February 20, 2012 08:00 ET

IPC-2581 Consortium Reaches Significant Design Chain Validation Milestone

Industry Consortium Members Will Provide Three Independent Inspection Viewers

CHELMSFORD, MA--(Marketwire - Feb 20, 2012) - The IPC-2581 Consortium announced today that it has reached a significant milestone in validating the accuracy and robustness of IPC-2581 data from generation through to consumption across its design chain wide consortium member companies as well as the availability of multiple inspection viewers for IPC-2581 files. The IPC-2581 Consortium's technical working group has published a validation matrix showing data produced by Cadence and Zuken has been correlated and validated against typical proprietary and multi-file manufacturing formats by several independent companies -- ADIVA, Easylogix, DownStream and WISE Software Solutions Inc.

"This is a significant milestone reached by the design and supply chain companies that are part of the IPC-2581 Consortium," said Hemant Shah, product marketing director, System & Software Realization Group, Cadence. "The availability of multiple validation viewers from three independent companies provides the industry with the openness, independence and confidence that has been lacking from the PCB design and supply chain."

IPC-2581 technical working group worked diligently with consortium member companies to compare and validate IPC-2581 outputs produced by Cadence Allegro and Zuken CR-5000 against traditional data formats provided to PCB manufacturers -- Gerber (274X), Netlist data (IPC-356D), NC-Drill data, and ODB++. ADIVA, WISE Software, DownStream and Easylogix have compare tools that can accept design data in multiple traditional formats which includes Gerber (RS274X), NC-Drill, Netlist data (IPC-356D), ODB++ and IPC-2581. Results of the thorough validation can be found on the consortium website --

The free IPC-2581 validation viewer from WISE Software is available for downloading from the consortium website as well as from WISE Software's website immediately. Validation viewers from DownStream and Easylogix will be available for download by end of February 2012.

The consortium has also made three designs in IPC-2581 format available for viewing using any of the three independent free viewers. More designs will be made available in IPC-2581 format in the coming weeks.

The Printed Circuit University will host an open chat session on February 22nd, 2012 where Consortium members will answer questions on the progress and status of IPC-2581, the Consortium and future plans and events. To participate in the chat, visit -

About IPC-2581 Consortium
IPC-2581 Consortium is a group of PCB design and supply chain companies whose collective goal is to enable, facilitate and drive the use of IPC-2581 in the industry. It is devoted to accelerating the adoption of IPC-2581 as an open, neutrally maintained global standard to encourage innovation, improve efficiency and reduce costs.

Members of the IPC-2581 Consortium include OEMs, EDA/DFM/CAM software companies, PCB fabricators, electronics assemblers and test companies. The Consortium is open to any PCB design and supply chain company that is prepared to support or is committed to a roadmap for IPC-2581 adoption.

For a history of data transfer formats, their origins and current status see A Short History of Electronic Data Formats.

Links to other articles:
Equipping the PCB Design and Supply Chain with 21st Century Data, by Keith Felton and Hemant Shah, Printed Circuit Design and Fabrication, 28 July 2011
Users Updating, Adopting IPC Data Transfer Spec by Mike Buetow, Printed Circuit Design and Fabrication, 24 June 2011
Intelligent Design, by Mike Buetow,, 2 August 2011

About IPC-2581

IPC-2581 is a generic standard for printed circuit board assembly products' manufacturing description data and transfer methodology. Developed in 2004 by IPC -- Association Connecting Electronics Industry, IPC-2581 is used for transmitting information between a printed circuit board designer and a manufacturing or assembly facility. For nearly every step in the industrial process flow, IPC-2581 offers a standard to help companies ensure superior manufacturability, quality, reliability and consistency in electronics assemblies built for their products. To know more about IPC-2581, please visit

©2012 IPC-2581 Consortium. All rights reserved. All other trademarks and registered trademarks contained within this document are the property of their respective owners.

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