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Wednesday, July 08th

10 Tools & Articles Every PCB Designer Should Have In Their Toolbox


PCB Creator

PCB Creator

By now, 2015 may be a distant memory. But for us at Bay Area Circuits, 2015 was a year full of interesting articles and updates to our most frequently used engineering tools. We’ve got a lot of useful new content coming your way in 2016, but in the meantime, here is a compilation of the top ten most viewed tools, guides, and blog posts from the Bay Area Circuits website for 2015.



10. Bare Printed Circuit Board Electrical Test

This blog post finished strong in 2014 holding the eighth place.  Good to see it is still of solid interest in 2015. This blog post reviews the various electrical test methods for circuit boards and the IPC quality standards. More

9. Introduction to Drilling and Vias

This blog post was originally published in June of 2014 and didn’t make the top ten that year. The post answers questions such as, “What is aspect ratio?” and “What is a via?” as well as other important basics of drilling. More

8. Cost Determining Factors to Consider When Quoting PCBs Part 1

This is another blog post from early 2014 that didn’t make our top ten last year. Part 1 of 2: This blog post covers the major factors that that engineers and electronics manufacturers need to know about what drives the cost of a PCB. More

7. An Overview of LPI Soldermask and the PCB Manufacturing Process

This blog post was published in January 2015 and makes a strong representation on the year’s top ten, providing details of the manufacturing process and many of the most important measurements and key specifications you need to know. More

6. Free Gerber Viewer

This was an informational page we replaced on our website in 2015.  At one time we recommended a specific Gerber Viewer that was a software download. Today we highly recommend you use our InstantDFM tool for Gerber verification. More

5. Printed Circuit Board Finishes

This detailed blog post came in at #3 in 2014.  The final finish that is used in PCB manufacturing is a question on every single order.  We expect we will see this one in the top 10 every year and have even added a surface finish chart for reference. More

4. PCB Array Calculator

This frequently used tool finished second in our top ten for 2014.  It is a favorite for engineers that want to get a great visual representation of their single PCB in a multi-array format.  Check it out if you haven’t already! More

3. DXF to Gerber Conversion Guide

This free download moves up from the fourth spot in 2014.  The guide was downloaded over 3,000 times in 2015. More

2. InstantDFM

Moving up seven spots from number nine in 2014, is our popular InstantDFM tool.   The only fully-automated, online Gerber review system that shows you results on-screen, and in usually less than a minute. More

1. PCB Creator

When it comes to PCB design, once again our popular and free PCB design software makes a strong representation at the top spot. It  makes sense though, its PCB design software that is easy to use and its free. Downloaded almost 7,000 times in 2015.  Nice job PCB Creator! More


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