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #13 on: December 22, 2017, 10:18:33 pm »
Hi again,

We've had some great survey feedback so far. And your rich feedback here, this is very helpful for our planning of the CircuitStudio updates in the new year. We'll let you know more information as soon as we're able to announce.

Personally I'd like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Prosperous and Happy New Year.

Best regards,

James Harriman
Altium
 
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Offline kaz911

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2017, 09:40:03 pm »
Hi James,

and a Merry Christmas to you.

Additional request: Git support for CS please as well. :) like AD18 - SVN is a PITA when many other things runs Git.

And lets hope for a V2 CS ASAP (Santa??)
 
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Offline mars01

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2017, 08:25:09 am »
Hi,

Previously I said that:
"- allow the signal layers to be printed in black with white holes in pads where the drill hole should be - that should be optional;"

It seems that this is already in place, you just need to dig deep and this can be done. Project Options -> Default Prints -> Select PCB Prints -> Configure. Here it can be added a printout making sure that the holes option is selected.

James, could you please mention to whoever is in charge of CS development to take into consideration to include in the next release of CS the ability to directly open an existing Altium library with extensions: SchLib and PcbLib by using the menu File -> Open Library? It's a small thing in the right direction.

Right now , the only way is to open an PCB project, right click on the Project name and then "Add existing to project" while the Open Library menu entry recognize only the integrated library, integrated library package and Eagle library.

Thank you!
 
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Offline 2N3055

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2017, 12:01:04 pm »
Hi,

Previously I said that:
"- allow the signal layers to be printed in black with white holes in pads where the drill hole should be - that should be optional;"

It seems that this is already in place, you just need to dig deep and this can be done. Project Options -> Default Prints -> Select PCB Prints -> Configure. Here it can be added a printout making sure that the holes option is selected.


Well it does show holes, but they are not transparent (white) in a  printout... If I print it it on a foil, it doesn't work right.
Holes should be completely white in a  printout.

Eagle even has a DRILLAID script that fills the holes, so all holes are represented with single small configurable diameter hole. That way you have centering holes for manual drilling..

Regards,
 Sinisa
 

Offline mars01

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2017, 01:08:27 pm »
What you say it is true if in the Page Setup the Color Set is set to Gray or Color.







But if you set it as Mono, then the hole is white and the pads are black.

 
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Offline 2N3055

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Re: Circuit Studio survey & prize draw
« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2017, 09:00:15 pm »
@mars01 Thank you very much, that's it!!

On thing that is bothering me is that you cannot create output template..
Predefined jobs in CAM processor in Eagle are big help,  because I can have predefined parameters for different types of boards, manufacturers, technologies...

Regards,

Sinisa
 
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