Author Topic: Altium Circuit Studio??  (Read 111955 times)

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Offline DerekG

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #50 on: January 25, 2015, 10:28:06 pm »
I don't know how accurate this is, but there's lots of information in this blog post:

https://crabtr.com/altium-circuit-maker-circuit-studio-features/

That links to Altium's webpage that discusses the introduction of Altium "Maintenance Updates" which are free for up to 3 years after purchase.

http://blog.live.altium.com/#Blogs/subscription-vs-maintenance-and-altium-designer-14.4

I believe Altium has had to do this to comply with Australia's (& other countries) Fair Trading Laws. Some previous releases have come out with some horrific bugs that were not fixed during the "first subscription year".

In recent years, purchasers have been able to argue that the product was not "fit for purpose" under these Fair Trading Laws, thereby forcing Altium (& others) to offer a later version to affected customers at no further charge.

I personally was affected with the purchase of Ver 6.7. During the subscription period, Ver 6.9 was offered for free, but this failed to address the LHS scrolling problem in full screen mode (that had been present since Protel Ver 2.8 some 10 years prior) & a new layer overlay problem presented itself that would only show the truth of complex designs in single layer mode.

I was promised in an email by Altium Sales Staff that the full screen scrolling mode had been "fixed" (from my previous versions of Protel 2.8 & DXP) when it wasn't. Altium's so called fix in full screen mode was to prevent the user removing the windows scroll bars. The problem did not present itself when the scroll bars were left active, hence Altium's fix was considered complete. However, the end result was no longer a true "full screen mode".

The end was a disgruntled user who looked around for alternative pcb design software. I now use professionally Proteus & DipTrace. I have used Altium 14 for contract work where the software has been supplied by the company offering the contract, but can say I don't enjoy using it.

I certainly support these new Fair Trading Laws that force Altium to fix major bugs at no further cost to the purchaser. For the record, these "fit for purpose" laws in Australia over-ride the Altium software agreement you are forced to agree to before using their software.
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Offline jcrabtr

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #51 on: January 26, 2015, 01:03:33 pm »
I don't know how accurate this is, but there's lots of information in this blog post:

https://crabtr.com/altium-circuit-maker-circuit-studio-features/

NO new info not already here on the forum.

Quote
based on what I’ve culled from press releases, websites, and hearsay and conjecture on various message boards:



Yep, I just wanted to collect all this information that's spread across several threads here, hinted at on Altium websites, mentioned in some Dave-rants, YouTube videos, blog posts, etc. I've linked explicitly to this thread now, and updated the table with zapta's and DerekG's suggestions. If there are any other errors or omissions, just let me know. Maybe one day Altium will just tell us the features!

DerekG, thanks for the information on the "updates".  I was under the impression that you still have to pay for the subscription, but now have the option to not "upgrade" if you just want bug fixes. Getting free bug fixes for 3 years sounds like a step in the right direction.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2015, 02:58:24 pm by jcrabtr »
 

Offline zapta

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #52 on: January 26, 2015, 03:40:13 pm »
Yep, I just wanted to collect all this information that's spread across several threads here, hinted at on Altium websites, mentioned in some Dave-rants, YouTube videos, blog posts, etc.

A table worth a thousand words.
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Offline DerekG

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #53 on: January 26, 2015, 09:32:39 pm »
DerekG, thanks for the information on the "updates".  I was under the impression that you still have to pay for the subscription, but now have the option to not "upgrade" if you just want bug fixes. Getting free bug fixes for 3 years sounds like a step in the right direction.

I asked one of the companies I contract to as to whether they had received any information from Altium regarding the "free bug fixes for 3 years". They keep everything from Altium in a file which includes both mail (via post) received plus copies of emails received. I could not locate anything in the file that mentioned this, so perhaps Altium is keeping it relatively quiet from their subscription customers on purpose?

Other current Altium customers might be able to shed more light on this.

Take another look at the Altium Forum comments in the link below. I'm surprised Altium did not ban all these customers from the Forum, just like they banned Dave from posting on it.

http://blog.live.altium.com/#Blogs/subscription-vs-maintenance-and-altium-designer-14.4

This is off topic for this thread, so I have started a new thread below:

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/altium/altium-'free-maintenance-updates'-for-3-years-were-you-advised/
« Last Edit: January 26, 2015, 10:04:12 pm by DerekG »
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Offline Omicron

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #54 on: January 28, 2015, 08:41:16 pm »
I just noticed this:

http://be.farnell.com/altium/11-100-15-1-e/circuitstudio-standalone-license/dp/2460554

The datasheet contains some more info:

http://www.farnell.com/datasheets/1881546.pdf

They also have an entry for the yearly maintenance subscription:

http://be.farnell.com/altium/11-004-15-1-e/circuitstudio-subscription-standalone/dp/2460555

Looks like they are gearing up to release...
« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 08:48:02 pm by Omicron »
 

Offline DerekG

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #55 on: January 28, 2015, 10:52:42 pm »
I just noticed this:
http://be.farnell.com/altium/11-100-15-1-e/circuitstudio-standalone-license/dp/2460554
Cost is 2.335,94 € (~US$2634) so is priced about US$350 less than predicted here:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/altium/altium-circuit-studio/msg583778/#msg583778

This includes the first year's subscription. On-going subscription price is listed as 386,72 € (~US$436). Does this only offer you technical support & not any later versions?

http://be.farnell.com/altium/11-004-15-1-e/circuitstudio-subscription-standalone/dp/2460555

If it offers you the latest version, the value in this software will depend on what has been culled out from the full Altium Designer package.

