Author Topic: Altium 14 vs 18  (Read 2928 times)

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Offline labnet

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Altium 14 vs 18
« on: October 12, 2018, 07:11:58 am »
We have 5 licenses and went of subs at AD14.2 (quite a stable version), so have saved about $30k so far.
I had a quick look and it doesn't look like we are missing out on much. Any long term users think there are any big productivity improvements for low-medium complexity schematic/pcb layout work.
 

Offline mrpackethead

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2018, 07:19:57 am »
I'm asking the same question..   Vs 19 is coming out, and as yet, i'm not sure why i'd want to move.    ( we are on 17.1 ) when i pulled the plug on subscruptions becuase i could'tn see the value any longer.
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Offline dzseki

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2018, 07:30:23 am »
Sure you'll find people who think so, but I think it is just the same as with every other program, eg. for daily usage did Win 10 brought something strinkingly new over Win 7 (or Win XP)?
If you are into the newest FPGA or something probably it is a must, I don't know...
On the other hand at the company where I work a few older engineers still use PADS 3.5 (18 years old sw?) to design pinnacle analog circuits still...
The rest of us upgraded from Altium 09 to 18, menus are slightly different here and there, but it is about the same (I don't use any of the integration design flow crap), what I don't like about Altium was not getting any better anyway  :-//
 

Offline T3sl4co1l

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2018, 07:47:19 am »
18, and I'm hearing 19, have some interesting features, but yeah -- if you don't need them, you don't need them; it's absolutely possible to do real work all the way back to ADs09 (or earlier PCADs) if you have it, honestly!  Just a matter of whether the new features (and older bug fixes, when applicable) are worthwhile.

Tim
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Electronic design, from concept to prototype.
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Offline mrpackethead

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2018, 08:10:42 am »
I'f they wanted to charge abougt 1/3 of the price of teh subscriptions i'd probalby pay for it. 
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Offline Ice-Tea

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2018, 10:04:45 am »
Of the top of my head:

- ActiveBOM
- Support for flex boards
- As of AD18: I think assembly of several boards?
- 64-bit support? Especially of importance if you want larger designs I suppose.

Uhm.. Other stuff?
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Offline Gribo

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2018, 03:11:19 pm »
For me, the major benefit in newer Altium versions is Draftsman (Ver 16 and up). As for 18, I would wait for 19 or even 20 before upgrading.
 

Offline ajb

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2018, 07:19:58 pm »
AD18 does have support for multi-board projects, including validation between boards.  I haven't played with it yet, but it does look pretty neat.  Activeroute looks slick, but the demos don't show you the prep work in setting up design rules and constraints, so I don't know if it's anywhere near as useful as they make it look.

AD18 was frankly a bit of a disappointment, but mainly because everyone I think got their hopes up about how much of an improvement it was supposed to be.  It is definitely a step forward, but not as far as was hoped and there were also a few things that took a step back.  However, there has been more activity on Bugcrunch recently, so maybe getting AD18 into the world has allowed them to work on their backlog.  I would probably wait until AD19 to see what that brings.

When we were up for renewal this past summer I told our account rep outright that the subscription just plain wasn't worth the sticker price, and if we weren't going to pay that much to renew.  To their credit, they gave me a price I was willing to renew at.  If you've got five seats that are five years past renewal to dangle in front of them, you can probably work a pretty good deal. 
 

Offline mrpackethead

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2018, 07:24:01 pm »
AD18 does have support for multi-board projects, including validation between boards.  I haven't played with it yet, but it does look pretty neat.  Activeroute looks slick, but the demos don't show you the prep work in setting up design rules and constraints, so I don't know if it's anywhere near as useful as they make it look.

AD18 was frankly a bit of a disappointment, but mainly because everyone I think got their hopes up about how much of an improvement it was supposed to be.  It is definitely a step forward, but not as far as was hoped and there were also a few things that took a step back.  However, there has been more activity on Bugcrunch recently, so maybe getting AD18 into the world has allowed them to work on their backlog.  I would probably wait until AD19 to see what that brings.

