GUI and Navigator
Through the Navigator, you can access vital
information about any design: layer information, aperture data, net
connectivity, composites, and layer sets. You can set up layer structures by
tagging and moving layers into the appropriate order. Blind and buried layer
sets can be quickly and easily defined. Apertures can be selected, added,
changed, and even dropped into a specific location through drag-and-drop
You can access all analysis results for processes like Design/Manufacturing
Rules Checking, Design For Fabrication, Graphical Netlist Comparison, and even
Additionally, you have full access to the GerbTool command structure. You can
execute individual commands and build a quick “My Commands” list of those
commands which are used on a regular basis. Even macros can be accessed and
executed here. Again, all of this is performed from a centralized location,
virtually eliminating the need for menus and toolbars.
Support for More than Just Gerber
You will be pleased to find that GerbTool includes an Import Wizard that goes
beyond just importing Gerber data. Using the Import Wizard, you simply direct
GerbTool to the location of your data, and it does the rest by detecting the
various database formats (Gerber, Drill, Mill, HPGL, DXF, etc.) automatically.
If you still use 274D, it will even detect aperture table formats and convert
them as well. GerbTool still has format-specific interfaces for all supported
database types (Gerber, Barco DPF, DXF, HPGL & HPGL/2, Excellon, Sieb & Meyer,
IPC-D-356A, etc.) just in case you are interested in loading a single file or
re-loading existing files.
If you have already made the transition away from Gerber data towards a more
intelligent method of transfer data from Design to Manufacturing, the you will
be happy to find that GerbTool GT-Communicator, GT-Inspector, and GT-Designer
come standard with interfaces to formats such as ODB++, ODB++ XML, IPC-2581 (OffSpring).
There are optional interfaces also available for DirectCAM (Import Only), and
PADS ASCII (Import Only). These formats provide users of GerbTool with the
ability to achieve the maximum data transfer of design information to
manufacturing for improved quality and reliability during the fabrication of any
GerbTool supports 26 intrinsic
aperture types, with full support for ODB++™ intrinsic apertures. Make quick
work out of rounded rectangles, square thermals, thermal reliefs, and more.
Graphical Aperture Rule Creator
Let GerbTool eliminate the
hassle of reading "one-off" aperture list formats through the use of our new
graphical Aperture Rule Creator. Aperture lists are visually displayed, and you
can just point-and-click to define columns, shape types, etc. GerbTool
automatically builds your rule file, and lets you save it so it can be used
Everything you need to optimize a design for manufacturing is just a mouse-click
away with GerbTool. Functions such as Draw-to-Flash conversion, Teardropping,
converting those nasty special pad shapes (the ones that are always drawn) into
flashes, and more. You can even eliminate those 274X composites that your CAD
system might be outputting using our Flatten Composite function.
Automatic Drawn Pad Conversion will process an entire data sets
“hands-off” while using your Solder Mask layer as a guide to help eliminate
errors and increase performance.. Not only will Automatic Drawn Pad
Conversion process your data significantly faster than ever before, it will
do it with the added benefit of maintaining pads such as rounded rectangles
with standard intrinsic apertures – there is no need for custom apertures.
In cases were a conversion could not occur and error is logged within the
Analysis tree of the Navigator, where the user can review and correct as
Solder Mask Generator and Optimizer will create a perfect solder mask layer for you, using a
comprehensive set of rules that are designed to give you maximum possible
clearance while maintaining optimal coverage throughout your design. Special
support for fine-pitch pads is provided, with automatic generation of block
openings for those areas to prevent web (sliver) problems between pads.
Existing solder mask layers can also be optimized to conform to your rule
sets using the Solder Mask Optimizer.
Paste Mask Generator and Optimizer will be appreciated by any Designer and/or Stencil Manufacturer.
Like the Solder Mask Generator, it is driven by a comprehensive set of rules
that are designed to give you optimal reduction across a wide variety of pad
shapes and sizes. Special support for fine-pitch pads allows for independent
X and Y reductions to eliminate paste build-up between pads. If you already
have a paste mask layer but are not satisfied with it, let the Paste Mask
Optimizer rework it to conform to your rules.