Interactive routing is offered, but no mention of auto-routing. No doubt the ability to export your netlist into Electra will not be on offer.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 11:02:19 pm by DerekG »
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Offline wreeve

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #56 on: January 29, 2015, 09:08:49 am »
Also listed as suitable for Mac and Linux! Might get me to use my iMac full time!
 

Offline jcrabtr

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #57 on: January 29, 2015, 03:46:32 pm »
It is also listed on Farnell for £1,868.75 + £309.38 subscription. It seems to be on all of the European/Farnell-related sites, but not on Newark. Also, the description says 'AD15' for what it's worth. I'll gladly pay that for Altium Designer!

http://uk.farnell.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=15001&urlLangId=44&langId=44&productId=97974195&storeId=10151
 

Offline DerekG

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #58 on: January 30, 2015, 01:47:45 am »
It is also listed on Farnell for £1,868.75 + £309.38 subscription.
http://uk.farnell.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=15001&urlLangId=44&langId=44&productId=97974195&storeId=10151
For your £1,868.75 investment, the first year's subscription is included:

"Standalone perpetual commercial license, AD15 single site with 1 year subscription"

Quote
It seems to be on all of the European/Farnell-related sites, but not on Newark.
Yes, this is explained on the datasheet:
http://www.farnell.com/datasheets/1881546.pdf

"CircuitStudio is sold exclusively through Farnell element14, a global distributor of technology products, services, and solutions for electronic system design, maintenance, and repair."

I'm beginning to think that Circuit Maker is dead. The same datasheet states:

"You will also have access to an active design engineer community from Farnell element14 to share ideas and collaborate with fellow designers."

The real reason behind Circuit Maker was to get the hacker/maker market & to share ideas between them. It looks like Farnell offered to handle this side of things on behalf of Altium & Altium jumped at it.
I also sat between Elvis & Bigfoot on the UFO.
 

Offline Rigby

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #59 on: January 30, 2015, 04:00:33 am »
I don't understand how the presence of Circuit Studio could mean that Circuit Maker is dead.

How do those two things affect one another in any way? 

They are two separate products with two separate target markets, two separate economic models, and two different openness requirements placed on the user.

Corellation does NOT equal causation.

The presence of one does not necessarily negate the presence of the other.
 

Offline zapta

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #60 on: January 30, 2015, 04:32:50 am »
I don't understand how the presence of Circuit Studio could mean that Circuit Maker is dead.

How do those two things affect one another in any way? 

They are two separate products with two separate target markets, two separate economic models, and two different openness requirements placed on the user.

Corellation does NOT equal causation.

The presence of one does not necessarily negate the presence of the other.

The speculation is that now that they have real revenue from Farnel they will not attack Eagle directly.  All we can do is wait and see.

BTW, if Studio indeed supports Linux and Mac OSX I don't see why Maker will not. That can be even stronger challenge to eagle.
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Offline DerekG

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #61 on: January 30, 2015, 04:47:02 am »
The speculation is that now that they have real revenue from Farnell they will not attack Eagle directly.
One wonders how much pressure Farnell put on the software programmers at EAGLE to bring their product into the 21st century ....... perhaps lots .......... with few results.

So, Farnell then look around for another option ............. which turns out to be:

"CircuitStudio allows you to easily import your existing designs from CadSoft EAGLE™ in a few easy steps."

http://www.farnell.com/datasheets/1881546.pdf

Inside intel is that Farnell actually approached Altium & not the other way around.
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Offline zapta

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #62 on: January 30, 2015, 06:39:26 am »
Inside intel is that Farnell actually approached Altium & not the other way around.

Do you know when it happened? Is this partnership a recent direction change or long time in the making?
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Offline hikariuk

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #63 on: January 30, 2015, 07:51:05 am »
BTW, if Studio indeed supports Linux and Mac OSX I don't see why Maker will not. That can be even stronger challenge to eagle.

Although on the Data Sheet it explicitly says it can import Eagle files, so they're obviously still targeting existing Eagle users.
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Offline DerekG

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #64 on: January 30, 2015, 11:02:07 am »
Inside intel is that Farnell actually approached Altium & not the other way around.

Do you know when it happened? Is this partnership a recent direction change or long time in the making?

Yes, it all happened quite quickly last year, not long after Altium announced it would release Circuit Maker for the Hacker/Maker market.

