Utilize BOM Management to Keep your PCB Design Right

Zachariah Peterson
|  Created: May 20, 2020
Utilize BOM Management to Keep your PCB Design Right

With Active BOM you can eliminate any guesswork out of component selection and help you to start your PCB design right.

ALTIUM DESIGNER

A PCB design tool to keep your PCB moving forward through all stages of production.

Are you tired of waiting for other people to give you feedback on your components before you can start your work? Are you tired of budget-busting eleventh hour changes on your design due to incorrect or out-of-date component information? If this sounds like some of the problems that you regularly face, you probably are up to your neck in design slow-down frustrations. Wouldn’t it be nice instead if while you are placing components on your schematic you could also get real-time information on those parts directly from your vendors? Wouldn’t it be nice if while you are creating your schematic you had a useful and detailed list of all the components that you are using in your design?

The good news is that now you can. Getting current and detailed component information and data from your PCB design tools are just some of the advantages that you can enjoy when you are using Altium Designer’s Active BOM. Bills of Material BOM management (ActiveBOM) has made materials management, organization, bills, product and product development, and product lifecycle management so much easier with all the necessary information available and updated in real-time in your software.

Active BOM: Another Portal Into Your Design Data

The BOM Management (ActiveBOM) function is one of the latest additions in the suite of tools that is all part of Altium Designer. Along with Altium Designer’s schematic editor and PCB layout application, Active BOM provides a portal into your design data. With it, you have a complete and detailed list of all of your components, BOM versions, and BOM items, and you can work directly with the component data in your design. Active BOM allows you to cross select components into both the schematic and the layout, making it an invaluable tool for you as you work as well as in design reviews.

Active BOM also provides a cloud connection to your parts and vendors with integrated BOM version control, giving you the ability to get the latest part pricing and availability information as well as the most current technical data. And yes, even with all of these capabilities you can still create a bill of materials report directly from Active BOM. Once you see how helpful Active BOM management software will be for your productivity, you will not want to design again without it.

Active BOM Management Software is an Active Part of Your Overall Design System

Active BOM is much more than a simple report generator; it is designed to give you access to the component data within your design. Update and create new active BOM versions for any BOM item and tap into online manufacturer BOM versions to save yourself a lot of time.

Screenshot of querying parts for data in Active BOM

Pull up to date part information and data using Active BOM

Intuitive and Powerful Schematic Creation in Altium Designer

With the parts you need provided by Active BOM, you will need an accompanying schematic capture tool as well and Altium Designer’s schematic editor is the right tool for the job. With an intuitive interface and design flow, Altium Designer’s schematic allows you to quickly get up and running with your first schematic. Designed for ease of use for new users, Altium Designer’s schematic capture tool also has the power and capabilities to handle the most complex design challenges.

And once you are finished with your work, Altium Designer stays with you through the end with a powerful assortment of electrical verification routines to make sure that you’ve created your schematic the way that you intended to. Engineering and manufacturing are subject to change throughout the product definition so make sure you are using a bill of materials that works with you and your product. Whether you are creating a simple one page schematic or a complex hierarchical multi-channel design, Altium Designer is the best schematic capture tool that you can use.

Create the Design you Need With a Versatile Schematic Capture Tool

Whether you’re just starting out, or you are a seasoned designer, Altium Designer’s schematic capture tool has everything you need.

Screenshot of cross-selecting between the schematic and Active BOM

Use Active BOM to cross-select parts into the schematic

Altium Designer’s Powerful and Full-Featured Layout Tools

To accompany Active BOM and its schematic capture tool, Altium Designer also provides you with the most powerful layout editor available. With a 64-bit multi-threading system architecture serving as the foundation, Altium Designer comes equipped with advanced layout features that are designed to help you to design at your best. For example, Altium Designer’s native 3D environment gives you the ability to not only view your design in 3D but also to pan and zoom around it as well as edit your component placement all in 3D.

When it comes to routing traces, Altium Designer gives you a host of helpful features designed to increase your productivity and reduce errors. Are you designing high-speed circuits? No problem, Altium Designer gives you the functionality to specify your routing topologies and check for adherence to the high-speed constraints that you have input into your design. Altium Designer has the power and the features to help you all the way through your PCB layout until the job is completed.

Altium Designer Gives You the Edge When it Comes to Place and Route

BOM management means having all the tools you need for PCB configuration and assembly to go smoothly. Forget engineering BOM if your product isn’t able to have the materials it needs. At the end of the day you still need to place and route components, and Altium Designer gives you the technological advantages that you need to get the job done.

It all starts with making the right component selections for your design. With Active BOM you can remove the guesswork of picking parts that will be ready to use when you need them, and design a printed circuit board that will be ready when it comes time for manufacturing BOM.

About Author

About Author

Zachariah Peterson has an extensive technical background in academia and industry. He currently provides research, design, and marketing services to companies in the electronics industry. Prior to working in the PCB industry, he taught at Portland State University and conducted research on random laser theory, materials, and stability. His background in scientific research spans topics in nanoparticle lasers, electronic and optoelectronic semiconductor devices, environmental sensors, and stochastics. His work has been published in over a dozen peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings, and he has written 1000+ technical blogs on PCB design for a number of companies. He is a member of IEEE Photonics Society, IEEE Electronics Packaging Society, and the American Physical Society, and he currently serves on the INCITS Quantum Computing Technical Advisory Committee.

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