More on Autorouters

We often get asked how our Trailblazer and Tracker routers differ. The core engines are now identical as of version 7.0 . Basically its the sophistication of the algorithms. The better they are the higher the completion percentage. Both of our Autorouters use sophisticated mathematics to get the job done, however Trailblazer has more analysis methods and auto-cleanup algorithms at its disposal. Therefore Trailblazer almost always gets 100%. The following two screens from the respective applications clearly demonstrate why Trailblazer does better.

Trailbazer completed the routing task using no vias whereas Tracker required 3 using the default strategies. Adjusting the strategy parameters could improve the results in Tracker whereas Trailblazer automatically seeks the best result.

The fewer vias used, the less likely that the available routing channels will become blocked.

Trailblazer is interactive...

One of the more significant differences between the two routers is that Trailblazer has an Interactive mode. This means that the designer can direct the router by directly grabbing tracks and steering them in the direction he wants the path to go. This is an invaluable tool when dealing with extremely dense designs encountered today. Both routers are fully re-entrant, allowing you to start and stop at will and thus change the modes of operation as necessary.

The comparison chart below of key router features summarizes the key differences between Trailblazer and Tracker.

The following Graphic illustrates how both McCAD Autorouters (Trailblazer &Tracker) make use of Push & Shove technology to efficiently route connections. Most other routers either lack this capability or the same degree of sophistication.