If you are into the electrical engineering field, you’d know how important circuit diagrams are when it comes to representing an electrical circuit. With the modernization, the best circuit diagram makers further make the process a lot easier for you to get around with.
Circuit diagrams have been in use since decades, mainly to help plan the layout of the electrical circuit or even to ensure better idea of the blueprint of the process. While engineers drew the blueprints and diagrams by hand back in the day, things have changed now.
With the rapid growth of technology and the use of varying tools for visual representation of the ideas, circuit diagram makers have gained a lot of popularity. These are not just useful in helping improve the overall layout of the diagram but also helps get the process done in no time at all and that too with minimal room for error.
What is a circuit diagram?
For those who have no idea, circuit diagrams are the visual representation of an electrical circuit that is made using basic images of the parts used or even the symbols that are used in the industry.
There are two different types of the circuit diagrams available – the pictorial version and the schematic version. The pictorial version makes use of the standard images of the parts used in the circuit while the schematic version uses the industry level symbols.
The pictorial version is mainly drawn up for the people who have a less of a technical audience and just want to get a visual of the things happening. The schematic version, on the other hand, is mainly targeted for an electrician who is going to work on that circuit and develop it in real time. This is why it is more detailed and contains more symbols for better understanding.
Our Picks: 10 Best Circuit Diagram Makers For 2021
Coming round to the next topic of discussion is the list of the best circuit diagram makers. To be honest, there are not an ample amount of options when it comes to circuit diagram makers. But, we have sorted out some of the best ones for you to take a look into.
1. Edraw Max
Edraw Max can be considered a great software and one of the best circuit diagram makers in 2021 as it is freely available to people to build and design neat-looking and illustratively impacting diagrammed designs.
It can be easily logged on to through a web browser in Windows, Mac and the Linux platform. Circuit diagrams can appeal some amount of complexity in design when generated from scratch.
But the provision of ready-made circuit diagrams to create the foundation of industrial control, circuit and logic, systems and basic electrical diagrams makes Edraw Max the most preferable application among users.
It also lets these professionals share and co-work on their existing designs through an electrical diagram sharing platform with the help of an attractive number of over 800 vector circuit symbols and elements. Another prominent feature is that the final diagrams can be exported in high compatibility formats for further use.
When it comes to online diagramming tools, it goes without saying that Lucidchart is possibly one of the best available options.
The best reason why you need to try this for circuit diagram is because it allows you to draw both the types, be it the pictorial or the schematic version of the circuit.
Aside from that, Lucidchart also provides with a lot of flexibility in helping you choose from a wide range of industry level symbols that are available for use. They have varying category of symbols including resistors, transistors and even the power sources around that you can further access.
On top of that, you can also import some of the existing files from platforms like Visio, Gliffy, Draw.io etc. that makes it easier for you to carry on with your work without facing any sort of hindrance to it. It also allows easier sharing and presentation to the stakeholders and the other associated which is another reason why you need to try this one out.
3. Autodesk Eagle
Autodesk Eagle is a widely used software that renders high-efficiency electronic design automation (EDA) to allow printed circuit board or PCB users to seamlessly create schematic diagrams.
This is owing to its community-driven features that provide proper component placement, as well as proper routing channels and an extensive library content. The most appealing aspect of this circuit diagram maker is that it can be downloaded across multiple domains like the Windows, Linux and the MAC operating systems.
The application offers an overwhelming choice of PCB layouts with options available for cornering, loop removal, and placement during routing. It also supports real-time synchronization of the designs.
Autodesk Eagle is also structured with a SPICE simulator and offers electronic rule checking as well as drag and drop equipped reusable modular design blocks for accurate schematic editing. The generated PCB models can be loaded with 3D elements and given a fusion 360 integration.
This tool comes in two different versions, the live desktop version that you can install onto your desktop and get started or the online version which can be accessed from anywhere across the globe.
The best thing about this tool is the pre-made templates of the circuit diagram that they already have. All you have to do is select the one that you think works best for you and then make the edits on them as you go.
You can add circuit switches, symbols, and a lot more from the host of options that you will get on the platform. It also allows you to add, delete or even edit certain elements on the template as per your convenience. Once you do that, the software has been programmed to rearrange everything to fit all in one. This is another reason why you need to try this out.
5. Visual Paradigm
They have a number of circuit diagram shapes and templates that you can access further to get your job done. Aside from that, it also does allow easy sharing, which again is one of the reasons why you definitely need to try it without further complaints.
It also has a feature that lets you integrated with MS Office in case you need to get some data in without having to go back and forth. The easy export and sharing feature of this platform is what steals the show.
Visual Paradigm also allows you to bring in collaborators for your diagram, so you can edit them and get the work done faster without any further hindrance of queries. It also lets you add comments, which again is a reason why you need this.