Stencil Enhancements feature
was first introduced in GerbTool version 14. In working with some of our
existing stencil users we have further optimized the Stencil Enhancement
feature to be more flexible in its ability to accommodate a wide range of
processing techniques. Originally the Stencil Enhancement feature was
designed to work in conjunction with the Paste Mask Generator/Optimizer;
however there are times when the need to work from an existing paste mask
layer, without any optimization, is needed to enhance those openings
necessary so as to comply with your customers requirements. Now you can
increase or decrease openings while simultaneously adjusting the shape
configuration of a particular pad-pair. In addition, rounded corners can be
applied to all enhanced shapes. You will also benefit from the ability to
work with either percentages or physical amounts when developing your rules
for pad-pair enhancement. You can now “justify” your enhanced openings along
any edge of the copper pad that the opening is associated with.
is simple and straightforward in GerbTool. You have the option of working
fully automatic, letting GerbTool calculate copies based upon various
spacing rules, or performing a more traditional lay-up based on offset
values from the origin. As an added bonus, GerbTool has the ability to
quickly step-and-repeat more than one design. All of this will help you to
create assembly panel arrays quickly and efficiently.
GerbTool provides class-leading
performance with HyperNETLIST generation. Even the toughest designs can be
processed in a matter of just a few minutes. For example a 12”x12” 16-layer
board design with 4mil traces on 4mil spaces can be processed in approximately
10-minutes on a 3Ghz P4 based PC, as compared to 30-45 minutes of our typical
competitors. This kind of performance puts GerbTool on par with systems costly
tens of thousands of dollars more.
MCM/LTCC Layer Stack-Up means that users can perform a Netlist Generation on their ceramic or
foil-based designs. Unlike competitive systems that are limited to just
Gerber layers representing insulators, GerbTool allows you to specify Gerber
or NC layers as insulators, accommodating a wider array of data input from
various CAD systems.
Using GerbTool's Graphical Netlist Compare you can finally get feedback that
makes sense. Some competitive tools only provide you with a generic ASCII text
reports; with GerbTool you can see your problems on the screen. Netlist compare
finds Shorts, Opens, Nets without Copper, No External Net Points, and Test Pad
Size Differences. Each violation is easily accessible through the Navigator.
Pin-Point Error capabilities help speed the process of
troubleshooting problems. Mere graphical rendering of the errors isn’t
always enough particularly on more complex nets. Users will appreciate
GerbTool’s ability to track down the actual location of Shorts and Opens.
The faster you can locate your problem the sooner you can resolve it and get
your design out for production.
Net access allows users to graphically see how a set of external net points
might compare with an internal net. This information, when combined with
Pin-Point Errors, can dramatically aid in your troubleshooting process.
GerbTool includes a very comprehensive dynamic analysis “suite” which covers
Design Information, Design Rules Checking or Manufacturing Rules Checking,
Design for Fabrication, Netlist Comparison, and even Embedded Passive Checking.
You are provided with 75+ checks to help insure that a given design is "manufacturable."
The “dynamic checklist” environment allows for "single-pass"
testing of an entire design, even if you want to check for 5 mil spacing on the
top and bottom sides, but need 8 mil spacing on the internal layers.
Design Information Analysis provides 25 “quick” board level
queries. These queries are used primarily for a broad overview of any given
design for quoting purposes. All queries are reported back on a
layer-by-layer basis. Some of the more popular checks include Minimum Air
Gap, Minimum Trace Width, Hole Counts, Board Size, and Conductive Layer
Count. Field Applications Engineers should find these new features
particularly useful for the purposes of quoting new jobs and putting
together a design summary prior to submitting a job to production.
DRC/MRC Analysis consists of typical checks like Trace-to-Trace,
Trace-to-Pad, Pad-to-Pad, Drill-to-Pad, Drill-to-Plane, Minimum Trace Width,
Solder Mask Spacing and Annular Ring Clearances for pads and drills, SMD
Pitch & Spacing, Silkscreen on Pads, etc.
DFF Analysis offers more manufacturing-oriented checks like Acid
Traps, Copper Slivers, Solder Mask Slivers, Solder Mask Bridging, Starved &
Isolated Thermals, Pin Hole Detection, Layer Registration, Resist Slivers
detection, and more.
Graphical Netlist Comparison rounds out the suite, allowing you to
cover all of your checking needs within one environment.
Passive Analysis (Optional)
provides verification support to the growing Embedded Passive market.
