Sunstone Circuits Launches New Version of PCB123 and PCB123.com


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Sunstone Circuits has launched a two-part solution for the PCB design engineer: the newest version of PCB123®, V5.4, as well as the new PCB123.com. The website has been completely rebuilt and relaunched to coincide with the new software launch. Now, PCB123 users can use a separate and focused website for PCB123 tool downloads, manuals, tutorials, updates, news, access to Forums, and to share designs, components and application plug-ins.

"Our user community wanted a more interactive gathering place for PCB123 users, so we built it,” explained CAD/EDA Manager Nolan Johnson. “While PCB123 may run only on Windows, our user community wanted easy access to the website content from any device. So we made http://www.pcb123.com responsive to mobile device types. Now users can once again come together to share, collaborate, and even show off their best work."

Version V5.4 brings new production-style manufacturing capabilities to PCB123, including:

  • more board thickness options
  • slots & cutouts
  • longer lead times
  • copper weight options
  • smaller holes
  • closer clearances
  • tighter tolerances
  • and more

"Some of our PCB123 users create large, EXTREMELY complex, often non-Manhattan designs,” Johnson continues. “We found some of these designs – the pulsed-power applications for Eagle Harbor Technologies, for example - were testing our polygon handler, so we upgraded the code. Now, PCB123 is much better at handling the complex operations of merging, clipping and optimizing complex designs for export manufacture, making it easier for the pre-engineering team to review and submit your board order to manufacturing. All this goes on behind the scenes, but the result is fewer manufacturing defects and tighter tolerances."

"Eagle Harbor provides innovative solutions for pulsed power applications," noted Ilia Slobodov, Research Engineer at Eagle Harbor Technologies (EHT). "EHT has delivered on R&D contracts for DOE, NASA and DOD. Our products rely on innovative PCB designs that must withstand operation at voltages up to 40 kV, while minimizing stray inductance and capacitance. To achieve these design goals, EHT designs with circular and ring-like layouts, and complex curved copper shapes. When our designs started stressing PCB123, the engineering team at Sunstone quickly started working with us by adding additional review steps to catch potential problems. Meanwhile, they analyzed PCB123, implementing new features that allow us to more easily design our particular PCBs."

"We're proud to work with advanced R&D design teams like Eagle Harbor," adds Johnson, "there's no reason to discount the capabilities of a 'free' tool to do cutting-edge design work. PCB123 truly is an industrial grade PCB CAD tool, built on a completely different distribution model."

Johnson continues, "For years we've had customers who've moved their PCB123 prototypes into production through Sunstone's PCBpro® Full Feature service line - it's a thriving part of PCB123's growth, but the benefits from PCBpro aren't limited to production quantities and panelization. As component packages get more complex, tolerances get tighter, and routing dimensions shrink to accommodate the new component packages, the manufacturing capabilities in PCBpro enable designers to prototype to the new technologies as well."

The PCB123 user community has always been able to click on the "ORDER" button inside PCB123 to send the design straight to manufacturing. Now, users will have a choice to either build for Prototype as before, or jump over to Sunstone's PCBpro service for complex services or full-blown production. All this means that, with PCB123, prototypes can start out closer to production, saving the designer time and expense. The Graphics/rendering engine has also been re-tooled, resulting in better and more accurate handling of very geometrically complex design features.

The new version of PCB123 and PCB123.com complement a growing suite of PCB solutions from Sunstone which includes new RF manufacturing capabilities, free Gerber files for all PCB123 orders, in-house ENIG capabilities, expanded lead times and enhancements for PCBExpress® Quickturn and PCB123®, increased capability and shorter lead times for v-score requirements, Bundled Assembly, and SMT Stencils with or without nano coating, to name a few. With all of these offerings, Sunstone Circuits is continuing to differentiate themselves as the preferred comprehensive PCB solutions provider within the marketplace.

Sunstone Circuits remains committed to providing the best technical support in the printed circuit board industry. Anyone seeking answers or assistance can reach live technical support representatives 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days of the year, via email, telephone or via online chat at www.sunstone.com.

About Sunstone Circuits

Sunstone Circuits® is the established leader in providing innovative and reliable printed circuit board (PCB) solutions for the electronic design industry. With over 40 years of experience in delivering high quality, on-time PCBs, Sunstone Circuits is committed to continuously improving the overall process for the design engineer from quote to delivery. With solutions ranging from prototypes to medium volume and production quantities, Sunstone has your entire product lifecycle covered. With live on-site customer support every day of the year (24/7/365), Sunstone Circuits provides unparalleled customer service and leads the industry with a real On-Time Guarantee that is the first of its kind. For more information about Sunstone's innovative PCB solutions, or to learn more about our custom quote or online quote and ordering process, please click here.

About Eagle Harbor Technologies

Eagle Harbor Technologies (EHT) Inc. provides innovative solutions to the commercial and research markets for technologies relating to pulsed power applications, high voltage nanosecond pulse generation, advanced plasma sources for laboratory, industrial, and materials science applications, and fusion energy technologies. EHT has had research and development contracts with the Department of Energy, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, United States Air Force and the United States Navy and has been selected for many Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Technology Transfer (STTR) Awards.

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