Autodesk Eagle Has Crash Landed

Today is a sad day. Today is the day where I share with you the new plans for the popular PCB design program; EAGLE. As you may know from a previous blog post, EAGLE was aquired by Autodesk (from Farnell) last year and its future was up in the air. Whilst Autodesk is a respectable CAD software company, many people steer clear of their products due to the willingness to embrace subscription based licensing, which naturally doesn't mesh well with the maker community.

EAGLE was the standard for small-scale PCB and schematic design because of its availability and free-use license options; no longer. I myself have used EAGLE for 3 years or so now, and while perhaps not as invested into it as other users, I know my way around it and have plenty of custom libraries which I rely on.

The big point for me will be watching what changes Autodesk make to the software itself. If they overhaul the UI, introduce the features that it's been missing, and implement  inter-product compatibility (such as pre-rendered 3D models to create 3D PCB mockups in Fusion 360 easily), then perhaps I might deal with the changes and stick with them. However there's a good chance that in the future I'll be exploring KiCAD as a viable alternative. But until then, here is a great video from Dave Jones at the EEVBlog detailing the changes and how they may affect users.

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I’d recommend Kicad. It’s free, Open source and has some great features. I’m an escapee from the Altium bloatware and have loved using it.

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Hey Ralph,

Yeah, I’ve heard some good things about KiCad. My only hesitation is the Eagle Libraries that I’ve created from scratch, and also knowing the software. I might try out the new Eagle free version, and see how it goes and hold judgement for now.