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This guide and the topics listed below will cover the basics of PADS Maker Layout. The focus in these sections will be gaining familiarity with the interface and navigating the software.


Video Introduction

This is a very brief introduction to getting started with PADS Maker Layout.  

Opening PADS Maker Layout

During installation, PADS Maker is added to the Start menu. To access PADS MakerLayout from the Start menu, go to Start > All Programs > PADS Maker Edition 2.0 > PADS Maker Layout 2.0

Starter Project Files

If you click on the New tab on the Start page, you will find 2 layer, 4 layer, 6 layer, and 8 layer ( 8 layer for PADS MakerPro only) starter project files for your convenience.  These starter files are complete with board outline, defined layers, design annotations, and design rules and are recommended if you are not sure what design rules to follow. The file names indicate the number of layers and the assignment of power and ground layers, if applicable.  Design rules are shown in the top right corner.  These design rules may be adjusted as needed.

Note the setup in the example below:

  • Layers 1 and 6 are Top and Bottom layers.  Layers 2 and 5 are plane layers.  Layers 3 and 4 are internal signal layers.  To alter the layer stack up, copper thickness or substrate go to  Setup Layer Definition.
  • Trace width is a minimum of 6 mils as well as the minimum clearance.  Minimum via pad is 20 mil.  To alter these settings go to Setup Design Rules.
  • Via pad is 20 mil.  Some standard via sizes have been provided with Maker Layout.  To create a new via go to Setup Pad Stacks.

Student and Maker versions are allowed 6 layers of which 4 can be signal layers.  Board size is limited to 25 square inches.  If you select an 8 layer seed design while running Student or Maker version you will not see the 8 layer setup.

MakerPro version allows 8 layers of which 6 can be signal layers.  Board size is limited to 50 square inches.  

Quick Start

To quickly get started on your design, follow the steps below. Links are provided for specific information on each topic.

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