2021 Halloween Tips and Treats

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Shorter days, falling leaves, and pumpkin spice EVERYTHING. That means it’s time for our 2021 Halloween Tips and Treats! Our team loves stirring up their cauldron of tips and treats to help you with your most chilling design challenges. We’ve brought you spooktacular tips and treats for E3.series and CR-8000 – give them a try – if you dare.

E3.series Tips and Treats

Display your Options and Variants that are ON and OFF in different colors

Orange, purple, and black. E3.series has a setting for that! E3.series can include design variation in your projects using options and variants. This capability is useful for projects that have a master structure with different feature options. With these types of projects, it can be helpful to see which objects are in different options and variants. Enabling the Options/Variants Display settings makes that possible. Users can assign specific colors to objects based on whether they are objects with or without options and variants. You can also assign colors based on the state of the option or variant. Users can print and save projects with these displays colors. We dare you to watch this video showing the different Options/Variants Display color settings. Who knows, it might even possess you to try something new.

CR-8000 Tips and Treats

As we continue through the list of Halloween Tips and Treats, let’s see what we can conjure up for CR-8000.

Reporting all wire widths by layer using CR-8000 Design Force

Users have been asking if it is possible to output a report of the wire width for each routed trace by layer. The resounding answer is YES! Using CR-8000 Design Force, users can create an Object Filter to select only traces on each layer. From there, you can generate a report that reflects the information using the utility Pen Width. So with a few clicks, the engineer has a quick way to report the number of traces and their widths for each conductive layer. Take a look at the video to see just how scary-simple it really is.

Intelligent PDF in CR-8000 Design Force

There are some pretty spooktacular utilities in CR-8000 Design Force. For example, the Intelligent PDF with Component and Pin Bookmarks is an enormous time-saver. Have you spent countless hours visually searching through a PDF for a specific capacitor? The ability to search the PDF for a specific reference designator saves valuable time and frustration. The PDF output also supports bookmarks as well as pop-up windows with net/component information. Just imagine how hair-raising it would be to have your entire circuit contained in a single PDF file. The Plot tool can now generate intelligent multi-page PDFs directly from Design Force as well. So the next time you need to output your completed design package, give this a try. The video shows you how it works.

Economic Component Placement in CR-8000

Placing components is a fundamental operation in schematic design. It can sometimes pose a frightening challenge from an economic perspective. Usually, purchasing departments will avoid purchasing the same component from different manufacturers since ordering parts in bulk is more cost-efficient. To tackle this challenge, CR-8000 Design Gateway introduces a new function in 2021 that looks for parts already placed in your circuit.

Take a 470pF capacitor, for example, with 50V MAX voltage. You have already placed some of those capacitors in your schematic. Now you want to place another one, and you open the Component Panel. After setting the filter to Capacitor, you type in your desired values: 470pF and 50V. Design Gateway finds two capacitors matching your conditions, and both are almost identical, as most attributes are the same. To figure out which capacitor has been placed already, activate Search in circuit underneath the Search result/Parts select list, and Design Gateway will only display components already in use by this schematic. Nothing here to be scared of! Watch the video to learn how it works.

Time on Your Hands

Don’t let the cobwebs settle on these 2021 Halloween tips and treats before you have a chance to try them for yourself. With all the time you save, you’ll have plenty of extra time for stirring up some ghoulish treats of your own. Happy Halloween!

Laura Mirto
Laura Mirto
Applications Engineer
Laura Mirto is relatively new to the E3.series applications engineering team. Her primary role includes providing hotline support and helping customers to use the software more efficiently. One of Laura's favorite hobbies is arts and crafts; she is always up for learning a new art form.