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Assembling the board is one of the last yet crucial steps in the PCB development process. A careful selection of components is of paramount importance especially before you send out the final components for assembly. Even a small modification in a component at this stage can lead to a huge change in the cost and quality of the product.
Let’s understand this with an example. Suppose customer A needs an electronic device with 512 GB memory and another customer B requires the same device with 1024 GB digital memory. So, do we manage these two variations with two separate designs? Absolutely not!
This is where Allegro® System Capture comes in the picture. It provides a simple way to create variants for a design and modify components for each variant before sending them out for assembly. The original design is called the base design and the modified versions are called the variants. In the variants, you can add, modify, or delete components as required.
After opening a design, perform the following steps to create a design variant:
After the variant is created, the schematic editor switches to the variant view. The title bar of the System Capture window indicates that the variant view is active along with the name of the variant.
In the variant view, many menu commands get hidden and an additional pane, Variant Info, gets enabled. This pane is where you add or replace the parts that you want to differ from the base design. When working with a variant, you can:
Add a preferred part
You can take a look to see them in action:
In addition to working on one variant at a time, Allegro System Capture also has a spreadsheet-based variant editing capability to manage all the design variants at the same time. All the information about the base design and its variants are displayed in the same user interface.
To open Variant Editor, choose Variants – Variant Editor. As you can see in the following image, you can perform all the variant-related tasks, such as replacing a part, excluding a part, comparing and modifying variants. You can even export the variant data into a .csv file.
So, you can see how convenient it is to create and manage variants in Allegro System Capture.
To learn in detail, watch this video to see this in action: How to create a Variant in the Allegro System Capture tool training byte on the Cadence Support portal. Click the training byte link now or visit Cadence Support and search for this training byte under Video Library.
If you find the post useful and want to delve deeper into training details, enroll in the following online training course for lab instructions and a downloadable design: Allegro System Capture v17.4-2019QIR4 (Online). You can become Cadence Certified once you complete the course.
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