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Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA: A Powerful PCB Design Software

If you are looking for a professional and reliable PCB design software, you may want to consider Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA. PADS stands for Personal Automated Design System, and it is a CAD tool for designing PCB layouts and schematics. It comes in three trim levels (Standard, Standard Plus and Professional), and is considered as a high-end commercial grade software package. It has a number of advanced features, such as signal integrity analysis functions, an advanced auto-router, thermal analysis tools, and more. In this article, we will introduce some of the main features and benefits of using Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA for your PCB design projects.

Signal Integrity Analysis

One of the most important aspects of PCB design is ensuring that the signals on the board are free from noise, distortion, crosstalk, and other issues that can affect the performance and reliability of the circuit. Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA offers a comprehensive signal integrity analysis tool that allows you to simulate and verify the quality of your signals before you fabricate the board. You can perform pre- and post-layout analysis, check for impedance mismatches, termination errors, reflections, ringing, and more. You can also generate eye diagrams, S-parameters, TDR plots, and other useful reports to help you optimize your design. By using the signal integrity analysis tool, you can avoid costly rework and ensure that your PCB meets the required specifications.

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Advanced Auto-Router

Another feature that can save you time and effort in PCB design is the advanced auto-router. Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA has a powerful auto-router that can automatically route your traces according to your design rules and constraints. You can choose from different routing modes, such as interactive routing, batch routing, pin-swapping, fanout control, via optimization, and more. You can also customize the routing parameters, such as trace width, spacing, layer preference, obstacle avoidance, etc. The auto-router can handle complex designs with multiple layers, high-density components, differential pairs, RF circuits, and more. You can also review and edit the routed traces manually if needed.

Thermal Analysis Tools

A third feature that can enhance your PCB design experience is the thermal analysis tools. Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA has a built-in thermal analysis tool that can help you evaluate the temperature distribution and heat dissipation on your board. You can perform steady-state or transient analysis, define heat sources and sinks, apply thermal boundary conditions, and view the results in 2D or 3D. You can also export the thermal data to other tools for further analysis or verification. By using the thermal analysis tool, you can ensure that your PCB operates within the safe temperature range and avoid overheating issues.


Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA is a powerful PCB design software that can help you create high-quality and reliable PCBs for various applications. It has many features that can simplify and streamline your design process, such as signal integrity analysis, advanced auto-router, thermal analysis tools, and more. If you are interested in trying out Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA for yourself, you can download it from [here] (requires ONID username and password). You can also find more information about the software on [this page]. We hope this article has given you some insight into the capabilities and benefits of using Mentor Graphics PADS 9.5-EFA for your PCB design projects.


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