This is why I now believe that Altium will not put a lot of effort into the public release of Circuit Maker. Basic users will outgrow Circuit Maker pretty quickly & the answer from Altium will be to "upgrade to Circuit Studio by contacting your closest Farnell Office".
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Offline hikariuk

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #65 on: January 30, 2015, 12:28:22 pm »
This is why I now believe that Altium will not put a lot of effort into the public release of Circuit Maker. Basic users will outgrow Circuit Maker pretty quickly & the answer from Altium will be to "upgrade to Circuit Studio by contacting your closest Farnell Office".

Nearly £1,900 is a hell of an entry point cost for a basic user...
I write software.  I'd far rather be doing something else.
 

Offline Rigby

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #66 on: January 30, 2015, 05:21:38 pm »
The speculation is that now that they have real revenue from Farnel they will not attack Eagle directly.  All we can do is wait and see.

BTW, if Studio indeed supports Linux and Mac OSX I don't see why Maker will not. That can be even stronger challenge to eagle.

But I use Eagle all the time, now, and I am not a huge fan, and I want something better... I mean Eagle works, but feh.

I'm going to keep hope in CircuitMaker alive within myself, at least.  Altium NEED a free tool if they're ever going to capture people on the low end at all.  I would probably keep a constant 4-layer subscription for CM, myself.
 

Offline IconicPCB

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #67 on: January 30, 2015, 09:42:35 pm »
Rigby...

There is always DEX. I know it is being trashed by an "expert" but then I wonder what the expert would say about eagle.
 

Offline zapta

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #68 on: January 30, 2015, 09:49:38 pm »
But I use Eagle all the time, now, and I am not a huge fan, and I want something better... I mean Eagle works, but feh.

Same here, holding my breathe for Kicad.

There is always DEX. I know it is being trashed by an "expert" but then I wonder what the expert would say about eagle.

No single package install for Linux and Mac OSX, this makes it less attractive for open source projects.

I also would like to know what FE would say about eagle, diptrace and kicad.
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Offline Rigby

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #69 on: January 30, 2015, 10:29:45 pm »
Eagle is missing basic stuff that would stop him in his tracks. He just won't do without differential pair tools and 3D viewing of the board.  I'm starting some differential stuff and not having an easy way to correct trace length is gonna get old quick.  Not being able to visually verify clearances is annoying, too.
 

Offline IconicPCB

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #70 on: January 30, 2015, 10:35:01 pm »
Zapta,

I don’t see Esperanto displacing other languages any time soon.  Don't worry about Linux and OSX compatibility. Just do it for Yourself to paraphrase the Nike slogan. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nike_%28mythology%29 )
 

Offline zapta

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #71 on: January 30, 2015, 10:44:36 pm »
Zapta,

I don’t see Esperanto displacing other languages any time soon.  Don't worry about Linux and OSX compatibility. Just do it for Yourself to paraphrase the Nike slogan. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nike_%28mythology%29 )

Without Mac OSX I will have zero computing power and will have to draw the layout by hand ;-)

Note how the EDA packages that are popular in the maker market support all three platforms. It is for a reason.
Drain the swamp.
 

Offline Zad

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #72 on: February 01, 2015, 01:40:21 pm »
To be fair, if more people had to draw layouts by hand at some point in their careers, then they would learn a heck of a lot more about placement and routing!

Offline Bassman59

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #73 on: February 03, 2015, 07:45:27 pm »
Until someone working on KiCad decides to

1.)   Handle components in a sane manner...  I.E.  associating footprints to a part at library design time, not when you push to a PCB

That's actually been in Kicad for years. You don't have to use CvPCB (and I don't, because you're right, it's stupid.)

Each symbol has a "footprint" field, which you can populate with whatever you like. And recent versions of the symbol editor have a button you can press which will open the list of footprint libraries, so you can select the library and then select the footprint you want (graphically!) and then the footprint and the library it's in will show up in the symbol.

Just make sure you use your own symbol libraries and not the default/contributor libraries and you're good.

Quote
2.)   Provide stable binaries with some level of version control

They're working on that. Part of the discussion has been "when to declare something stable," and then whether to back-annotate patches to the "stable" release or just require the users to upgrade to a newer release. (Everyone seems to lead towards the latter.)

Quote
3.)  Version control the file formats

The formats are versioned. There has been discussion about this. One issue is: a user creates a board design with an older version of the tools. And then he shares the design with someone using a newer version, who saves it, which automatically upgrades the file format version. That friend then sends the design back, and now the originator can't open the design because his version of Kicad is too old.

So what to do? Most are in favor of telling the users, "upgrade to the newest version," and that requires stable binaries (hence the efforts). Nobody really wants to do the "save as old version" thing.

Quote
It is simply not going anywhere outside of the very small user base it has.   The idea of a tool is to save you time.   Given the activity you see on this and other KiCad forums just getting basic things working, like an up to date binary and a manageable library system,   it is simply unusable by anyone who wants to get things done.

Except that users ARE getting things done with it. And it does work. Certainly you have to deal with the library system, but it's actually not all that difficult, and I think I spent more timing thinking about my library organization than I did actually adding parts to it.
 

Offline wreeve

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Re: Altium Circuit Studio??
« Reply #74 on: February 03, 2015, 07:57:08 pm »
You can add it to your basket and get next day delivery.....I wonder what UPS will deliver!
 


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