How to Install and Setup EAGLE
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Fixed a crash in the ROUTE command that could happen while pushing against a device with embedded signal layer wires. Read the full changelog EAGLE is a professional Windows utility built specifically for helping you design printed circuit boards. It sports a straightforward interface that gives users the possibility to create a new project by using the library, schematic, board, or text editor. The board editor comes packed with a wide range of dedicated tools that allow users to draw arcs, circles, polygons, and rectangles, insert wires, embed text messages, and show or hide layers.
Grab the most recent version that matches your operating system the software is available for Windows, Mac and Linux. It’s a relatively light download — about 45MB. EAGLE installs just like any old program, it’ll self extract and then present you with a series of dialogs to configure the installation.
There are a few limitations to be aware of when using the free version: Your PCB design is limited to a maximum size of x 80mm 3. Even if you’re designing a big ‘ol Arduino shield , you’ll still be well under the maximum size. Only two signal layers allowed. If you need more layers check into the Hobbyist or Standard licenses.
Can’t make multiple sheets in your schematic editor. Limited to email or forum support. For non-profit use only. If you’re going to go out and sell your design, maybe check into the “Light” version of the software. If you need to upgrade your license there are a few versions available. Most licenses are still incredibly low priced in comparing to the other stuff out there. The Control Panel is the “homebase” for Eagle, it links together all of the other modules in the software.
You can explore the six separate trees in the control panel, which highlight separate functions of the software: Libraries — Libraries store parts, which are a combination of schematic symbol and PCB footprint.
Libraries usually contain a group of related parts, e. Design Rules DRU — Design rules are a set of rules your board design must meet before you can send it off to the fab house.
In this tree you’ll find DRU files, which are a a pre-defined set of rules. They can be used to automate processes like generating bill of materials bom. In one click you can set the color scheme and assign key bindings. Projects — This is where each of your projects are organized into a single project folder. Projects will include schematic, board design, and possibly gerber files.
If you select a file in a tree, information about it will appear in the right-hand portion of the window. This is a great way to explore libraries, project designs EAGLE comes with some fun examples , or to get a good overview of what a script’s purpose is. There are hundreds of libraries in here, some devoted to specific parts like resistors, or NPN transistors, others are devoted to specific manufacturers. This is an amazing resource! But it can also be a bit overwhelming. Even if you just want to add a simple through-hole electrolytic capacitor, there are dozens of libraries and parts to sort through to find the right thing.
Instead of using the hundreds of default libraries, you can use the SparkFun EAGLE Libraries , which are filtered down to only include the parts that we’ve used in designs ourselves. And they’re constantly updated with new parts we’ve discovered.
Here’s how you can install and use the SparkFun libraries instead of or in addition to the default ones: Step 1: Download the SparkFun Libraries The most recent version of the libraries can always be found in the GitHub repository.
Basically, all you’ll need to do from the main repository page is click “Download ZIP”. Save the ZIP file somewhere handy. Then extract the folder — don’t forget where it is! Step 2: Go to the “Options” menu and then select “Directories”. This is a list of computer directories where EAGLE looks when it populates all six objects in the tree view There are a few options here.
Mac and Linux users should place a colon: Step 3: To do this, right click on the “lbr” folder, and select “Use none”. Then check the libraries in each of the two folders.
Next to them should be either a grey or green dot. A green dot next to a library means it’s in use, a grey dot means it’s not. Your libraries tree should look a little something like this: If you’ve created library parts that you would like to share with SparkFun to include in our Eagle library, visit this tutorial to see how.
Open one up by expanding the “Projects” tree. From there, under the “examples” folder open up the “arduino” project by double-clicking the red folder or right-clicking and selecting “Open project”.
Note that, in this view, project folders are red and regular folders are the standard yellow. They should be used together to create the finished product that is a functional PCB design. Schematic left and board editors both open. Click to embiggen. The schematic editor on the left above is a collection of red circuit symbols which are interconnected with green nets or wires. A project’s schematic is like the comments in a program’s code.
It helps tell the story of what the board design actually does, but it doesn’t have much influence on the end product. Parts in a schematic aren’t precisely measured, they’re laid out and connected in a way that’s easy to read, to help you and others understand what’s going on with the board design. The board editor is where the real magic happens. Here colorful layers overlap and intersect to create a precisely measured PCB design. Two copper layers — red on top, blue on the bottom — are strategically routed to make sure different signals don’t intersect and short out.
Yellow circles on this design, but they’re more often green called “vias” pass a signal from one side to the other. Bigger vias allow for through-hole parts to be inserted and soldered to the board. Other, currently hidden, layers expose copper so components can be soldered to it. Keep Both Windows Open! Both of these windows work hand-in-hand.
Any changes made to the schematic are automatically reflected in the board editor. Whenever you’re modifying a design it’s important to keep both windows open at all times.
If, for instance, you closed the board window of a design, but continued to modify a schematic. The changes you made to the schematic wouldn’t be reflected in the board design.
This is bad. The schematic and board design should always be consistent. It’s really painful to backtrack any changes in an effort to reattain consistency. Always keep both windows open! There are a few ways to tell if you don’t have consistency between windows. First, there’s a “dot” in the lower-right hand corner of both windows. If the dot is green, everything is groovy. If the dot is magenta, a window’s probably closed that shouldn’t be.
Second, and more obvious, if you close either of the two windows a big, huge warning should pop up in the other: If you see that warning STOP doing anything, and get the other window back open. Navigating the View This is a subject that’s usually glazed over, but it’s important to know how to navigate around both of these windows. To move around within an editor window, a mouse with a scroll wheel comes in very handy.
You can zoom in and out by rotating the wheel forward and backward. Pressing the wheel down, and moving the mouse allows you to drag the screen around. If you’re stuck without a three-button mouse, you’ll have to resort to the view options to move around the editor views.
All of these tools are located near the middle of the top toolbar, or under the “View” menu. The zoom in — — and zoom out — — tools are obviously handy. So is the “Zoom select” tool — — which alters the view to your selection. Anything from the background color, to layer colors, to key bindings can be modified to fit your preference.
Better tailoring your interface can make designing a PCB much easier. On this page we’ll talk about how we at SparkFun prefer to customize our UI. None of these steps are required. Customize your UI as you see fit. These are just the settings that we’ve grown accustomed to. Setting the Background Color The first adjustment we always make to the UI is the background color of the board editor.
The standard white background doesn’t always meld very well with the array of colored layers required for board design. Instead, we usually opt for a black background.
Grab the most recent version that matches your operating system the software is available for Windows, Mac and Linux. It’s a relatively light download — about 45MB. EAGLE installs just like any old program, it’ll self extract and then present you with a series of dialogs to configure the installation. There are a few limitations to be aware of when using the free version: Your PCB design is limited to a maximum size of x 80mm 3. Even if you’re designing a big ‘ol Arduino shield , you’ll still be well under the maximum size. Only two signal layers allowed.
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