CircuitLab is a browser accessed, online circuit simulator enhanced with a schematic editor that helps one seamlessly build and master circuit diagrams – digital and analog.
Without pressing the need of any installation formalities, being directed to the tool in just a click to draw customized circuits, CircuitLab has made its mark as the best circuit diagram maker of 2021.
This tool is structured with advanced features and commands for generating effective and coherent circuit diagrams. From easily connecting elements to a simple copy paste, applying SPICE-like component models for result accuracy to manually entering precise values, plotting arbitrary signals to customizing the circuits from a build box of tools and elements.
In addition to other attributes, the users can employ user-friendly, error-free circuit schematic diagrams that showcase the required simulations. The resulting schematics can be printed and saved as PNG, EPS or SVG and can be appended in design documents.
CircuitMaker, an unlimited and free of charge EDA software tool from Altium, can also be hailed as a collaborative community to help creative people with design content through circuit invention and electronic product developments.
Apart from coming with an extensive set of importers, CircuitMaker is employed as a schematic & PCB design software and is powered with a streamlined interface and powerful engine, emerging as one of the best circuit diagram makers in 2021.
The software offers its users superlative and high-quality designing of schematics and printed circuit boards, barring the limitations on layer counts or board area. It is also packed with great reference designs and a massive, rich component library that helps to transform great ideas into reality with effective sharing and collaboration.
Inbuilt features for one-click manufacturing, push-n-shove routing along with the presence of topological autorouter and multi-sheet schematic editor makes CircuitMaker a highly recommended platform.
Schematics.com is a recently introduced, totally free online website application, offering users the perks of creating and adding value to an ample number of schematic diagrams and electrical circuit designs.
This tool offers ease of access to some of the newest and popular as well as the most commonly deployed structural illustrations of electronic components and configurations. This schematic editor is well done with an interactive workspace, through which the diagrams can be easily worked upon while navigating to different areas on the screen.
Users can access this web application through their existing Twitter, Facebook, and Google account handles without having to go through any more registration formalities. The electrical diagrams can be embedded with widgets for beautification. One of the most important features that Schematics.com provides is that the projects that are underway can be shared for public and private purposes among the co-workers for the ease of collaboration.
9. KiCAD EDA
Another great software for generating and designing schematic illustrations and electrical circuit diagrams, KiCAD EDA is an open-source platform.
It can be also addressed as an electronic designing automation suite configured with a schematic editor. It is extensively deployed by electronic professionals and beginners to mainly furnish illustrative layouts of printed circuit boards (PCB) with the help of over 32 copper layers and a push and shove router to route differential pairs and tune trace lengths.
This application can be freely browsed by its users who can create an uncountable amount of designs without encountering any paywall restrictions to unlock desired features and options. These individuals once logged into the software can quickly start building the electronic circuit designs with the help of an extensive library of officially used schematic symbols. The circuit diagrams can also be projected with a 3D view for a more precise and interactive design inspection.
With more than 1.5 million users across the world, EasyEDA is a high-rated and extensively deployed online software when it comes to fabricating circuit diagrams.
This powerful PCB design tool offers an affordable subscription plan and is most suited for team collaboration as the changes to the electrical diagrams get auto-updated. It is also highly recommended for its project management abilities to generate and design private as well as public projects like spice circuit simulations in little time.
The produced PCB designs in EasyEDA can be enhanced with 3D views for imparting a better understanding of the diagrams. There is also the availability of an enormous design library that can be either created or imported from existing platforms for the ease of customization of the electrical circuits. The application works closely with China’s prominent electronic component supplier, LCSC as it offers direct links to over 200,000 components to the company.
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What is the significance of a circuit diagram?
Now that you know what the circuit diagram is, before we proceed on to the various types of circuit diagram makers, it is important you know of the significance of it.
Circuit diagrams help in a number of ways. Some of them include:
- It helps get a better physical and visual understanding of the process and the output of the circuit.
- It makes it easier to communicate with the electrician working on the circuit in real-time.
- It can be shared electronically.
- It gives a better idea and look into the possible loopholes in the process.
With the top 10 options for the best circuit diagram makers mentioned, we would say that the one that stands out amidst them all is LucidChart. Their library of the templates and the standard of the drawing looks a lot more professional in comparison to the other ones.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that the other ones aren’t worthy. It is just that this one tops the list when we are talking about the all around user experience. The one downside to this software is the fact that their pricing options can be a little bit intimidating.
But, that aside, their plans are worth the investment. You can have a hands on experience with all the varying options that they have. It helps add to your portfolio better and makes you come off as a professional with a sound technical knowledge of things. But, if budget is a constraint, SmartDraw is the next best option that you can try out.