When we were up for renewal this past summer I told our account rep outright that the subscription just plain wasn't worth the sticker price, and if we weren't going to pay that much to renew.  To their credit, they gave me a price I was willing to renew at.  If you've got five seats that are five years past renewal to dangle in front of them, you can probably work a pretty good deal.


The cost of changing software is not trivial. :-(  But 17.1 is doing what i need it to do.   
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Offline Ice-Tea

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2018, 06:31:06 am »
I told them a few times already the subscription is too much. And I finally let it lapse earlier this year. They never made an effort to offer me anything below the list price.

Pisses me of a bit...
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Offline Deridex

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2018, 07:27:20 am »
i had only my hands at AD 17.1 before we switched to AD 18.

I think they made a huge step forward in the userinterface. For me, the editing of groups is much easier now. Also it feels like some tasks perform faster.

If i had to choose between 17 and 18, i would go for 18. But i'm not sure if the improvements are worth the subscription.
 

Offline Ice-Tea

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2018, 08:58:06 am »
TBH is you're used to 17 and before, the UI changes are a bit a PITA.
eBay shop with all the gear you need!
FS: Agilent 54825A, R&S CMU200, CRTU, SMIQ06L, Marconi 6201B, Lecroy WP 950, 9354TM, 9354M, 9374L LC584A, Tek THS720P, TDS7154B, Anritsu MG3671A 2.75G I/Q RF gen, Keithley 238 SMU, HP 8642B, 8903A, 8110A, 8156A
 

Offline Deridex

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2018, 02:37:15 pm »
TBH is you're used to 17 and before, the UI changes are a bit a PITA.
Of course they are. If you are used to a interface, every major change causes troubles.
 

Offline SiliconWizard

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2018, 12:48:10 am »
TBH is you're used to 17 and before, the UI changes are a bit a PITA.

I've just evaluated AD18 recently.
Good lord. A PITA it is. Do not switch unless you absolutely have to. |O
 

Offline robertferanec

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2018, 03:03:22 pm »
I do not think it is necessary to keep updating/upgrading.

When I am designing boards, I still often work in AD14 even I installed and have used all the other AD versions (including AD18). I found it much easier for me to keep using the same version of AD - I know exactly what works, how it works, what to be careful about, I know what doesn't work and how to go around it. Using the same version of AD for years is just simpler, easier, faster and less frustrating.

PS: I also use AD18 to design some boards - I like some features (properties panel, filter, multiboard design, ...) and I am waiting for AD19 to test new features .... but it doesn't mean I can not live without it. Even the AD from 5 years ago was very good and you could design there any kind of board. Some people may argue, that older AD may be slower or less efficient - maybe in some special cases, but generally for most boards it's just fine.
 

Offline julianhigginson

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2018, 06:52:05 am »
At the end of the day, altium subscription is far less than the cost of the engineer that uses it... And really, you should be keeping your engineers up to date if you want them to feel valued.

Personally, I think draftsman is awesome. I use it all the time now. That's worth the update cost from 14 by itself.

And I like ad18. The was a learning curve, but really it was a few short periods of scratching my head each time I ran into a major change. And most of the time a quick Google solved it.

I like the new editing panel over the old editing dialog box. That said I was a heavy user of the explorer panel already, so it's not that different...
 

Online blueskull

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2018, 06:55:37 am »
I'm on 19.0.10, released just a few hours ago. And I still only use the feature set that was there since 6.9.
So what kept me on sub? Well, marketing BS, and the lure of 64-bit and a dark theme.
Will I keep on sub in 2020? Maybe not.
 

Offline Psi

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2018, 08:12:50 am »
Also, on the newer versions the tape measure tool works much better.
It stays in place showing your previous X and Y measurements until you clear it.
I really like that feature.
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Online Bud

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Re: Altium 14 vs 18
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2018, 08:46:25 pm »
That was in place in 17.x, wasn't it?
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