KiCad is a suite for electronic design automation (EDA). It facilitates the design of schematics for electronic circuits and their conversion to PCB designs.
It features an integrated environment for schematic capture and PCB layout design. Tools exist within the package to create a bill of materials, artwork, Gerber files, and 3D views of the PCB and its components.
KiCad comes with a library for schematic symbols and a built-in schematic symbol editor. These symbols can be use freely without any limits and you don't need to unlock any features to do so.
The interface is puts the focus on productivity. Design can be divided into multiple subsheets thus removing any limit due to complexity.
It comes with the electrical rules check (ELC) which automatically ensure connections present in the schematics. It will inform you of any output pin conflicts, missing drivers or unconnected pins.
This component allows you to create professional Printed circuit board (PCB) with up to 32 layers.
The Push and shove router is a feature that helps the user to lay out the board faster by respecting the Design Rule Check (DRC) <. As the drawing occurs, traces that are in the way are pushed forward. In the event where this doesn't work, the track will automatically be rerouted around obstacles.
Have a look at the following video made by Tomasz Wlostowski which explains in detail how it all works.
KiCad offers a powerful 3D Viewer which will render your PCB into a 3D Object that you can manipulate. It comes with a large collection of 3D models perfect for instantly inspecting your design.
Have a look at the following video created by the KiCad team which showcase how it works.
The community is constantly creating and improving addons for KiCad such as Footprints, Packages, Symbols, and Templates.
Since they are continually upgraded, the team has decided that starting version 6.0.0 they will no longer package these. We recommend cloning their repositories, this way you will always get the latest up-to-date version.
See bellow for the links to those addons.
|KiCad - 6.0.6_1|
|KiCad - 6.0.6_1|
|KiCad - 6.0.6|