Converters Capacitors and Calculators

A list of capacitor related calculators, conversion charts and converter programs available for use. Some of these are directly related to interest in the electronics community and some are of indirect interest.

DigiKey Resistor Color CodeS

This tool is used to decode information for color banded axial lead resistors. Select the number of bands, then their colors to determine the value and tolerance of the resistors.

SATURN PCB DESIGN TOOLKIT

PCB Toolkit series uses the IPC-2152 "conservative" chart for finding conductor current vs. temperature rise and also adds the ability to include other PCB parameters that can affect temperature rise (like PCB thickness and plane usage).

(Download Page) includes IPC-2152 Update!

Practical Electronics/PCB Layout

Wikibooks reference materials is a treasure trove of information for layout. It's definitely worth a review for those just getting started in layout design. Even seasoned veterans of the craft will find drill down topics worth exploring.

Wikipedia provides several excellent terminology references used in fabrication and assembly of printed circuits. If you are unable to locate the vernacular please ask one of our CAM specialists to assist.

Material Safety Data Sheets / MSDS

The data-sheets for inks and mask film reference the uncured form of these materials.
Drying and curing removes the majority of volatiles.


"Harmonize your engineering"

Host Site

"clean and simple program"

Host Site

Eagle by AutoDesk

Eagle by AutoDesk
"the tool of choice for 1000's..."
Host Site

OrCad by Cadence

"Future-proof Scalability"

Host Site

Target 3001

High Performance, easy to learn

Host Site

Labcenter

"productive and very affordable"

Host Site
Free!

"FREE and Unrestricted"

Host Site
Free!

GEDA Project

"a mature suite of free software"

Host Site
Free!

KiCad

"Cross Platform - Open Source"

Host Site
Free!

Graphicode

Industry Standard Gerber Viewing

Host Site

Solarbotics
Protospace
Phidgets
Kiskstarter Discover Tech
Robot Shop
Open Builds Store
Build Log Net
EE Web Community
Adafruit
Makerbot Thingiverse
Circuit Projects
Maker Masters
Instructables Robots
Stock Drive Sterling
Superdroid Robots
Lynx Motion

FR4-Tg135 Quick Spec's

UV Block, less than 0.5% penetration
UL 94V-O
IPC-4101
Class B Thickness Tolerance
Class A Surface
Comparative Tracking Index: PLC3 (175V - 249V)

Data Sheet - FR4 is G10 with Fire Retardant (FR)

RO-4350B by Rogers Corporation

The RO4000 material possesses properties needed by designers of RF/microwave circuits. Stable electrical properties over broad environmental conditions allow for repeatable design of filters, matching networks and controlled impedance transmission lines.

Data sheet for: .020", .030" and .060"

Visit the Rogers home page for updates and product advisories

Gerber Defined

The Gerber file is an image format used to print CAD layer drawings on film with a specialized PCB film plotter,or on photo-resist with a direct imaging printer. Gerber RS-274X is the PCB Industry Standard file format. An output file is generated for each layer in your project. These files are ASCII and can be viewed with any text editor.

The data has two variants:
  • RS-274-D (depreciated) AKA Standard Gerber
  • RS-274X (AKA Extended Gerber, AKA Enhanced Gerber)

Extended Gerber is a richer format that has all the constructs necessary for describing a PCB image efficiently. It has regions, positive/negative levels and powerful aperture macros. Planes and anti-pads can be described without painting. Pads are properly described as flashes, ensuring that no data is lost. RS-274-D files do not contain embedded aperture data. A fixed Aperture File or D-code Table is used during the generation stage of the CAD output, and must be included with your data package.

7.8 Revoked Standard Gerber (RS-274-D)

The current Gerber file format is also known as RS-274X or Extended Gerber. There is also a historic format called Standard Gerber or RS-274-D format. Standard Gerber is revoked and superseded by Extended Gerber, which is the current Gerber format. Consequently, Standard Gerber no longer complies with the Gerber specification. Files in that format can no longer be correctly called Gerber files. Standard Gerber files are not only deprecated, they are no longer valid. Standard Gerber is technically obsolete, revoked and superseded by RS-274X.

It differs from the current Gerber file format (RS-274X), in that it:

  • does not support G36 and G37 codes
  • does not support any extended codes

Standard Gerber does not allow defining the coordinate format and aperture shapes. It is incomplete as an image description format. It lacks the imaging primitives needed to unequivocally transfer information from PCB CAD to CAM The word “standard” is misleading here. Standard Gerber is standard NC format. It is not a standard image format: image generation needs a so-called wheel file, and that wheel file is not governed by a standard. The interpretation of a wheel files, and consequently of a Standard Gerber files, is subjective. In Extended Gerber (RS-274X) image generation is fully governed by the standard. Extended Gerber is the true image standard. Standard Gerber has major drawbacks compared to the current Gerber file format and does not offer a single advantage. Standard Gerber is obsolete. There is not a single valid reason to use standard Gerber rather than Extended Gerber. Always use Extended Gerber (RS-274X). Never use Standard Gerber.

Warning: The responsibility of errors or misunderstandings about the wheel file when processing a Standard Gerber file rests solely with the party that decided to use revoked Standard Gerber, with its informal and non-standardized wheel file, rather than Extended Gerber, which is unequivocally and formally standardized.


B&E Electronic Supply
MRO Electroinic Supply
Laser Equation
Protocase Custom Enclosures
Active Tech
Digi-Key Electronics
Utech Electronics
RTL Fasteners
Component Supply Corp
Samtec Technology
Newark Element14
Micro Fasteners
Jameco Electronics
BG Micro Electronics
Mouser Electronics
AP Circuits