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Chromatic Color Schemes Within DxDesigner

As I drove home last night from the office, the spectacular fall colors were on display in Colorado. The views on the rolling foothills were stunning; deep green manicured grass, orange and red non-native trees, and the brilliant yellow of the native Aspen trees all placed against a sky filled with clouds of dark blue grays, and muted yellows of dry grasses. Mentor Graphics’ DxDesigner has long supported similar, vibrant color schemes to enhance the readability, look, appearance, and communication aspects that a schematic comprises.

The original color schemes shipped with DxDesigner were designed for what is now ancient technology, CGA 4-bit color schemes with 16 colors.

In today’s colorful computing world, the out of the box scheme of Expedition, with its stark greens blues and yellows on a black background and the simple but widely spaced fixed stroke font, is the first order of business to replace.  I often use a wide-variety of color schemes mostly based on how information is to be presented or analyzed as well as use a color scheme shipped in the standard directory of the current release called “Aspen Blue”.  This scheme was architected a few years ago as the team I work with was developing a new demo named Aspen. The goal here was to create a new scheme within a white background that looked great on computer screens, projectors, and in printed documents.  If you have ever been to a ski resort in the winter, the variation in colors trends to the blues and greys with subtle variations of the blues in the various layers of snow and ice.  The inspiration of nature inspired the new scheme and enhanced the schematic to a professional document.

How do you use color in your documents?  I continue to look for enhanced color schemes while using DxDesigner.  Please send me your preferred color scheme by the end of October 2012 via email and I will review entries and send out a Mentor Graphics notepad holder and 4Gig USB drive to the top entry!

Gary Lameris
Mentor Graphics, Technical Marketing Engineer
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Gary LamerisMentor Graphics Technical Marketing Engineer focusing on xDX Designer for Xpedition PCB and PADS PCB layout Visit PCB Schematic Design with DxDesigner

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Comments 3

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Yes, most of today's windows apps run on a white background basis, but I still prefer the black background option for my schematics, it has a better readability (at least for me) I think it will be helpful to have the possibility to get different colours background inside the symbols, having the option to define different colour for the symbol background (the symbol black-box part let’s say) and the additional figures (Lines, circles, arcs, etc. of the foreground symbol. For example we can get different background colour for microprocessor symbols, linear components, discrete components, etc. In this way you could easily identify the type of components in big complex schematics with mixed technologies.

Francisco Fernandez
10:54 AM Oct 10, 2012

Color coding nets is something I am interested in. It should be tied to CES schemes, for example high speed nets are defined as blue, they show up as blue in schematic. High current red for example. Once the color scheme is defined any nets assigned to the class show up with this color automatically. Give user ability to toggle between off/ net class/ constrain class color nets.

joe borland
1:41 PM Oct 12, 2012

We not only set colors for component and/or texts in DxD but also we set color for nets like VCC or GND. For example we prefer to set all power nets to RED and all GND nets to Deep Blue in Dxd.

Leyuan Wang
7:00 AM Oct 15, 2012

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