There are many circuit design softwares available to satisfy diversified layout requirement, including free PCB design software, online free PCB design softwares, and industrial PCB softwares. This is the PCB design software list and brief introduction. You can have a comparison based on the introduction.

1.PROTEL (Altium Designer)

Altium Designer

PORTEL company introduced the circuit design software (CAD) PROTEL in the circuit industry in the the late 80s, 20th century, which is deservedly ranked highly among many EDA software and is circuit designers’ preferred software.

Many universities’ circuit specialties have the specific courses to learn how to use PROTEL, and almost all of the circuit companies have used it for their work.

It is good for one or two layers’ board, however, it becomes a little bit hard to use when it comes to more than 4 layers, not to mention the PCB design in signal transmission of high frequency and high-speed digitization.

2. PADS (PowerPCB)

pcb power

You can describe it the king of CAD in the low side. As far as I am concerned, it is the best EDA among the similar EDA for its easy-to-use, easy-to-learn. The quality of the design would not be worse than wg, allegro. It is the most widely used EDA in the market and it is also very suitable for small companies.



ORCAD is the EDA software developed by ORCAD in the late 1980s. It is as old as protel,but it is worse even than Protel. However, ORCAD’s principle enjoy great fame in the industry since its friendly user face, simply operation fuction, and strong function of simulation. Comparing to DX designer, I vote for Orcad. But DX designer has better management function,better integrated environment.

4. WG

It belongs to WG mentor. They introduced WG 2005 based on Windows. Lay out comes first to identify whether it is a great software when there are obvious advantages and disadvantages in the medium and high market. I have to say WG2005 is amazing in layout, it can be said as the king of layout since it has strong function in layout automatically and the rule for layout is very professional. ExpeditionPCB is the core of WG, and Wg 2005 contains DX,DC,DV,LIB,EXP.

5. Allegro

Allegro pcb There is no need for Allegro. It is the standard of industrial design.

6. Eagle(Easily Applicable Graphical Layout Editor)

Eagle pcb

It has friendly user face and strong schematic diagram function. It is not free but its price is acceptable. It has super function like online positive and negative annotation function, batch command execution script file, copper cladding, and interactive follower.

7. Kicad


Kidcad is an opensource software and it abide by GNU’s GPL copyright agreement. Kicad uses graphical user interface, which is very convenient to use with the mouse and keyboard, moreover, you can use is Windows and Linux.

8. EasyEda


EasyEDA is a free EDA tool suite free,which is Web , cloud-based and zero-install integrating powerful schematic capture, mixed-mode circuit simulation and PCB layout in a seamless cross-platform browser environment.

9. More Free PCB Softwares

PCBWeb Designer, ZenitPCB, TinyCAD, Osmond PCB, BSch3V, ExpressPCB, gEDA, Fritzing, DesignSpark PCB If you are a student or a amateur, you may not need to use above three layout software. You can just use KIcad or some free online PCB design software like Easyeda, with free design software and $4.9 pcb prototype order in Seeed Fusion, you can get your pcb cheap and easily. We will focus on free PCB software introduction next time.

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