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12 The PCB Design Magazine • August 2016 message is that PCB designers need to under- stand the strengths and weaknesses of materi- als and feed the models with the appropriate process windows for the material in use. It's a trap that new designers have fallen into since the early days of imagining: You can drill a hole more accurately than the drill is capable of, sim- ply by putting more decimal places on the fab drawing. If they would only listen… Just because you hear two subjects in one sentence, that doesn't necessarily mean that the factors that impact the two subjects are the same. "We are here for your comfort but pri- marily your safety" comes to mind. Flying in turbulent air is uncomfortable, precisely be- cause the vertical stabiliser is larger than it needs to be to ensure the airplane can continue to fly with one failed engine. Likewise, lifeboats are self-righting for safety but (allegedly) very uncomfortable to travel in. In high-speed signal integrity, the critical factors that drive insertion loss differ from those that control impedance, and copper roughness, which aids reliability, is the enemy of the ultra-high speed signal. But In this issue of The PCB Design Magazine, we're focusing on you, the PCB designers and design engineers. We asked for your thoughts about PCB design and the industry in general, and we even offered a few "prompts" to get your minds going; my favorite prompt was "This is really stupid…but we do it all the time." So, without further ado, here are the voices of the industry—your peers. Martyn Gaudion Managing Director POLAR INSTRUMENTS If they would just do this… Realise that better modelling won't fix a poor design or make a low-specification mate- rial perform above its capabilities. Models allow you to get the best from the available materials, but they can't perform miracles. The important FEATURE X

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