The folks at Altium have just announced a new file importer for their Altium Designer unified design system; this importer allows Allegro files to be easily brought into Altium Designer.
Altium Designer automatically and transparently converts Allegro binary files to an intermediate ASCII text format that is then parsed and imported into an Altium Designer PCB design document and project. The translator supports Allegro Version 15.2 and 16 files. (Allegro must be installed on the designer's system for this to happen.)
The folks at Altium say that they believe that all designers must have access to the best possible design technologies if they are to remain competitive into the future. They say that providing good import tools makes it easy for designers to move from older-style legacy point tools to Altium Designer, so that they can future-proof the design capabilities of the companies they work for and stay competitive in a rapidly changing market.
Altium's unified design solution brings together hardware, software, and programmable hardware development within a single unified environment. It allows designers to unlock the potential of large-scale programmable devices as a system development and deployment platform, creating programmed device intelligence that can be deployed in multiple hardware domains.
Apparently, SpaceX, the commercial space launch system developer, has found the design process much simplified since moving from Allegro to Altium Designer. The folks at Altium say that Altium Designer offers a much greater level of version control, and SpaceX can better manage its design development. Altium Designer's features mean that the simplest modifications are automatically adjusted in all previous board and schematic work: SpaceX has a flexible and reliable development and documentation process for SpaceX's catalogue of PCB designs.
Matt Soule, a senior engineer at SpaceX, said, "Altium's unified design environment is intuitive and has made managing projects trouble free. In just two weeks I was able to learn the tool, design my board, and have a fully assembled PCB ready for test. Altium Designer is an incredibly flexible and capable tool."
The latest release of Altium Designer is available now. Contact Altium, or go to www.altium.com/summer08 to see Altium's Allegro Wizard in action, and to book a live web demo.