What's new in Macaos Gallery

Macaos Gallery 2.0

Depanelization

Depanelization is the process of removing individual boards from a panel, after the boards have been populated with components. Traditionally, boards have been depanelized by breaking or cutting the the break-off tabs which hold the panel together. However, the mechanical forces (particularly bending) which can take place may weaken or damage the solder joints of fine-pitch SMT components near the board edges. This problem can be mitigated by using a milling machine to remove the break-off tabs.

The Depanelizer module allows you to easily and quickly accomplish the two specific tasks required for depanelization by milling machine:

  • Generate a milling program for removing the break-off tabs from a panel. A milling program contains the numerical instructions for operating a CNC milling machine which removes the break-off tabs from the panel. The Milling Program Setup dialog box helps you to specify axes and offsets when generating a CNC program for your machine.

  • Design a fixture for holding the panel frame and boards in place during the milling process. The depanelization fixture holds the boards in place, so that they do not move or otherwise get damaged during the milling process. Macaos has developed an inexpensive and reliable fixture style for this purpose. The fixture uses registration “pedestals” and vacuum suction to hold the boards in place as they are loosened from the panel, as well as a suction nozzle to remove dust from the milling process.


See the Depanelization module help page for more info.

Note: The depanelization is not available for Macaos Gallery users located in the Nordic countries.

Stackups with odd number of layers

It is now possible to define a multi-layer custom buildup with an odd number of copper layers. For example, to define a 3-layer buildup, start by defining a 4-layer buildup. Then, choose Omit as the copper thickness of one of the inner layers.

Panelization improvements

It is now possible to specify the outer dimensions of a panel. In this way, you can adjust the width of the outer frame to give the desired total panel width/height. The outer dimensions may only be adjusted after the Panelize operation has been executed.

It is now possible to place tooling holes and fiducial marks relative to the center of the panel. When specifying the X/Y distances, you can choose whether the distance is measured from the panel corner or the panel center.

Other improvements

Look and feel

We've given all modules a new look. Modules now have a more consistent layout, with parameters at the top left, info/help text at the lower left, and the graphical viewer's layer list to the right. Button bars across the top of each module give quick access to the most commonly used functions.

The graphical viewer has several status panels along the bottom edge, which display useful information. Click on the view mode or units panel to change the view mode or unit of measure.

Automatic subfolder management

When theproduct archive contains many files (typically more than 1000-3000), then performance may become sluggish. If desired, Macaos Gallery can automatically organize your products into subfolders. Choose between numeric or alphanumeric subfolders. Numeric subfolder management creates a subfolder for each 1000 product numbers. Alphanumeric subfolder management creates subfolders for the first character(s) of the filename, automatically creating subfolders when the number of files in a folder exceeds a user-specified threshold.

Gerber Job file

When exporting to Gerber, a Gerber Job file (.gbrjob) is included in the exported zip file. The Gerber Job file provides information which allows a manufacturer to automatically process the Gerber files and product properties.

Minimum copper to unplated edge clearance

Pressing the N key (with the mouse over the graphic viewer module while viewing a PCB product), highlights and zooms to the objects having the minimum distance between a copper feature and an unplated hole or contour edge.

Connection manager

The connection manager has been expanded with Ping and DNS lookup functions, which can help when troubleshooting connection issues.