DownStream Techonolgies - Solutions for Post Processing PCB Designs

Optional Functionality

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Design Analyzer

The sophisticated Design Analyzer facilitates matching features within a PCB design, such as min trace width/spacing, number of layers, board size, and drill/via technologies, to a specific PCB vendor. This guarantees designs submitted to a vendor can be fabricated without any hidden costs or unexpected delays. The Design Analyzer also generates a report containing all information required by a board vendor to estimate the cost and delivery of the fabricated PCB. Working collaboratively with the report in hand, PCB fabricators can make recommendations for design changes that result in significant cost and time savings while maintaining design intent.

The Design Analyzer bridges the gap between engineer and PCB fabricator by extracting key information about the PCB and presenting it in an easy to read report. This report is compared against the vendor’s capabilities to ensure the vendor can fabricate the PCB.

Design Analyzer

DFF/DFM Analysis

By implementing the DFF functionality into your current process, you are ensuring the design can be manufactured quickly and accurately. DFF performs over 80 essential bare-board analysis checks, including fabrication, silk screen, power and ground, signal layers, drill, soldermask, and many more.

Locate, identify and instantly amend all violations before submitting the design for fabrication, not after. DFF automatically checks for acid traps, soldermask slivers, copper slivers, starved thermals, soldermask coverage, and more. Making sure the Soldermask data is generated using proper clearances, ensuring that there are no potential Solder Bridge conditions, and fixing potential Acid Traps will eliminate bottlenecks in the CAM department of any fabrication shop.

  • Analysis results are graphically displayed in a simple, easy-to-follow format
  • Violations can be immediately viewed and potential problems instantly fixed
  • Analysis checks take only seconds... even on complex boards
  • Design data is maintained by locating errors in the design database (using Crossprobing) and making appropriate alterations

Performing DFF analysis functions during design keeps the designer in control of the database and the changes being made. Today, fabricators must manipulate design files in order to produce successful bare-boards. Having the CAM engineer performing DFF analysis is an advantage as well. This would ensure no errors were overlooked and manufacturing excellence can be achieved.

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Streams Rule Checking and DFF Analysis

Streams Rule Checking is designed to streamline the setup, execution, and verification of Design Analysis.  Run Design Rule Checking (DRC), Design for Manufacturing (DFF, DFM) and Netlist Comparison together in one checklist.  Create, save, and recall multiple "Streams" based on design technology, and/or manufacturing capabilities.  Run differing analysis on High Technology areas such as BGA or Wire Bond, and run standard analysis on the rest of the design, all from one "Stream".

You can define as many analysis areas as desired. Errors can be quickly verified by charting the results. You are no longer required to view each individual error. Charting of results allow you to quickly determine what, if any, changes need to be made to the design database. You can then crossprobe the results back into your design database, repair the original (or actual) design rather than the Gerber layers.  This allows you to maintain database integrity.

  • Create one set-up for DRC, DFF and Netlist Comparison
  • Save multiple "streams" based on technology, manufacturing capabilities or customer requirements to be used on future designs
  • Execute separate analysis on discrete areas or different layers of the design
  • View errors individually or in groups


Dynamic Crossprobing functionality is available to PADS Layout, Expedition, and Allegro® Windows-based PCB design solutions. When using Crossprobing, the user can locate design errors (using DRC, DFF, DFM, and Streams) and quickly pinpoint the exact location of those errors in their CAD software. This feature allows the user to quickly and easily locate and resolve any design discrepancies.

Select an error and the Crossprobing function will automatically zoom to the corresponding location in the CAD database and turn on the proper layers. Likewise, for analyzing standard Gerber files, the user can select components, component pins, or nets in their CAD data and the Crossprobing function will zoom to the corresponding location in the Gerber display. This essentially adds intelligence to otherwise unintelligent Gerber files.

This functionality is necessary for anyone analyzing the design data and wishing to maintain an accurate original design database.

  • Bi-directional zoom/view window location between CAM350 and the CAD data
  • Window/View synchronization
  • Automatic layer displaying and synchronization
  • Bi-directional selection of components, pins and nets
  • Error identifications are pinpointed in your CAD data
  • Crossprobing between intelligent CAD file and unintelligent Gerber data

This Crossprobing functionality further closes the gap between engineering and manufacturing. The user can now quickly locate potential discrepancies between design intent (CAD data) and manufacturing outputs (Gerber data), as well as cross reference potential errors back to the original CAD database.

Advanced Panel Editor

Advanced Panel Editor allows the user to automate the panelization process.  It allows for the creation of panel templates, intelligent coupons, pinning holes, fiducials, and title blocks. Populate panels in either an automatic stepping mode or use a spreadsheet for total control. Venting and thieving are fully automated as well, processing multiple layers in either a positive or negative polarity with user-defined patterns.  Anyone creating Panelized databases for production can benefit from this feature.

Advanced NC Editor

The Advanced NC Editor grants the user with powerful capabilities to manipulate NC drill and mill data. Add drill hits and mill paths, as well as advanced canned NC routines such as Drill Text, Mill Circles, Operator Messages, Pilot Holes and more.  The Advanced NC Editor allows checking and optimization of NC data in preparation.  Anyone involved in running a drill or mill machine can benefit from this feature.

Flying Probe Editor

Flying Probe test for bare-board PCB's has never been easier! A powerful graphical editor and filtering options allow the user to extract all the necessary data like nets, test-points, and adjacency information in a snap. The Flying Probe Interface presently writes the Probot, ATG, Integri-test, PROBOTECH, IPC-D-356, IPC-D356A file formats, as well as a special ACT Neutral format.  Anyone running or creating files for a Flying Probe Tester can benefit from this feature.

Bed of Nails Editor

The Bed-of-Nails Editor produces all files necessary to build a single- or double-sided clamshell test fixture. A graphical editor and filtering options give the user complete interactive control of the test point information. Supported formats include TTI (Test Technologies International), Circuit-Line, IPC-D-356, IPC-D-356A, as well as generic plate drill files and netlists. Anyone creating Bed-of-Nails fixtures can benefit from this feature.