7 Replies Latest reply on May 16, 2017 6:53 AM by max_clark

    Comparing ODB++ Files -


      Does anyone know of a tool or method to be able to compare 2 different ODB++ files against each other?


      We have been using gerbers since the dark ages and the PCB Design team is finally moving towards ODB++ as the deliverable but, there are request to:

      • Minimally be able to compare Rev A ODB++ vs Rev B via a graphical overlay
      • Best scenario would be intelligently compare (functions to show differences)


      We are aware of the inside compare , available smart utilities in Expedition and we currently have Gerbtool and Valor also.


      Its preferred by Engineering to not have to use a full seat of Valor or Expedition to do this final review.


      Thanks and direct emails are welcome.


      Chris Smith
      Application Support Analyst | PCB Services
      National Instruments |www.ni.com

        • 1. Re: Comparing ODB++ Files -

          Hi Chris, Viewmate Deluxe is able to overlay 2 ODB++ files, this version has a 30 day free trial,



          • 2. Re: Comparing ODB++ Files -

            Hi Smith


            You can compare the two jobs in Valor Tool..


            Thanks and Regards


            • 3. Re: Comparing ODB++ Files -

              AutoVue does a great job doing this.  Unfortunately, I no longer have access to that tool

              • 4. Re: Comparing ODB++ Files -

                I have basically the same question, but an additional requirement:


                I need a tool which highlights differing areas by e.g. drawing a rectangle around it, or in any other easily visible way.

                All known comparison tools show simply a graphical overlay of two different colors, where the differences show up in original color. If the differences are small areas in a big board you may overlook these tiny colored areas.


                The Valor NPI tool fulfils this requirement, but is too expensive if used for this single use case only. So if anyone knows another tool, please let me know. It doesn't need to be free, but it also doesn't need to be as expensive as a complete Valor NPI.

                • 5. Re: Comparing ODB++ Files -



                  I know you posted this originally a year ago but a comment was recently added.  I would like to make sure everyone is aware that Valor NPI includes CAM Compare specifically for this need.  In addition, within the Xpedition flow CAM Compare is automatically included during the generation of ODB++ if a user would like even without Valor NPI.  In this case, Xpedition generates ODB++ plus the Gerber files and the compare results are generated for the user automatically.  While I am not sure of everyone's flow in this community string, I wanted to make sure we were all aware the tools have been provided to prove out the ODB++ for our clients. 


                  Also the current release of Valor NPI 9.8 can compare ODB++ to ODB++ as well.


                  I believe everything is now covered.




                  • 6. Re: Comparing ODB++ Files -

                    Hi Max


                    No, nothing is covered. Your answer does not at all answer Chris' question nor mine.



                    Chris wrote: "Its preferred by Engineering to not have to use a full seat of Valor or Expedition to do this final review."

                    I wrote: "The Valor NPI tool fulfils this requirement, but is too expensive if used for this single use case only."



                    Your answer targets to Expedition and Valor NPI only, which (if you would have read the questions carefully) is not at all the preferred solution for us.



                    So the question is still open: does anyone know *another* tool beside the expensive Expedition or Valor NPI.


                    Thanks for any further helpful answers.


                    • 7. Re: Comparing ODB++ Files -



                      Thanks for your comments.  To be helpful I stated what is possible for Valor NPI to make sure that reader of this post understood the capabilities in Valor NPI since it has improved over time.  The original statement is that, and I quote, the "Its preferred by Engineering to not have to use a full seat of Valor or Expedition".  That does not exclude solutions our current clients may have in place already.


                      My comment about everything being covered is originally CAM Compare within Valor NPI only allowed for ODB++ and Gerber to be compared.  Fairly recently we added the ability to compare ODB++ to ODB++ which means you can compare anything that Valor NPI can read into another representation of the same data.  That means we now have "everything covered" in the requested list of requirement at the start of the post.


                      If you are seeking alternate solutions, that is fine.  But to suggest my reply covers nothing is simply inappropriate.



                      Max Clark

                      Mentor - Valor Division

                      Product Marketing Manager - Valor NPI, VPL and ODB++