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What is .SCH File Viewer ?

In the technology world, different file formats are widely used. The .SCH file viewer is one of such. Also, this file viewer plays a significant role in the designing of electronic schematics and PCB layouts. Before using an .SCH file, it is important to know how it works.

What is .SCH File Viewer?

A .SCH file viewer is one created by gEDA. Also, it is a collection of tools that designs electronic schematics and PCB layout. The .SCH file refers to a schematic file. This file comprises information that makes up the schematic. Therefore, this includes the XY coordinates for nets and gEDA/gaf format version.

A .SCH file is an electronic circuit’s schematic created with electronics design simulation programs. This file is widely used by electronics design programs to save the schematics of an electronic circuit in an .SCH file. Programs like Altium, EAGLE, and CIRCAD use this program. Furthermore, electronics schematics comprise a collection of components, buses, and nets. These schematics are ideal during the schematics capture process during circuit design.

The contents of the .SCH file are always in plain text. However, they are encoded as binary data in some programs. Other data stored in these files are component symbols and part numbers among others. A .SCH file comprises a visual diagram of a circuit board. Also, this file stores symbols linked by lines. Furthermore, .SCH files are specifically designed for creating actual PCB .BRD files.

Autodesk EAGLE is a CAD application used by electronics designers to make PCB designs and schematics. EAGLE features a schematic editor that creates electronic circuit schematics. Also, these schematics are further saved in SCH files. EAGLE can place a schematic within a physical board design after a designer has created a schematic. Also, the BRD files will save these designs.

The .SCH file can be opened in various PCB design applications. These applications include Altium Designer and Autodesk EAGLE. If you can’t access any of these applications, there is another way to view the PCB schematics in .SCH file.

Ways to Open the .SCH File Viewer

You can open the .SCH file extension by double-clicking it. However, there are a few things you will need to try if this doesn’t work. Below are easy ways to open .SCH file:

Choose the appropriate program

There are some programs that can help you open the .SCH file. It is important to select the right program if you want to access .SCH files. Below are programs that can open .SCH file:

  • Xilinx Foundation Schematic
  • PSpice Schematic
  • P-CAD schematic file
  • PCB Artist
  • Designer Schematic Capture Binary File
  • OrCAD Schematic file
  • XML Schema

Verify the type of file

Some programs may open a .SCH file based on the file type. Also, the file type is very easy to locate. It is always included in the file’s properties. Right-click the file and choose properties if you are using a Windows PC. After selecting properties, check “Type of file.” If you have a Mac computer, right-click the file and click “more info.” You can then check under “kind.”

Seek help from your developer

The software developer may have some solutions to your problem. You can contact the developer to help you open your .SCH file.

Utilize a Universal File Viewer

After several failed attempts, a universal file viewer is the last resort. This application is the easiest way to open a .SCH file.

Reliable Programs that can Open and Convert your .SCH Files

 .SCH files allow specific programs to have access to them. Therefore, these programs include:


This is a PCB design software application used for netlist generation and schematic capture. Also,CIRCAD is suitable for design review. The .SCH file saves the electronic circuit schematic designs of this software.

PCB Artist

This is a PCB design program that features more than 500,000 electronics components. Also, it saves circuit schematics in the .SCH file.  

Schematic Editor

The Schematic Editor by Xilinx is a 2D electronic circuit schematic program. This program utilizes.SCH file to store an electronic circuit’s schematics.

Altium Designer

This is a PCB design program suitable for Windows desktop. Also, Altium designer utilizes the .SCH file to store the schematic of an electronic circuit.


Most times, designers refer to the .SCH files as EAGLE cads. This is because the .SCH file viewer is specifically designed or utilized by EAGLE.


If you need a free electronics design automation software application, Kicad is an ideal option. This free and open source software saves schematics of an electronic circuit in .SCH files.

FTP Voyager

FTP Voyager by SolarWinds is a file transfer client that works with Windows. The. SCH file viewer saves this schedule file transfer data.

How to Create a PDF version from a .SCH File Viewer

.SCH files are specifically saved in a proprietary format.  You can open a .SCH file with associated programs and export it to a similar format. For instance, you can export a .SCH file to a PDF file.

You can easily convert the .SCH files to PDF by using a PDF printer. This printer creates PDF files. With this printer, you don’t print on paper. Therefore, the PDF printer prints what is in the file into a PDF file.  This will help you create a PDF version.

To achieve this, open the file and click the “print” button. Also, select the virtual PDF printer and select “print.”  The PDF24 PDF printer is free and very easy to use. Download this software and install it. You will see a new printer device on your system after installing it. With this printer, you can convert any printable file to a PDF.


The .SCH file viewer is an important file format that comprises a visual diagram or schematics of a PCB. It plays a vital role in PCB designs. The .SCH file can be opened in various PCB design applications. This article has provided the necessary information about .SCH files.