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Here We Grow Again (And Again) – What’s New in Autodesk EAGLE 8.1.1 & 8.2

Sam Sattel

Autodesk-EAGLE-HERO

Springtime is here!

Don’t you just love the smell of freshly routed traces or the sights of freshly pressed FR4? We sure do. All of that new growth doesn’t just happen by itself though, and your Autodesk EAGLE development team has been working around the clock to make all this occur in your PCB design software tool. In fact, they’ve been working so fast that we in marketing are struggling to keep up! So without further ado, rather than offering up just one new update for EAGLE, we’ve got two. Take a look at what’s new in Autodesk EAGLE Versions 8.1.1 and 8.2.

What’s New in Autodesk EAGLE 8.1.1

 

New Alignment Tools

You guys have been shouting it from the rooftops – “Give us an easier way to align stuff on our schematics and board layouts!” We’ve been listening. In Version 8.1.1 we’ve added a ton of new alignment options that make it easy to precisely place components, vias, pads, and more, just where you like them.

pcb-alignment-tools

The new alignment tools include everything you might expect, including:

  • Aligning objects by their top, bottom, left, right, or center origins.
  • Spacing out grouped objects precisely with horizontal and vertical distributions.
  • Using the alignment tools with the route command to quickly clean up redundant connections.

New DRC for Unrouted Nets

It’s pretty easy to see when you have unrouted nets on a smaller PCB layout with just a handful of components. But what about when you’re working with hundreds of parts, and airwires are all over the place? Understanding what goes where at a visual glance can be a real pain.

This is why we’ve added unrouted airwires as part of the Design Rule Check (DRC) in EAGLE. When you run your DRC, you’ll see all of your unrouted airwires nestled together under their own category. Select each one, and you’ll see exactly what net connection needs to be made without having to dig through your rat’s nest by hand!

drc-airwires

New Library Editor Improvements

We’ve also made some handy improvements to the library editor in Autodesk EAGLE. You’ll now find some new buttons at the bottom add a device, add a package, or add a symbol. Also, when you select a symbol, package, or device in your library editor, it will also automatically highlight connected items. This is perfect if you want to see exactly which devices a package is being used in without any of the manual detective work.

library-editor

Ok, intermission!

We’re only halfway done with all of the new features you get to enjoy today. Everything above was only what we added in Autodesk EAGLE Version 8.1.1; now it’s time for 8.2.

What’s New in Autodesk EAGLE 8.2

 

Enhanced Routing

A not so long time ago in Version 8.1.0, we introduced brand new functionality to the Autodesk EAGLE routing engine – Walkaround/Obstacle Avoidance and Loop Removal. We’ve had some great feedback on how to make these features better, and so in Version 8.2:

  • We added a friendly visual reminder for when your routing mode has been changed from Walkaround Obstacles to Ignore Obstacles in the event you begin a route that violates your DRC rules.

routing-visual-indicator

  • We made the Loop Removal feature more intuitive by allowing loops to be removed with a plain old mouse move instead of requiring a mouse click.

loop-removal

  • And last, we also added some performance enhancements for how the routing engine avoids obstacles when your wire contains arcs. Faster is always better!

New Online Library Index

Once upon a time in EAGLE, you downloaded all of your libraries locally, loaded them up in EAGLE, and crossed your fingers hoping they were still up to date when you used them in your next design. We’ve decided to remove the anxiety from this whole process with the new Online Library Index.

Now you can download a set of standard libraries directly from our online index and place them on your design without worrying if they’re up to date. Just imagine, being able to place parts without all the stress and anxiety. Just pick, place, and be done with it. We’ll handle all of that tedious busywork of tracking revisions and updates.

managed-libraries

 

 

Other New and Improved Stuff

We’ve included a bunch of other fixes and enhancements in this release that is bound to please, including:

  • The default values for routing widths, drill sizes, clearance values, and grid settings have now been updated to match today’s common manufacturing capabilities.
  • You can now easily access the Group All command with a quick and common keyboard shortcut – Ctrl + A (Windows) or Cmd + A (Mac).
  • We’ve also killed some bugs, including correcting the status line prompt when switching between single-wire routing follow-me routing. We also fixed the problem of zero-length airwires that were occurring when you used the Undo or Route command.

The list of both releases is here.

Let the Good Times Grow

This is just the beginning everyone. For those of you that have taken us up on our promise, thank you and congratulations, you now get even more new features to enjoy! Our development team is bigger than ever, and we’re in full-on growth mode working harder than ever to deliver the best PCB design software experience around. Yearly updates are clearly a thing of the past, and we’ve got the development volume turned all the way up, now if only our marketing team could keep up…

Are you ready to grow with us? We’d love to have you along for our journey of growth. Upgrade now to an Autodesk EAGLE Subscription and start using all of the new features in Version 8.1.1 AND Version 8.2 today!

Already growing with us? The next time you start up Autodesk EAGLE you’ll be prompted to download the new update, enjoy!

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