Designers no longer need to agonize over a lack of verification capabilities
within their CAD systems when they design with passive resistors. GerbTool
will verify such aspects of passive devises as Resistor-to-Terminator
Alignment, Minimum Overlap, Termination Pad Width and Extension, and more.
You can work with either Additive or Subtractive passive materials. We've
even added utilities for verifying your resistor values, and output reports
designed to help your fabricator during production.
NC Drill & Mill
completely new NC Drill and Mill support will finish off your tooling processes
with features such as:
Advanced Tool Table
Support provides total control over drill charts; supports plated and
unplated tools for increased compatibility with today's CAD systems; mixed
tables, supporting both drill and mill tools, can now be generated for increased
compatibility with modern NC equipment. Define NC Feeds and Speeds, and Plunge
and Extract Rates, to accomodate a wide range of material usage and stack-up
Multiple Tool Tables
support designs with blind & buried vias; plated versus non-plated drill
layers with separate tool tables can be accomodated, while still maintaining yet
another table for milling; fabricators can now have standardized tool tables
that are built around their shop floor tooling, and map a customer's tool
information to their standard tables with ease.
NC Compensation Index
Tables allow you to control the compensation index for each tool,
allowing for support of unique requirements such as finish sanding, and allows
the NC operator to make minor adjustments at the machine, rather than sending
the job back to CAM for reprocessing.
NC Tool Linking & Maximum
Hits increases the life of old equipment that does not have automatic
tool break detection or automatic linking. Change tools automatically with no
intervention from the operator.
Tool Reordering for Export
allows you to change the export order of your tools to accomodate specific shop
processes. Easily adapt a customer-provided tool list to your shop-defined tool
User-Defined Break Tabs
allow you to build custom break tab libraries by saving your definitions and
reloading as needed in new jobs. Support for 5 different tab types: simple,
stitched, double-stitched, crown, and crown break with stitching. Place tabs on
linear segments, arcs, or circles -- with or without compensation.
Interactive Milling allows
you to create mill paths using standard "draw" and "edit" commands, even
using arcs to provide smooth, flowing mill paths on flex designs or
irregular-shaped boards. Move data back and forth between Gerber and NC layers;
GerbTool will automatically make the translation.
Drilled Text allows you to
drill part numbers, job numbers, etc. into your panels, utilizing the "canned"
feature within the Excellon or Sieb & Meyer format to allow for automatic
compensation of tool size.
Operator Messages & Stop
Commands allow CAM operators to stop machines and/or prompt NC
operators with specific messages while a job is in process.
Advanced Panelization (Optional)
GerbTool's Advanced Panelization provides a fully self-contained
environment that lets you store an unlimited number of panel templates. You can
build templates for each of your shop's standard panel sizes, so you'll never
have to define another panel configuration again! Multi-job panelization has
become more and more popular for optimizing tooling output for prototypes,
limited piece count production, and assembly panels. GerbTool supports stepping
and repeating multiple jobs within a single panel.
Different Robber (Galvanic) Bars, Venting, and Thieving patterns can be
defined for as many layers as necessary through the use of layer sets. Venting
and Thieving supports solid, dot, hatch, and starburst patterns on any layer --
GerbTool can accommodate positive and negative polarities with ease.
All of these functions are performed quickly and efficiently, without the
hassle of separate editors, special symbols, and complex user interfaces.
Coupons, tooling holes, title blocks, and even your one-up designs are just .GTD
databases. Combine as many as you like in whatever configuration you like--the
possibilities are unlimited!
Hotkey Compatibility Mode
GerbTool's Compatibility Mode
emulates the hotkeys from CAM350™ and CAMMaster™, to help new users make the
transition to GerbTool more easily.
User Configurable Toolbars
In addition to the improved
Navigator, GerbTool takes toolbar usage to the next level by allowing
customization of any of the current toolbars found within the product. Most of
the menu commands have button equivalents, which you can place anywhere on the
screen for easy access. The result is an environment that you can tailor to your
Automation and Scripting
Automation is the ultimate goal in
almost any environment, be it design or manufacturing, and GerbTool will not let
you down. For quick and simple scripting, GerbTool offers traditional macro
records and playbacks. But for more advanced environments, like fabrication
shops, you will find a full drag-and-drop macro developer environment that
enables anyone to produce high quality macros with ease. Our macro developer
even comes complete with a built-in debugger at no additional charge.