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What is Protel PCB ?

PCB manufacturers make use of software to design printed circuit boards. In PCB production, the use of the software is very important. Protel PCB is one of the best software for PCB design. This software helps electronic engineers to design layouts for PCBs.  Engineers make use of this software to work on the design process, get previously utilized board designs from PCB archives, and confirm circuit schematic designs.

Engineering companies use PCB design software for PCB development. There are several PCB design software specifically designed to meet the various needs of PCB engineers. The design of electronics requires a combination of skills and engineering science. When designing a circuit board, producers have to select a circuit configuration. Therefore, it is important to use the right software for every design.

What is Protel PCB Used for?

Protel software pcb is a comprehensive and modern solution specifically created for PCB designers. This software is the best choice among designers and engineers across the world. It is well known for its accuracy and efficiency in designing PCBs. This software represents years of development and innovation.

Protel PCB has been available since the 1980s. It is an important tool for PCB designers. It tests, verifies, and completes PCB design concepts. This software is one of the best EDA software. This software is very old and as such, requires a virtualization tool to run.

This cost-effective and easy-to-use software helps to make PCB designs accurately. Protel launched PCB 1.0 in 1991 and between 1991 and 1993, it launched PCB 2.x. Protel98 was launched in 1998. Protel has launched several versions ever since. It is now rebranded as Altium Designer.

Since the 80’s, Protel PCB has been utilized for PCB design in several companies across the world. Even universities use this software to teach circuit design. Protel was designed by Altium. This software has continued to offer high-reliability and high performance PCB design. This software enables engineers to make innovative PCB designs. Protel PCB is very easy to learn and includes all design features.

Benefits of Protel PCB

Protel PCB file Viewer

Protel PCB is software specifically designed for engineers. This software has a lot of benefits discussed below;


Protel PCB is ideal for both experts and novices since it is very easy to understand and use. This software’s tools come easy. The exporters, importers, and other tools can be used by any designer. Unlike other PCB software, the Protel design system is user-friendly. This software features easy-to-use tools, design templates, and a well-detailed library of components.

Reduces design complexity

This software simplifies design complexity. It makes use of a schematic and this schematic starts with selecting the right parts. You can identify and import vendor components in your design from the cloud. Engineers can design circuits on multi-layer and single-layer boards. Protel PCB simplifies complex designs into logical ones.

Saves costs on production

Protel PCB helps designers to save costs of production that could have been spent on designing physical prototypes. Quick virtual prototyping via the utilization of software tools enables manufacturers to commit resources and labor to a cost-efficient model for the final product.

Reduces Errors

When you use Protel PCB, you are more likely to encounter minimal errors. This software finds errors and fixes them early enough. It makes it easy for engineers to keep track of their job. Protel PCB can identify compatibility errors and fix them. Fewer errors will help you move on to the production process without delays.

Generates new ideas

The use of Protel PCB for designing PCB enables designers to generate new ideas. Working with this software helps you think outside of the box. You can make a design and try it out to see if it works.

This software gives you the ability to effortlessly make hierarchical designs. You can explore the features and interface of this software to get new ideas.

Features of Protel PCB

Protel is one of the first PCB software designed for personal computers. This software has continued to pioneer innovative tools that are useful in all aspects of the design process of a PCB. Protel, which is now known as Altium designer, has gained more than 30 years of experience in making great designs for PCB. This software offers some features which include;

Advanced route and place tools  

Protel features great reroute and place tools. This is one of the integral features of its design system. These tools are now more advanced in Altium designer. You can easily position and organize your components with smart placement algorithms.

This software features smart routing tools that help designers to complete PCB routing faster. The native 3D environment helps you to confirm the component position to imported mechanical design data. You can also adjust where your component is placed while working in 3D. This software now has improved core layout functionality, providing designers with the state-of-the-art tools required.

Improved utilities and functionality

Protel PCB helps you stay competitive. This software helps designers to route circuit board track much faster. It features Active BOM that helps you to directly evaluate component data and select the components into the PCB layout.

Unified Interface

Protel software PCB is specifically designed to deliver powerful designs to engineers and designers. This software is an effective application that contains advanced design tools needed to help you achieve a great design. The interface is very easy to use for both experts and newbies.

3D visualization

This is another feature this software offers. Since Protel PCB is now upgraded to altium designer, its 3D feature enables engineers and designers to clearly interact and visualize their designs. The layout tools will help you to route and place your tasks without errors. You can also see your design in a 3D format and as well as adjust your placement against any imported mechanical data.

Customer interaction use case

This software allows designers to have an interaction with their customers. The Protel design system offers customer interaction use cases. You can keep your customer informed about the progress of your design by sharing snapshots of your work. You can share these snapshots on any device.

More Facts about Protel PCB

There are various Protel PCB design softwares available for PCB designers. Protel schematic pcb is an ideal choice for electronics and electrical engineers. This package’s size for installation is 1.35 mb. PCB Creator is very easy to use. A 3D protel PCB viewer integrates into the design environment of protel PCB.

The installation management system in the advanced version of protel PCB enables designers to create an installation of the software anytime after the first installation is made. This helps designers to update, install, and eliminate additional functionality.

The editor in this software utilizes the concept of Design Rules to determine the needs of a design. These rules serve as an instruction set for the editor. They guide you through each aspect of the design, from clearances, routing, plane connection styles, widths, etc. The design rules are applied in a hierarchical way. Several rules of this type can be established.

Protel PCB features Active BOM, a management tool that provides designers with another data portal in their design. Active BOM enables you to evaluate component data. Protel PCB features Active Route that helps to make manual routing results. This helps you to direct the routing to wherever you want.

Limitations of Protel PCB

Protel PCB comes with great features and a lot of benefits. However, there are some limitations to using this software for designing a printed circuit board. The limitations are as follows;

  • It has several functions which makes it a bit difficult to use.
  • Startup times and file access can be very slow
  • The default settings seem to be unhelpful
  • It has no simulation options
  • The components and the interface are less customizable
  • The subscription cost is high

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get the Protel PCB? Protel PCB software can be downloaded for a free trial version for two weeks. This trial version includes a virtual workshop. After the trial version, you will have to pay for a subscription to continue with this application. Protel PCB isn’t free software; it requires you to pay for the services enjoyed.

Is Protel PCB ideal for a beginner? Protel PCB is one of the best softwares with an easy interface. This software is very easy to use, hence, it is an ideal option for novice designers. It is a user-friendly software that makes your journey throughout the design process very easy for you.


All electronic circuits are produced on PCBs. With the introduction of PCB software, PCB design has become an easy aspect for designers and engineers. The physical layout of the circuit and the choice of components is as important as the design of the circuit. Protel PCB is reliable software that features advanced tools for PCB design.

This software offers great data management tools, advanced routing technology, 3D visualizations, and release management tools. It is an ideal option for designers since it offers great features and benefits. This software guarantees accuracy for designers.




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