Using NI Ultiboard: Determining SMD Pad Count

Publish Date: Dec 18, 2007 | 9 Ratings | 2.78 out of 5 | Print | Submit your review


Using NI Ultiboard is a new series of tips-and-tricks for Ultiboard. These short articles provide useful information to designers on how to find information, use a function or improve their design.

Determining SMD Pad Count

Since the cost of paste layers can differ from design to design it is often very important to understand the number of SMD pads you will use to manufacture your PCB. Therefore it is often important to determine how many SMD pads are used in your design to calculate the total cost of production. It is very easy to find this information in National Instruments Ultiboard.

  1. Open NI Ultiboard (Start > All Programs > National Instruments > Circuit Design Suite 10 > Ultiboard)
  2. Open up an Ultiboard file
  3. Select the  Statistics tab in the Spreadsheet View of Ultiboard. You can now view a report of all the pads in the design (as seen in Figure 1) 

Figure 1 - Statistics Tab of Spreasheet View

The statistics provide an important high-level view of your design, but not the specific number of through-hole (TH) or SMT pads (SMT= surface mount technology, SMD= surface mount device). To find this information on the specific number of TH and SMT pads you can:

  1. Select the THT Pads or SMT Pads tabs on the Spreadsheet View (as seen in Figure 2 below).
  2. You can also export this information to a .csv file to view in a spreadsheet application such as Microsoft Excel ® by clickin on the Export to CSV file in the Spreadsheet View (as seen in Figure 3 below). In this file you will find numbered columns that equal the amount of SMD pads.

Figure 2- SMT Pads or THT Pads tab in the Spreadsheet View

Figure 3 - Export to CSV File Icon

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